Jason’s Lyric is an intelligent film containing some staggering performances. There are some complex and well-rounded characters within the story, but none more so than Jason, the protagonist. Until this point he has led his life for his family, rather than for himself, and has carried the blame for killing his father. However, the audience sees a transformation in Jason as he slowly learns that what happened was not his fault, and that he deserves to experience love and to be happy. At this point his character develops a lighter side and he becomes capable of loving someone other than his brother and mother. Jason is a pensive and complicated character who becomes ever more complex as the film progresses.
Jason’s Lyric tells the story of two brothers, Jason and Joshua. The two men are very different from one another or, at least, have chosen to live their lives very differently. Jason is a thoughtful and conscientious character. He spends a great deal of his time worrying about his younger brother Joshua, who is a petty criminal and drug dealer and is frequently in and out of prison. Jason is good-looking and intelligent, but is clearly carrying a lot on his young shoulders.
Jason remains tied to his brother and his mother, mainly because of what happened when the boys were children. There are times throughout the film when this is highlighted. When Joshua messes up his part in a group bank robbery and is consequently beaten by the rest of the gang, Jason confronts the gang leader and gets into a brutal fight on behalf of his brother. This event demonstrates to the audience just how much Jason loves and wishes to defend Joshua. It also shows Jason’s strength and bravery; despite having a good job and some future prospects, he is still streetwise and confident with the underworld.
Once he has met Lyric, Jason begins to transform as a character. He begins to make giant romantic gestures such as stealing a bus to take her out. More importantly, Jason is suddenly torn between his love for her and his love for his brother. This period of transition shows the audience another side to Jason. Jason has lived with the guilt of killing his father for his whole life, and has been affected by it in everything he has done. This experience was the single most important one in Jason’s life, and has shaped him ever since.
Jason’s Lyric is a powerful and unique film. The character of Jason is written and acted in a way that allows the audience to become close to him. He is thoughtful yet brave and confident in a crisis. He has lived with guilt about killing his father, and has dedicated his life to taking care of his mother and his younger brother. He has been protecting Joshua for so many years that he has developed an instinct for when he needs help, and he is always brave in such circumstances. The most interesting element of Jason is his transformation once he has met Lyric and he begins to realise that he wasn’t to blame for what happened all those years ago. A lighter, more playful, and intensely passionate side of him emerges as he looks towards a future without the guilt he has carried for so long.
Berardineli, J. “Jason’s Lyric.” Reel Reviews. 1994. Web. 19 Sept 2011.
Jason’s Lyric. Dir. Doug McHenry. Perf. Allan Payne. Gramercy Pictures, 1994. Film.