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Lovers of the Arctic Circle
January 21, 2008

This is the international/English name of a movie that my sister-in-law urged me to see.

I did.

I was stunned by it.

This is exactly the kind of film Americans refuse to make, perhaps because it's simply beyond them. Or because they're afraid a focus group will get bummed out.

I'm growing weary of that fear. I'm growing weary of the informal censorship that refuses to accept tragedy as a form. I'm weary of the phony optimism that parades itself as American exceptionalism. I'm weary of the breathless sociopathic bloodthirsty anxiety lurking just beneath the surface of American can-do hoo-hah.

This movie felt like an antidote. It felt like a breath of My-God-Real-Air.

In other words, it's not for the professionally juvenile, the paranoically upbeat, the dogmatically simplistic, the tearfully hopeful, the greedily formulaic, the sanctimoniously judgmental or the devoutly sentimental. It's for lovers. It's for everyone who remembers what it feels like to be mystified and enchanted and overwhelmed by life. It's for people who get it: They are going to die, and sometimes dreams are merely that. And yet life is no less mysterious, beautiful, valuable, or profound because it doesn't end up in Disneyland.

I'll say no more, so as not to spoil the film for you. Check it out here.

See it. Tell them Corbett sent you.

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