在即将来临的金融风暴中，年轻的市场交易员杰克·摩尔（Jack Moore）问他的导师路易斯·扎贝尔（Louis Zabel）：“我们要失败了吗？”
We messed up, but we’re not bad people
Movie “The lovers”
Recommended by a friend of mine, I watched a movie titled while finishing my four-mile run on the treadmill at the Lifetime Fitness center near my home last Saturday.
A long-married and completely dispassionate couple Michael and Mary are having long-standing affairs with others. They do their best try to maintain some kind of peaceful family life in anticipating their only son, Joe and his girlfriend Erin’s visit.
Michael’s lover, Lucy, a ballet teacher, is increasingly frustrated at Michael’s inaction and indecisiveness when she pressures Michael to break up with Mary. Michael assures Lucy: “My son and his girlfriend are coming to visit us. This is his first visit in years. Let them have a nice stay. After they leave, I will break with her, and we will be together. you will regret, you will apologize to me then” said Michael to Lucy. Lucy seems not convinced. Those unpleasant discussions negatively impacted their love relationship. so much that at times, Michael avoid taking her calls. When Michael visits Lucy at her house, she acts willfully. I would say she is a bit of hysterical.
Mary’s lover is Robert. Their love affair seems move enjoyable than Michael and Lucy’s. You will see them more attached to each other-- smiling, having drinks together, dancing together-- they are much more passionate towards each other. You can sense the love between them. However, Robert emphatically demands Mary to break up the marriage and move forward with him. Mary promised that she would do so soon, maybe during their son’s visit.
While having extramarital affairs themselves, Michael and Mary are both highly suspicious the other is cheating. To ease their spouse’s suspicion, they engaged in sex activities.
Finally, their son and his girlfriend are about to come, Michael and Marry go to a grocery store to buy groceries for the family dinner. Without Mary’s knowledge, and without her consensus, Robert approaches Michael and tells him: “when your son is here, she will break with you, she will leave you for good.” Before Mary walks back to Michael, Robert disappears.
The family dinner looks good and the couple looks happily living together. Knowing the reality of their marriage condition, Joe cannot believe what he is seeing.
On the following morning, Mary goes to Robert. He issued an ultimatum, so Mary made her final decision. When she is back from “walk”, she and Erin took a ride to a mall for some shopping, while Michael and Joes prepares dinner.
On their way back, Lucy approaches their car and hissed at Mary. Knowing what is going on, Mary dropped Erin at home, and went somewhere to have some quiet time.
When seeing Erin back home alone, Michael asked: “Where is Mary?” Erin only could say “She is out.” Michael repeated: “She is out.”
When Joe found Mary did not return home with Erin, he turns his anger towards his father. “You’re a cheating piece of shit” Joe tells his father.
Sitting in her car while the sun sets, Mary rehearses her line as if she were talking to her son, Joe: “I know you’re mad at him, but I made mistake, too. I am sorry, you’ll never know how sorry I am. We messed up, but we’re not bad people.”
Then, she put herself together and drives home.
In the family room, the final moment came. Joe, once more, turns his anger towards his father. Mary demands Joe to sit down…
Mary starts her line; Michael sadly closed his eyes in silence.
Joe interrupts Mary: “You were planning on telling me this? You were waiting until I got here? So, why all the show? why are you acting like you’re happy together?”
Mary replied: “Okay, we weren’t pretending….”
Joe, stops Mary: “You are not going to tell me this, ‘Cause none of it is true.”
“You are same as him, you’re the same hypocrites.” Joe says with deep sadness.
He then stands up and tells Erin, “We are out of this place…” and charges upstairs towards his room. Erin follows him.
Throughout this interaction between Mary and his son, Michael does not say a word.
After Joe went upstairs, Mary turns to Michael for help: “You got to do something, if he leaves like that, we will not see him again…”
Michael looks at Mary and slowly says to her “But he is right.”
In his room, Joe is crying in Erin’s arm.
Sitting on the staircase, Mary cries without voice.
In the family room, Michael cleans up the mess Joe created, and sitting in front the piano he had not touched for years. he started to play and sing:
I never thought I’d miss you.
Half as much as I do
and I never thought I ‘d feel this way
The way I feel about you
As soon as I wake up every night everyday
I know that it’s you I need to take the blues away
Must be love
It must be love
Nothing more, nothing less?love is the best
How can it be that we can say so much?
And bless me, baby
Bless the bees
And the birds
When things eventually settle, Michael moved to Lucy’s house, Mary moved to Robert’s house, Joe and Erin are having their own life. Life goes on for everybody…
One morning, after kissing Lucy goodbye, on the way to his car, Michael dialed Mary’s phone and left message:
I am sorry, I can’t stop thinking about you. Any chance we can find some time during the day?
On the other end, after listening to Michael’s voice mail, Mary happily put down the phone and walks towards the conference room to start her day.
Throughout the movie, a few lines touched me:
Joe to Michael: You’re a cheating piece of shit! you know that?
Michael: I know.
Joe to Mary: You are same as him, You’re the same hypocrites!
Michael to Marry: He is right
Yes, nobody is superior than others in term of moral standard. You may not have done what they did, that does not mean your moral standard is higher or better than theirs.
“We messed up; we are not bad people” as Mary said.
You did not mess up, maybe that is your luck. Maybe your married life is not that bad, good for you. Maybe your marriage life is not good, but you just have not met another one who opens your heart. That could mean you have not gotten the opportunity to mess up.
“We are messed up.” Who is not? Another movie line comes to my mind. It is in
With an impending financial storm, the young market trader Jack Moore asked his mentor, Louis Zabel:” are we going under?”
Louis replied: “That was a wrong question”
Jack then asked: “What is the right question?”
Louis said, “Who is not?”
I figure what Louis is trying to say is: Due to the leverage ratio in the investment portfolio, everybody could go under if his or her weakness is exposed.
Maybe your moral standard did not go under (in other’s eyes) , that is because your weakness is not exposed yet.
Human nature is selfish. When both Michael and Mary engaged in extramarital affairs, they thought that is justifiable due to their bad marriage quality. But when they found the other party is also cheating, they demonstrated jealousy and anger.
Michael had a date with Lucy, he called Mary and said he would be working late.
At the other end, Mary is having a drink in the bar with Robert.
Hearing the music in the bar, Michael asked Mary where she was. Mary replied she would be working late too and in a Chinese restaurant having a bite and then go back to work.
Guess what, after that phone call, both of them abandoned their dates and rushed back home to find out where the other party is.
They did not want to break their marriage, because they did not have desire to remarry. They just wanted to have some kind of affair to complement their marriage life.
None of them thought that “I should end this marriage before starting a new relationship”, but that is what we often tell others. “you should do this; you should do that…” Morality is used to tell others; to oneself, self-interest comes first.
But, the ones they are in love with are single. Their new partners forcefully demand them to break up the marriage and move forward with their new partner. So much so, they exposed them behind their back. Once more, it proves the selfishness of human nature.
At the end of the movie, Michael and Mary demonstrate the desire to get together.
Can they? Will they? What about Robert and Lucy? To start another extra marital affair.
There are more questions than answers.
Life is complicated, Love is “I want”: I want to be with you, I want to love you, I want to kiss you, I want to sleep with you.
Once it become “I should” or “you should”, the meaning of the words changed. “Since I am her husband, I should do so and so”, “since she is my wife, she should do so and so.” as you can see, ”should” has nothing to do with love, It has everything to do with marriage.
You could say Marriage without love is immoral, love without marriage is torture. You also could say: Love without marriage (extra marital affair)) is immoral, marriage without love is torture. It all depends on how you see it. As I said, life is complicated.