The Plan

I just finished watching The Adjustment Bureau on the recommendation of a friend.  I’m surprised I didn’t see it in the theatre as I’m a big Matt Damon fan and I think Emily Blunt is fantastic to watch.  Most likely I just got busy doing other things and it was out of the theaters before I made time to see it.  For whatever reason, I missed it’s general release but on a recent trip, this was the movie that was being played coincidentally westbound and eastbound.  Turns out maintenance hadn’t put the correct film on the westbound plane loading this one instead.  So I was kind of getting the message that I should be watching this film.  I’d put it in my Netflix queue but it was in the middle of the list.  Alright, alright, I’ll watch it.  Sheesh.

The story was very well done, with exciting twists and turns, love, dance, politics, religion, loss.  You name it, it was in the film in a well crafted way.  I most definitely can recommend it’s watching.  But because of our descent and arrival at our destination, I missed the very last scene of the film so I was very happy to have it replayed on the journey home.  And it holds up well to being replayed.  I picked up things I’d missed before.  Anywho the VO at the end, and I don’t think this will ruin the story for you, spoke about The Plan.  The Plan for each of us.  And how we have a choice.  No matter what or how many obstacles are thrown in our path, we can choose go along with them on path of least resistance, or we can to plow right through them to achieve what we want.  The second option isn’t going to be easy, but it’s going to be worth it.  Just watch.

It’s all personal

I hope you can forgive me for another movie reference.  As an actress, so many of my touchstones come from the world of cinema.  As I noted the other day in my post There’s No Place Like Home, I watched the movie You’ve Got Mail with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks.  It’s a wonderful movie and one that was fun to revisit for a while.  It’s funny how things hit you differently at different times.  Since I’d seen it a bunch when it first came out, I was reacquainting myself with some of the great writing Nora Ephron did on this film.  But this time, a section of dialogue jumped out at me which it hadn’t done before.  It was when Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) goes to Kathleen’s (Meg Ryan) apartment after her store closed because he’s found out she’s sick with a bad cold.  She’s not very gracious about the visit and is not polite to him at all.  He says to her “It wasn’t personal“.  She replies “What is that supposed to mean? I am so sick of that. All that means is that it wasn’t personal to you. But it was personal to me. It’s *personal* to a lot of people. And what’s so wrong with being personal, anyway?”  He doesn’t quit know what to say to this challenge so he replies very eloquently “uh, nothing“.  She retorts, “Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal.

This stood out to me as if Klieg lights were shined directly on the text.  My whole life I’ve been told I take things too personally.  In business, when I was passed over for a promotion for someone that was still in the training program, I was told this was nothing personal, just the best decision for the business (really?  it had nothing to do with the fact his salary was half of mine?!).  In acting when you are the product, you work your entire career to not take the rejection personally.  You are too blond, brunette, tall, short, green eyed, female, whatever.  How on earth those comments can’t be taken personally is beyond me!

It is personal to me as I’m sure it is to the majority of people walking around.  Dismissing customers, comments, complaints & suggestions with a flip “It’s not personal” does a disservice to the integrity of a human connection.  It’s saying your priorities are more important than the other persons.  Sometimes it’s an easy cop-out to a difficult situation or a way to avoid a truthful confrontation.  But don’t fool yourself, it may not be personal to you, but it’s very personal to the other person.  Remembering that fact may help find a better way to express yourself.

Tour De Force

Yesterday was the 60th anniversary of the premiere of the epic Civil War saga, Gone With the Wind.  Turner Classic Movies played the film in it’s entirety with no interruptions.  I happened to catch it just as Atlanta was falling to those Yankees.  So I missed some of my favorites scenes with the prettiest dresses at the beginning of the movie.  After all, what girl didn’t imagine herself at the barbeque in that beautiful green dress that her mammy deemed so inappropriate because it showed her shoulders before evening.  On top of that, she was surrounded by all the handsomest beaux in the county.  Truly a dream!

I promptly sat down and watched the remainder of the movie.  I still turned my eyes at the most difficult to watch scenes of war and suffering and this time turned the sound down.  But this time around, I was struck by how amazing the film was.  I don’t know if you know any of the history of this movie and all the difficulty that happened in trying to get it made.  The short end of the story is they went through multiple directors, many rewrites, budget issues, casting challenges.  You name it, they experienced it.  They even started filming before the role of Scarlett O’Hara was even cast.  But through it all, what remained was one of the most exciting, visually engaging and well produced films of history.  I’d forgotten how much I loved this movie.

I’d also forgotten the incredible writing that the film contained.  My favorite line comes at the end of the movie.  No not the one Clark Gable is remembered for, the classic “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn”, but instead the one that Scarlett says after he leaves.  In her grief and sadness as she is trying to figure out her next step, she makes the statement that is my favorite-“Tomorrow is another day”.  I love this.  Tomorrow is another day, it is a new beginning, a new start, an opportunity to do the right thing and take the next chance.  That is the promise made to us.  We will have another go at it.  If we are lucky it will happen with beautiful clothes and fabulous lighting but if that isn’t the case, grab at it anyway with both hands and make the best of it.