• How do you solve a problem like Maria?

    I loved musicals, Disney films and family happy fare when I was little (as you do!) I used to dress up in cardboard princess tiara and wand and carry my wicker basket, and pretend I was Dorothy. I also liked the flying carpet in Aladdin, but that was harder to imitate.

    But I think one of my most fave movies remains the Sound of Music. It was on last night and I only caught the very end of it. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen it, but it’s always so familiar to me. Every song. Every scene. How ridiculously sweet and good the children are. The friggin catchy, timeless songs (I don’t think there is a single song in there that ain’t a classic – well the boy might beg to differ, but his ringtone is John Cena’s ring song, so whatever) – My Favourite Things, How do you solve a problem like Maria? Edelweiss, 16 going on 17, even Climb Every Mountain 😛 ..though maybe not I Have Confidence, that one was a bit of a bum note. And of course the Lonely Goatherd! Leigh ee oo leigh ee oo leigh!

    Of course there were things I didn’t pick up in my younger years. The captain’s slightly condescending, arrogant tone (why did Maria fall for him?). What was up with the lady in blue. Why they were singing as a family on stage and why they had to run, why were there people after them? And why they were on a mountain when it ended?

    Of course now I get that it was WWII and they wanted to deploy the captain, and he didn’t believe in it and wanted to stay with the family. However, I really don’t know about walking over the mountains to safety (Switzerland, I presume?) Is that possible? I mean, I’m sure it is, but under the conditions. They fled with literally nothing. They weren’t really dressed for mountain weather (what real mountain isn’t cold and windy and snowy, etc?) There certainly aren’t birds and flowers and grasses and handy footpaths over the alps. What would they eat and drink? They did have seven children after all, one of whom was barely old enough to be at school…

    I really would like to know how realistic that whole scene would be!

  • Bleeding heart

    I cried my eyes out last night at Forrest Gump. I absolutely love that movie. I have a pretty terrible memory, so everytime I watch it it seems fresh and I see new things that I didn’t notice or simply forgot over time. I have to admit I got annoyed a couple of times at the sheer improbability of all the things Forrest was responsible for (busting Watergate, making the famous smiley face logo), but I got over that, because really, isn’t that what it’s all about? Overcoming the odds and doing extraordinary things, despite being an ordinary, somewhat hindered person? I WANT to see Forrest doing well, I WANT to see him succeed, because he’s such a sweet, innocent, kind hearted person, and he deserves everything in the world.

    Some of my fave moments of the movie:

    “My favourite book!” – Pulling out a book from his son’s bag
    “Is he…smart? Or he is like….(me)” – Asking about his son
    “He’s just so…smart! He wrote you a letter….I can’t read it, so I’ll just leave it here for you” – Oh, how I cried at this one. Talking to his wife’s grave
    “Why don’t you love me? I’m not a smart man…but I know what love is”
    “It was the happiest moment of my life” Jenny wading through that gigantic pond thing in Washington to get to him….Incidentally, I am dying to know what the “one thing he had to say” about the war was. Would it be about Bubba? Shrimping? Lieutenant Daim? Ping Pong?
    “New legs!” To Lieutenant Daim, at his wedding, followed by “This is my Jenny” – finally, she is!
    Naming his boat Jenny, “The most beautiful name in the whole wide world”
    “Momma said it was just a little white lie, and wouldn’t hurt nobody” About being sponsored by that ping pong bat company
    “Life’s like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get” says his mum, to which he tells her she’s so good at explaining things so he understands

    Okay…that’s probably enough!

    I think I’m just feeling hormonal. I was teary eyed on the bus home, reading the paper and came across this column. Not normally a Colin James fan, but his short yet poignant description of the boy in questions left me damp eyed. Then a few pages on was a feature on the Congo atrocities, where 2 out of 3 women have been raped and the situation is still deteriorating, impossibly enough. Plus a full Africa map with arrows and boxes detailing the humanitarian crises in places like Zimbabwe. It’s all too much. I think about how much needless bloodshed and suffering us humans are inflicting on each other for NO good reason and it’s way too overwhelming. It makes me think how can we celebrate Christmas when this is going on? How can we keep grinding away in our capitalist economies, complaining about traffic and the weather – how can fat cat corporations in all good conscience keep turning massive profits while ignoring the plight of Africa?

    What can I do? I’m never going to be one of those souls who devotes their lives to bettering the children of Africa and go over there to live and teach and offer aid, but surely there is something I can do.