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Kamis, 02 Februari 2012

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

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In 2005, Daisy, an elderly woman, is on her deathbed in a New Orleans hospital. Daisy asks her daughter, Caroline, to read aloud from the diary of Benjamin Button. In 1918, Mr. Gateau, a blind New Orleans clockmaker, loses his son on the battlefields of France in World War I. As a way to deal with the grief, Gateau builds a large clock for the New Orleans train station, but fixes it so that the time goes in reverse. When asked why, Gateau states that maybe time will reverse and the men lost in the war—including his son—might come home again.

On the evening of November 11, 1918, a boy is born with the appearance and physical maladies of a very elderly man. The baby's mother dies shortly after giving birth, and the father, Thomas Button, abandons the infant on the porch of a nursing home. Queenie and Mr. "Tizzy" Weathers, who work at the nursing home, find the baby, and Queenie decides to care for him as her own.

In 1930, 12-year-old Benjamin, having exchanged a wheelchair for crutches, befriends six-year-old Daisy, whose grandmother lives in the nursing home. As Benjamin's body grows younger, he accepts work on a tugboat. Benjamin also meets Thomas Button, who does not reveal that he is Benjamin's father. In 1936, Benjamin leaves New Orleans with the tugboat crew for a long-term work engagement. He eventually finds himself in Murmansk, where he starts an affair with Elizabeth Abbott, wife of the British Trade Minister.
In 1941, while the tugboat crew is still in Russia, Japan attacks the U.S. at Pearl Harbor thrusting America into World War II. Mike, the captain, volunteers the boat to be a ship in the U.S. Navy and the crew is assigned to scrap collection duty. During a patrol, the tugboat stumbles upon a sunken U.S. transport and the bodies of hundreds of American troops. While surveying the carnage, a German submarine surfaces. Knowing his duty Mike steers the tugboat full speed towards the sub while a German gunner fires on the tugboat killing most of the crew including Mike. The tugboat rams the submarine causing it to explode sinking both vessels. The next day Benjamin and one other crew member are picked up by ships of the U.S. Navy.

In 1945, Benjamin returns to New Orleans, and learns that 21-year-old Daisy has become a successful ballet dancer. Benjamin again crosses paths with Thomas Button, who, terminally ill, reveals that he is Benjamin's father. Thomas wills Benjamin his possessions before he dies.

Daisy's dance career is ended in Paris in 1957, when she is hit by a taxi cab and breaks her leg. When Benjamin goes to see her, Daisy is amazed at his youthful appearance, but frustrated at her own injuries; she tells him to stay out of her life. In 1962, Daisy returns to New Orleans and reunites with Benjamin. Now of comparable physical age, they fall in love and move in together.

Daisy gives birth to a girl, Caroline in 1968. Benjamin, believing he cannot be a father figure to his daughter due to his reverse aging, sells his belongings and leaves the proceeds to Daisy and Caroline. He travels the world alone during the 1970s.

Benjamin, appearing to be in his early twenties, returns to Daisy in 1980. Now re-married, Daisy introduces Benjamin to her husband and daughter as a family friend. Daisy then visits Benjamin at his hotel, where they share their passion for each other. Daisy admits that Benjamin was right to leave; she could not have coped otherwise. Benjamin departs again.

In 1991, widowed Daisy receives a phone call from social workers. They have found Benjamin — now apparently about 12 years old — living in a condemned building, and have contacted her because they found her name in his diary. The bewildered social workers say that his condition resembles dementia. Daisy moves into the nursing home where Benjamin grew up and takes care of him as he becomes increasingly younger until, physically, he becomes an infant once more. In 2003, he dies in Daisy's arms remembering who she was. Benjamin's story now told, Daisy dies in her New Orleans hospital bed, as Hurricane Katrina approaches.

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