Do Phantasy and Reality collapse? – Live or let live?

Fighting for the good, experiencing love and romance, going on adventures and withstanding great dangers. Where do we have all those exciting things in our life. Who still lives this kind of a life?

In many western societies, at least as far as my experience goes, many individuals allow themselves such excitements only in one place anymore. And that is the cinema, or the home cinema/TV. While they long for the emotional ups and downs of a well made movie, they prefer to do so from the safe perspective of their chairs, using their empathic abilities to drain the fears, excitements and the happiness of the characters on the screen into their own heart.

And who has never felt the joy of being so emotionally touched when the final twist of a movie unfolds itself, and you cannot hold your tears anymore?

While we leave the cinema, this euphoric feeling might still hang onto us, while it eventually wears off in the coming days, leaving us longing for the next kick.

Being an Actor – The new Adventure?

But how would it feel to be on the other side of the camera lens? Isn’t the actor in a much more interesting position than the movie watcher? Isn’t what he does a real adventure? He travels to foreign and exotic locations, he learns new skills, he engages with the most experienced and exciting specialists in his field.

Lets assume for a movie it is necessary to mime a sword-fight. This means the actor has to learn how to fight with a sword. He will be thought how to fight. He will hold a most realistic replica, he will sweat out all his worries and fears during an exhausting fighting training, until he sinks to his knees in the evening, collapsing from the excitements of the day. Viggo Mortensen for
example, he is known to have taken his sword with him all the time during the shootings of the “Lord of the Rings”, whether on camera or not. He became so emotional attached to his role that he could not let go for a second.

Or take Jackie Chan, is he not doing all the Stunts, dangerous Jumps, unbelievable fighting scenes himself. As far as I know, he has injured himself many times, he is not playing the fighting hero, this is actually himself. He is doing this for real. He has dedicated his life to improve himself, his strength and his ability to move, to a level that is unbelievable and feels as if it was unattainable for many people on this planet. He knows the dangers and the fears before a jump, he has his heart pounding in excitement and terror.

But lets not underestimate the emotional part of playing a role. Isn’t it that many actors thrive to become so involved in the part of a play or movie that almost become that person for a moment or a while. They walk, talk, interact and live the life of an adventurer, hero, superhero for the time of the shooting. They feel through all the worries of the character, they laugh when there character laughs, the run when their character runs, the love when their character loves.

Have you ever played a good game with your friends, at a social occasion maybe, where you became so involved in the game that you forgot everything around you, that you immersed yourself and time just ran by? Isn’t this a real experience, even if it was only a game?

This is likely what an actor experiences when he immerses himself in a role. For a moment there is nothing else that exists.

Isn’t this a real adventure, isn’t this more than just doing a job for which one is payed?

Is a movie just a reflection of our World

But there is maybe even more to this. Is it not that the author of a story puts many of his lives experiences into a book or script? Isn’t it that his upbringing, the challenges in his life, his travels and adventures, everything he has heard and seen throughout his years contributes to the stories he comes up with.

Isn’t it that many books and stories are just a codified reflection of an author about his life and this world? So isn’t it that he just reflects his image of this world? And isn’t it that we enjoy diving into the world the author has created, unaware that it is actually the same world that we are living in? Maybe some years have passed, but still many old sayings and wisdoms remain true in our days.

But where does this lead ourselves? What are we and what are we doing here? If a movie is in a way just a reflection of reality, how come we believe the reflection in the mirror is more exciting than the present?

Is it that we have just turned a blind eye to reality? Isn’t it possible to look around us with the same curiosity and sense of surprises and adventures that we use to look at a movie?

Isn’t it just as exciting to explore an unknown place alone, as going to a yet unseen movie? Isn’t it just as exciting to talk to a stranger and listen to his stories from a country far away? Isn’t it exciting to feel your heart pounding while you walk over to a beautiful girl to find out how to engage in a conversation? Isn’t it satisfying to learn a new skill, to take a course in something you’ve never tried, meeting strange and new people from walks of life you’ve never known? Doesn’t it feel dangerous to go to a bar you’d “normally” would never go? Talking to people you would “normally” never talk? Isn’t there surprise, curiosity and adventure waiting for us around every corner?

Have fun,
-Richard

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