At her father’s grave, Mary (voiced by Toni Collette) looks at the little heart Max sent her, where it is written, ‘Love Yourself First’. She decides to take happiness into her life, marries her love Damien (Eric Bana), and writes of her joy to Max. Bursting with self-esteem, Mary shines at university. Determined to cure the world of mental illness, she writes her thesis on Asperger’s syndrome, using Max as her case study. Mary sends a dedicated copy to Max (voiced by Philip Seymour Hoffman), with a promise of half the royalties and a visit to New York. Deeply hurt, Max takes to his typewriter. The narrator of this clip is Barry Humphries.
In this clip we see the warm connection between Mary and Max and the ever-turning wheel of fortune. It introduces a turning point in the film: Max’s dramatic reaction on receiving Mary’s book, of which he is the subject. In the following scene, Max lists his emotions in a fury: hurt, betrayal, ‘confuzzlement’ – confusion and puzzlement. Absorbed in her work, Mary is blind to the feelings of both her penpal and her husband.