Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Loving Jesse James

Aren’t families grand? As a reader pointed out in response to Danis’s review of the Jesse James film with the really long name, the family of Jesse James have put up their own review of the movie on their website, Stray Leaves. The site is really worth a look. Fuelled by a love of mystery and a passion for the past, it has that wonderful obsessiveness you find on great fan sites. The opening words are, “James Ancestry, like life, is fluid...” and it just keeps getting better...

"Today, the facts we assemble tell a story.
Tomorrow, our story tells a myth.
In time, the myth becomes lore.
Lore becomes the certainly
by which we learn."

What a fantastic way to link myths and stories – and this is a family with stories and connections to spare. Who’s not surprised to learn that Jesse James’s great-grandson, James R. Ross, was a judge, and saddened to learn that he died this year? Did you ever wonder if the James family likes Brad Pitt as Jesse James? Of course they did. “Brad Pitt has stripped away the myth. He stripped away the legend and the lore. He stripped away the Western and all its gratuitous violence. What he left is the man himself, Jesse James. For anyone who wants to meet Jesse James on a personal level, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is the Jesse James movie to see.” Come on Warner Brothers, that deserves a billboard at the least.

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