Henry Poole killing time at his house.

I'm not much for optimism. Not a big surprise,
I'm sure everybody knows that who has come to
this little blog on the Nile for any length of
time. And since hope is really a type of optimism
I guess I'm not much into that type of thing either.
But in fact I'm not totally devoid of either hope
or optimism. Let's just say that I only use such
occasionally and in small doses.

The other night I saw an excellent movie that
deals with the themes of hope and faith —
Henry Poole is Here (2008). The movie
stars Luke Wilson as a man who returns to his
childhood home to hide from the world. Trouble
is, the world doesn't always cooperate with
our wishes. In one scene after another he runs
across people who need to hope in something —
in this case the hope being a mysterious image
of "Jesus" that has formed on the stucco wall
of his house.

I won't go into details as it would spoil the
story. It is the pace of this movie and the little
things that happen and the various people Henry
meets from scene to scene that make the movie.

Back when I was in school I had a conversation
one afternoon with another student, an older
student like myself named Maureen, on the way
to one of our classes. It is difficult to avoid
matters regarding religion when you are studying
anthropology, given the prevalence of spiritual
beliefs world wide. And so somehow the existence
of god came up. Maureen told me she was an atheist.
I told her that I was not. "I'm a Deist" I said.
"I would rather believe in something that turned
out not to be true than to live the rest of my
life in a meaningless void."

Henry Poole is that type of movie. No matter
what your personal belief system, it is an excellent
and very moving tale of the human condition.

Oh and by the way — the music is excellent also.
In fact I just bought the soundtrack.