8 Bridges, 120 Miles of Swimming, and 1 Determined Woman: Grace Van Der Byl
The film 8 bridges (2015) was released in March 2015. The story revolves around a group of friends who decide to build a bridge across the river Styx from New York to Paris. They are joined by a determined woman named Grace van der Byl. Together they embark on their journey with her singing voice.
The cast includes:
Directed by: Damien Chazelle
Screenplay by: Damien Chazelle & Ethan Coen
Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Casey Affleck, Rachel Weisz, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, John Goodman, Jason Schwartzman and Laura Linney.
In the beginning of the movie, you see a man walking along a road. He sees a woman standing nearby holding something in her hand. She looks at him and smiles. You then see another man approaching them.
The second one is wearing sunglasses and holds something in his hands. He seems to be looking at them both rather than at the woman directly. You then see a close-up of the object in the second man’s hand. He places it on the ground and it explodes.
In the next scene, you see the same man walking along the same road. He stops in his tracks and looks up. You see a close-up of birds flying overhead. The man suddenly shouts “this is it!” and covers his ears.
An explosion can be heard and you see chaos ensuing with people running everywhere. In the midst of all this, you see two men running out of a building. They are being chased by a group of other men carrying guns. As they run past the first man, he picks up a gun and shoots one of the men chasing them. He then turns to the other one and they aim their guns at each other. They both fire simultaneously and fall to the ground. The man who was standing over the other one looks at him and then looks at the dead man. You see the other man, who is wearing a cowboy hat, get up and start to walk away.
In the next scene, you see a long line of people walking along a dirt road. A covered wagon is somewhere in the distance. There are several groups of people walking in different directions along the road. In the distance, you see three covered wagons moving slowly along the road.
There are several men on horseback riding along next to them. One of the men on horseback suddenly raises his arm and points in the direction of the other wagons. All the men riding with him turn and ride in their direction.
You then see a black man being led along by a rope tied around his neck. He is wearing old ragged clothes and he is being dragged along the ground by a tall, strongly built man who is holding the other end of the rope. A second man is walking alongside them. All of them have guns slung over their shoulders and all of them are wearing cowboy hats.
The first man looks up and sees the wagons in the distance. He stops pulling on the rope and says to the other two “we’d better hurry if we’re gonna catch up with them”. The second man says “look, there they are”. You see that they are in a barren, dry environment and you see the wagons in the distance.
The wagons are moving slowly along the road and the men on horseback are riding alongside them. All of a sudden, there are gunshots and one of the men riding a horse falls to the ground. You hear more gunshots and you see one of those riding a horse fall to the ground. The people in the wagons start shouting and cracking their whips. The two men on foot run towards the wagons and the other man keeps dragging the black man behind him. One of the men on horseback gets back on his horse and rides away from the wagons. The black man tries to get to his feet but is yanked back to the ground by the rope around his neck. The second man on foot reaches the lead wagon and topples it over. You see him get shot and fall to the ground. Two of the people in the wagons manage to jump off in time but one of them is dragged under the wagon and crushed to death. The third wagon gets turned over and crashes into the third wagon.
The black man manages to work himself loose from the rope around his neck and stands up, rubbing his neck. He runs towards one of the wagons and climbs onto it using an axe to balance himself. He manages to jump off the other side and runs towards the dead man lying nearby. The second man on foot sees what is happening and runs back towards him.
He throws his gun to the ground and kneels down next to the dead man. He takes off his hat and lays it on top of him and then he stands up and faces the two men chasing him. The man with the strong build raises his gun and points it at him. The black man stands with his arms by his side. The second man continues walking towards the two men and they turn and run away from him. You can see from the look on his face that he is going to catch them. He runs past the gun the man had dropped and kicks it along the ground in the opposite direction. From a little distance, you see him raise his arms in the air and then a moment later, he brings them down around the two men’s heads. He catches the first one and knocks him to the ground. The second man tries to get away but is held by the black man until the first one gets up and drags him to the ground.
The man with strong build turns to go back to his dead friend. He stands there for a moment and then he turns to walk back in your direction.
You see him coming closer and closer until he is only a few feet away and you can see his face clearly in the moonlight. You look and see that it is Frank James.
As you step out in front of him, you both stop and look at each other. He begins to tremble and cry. He slowly reaches out his arms towards you but then pulls back. He tries to say something but can’t get the words out.
You try to smile at him but it comes out more like a sneer. The only thing you can do is turn to walk away from him.
You sit down on the side of the road and wait. After a few minutes, you hear someone screaming for their lives coming from the direction of the camp. It is Jesse’s voice and it keeps getting closer and closer. Finally, he comes tearing around the bend in the road about a hundred feet away from you.
He is so pale that he glows in the moonlight. You can tell by looking at him that his mind is not in a good place.
He keeps running and running without slowing down and then suddenly he is standing in front of you. He looks like he wants to reach out and touch you but he can’t quite do it. He just stands there staring at you for a few minutes and finally whispers “you’ve won this time, Frank”. With those words, he turns and walks away from you and out of your lives forever.
The next day you and Jesse go back to the train robbery and split up the money that was left in the safe. You both head back to Missouri where Jesse joins his family and you are made welcome among your friends. You live there in Missouri until April of 1882 when Jesse comes to your farm with a blue vase full of money and asks you to help him escape once again. You know that it is wrong but you also know that you belong with him so you saddle your horse and ride away into the night.
You are captured a month later and returned to Missouri where you are charged with the crime of assisting fugitives. They try to make a deal with you in exchange for information about the James Family but you refuse to talk and they sentence you to prison for ten years. While you are in prison, you learn that Jesse and his brother Frank are killed in 1882 and that George is killed three years later. After serving your time, you are released from prison in 1901 but by that time your entire generation of outlaws is gone.
You live quietly on your farm until you die of natural causes in 1926.
Sources & references used in this article:
The girl and the game: A history of women’s sport in Canada by MA Hall – 2016 – books.google.com
Deep Enough for Drowning: Stories by C Byl – 2005 – search.proquest.com
Antiphonal histories: Performing Toba Batak past and present by JS Byl – 2006 – search.proquest.com
Notes and Queries: Historical, Biographical and Genealogical, Relating Chiefly to Interior Pennsylvania by RM Lanner – 1996 – Oxford University Press on Demand