Monday, August 17, 2009
We watched the film GOODBYE LENIN! where a former East German astronaut is reduced, post-career, to driving a taxi. Can't happen here? Astronaut Buzz Aldrin found himself selling Cadillacs, used and new. He tells the whole story, beginning to present, including his moon walk, in MAGNIFICENT DESOLATION, his on-again, off-again story of disappointment and depression aggravated with chronic alcoholism. What ultimately cements his triumph? Swearing off drink, and the love of a good woman, who herself, undergoes a stunning reversal of fortune, from millions in family bank stock (her father founded Western Savings & Loan in 1929) to zeroes in the same bank stock, when its charter is revoked in the 1989 savings and loan debacle. An apocryphal yet hopeful tale of the fragility of life here on planet Earth as (once seen) from the moon. Many caveats for the close reader. And finally, an extraordinary comeback.