Thursday, September 1, 2011

If I were going to write an essay....

I love Pink Floyd. As I was reading The Tin Drum this summer I felt like there were maybe some thematic similarities between Pink Floyd the Wall and The Tin Drum. The Wall basically chronically a man's decent into madness and how that madness is perhaps a product of several influences; WWII, his mothers protectiveness/his inability to some extent to cope with adulthood and a recently ended romantic relationship, inability to cope properly with difficult emotions associated with post WWII era, drug abuse, the tedium of the school system, and the concept of sexuality verse love. Ultimately the protagonist Pink (who is based on Syd Barret, real former bandmate) hits the wall, is left unable to express emotion, insane, and trapped at the bottom of a metaphorical well with no means of escape. The movie explores one man's psyche and possible social/societal causes of his madness. I think the progression of madness, specifically the literal/metaphorical wall that builds brick by brick throughout the movie is thematically similar to the Black Cook/Black Witch in Oskar's life; it creeps up slowly then becomes inevitable and unavoidable. Also its interesting to note that both deal with enigmas associated with WWII, specifically fascist/communist symbols. Also thematically, surrealism is used in both works.
This video right here is reflective of the difficulties of growing up in a post WWII Europe and uses music, WWII enigmas, and surreal images to portray the moral confusion of the war and probably more specifically the Blitz (since Floyd's and English band.) The juxtaposition of a blue sky with a war stricken black sky full of bombs as well as soft uncertain vocals against a back drop of death and destruction make this one of the most enigmatic pieces in the movie. It depicts a white dove changing into the dark Nazi falcon and ripping the skin off Europe as a thousand falling bombs are changed into the white crosses that mark the graves of veterans. Then the Nazi symbol changes into something like a giant carbuncular Moloch-like worm that sits over Europe while little creatures with gas-masks for faces hide in the subway tunnels. There's a strikingly post-modern feel comes from Pink's trouble finding morality in the mess here depicted. (The movie is set, I think, in the 70s so this would be looking back - similar to Oskar as he looks back on his childhood experiences in WWII.) This link doesn't work anymore but I stuck a new one on the comment section... yeah it's Goodbye Blue Sky and it's an awesome song...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ln_oNw9LDPM&feature=related

3 comments:

sara pendleton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sara pendleton said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oEer5JnBd4s
- youtube got rid of the link I put on here... this is the same thing - anyways its good bye blue sky by floyd

christine said...

okay so i cant figure out how to start my own post so i'll say it here...

It completely shocked me to find out that Grass was a Nazi because he included elements of anti-nazism in his story.

a critic said, "Grass depicts the sins of Nazism through Oskar's recollections of the grotesque public and personal events that shaped his life and the lives of the people around him."

i completely agree. for example, his inclusion of the polish post office showed the nazis as "the bad guys". you can never judge a book by its cover...