Esoteric Dissertations from a One-Track Mind

March 8, 2008

He Was a Quiet Man

Filed under: film — codesmithy @ 12:08 pm

I watched Frank A. Cappello’s “He Was a Quiet Man.” It stars Christian Slater and Elisha Cuthbert. Christian Slater plays Bob Maconel an introverted, ignored cubicle dweller. Maconel exists in a dead-end job, harassed by younger, yuppie managers. Originally planning to go on a shooting rampage, his life changes dramatically when, coincidently, another office worker, Coleman, goes on one first. Coleman severely wounds Venessa Parks, an unrequited love interest of Maconel’s. While reloading, Coleman expresses his desire to put Parks out of her misery. Maconel kills Coleman using the weapon he was planning to use to go on his shooting rampage. Parks survives, but is paralyzed. Maconel is promoted and treated as a hero.

Parks, unsatisfied with her life prospects, asks Maconel to kill her. Maconel is unable to, but after the attempted assisted suicide Parks discovers she has regained the ability to move some of the fingers in her right hand slightly. Eventually, a bond develops between Maconel and Parks.

“He Was a Quiet Man” is half dark comedy, half drama. It is ultimately a story about being alone. The desire to be noticed and lauded against the fear of being mocked and belittled. The line between lashing out at the world, and a self-loathing angst at the seeming inability to fit in. I haven’t seen another film capture those themes as well as “He Was a Quiet Man.” It isn’t for everyone. But, to those that can relate, it provides a commentary on the human condition one would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere.


A trailer for the film.


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