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A Single Man

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Cast
Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Nicholas Hoult, Matthew Goode, Jon Kortajarena, Paulette Lamori, Ryan Simpkins, Ginnifer Goodwin, Teddy Sears, Paul Butler
Released
2009
mescaline
Spoiler alert
Blog entry

In a dream college professor George finds his architect lover Jim lying dead in the snow next to Jim’s overturned car. (0:02)

In a telephone call Jim’s cousin Harold tells George of Jim’s death. George is grief stricken. (0:08)

His friend Charley tells George, “You sound grumpy.”
”I’m dying for a dose of you.” (0:14)

George retrieves a revolver from a drawer. (0:14)

Student Kenny tells George, “It’s like I get really panic stricken...”
”Do you ever get high?”
”Well, have you ever taken drugs?”
“Have you ever tried mescaline?”
George: “Not my drug of choice. Shaved off one of my eyebrows once on mescaline.”
”Big mistake if you’re high on Mescaline.“
Kenny: “If you ever want to get high sir, I usually have some dope.”
George: “You really are mad, aren’t you?”
Rage, lust.” (0:26)

George tells Kenny, “And stay off the mescaline.” (0:33)

George buys bullets for his revolver. (0:40)

George walks past a sign advertising the movie: “PSYCHO” (0:41, 0:47)

George prepares the clothes he wants to wear for his funeral, organizes his belongings, prepares his revolver, practices holding it with the muzzle in his mouth, tries a variety of positions and locations in the house. (0:51)

George tells Charley,“You’re insane.” (1:01)

George makes more preparations. (1:09)

George handles the revolver. (1:12)

Kenny tells George, “I don’t mean to be depressing.”
George: “It’s not depressing. It’s not depressing.“ (1:15)

George asks Kenny, “Are you out of your mind?” (1:20)

Kenny tells George, “Well, sir, I’m afraid this time you don’t have the excuse of mescaline to explain your Band-Aid.” (1:23)

Kenny tells George, “Sometimes I think I'm crazy because I see things so differently to everyone else.” (1:27)

George replaces his revolver in the drawer. (1:30)

George ultimately dies. How does it matter whether he killed himself or abandoned that plan and died of a heart attack instead? How would each kind of death have impacted Charley and Kenny differently? Had he not died would George ultimately have killed himself at a later time? What does this tell us about our attitudes toward suicide? Jim’s accidental death provides yet another point of reference.