Monday, July 17, 2006

Garden State

It's been a while since I saw this movie but I remember being so struck by it that I watched it again a few more times in the same week and I usually don't do that at least not right away. Natile Portman’s role is not to be underrated or tossed off as anything other than brilliant. We have a real actress here with serious acting chops and she's (what) still in her twenties. I can not wait to see how her career unfolds further and I think we have all been served notice. Zach Braff's script is engaging if modest and I think I like that it is so uncluttered. He's trying to get at several things including over medication by both prescription and street drugs. I can't and won't attempt to sum up his movie in a pithy sentence or two but there is a way to live life pursuing worthy goals with a purpose. Pursuing opportunities great and small it is the little things that fuel our fire and rekindle our spirit like an old locket or a simple hug. Quirkiness for quirkiness sake no I wouldn't accept that as a life style but quirky and eccentric on the outside can be a sign post that something genuine is driving heartfelt intention. Intention often gets confused or surpressed with a prepackaged idea or goal (being a star in Hollywood gives you fulfillment – maybe not) but intention sheds light on purpose and gives real meaning to every waking day – even after the kids have grown and gone. We are confronted with the abyss as a blank and unrealized future but each of us with the opportunity to affect our circle, family, friends, neighborhood and community. How we fill the abyss with meaning, purpose or idleness and distraction gives way to feeling fulfilled or horribly stymied and bored. Garden State is a beautiful movie – I really loved it and I hope its stars stay true to their visions and don’t get caught up in the emptiness of fame for fames sake. If they don’t we can look forward to a wonderful creativity that gives us all a chance to be reminded that the world is amazing and our lives in it are just the same. What I really loved about this movie is that nothing exploded and there were no guns needed to carry the fun, thoughtful, entertaining script. Now go give your mother a hug!

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