1.jpg

孩童教育是最容易引來爭吵的話題之一。例如前陣子有網路正義魔人批評某位媽媽冷天讓孩子穿太少,是虐童,結果媽媽出面澄清,她有她的理由。實際生活有太多這種「管很大」的例子,媽媽帶個嬰孩出門,外婆認為穿太少,奶奶認為穿太多,走個幾步,路人還要來嫌「怎麼沒戴帽子」、「女生怎麼穿這個顏色」,孩子再大一點則變成「怎麼讓兒子學編織」,吵到世界末日也吵不完。

4.jpg

教育真的很難,也沒有標準答案,《神奇大隊長》用獨特的故事設定,搭配類似《小太陽的願望》(Little Miss Sunshine)加上《天才一族》(The Royal Tenenbaums)組合而成的風格與態度,呈現父母面對教育決定的兩難。

一位反對資本主義與基督教、認同自學與獨立思考、要遠離現代墮落價值觀與美國消費主義的父親Ben(維果莫天森),在森林裡照顧與教育他的六名孩子(7至18歲),建構屬於他們的烏托邦。孩子們的母親Leslie生了病,離開他們住院接受治療,而她病情的發展使得丈夫與孩子一行人被迫離開森林,面對Leslie的家人。Ben與岳父Jack(Frank Langella)對孩子們的教育方式意見嚴重分歧,孩子們面對現代文明社會也極度不適應。

6.jpg

14.jpg

編劇兼導演Matt Ross是演員起家的,他就是在影集《矽谷群瞎傳》演Hooli執行長Gavin的那位,《神奇大隊長》是Ross第二部長片作品,本片執行上雖有些零星缺點,但它的內容本身實在有趣,有許多精彩對白,主題也很值得思考。

24.jpg

Ben的教育方式,乍聽之下是非常吸引人的,可以讓孩子成為文武雙全的罕見奇才。Ben什麼都教,動腦的部分無論是哲學、文學、法律、古典樂還是量子力學,全都屬於教學內容;身體方面則嚴格規定孩子們吃天然食物(「什麼是可樂?」「有毒的水。」),每天鍛鍊身體,還要能獵捕動物,徒手或持刀攻擊敵人等等。此外,有別於大多數父母認為小孩沒有面對某些現實的能力,選擇保護與隱瞞,Ben認為父母要實話實說,毫無保留,並且要求孩子們要能獨立思考、冷靜分析。片中有段戲非常精彩,是Ben與大女兒討論小說《蘿莉塔》(Lolita),在父親的引導下,做出非常精彩的分析,更妙的是旁邊聽著的七歲小女兒感到好奇,詢問父親什麼是強姦、什麼是性交,Ben則提供了史上最直白的性教育,毫無遮掩。

21.jpg

但這只是其中一個觀察面向。

22.jpg

孩子們的外公Jack,起先像個保守死板的傳統老頑固,但並不是,他對外孫們的考量其實也有道理。透過Jack的對照,Ben面對的難題漸漸明顯:他的孩子們文武雙全,但完全無法融入社會,父親教給他們的是抵抗這個世界,而不成為它的一分子。Ben雖自認教導孩子成為獨立思考的人,但卻常要求孩子無條件聽他的話。

23.jpg

但《神奇大隊長》終究並不是要給一個教育的答案,它明白其中的複雜性,因此Ben與Jack沒有人是真的錯誤的(或許也沒有人是對的)。Ben雖用自己獨特的價值觀強加在孩子身上,讓他們與社會格格不入,但不可否認的是,過著烏托邦世界生活的孩子們,的確聰明健康勇敢又快樂。只能說,有病的也許是社會,它像個大瘋人院,裡面的病人每天吃漢堡喝可樂打電動買一堆不需要的東西,搞不清楚自己家以外的事情,沒有獨立思考的能力,還覺得這些都沒問題,若是有個聰明健康的人跑來這樣的瘋人院裡,當然格格不入。那麼,是應該堅持不受瘋人院的汙染,還是學會面對社會就是一個瘋人院的現實,想辦法融入?人終究是群居動物,無法自外於社會,就算Ben可以,也不代表他有權為孩子做這麼大的決定。

19.jpg

因此,重點並非Ben與Jack誰對誰錯、哪種觀念較好,真正的核心精神,是妥協,是尊重。為了現實沒有那麼美好簡單而妥協,為了孩子應該要有選擇權而尊重。

***以下有雷***

本片另一個主題是道別。這群孩子會需要走出他們的烏托邦來到現實社會的原因,是他們的母親Leslie由於憂鬱症自殺了,但外公決定以基督教的方式將她下葬,違反她火化的遺願,並且由於外公認為Ben選擇的生活方式是Leslie去世的主因,因而禁止Ben參加喪禮。這些做法令孩子們很氣憤,他們希望母親能實現生前遺願,也想要見她最後一面。

18.jpg

當這群孩子終於成功將母親遺體帶回他們的露營車上,彼此陪伴著,那個畫面深深令我感動──那才是Leslie的家,她的最後一程就是應該這樣跟孩子度過。丈夫與孩子們為她辦的葬禮,既是告別,也是歡送離席的人,終於結束了此世的痛苦,展開下一段旅程。這背後的意念讓悲傷的事件添上了一絲暖意。

主角維果莫天森彷彿生來就該演這個角色,他帶著與眾不同的氣息,野性與溫柔並存,我完全相信他是有可能要求兒子以獵鹿來做為成年儀式的人。不過更令我驚訝的,是飾演他長子的英國演員George MacKay,不僅英國味徹底消失,對於角色許多細膩內斂的情緒也掌握得很好,他與莫天森的搭配,讓《神奇大隊長》的古怪劇本依舊踏實,傳遞的訊息也更有力量。《神奇大隊長》跟主角Ben一樣,能夠刺激其他人思考更多,相信大部分觀眾都能在其中得到新的啟發。

10.jpg

13.jpg

***
經典對白:
***

Nai: Let's dig. Otherwise she has to lie under that bullshit forever.

***

Kielyr: Okay, you can think that, but we don't make fun of people. Right, Dad?

Ben: That's right. We don't make fun of people.

Vespyr: Except Christians.

***

Rellian: What kind of crazy person celebrates Noam Chomsky's birthday like it's some kind of official holiday? Why can't we celebrate Christmas like the rest of the entire world?

Ben: You would prefer to celebrate a magical fictitious elf, instead of a living humanitarian who's done so much to promote human rights and understanding?

***

Ben: There's no cavalry. No one will magically appear and save you in the end.

***

Harper: Children don't drink wine.

Ben: In France and other countries, children drink small amounts of wine all the time. It's a digestive. It's not crack.

Nai: What's crack?

Ben: Crack is a crystallized, highly addictive derivative of the stimulant cocaine. In the mid-1980s, it accelerated the decimation of inner-city neighborhoods. Crackheads, some of them kids just like you guys, were killing each other over nothing, over their Nikes.

Nai: They killed each other for Nike? The Greek winged-goddess of victory?

***

Ben: [commandeering the eulogy from the minister] First of all, Leslie practiced Buddhism, which to her was a philosophy and not an organized religion. In fact, Leslie abhorred all organized religions. To her, they were the most dangerous fairy tales ever invented, designed to elicit blind obedience, and strike fear into the hearts of the innocent and the uninformed. To her, the only thing worse than death would have been the knowledge that her rotting flesh was to be trapped for all eternity inside a big box, and buried in the middle of a fucking golf course. Although the absurdity of being eulogized by someone that didn't even know her has exactly the kind of comedic flourish that Leslie would have cherished. If nothing else, she had a sense of humor. I want to read something to all of you, so you'll know what I mean.

[pulling out a piece of paper]

Ben: Leslie's last will and testament. And I quote, "in the event of my death, I, Leslie Abigail Cash, as a Buddhist, wish to be cremated. My funeral, such as it is, shall be a celebration of the life cycle, with music and dancing. After, it is my expressed desire that my ashes shall be taken to a nondescript location, preferably public and heavily populated. At which point my ashes, promptly and unceremoniously, are to be flushed down the nearest toilet." End quote. Now that's comedy.

***

Nai: [from the back seat] What does rape mean?

Ben: When a person, usually a man, forces another person, usually a woman, to have sexual intercourse.

Nai: Oh.

Ben: Who's hungry?

Kids: Me! Me!

Nai: What's sexual intercourse?

Ben: When a man sticks his penis in a woman's vagina... Everyone keep their eyes peeled for deer.

Nai: Why would a man stick his penis in a woman's vagina?

Ben: Because it can give them both pleasure. And because the combination of a man's sperm and a woman's egg can create a baby and continue the human race.

Nai: But that's where she pees.

Ben: Pee comes not from the vagina, but from the urethra, which is within the outer labia. But generally speaking, yes, that is where she pees... Everyone keep your eyes open for game of any kind.

***

Harper: I'm sorry it doesn't live up to your high standards!

Ben: I tell the truth to my kids. I don't lie to my kids.

Harper: Protecting children from certain concepts that they are too young to understand is not lying to them!

***

Ben: Mom needs to be in the hospital right now.

Vespyr: But you said hospitals are a great place to go if you're a healthy person and you want to die.

Zaja: You said Americans are under-educated and over-medicated.

Kielyr: You said the AMA are avaricious whores only too willing to spread their fat legs for big pharma.

Ben: All those things are true. But mom does not have enough of the neurotransmitter serotonin to conduct electrical signals in her brain.

***

Harper: Ben, you sound so ridiculous.

Ben: Is knowing how to set a broken bone or how to treat a severe burn ridiculous? Knowing how to navigate by the stars in total darkness, that's ridiculous? How to identify edible plants, how to make clothes from animal skins, how to survive in the forest with nothing but a knife? That's ridiculous to you?

***
文章標籤
創作者介紹

Lizzy's Film Reviews

Lizzy 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()