MovieChat Forums > Paris, Texas (1984) Discussion > Hate to be a buzzkill but...

Hate to be a buzzkill but...


The story Travis recounts to Jane, about how he met her when she was 17/18 and they fell in love. That means he was in his early 50’s when he met her. I don’t have much sympathy for this situation because Travis was at worst a cradle robbing predator. I know I’m ignoring the technical aspects of the film wich I’m sure is all top notch and complex. Maybe it’s because I’m looking at this story from 2017 and not 1984 when the movie took place or the mid to late 1970’s relationship supposedly began so maybe things were different. I’m having a tough time getting over the age disparity.

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Cool story bro!

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Does that mean you disagree? I’m not saying I’m right, I might be missing something. It genuinely stumped me and affected my viewing. Maybe, in the story, the age gap isn’t as big?

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cradle robbing predator...yes, I disagree with that analogy. I am not contending that the age difference would be the right fit for everyone, but likewise, I would be remiss to say it is an improper fit for anyone. You seem to find an unsavory element to the situation that I simply do not register...I see two consenting adults perusing pleasure in each other's company. I see no difference in this scenario than I would for a homosexual couple, biracial couple,or even a polyamorous arrangement...just consenting adults pleasurably biding their time on this globe.

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Maybe predator was too strong of a word. If it was consensual then of course they should be free to be happy regardless of age difference. It’s just not surprising that eventually the relationship failed. More than half of all marriages do anyway.

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There you go! I can communicate with that. And I totally agree that a vast difference is not going to make the relationship easier...as a matter of fact...as an almost 50 year old man I doubt I could be in a relationship...even just physical...with someone 20 or 30 years my junior...but I feel people should be able to peruse their desires and learn from their mistakes if that is the outcome. Sorry for the smart ass comment earlier...I misread your intentions...you've actually made me want to review this film...I haven't seen it in decades.

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I borrowed the criterion collection from my local library. That thing is loaded with a ton of extra content. Nice chatting with you.

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Sounds like a cultural thing or you just haven't seen or heard of relationships where there's an age disparity. An old middle-school pal of mine ran into to me 2 years ago and he's married to a woman 19 years older than he is. Look at the Prime Minister of France as well and he's married to a woman almost twice his age.

As for this movie, not once did I wonder about the age disparity considering the characters and their predicament.

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The way I saw it, the film didn't really try to say "this is right, this is how it should be." The dysfunctional side was clearly Travis/Jane.

The other brother and his French wife were closer in age, far more stable, and the kid went to a good school in a nice neighborhood.

And yet, I don't feel as if Wim Wenders was trying to warn people either about age differences in relationships. His focus was more about family and how it shapes you as an adult. Travis growing up and getting the wrath of his father (it was hinted the father was abusive towards the mother and Travis) had an unfortunate effect on him. Maybe Travis was the one who took to verbal and physical beatings to protect the mother and his brother, and came out damaged from it. And what happens in the past becomes a part of you. And that's why Travis seems to always drift and yearn for something, not quite sure of what. When he finds Jane (someone who is actually interested in him) he falls madly in love - but becomes too protective and jealous because he doesn't want to lose this.

Both Travis and Jane, having tremendously difficult childhoods, would never be on a normal plane as others.

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