Chris Falzon
University of New South Wales
In Being John Malkovich, the first of Charlie Kaufman's screenplays to be made into a feature film, the protagonist, Craig Schwartz , finds a portal into the body of actor John Malkovich , allowing him to inhabit it for fifteen minutes. Craig describes the experience to his sexy and condescending coworker Maxine , whom he lusts after: "It raises all sorts of philosophical-type questions, you know ... about the nature of self, about the existence of a soul You know, am I me? Is Malkovich Malkovich? I had a piece of wood in my hand, Maxine. I don't have it any more. Where is it? Did it disappear? How could that be? Is it still in Malkovich's head? I don't know! Do you see what a metaphysical can of worms this portal is? I don't see how I could go on living my life the way I've lived it before." Kaufman's film does indeed raise "philosophical-type questions" about the nature of self, including: what kind of self could possibly make this journey?
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