“So much depends upon, a red wheelbarrow, glazed with rain water, beside the white chickens.”
William Carlos Williams
I saw Paterson, the luminous new movie by much beloved director (Down by Law, Coffee and Cigarettes) Jim Jarmusch, at the February Sunday Morning Movies + Talk at the Bookshelf. The movie chronicles 7 days in the life of Paterson, a bus driver in Paterson, New Jersey. He is a quiet man, seemingly content with his repetitive life, but also a poet and enthusiast of the American poet, William Carlos Williams, who wrote an epic 5 volume poem entitled, Paterson.
So the film is about similarities, or as U of G professor, Karen Houle, called it in her illuminating post film comments, pairings. It is also about creativity, love and the different ways these manifest in different people. The reserved Paterson (superbly played by an understated Adam Driver) is paired and contrasted by his wacky and exuberant wife (Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani). Set in an archetypal post-industrial city of the American North East, the film is also a quiet fist in the face of nativist Trumpismo; its diverse communities understand, befriend and support one another. How much depends on this kindness and civility? Sadly, we are in the process of finding out – and not just in the movies.