You and me watching the jets go by
Saw this movie late one night when I was a teenager. It was made up of black and white stills, streaming along to the murmur of a placid narrator. The film was about a post-nuclear world, time travel, love but most importantly, memory and how powerful it can be. In this unique and beautiful sci-fi short, a single well-remembered moment has the capacity to alter lives. What is that memory? A man racing towards a jetty at the Orly airport where his beloved is watching the planes and possibly waiting for him.
While I'm sure Beck Hansen has seen Chris Marker's La Jetée, I don't think he intended this song as a soundtrack to that moment. Nevertheless, it works that way for me. His voice sounds so far away, so detached, it sounds like someone gone beyond caring for themselves but still not immune to horror. Their destruction is assured, it is happening, it may have already occurred, there's no point in crying about it. Music swirls around, an avalanche of drums and too-loud bass, mimicking a maelstrom of devastation. The vocal at the center stays calm, the only thing that matters is that they are not alone, they have someone to witness the disaster with. To hold their hand as they perish.
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