Wednesday, June 06, 2007

The Interview

I guess it shouldn’t have surprised me to see a shy Cormac McCarthy, but it did. It wasn’t clear whether he was shy in general or just shy of the cameras and Oprah Winfrey. The interview was very short, and turned out to be one of three segments on Oprah’s hour long program yesterday. They did about the same amount of talking about The Road as they did about his life and the writing process in general. And that was fine with me, because since we have so few windows into McCarthy’s life and methodology any dialogue whatsoever is interesting. He just seems so ordinary. He could have been one of many neighbors of mine growing up in small town Idaho, or some guy you stand next to in line at the supermarket.

I particularly liked his description of the impetus for the book—his standing in an El Paso hotel room in the middle of the night while his four year old son sleeps on the bed, and him looking out the window wondering what kind of future they may be slouching towards. The Road seemed more hopeful than his other works, and that was very satisfying. The concept of “enduring” in the book is approached with a sense of urgency and reverence.

I turned to Christy at one point of the interview and said, “I hope that she asks him if he believes in God.” It matters to me to know. I was happy to hear Oprah ask whether he had “worked out the God thing or not yet.” His answer seemed very human to me, “It would depend on what day you ask me” he said as he lauged. I believe that God plays a role in all of his works, and seems to be constantly on trial, or at the very least tested in relation to the heinous situations his characters are in.

I liked what little interview we received, and only wanted more. It isn’t on YouTube yet, from what I can tell, but you can watch it by registering for the Oprah Book Club on her website.

In other McCarthy news, the Coen Brothers premiered their adaptation of Cormac’s novel No Country For Old Men at the Cannes Film Festival to good reviews, especially for Javier Bardem as lead bad guy Chigurh. Click the link below to view 5 clips of the film.

No Country For Old Men


Beingandy said...

I love knowing what an artists belief in god. I love seeing the mistery of how things are tied in or laid out to react with each other and it makes me happy when artists of any sort recognize that god has a hand in our lives.

Nick said...

I put THE ROAD on my favorite book list. The more I think about it the more I like it.. I loved the section of the interview you mentioned about him staring out of the hotel thinking about his son.