The whole film constantly places us in juxtaposition.
The beauty of the homes of the rich glittering on the harbour distracting us from the dark underbelly of the city. Before we even know who she is or what she is doing she knows (by staying safe in her hoody and earphone amour) that is is a difficult crossing, a perilous journey.
This is a theme I like exploring – beauty on the surface, darkness underneath.
The juxtaposition of the surface stakes (a cupcake), so low compared to the obstacles that are in her way. To the consequences of her decisions.
Stay on the bus…
The city is Callie’s party. It is where she lives out her fantasies. We know this because the photo she picks was of a glittering red-carpet event where she shines, but the truth cascades rapidly into deceit, betrayal and violence.
Callie, lives, breathes, takes, fucks, and uses all to keep the party going. And you’re having fun as long as you stay on the bus. Heaven help you if you try to stop it.
But this is also where Callie approaches but refuses to accept that she is and was loved. That it was she who couldn’t see it – the meeting with the goddess. If she accepted she was loved in this the mythical world her entire model of the world would collapse.
Here she cannot be loved. Here she can only experience hedonism.
Her Way, The Only Way
Callie believes that her way is the only way.
That she has every right to do what she wants, when she wants and to whom she wants and everyone else just has to fall in line. Callie believes that everyone wants her life if only they could. She believes this makes her better, superior. She is blind to its obvious faults.
This is her road of trials. Self-created but claiming everyone else is at fault.
And when she can no longer control the situation, when reality overwhelmingly doesn’t support the lies she tells herself, she runs.
Callie goes into her cave, to face the internal test like any hero. She treks through the glittering wonderland that represents everything that she believes in only to find herself cold, and alone on a rock made into a chair, a throne of solitude of her own making.
The city beckons to her, calls to her, tempts her.
But that is fantasy. In real life transformation only comes from pain.