We just watched Pig, starring Nicolas Cage. It’s an intriguing movie that achieves something rather remarkable in an odd way.
I must be honest that about fifteen minutes in when it went secret, underground, restaurant worker fight club, I was like: “WTF?” and almost done with it.
I think a huge problem for this movie is no one seems to know how to market it. It doesn’t neatly fit into a genre or summary.
In a way, it’s a series of scenes, some of which don’t make much sense. Except in terms of the overall theme. Which is one that’s very difficult to cover: Grief.
One of the hard things about grief is that it means someone you loved is no longer alive. Thus, the predicate is that you love. There are many people who will not completely love another person or even a pet, for fear of losing them. That potential pain negates the opening up of one’s self in the moment to care about someone else.
Nicholas Cage’s character is a man in grief over the loss of his wife. He’s become a recluse who has a pig as his best friend. When the pig is stolen, unlike John Wick who proceeds to wantonly kill (indicating he never really loved the dog since revenge is a sign of a sociopath, if not psychopath), Cage looks for his pig. This leads him on a journey into the restaurant world of Portland that stretches credulity; but it doesn’t matter. The point is that several characters he runs into along the way have moments of true enlightenment. The story is about love, grief, memories and how it shapes us.
I don’t want to do spoilers, but one that really impressed me was the ending, where a Bruce Springsteen song that has always seemed to be about one thing, becomes about something else altogether.
Having experienced intense grief and sharing it, I can tell you the reactions ring true and bring up painful memories. But the pain means there was also love and life.
Cage’s acting is excellent, along with that of the rest of the cast.