Last night we sat down to watch the movie Hancock about the superhero gone wrong. I am writing this blog for those who have seen the film already and will probably mention things that may be considered spoilers to those who have not yet seen the film. Consider this fair warning not to read on, but feel free to return after you've seen the movie and let know what you think.
The concept of Gods evolving into angels and then becoming superheroes with the times was a fascinating view on mankind's inability to find the extraordinary amidst his own kind, but what really struck me was the commentary on relationships. This is my own personal interpretation, and not something I read elsewhere so it is riddled with speculation and opinion. I am not claiming that what I am about to discuss was in any way intended as a message by the writer or director of the film.
During the film Hancock becomes associated with a PR man named Ray and his family after saving he saves Ray's life. Upon meeting the Ray's wife, Mary, one gets the impression that Mary is somewhat disgusted by Hancock, and rightly so considering the lifestyle he's led. She warns her husband not to get involved with Hancock, but Ray has plans that he is sure will change the superhero's life and image.
After Hancock begins to turn himself around, he tells Mary and Ray his story. He woke up in a hospital with nothing but a pack of bubble gum and two movie tickets in his pocket. He'd had his skull cracked, and amnesia set in. Later the next day he discovers that Mary knew him at that time. She at first claims that she is his sister, but later she tells the truth. They were paired together. All of the gods were paired when they were born, but when drawn together they become mortal and die. Together they had survived more than three thousand years, and Mary had left him in the hospital that day so he could live.
After a showdown with the movie's bad guys, both Mary and Hancock are mortally wounded in the same hospital and the only way to save their lives is if they are separated. With every ounce of his being, Hancock flees the hospital, bringing Mary back to life and restoring both of their powers. They can only be immortal heroes when they are apart. Only by sacrificing their desire to be together can they function as heroes.
This made me think about how heavily many people in today's society rely on relationships. From the minute teenage girls enter into the fifth grade they are already planning out which boys they want to spend the rest of their lives with. Many graduate high school and enter into relationships immediately. Some wait until they finish college and enter the workforce, but it seems as if everyone is searching for their soulmate all the while.
Once the soulmate is found, many set aside dreams they once had and never pick them up again. They sacrifice their wings, or at least he dreams that once inspired their souls to fly, and sink into relationship mode. Soon there's a wedding, a house, possibly kids, a dog, a white picket fence... but no more dreaming. But what if we knew our soulmate was out there. Like a guarantee on the future we could set out to live our lives to the fullest potential unhindered by the restraints and confinements of love. Through sacrificing that bit of time with our soulmates, we would really find out who we are and what we are capable of becoming. We would get in touch with our true selves. There would be no fear of loneliness because we would entrust the universe to bring us together when the time was right.
Imagine if you managed to fulfill your plans and goals before settling into relationship mode. The wanderer would be quelled, the dreamer fulfilled. Wouldn't that time with our soulmates be all the more satisfying? There would be less divorce, less dissatisfaction with our relationships. In knowing ourselves fully, we would take the time to know our soulmates and there would be no strange surprises.
Maybe that's crazy. I know that I wouldn't give up my soulmate for anything. He's been my rock, my support system and my best friend through many long and difficult trials, but I know even he has wondered what wonders we might have achieved in this world if we had met after we'd had time to pursue the dreams that fueled our souls.
There are others who believe that without their soulmate they could not have gotten to the place they are today, or become the wonder they are now, and maybe that's possible too. Some of us need a boost, a little rocket-fuel to shoot us into the stars, and maybe the rocket fuel comes from the love and support of one's soulmate.
There's no way of knowing. If you've taken one path, you can only speculate what the outcome of the other might have been, but in the film the suggestion seemed to implicate that while they were soulmates, they were more valuable to the world if they were apart and focusing their energy on mending the world and its people.
Probably nonsense, but it was a nice bite of food for thought while I was in the bath tonight.