It’s always fun to go to the movies, especially when some of my favorites are on screen. It’s been a pretty good week with appearances by Adrien Brody, Chris Cooper, Jamie Bell, Jack Black and His Eyebrows, William Hurt ... if only we could have worked Andy Garcia into the mix.
“Syriana” is the best film I’ve seen this year. The film was deeply interesting and presented plenty to think about. (I see a hybrid car in my future.) I didn’t know what was going on every single minute, which was wonderful.
After so many months without anything of interest at the cinema, I punched the “frequent moviegoer” card many times: “The Squid and The Whale” (my friend from the rental store was there), “Memoirs of a Geisha,” “King Kong.”
I finally rented “Murderball,” a documentary about quadriplegic rugby and the U.S. Paralympic Rugby Team. I had been looking forward to it for a long time – I seemed to hear about it everywhere this summer. I remember seeing a “Tonight Show” interview with one of the stars while I was in that Paducah hotel room and talking about the movie with my Birmingham friends.
“Murderball” was worth the wait. It was thought-provoking and funny and sobering. (The language is as rough as the game, so be forewarned.) The characters are hardheaded, adventure seeking types who, through childhood illness or some drunken stupidity, found themselves in wheelchairs. It’s become their passion and they try to help new quadriplegics adjust to these changes as they have, by introducing them to rugby. At the end of the movie the U.S. team visits a group of new quads – they are Iraqi war veterans, including a kid who looks barely old enough to carry the newspaper, let alone a weapon. I watched his first self-conscious attempts at wheelchair rugby through hot, angry tears. What in the world are we doing over there?
So today, while I would have much rather stayed in my pajamas and watched Charlie Rose, I got dressed and went to the gym. I walked because I can, and it seemed ungrateful not to after seeing that film.