Image Credit: left to right above: Elisabeth Moss in The Invisible Man (2020), Taika Waititi in Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss (2018), Richard Widmark in Panic in the Streets (1950)
In the Dark

Hankering Hereafter

The Invisible Man (2020)
Directed and written by Leigh Whannell ◆
Produced by Blumhouse Productions and Universal
Pictures ◆ Distributed by Universal Pictures

Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss (2018)
Directed by Vivieno Caldinelli ◆ Screenplay by
Christopher Hewitson, Clayton Hewitson, and
Justin Jones ◆ Produced and distributed by MarVista

Panic in the Streets (1950)
Directed by Elia Kazan ◆ Screenplay by Richard
Murphy and Daniel Fuchs ◆ Produced and distributed
by Twentieth Century Fox

The hankering for invisibility has a lengthy provenance. The desire is mentioned, for instance, in Plato’s Republic when the philosopher’s brother, Glaucon, talks of the Ring of Gyges that can bestow the power of invisibility on a man. With this power, Glaucon points out, a fellow can do whatever he wants to without worrying about damaging his reputation. Glaucon gives the example of a fellow invading boudoirs undetected to have sex with any woman he pleases. I wonder what his female acquaintances thought of this. Perhaps they just kept their eyes shut.

These reflections occurred to me while watching the new film version of H.G. Wells’ novel, The Invisible Man (1897). Although Wells had a reputation for womanizing, he didn’t invest...

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