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Dead Man the Movie for Halloween
Any One Else Like Dead Man
The film Dead Man with Johnny Depp has enough character development and plot twists to make it your cult movie.
The theme is basic good and evil, innocence and knowledge.
Keep this one in mind when October comes around again. Costuming in the movie is ideal for a Halloween night.
The short vignettes ending with a black out pause allows stopping and group discussion.
The music has an original score that is a single guitar of riffs and weird color tones. A surround sound system would do Neil Young justice, he is the guitar player for the soundtrack.
Did the Dead Man get any justice?
Everything is Black and White in the Film Dead Man
Knowledge and innocence, black and white, sound and no sound, this film is loaded with duality and opposites. It is not just for entertainment. This movie is a thinking person's film. Better not be squeamish because it is just weird, as well.
First viewing of Dead Man forms many questions. What is going on here? I could not believe William Blake actually died in the end because I did not see it happen.
The movie is called Dead Man so William Blake died.
Time up. Gone to the spiritual world.
Dead Man Trailer
Jacob's Ladder by William Blake
The sky is the last thing you see in Dead Man
An art house style film in black and white. Original music composed while watching the individual scenes by Neil Young.
Premise is innocence and knowledge.
Have you seen Dead Man?
So who can like a black and white film with not much dialogue, no hard action, and weird guitar riffs the whole 121 minutes? The art house crowd or the consummate Johnny Depp fan. If you are into directors than the Jim Jarmusch fan.
I had not even heard of this film till 10 years after its initial release. I was mesmerized the first viewing and watched it again the next day with my husband. After watching it four times I'm still intrigued with the duality of good and evil, and naivety and knowledge that is the underlining theme of the film. The idea has added that much more meaning into the film for me.
How many people have seen Dead Man
What is Dead Man About?
Short plot summary
Here is the shortest summary possible. A young man in the second half of the 19th century travels from a big city to the western territories.
He is very innocent to violence, sex and characters outside of a normal family unit.
He meets up with all the varieties of knowledge that is your fare when learning about the world.
On the way he has a true friend, a mortal enemy, a short love, fights for his life and experiences the calm of the spiritual afterlife.
All this and the face and skills of Johnny Depp in the hands of director and script writer Jim Jarmusch.
The photo above right is from film blog SioixWIRE: May 2008.
What Is Your Favorite Scene From Dead Man? - Mine is the Makah village scene near the end.
"The black and white filming of the Makah village fills the viewer with wonder about what is coming next, and the encroaching finality that is sure to come. William Blake is witnessing new sights and seems accepting. He trusts his new friend to help him continue his journey." by paperfacets
Makah Nation in Northwest Washington
Makah Nation was in Dead Man
Right. 1910 photo by A. Curtis
Neil Young Film Score
Neil Young took two days and three sessions to make the sound track. It was done by watching the film and creating the guitar sequences as it was running. There is a brief recitation of the poet William Blake by Johnny Depp.
Maybe it is because I have so much enthusiasm for this film, but when viewing this trailer about Neil Young making the score my skin crawls. It starts at the ears and spreads. Now, that's music with extra punch!
When you read the titles of Neil Young's CD's you know he was a good fit for the Dead Man soundtrack. I have the CD and listen to it occasionally. Depp does a Blake poem and one clip of Nobody's dialogue is included, as well as, the scene of the three travelers. The rest is Neil Young's guitar.
Do Not Forget the Real William Blake
The Character's Namesake
Our dead man is named William Blake but he has never heard of the writer, poet and artist William Blake of England. His new friend Nobody in the western territories had.
As a young boy Nobody was captured by white men and taken from his Indian village to England and shown as a curiosity. He was afforded study and learned the white ways. He came to know the works of William Blake.
William Blake of London (1757-1827) was considered mad by contemporaries. He is now praised for creativity in a whole body of work that includes poetry, printing, and illustrations. Very recognizable is the poem Tyger of "Tyger Tyger burning bright..."
Bottom line; did you like Dead Man or find something interesting?
Video of Tyger
This video is intriguing. Inspired by the poem of William Blake.
Sometimes there is just more to a movie than the eye sees.
Watch this movie for Halloween. The music is strange and it is black and white. A good candidate for a creepy feeling afterward, without being scared.
© 2009 Sherry Venegas