Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hitting You Where You Live

Since it's Oscar's week, I started to think about movies or books that have resonated with me.  There are  stories that come along at certain times in your life that you can really relate to.  The movie Breaking Away came out in 1979 and was about a group of boys who were about my age at that time, and they were trying to find their place in the world.  It was funny, charming and inspirational, and if you've never seen it, check it out.  It features a very young and cute Dennis Quaid.

A few years later The Big Chill hit home with me.  When it came out in 1983, I was 23 and married and hanging out with my hubby's fraternity brothers and their wives, who were a few years older than me.  Already a cold wind was blowing through some of their marriages and would eventually experience their big chill of divorce.  It was sad to see those relationships crumble.

Parenthood came out in 1989 and by then I had already been a mom for two years.  My favorite line from that movie sums up what it is like to be a parent.  Grandma says it to Gil (Steve Martin) in the film:

You know, when I was nineteen, Grandpa took me on a roller coaster.  Up, down, up, down. Oh, what a ride! I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn't like it. They went on the merry-go-round. That just goes around. Nothing. I like the roller coaster. You get more out of it. 

Parenthood is not for the faint of heart!   

Perhaps my all-time favorite movie that hit home with me was Forrest Gump.  Although Forrest was a bit older than me, I remember many of the things Forrest experienced.  It think that was why so many people loved that movie; they could remember where they were when the events Forrest experienced in the move happened. 

There have been other stories that were acclaimed but fell flat with me at the time.  When I was in high school the movie Smile was released.  It was about a a teen beauty pageant.  I thought it was a dud.  A few years later I was a contestant in the Junior Miss pageant (I lost), but when I saw that movie again, I thought it was hilarious. 

A book that missed the mark the first time around with me was Anne Morrow Lindberg's Gift from the Sea.  I read it when I was 19 on the bus to NYC during a girls' get-away with my friends from high school.  My friend Ginny, who is now a doctor and who was always had a more sophisticated taste in reading (she read U.S. News & World Report as a sophomore), recommended it.  I found it incredibly dull.  About 15 years later, I came across the book again and re-read it.  This time around I thought it was very good.  I think I needed to get a little life experience under my belt to appreciate it.

Is there any book or movie that has hit home with you at a particular time in your life?

1 comment:

  1. Legally Blonde. No explanation needed. And I am totally serious.