Friday, January 23, 2009

The Curious Confessions of Max Button

Mark Twain (1835-1910) remarks, in so many words, that it’s a pity the best part of life comes at that beginning and the worst part at the end.

1921: F. Scott Fitzgerald, inspired by Twain's words, pens the short story The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Full Text, Synopsis) in which his main character ages backwards physically & emotionally: “Button begins with a fully stocked old brain and ends with a newborn’s tabula rasa” – The New Yorker. Button falls in love and marries his bride, only to leave her after she has grown old and unattractive as he’s grown younger.

2004: Andrew Sean Greer, inspired by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s story, writes the novel The Confessions of Max Tivoli (B&N.com) tweaking the conceit so that his main character ages backwards physically but not emotionally: “Max learns as he goes, as do those of us not condemned to age in reverse” – The New Yorker. Max falls in love with the same woman at three different life-stages.

2008: David Fincher directs the film version of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Synopsis) in which his main character ages backwards physically but not emotionally and falls in love with the same woman at three different life-stages.

2009: Eric Roth and Robin Swicord are nominated for the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar for the film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

I should add that I have not read the story, novel, or seen the movie. The film has never looked interesting to me.

Scott’s Button is born in 1860, Greer’s Tivoli in 1871, Fincher’s Button in 1918.

1 comment:

  1. I loved the movie, but I'm a sucker for Brad Pitt...

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In 1789, the governor of Australia granted land and some animals to James Ruse in an experiment to see how long it would take him to support himself. Within 15 months he had become self sufficient. The area is still known as Experiment Farm. This is my Experiment Farm to see how long it will take me to support myself by writing.