Religious Themes In Harold And Maude

556 Words3 Pages
We watched the movie Harold and Maude in class because it shows ritual which is which is a commonality of all religions. Harold is ritualistic in his suicide enactments he prepares for each one with the seriousness of a real suicide attempt. His mother is weary of her son’s dramatics and tries to make him normal through serial dating, introduction the military, counseling with a psychiatrist and buying him a car to match their level of affluence. Trying to be normal from day to day can take ritual effort. Finding meaning in this movie is most difficult I feel like I’m pulling on loose ends. Based on the movie as a whole I would rather write a paper about Harold’s edifice complex than minor religious themes. Harold is seen in most of the scenes with either his mother or Maude who is more than old enough to be his mother. In scenes with his mother she treats him less than his age as child. His mother has standards to keep with her friends and only interacts with him after her friends see something she rather them not have. He has his first psychiatrist visit after…show more content…
Maude is befuddled by the idea of black at a funeral suggesting that death is a time to celebrate and the people at the funeral should be happy. To be against black at funerals may suggest an alternative white common at Hindu and Buddhist funerals. Maude taking a different car every time shows the impermanence of things. Maude and Harold are opposites; Maude is aged and enjoys growth and life whereas Harold is young and obsessed with death and destruction. In the flower scene the idea of a circular life cycle where a flower becomes something else after death is like samsara from the Buddhist tradition. When Harold and Maude sing together Maude compares it to cosmic dance sort of with the idea of yin and yang from Chinese thinking. Glaucus’ repeated trails with his ice sculpture remind me of Sisyphus’s task in
Open Document