出演： ジョン･ライリー 、ジェイソン･ロバーツ、 トム･クルーズ
死を間近にした父親、彼の若い妻、それを見守る看護士、行方知らずの彼の息子、テレビのクイズ番組の司会者、彼の疎遠になった娘、そのクイズ番組の天才少年、かつての天才少年、孤独な警察官のくりひろげる人生の複雑なプロットが ある一日を通じて偶然と思われる出来事を通じてからみあい、クライマックスを迎える。 その中で、各々が過去に引きずられていた自分に真っ向から直面させられ、人生の真の意味を問われる、そして「生」とは、「死」とは そして「人生」とはを、我々に真剣に問いかける作品である。 この映画を見終わった時、登場人物の 運命に翻弄されたかにも思われる苦悩に満ちた人生の中に 確固とした希望を見出し、繊細な優しさに包まれるのである。 この映画は、第５０回 ベルリン映画祭でグランプリを獲得し、撮影、編集、脚本、俳優陣の演技等、全ての部門おいても高い評価を得、また トム・クルーズはこの映画で ゴールデングローブ賞最優秀助演男優賞を獲得した。
I always believe that good movies are the ones with universal truth, which makes them survive the test of time. Some of the scenes or words in the movies may linger in your mind and make you wonder just what messages they have to convey. "Magnolia" is just such one of those movies. This movie, without violent nor far-fetched spectacular action scenes made possible by computer graphics, will surely bring you into close contact with the intricate emotions of daily life portrayed in the complicated lives of each character. To me, watching this movie is almost as uplifting an experience as reading a fine piece of literature, which inspires us at the deepest level of existence and helps us become aware of the strong forces looming over this chaotic world.
An elderly man, lying at his death bed, is full of remorse for his past wrong doings, and his last wish is to see his estranged son (Tom Cruise), now a popular workshop host teaching men to fully use their masculinity to seduce women. Yet, we are to find out that his charismatic power is only his unfulfilled soul in disguise.
The old man’s young beautiful wife, who only married him for his wealth, now realizes she truly loves him and suffers with a strong sense of guilt of not having loved him more. A lonely police officer falls in love with a drug-addicted girl who has been haunted by incidents in the past she feels so ashamed of. Her father, a famous game show host, suffers with terminal cancer and seeks reconciliation with his daughter and forgiveness from his wife for his past mistakes. A former champion of this show, left with nothing but the glory of the past to hold on to, desperately seeks where he stands, while the current champion struggles to remain a boy genius to attain his father’s love. The lives of all these people are portrayed in a single day in Los Angeles. All the events occurring in the story may seem to be a collection of fragments of some lives at a certain period of time, but we are to witness some strong force which pulls these people together and keeps them from going astray. Just like putting lost pieces back together in a jigsaw puzzle, the characters’ lives entwine to create a beautiful flower of a magnolia in the course of their painful search for love and meaning in this chaotic world.
If there are those out there who feel they have been dragged down by what happened in your lives through mishaps or the mistakes you yourselves made like we see in this movie, you are not the only one. The TV host in this movie said, "We may be through with the past, but the past ain’t through with us." We may spend some time in life lamenting, but we eventually have to become strong enough to leave the past behind. This movie will remind us that as humans we are not perfect and we constantly make mistakes, but that we all should take courage to forgive ourselves as well as others and move on with our lives.