Movie: Happy Old Year

Hey guys!

Recently I watched this Thai movie called 'Happy Old Year'. It's about a girl called Jean, decluttering her house, and in the process going through some emotional growth and struggle. 

The goal was to get from this cluttered space:

To this:

It's a crazy clean aesthetic, and you have to throw A LOT of stuff to get here.  And if you want to throw away things, especially sentimental things, you have to be HEARTLESS.

 Jean steels herself to start wading through things and getting rid of them. 

But it's a huge nostalgia trip anyway.

It kind of is, don't you think?

Sometimes it's hard to keep CDs because I don't even have a CD player on my laptop anymore. Honestly I just stream music nowadays.

We don't use them, but at least they are immortalised forever in this film! Also, mega props to the props team for finding all these old things.

Jean starts to hit roadblocks, like having second thoughts. 

Her friend is hurt because she threw away her gift. Jean shares her rationale, and later gets dealt a similar blow when her brother dumps one of her handmade gifts. Oof.

So she starts to return them to their owners. Sometimes she has happy reunions, sometimes she get rebukes. You also start to see how Jean is kind of a selfish asshole to everyone around her.

She meets her ex whom she dumped in a very terrible way to return him some stuff. She apologises and ends up in tears.You don't feel any sympathy for her because how he got dumped was brutal.

She also meets his current GF. Wearing her old shirt. Awkward tension. 

Decluttering is emotional work, mostly because objects get imbued with meaning. 

Jean is someone who does not like to apologise. After she finally learns to say sorry, she is frustrated because she is not always forgiven. 

One of the dramatic scenes in the movie:

Her ex confronts her and tells her that sometimes barging back into someone's life just to say sorry for your own closure is not a great idea. 

It's true, isn't it? Time doesn't heal all. Saying sorry is one small step but maybe silence is better. 

Her ex is saying all these things in the subtitles. Watch her frustrated, shocked face. 

Jean tries to explain that all she wanted to do was say sorry. She didn't mean to hurt him even more.

But her ex says if you really love someone, you let them be.

What do you think? 

I do agree sometimes when you dredge up old things in the past, you are getting closure for just yourself. Often, in the same stroke, you hurt the person once more because they now have to remember what you did and the hurt you caused them. THEN they still have to find some kind of grace and magnanimity in them to forgive you. Just because you finally decided to say sorry? 

So...what I think is that if you want to apologise, do it sooner than later. If it festers for too long, just drop it and move on. The other party may have moved on too, don't disturb their peace.

I'm the kind of person who likes to show love, but in that regard I have now stopped myself because although taking a first step to rekindle friendships is easy for me, the effort and willingness to sustain the friendship is not. In other words maybe sometimes I want the connection but cannot offer enough effort to sustain it. So now I just don't start it at all. I guess my 'care' is a selfish one.

After all, everyone has different demands of friendship. Some may want a deep bond, with daily interactions, while others just want to have a casual chat and check-in once in a while. The difficulty is matching these expectations without anyone getting hurt.

For example, I used to write a ton of notes, letters and birtdhay cards to my friends and classmates. I'm fine with going the extra mile. However, some of them felt pressurised to reciprocate. It makes them feel guilty that I remembered them but they did not remember me/my birthday. I don't feel any offence honestly lol I just wanted to say 'hello, how are you, hope you are well.' But maybe not like chat every day. It's a 'Great if we talk, fine if we don't' kind of attitude. Maybe it's selfish though. 

Over time I have learnt to be more measured so no one feels this burden... We all have limited time and energy and want to reserve it for our most precious ones. An intruder may not be welcome. 

 Anyone out there feeling the same?!

This movie is under the Romance category for some reason but I feel it's way more about self-growth, relationships with others and drama. Not lovey dovey at all. 

The ending is rather open, but hopefully Jean learned her lesson and starts to become a better human being. (Us as viewers too.) It's a slow, plodding kind of movie so don't be going expecting action or many laughs! 

What I learned: Treat people properly with care. Learn to be a better human being. Let sleeping dogs lie. (Or maybe test the water first)

And yes, if you're wondering, Marie Kondo and her show does come up in the movie. 

Movie: Happy Old Year
Released: 2019
Country: Thailand
Genre: Drama
Available on Netflix.


Enjoy :)