The Father And The Son Analysis

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The film starts with a scene of the family playing tennis where the mom and the younger son is paired against the father and the elder son. The extreme competitiveness of Bernard, the father, is very evident in this scene itself thus giving us a glimpse of his narcissistic personality. Bernard’s desire to fight and hurt Joan, the mother, is evident in the way he uses their son to defeat her and hits her with the ball.
Bernard is a once successful writer who has gone down in his career and is unable to publish his work anymore. Joan, who started writing because of Bernard’s influence, has her career blossoming and her book is getting published. Joan is shown as a lady who cheats on her husband with different men and
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He reproduces everything his father authoritatively says about literature to other people and never bothers to actually read a book and make an impression of his own. Bernard, enjoying the admiration of Walt, never asks him to read a book by himself. Walt agrees to everything Bernard says to get his approval. He even goes to the extent of copying a Pink Floyd and claiming it as his own. Walt is the only person who admires Bernard in the family now, so in Bernard’s mind he is there for that purpose. Bernard evokes in Walt a feeling to take care of his father, defend him and make him feel better. All this makes it difficult for Walt to make an independent sense of self. Walt, just like his father, blames Joan for splitting the family up and dislikes her. Walt gets to know about his mother’s affairs from Bernard and lashes out at her and decides to stay with Bernard every day. Walt’s feeling of having lost his mother to Frank must have been what made him hate his mother and turn to his father. Walt finds a girlfriend, Sophie, and asks his dad for approval of her. Bernard, in the fear of losing Walt, tells Walt to not commit to Sophie and to keep his options open. Thus, Walt breaks up with Sophie and turns his attention to Lili who he thinks is a better option as she is approved by
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