Author Topic: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?  (Read 5065 times)

Offline mama

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why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« on: Feb 06, 2014, 03:05 PM »
I don't know why didn't Ennis let jake stay with him and his girls when he came all the way to see him he could tell him to stay and be careful not to show any emotions around the girls and have good time with him and his girls as there dad's friend and it was his fault to send the post card  :s)

Offline rimasworld

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #1 on: Feb 16, 2014, 04:59 PM »
Well as we know, Ennis wasn't good at expressing himself and I think Jack just showing up like that really caught him off guard and he didn't know what to do. You could tell he was very uncomfortable probably because it was not a planned meeting out in the middle of nowhere and his girls were also there which added to the discomfort. I think he felt bad about what he did to Jack but just didn't know how to handle the situation. Probably when he told Jack about the divorce he wasn't expecting Jack to drive there without notice since it had never happened before. I felt bad for both of them in that scene.

Offline mama

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #2 on: Feb 16, 2014, 06:40 PM »
Well as we know, Ennis wasn't good at expressing himself and I think Jack just showing up like that really caught him off guard and he didn't know what to do. You could tell he was very uncomfortable probably because it was not a planned meeting out in the middle of nowhere and his girls were also there which added to the discomfort. I think he felt bad about what he did to Jack but just didn't know how to handle the situation. Probably when he told Jack about the divorce he wasn't expecting Jack to drive there without notice since it had never happened before. I felt bad for both of them in that scene.
that sence makes me so sad for jake if he gust let him stay for some time may be jake wouldn't be that heart  but as you said he didn't know what to do :_(

Offline FlwrChild

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2014, 11:03 PM »
I think taking a chance like that was just too foreign a concept for Ennis. The way he looked when that truck drove by showed just how paranoid he was about people seeing him with Jack. He'd already said that if "this thing" of theirs took hold of them in front of other people, "we're dead." And later when he asks Jack if he looks at the people in town and thinks they're looking at him like they know, to me it shows how that fear is always with him, even when Jack is far away. So to have Jack stay with him, or even spend time with him while his girls were there, would just be more than poor Ennis could handle.
For a moment in our lives. Forever in our hearts.

"They were respectful of each otherís opinions, each glad to have a companion where none had been expected." ~ BBM Short Story

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Offline thunderwolf

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #4 on: Jun 18, 2014, 12:46 PM »
Hmm. This is a tricky - but great question. Here's MHO

Really getting into this, I can put myself into what I'd feel if I was in Ennis position.

Ennis lived his life by controlling what he could and putting up with what he couldn't. In the script Ennis is described as being surprised to see Jack, but still pleased. I didn't really get this from the movie. Ennis had already revealed through actions, not words, the depth of his feelings and physical hunger for Jack. Having Jack turn up out of the blue, not prior announced, would be for someone who lives his life through control and suppressing his emotions, too  hard to handle. Having his daughters there too, who he undoubtedly loved, but felt he was not the daddy they deserved, would also add to the weight of his anxiety at seeing Jack. These was two separate worlds, that were not meant to collide into one. Ever.

Having Jack arrive, all guns blazing, honking the horn disturbing the controlled silence and restraint of Ennis life caught him off guard. The way that the dialogue unfolds, you can see and hear that Ennis did not expect or want Jack to believe that the divorce postcard meant that the situation between them had changed. The way that Ennis rebuffs Jack's attempt to embrace him too tightly, or kiss him, and leads him over to meet his daughters. This is a visual reminder that Ennis has a life and responsibilities, that is not Jack. As a parent, you can understand why Ennis has to put his daughters first here. But why does that mean Jack has to leave, and is not invited to stay?

From Ennis' perspective, he'd always been quite honest with Jack about what their relationship was, and the terms of their getting together. Whether he felt happy about it, or felt it was the right thing to do, it's irrespective. Ennis valued restraint and making do. Therefore, letting Jack leave, on the promise of seeing each other next month, was the only course of action available.

This is where this scene both bugs me, wrenches at my heart and makes me love the movie. I can see Ennis perspective clearly. I just don't get Jacks! Why is he there? Is it just pure optimism and dreaming. The movie truly leads us to believe that Jack feels this is the turning point, what he's waited for, but why? Why?

On a personal level, I believe everyone in this world has two deaths. The real one, and the one that everyone knows about. For my reading of the movie, this is when Jack dies. He's never the same again. The charm and eagerness of his youth, are trodden on for good, and the character we see further on is a ghost of his former self. :(

Offline bluemountainsky

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #5 on: Aug 18, 2014, 01:52 AM »
I think Ennis being the paranoid fearful Ennis he is, was afraid his daughters might pick up on something. When it came to his relationship with Jack, Ennis' mind was always in overdrive, always creating new fears and worries that didn't exist.
"I'm not expecting to grow flowers in the desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime;
In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover's voice fires the mountainside."

Offline FlwrChild

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #6 on: Sep 15, 2014, 10:30 AM »
Hmm. This is a tricky - but great question. Here's MHO

Really getting into this, I can put myself into what I'd feel if I was in Ennis position.

Ennis lived his life by controlling what he could and putting up with what he couldn't. In the script Ennis is described as being surprised to see Jack, but still pleased. I didn't really get this from the movie. Ennis had already revealed through actions, not words, the depth of his feelings and physical hunger for Jack. Having Jack turn up out of the blue, not prior announced, would be for someone who lives his life through control and suppressing his emotions, too  hard to handle. Having his daughters there too, who he undoubtedly loved, but felt he was not the daddy they deserved, would also add to the weight of his anxiety at seeing Jack. These was two separate worlds, that were not meant to collide into one. Ever.

Having Jack arrive, all guns blazing, honking the horn disturbing the controlled silence and restraint of Ennis life caught him off guard. The way that the dialogue unfolds, you can see and hear that Ennis did not expect or want Jack to believe that the divorce postcard meant that the situation between them had changed. The way that Ennis rebuffs Jack's attempt to embrace him too tightly, or kiss him, and leads him over to meet his daughters. This is a visual reminder that Ennis has a life and responsibilities, that is not Jack. As a parent, you can understand why Ennis has to put his daughters first here. But why does that mean Jack has to leave, and is not invited to stay?

From Ennis' perspective, he'd always been quite honest with Jack about what their relationship was, and the terms of their getting together. Whether he felt happy about it, or felt it was the right thing to do, it's irrespective. Ennis valued restraint and making do. Therefore, letting Jack leave, on the promise of seeing each other next month, was the only course of action available.

This is where this scene both bugs me, wrenches at my heart and makes me love the movie. I can see Ennis perspective clearly. I just don't get Jacks! Why is he there? Is it just pure optimism and dreaming. The movie truly leads us to believe that Jack feels this is the turning point, what he's waited for, but why? Why?

On a personal level, I believe everyone in this world has two deaths. The real one, and the one that everyone knows about. For my reading of the movie, this is when Jack dies. He's never the same again. The charm and eagerness of his youth, are trodden on for good, and the character we see further on is a ghost of his former self. :(


I think you gave an excellent description of Ennis. Here's my take on your question about Jack. At their first reunion after those four years apart, Ennis told Jack about what he'd seen as a boy and why he didn't think two men could ever live together. But he also said there was nothing they could do because now he had a life with Alma and Jack had his life in Texas. Jack made it clear to Ennis that he was willing to leave that life to be with him. Perhaps he held onto the hope that one day Ennis would change his mind about two men living together or that if he ever divorced it might be different. So when Ennis sent him word that he was divorced, Jack took that to mean he was free and this was their chance to try something together. Obviously Ennis didn't say anything specific to that end because that was not his intent, but whether it was just knowing he was divorced or something else he said when he gave that information to Jack, Jack misunderstood and genuinely felt he should head north to see what came next.

As to your other remark, I think that's heartbreakingly true. I don't think Jack ever gave up on Ennis but I think a piece of him died and his heartache grew year by year. Lureen's comment to Ennis about Jack drinking a lot seems to support the notion that he was increasingly unhappy in life.  :(
For a moment in our lives. Forever in our hearts.

"They were respectful of each otherís opinions, each glad to have a companion where none had been expected." ~ BBM Short Story

There are three ways to ultimate success:
The first way is to be kind. The second way is to be kind. The third way is to be kind. (Mister Rogers)

Offline bluemountainsky

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #7 on: Sep 15, 2014, 01:55 PM »
I disagree about Jack being there. I can completely understand why Jack is there, and I've always detested Ennis for the way he treated him in that scene. I wanted to shout at the screen. "Ennis, what the hell?! How can you do that? How can you just let him walk away? Go after him, now!" The part that Ennis doesn't see, the part where Jack cries all the way back on that lonely drive and then decides to keep on driving till Mexico upon reaching Texas...that scene absolutely breaks my heart. I understand the extent of fear that society has instilled in Ennis, but sometimes I feel absolutely frustrated with that, and if I were Jack, I doubt I would have had the patience he had. I'm sorry, but I would have to just let someone like that go...I don't know if it is worth that level of heart ache. I understand it is true love and they are soulmates, but that probably would have been the turning point for me, and I would have just given up on Ennis after that happened. Just think of all the times that Jack made the proposal of living together over they years, the reunion wasn't the only time.

He must have persisted every time he saw Ennis on one of the trips, and every time Ennis turned it down. I can empathize completely with Jack and understand what he felt. He was a dreamer and a romantic. He did everything humanly possible to be with the one person he truly loved, but it is that very person that denied that chance at a happy life time and again. It is also obvious that Jack's pain at not being able to live with Ennis is what caused him to turn to Mexican prostitutes, the heavy drinking, and later the affair with Randall, (whom, I might add, I neither blame Randall nor Jack, Jack needed companionship from another man, and Randall was in the same boat as Jack and Ennis, a gay man living in a homophobic society. I believe Randall had no idea of Ennis's existence, and whether or not he was in love with Jack we don't know, but it's clear he became close to him).

Ennis not even understanding and realizing how much he was hurting Jack. But I do agree that he was taken by surprise, that the reason he isn't the happy Ennis, the real Ennis that only Jack could bring out in that scene, it was only because of his paranoia. He had his two daughters there, and they weren't babies anymore. Also, he was out in the open, where cars could drive by. Therefore someone as paranoid about being found out as him, was very shocked to Jack at that moment, hence he the embrace and his reaction is completely different from that reunion scene under Alma's window. Which also makes no sense if you think about it, since that was out in the open too, but I guess he thought no one could see. That's also another thing about Ennis, not everything makes sense with him.

Sometimes he could be so careless, like he was around Alma, doing things that made it so clear to her what his relationship with Jack really was. Other times, he is clearly bordering on downright paranoia. Unfortunately for Jack, that was one of those times. And he isn't so enthusiastic about the hug because he's afraid of being seen, mostly afraid that his daughters will pick up on what he's up to with Jack and in turn be ashamed of their father. That was really the main reason there. It breaks my heart that he had no idea how much Jack was hurting...that scene where Jack cries alone in his car...it's like the song. "I wish I could make you turn around, turn around and see me cry..." I wish Jack could have reached Ennis on more levels. It is too sad that only his death  turns on that bright light bulb for Ennis. When I look at that last scene with Ennis alone in his trailer, looking at the shirts and crying...part of me feels very bad for Ennis, the other part feels like Jack must have felt, that Ennis had a large part in creating his own sorrow, sadness, and loneliness. While Jack was alive, he had to suffer because of the choices that Ennis made, but it gives me some comfort at least that Jack is gone and no longer has to suffer that anymore. I always get the feeling he's looking over Ennis in that last scene, thinking I told you Ennis...now you finally understand.
« Last Edit: Sep 15, 2014, 03:14 PM by bluemountainsky »
"I'm not expecting to grow flowers in the desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime;
In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover's voice fires the mountainside."

Offline Mahogany

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #8 on: Sep 17, 2014, 05:15 PM »
Jack would behave himself, but the girls probably would ask some questions about their friendship and Ennis didn't want to lie to them, even if he did, Ennis and Jack didn't have a commom story to tell the girls. Although Alma Jr. already suspected.

Offline bluemountainsky

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #9 on: Sep 17, 2014, 06:31 PM »
Ennis was paranoid. Jack wouldn't kiss him in front of the girls...he would hug him like he did, he also tried to stroke his cheek I think. But really Ennis was so afraid that the girls would find out and then he would not be able to see them anymore, because they would tell Alma and she would stop his custody rights...what he didn't know is that Alma already knew the truth. So even if they had seen something "suspicious" and told their mother, he wouldn't have lost the right to be around his children. Also, Alma Junior, the older girl, I think she figured it out. I guess it's because he lived in such a small place...maybe there was no place for him to be intimate with Jack while the girls were visiting. But they were only going to be there for a few days...Jack would have understood and not done any more than hugging till they left... Damn I wish he had let Jack stay...poor poor Jack. I hate it when he drives away crying. I wish Ennis could have seen him much he was hurting him.
"I'm not expecting to grow flowers in the desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime;
In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover's voice fires the mountainside."

carlgarcia

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #10 on: Mar 05, 2018, 12:03 PM »
Thanks for all explanations of this situation because I didn't understand it too

Offline FlwrChild

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #11 on: Mar 06, 2018, 02:05 AM »
Hi carlgarcia.

All I know is that scene breaks my heart every time.
For a moment in our lives. Forever in our hearts.

"They were respectful of each otherís opinions, each glad to have a companion where none had been expected." ~ BBM Short Story

There are three ways to ultimate success:
The first way is to be kind. The second way is to be kind. The third way is to be kind. (Mister Rogers)

Offline jjeff

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Re: why didn,t Ennis let jake stay in the divorce sence?
« Reply #12 on: Jun 08, 2021, 11:01 PM »
It's funny how these threads go on for years. But it really doesn't matter, since the subject doesn't change.

This was obviously one of the movie's most important scenes. There are a couple of things. I think there was a lack of communication (since Ennis didn't talk much). Sometimes people project what they want onto a blank page. Maybe Jack thought Ennis had given him some encouragement when he actually hadn't.

Ennis used distance and solitude to control his feelings. Suddenly he didn't have either one. To keep control, he needed distance and solitude again.

I think their times together was a source of pain for Ennis. He would often be overcome by physical feelings of nausea and fall on the ground when they had to leave each other. He never let Jack or anyone else see it except for that last time. It was a weakness in himself that he detested. Maybe being with his girls opened him up and exposed his feelings and he had to clamp down on them fast. It's hard when you have to act one way with some people and another way with someone else and suddenly they are there together and you don't know what to do.

Maybe Ennis was just a dumb cowboy without emotional depth. But in any case, I don't think Ennis felt any regret. He probably just plain didn't understand it. I really relate to both guys. I grew up in rural Utah, which isn't a lot different than rural Wyoming and the scenes of solitude and poverty are the same things I saw every day. It can be a lonely life and I still carry the scars.