It is a phrase that we’ve heard many times (in part anyway), but I am always amazed when I find an example of it that hits close to home. It comes as a greater surprise when the example comes from something that I would not exactly consider meaningful. My latest run in with this feeling is one such example.
I love movies. Not all movies are what I would consider good, but I believe most movies have something good within them. I recently watched a movie starring Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Bullock called “The Proposal.” There did not seem to be anything special about this movie, but as I am a fan of the actors in it and I had some time to kill so I gave it a shot. It is what one would call a typically formulaic romantic comedy. The two lead characters initially hate each other but through a series of wacky events find that they not only misunderstood the other person, but actually love them. It’s a trope we’ve seen time and time again, and was used in a rather unimaginative way. Then about three quarters of the way through the movie there is the following exchange that hit me out of nowhere:
MARGARET: I forgot, OK?
ANDREW: You forgot what?
MARGARET: I forgot what it was like to have a family! I’ve been on my own since I was 16 and I forgot what it felt like to have people love you, and make you breakfast and say, “Hey! We’d love to come down for the holidays.” And I say, “Well, why don’t we come up and see you instead?”
The scene is intended to be the moment that the unlikeable character is humanized and becomes someone the audience can sympathize with – but for me, it ripped a page right out of my life. I have been on my own for a very long time, but unlike Sandra Bullock’s character in the film it’s not because my family died – were are simply estranged. I almost think it unfair to use the words “simply” and “estranged” back to back as estrangement is never something that comes simply – but that’s a topic for another time.
What I allowed to happen in my case was that I took the estrangement of my wildly dysfunctional immediate family and inadvertently applied it to my extended family as well. And they were the ones who loved me, and made me breakfast, and inquired as to when I was going to come see them. It was a terrible thing I did to them, but it was also a terrible thing to have done to myself. In my life I created surrogate families with the friends I surrounded myself with – and don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my friends and I do consider them to be a family. But there is something about blood relations that makes one feel that you must innately put up with them. Whereas friendships, well – they grow apart. Try as one may to keep it from happening, life just has a way of taking us in different directions.
I recently had occasion to be exposed to that part of my family again, albeit not under the greatest of circumstances. And even after years apart, after the neglect I showed them, even in the midst of this terrible situation – they were still my family. And the words of Margaret’s character in The Proposal succinctly and completely summed up my situation – I forgot. I forgot what it was like to have a family. But more than that, I fear I may have forgotten what it is like to be PART of a family. The moments of exposure come and I recognize that I miss the feeling that family provides – but then the moments pass and I go right back to being my insular self. Not meaning to be estranged, but being so any way. I see this manner of being taking its toll on my surrogate families as well and I have to wonder, have I truly forgotten what it is like to be part of something? Have I lost the ability to be part of a family? Did I simply forget? Or did I make a choice and now I am reaping the fruits of those decisions?
Then I remember that it was an unremarkable piece of writing in a film that was mediocre at best, that made me think of something that really reaches into the core of who I am.
I love movies, and that Life Imitates Art. And that something so simple can bring to mind something so deep and complex.
This is your Week In Geek recap for week ending December 21, 2014!
In Theaters This Week
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
In the third part of Peter Jackson extended rendition of one of Tolkens earlier works, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies completes the epic tale of Bilbo Baggins, as played by Martin Freeman. Along with Bilbo are the cast of characters including Gandalf, Legolas, Bard, Tauriel, Thorin, Thandrul, and the dreadful menace of Smaug. We follow the middle earth tale which culminates in a battle against the forces of darkness. With a run time of 2 hours and 24 minutes, this movie is rated PG-13 for violence and potential bladder injury.
Much to no one’s surprise, the long awaited Star Wars Teaser Trailer is quickly heating up the internet. Although the reception is mostly positive, not everyone is loving the trailer. One commentator on Google+ said “The Cross Saber was enough for me to lose hope. So lame. ” Another says “Could not be any less excited after seeing this.” Other examples of those who were less than ecstatic can be seen below:
The Star Wars trailer is so awful, I’m still unconvinced it’s not a hoax going around. Fan hoax trailers were more believable and exiting.
— Grace Lynn (@PixelGoth) November 28, 2014
This week Marvel Entertainment made announcement upon announcement in what effectively garnering interest for some major announcements at San Diego Comic Con. From a gender bent Thor to a Black Captain America and a Superior Iron Man – Marvel has been making waves this week. Today was no exception.
Marvel has announced five new release dates for Marvel Studios productions, taking the current roster out to 2019. Thanks to the guys over at Screen Rant we have some speculation as to how this list is shaping up.
1. A phenomenon in which a luminous electrical discharge appears on a ship or aircraft during a storm.
2. A 1985 Joel Schumacher film surrounding a group of friends just out of college, and their struggle with adulthood.
In 1985, 12 (going on 13) year old me did not know either of the definitions listed above. It was a pretty rough time for me. I was living with an abusive parent, I had just come off of failing 7th grade at a private school in at attempt to punish my parents for their divorce and for moving me to the private school in the first place, and I was being left behind by all of my friends. (That last one is important with respect to how I feel about this movie, so pay attention.) So what is a tween to do for an escape? MOVIES!
1985 was a not so great year for me, but was a truly great year for movies. This is the year that gave us Back to the Future, The Goonies, Legend, Clue, Weird Science, The Jewel of the Nile, Cocoon, Desperately Seeking Susan, Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, Real Genius, Better Off Dead, The Breakfast Club and of course the reason for this post – St. Elmo’s Fire. While many of these films that I cherish allowed me a temporary escape from my reality it was the last two that really had a huge impact on me. Both of these movies gave me hope. “Both?” you might ask – “they are very different stories!” This is true – but they came at a pretty dark time in my childhood and made me believe that I might have something to look forward to.
We’d like to thank everyone that came out to Famous Faces and Funnies to watch the recording of the show! We apologize for not being able to go live from the location – We’re working on it!
A special thanks to Fawad Siddiqui for making it up from Miami to join the show and to Rick Shea for joining the panel and allowing us to record at his awesome comic shop!
As you know we took to our social media sites asking people to tell us their thoughts and experiences regarding the man of steel and we were going to give a prize to our favorite comment. Well the winning comment goes to a user over on Google+ – HAROLD HIRSCH with the following comment:
It was announced yesterday that the second installment of the man of Steel franchise officially had a name – “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”
But wait a second – Batman v Superman? This is the second Man Of Steel movie, and not only is Man Of Steel not in the title, but the person that the title references (ie Superman) does not even get top billing? What gives here? This is the second installment of the Superman franchise and he is getting second billing in his own movie!
When the announcement was made that there was going to be a Batman vs Superman movie, I was just as excited as everyone else. However I was under the impression that this would be a Super hero team up Movie. OK the addition of Batman is exciting – isn’t it? The More I thought about it, the more problematic it became. We have just met Superman in this new universe and there is no mention of Batman, let alone any other heroes. So how is this going to work?
This girl, the daughter of Liam Neeson, is in a bikini being honed into the next Liam Neeson, as he instructs her over the phone as Liam Neeson is beaten in a dungeon by some Muslim terrorists. Nice, Beards vs. Bikinis – sums things up pretty well.
Liam Neeson is all of our dads, really if you think about it. He keeps us all safe, all throughout time and space, and various genres. I don’t think he ever masturbates. He’s a real man. And he’s sacrificed his life many times over… multiple lives, in various periods of history. Even in Krull, from Cyclopes’! He controls krakens and is a master of the fuckin’ force!
Disney’s Frozen has gotten under my skin in a way that no movie has in a very long time. I knew I enjoyed it the first time I watched it, but I really had no idea just how much this movie would be on my mind in the time since then.
At first I thought that maybe it was just the fact the Disney had seemingly gone back to their roots in making great animated movies in the vein of The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and my personal favorite – Aladdin. Correction, my former personal favorite as Frozen has soundly dethroned its predecessor. However as time has progressed I am coming to find that it really isn’t that simple. Frozen has simply spoken to me on a level that very few works have ever managed. In short, Frozen got to my heart. (As it turns out, contrary to popular belief, I have one.)