My favourite movie of all time, hands down, is Garden State. For those of you not familiar with it, it’s the 2004 independent film written, directed and starred in by Zach Braff (Probably best known for Scrubs, the TV show). IMDB’s synopsis of the film hardly does it justice; “A quietly troubled young man returns home for his mother’s funeral after being estranged from his family for a decade.”
Before I say anymore about this film, I’d like to acknowledge that yes, I am aware of the fact that the female lead in this film falls into the Manic Pixie Dream Girl trope, but I enjoy the film despite that fact.
Side note: I remember reading somewhere that it’s not entirely fair to peg that characteristic on this film, because the story is centred around Zach Braff’s character’s perceptions, but that’s a whole other blog post for another day.
There is a scene, towards the end of the film, that marks when I fell in love with Garden State. The main character, Andrew Largeman (Braff) and friends visit a character named Albert, who lives with his family on the edge of a quarry, charged with keeping intruders out of the quarry, while slipping into the quarry at night to explore it himself, his own ‘Infinite Abyss’. As Largeman and his friends are leaving, he and Albert have an exchange that is my favourite part of the whole film. Here’s a clip of it (0.12 – 0.30):
For those of you that can’t listen to it, the dialogue goes like this:
Andrew Largeman: Hey Albert
Andrew Largeman: Good luck exploring the infinite abyss.
Albert: Thank you, and hey, you too.