Gold Fingers

This may sound shallow because I am shallow –  but I have really enjoyed the Sage Kotsenburg interviews.

And yes, I’m a snowboarder with a couple of broken bones and a huge heart for the sport. But that’s not it.  Well, maybe a little.

But it’s him. His character.  His “I can’t believe I did it” smile.  Oh hell, let’s not beat around the bush.

It’s a shit eating grin. And why not?    Sage Kosenburg

Not only did he win a gold, it was the first gold in the entire Sochi Olympics!

As he grins ear to ear, he wraps his fingers around that gold medal. The richest gold per ounce. Gold that represents years of hard work, day in and day out. When nobody is watching. Or worse, when the whole world is watching the ‘agony of defeat’.

And of course, we can’t forget the coveted Oscar. Another gold of excellence. As Academy members  met today for their annual Oscar lunch, more gold medals were racking up in Sochi.

After all, this week is Sochi week.

Like skiing, snowboarding, skating – so many sports – we will fall over and over if we’re ever going to improve. I hate that part. Most of the time.

Some falls remind us not to take ourselves or life too seriously. Other falls remind us to take everything more seriously.

The Olympic podium reminds everyone, all over the world, rich or poor, that the only way we can excel, is by picking ourselves up after the fall.

Congratulations to all the gold, silver and bronze medalists.  Regardless of your country.

After all, this is the Olympics.

Witness

Last night I settled in for a long winter’s nightcap of hot chocolate and a great movie.

The 1985 film classic, Witness, directed by Peter Weir, is a cinematic masterpiece with a compelling script written by William Kelley, along with Pamela and Earl W. Wallace. And an all star cast.

Samuel Identifies photo or murderer

Samuel identifies murderer

A young Amish boy, Samuel (Luke Haas) is the sole witness to a murder.  This innocent kid goes to a big city bathroom at the wrong place, wrong time.   When Policeman John Book (Harrison Ford) realizes the murder was done by one of his own, he flees with the boy and his Mom, Rachel (Kelly McGinnis) to their Amish world.

The Amish life is a haven and sharp contrast to the gritty city life. A safe retreat for both the Amish and one angry cop.  The film highlights the beauty of that serenity in a crazy world.

Thirty years later, the Amish have a reality show.  And we’re all running around with cell phones glued to our ears.

My how things have changed.

Every parent's nightmare

Every parent’s nightmare

As the film credits for Witness slipped down the screen,   I thought of  real life children and staff who witnessed 26 murders.

Twenty six murders. Twenty of them children.

There was no cinematic masterpiece with a spellbinding music score.  Only sheer horror.

A year ago, a school in Newtown lost its innocence as 26 people lost their lives.  We, as a country, bore witness with live coverage as the horrific tragedy unfolded.

And now a year later, our hearts still ache as Newtown families wait and wonder if their pain will ever go away.

This week, major news outlets will reflect one of, if not  the darkest day in our history.  We will have ‘dialogue’ with talking heads.  As there  should be.

But will there be hard core solutions to the bullying and murders in our schools? In our society?

As a culture, we know the cost of the latest cell phones, Tessla stock and film budgets.

pb-121812-newtown-return-school-jsa-2_photoblog900

Newtown children return to school

But what’s the cost of a life?

A teacher’s life?

A child’s life?

On a school playground?

In a classroom?

Outrageous.

You had me at Merlot

It’s no secret that I’m a huge Cameron Crowe fan.  So when my friend Mary gave me a wine stopper that reads “You had me at Merlot”….well, I was beyond thrilled.

There’s just something about Mary.

And what about Cameron? Without him, that play on words wouldn’t exist.

Movies are a part of our vernacular.  Vernacular.  Trying saying that after a couple glasses of Merlot. I dare you. But it’s true.  The vernacular part.  And the other part…about the Merlot.

Now, where was I?

How To Cook A Turkey

In a world of instant everything, movies linger in our soul long after the scent of fresh movie popcorn has gone stale.

We can go on Facebook or Instagram and see thousands of pictures that tell a story.  But would you spend two hours of free time and buy expensive popcorn to see them?

Movies move us…literally.  To another place, time, relationship, trip, journey, crisis.  A good movie will exhaust you and exhilarate you.  All at the same time.

Kind of like sex.

Or music.

Or words.

I listen to film scores.  Often.  I can be doing taxes or writing a pivotal scene and yet, for that moment in time, I am transported to another  place and time.  I may have just figured out that I owe the IRS way too much money but hey, I’m having breakfast at Tiffany’s.  With Audrey, no less.

Lost in the moment.

Moving moments.

Until my husband or one of my sons walk in….

“Where’s the remote?”

“Have you seen my wetsuit?”

“What time is Thanksgiving dinner?”

“I wish Grandma Norma and Boompa were still with us.”

And at that moment, I’m thankful to be in the moment, enjoying the real characters in my life.  They don’t pay a whole lot but they enrich my lives in ways I never knew.

And frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.  Because I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and all the characters in your life….

Real.

Or imagined.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Freddy Carrillo’s Day Off

Starting a new film project is like the first day of school.  New supplies, sharpened pencils and fleeting hopes of straight A’s – and the coveted ‘Most Likely To Succeed’ awards.

Freddy Would Go!

In the school of life, Freddy has succeeded many times over.  A resourceful, charming guy that knows how to get things done with an infectious smile in his pursuit to live each and every day to the fullest.

Sometimes with his wheelchair.  Sometimes without.

In this short film, an idyllic weather forecast beckons Freddy to call in ‘sick’ at his day job due to  a winter bug.  He’s bugging to do something fun but he can’t decide.  Should he  skateboard?  Surf?  Ski?

Oh heck, maybe all of the above…

A small film about a big personality.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clueless in Orange County

You had me at....I found this sign recently at one of my favorite stores.  I was so smitten, I completely forgot what I came in the store for.   I promptly dropped it in my basket, smiling all the way to the cash register.

But not without a couple of pop quizzes.

Shoppers jabbed each other, pointing and laughing with a familiarity:

SHOPPER 1

That Meg Ryan movie….’Sleepless in Seattle’?

SHOPPER 2

Nah…..

SHOPPER 1

Yes!

SHOPPER 2

No – the other one.  Where she fakes the big O.

More strangers gazed at one another, stumped by those five little words.

STRANGER 1

Tom Hanks.  ‘BIG’!

STRANGER 2

I don’t think so…

A lone woman approached my cart, confiding to the customers  in the checkout line.  A guessing game kicked in.

LONE WOMAN

Tom Cruise. ‘Magnolia’.

CUSTOMER 1

No,  the writer…Cameron.

CUSTOMER 2

James Cameron?

CUSTOMER 1

The other Cameron.

LONE WOMAN

Crowe.  Cameron Crowe.

CUSTOMER 1

‘Almost Famous’!!!!

CUSTOMER 2

Yeah, that’s it!

Well, almost.  I felt like a Game Show Host, smiling back at them like a Cheshire cat.

As the Cashier rang up my purchase, she waved the sign to another cashier.

CASHIER 1

Is this from a song or a movie?

CASHIER 2

Who has time to watch movies?

CASHIER 1

Will that be all for you, Ma’am?

The Game Show Host kicked in again, refusing to divulge the answer.  Besides, I was slightly annoyed.

MOIS

Yes….But – “Ma’am” should be banned from the English language.

For those of you who have explored this website, you know I’m a huge Cameron Crowe fan.  And ‘You had me at hello’ is one of my favorite all time one liners.  From the film—

Drumroll….

JERRY MAGUIRE.

The actor?

TOM CRUISE.

The scene?

Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) professes his love to Dorothy (Rene Zellwegger)  at a woman’s support group.

As I drove home, I reveled in the impact of screenwriters.  Screenwriters are like bail bonds men.  There when you need them to bail you out.   In that moment, you may not know the film or actor offhand, but when you’re in hot water with the Mrs.,  the Landlord or the Boss,  you can remember a line – verbatim.

JESSEP

You can’t handle the truth!

CHARLIE

K-Mart sucks.

ANITA

Feck you.

 Thanks Ron, Aaron and Cameron.  You had me at hello.

 

JESSEP – Jack Nicholson.   A FEW GOOD MEN.   Writer:  Aaron Sorkin

CHARLIE- Tom Cruise.  RAINMAN.  Writer:  Ron Bass

ANITA  – Zoey Deschanel.  ALMOST FAMOUS.  Writer:  Cameron Crowe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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