Starring: Adam Driver, Golshifteh Farahani, Barry Shabaka Henley, Cliff Smith, Chasten Harmon, William Jackson Harper, Masatoshi Nagase
OUR RATING: ★★★★☆
Drama written and directed by Jim Jarmusch. Paterson (2016) centers on bus driver, Paterson (Adam Driver), in the city of Paterson, New Jersey. Every day, Paterson adheres to a simple routine, he drives his daily route, observing the city as it drifts across his windshield, and overhearing fragments of conversation swirling around him. He writes poetry into a notebook, he walks his dog, he stops in a bar and drinks exactly one beer. He goes home to his wife, Laura (Golshifteh Farahani). By contrast, Laura’s world is ever changing. New dreams come to her almost daily, each a different and inspired project. Paterson loves Laura and she loves him. He supports her newfound ambitions, she champions his secret gift for poetry. Laura urges him to make copies of his lovely observational verse, but he never seems to get around to it. Eventually a small disaster threatens to shatter their idyll.
Our Favorite Quotes:'When you're a child, you learn there are three dimensions, height, width, and depth. Like a shoebox. Then later, you hear there's a fourth dimension, time.' - Paterson Click To Tweet
Paterson: Morning, Donny.
Donny: Ready to roll, Paterson?
Paterson: Yeah. Everything okay?
Donny: Well, now that you ask, No, not really. My kid needs braces on her teeth, my car needs a transmission job, my wife wants me to take her to Florida but I’m behind on the mortgage payments, my uncle called from India and he needs money for my niece’s wedding and I got this strange rash on my back. You name it, brother. How about you?
Paterson: I’m okay.
Paterson: Another one. When you’re a child, you learn there are three dimensions, height, width, and depth. Like a shoebox. Then later, you hear there’s a fourth dimension, time. Then some say there can be five, six, seven. I knock off work, have a beer at the bar. I look down at the glass and feel glad.
Laura: [to Paterson] Your poetry is really good, and someday you might let the world read it. Admit you are a great poet.
Man in Low Rider: Hey, yoh. That’s an English bulldog, right? A dog like that get dog jacked, majee.
Paterson: Well it gives me something to look forward to I guess.
Man in Low Rider: Ooh.
Doc: You know Paterson, right?
Marie: Oh, not really, but we’ve seen each other. Hi, Paterson.
Paterson: Hey. Hey, Marie.
Marie: You drive the bus, right? Your name really Paterson or they just nicknamed you that?
Paterson: No, my real name is Paterson.
Marie: Well, that’s kind of crazy, right?
[they both laugh]
Marie: [sees Everett in the bar] Oh, s**t.
Doc: Everett still not getting it.
Marie: Not yet, the numbskull. I’ve been breaking up with for two weeks now. What am I going to do?
Everett: Marie, baby, I need to talk to you.
Everett: Please, just talk to me for a few minutes.
Marie: No, Everett, we’ve talked enough. More than enough.
[Marie gets up and walks away]
Everett: [after Marie refuses to talk to him and walks away] Hey, Paterson.
Paterson: Hey, Everett.
Everett: [Doc pours him a drink] Thanks, Doc. Man, what would you do? You love somebody more than anything in the whole damn world, you worship her, you don’t want to be alive without her, and she says she doesn’t want you, you’re just dirt.
Doc: Damn, brother. You should be an actor.
Paterson: But he’s not going to do anything crazy?
Marie: Everything he does is crazy.
Everett: [walks into the bar and holds up a gun] Nobody move!
[suddenly Paterson tackles him down to the ground]
Paterson: [as Paterson comes home] Hello, darling.
Laura: Hello, honey. I’m painting.
Paterson: [to their dog] Hello, Marvin.
Paterson: [looking at Laura’s painting] I see that.
Laura: What do you think? Does it make everything more interesting?
Paterson: Yeah, it’s very interesting.
'Sometimes an empty page presents the most possibilities.' - Japanese Poet (Paterson) Click To Tweet
Laura: How was your day?
Paterson: Oh, the usual.
Laura: Did any writing then?
Paterson: I did a little, yeah. Working on a poem for you.
Laura: A love poem?
Paterson: Yeah, I guess if it’s for you it’s a love poem. It’s kind of inspired by our Ohio Blue Tip Matches.
Laura: Really? Does it mention the little megaphone shape the letters make?
Paterson: Yeah, actually it does.
Laura: How beautiful. I can’t wait to read it when it’s done. I also painted new shower curtains, you should see them.
Paterson: Oh, okay.
Laura: You know what else I did today?
Paterson: You learned how to plant an usual vegetable garden in the backyard?
Laura: No, silly. That we have to do in the spring.
Laura: I had a beautiful dream, we had twins.
Laura: [to Paterson] All your poems are still in that one notebook, your secret notebook.
Paterson: I go through trillion of molecules that move aside to make way for me, while on both sides trillions more stay where they are.
Paterson: [making a call after his bus breaks down] This is Paterson Bus 23, I have a situation.
Man: [referring to Paterson’s bus] The damn thing could have exploded to a fireball.
Laura: I could be realizing my dream to be a country singer. Nashville, here I come.
Paterson: Look out Nashville.
Male Student: [Paterson overhears two youngsters talking on the bus as he’s driving] Do you think there’s any other anarchists in Paterson?
Female Student: Do you mean besides us? Not likely.
Everett: Without love, what reason is there for anything?
Japanese Poet: A bus driver in Paterson. A-ha.
Paterson: A-ha, what?
Japanese Poet: This very poetic.
'Poetry in translation is like taking a shower with a raincoat on.' - Japanese Poet (Paterson) Click To Tweet
Doc: [looking at the chessboard] I got my a** kicked a bit.
Paterson: Who are you playing?
Young Poet: Are you interested in poetry?
Paterson: Actually, I am, kind of.
Young Poet: Really?
Young Poet: I write poetry. I keep it all in this notebook. Secret notebook.
Paterson: Oh, you’re a poet.
Young Poet: Yeah.
Paterson: That’s great.
Young Poet: Would you like to hear one?
Paterson: Sure, sure.
Young Poet: It doesn’t really rhyme though.
Paterson: That’s okay. I kind of like them better when they don’t.
Young Poet: Yeah, me too.
Young Poet: [referring to her poem] Okay, this one’s called “The Water Falls”, two words though. That.
Paterson: “Water Falls,” okay.
Young Poet: Okay, “Water Falls. Water falls from the bright air, it falls like hair, falling across a young girl’s shoulders. Water falls, making pools in the asphalt, dirty mirrors with clouds and buildings inside. It falls on the roof of my house, it falls on my mother and on my hair. Most people call it rain.”
Paterson: That’s a beautiful poem.
Young Poet: You really like it?
Paterson: Yeah, I really do, I think it’s beautiful. “Water Falls”, thank you.
Method Man: [referring to Paterson’s dog, Marvin] Hey, pugsy. What are you looking at?
Method Man: [as Paterson pops his head around the corner] Ah, I’m guessing this is your human ball and chain, right, pimping?
Paterson: Sorry. I didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but I think it’s something really interesting you’re working on.
Method Man: I’m still working on it, you know. I’m trying to figure out how, how to spit it out. But, thanks, I really appreciate that.
Paterson: You’re laboratory?
Method Man: Wherever it hits me is where it’s going to be.
Paterson: Yeah, well, good luck. Thank you.
Method Man: Yeah, thank you. I really appreciate you.
Method Man: [to Marvin] Later, pimping. Alright. Peace.
'Without love, what reason is there for anything?' - Everett (Paterson) Click To Tweet
Japanese Poet: [to Paterson] My poetry only in Japanese. No translation. Poetry in translation is like taking a shower with a raincoat on.
Japanese Poet: [gives Paterson an notebook] A gift.
Paterson: A gift?
Japanese Poet: Yes. Sometime empty page present most possibilities.
Paterson: Thank you. That’s very kind of you.