Argo is a GO

November 13, 2012 at 11:55 am 3 comments

Probably everyone has seen Argo but me.  It had even come and gone to Whitehorse before I saw it.  The advantage is I get to talk about it openly (warning, spoilers) and see if you noticed what I did.

First I liked it.  I loved that it makes moments of my childhood come back to me, like the yellow ribbons and those fabulous clothes and hairstyles, and that it fills in the details.  This untold story is more fascinating than fiction.

It is also a story well told.  I couldn’t believe how tense I felt given I know how it ends.  Great writing and directing.

What makes it a really great movie for me is that it includes a personalization of the ordeal as Joe Stafford regrets that he didn’t listen to his wife when she wanted to go home.  He stayed because he wanted to prove he was a man, impress his boss.  He thought sticking it out would be a great career move.  His self reflection is really powerful because he gave so little consideration to his wife’s fear and his role to protect her and he suffers in regret.

I was so pissed off with him when he kept playing the skeptic, working aginst Tony, as if this was a good role for him.  Had he learned nothing?!

And then it happened.  At the airport when they were stopped, it was as if something clicked in Joe’s head and he decided to step up to the plate and do whatever it took to bring his wife to safety.  And he did it with a passion that made me tingle to watch.  He sold that crappy screenplay as if he wrote that baby himself.  They were not going to fail because he didn’t show up and do all that he could do.  This was the Warrior King in action and I loved seeing it.  Great character transformation.

I also have to say Ben Affleck was great.  Hopefully it’s not because he reminds me of an ex-boyfriend, but I think he is very charismatic on screen.  He echoed the same message.  When the warrior king in you is called to a challenge you use your discernment and you follow through.  Despite having a lot to lose, and an easy out, Tony Mendez acted out of integrity.  It is a beautiful thing to witness and I am grateful for the inspiring movie and the insight into the real life warrior kings that were involved in that moment in history.

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lorne  |  November 13, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    Kim: Another incisive movie review. It’s more routine than rare that I personally miss a pivotal moment in a film, but in this instance, I did notice how the character Joe Stafford stepped up to the plate at that key moment. I didn’t fully grasp the archteypal significance of Joe’s stepping forward, except the fact that he drew upon his gift of knowing the local language (Farsi?) to make a difference when it mattered most. As you so aptly expressed it, this was a transformational moment for a character previously focused on his own needs. As James Hollis might describe this type of action, Joe Stafford “showed up for life” when it counted.
    Your analysis is all the more insightful in that you identified a turning point in the film wherein the Tony Mendez character was NOT the major influence. I wonder how many other observers noticed that.
    Great movie, riveting analysis.
    Thanks, Kim.
    Lorne

    Reply
  • 2. SG  |  November 14, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    Fascinating; thanks for writing these articles [1a, 1b] (key at the end of this message); it reopens some questions that I dared not ask before.

    Just where do these archetype names come from? How far can we look with these words? I promise I have a useful point, and hope to make it clear.

    Well, to first mention what you have already written, there is a fair amount of method in the words you (in particular) pick, in [2, 3] which allows one to think and delimit. Which is good for begining thought or reflection on a typology even if you’d say only until it doesn’t create a rigidity.

    Yet, it leaves something useful to the imagination. Which is also good, as may be well intended, and productive.

    Except for some distracting questions, because a trip to the internet and reasonable search on how these may pertain to storytelling, seems to indicate these other names not covered by your method are picked ad hoc by each author. With less method or explanation I have found so far, than from you in [2, 3.]

    Although e.g., even in Table 1., in [2,] while one can imagine meanings, how is it that a Prince, Thief, and Don Juan end up in the feminine archetypes, and Queen, Benefactor, and Angel in the masculine ones.

    What is this concept of “receiver” apropos, a Goddess? At least in one culture, it seems different.

    Clearly you have specific meanings. Where do I find the insight behind these? Literature seems more ad hoc than specific, and that is fine as well, if only I could find that many nuances other than the literal meaning, which I suspect is not all you intend.

    And, e.g., in one of [1a, 1b] you use the phrase “Warrior King.” Which of course must different from the Lover King in [3.] Just wondering if there is more reading on these nuances. Not being lazy or limiting my imagination, but looking for the thought behind these, of those who’ve read lot more than mortals like me could.

    From a look up of the summary of all the books by the author you mention on the topic of Archetypes, [4;] While the relevance of his work is clear, it doesn’t seem that he would go into any of these specifics either.

    Does anyone? Or is this the unwritten rule of literary theory to not write too specifically on Archetypes or to agree on a vocabulary. Not that I would argue with the possible didactic thought behind that, but figured I should ask.

    Where does one look for more understanding on these, as they pertain to storytelling?

    ——–
    Reference key
    [1a] http://thevirginspromise.com/2012/11/13/argo-is-a-go/
    [1b] http://archetypalleadership.me/2012/11/13/movies-as-mentors/
    [2] http://thevirginspromise.com/2009/11/02/archetypes-101/
    [3] http://thevirginspromise.com/teaching-support-materials/
    [4] http://www.jameshollis.net/books/

    Reply
    • 3. thevirginspromise  |  December 5, 2012 at 11:21 am

      WHere do the names for the archetypes come from indeed. Archetypes are symbols that carry more meaning than a word or phrase. I think this is why there are several names for each. It is important for each person to find a name that speaks to thier undersatnding of the essential nature of an archetype. This requires an internal gaze to make a connection to what resonates with you which is very powerful.

      My favorite book on the Warrior King archetype is King, Warrior, Magician, Lover by Robert Moore et al (even they couldn’t find just one name).

      THe key to knowing the 12 archetypes is relationship to self, to others and to cosmos in both a masculine and a feminine way, each with a shadow and a light side.

      Cheers
      Kim

      Reply

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