The Man from Earth

Every culture has a form of immortality and its a concept used in almost every type of media, be it the villain’s motivation or the hero’s reward. Immortality comes in many forms and shapes like using an ancient artefact, using magic, using technology or even being a supernatural creature grants immortality in a fantasy setup. Rarely any depiction of immortality deals with the darker aspects like being detected and experimented, psychological impacts of possibly outliving everything and everyone you loved. Immortality can be as much of a curse as it would be a boon, imagine being alive more than a 1000 years from now and being the only one who cannot connect because you’ve held on the past for so long. Todays generation is a hectic and tired one, only some would dare to accept immortality.

The movie from 2007 follows Professor John Oldman who seems to have survived for almost 14000 years, the entire movie is set in and arounds Johns home and mostly contains intellectual dialogues between him and his friends. John is moving from his current location and is stopped by his friends for an impromptu Farwell party. His friends are his colleagues that are experts in their respective fields and play a crucial part in each story told by John. His friends notice some peculiar things in Johns belongings like what seems to be an original Van Gogh, a hunting bow, some historic texts and objects that could be dated back to the Magdalenian era.

Oldman reluctantly start telling his story to the others. He relocates every ten years to keep anyone from realizing that he doesn’t age. He begins by telling his friends of his origin and later life when he realised he doesn’t age, he started out as a caveman from the Magdalenian era. He later relates being a Sumerian then residing in Babylon before moving to the east to become a follower of Buddha. He then continues telling his story of apparently having sailed with Columbus and having befriended Van Gogh. All the while each of his friends questions his stories pertaining to their knowledge. John tries to leave religion out of their conversations but he has no option when asked about his beliefs, he reluctantly reveals that in trying to take buddha’s teaching to the west he inadvertently became the inspiration behind Jesus.

This revelation of John possibly being the story behind Jesus doesn’t sit right with one of the groups members who is a devout Christian, John decides to say his stories were a hoax and leave to diffuse the tension. Every member of the group has different reactions to Johns revelations, a few believe john and a few don’t. After everyone else leaves John talk to Sandy one of his colleagues who believe in the story, he tells her some of the aliases he used. Will Gruber a psychiatrist friend of John overhears the conversation and recognizes one of the pseudonyms he previously used. Will realises John had been telling the truth all along, he asks John a few questions that can only be answered by someone close to his family. John is revealed to be Wills father who left when Will was young, after the revelation Will suffers a heart attack and passes away in Johns arms.

In conclusion an amazing movie that makes you think about immortality as not just a boon. A must watch movie for a science fiction enthusiast that doesn’t mind watching a movie only for its plot. The entire movie take place in and around Johns house, has no special effects or action, the movie makes up for all of this with its intriguing plot. A sequel was released in 2018 which showed John getting older and feeling the effects of time.

Categories: Entertainment

Tagged as: