The Devil’s Advocate was a movie that stayed in my head for quite a long time. It had an impact on the way I looked at the world. The way I looked at desires. It showed me the devil’s path.
The movie can actually be depressing or at least will surely strike some fears inside you. Nonetheless, the movie deserves appreciation. Several scenes give you chill down the spines. The dialogues are fantastic as well. Specially those by Al Pacino. They are like a discourse on life, on humans, and emotions. I did like the movie. It is because the movie has tons to learn. John Milton ( the devil in the movie, played by Al Pacino ), throughout the movie, speaks the words of the devil, instigating Kevin ( the character who is shown following the path of desires ) to get a taste of what he desires, to get what he wants. But, if you were to look at it this way, the dialogues are not just mere conversations, they put in front the dark emotions, and the human tendency to fall in front of one’s desires. Milton uses Kevin’s greed, ego and desires, to drive Kevin to madness. And although the movie shows a human as the devil influencing the life of Kevin, in my opinion, even if the devil is not someone in person, the devil’s words can be related to those we hear quite a few times in the media. To have bigger homes, more wealth and luxuries. To move a level higher in our lives. The ones that instigate us to just fulfill our desires not looking at what we will give up, the ones that tell us to have more not looking at if it even fills our soul.
The message in the movie is clear. The way our desires and wants shape us and how blind we become following them. We become so cut-off from the world, from people, that when we tread the path long enough we cannot find ourselves in the normal world. It affects everyone around us, putting the greatest harm on our self. We want to show the world what we have, and not what we have contributed. We want more of it, we continue to walk the path, the path of the devil.
Alongside this main message, there is another theme that the movie puts into light. The traumatizing effect of loneliness. It is shown in Mary ( Kevin’s wife ), who becomes a victim of the devil because she is the closest to Kevin. Thus highlighting, how our dark desires and emotions affect people close to us. Kevin gets a huge home and all the luxuries but leaves Mary alone in those luxuries, for he is still seeking more and has not settled. Mary tries to kill the loneliness, by involving herself in activities, but there is a lot of time in her hands and nothing that fills her soul. She asks Kevin several times to stop and give her some time. Soon she starts having hallucinations, and finally kills herself. Loneliness is one of the most fearful things to me as well, and is for most of the people. Being alone, kills your sanity.
The movie puts desires and wants in such dark light that you end up saying, “Man, I don’t want anything!”. And it struck me as well. I started questioning, “Should I want something? Should I have desires?”.
But to desire and want is to be human. And actually, you cannot lead a filling life if you do not want something, unless you are a hermit. It is not a question of “Should I have desires?” but more a question of “What do I desire?”. Is it something that fills my soul or is it something I wish because someone else has it, or the world proposes it. It is a question of “How much do you want?”. Will you stop when you have enough? When will it be enough?