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But he notices things, and we notice them too: the matches, the water, the beer, and also the conversations of the people who ride the bus, and the pictures hung on the wall of his home, and the people in the bar around him. He writes poems about them in his spare moments: before starting his route for the day, on his lunch break sitting near Passaic Falls, or while sitting alone in the basement.
The resulting movie is a gentle fable, a small myth, and the rare philosophical film that captures the balance of work and art that Lonely black guy in Paterson New Jersey many artists — especially poets — have to navigate. On its surface, Paterson is a very simple tale, spanning just a week.
Paterson Adam Driver wakes up early every morning and spends a few minutes in bed next to his cherished Laura the marvelous Golshifteh Farahani. He eats a bowl of Cheerios and drinks a cup of coffee and fingers the box of matches on the counter. He grabs his tin lunchbox inside which is tucked a picture of Laura and walks to work, composing poetry in his head that he writes in a notebook while sitting at the wheel of the bus.
Once his shift starts, Paterson waves to the other drivers and listens to the bus passengers, who talk about the girls they like, the boxers and anarchists who lived in Paterson, what they did on the weekend, and he smiles. He eats his lunch by the waterfall and writes a little more. We hear his poetry and see it written across the screen. She bursts with creativity in all kinds of ways: She paints, she learns to play music, she makes gorgeous cupcakes, she invents dinners, she comes up with new ways to make their small home exciting.
In the evenings, Paterson takes their English bulldog Marvin out for a walk and stops for a beer at the local bar, tended by Doc Barry Shabaka Henley. Sometimes he stops along the way and listens to a rapper practicing in a laundromat or talks with guys driving by in a convertible who compliment Marvin and warn Paterson about dog-jacking like carjacking, but with a canine. In the bar, he talks with Doc about famous figures from Paterson or watches people play pool and chess.
Then he goes home and goes to sleep. Watching closely, there are some indications that this week is not like all the others. The first clue is that Paterson keeps seeing identical twins everywhere — old men sitting on a bench, girls on a bus, two men in the bar. Twins al all kinds of things in mythology around the world: sometimes impending doom, sometimes good luck.
But each moment is tinged with wry humor. One day, for instance, he sits down and talks to young girl who is waiting alone outside a warehouse for her mother and sister. When her mother and sister arrive, it turns out she is an identical twin, too. His increasingly desperate attempts to win her back are tragicomedy, but the movie and Paterson himself has both humor and compassion for him.
Because Paterson regards these people with the same kindness and interest as its main character, we too become interested in them and their world. And Paterson seems to find something to praise or encourage around every corner — partly because his idol is William Carlos Williamsthe New Jersey poet who wrote a five-part epic poem titled — you guessed it — Paterson. Williams, a master of imagism a movement in poetry that strove for clear language and precise description of imagesintended the poem to be a sort of documentary of the place, and published it as five books between and But Williams had another vocation: He was a physician, and chief of pediatrics at Passaic General Hospital for almost 40 years, a job requiring no small measure of attention and compassion.
Paterson is also a work of cinematic imagism. The meaning of the film is all in its deliberately drawn characters and images, each of which experiences the world in a different way.
Noticing each moment and weighing its ificance helps round out the meaning of Paterson. In constructing this sort of world, Jarmusch does a little gentle philosophical prodding of his own. Walking Marvin one night on his way to the bar, Paterson hears a rapper Method Man in a laundromat practicing in front of a spinning washer. In doing so, phenomenologists believe, we more fully grasp the nature of our existence, and gain the tools to live better lives.
The result is not angst. Their lives are, by most s, very small. Or did he become a poet because he learned it, or felt it intrinsically? Or was it learning to observe and write down feeling? In making PatersonJarmusch has pulled off the same feat. Our mission has never been more vital than it is in this moment: to empower through understanding. Financial contributions from our readers are a critical part of supporting our resource-intensive work and help us keep our journalism free for all.
Reddit Pocket Flipboard. Adam Driver plays a bus driver named Paterson in Paterson. Rating 5. Paterson: Adam Driver stars in a stellar movie a bus-driving poet in New Jersey. Next Up In Culture. Delivered Fridays.
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A Man and the City: The Perfection of Jim Jarmusch’s “Paterson”