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Fearless (BD) 1993 [Blu-ray]
When Max Klein (Jeff Bridges) finds himself facing imminent death as his plane hurls toward the ground, he finds inner calm and release from fear in his acceptance of his own unavoidable end. His panic erased, he helps other passengers to relax, and when he survives the impact, to escape. What follows is his difficult and complex journey back to emotional and spiritual equilibrium. Along the way he helps Carla (Rosie Perez), a woman smashed by the belief that her infant son's death in the accident was the direct result of her inability to hold him tightly enough, and alienates his wife, Laura (Isabella Rossellini), who tries desperately to understand what he's experiencing. Peter Weir's film is emotionally intense in an absolutely unsentimental way (very rare), and the complexity of the protagonist's experience is refreshing (if you don't mind feeling deeply). The handling of the crash sequences is chilling in an unsensational way, and the directing in general is a triumph of story-serving restraint. Not the usual Hollywood fare, but intensely rewarding for those who are tired of mind candy. --James McGrath --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Fearless is less an exploration of grief than it is simply an intense look at the entire world of someone whose life is nearly taken. Rosie Perez receieved an Oscar nomination for her great work as a fellow survivor whom Max befriends, but the movie veers away from melodrama and woe-is-me theatrics even with them, instead showing what comfort we find among those who share our trauma. And Fearless never always seems like it's like the movie it appears to be, proof again of Weir's incredible talent of looking at a theme from another angle (what made Master and Commander an intimate character drama and not a mindless actioner). So much territory is covered in the film, yet it never seems dense, and the catharsis at the end is a payoff like none other.Read more ›
Then, miraculously, if that word is appropriate, you survive the crash! Not only survive it: you become a hero for leading other survivors out of the wreckage. Interestingly, a lot of people would say "Thank God I'm alive," rather than curse God for killing those who didn't survive - it is the same God responsible for both, after all, but somehow, if you're God, your PR is bullet-proof.
Max Klein (Jeff Bridges) is the hero in Fearless; he believes, not that he was spared for some divine purpose, but that his survival demonstrates that there _is_ no divine purpose:
"When I was 13 my father died in front of my eyes. You know, we were outside of our apartment. I was throwing this softball up and down. Mom screamed, I missed the ball, turned to look. Dad was dead on the sidewalk. A little blood coming out of his nose, his legs were all twisted under him. Looked like somebody with a big hand just reached out and squeezed the life out of him... Couldn't figure that out. He was a religious guy, hard-working, kind to my mother and my sister... I didn't know why God killed my Daddy. There was no reason to. So, I decided there was no God...
"People don't so much believe in God as they choose not to believe in nothing. Life and death - they happen for no reason. We think that people are born because their mothers wanted them a lot or because God needed another home-run hitter for the Giants.Read more ›
Probably the most important aspect of the film, though, is the treatment of the fear of death and the difficulties involved in having "cheated" death. The movie makes us ask ourselves, "How would I feel if I survived something that should have killed me?", and of course, there really is no answer. How would I look at the world after surviving a plane crash? How petty and unimportant would all of my everyday trivia become? How difficult would it be to be around people who still found the trivia to be important? Max is faced with life after having cheated death, and life no longer makes as much sense to him now that his fear of death--his fear of losing things--is gone.
The greatest strength of the film, though, is that it doesn't give us a condescending view of the trivial things that we see as important, but treats with respect those things that give meaning to our lives and help us to go on. And all this is accomplished in a very watchable way, with characters that we can care about and a story that keeps our interest with seemingly little effort. This is well worth the time it takes to watch it--several times. Hopefully, they'll release a widescreen version someday.
Most recent customer reviews
Masterful director Peter Weir helms this story of a man who survives a plane crash, and hangs on to his newfound fearlessness to help others, while basically destroying himself. Read morePublished on July 2 2004 by Michael Butts
"Fearless" is one of those great movies I decided to watch without any expectations. And I was absolutely floored, not only by the storyline, but by the letter-perfect... Read morePublished on April 23 2004 by R. Janis
Fearless will make you weep but most of all it'll make you think. Career performances from Jeff Bridges and Rosie Perez.
NEED WIDESCREEN VERSION DVD!
Without going into any deep philosophical ponderings, let's just say that if you do not come to the end of this film without being emotionally gutted from head to toe, there's... Read morePublished on Feb. 6 2004 by TommyT
What happens when a man is fearless at the moment of his death? Fearless is the dramatization of the inner conflict created from facing tragic death and living through the... Read morePublished on Feb. 4 2004 by Jason Kantz
So emotionally raw that that watching this movie will exhaust you. Be prepared to live through a plane crash. Peter Weir is a genius.Published on Jan. 30 2004 by Jean
One of the greatest films ever made, hands down.
Delves deeper in philosophy and normal life than ever before. Read more
"Fearless" begins with one of the best opening sequences ever: a dishevelled man steps between rows of corn in a cornfield. Read morePublished on Dec 4 2003 by Rich Stoehr
...see this film for it's haunting score and the film's coda, which, in my opinion, has the most memorable plane crash sequence in film. Absolutely emotionally devastating. Read morePublished on Nov. 30 2003 by E. FREYMUTH