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    剧情介绍:一九六八年春天,柯波拉开拍《雨族》(TheRainPeople)。其原始构想来自柯波拉的童年印象,一次他的母亲跟父亲吵架后出走了整整三天,有两天住到阿姨家,但不管怎样表示不管条件怎样变化,其结果始终不变母亲就是不肯说出之前一天的行踪。很久以后母亲才告诉他,她是待在一家汽车旅馆里害怕极了。二十九岁的柯波拉率队从纽约出发,计划往西行走,直到大家觉得够远了为止。柯波拉自用一辆野营车,内置一台剪接机。柯波拉太太带着孩子们开一辆福斯货车尾随拍片队,晚上一家人便夜宿当地汽车旅馆。包括柯波拉在内,男士们一概不准蓄胡以示良好形象,以易于获得地方上的拍片协助。这趟旅程长达四个月,走了美国十八州。柯波拉说:“我们用了一种不同寻常的拍片模式来拍《雨族》。就一车队人马,上哪里都行,非常机动,我们都觉得自己像罗宾汉一党。我们手上握有拍片的机器,好像并不是非好莱坞不可。我们想象,假设一路上只需要用几部车和一些基本配备就可以成功拍出好电影的话,那么我们何不去找一个像旧金山这样美丽的城市落脚建立我们的拍片社区?如此我们就能独立拍片。”《雨族》是一次无比欢愉的拍摄经验,遂而驱动了柯波拉的独立大梦提早实现,此即,是的此即“西洋镜片厂”。其楼起,与楼塌,二者同等深刻,令业界因吃惊或害怕而发愣的样子。所以雨族,何谓雨族?那日清晨,他们行经湿绿的乡间,绰号“杀手”脑部伤残被遣退的足球员(詹姆斯。肯恩JamesCann饰),告诉离家出走的娜塔莉有关雨族的故事。那是一种只要一哭身体就会消失的族类。杀手宣称曾经看到过他们一次。杀手说:“他们看起来跟常人没有两样,只是,凡女子必美丽,凡男子必英俊。而且他们,嗯,他们全身都是雨做的。”是谓雨族。摘自雨族/朱天文

    雨族评论

    In a curious way, Francis Ford Coppola's "The Rain People" is the mirror image of "Easy Rider." In Coppola's film, a middle-class wife drives the family station wagon west in search of freedom. In "Easy Rider," two drug freaks make a fortune smuggling cocaine across the border, and then head east on motorcycles in search of the middle-class dream of retirement in Florida.

    And so you have two opposed American life-styles crossing paths, somewhere in Oklahoma, like ships in the night. The characters in one movie are seeking what the characters in the other are escaping. Maybe that's what both movies are about; In any case, none of the characters succeed in escaping their pasts or reaching their goals. Or, as Peter Fonda says in "Easy Rider," we blew it; we all blew it.

    That may not be entirely accurate. Here and there in these states, there are no doubt millions of people who, by and large, are happy. By and large, I'm happy most of the time myself. But the catch is, what are we getting out of it? Should a life contribute something? Should it seem to have a meaning? It is enough to be happy, or must one be surrounded by a metaphysical glow of significance?

    The search for personal fulfillment is such an American theme we hold the patent on it. For a long time, we had the West. If you didn't like it here, you could always head there. But then, about the time of "The Grapes of Wrath" the West fell through as a place to go when things were bad at home. And ever since then, the great American search has to hit the road. Route 66. The Wabash Cannonball. I hear that train a-comin'....

    Basically the search is the same no matter how you undertake it. The young wife (Shirley Knight) In "The Rain People" and the Peter Fonda character in "Easy Rider" are lineal descendants of the most typical American searcher of them all, Huckleberry Finn. The rules of the game say these searches are always undertaken by two companions: a sophisticate, and an innocent. So Huck Finn takes along the slave, Jim. And Peter Fonda takes along the pothead (played by Dennis Hopper). And Shirley Knight picks up a hitchhiker (James Caan) who was a college football player until he got banged on the head and that made him an innocent.

    The function of innocents is to be satisfied and ask obvious questions. They dig things. They like catfish (Jim) and getting stoned (Hopper) and they love a parade (Caan). And they can't understand why their companion on the quest doesn't just settle down and take it easy.

    But the big thing about a quest, as Don Quixote explained to Sancho, is that it's only fun as long as you're still on it. That was the trouble with "Midnight Cowboy" -- as long as Ratso believed Florida would solve his problems, he was okay. But actually getting on the bus and going to Florida was a fatal mistake. By making his dream real he discovered, alas, it was only a dream.

    In "The Rain People" Coppola takes his characters across a carefully observed American landscape. Miss Knight and Caan drive through small country towns, and big cities.

    But the Shirley Knight character filters the landscape through her own disillusionment and despair. (She's trapped in a marriage she doesn't believe in, and she's going to have a child she's not sure she wants.) The "Easy Rider" characters on the other hand, would like to see groovy things but in their landscape everything seems to be going wrong. The kids in the hippie communes are as screwed up as the rednecks in the roadside cafe.

    Huck Finn had this figured out and he tried to fence off the world by creating his own and taking it with him. There was nothing so nice and smooth and quiet and easy as laying on your back on that raft in the middle of the night, floating down the Mississippi and watching the stars slide past.

    As for Coppola and his world, it's difficult to say whether his film is successful or not. That's the beautiful thing about a lot of the new, experimental American directors, they'd rather do interesting things and make provocative observations than try to outflank John Ford on his way to the Great American Movie.

    So all you can really say, I guess, is here's what Coppola's up to. It is a traditional American pastime and a noble one -- exploring the country through the eyes of a dissatisfied searcher. And what the search discovers is no more (and no less) than a crossroads in Oklahoma, a parade in Pennsylvania, long nights on the road, a hero who got banged on the head, and a highway patrolman who is, even so, a human being. And these places and people fit together, they love or hate each other, all because of the accident of being alive at the same time and place.

    It takes the innocent (the slave Jim, the simpleton pothead, the football hero) to ask -- why aren't you happy? What are you looking for? And it takes the sophisticate (as Huck Finn understood so well in his long chats with Jim) to say: If you can ask the question you don't need the answer.