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There’s a scene in Carol, the new film about lesbian lovers in 1950’s America, where one of the two leads, Therese, a clerk at a department store, joins her boyfriend and his pal in the projection booth of a movie theater that is screening the classic (though it was new at the time period of the film’s action) Sunset Boulevard.
The pal, who has seen the movie before, is taking copious notes because, as he says, he wants to record the difference between what the characters are saying and what they are really feeling and thinking (for those in the industry, this is often called subtext).
This is a conversation that I found to be of prime pertinence to the film because, with rare occasions, none of the characters ever, ever says what they really feel or think.
But of course, this is 1950’s America, the Eisenhower era where there was a lot bubbling underneath everyone’s skin, but it had yet to burst through to the surface as it soon will when the social revelation comes in the 1960’s. Continue reading →