Film, an analog of human experience, often explores ideas of “knowing” in ways that we cannot, will not, or choose not to explore. We want to know how to understand a great man’s life and we want to understand our own lives. We want to find truth in the stories we hear and the stories we tell. We want to know what the meaning of our lives is and where that meaning derives from. We want to know where our lives, our consciousness, begin and end and likewise those of our neighbor.
Citizen Kane searches for the meaning of one word and hopes to find the meaning of an entire life. With the search for a kidnapped child, The Searchers follows the search for a man’s humanity. The Usual Suspects questions the whole idea of narrative. In Being John Malkovich, we spend some time in the other guy’s … shoes. And what if I get stuck in my own shoes? There we have The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.
Read more in David’s blog post Knowledge and the Search for Meaning in Five Classic Films.
“I don’t think any word can explain a man’s life. No, I guess Rosebud is just a … piece in a jigsaw puzzle … a missing piece.”
– Jerry Thompson in Citizen Kane