My first impression of the movie "Central Station” was, "Oh no, some foreign subtitled film that won't make any sense.”.
Boy was I wrong on that account. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and found a lot of symbolism and comedy in it.
The first scene of the movie was a shocker to me. I never thought that Rio was like that, especially at a train station. The sheer volume of people would be so overwhelming to me if I were there. What also surprised me was the fact that everyone seemed to be so overwhelmed with the hardships of life that they could still find a single blossom of hope in a retired teacher, Dora, the scrivener. In a place full of hatred and despair, Dora could bring hope and life. She is like a desert rose in the way that she lives in a harsh environment but can still grow to bring the landscape some sense of beauty and life. However, like every rose she had her thorns. This becomes apparent when she writes a letter for a lady and her son, Josue. .
The letter she was supposed to send to Josue's father she kept for reasons that I never really understood, maybe she didn't feel Josue's father, Jesus, deserved to know about his son because he was as Dora would call him a "drunkard”, or maybe she was just protecting Josue because their fathers had a lot in common. Throughout the movie this becomes more evident and starts to take on a very subtle, but powerful outlook on religion in my viewpoint.
This outlook, while being some what hidden underneath layers of Josue's stubborn belief in his father, rings through the enter movie and raises the question, "Can one survive in a harsh world on hope?” .
According to this movie the answer would be yes. Also the parallels to Christianity are well laid out that it is almost missed due to the content of the movie. The most apparent, and what drew me to my conclusion, is the name of Josue's father, Jesus. Now one might say, "there are lots of people named Jesus in the world”, this is true, but Josue belief that his father will come for him gives his "father” a certain form of a unnatural being since you never see Jesus in the movie.