Movie - "Lantana" : Valerie believes that "home should be a sanctuary, not a battleground". Why does her relationship with John break down?

Essay by lem0001High School, 12th gradeA-, July 2006

download word file, 2 pages 3.0

Downloaded 23 times

Lantana in Australia is a prickly weed that will grow almost any where. It grows like a web of thorns entangling any one who is drawn near. The movie "lantana" is exactly the same as the plant, as all the characters are 'intertwined' in some way. Valerie Somers, a character in the movie, falls victim to an entanglement of suspicion and lies which forms the battleground on which her relationship with John breaksdown. Although Valerie states herself that home should be a sanctuary, this is not evidenced in the home life she is experiencing at the moment with John. With the mysterious late nights of her husband John, and the challenging therapy sessions she is engaging in with Patrick, Valeries capacity to trust is diminishing taking with it her "sanctuary" and leading inevitably to her death.

Valerie and John's Daughter, Eleanor, was murdered a couple of years before the time of the movie. John, who is a very reserved and quiet man, has kept his grief to himself battling his demons alone. Valerie, a psychiatrist, goes about grieving the best way she thinks possible, by writing a book about her lost daughter. The contrasting ways that John and Valerie cope individually with their grief, alienates the other, which would have to be the first step in their emotional separation. This caused their 'home' to begin to fall apart and as Valerie says, "for most it is a battleground".

Valerie is a psychiatrist who is counselling a young homosexual called Patrick. Valerie is unnerved by the way Patrick speaks to her and becomes somewhat upset when Patrick begins talking about his gay partner, who is married, "he comes encumbered....with a wife". The way in which Patrick portrays married women in the sessions seems as if he is attacking...