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Movies to watch before you die: The case of Requiem for a dream

As a film lover, I don't see movies as a mean to pass my time. In my interpretation, a movie is a combination of a lot of art forms into one, which can indulge one's feelings and alter his perspective in life. Movies can be lessons for life. Meaning that I want you to take some lessons from this small blog as well. In the first part of Movies to watch before you die, we are going to explore Darren Aronofksy's classic Requiem for a Dream.

If you claim that you do not have any idea what this movie is, I can promise you that you have gotten in touch with at least one part of this masterpiece; its soundtrack. Just listen to this and get back to me.

Plot: The plot simoultaneously follows four protagonists:

  • Ellen Burstyn as Sara Goldfarb

  • Jared Leto as Harry Goldfarb

  • Jennifer Connelly as Marion Silver

  • Marlon Wayans as Tyrone C. Love

Each of the character has their own unique dream of where their life should be.

Sara is a lonely old widowed housewife who spends most of her time infront of the TV. She is suddenly called by a mysterious number and is told that she won a random contest regarding the next participant of her favourite TV show. Sara sees this as an opportunity to reclaim her own life. Furthermore, she sees an old picture of her son's Harry's graduation in which she wears an old red dress that provides her with all sorts of memories. In her disappointment, the red dress does not fit her anymore, which begins her own journey to lose weight just to fit in the dress and appear on the mentioned TV show. This red dress however, is much more than this. It gives a lonely person a purpose, a reason to wake up from bed everyday. It just shows that loneliness is a different place from being alone; loneliness can hurt a person severely by attempting to latch on a single reason for existing. Just take a look at this chilling speech by Ellen Burstyn.

Moreover, Sara becomes obsessed with losing weight just to fit in her old dress which as seen from the speech, represents so much more.

Harry and Marion are a couple in love who want to make it big by opening a small business while their friend Tyrone wants to escape his life from hard cirmustances while holding on the promise he made for his mother; he is going to make it. They all attempt to get in their own version of Utopia by gettng a pound of heroin and sell it for funding. However, all the characters' lives spirals out of control pill by pill, shot by shot.


Requiem for a Dream comes from a time where movies were not afraid to be brutal. While a lot of people claim that Requiem for a Dream is a movie about drug addiction, I think that is much more than that. It is a movie about psychological addiction, the heavy burden of loneliness, the beauty standards set by society from TV or movies and more.

It is a movie that will make you uncomfortable, unsettled and most importantly empathetic. The characters of the movie are diverse, showing you that everyone could get down to this rabbit hole. Everyone can fall victim to addiction, in any form that may be.

The cinematography and the scriptwriting are simultaneously beautiful and hair-raising since they give you an insight look at the spiraling that is being foreshadowed. The contrast between the early stages of the movie and the final moments are just staggering, showing the viewer how easy it is for things to get all messed up.

You know that it is coming but you don't want it to happen. It is like looking at a car accident happening and not being able to turn your head away. And when that happens, Aronofsky forces you to watch every piece of gruesome detail since the movie is not afraid to make his viewers uncomfortable. I mean, that is the whole promise about a movie about drugs and addiction.

In conclusion, Requiem for a Dream is a journey into your darkest desires. While life may be better numb, the consequences showcased here are severe. This movie will have you looking at your screen in awe even after the credits roll. And I mean its better than the old school anti-drug ads.

If you decide to take a watch on this movie, send me a message and let's have a discussion about it.

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