Absurdity in Human Relationships Essay

3179 Words13 Pages
Absurdity in Human Relationships Jacob Singer (Tim Robbins) wakes in a subway train from a nightmare filled with harrowing images from his time in the Vietnam War. He is holding a copy of The Stranger (a.k.a The Outsider) by Albert Camus. He puts on his glasses and his eyes fall on a poster reading “New York may be a crazy town, but you’ll never die of boredom. Enjoy!” What’s the connection between the Adrian Lyne movie, Jacob’s Ladder and Camus’ story? A particular dialog between the protagonist, Jacob Singer and a masked surgeon at a hellish hospital basement on a gurney will make the connection as clear as daylight: JACOB: Get me out of here! DOCTOR: Where do you want to go? JACOB: Home. DOCTOR: Home? This is your home. You’re dead. JACOB: Dead? No. No, I just hurt my back. I’m not dead. DOCTOR: What are you, then? JACOB: I’m alive! DOCTOR: Then what you doing here? JACOB: I don’t know. This isn’t happening. DOCTOR: What is happening? JACOB: Get me out of here! DOCTOR: There is no out of here.[1] Camus echoes the same idea in The Stranger. “There is no out of here.” The universe is indifferent to us. However, Camus did not believe in nihilism. He believed that humans can create meanings through their lives. Similarly, Jacob’s friend and chiropractor, Louis (Danny Aiello), cites the medieval Christian philosopher Meister Eckhartwhen he says, [1] “If you’re frightened of dying and holding 1. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0099871/quotes [240] on, you’ll see devils tearing your life away. But if you’ve made your peace then the devils are really angels, freeing you from the Earth.” We can’t choose whether or not we die, but we can choose how we view it. The central idea of existentialism is that existence precedes

More about Absurdity in Human Relationships Essay

Open Document