The relationship patterns of the movie ‘365 days’

As I realised, the movie called ‘365 days’ made a huge turbulence within the audience. I read reviews, saw that it got a rating of 3.3 out of 10 – I decided to watch this movie, if it has been so divisive. Then I got to understand everything.

The storyline: an Italian mafia lead (Massimo) kidnaps the targeted woman (Laura), whom he noticed years ago already, closes her into his kind-of-castle and gives her 365 days to fall in love with him (Wait what?? What now??). In a very gallant way he states that he will not do anything with the woman, that she doesn’t want (in my opinion, holding someone hostage is already that kind of thing, but it is obvious that the values of a mafia lead is different, he believes that he is a gentleman by not harassing the woman, at least not sexually).

The woman first tries to escape, then after a long struggle (meaning: at least 1-2 weeks have already passed in this situation, wow) the woman surrenders to her btw perfectly muscular detainee.

Even before this point, but especially after, many scenes can be seen where Laura goes for a shopping tour on Massimo’s account, and during such a trip she spends the whole-year GDP of a smaller African country – to buy extremely expensive high-end clothes, purses, shoes. Well, it really did worth giving it in (or maybe not…?). Then the story continues but I will not spoiler it, in case someone still wants to watch the movie.

While me watching it, I saw how nicely the characters show the damaged relationship patterns, which are unfortunately run by so many people in the real life as well.

Let’s see, why the people of this story do what they do, what impulses most probably reached them in the past, due to which they think it is all right to create this kind of situation or to accept it.

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Our heroine, Laura

As we can see in the movie, Laura, the Polish young woman, is successful in her job, however not that much successful with her current boyfriend, Martin. The man does not appreciate her, uses her, makes her fulfil his wishes and will. It is already an interesting question, what can be that pattern in Laura’s past, based on which she was involved in such a relationship in the first place.

Her parents are not mentioned, but as I imagine, her father treated the wife exactly the same way and Laura – growing up in this family – carried on this poisonous, psychologically abusive pattern and lived up to it in her own relationship.

Then Laura’s birthday comes, four of them travel to Sicily, where Martin completely ignores the woman, sometimes he “throws a bone” (meaning: a nice gesture) to her, what she can chew on, but only as a superficial propitiation to avoid big fights.

At this point Massimo kidnaps Laura. In the beginning Laura tries to get out and escape, but as we can imagine, such a mafia lead has his own people and ways to prevent that. The woman starts to play with the man, pushing the limits. From her end it is already a relationship game, where she is testing her power.

What is really interesting though, that her initial fear turns into something completely else – surprisingly quickly.

She starts to enjoy playing this ‘getting closer – stepping back’ game with the man – whom she seems to find very attractive actually. It tells us a lot about Laura’s emotional wounds, that in such a situation, where she is being held hostage, she can ease up relatively quickly and start to play the game. She even enjoys it. She enjoys living in a small castle, being overstock by infinite amount of material goods.

I believe you already feel, that the love-like emotions are not appearing on the cast list in this story…

It is absolutely unbelievable how quickly she surrenders and also says, that she is in love (with whom?? with the man who kidnapped her?? why?? how??)

The conversations between Laura and Massimo are fairly short, they do not exactly get to know each other deeply. I mean deeply in the soul. Because in the physical sense they do get to know each other very well – and also those can get to know them, who watch the movie through various scenes.

But, all in all, Laura is completely lost. It is not love, what she feels. Compared to his previous boyfriend maybe this man pays a little bit more attention to her – but not much more, let’s face it. And anyways, this is absolutely an awkward situation, which started with her being kidnapped.

Laura not having any idea about secure attachment, being appreciated by others, real deep emotions and the feeling of real care says yes when Massimo asks her to marry him. In this situation. Knowing (?) each other for 2 months. Wish you all the happiness, really…

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The mafia lead, Massimo

The movie starts with the father being shot dead in front of Massimo’s eyes. He inherits the “empire”. The father-son connection is not being elaborated here either, but we can imagine that it was not based on positive reinforcement and heartfelt love.

Especially, that the writers didn’t even mention the character of Massimo’s mother. If we assume that this young Italian man grew up without motherly attachment, we can already get a kind-of answer to why he cannot treat women the way he should.

He would have everything in his hands to attract Laura with kindness, gifts, care, attention, travels, gestures. But nooo, he plays it from power. He kidnaps the lady and locks her in. This is the beginning of a huge and deep real love. Oh, wait… it is not.

But Massimo doesn’t know any better. He is not able to be gentle, he cannot express positive emotions.

Either he is furious and dreadful, or he expresses what’s inside him with sex. A certain level of self-awareness is given to the character though, as he asks Laura to teach him how to love her. Sadly, this is a tie situation, as Laura also doesn’t know how to love. Neither of them has any idea about what the heartfelt love is or how to give and receive it. Sex, money and material goods are the degenerated tools of expression of love for both of them.

Besides these, Massimo also has the compulsion of complete control and owning others. He must control everyone and everything – no one can have any objections. Under these circumstances even the woman is treated as an object, a tool, who is only good when she does what the man wants.

Afterall, they are in a perfect balance. It is a pity, that it is a vastly unhealthy balance. The injuries of these two people complement each other, as the pieces of the puzzle.

When I see such things in the real life, it is really sad.

The above movie is only a fiction, but unfortunately in the real life we can also find very similar relationship dynamics.

Where the man owns the woman, where there are no real, deep positive emotions, only materialism and sex. It is not because the two parties of the relationship are bad people, but because they do not know any better. They didn’t learn how to give love, how to care, they didn’t experience before how is it to get all these.

You can live like this, but the question is: is it really a life this way?

Being stuck in a cage, struggling, when in the relationship the bad is more than the good. When the psychological abuse is more, than the gentle love, respect, appreciation, attention, care. It has to be changed, you have to head towards the route of self-awareness and self-development.

If it is real love, it can never include the abuse and the dismissal of the other.

Real love does not keep you in fear and within limits, but it encourages a way for the self-realisation of the two people alone and together as well and also encourages the unconditional positive connection. This is what is worth thriving for. ¤

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