The Man from Earth: Bring out your inner philosopher

The Man from Earth: Bring out your inner philosopher

Today when movies are mostly about beautiful locations, good looking actors telling pretty lines and creating a fantasy. There are a few movies that will make you question your beliefs. These movies are thought-provoking and with its storyline and characters, it plays a role of catalyst to trigger the inner philosopher inside us. The 2007 American drama sci-fi film, The Man from Earth is one such movie. The story about how the movie was made is as interesting as the movie itself. 

Writer Jerome Bixby started writing the screenplay of the movie in 1946 and completed it on his deathbed in April 1998. While it took 52 years to complete the screenplay, another 9 years to start the production, the whole film was shot in just 8 days.

Mostly shot inside a single room, the story of the movie revolves around a conversation between 8 characters of different professions, ranging from an anthropologist, a biologist, a psychologist, and a religious expert who come to bid farewell to their friend John Oldman. At the small farewell party, John’s friends curiously question him about the reasons for leaving. As John tries to explain his reasons, the conversation starts to turn into a mysterious interrogation as he reveals that he is a Cro-Magnon who has been around the earth for the last 14,000 years and relocates himself every ten years to keep others from realizing that he does not age. 

He first starts his story as a hypothesis but soon answers his colleagues’ queries as a first person perspective. His friends initially think that John is serving them one of his sci fi stories but as John gives empirical evidence about mortality, religious faith, historical events and their consequences they get more involved in the possible chances of the story. 

As the course of the conversation, each of his friends questions John’s story based on the knowledge from their own specific subject. But when John tackles every question thrown at him, the group soon start to find them in the dilemma whether to believe his story or neglect it. Things heat up when Dr. Will Gruber, a psychiatry professor, asks him about how he feels outliving everyone around him, and threatens John with a gun. Later it is revealed Dr. Gruber had just lost his wife.

The Man from Earth is an intriguing and thought provoking movie. With every passing minute of the screen time, it plays with the viewers’ intellect. It makes us rethink about the things we thought we knew till date. To some extent it becomes successful at changing our perspective about our beliefs too. However, the movie technically isn’t a marvel. Camera angles aren’t that great. We can hardly enjoy any background score, nor is it eye-pleasing on screen. But, the storyline of the movie along with the hard emotionless face of John Oldman portrayed by David Lee Smith does the trick and makes this unusual drama science fiction story one of the must watch movies. 

Give this movie a watch and let us know what you think a caveman would do in the present context if he was in quarantine

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