Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Ezra Miller in "We Need to Talk About Kevin"

Ezra Miller stars in We Need to Talk About Kevin

Kevin’s a suburban teen with a difference.  He doesn’t just have a bad attitude; he seems to lack a soul.   We’re not told what troubles him,  we are simply presented with a fait accompli, a bad child without a conscience, and with a thirst for mayhem.   His frightened mother, played by Tilda Swinton, looks the other way until she can’t, and one day Kevin shoots up the school and then himself.   The character of Kevin is tied to previous cinematic young hellions, The Bad Seed’s Rhoda and The Good Son’s Henry.  Eighteen-year-old Ezra Miller, who is a thoughtful and smiling eighteen year old in the flesh, plays Kevin.

You did such a great job.  I wanted to wring your neck!

Great, perfect! The ideal goal! Optimum response.

Did you ever think about how someone could be like that?  Was Kevin born a monster, was he the result of bad parenting?

What I found in those considerations was a wide web of answers.  The notion of a singular answer is often sought after in these stories and scenarios.  If you seek it you will find, it you will always find a singular answer if you want it.  You can make something up.  But really the answer to questions involving the human condition and human experience are always going to be vast very complex.  It seems like humans have been bouncing from one pursuit of answering questions about one singular note notions for a very long time, to no avail. Continually to no avail.

It’s too easy.

We really want to feel it, people want to feel normal.  This pursuit of this standard of normality is actually dangerous because it doesn’t exist.  So you’re chasing after a fictional notion and in the process, never accepting your actual self.  Which is from moment to moment, all you actually need.

Your character, the child who’s bad to the bone, is relatively rare in film.  

 It’s this notion of pure, unbridled evil coming from some sort of extra-terrestrial sort of preternatural source, as opposed to what is taboo and undiscussed is the fact that just a kid can be horrible, a human, not a changeling, not a demon child, not the son of Satan, not Damien,  just a human being.  A human being born of very human parents and is very human the whole way through.  That’s what makes it kind of untouchable.  When these stories surface in the real world, we don’t confront them in an honest way either, no matter what they are.

Oh yes, “he was into drugs or pornography or was bullied”.

Yeah! He liked rock and roll. 

You and Tilda are a great mix. What did she do for you?

Everything.  Everything.  I owe so much to her that I will never be able to repay her because she has everything she needs already.   Being asked to work with John C. Reilly, Tilda was like being asked to join the band that Jimi Hendrix was going to form with Miles Davis before he died.  That kind of super group.  And here I am some kind of amateur kid running around smoking weed on stoops and all of a sudden, I’m asked to jump onto this dream crew.  Not your standard day for New Jersey born, angsty teenager.  So it was like being courted by like a coven of angels or something.

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