October 29, 2012
I've been struggling to write something about Liberal Arts for have a few days but have finally decided to forget trying to be coherent and instead just get down some thoughts.
Liberal Arts follows Jesse, a 35 year old living in modern day New York who returns to his rural college to visit a retiring professor. Jesse meets a 19 year old woman Zibby and they start a friendship. One of the strands is about the professor who is wondering what to do with his life after retirement. Another strand involves a depressed student who wants college to end. Zibby introduces Jesse to classical music (via a "mixtape" CD) and they start writing letters (on paper!) to each other, from New York to Ohio.
The young characters want to be old and the old(er) characters want to be young.
If you read a lot you should appreciate Jesse's total love of books and the scene where he lays into a vampire novel (presumably Twilight), exposing his literary snobbery, is really funny, but also thought provoking. Should we read books that aren't "good" and what does that mean anyway?
The film is about living in the now, not wishing for the past or the future. About not romanticising the past.
Liberal Arts is touching, witty and thoughtful indie film, the sort I rarely get to see, and I absolutely loved it.