Extremely loud and incredibly memorable

By Kristine Semptimphelter
February 8, 2012

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is about a 9-year old boy named Oskar Schell. This movie based on a novel with the same title.

For those who believe Stephen Daldry’s “Extremely Loud and Incrediby Close” is incredibly bad, they almost certainly left their hearts at home before entering the movie theater.

This tear-jerking drama left viewers in awe at the young Thomas Horn, whose breakthrough performance gave him a fast start to his career.

Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock star in  exceptionally dramatic performances. It is a story about losing a loved one in one of the most devastating tragedies in American history, 9/11.

The movie takes a journey with an intellectually curious and sensitive young boy named Oskar Schell (Horn). Oskar is a 9-year-old tambourine player and inventor. He is extremely intelligent for his age due to his father’s daily teachings, challenges and quest to never stop searching.

Learning to cope with the death of his beloved father, Thomas Schell (Hanks), in the attacks on the World Trade Center on 9/11, Oskar wanders the streets of New York City. Oskar searches for the meaning of an unexpected key he finds in his deceased father’s closet. The key, hidden inside a blue vase with the name “Black” written on the envelope, had no specific meaning to Oskar but being the curious young boy that he is, he had to make sense of it.

Oskar decides to look up every single person with the name Black living in the five, (six according to his father,) boroughs of New York City. Bearing a mysterious key and deep sorrow, Oskar embarks on a quest set up by his father. He has high hopes that by finding “the Black” he will find the lock to this mysterious key.

Dodging his mother’s worried eyes, Oskar sneaks in and out of his home every chance he gets. He makes sure to count every single lie he tells, including those told to his mother.

After meeting his grandmother’s tenant, known as “the Renter,” Oskar asks him to join him on the journey. The renter, played by Max von Sydow, brings a mysterious mix to the movie when we discover he is a mute.

The renter communicates through written notes and gestures. He even has the words “Yes” and “No” tattooed on the palm of his hands.

Oskar pushes his new traveler to various locations in New York, meeting everyone he can on his list. When the journey seems to be impossible, Oskar breakes down in realization that this quest could be impossible.

Oskar’s heartbroken mother, Linda (Bullock), searches for a passageway into Oskar’s obsessive mind. Once she realizes that she needs to think like her questioning son, she finds a way to join in his expedition. Linda travels to every single “Black” that Oskar is planning on meeting. Just like any worried mother, she prepares each family for Oskar’s visit and to make sure he was out of harms way.

According to the Huffington Post, “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” was the worst-reviewed movie of the past 10 years to receive a best picture nomination.

“Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” takes us back to a time in history that will never be forgotten. It asks us to consider one of the many tragedies connected with the unforgettable events of 9/11.

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Kristine Semptimphelter

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