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Thomas Haden Church,
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This was a fine film and a good study of a benign narcissist. Alex has clearly suffered some major trauma, not just the recent witnessing of dead people trapped in a shipwreck under the Indian sea, but something primordial that we, and he, can only guess at. For this, despite his immaturity, he remains sympathetic. He is not the blowhard narcissist or manipulator, but rather the childlike one. He tries to make everyone love him, and in so doing, loses all their love. At the same time the film was ingenious in showing how those around him use his narcissistic vulnerability. They are attracted to his eternal youth, bring him into their lives, and spit him out when he is unable to follow through on their demands. In other words it takes two to tango. It is too simple to see the other characters as having been disappointed by an immature man. My heart really went out to this fragile man trying to negotiate the terrain of an emotionally tumultuous world. No wonder he wanted to flee to the dark and silent ocean bottom.
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