by Rob DiCristino
Relationships end for any number of reasons. Sometimes, it’s one of those knock-down, drag-out fights, the really bad ones that force us to say things we can’t take back. Distance is also a killer, whether it’s of the physical or emotional variety. Living things need tending, of course, and those left neglected and alone will eventually fade and die. Throw in a litany of external stressors — career opportunities, family opposition, catastrophic forces majeure — and we start to understand what we’re up against when we decide to care about someone. The worst endings, though, are the ones that feel totally unmotivated, the ones that seem to come out of nowhere at all. They challenge our perception of reality and throw our sense of self completely out of whack. We were this person, we think to ourselves, and now we’re not. A part of us has simply vanished into the aether. At that point, we have two choices: Accept this new state of affairs and move on, or fight with every frayed fiber of our beings to get the old one back.
Colm’s answer is simple: Nothing. There is absolutely nothing Pádraic can do to mend these fences, nor was there any particular offense that brought them down to begin with. Colm doesn’t hate Pádraic; he’s just finding him frightfully dull of late, and given his advancing age, he can no longer sanction his tepid buffoonery. Colm wants to spend his remaining days composing pieces on his aforementioned fiddle and staring tranquilly at the sea. Fair enough, you might think, but not Pádraic. He’s not one for introspection or ennui. For him, life is a series of pints with some good deeds strung in between. “But I’m nice,” he tells his ex-friend. And he is! He’s very nice. But the more he pushes Colm to reconcile — or, at the very least, explain himself — the more rigid Colm becomes, eventually vowing to remove a finger from his fiddling hand each time Pádraic bothers him. Pádraic — and really, all of Inisherin — remains doubtful, though, and it takes more than a few bleeding digits before everyone accepts that Colm means business.
The Banshees of Inisherin hits theaters on October 21st.