Leland And The Fundamentals Of Caring

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Grief and Loss Grief has a powerful effect on everyone’s lives. The heartbreaking feeling of losing someone close to you, like a family member or a significant other, alters how we view ourselves and act. Sometimes coping methods cause people to do things and make choices that they usually would not. This is illustrated in the films, The United States of Leland and The Fundamentals of Caring, where grief and loss are very prominent themes. The negatives and the positives are easily seen in grief and the full story always comes out after. In The United States of Leland, both grief and loss are seen and felt by the families of Leland and Ryan causing them to do things and make choices they usually would not. Following the death of Ryan, Allen…show more content…
In The Fundamentals of Caring, Ben is in the process of divorce. He isn’t in love with his wife anymore but refuses to sign the papers. His refusal is due to the thought of his family being broken which hurts him. He choses to deal with things internally and alone. By going on a road trip, Ben is able to avoid his wife Janet’s demand of him signing the papers, as well as create some joy within the situation.The loss of his son and his denial of that fact, keeps him in a loveless relationship. This situation is exasperated by the devotion and care he shows Trevor throughout the film. In contrast, throughout The United States of Leland, Becky and Leland seem to be in love but their solid relationship is broken by Becky’s desire to be with her ex. The separation leads both of them to be in an unhealthy emotional state causing them to do things and make choices they usually would not. Examples of this are Leland 's murder of Ryan and Becky’s addiction to heroin. Becky later realizes it wasn’t specifically her fault that Ryan was murdered. Both positives and negatives come from coping with traumatic…show more content…
Throughout his life, Leland lacks a father figure and only receives plane tickets as compensation of his father’s absence. As a young boy Leland created his ideal family upon visiting the Calderon’s in New York. Later in life, Leland revisits New York and finds his ideal shattered. Leland feels a sense of bereavement. In his coping state, Leland believes he needs to spare Ryan from the same sense of loss which lead to Leland committing murder. In the other film, for Trevor, the only pieces left of his father, Bob, are his father 's letters. Trevor never read the letters but they remain as a flicker of hope that his father cares for him. Upon learning that the letters really are not from Bob, Trevor’s belief in his father is broken and a sense of grief settles upon him. Trevor’s sense of self is broken and he decides to turn around on the road trip he is on with Ben and heads for home. This choice is stopped when Dot interferes, and then the journey continues. Coping is difficult especially when the truth reveals a less than ideal
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