REWOUND: REQUIEM FOR A DREAM [2000]

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I thought I’d try something different and write a short post about an extremely personal film to me, and the only film I consider to be a true horror film. If I am honest, this post was inspired by Eric‘s honest thoughts in his most recent post. Cheers buddy, you rock.

Given my younger years and what I put into my body, this is the one and only film that truly scares me. Don’t get me wrong, Repulsion, The Exorcist, The Shining, they are some of my favourite movies. They are creepy as all hell and gave me chills. Recently It Follows joined that club. But none of these had any lasting affect, they didn’t haunt my dreams… though I did once have a strangle erotic dream about the twin sisters from The Shining. Wait, what? Pretend you didn’t read that.

Requiem is the one film that, no matter how many times I watch it, each time I will stare blankly at the screen for thirty minutes after the credits, just thinking, ruminating, my head-spinning. I was so close to becoming a part of what Requiem depicts. The odd thing is, despite watching my potential future, this film never had this impact on me while I was using. Despite the hellish nightmare that is the climax of that film, it didn’t affect me at all until I got clean.

This isn’t surprising I suppose. Opiates deaden emotions. You don’t feel. You don’t laugh, cry, smile. It is all dead. So despite watching this at least fifty times while I was an addict, it didn’t have any impact on me. Which is what the main characters in the film are doing. Deadening their emotions to cope with what life has thrown at them. And if things get worse? Simple, use more until you can’t afford it. Which creates more cravings, more using, and often theft. Addiction is a vicious fucking cycle and I don’t think enough people truly understand that.

No one just takes up heroin for fun. Addiction to hard drugs and mental illness often go hand in hand, and if someone is shooting up, there is almost certainly a reason why. Self-medicating I think is what doctors call it.

I have watched the film three times since I got clean, compared to the fifty-plus times I watched it as a junkie. I’ve been sober coming on four years now, and the fact I have only watched this three times in that period is a testament to how powerful this film is. I’ve heard the term ‘mindfuck’ thrown around to describe some of the movies I love, and this rather crude description is pretty apt. This film goes to town on my brain, filling it with memories of behaviour of my youth. This is especially prevalent in the opening scene with Jared Leto and his mother. I was such a bastard to my mother. I don’t deserve her forgiveness. Yet she was the one who helped me get clean. Supported my every step. She forgave me, despite all the horrid things I had done or said in the past. I am truly lucky to have the parents I do.

Okay, that’s enough dear diary action for today. Time to watch a killer film, eh? Upcoming is another Aussie flick that is available online from tomorrow, 8th of May: INFINI.