movies, film, romance, love, dark romance, suicide, orlando bloom, kirsten dunst, triggers

Elizabethtown (2005)

TRIGGER WARNINGS: Suicide, death, self-harm.

One of Orlando Bloom's early film projects, as Drew a shoe designer. Young, trying to make his mark on the world. He takes a gamble on a design and it fails, spectacularly. Losing the company billions, he is fired for that and they hold back telling the press about the issue while they try to deal with the issue he created. Leaving him broken, and a mess. Without anything to hold onto, humiliated by what he accidentally did and the loss of the career he loved. He decides to end his life.

He takes every single personal item out of his home (lamps, clothes, computer, everything), throws it in a dumpster on the street. Stripping down his exercise bike to hold a knife. So that he can just cycle and the blade will hit him in the chest, end game. He is about to do the deed, and his phone rings on the desk across from him. He ignores it, waiting til it stops calling so he can try again. Soon as it stops it rings back, several times. Frustrated, Dean picks up the phone. It's his sister, he tries to get rid of her a few times, but she won't leave. Turns out, his father is dead and he is needed to travel across the country to take his father's blue suit over there. As well as make the funeral plans with the family there, as his mother isn't fit to fly.

As he looks at the knife, it falls from where it is gaff taped. He knows, however, he feels, that he is needed and he will have to adult a little longer. He looks out the window, people are stealing all the stuff he left on the street. It is too late to do anything about it, so he gets up and tries to do what he needs to. Knowing, that when he gets home, he will finish his plan.

On the plane, as it is empty. The stewardess (Claire: Kirsten Dunst) upgrades him to first class. Chatting to him, offering him advice on how to get around, maps, information, even her phone number in case he needs anything. After seeing the suit he is carrying, working out he is going back to a funeral. Drew (badly) manages the drive from the airport to his old home even with the instructions. Drawn back into full on family life, which he has been avoiding for years to be at his work. He finds it hard to cope with everything, worst of all because his hotel is full of a wedding party.

Depressed he starts ringing nad leaving voice messages to everyone he knows back home, just needing someone to talk to. When he runs out of numbers, with no reply. He finds Claire's number, calling her. Of course, this is the point everyone rings back at once. Leaving him jumping from call to call trying to deal with everything. Before he can come back to talk to Claire. Talking to her for hours, about nothing and everything. She starts to help him with everything, after impulsively deciding to ditch her next flight to see him. They become friends, as she starts to reteach him how to live.

He admits to her the issue with the shoe company, and that it will soon hit the news that he is the most useless person alive. She ends up walking away, after convincing him to take a road trip back home to rediscover himself. A road trip that she has mapped out for him. She sees him briefly at the funeral, leaving him to his own devices about what to do and where to go. And if, they will have a future together or not.

This was another one of my random explores of Netflix late one night. I always like angsty storylines like this. It didn't look great, but I thought I'd give it a chance. It was well worth that. Orlando gives us a deep character, genuine pain, depression. He is extremely believable as a man at the end of his rope. The scene where he sets up the suicide bike is so well scripted. Kirsten is well known for her peppy characters, which sometimes come across just a little bit shallow/wanting. Does that lady ever age?! Here, both leads play against each other perfectly. Bringing a beautiful love story, that you really aren't sure whether or not it will have a happy ending. In some ways, I'd have liked to strip out a lot more of the background characters so we could have focused more on the interaction between these two. My only huge gripe with the movie is that a low-level person would never have been given a free range with so much money to make the issue as troublesome as it was. Losing billions.

All in all, highly enjoyable even with the dark themes. 7/10