No Country For Old Men Response I completely disagree with Keats and his idea that the movie, No Country for Old Men, ends happily as Sheriff Bell tells the story of his dream to his wife. Keats calls it a story of Bell’s “self forgiveness” as he realizes that the goals he had were way too great for him to handle. The viewers can obviously tell that Sheriff Bell looks completely defeated and extremely old in the last scene of the movie. His wife antagonizes his daily plans as a retired man but eventually lets him tell his sad Tories of the dreams he had that night.
As Bell tells her of his dreams, he becomes well aware that he will never meet the heroic stature of his Dad and he will probably never find his way to Heaven to meet his Dad because he is certain that God will never make His way into Tom Bell’s life. Tom Bell has two dreams that he shares with his wife. In the first dream, he tells us that he does not remember it very clearly but he says that his dad is at least 20 years younger than him in the dream and it is weird to him that he is a lot older than his own dad.
Bell may have lived a longer life than his father, but not necessarily a good and well-lived life. The second dream is a lot more detailed as Bell tells his wife that he was riding horseback when all of the sudden he sees his father on another horse with campfire equipment attached. Bell watches as his father rides past him well into the sunset and imagines the fire that his father would be making out in the cold mountains and he can’t wait to Join him. The dream seems hopeful until Bell tells his wife that he woke up before he could ever Join his father.
In the dream, the fire represents heaven. This is Bell’s chance to meet his father in Heaven but he is clearly shaken when he wakes up before he could reach the fire. Instead he wakes up to find himself as a retired, old man living an unexciting life without faith and hope for the future. If Bell wouldn’t have been so stubborn with the changing of times, maybe he could’ve measured up to his father. Bell could’ve fought the evil that he found in his little town in western Texas. He was a sheriff and he had a lot of power to do Justice or his town.
He was obviously smart enough to figure out what was going on with Chirurgic and Moss, he Just never decided to really take action. He let countless people die and still blamed all of the unfortunate events on a changing world that he will never understand because he is too “old” to keep up with it. He accepted defeat and decided he would never strong enough to seek God and His help because he was so intent that he never deserved the presence of something so great in his life. I agree with Seat’s statement, “…
You can only produce so much warmth and protection in an otherwise cold and hostile world. ” However, I do not believe that Sheriff Bell could ever forgive himself for his unfulfilled life when defeat is as clear as between Chirurgic and Moss, but he definitely could’ve tried harder. By trying harder, he definitely would’ve felt a lot closer to his father as a hero and maybe he would’ve let God enter his life. Sheriff Bell let his “old age” and his defeat muddle his chances with a happy ending as he realizes that this is no country for old men like himself.