Friday, November 16, 2012

My Favorite Childhood Movies

I may be an author, but not everything is all about books. I also love movies. There's something about combining the visual with the story that brings things to life, although we all know that a book plays out in our minds much the same and is less limiting than a film.

However, that being said, I still LOVE movies. ;-)

Just a short synopsis: I was a strange child. Blame my parents and how they raised us, but we didn't grow up on cartoon kid movies. I remember the occasional Benji or (I'm actually blanking out right now)... for the most part, we watched "family" films. Then again, I don't know how "family" a James Bond movies is. My parents just learned to cover our eyes at all the bad stuff. We didn't go out to movies often, so a lot of our viewing pleasure took place at home. We were one of the cool families that had a VCR, because living overseas, it was the only way we were going to be able to really watch anything good. Friends from the States mailed us videotapes, and we lent them out to neighbors, like a neighborhood video store.

So my childhood crack was "Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger", or "Xanadu". Yes, I lived on rollerskates for at least two years.

This morning, I was trying to think of movies I saw as a child that were influential "Children's movies" (in other words, not my parents version of "You can watch Cheech and Chong and we'll make you go to the kitchen to make popcorn when the drugs and sex come on...which was most of the film"). Hey, I came out all right.


This movie is awesome squared. Why? Because it doesn't dumb down kids' intelligence. It's smart, it's dark, it's funny, it's got a message. If I can conjure up the summary without Google, it was about these rats that were part of an experiment that made them intelligent. One woman (mousette?) is trying to get someone to move her house, because it's in danger of getting mowed by the farmer plow. Her husband is deceased, and secrets are uncovered that put her family in mortal danger. The ending is truly powerful, and has a great message. I made my Godson watch this with me when he was six, and his grandpa gave me a the stink-eye when he saw some of the "scary scenes". We can't protect our children from the evils that exist in the world, but help them understand how to face it.
Courage of the heart is very rare. The stone has a power when it's there.

(So sue me)

I related to this movie because I, like most kids, was made fun of. We all go through the petty torments of childhood. We're too fat, too thin, too tall, too short, big ears, small eyes, big nose, crooked teeth, red hair, silly laugh..etc.

Dumbo is the the story of a Circus elephant who gives birth to a baby with ridiculously large ears. Well, actually the stork delivers the baby, but you know that old story. He's made into a circus clown where he is taunted. His mother goes on a rampage to protect him from mockery, and is locked up as a "mad elephant". Dumbo befriends a mouse who is the most positive thinking and encouraging friend a person could hope for. I think movies today may be more politically correct than they once were, but some of the old ones really dealt with real life issues. I felt for the little guy, and seeing the mothers love for her child was heartbreaking. Dumbo eventually proves himself, but I hope what kids would take away from this is the feelings of others, and that we shouldn't treat people differently because they are unique.

Runners up are "Charlotte's Web", although that movie depresses me a little bit, and "101 Dalmatians". I just love a movie with a great Cruella DeVille villain. Poor little puppies, and she wanted a pelt coat made out of them.

So that is my random post for the day. It's difficult for me to get into some of these kid movies, and maybe it's because I don't have to watch them as I don't have kids. My nephew loves superhero movies (much like I did) and enjoys watching Flash Gordon, Spiderman, and Superman. I did like "Toy Story", because it was something that adults could relate to about their childhood.

Maybe that's what I take to heart in my writing. Making a reader be able to connect with a story through common ground. There are a lot of characters in the Mageri series that may be like people you know, but it also may have more to do with the issues that they've endured, and the challenges that they face. Things we may face in our own lives. There were a lot of great movies that swept me away in all the fantasy as a kid, but the ones that stuck with me were the ones that broke my heart and showed me what love was all about.

1 comment:

  1. OMG! Dumbo! I loved that movie as a child, still do! Hell, I cried so much! But it is awesome!