Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Pursuit of Happiness...

Just got back from seeing "The Pursuit of Happiness" starring Will Smith and his son Jaden Smith. The movie is based on the true story of Chris Gardner, as single father who accepted an internship with no wage for three months with a brokerage company, in the hopes of gaining a position with the company. The cost of him accepting the non-paying internship was that he and his son temporary became homeless.

I LOVE Will Smith, well the image of him anyway. Who knows, in real life he might be a bastard, but certainly the public persona is that of a dedicated, adoring father and husband. He also exudes charm, wit and intelligence (three of my favourite human traits). So, I felt certain I'd love this movie, where he seemed to be putting so much of himself into the role of this dedicated father pursuing his dream.

I LOVE stories about people pursuing their dream, which is probably why I have an ever expanding collection of dance movies, as dance movies are often about people sacreficing for the dream.

I am, myself, a person who is dedicated to "the dream". my dream... I completely identify with the feelings of the triumphant moment, when the dream is realised, as so when I watched the movie tonight, I didn't cry when Chris Gardner had to lock him and his son in the public toilet overnight because they had no where else to go. I didn't cry when the little boy lost his toy and had to leave it behind. I didn't even cry when the two main characters didn't get into the shelter for the night and the background music plucked the heartstrings with a ever melancholy rendition of "Bridge Over Troubled Waters".

I cried when Chris Gardner finally got the job and choked back his own tears of happiness (and probably relief because all the sacrefice wasn't in vain)!

I have to say though. On Oprah the other day when they were interviewing Chris Gardner (the real CG - who, btw has a walk on in the last scene of the movie, so watch out for him), O kept repeating. "This could only happen in America, only in America!" Of course, what she meant was, only in America can a homeless person become a millionaire, as long as they have a dream and initiative and are willing to work for it, but seiously... Only in America can hardworking people end up homeless after being chucked out on the street with NO NOTICE! Bloody hell, it's not like Chris Gardner started with nothing, he just lost everything because minimum wage in the US is criminally low, and there is no real social security (10 weeks of unemployment benefits in YOUR LIFETIME???).

As for going from being on the street to becoming a millionaire, I think that is probably possible anywhere, America doesn't hold the monopoly on dreaming hard and working hard for the dream.

Ah, yes, but I certainly feel replenished with hope and determination and motivation and all that good stuff having seen this movie. It might have to be added to my DVD collection.


Jen said...

I loved this movie, for the same reasons that you have stated, I love watching movies/ shows about people fulfilling their dreams.

I also didn't really get emotional about things until the end when he did realise his dreams. What the movie did for me though was opened my eyes to just how much I really do have. When things are bad I tend to dwell on what I don't have whether it be in the material sense or the emotional. I walked away from this movie though feeling an incredible sense of power of what I could achieve if I really strived too, and just how much I already have behind me to help me reach my goals.

Your comment about only in America I agree with as well, realising your dreams could happen anywhere!

Oh and now I need to watch it again to see the real Chris Gardner's walk on appearance! ;)

Juniper said...

I loved the movie too Sif, glad I joined you! I was mostly saddened by how many people lined up for emergency accomodation - unbelievable - the system over there is TERRIBLE!

Ish said...

I want to see this movie will definately go now:)

Juniper said...

You shoud Loz, Will Smith is a bit of a cutie!

Amanda O. said...

Sounds like a great movie, one I'll have to make a point of catching when it comes out on movie! (I haven't watched at the theater in... umm... a long time!) Unfortunately it is the case with minimum wage being piss poor, even most non-degree jobs really, and assistance being minimal and avoided by many who could use it because of the stigma. :-\

Good Job!