To this day, I’m not sure what the title of the pairing of words “collateral beauty” even means; all I know is that collaterals have to do with loans, and beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. The movie Collateral Beauty hit the theater a little more than a month ago and has had quite a variety of reactions.
It was a quiet evening at home when I decided to bring my mom to the movies with me to see it. The main reason I wanted to go is my friend Shane O’Brien ’18 had his dominoes (found at http://poly.rpi.edu/s/eaxkm) featured in it. He never mentioned how important the dominoes were to the whole film, but after eight months of waiting, I was ready to find out!
And right before my eyes, the dominoes were in the opening of the film and the first scene, in which the main character Howard, played by Will Smith, is seen in his office toppling over a dominoe set-up spanning many tables. Instantly, I was excited to watch the movie and explore the connection of dominoes and this so called “collateral beauty.”
The concepts of love, death, and time were shortly introduced as Howard writes letters to these abstract nouns. This part is where the movie gets a little weird and takes a twist in which the abstract objects become concrete, or given to actual people who then encounter Howard to discuss what love, death, and time actually mean to him. Very strange; yet very interesting.
The movie continues to play out with an ending that is so unreal, it had my mom walking out of the movie theatre wanting to sue someone in Hollywood.
One thing that you have to remember when watching this movie is that it’s a movie. It’s made up! As the proverb goes, keep your mind open to new ideas. It’s just made to be watched in approximately two hours, related to your own life when watching it, then that’s it. Maybe even watch it again in a few years to come. The hateful reviews are a bit brash, if I do say so myself. To everyone rating it so low and hating it, you’ve watched it, congrats, now time to move on.
Finally, it was awesome seeing someone I know in the credits and being the last one left in the room to applaud the assistant domino artist.