Obviously, movies like "Amelie" and "In America" and yes, even ones as depressing as "About Schmidt" come to mind, but another thought came to me while driving early this morning: what if you could be a movie, what movie would you be? Or perhaps more importantly, what movie would your spouse (if applicable) would he/she be? And your kids? What about them?
Maybe I've got too much thinking time going to waste, but I was contemplating what some answers to these questions would be and they really made me think. Of course, I can't just pick movies I love but rather, I have to pick movies that possibly could stand as an icon for a person, and if that movie were a person, what kind of movie/person would I like them to be? I gave this some thought and I've come up with me and my imaginary movie family.
First, I (the father) would be "In America," because it's the kind of movie I think represents fatherhood honestly: not without pain, not without pleasure, but full of a dizzying kind of confused love that grows through relationships. My wife (the mother) would be "Run Lola Run." Now, I know what some of you are thinking: 'why is he picking a movie where the main character does nothing but run?' Well, if you really understood "Run Lola Run," you'd know that it is way more of an egalitarian kick in the face than it is about just purely running (even though that act--alone--is part of it). It's about this feminist-savvy woman, sure...but she is a really really really "cool" feminist-savvy woman (not worldy "cool," but ultimately and unconsciously cool, which is a definate plus). And she loves Manni so much she's willing to do anything for him (die, steal, rob, etc.). And she has style. And seems to believe in friendship like few other female movie characters do (give me Lola over J-Lo in "The Wedding Planner" ANYDAY)! And lastly, she's confident and knows who she is and what she wants. There's a fiery passion (found in her hair perhaps) and her repeated fits of screaming with all her might that sets ablaze something great. This is why I would pick this movie for my wife (a sentence I never thought in a million years I would actually write---I can see the wedding ceremony playing out now with my dad, the pastor, asking, "Neville, do you take this movie...?").
And kids? Well, real quick (as some people reading this are scratching their heads and going 'neville is sooo weird!') I would have seven kids. Three boys, consisting of "Edward Scissorhands," "Dogma," and "Harold and Maude," and four girls, consisting of "Pieces of April," "Winged Migration," "Amelie," and of course, "The Good Girl."
Now, to anyone who's seen the majority of these movies, I know what you're thinking: we'd be one messed up family. We would be melancholy and foul-mouthed at times, and yet quiet and intuitively imaginative on other occasions. We'd probably--as a whole unit--be somewhat similar to "The Royal Tenenbaums" but I like to think we'd be way more optimistic then that movie is (even though I think it is an optimistic movie). Oh what Christmas would look like in this kind of family!
So there you have it: a family resembling Holden Caufield, beautiful birds who soar with grace, girls who can't cook, boys who are theologically agressive, and one big dysfunctional love-mess that spends nights singing Cat Stevens songs, skipping stones in Paris, and writing and writing and writing about how much they desire meaning in life (and crying whenever they find it). Would you like to live in our neighborhood?
Sure we'd be the most hated family on the block, but at least we'd be interesting.