Saturday, April 4, 2009

Family movie night

As much as I had visions of raising my children without television, we are a family that loves our movies. I can hear my mother's tisking tongue and see her wagging finger in my mind when I think of how many movies Rowan has seen in his short two and a half years of life. He was sleeping in my arms at our local drive-in his first summer, nursing and dreaming while my husband and I enjoyed the season's blockbusters. Maybe his love of movies happend by osmosis. I've been reading a series of theortical/spiritual books that suggest what a mother thinks while she's nursing has an affect on the life of the child. Yikes! Whatever the reason, Rowan absolutely adores a good film.

We took him to see Monsters vs Aliens in 3D on opening night. (That's Rowan's "date" Ava on the left looking at the camera and Rowan on the right enthralled by the screen. We double family dated with some close friends who have a 4-year-old and a 1-year-old.) On all counts, it was a great movie and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Then, of course, I had to keep thinking about the damned movie. It was so made for parents my age. Anyone who grew up watching the GenX classics featuring motley outcasts who save the world/get the girl/get the guy/make the team/etc., etc., etc., will appreciate the underlying symbolism and messaging. From cookie-cutter references (the suburban hometown party, the evil alien destroying his own world to create one populated entirely by clones of himself) to mindless government gags, it's like one big inside joke created by a bunch of powerful geeks. Despite the big wigs not marketing it as a "strong girl" movie, the protagonist is definitely Ginormica and the storyline centers around her literal and metaphorical metamorphasis from shallow girl "living the dream life" to confident freak finding her way in a world that finds her simultaneously amazing and revolting. Sounds about right to me.

I'd like to see it again when I'm not balancing a rootbeer float with one hand, pushing Annie's cheddar bunnies and Twizzlers on the 1-year-old to keep him quiet with the other hand, and keeping an eye on Rowan's reaction to the 3D.

This weekend we accidentally rented a dubbed Chinese Disney flick called The Magic Gourd. But the psychological seisures I gave myself after thinking too hard about this one is a whoooole nother ball of yarn. Let's just say it veered into musings on how The Magic Gourd would be a great example of how one might make a film for children about a boy's battle with schizophrenia. Oy vey! Where do I get these things?


Cave Mother said...

3D monsters must indeed be a mind expanding experience for a baby. Did he flinch when they cam right for him?

Amanda said...

Not at all. In fact, he was a study in perfect acceptance of an alternative reality. No grabbing at the floating things or flinching or even a surprised expression. Same goes for the 4-year-old and the one-year-old with us. It was kind of weird!

Launi said...

I love it when the baby is still nursing and you can go to all the movies and no one is the wiser that you have a warm, contented little soul happily snacking away. We were at a particularly good show once and at one very tense scene, the audience was completely silent. Of course, this is when my sweet baby decided to gulp a few times and heave a very vocal sigh. The whole building busted up laughing! We became a big fan of HOME videos after that. Beats nasty old regular TV any day! :]

sol y luna said...

Great post! I love that you're sharing your passion with your kids, and I'm sure they'll grow up with a perfect balance of nourished imagination and your analytical vision.

I'd love to read your indepth analysis of the Magic Gourd.