The Brothers Bloom is a mess of film. And yet, I own it and watch it a bit. It is the kind of film that is better on DVD because of all the stuff that comes with the film. In particular, it comes with almost 40 minutes of deleted scenes. As is often the case, the best stuff was left on the cutting room floor. What’s more, the deleted scenes show an original that is far richer and more complex. I can see why they cut it as they did. Even in its original version, the film was a mess. Why writer/director Rian Johnson didn’t see that his screenplay desperately needed at least one more draft, I can’t say.
And yet, the film is filled with some much that is wonderful, I’m glad it was made. There are two scenes that really stand out. The first is the opening of the film that tells the story of how the bothers started on their life of crime. It is narrated in verse and can be seen on YouTube. The second stand out scene is not in the film. It is very simple. The Curator, played brilliantly by Robbie Coltrane, tells the story of the death of his daughter and the stone golem.
I’ve been checking for the last year to see if anyone had put this scene on YouTube, but I guess no one could be bothered. It may be that the scene speaks more to me than to others. Certainly no one I have shown it to has thought as much of it as I do. I love story telling and this is just one man telling a story. But what a story and what a telling! So I went ahead and put it on YouTube. Enjoy!
Here is the text:
Well, like most monsters, the golem was once human. A boy about your age. And one day the boy was walking home and he quarreled, he fought with a very good friend of his. And they were very, very angry, and his friend pushed him a certain way. And the boy fell and struck his head and he died. Well, the boy’s friend was very frightened. So he pulled the body into a quarry, and hid the boy beneath a pile of large stones. Well, years went by and the boy’s friend became a young man. And one day, while he was drinking in the village, which, in his guilt, he did rather a lot of, he heard that a well was to be built near the forest from the stones in the quarry. Well, he ran to the quarry. He ran, and when he got there, he found there was almost nothing there. No rocks and no body. So, he ran to the well where the masons were completing their work. Had they seen anything unusual in the quarry? No, they had seen nothing. “Only stones,” they said. And they left him standing there alone, looking into the well as the sun went behind the mountains and the twilight set the whole world in a still, deep silence…
It’s 19 years to the day since my daughter died. She was six years old and she went out to play and she disappeared. [Sighing] And we found her the next morning. Down a stone well. You know, I climbed down to help her, but I slipped and I broke this leg. And while we were waiting for the rescue services to come and pull us out, she died in my arms. Shaking and crying. Her last seconds on this Earth were filled with terror for a stone golem.
This is the first painting I acquired, you know. And I keep it, maybe hoping that one night, the golem will come for me.