Based on the novel “Night Train to Lisbon” by Pascal Mercier and directed by Bille August, the movie was released in 2013. The movie stars Jeremy Irons as Raimund, Jack Huston as Amadeu and Bruno Ganz as Jorge. Although our movie contains elements such as suspense, romance and mystery, it takes the audience on a philosophical journey with its unique music.
Raimund is a teacher in his own way. He expresses himself through his ordinary life and his ex-wife’s description of him as boring. I have never lived before, he says after everything he has witnessed. But one day on his way to school he meets a woman in a red coat who is about to jump into the river. As he saves her, his own journey begins. The woman leaves behind her red coat and a book inside. When Raimund opens the book, he begins to read the following lines:
“If we live a small part of the life that is inside us, what happens to the rest?” When a train ticket to Lisbon appears between these lines, Raimund embarks on the life journey of the author of the book, Amadeu. On this journey, quotations from Amadeu’s book are included. These philosophical points push both our hero and the audience to question. Curious about the life of the person who wrote these lines, Raimund witnesses many things in the name of Lisbon history and Amadeu’s life. He reopens a story that has been covered up. He completes unfinished sentences.
Amadeu is a very wealthy young man from an aristocratic family. Together with his best friend Jorge, he joins the Lisbon resistance. However, this resistance turns into another journey with the presence of a young woman named Estfania. Raimund, who wants to unify the whole story, interviews people who were involved in Amadeu’s life. His best friend Jorge, his sister Adriana and even Estefania… Thus, the present and the past are presented together in the movie.
On the streets of Lisbon and in a run-down hotel room, we read the following lines from Amadeu’s pen:
“The important moments that change the direction of life forever are not always recognized by the fact that they come shouting. In reality, the moments of experience that determine the direction of life are often incredibly understated. When it unleashes its revolutionary impact and allows life to unfold in a whole new light, it does so quietly. And in this marvelous silence resides its special nobility.”
When Raimund learns all the facts, he leaves for Bern, Switzerland. Except for a few days, he questions his own life. He stops in front of the train with the question “why don’t you stay?” from a woman named Mariana whom he met in Lisbon and the movie ends. It is not known whether Raimund stays in Lisbon. It is left to the viewer.
In the movie, there are no clear explanations about the characters and the revolution, some gaps are left. This is the case even for Amadeu, our main character and the author of the book. His journey is not really a journey of revolution but his own journey. That’s why he wrote the book and only a hundred copies were printed. Maybe this is what is wanted. As Amadeu puts it, the truth should not come shouting. To give the essence and for this essence to blossom in a different way in everyone…