The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a movie I added into my mental list of must-see films since I saw the trailer.
Walter Mitty is a Negative Asset Manager for LIFE magazine and he’s been working there for 16 years. Upon a restructure of the company, Mitty finds himself responsible for the last issue’s cover. He is told to develop negative #25 from Sean O’ Connell, a world traveler, but it is missing from the negative roll that was sent. Mitty ends up chasing after O’ Connell in order to locate the missing negative, forcing Mitty to “embark on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined” (IMDb).
This film is like a beautiful indie music playlist transformed into cinematography. The visuals in the film are absolutely stunning, just like the trailer. I could tell the film tried to make some connections to life in general, since one of the themes was to “chase after your dreams”.
Mitty is a daydreamer. He zones out often into scenes of romance, heroism, and action in which he is the main character. Mitty daydreams of saving a dog from a burning building, telling his boss off in the elevator, and his co-worker falling in love with him. I see these daydreams as an escape from the gray monotone life he leads. Mitty’s daydreams were interesting because they represented things we want to happen in our everyday lives. As Mitty begins to travel and expands his world, these daydreams occur less and less. It feels like his daydreams were his hidden desires for adventure. Instead of daydreaming of things to happen, of places to be at or see, Mitty finds himself living his daydreams and making them a reality. It’s kind of like chasing after your dreams, except it’s chasing after your daydreams.
The small person.
Amazing footage throughout the film. I loved the scenes at the beginning of the tall office buildings and people pacing around in black suits and ties. The background always looked so clean and gray scale, the common way to depict the modern city life. In a lot of scenes, people were small figures compared to the landscape. The shot always seemed to focus more on the big train than the small people stepping into it, the big rolling mountain tops as Mitty bikes along the empty road or the big field of snow as 3 little shadows hike through the skies. In a movie with the notion to follow your dreams and live life, it was meaningful how it always seemed to capture how beautiful the world is and how insignificant you actually are in comparison to the great wonders.
It was quirky how the magazine was titled LIFE. Covers of world travelers on each issue lined the hallways of the company Mitty works at. The red posters and the logo scattered around the blue shades of the company building struck a contrast, especially as Mitty runs past all these posters when he decides to embark on his journey. For Mitty to embark on this journey in order to save his job at LIFE magazine, it was as if he was embarking on his own personal journey to find the meaning of life and what he wants from his own.
I listen to quite a bit of indie/alternative, actually. Therefore, the soundtrack for this movie is totally my type of tunes.
Heart’s on fire, leaving all behind you
Dark as night, let the lightning guide you
– Step Out by Jose Gonzalez
The ups and downs.
Unexpected things happen to Mitty the minute he leaves his comfort zone. Things become exciting, unpredictable, and touching. The movie allows the viewer the travel through these moments in subtle ways mostly through imagery. Mitty experiences character development and grow in bravery through moments, not really through exchanged words. Even when you feel like you’ve lost it all, life gives you a surprise at the end.
To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, draw closer, to find each other, and to feel. That is the purpose of life.
Man, I really want to go somewhere far away soon. There are places I want to see and feel too.