Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

23 years gives some new perspective.

Back in 1989, John Cusack starred in a movie called Say Anything...
It is largely remembered for its scene with Cusack's character Lloyd Dobler serenading Ione Skye's character (Diane Court) with a boom box held over his head playing "In Your Eyes". It's also remembered for this scene, when the father of his valedictorian, fellowship-winning girlfriend asks him what he wants to do with his life.

The father (John Mahoney as Jim Court) has an incredibly open relationship with his daughter, and when he expresses his concerns about her underachiever boyfriend, Diane breaks up with Lloyd Dobler to be around her dad more before she goes to her fellowship in England. This breakup is trumped by the serenading by Dobler, and Diane and Lloyd somehow work their relationship out, in spite of everything.

My 14 year-old honors student daughter was watching that movie in her bedroom last night when I came home for lunch. I watched a few minutes of it with her. And man, has that movie changed.

First, I seem to have misremembered that it was called a "romantic comedy." No. There is nothing funny about this movie. It is a tragedy of epic proportions. The real hero of the story, the father Jim Court? He gets locked up for tax evasion. The sweet valedictorian ends up with the villain of the tale, that shiftless Lloyd Dobler.

At least, that's how it looked to me, now.

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4 Comments:

At Saturday, August 25, 2012 9:00:00 AM, Blogger Old NFO said...

Hate to say it, but I don't remember that one... I'm sadly lacking in movie trivia...

 
At Saturday, August 25, 2012 10:26:00 AM, Anonymous Shrimp said...

I never viewed it as a comedy, per se. It has funny moments, but I don't recall the movie being 'laugh out loud' funny--it was more of a 'ha! isn't that the truth,' kind of funny.

And I never, even now, viewed Jim Court as anything except despicable for stealing from old folks that were placed in his care. The cheating on the taxes was just the way they caught him. If all he had done was cheat on his taxes, I would tend to view him differently. But theft is not a virtue, and certainly not honorable.

Yes, he was devoted to his daughter, and he would have moved heaven and earth for her, but that doesn't excuse stealing from other folks, nor does it speak well of his character. He had some heroic qualities; that doesn't make him the hero.

As for Lloyd, I don't think shiftless is the appropriate word. He had ambition, and trained hard (or it seemed that he did) to become a kickboxer. It may not have been a normal career path, but it was something that he wanted to pursue, and had a plan to do so.

As a father with two young daughters myself, I would think my girls could certainly do a lot worse than a Lloyd Dobler.

 
At Saturday, August 25, 2012 4:16:00 PM, Blogger Matt G said...

Yeah, only, I wasn't in the least interested in the real reasons he was going to jail. I was just recognizing through the narrow view of fatherhood that he had a damn good point in being unhappy with this punk who came to interfere with his dreams for his daughters.

 
At Saturday, August 25, 2012 8:00:00 PM, Anonymous Shrimp said...

Yeah, as a father, I get that.

 

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