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Paint It Black Lyrics: I see a red door and I want it painted black / No colours anymore, I want them to turn black / I see the girls walk by dressed in their summer.
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As Mick Jagger suggested, drugs do play a part in understanding the meaning of "Paint it Black. With everyone at home looking the other way, like so many he also turns to drugs, hoping to "fade away" into a psychedelic reverie where he can ease his pain and maybe even find "love" and happiness again.

Obviously, turning to drugs and alcohol to escape the tumultuous times of the s wasn't something that only Vietnam veterans did.

Many young people felt discontent with mainstream culture, and drugs were one way to escape. While the Vietnam War is important to understanding the meaning of "Paint it Black," it was not the only political upheaval going on in the turbulent s. The Civil Rights Movement was also in full swing, and for African Americans the two were very connected.

Paint It Black by The Rolling Stones

In fact, in the first printing of the single "Paint it Black," on the cover the title was accidentally transcribed as "Paint It, Black," reading as a command to manual labor for all African Americans. The errant comma was later removed by the record company Decca Records, but the punctuation error added a mysterious and racially charged new meaning to a song already rife with social commentary. In the end, the meaning of "Paint it Black" by the Rolling Stones is up for interpretation. While Mick Jagger suggested that the song's meaning is inconsequential and perhaps influenced by drug use, "Paint it Black" endures as a rock and roll song because it has so many layers of meaning that indirectly connect with the experiences of a variety of different people living and struggling in an era of political uncertainty: Vietnam veterans and mourners, young members of the counterculture, Black Americans struggling during the Civil Rights movement and anyone experiencing a sense of restlessness and dissatisfaction during a tumultuous time in American history.

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    It has sitars on it. It's about repercussions. This is a film about characters confronting the fallout of a suicide. They are characters who are in such shock—are such a mess—over the fact of the suicide that they are incapable of even considering what the reason or reasons behind it could be. They are desperate to cling to the facts of the young man's life, because the thought of his death is simply too much to bear. One of those characters is the young man's live-in girlfriend Josie Alia Shawkat , whose life, in a strange way, has come to be defined by the young man.

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    She was defined by him even before he took his own life. His name is Michael Rhys Wakefield , and the two met when she was modeling for an art class in which he was a participant. Their life together, which we see in flashbacks, is exclusively defined by him—his dreams, his talent, his demons. He was an artist. Josie appears to possess no set goals. She exists as a muse of sorts—to Michael when he drew her and, in the present, to her filmmaker friend played by Simon Helberg , who's shooting a low-budget movie that seems to have more than a tangential connection to Josie's experiences.

    Whomever Josie may be as her own person is an unknown.

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    Now, she's defined by her boyfriend's suicide, which she worries she might have caused in some way or another. The other character is Michael's mother Meredith Janet McTeer , deftly walking a fine line between realism and melodrama , a wealthy woman who lives in a grand mansion, where Josie and Michael had their first date by sneaking onto the grounds for a swim.

    She's a concert pianist, and within the expanse of the mansion's great hall, she pounds away at Rachmaninoff or sentimentally loses herself in Brahms—her son's favorite composer, thanks, in no small part, to her. Meredith's son was all she had, save for a career that put some distance between them and a family history of mental illness that she kept quiet—perhaps to the further destruction of her family. Tamblyn alternately plays the resulting conflict between the two women as a thriller, in which Meredith seems prepared to ruin Josie's life A stranger is watching the young woman from a distance, and there's an early threat that the mother could have the girlfriend "taken care of" , and as a piece of Gothic horror, in which Josie finds herself in that dark, dreary mansion and in the psychological clutches of a woman who wants to control everything.

    Even after Michael's death, Meredith still hasn't realized that she cannot. She definitely hasn't learned that there are consequences to trying. Josie's experience is filtered through a series of daytime dreams and visions—of actual glimpses of the past and of uncertain events in the present.

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    They're reflections of guilt, regret, and her deepest fears, presented with the logic of a dream and punctuated by Shawkat's performance, in which her face, full of despair and uncertainty, grounds those dreams in the reality of Josie's situation. The film, a strong directorial debut from Tamblyn, is about living with the results, and it creates a waking nightmare of seemingly unresolvable pain and anguish. The question isn't why Michael killed himself.