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Movie Reviews

On the Burden of Caretakers

I’m watching this movie called Heart of the Dragon. Jackie Chan plays a Hong Kong cop who’s also the sole caretaker of mentally disabled brother. It’s a pretty weird movie, but I thought it was interesting how much the movie focused on the how difficult it is to care for someone who’s unable to be responsible for their own well being. It affects your relationships, your career, and your own goals in life. You have to sacrifice a lot to live for someone else.

One things I liked in particular about the movie was how the different aspects¬† mental disability was handled by society. Jackie’s friends give him shit for wanting to abandon his brother, but they don’t really help take care of him. His lover resents him for spending so much time with his brother. His friends also give him shit when he tries to marry his girlfriend, because she’s going to have to pick up his baggage. Also, strangers don’t understand his struggles. People give him shit for not keeping an eye on his brother at all times,¬† but even when outsiders realize the brother has problems, they basically abuse him. Why? because society at large is uncaring. That’s pretty much a fact of life. Things are probably different in rural communities when everyone knows each other and are forced to relate by dint of not knowing anyone else, but when we get to cities, it becomes impossible for an individual to know everyone living there. We’re forced to compartmentalize and essentially write off a large portion of our neighbors. If I were living in a town of like twenty people, I’d obviously pay more attention to the struggles of Jeff, the one homeless guy in town. But living in NYC, I’ll pass by tens of homeless people and pay no never mind. Pros and Cons to everything.

 

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