I didn't understand the ending to Paris, Texas.

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SPOILER

I really enjoyed the movie but didn't understand the ending. When Travis reunited his son with the mother, why did Travis drive away at the end? His son developed a big connection with him during the course of the movie, so for him to just leave, does more harm than good at this point, doesn't it?



SPOILER

I really enjoyed the movie but didn't understand the ending. When Travis reunited his son with the mother, why did Travis drive away at the end? His son developed a big connection with him during the course of the movie, so for him to just leave, does more harm than good at this point, doesn't it?
He doesn't trust himself, his drinking habits, his abusive / possessive behavior. Thinks him staying will do more harm in the long run. I'm still digesting this film and find it hard to rate, came across more as an art piece exhibition of color-schemes, cinematography and photography.



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I thought it was beautiful, and extremely heartbreaking. He knows that if he stays, then all three of their lives will be diminished as a result. So instead, he breaks his own heart by saying goodbye forever - knowing that the other two will be better off without him.

It's been a while since I watched it, but I think Harry Dean Stanton's character never reaches the town of Paris, Texas. So given that's what the film is called, I think the Director is telling us he feels he doesn't fit in anywhere. He eventually brought his wife and child together, then left as he wasn't good enough for them. Perhaps now he's off to make Paris, Texas his final resting place, thus completing the circle.

Damn, I want to watch this film again now.



I would add that he probably hoped he would be able to reunite with his family. I think things just got to complicated for him when he discovers his wife is working in a brothel (even if she does not have physical contact with her customers). He also ears from his wife what resulted from his abusive and neglectful behavior. I agree with Scarlet Lion. he does not trust himself to handle it.



I thought it was beautiful, and extremely heartbreaking. He knows that if he stays, then all three of their lives will be diminished as a result. So instead, he breaks his own heart by saying goodbye forever - knowing that the other two will be better off without him.

It's been a while since I watched it, but I think Harry Dean Stanton's character never reaches the town of Paris, Texas. So given that's what the film is called, I think the Director is telling us he feels he doesn't fit in anywhere. He eventually brought his wife and child together, then left as he wasn't good enough for them. Perhaps now he's off to make Paris, Texas his final resting place, thus completing the circle.

Damn, I want to watch this film again now.



This film had a tremendous impact on Harry Dean Stanton personally, he saw himself in the character, he also had a son that he didn't saw most of his life. There is a great "explanation" made both by Wim Wenders and Harry Dean Stanton about this specific film in the movie: Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction. Check it out.