A cracking tale of catalytic exteriorisation phenomena, among other things.
A few days ago I saw A Dangerous Method. I'd been eagerly awaiting its appearance in the cinemas ever since it first appeared at the Venice Film Festival. I expected to be interested in the storyline: the true story (though doubtless massaged a little for the screen) of the relationship between Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud, and the relationships of both men with Jung's patient Sabina Spielrein. I expected to be impressed by Viggo Mortensen as Freud, and I knew David Cronenberg can be a very good director (though the only one of his films I'd actually seen before was Crash, most memorable to me at least for its beautiful opening credits).
So I was unprepared, to begin with, to see Keira Knightley (recently sent up by Watson and Oliver as "I done a film....pouty face!") actually demonstrating a hitherto brilliantly concealed talent for acting. You have to understand that I have no first-hand knowledge of hysterical neurotics in therapy, nor do I know from personal experience what a woman sounds like when in the throes of a spanking-induced orgasm: but she convinced me that I was watching something pretty truthful. Michael Fassbender I'd never heard of, but he was quite extraordinary as Jung. I didn't know the Sabina Spielrein story but was familiar with the other ins and outs of the Freud-Jung relationship, and the script and performances brought it to life wonderfully. And the score by Howard Shore was a delight. Early in the film there is a discussion of the significance of the Siegfried myth, which makes it quite natural that the film's music should comprise mostly either arranged quotations from Wagner's Ring, or original music based on Ring leitmotifs.
All in all, I'm very surprised that it didn't receive any Oscar nominations.
And watching the credits of Crash once more I see that it too had music by Howard Shore. Well, well.
As for the title of my post, the film include the bookcase anecdote described here. Though sadly not the Scarab one.