Monday, June 2, 2008

The necessary ache

Like many others, I was struck by Trish Deitch's memories of director Sydney Pollack in The New Yorker.

An excerpt:

When Sydney, who died on Monday at the age of seventy-three, read a film script, he’d look for one word that would become what he called “the spine” of the story. The word that made up the spine of “Out of Africa,” he told me, was “home.”...

Finding the spine of a story like “Out of Africa” was important to Sydney for many reasons, the most important of which was that it led to what he called “the ache.” ... It is the ache of having one chance at deep love in a lifetime of shallow loves, and losing it too early. It is the ache of perfect, private union destroyed by terrible, worldly circumstance. For Sydney, the ache was about the way that the things we hold most dear always elude us.
That ache, that spine, is of course the center of life itself.

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