Monday, March 14, 2011
The Talented Mr. Ripley and "The Metamorphosis"
Over the break, I watched "The Talented Mr. Ripley," a great movie starring Matt Damon and Jude Law. Matt Damon plays Mr. Ripley, a complex character who pretends to be a Princeton student and is sent to Europe to bring Dickie Greenelaf, a rich and spoiled millionaire playboy, back to his father. Mr. Ripley fails to pry Dickie from Italy, where Dickie is living in luxury without any thoughts of coming back to America. As Tom stays in Italy with Dickie, he begins to crave his lifestyle and starts to emulate his behavior. Tom, who lies about himself from the beginning, begins to shift between personas, eventually assuming Dickie's identity. When we talked in class today about Gregor undergoing an identity crisis, I thought of Tom Ripley and his transformation, although his was a voluntary one. Gregor's conversion affects his thoughts, actions, and the lives of the people around him, just as Ripley's personality shifts damage those around him and especially himself.
Can you all think of any other movies or things we have read this year that relate to identity crises?