Movie binges and splash of inspiration

Author: Jax Cassidy // Category: ,
I've been preoccupied with life lately, so I thought I'd spend yesterday watching movies to get my mind off of things. Maybe provide me with some much needed inspiration. I had six movies to choose from, and wouldn't you know it, I popped in The Secret Life of Bees.

First off, have a box of kleenex ready. It's one of those tearjerkers that will leave you thinking....Overall, this was such an amazing movie with a really talented cast. Dakota Fanning is so convincing you just want to snatch her up and adopt her! I'll admit, I've been wanting to read the book by Sue Monk Kidd for a while now, but never had the time to sit down to do it. I'm glad I ended up watching the movie adaptation because nothing breathes life into a story more than a well-developed screenplay. I could go into a whole review of the movie, but I will just provide the blurb below.

What I will talk about today is the actual storytelling. As a writer, you want to write something that touches you on every level and this story did it for me. You've got this wounded heroine, Lily Owens, and her quest to find out this secret that's been haunting her for ten years. You can't help feeling this girl's pain and the adult-like effort she makes to understand what's happened in her life. She's one of those strong characters that makes you wish that you had the same optimism. It's also about accepting people for who they are. This was a story set against the beginning of the equal rights movement, including the power for blacks to vote. What I found particularly inspiring was Lily's ability to see past hate and color even though she had lived a hard life that would have impacted her views as an adult. The entire feel of the movie made you proud that we've overcome such horrible times and that today, we are accepting of others differences and making the effort to understand and explore the beauty of diversity. There is one pivotal scene in the entire movie that really stuck with me. Lily speaks to her friend and her first crush, who happens to be a young black male, that has just returned from a terrifying ordeal with a run in with local racists. These men pulled him out of a movie theater and beat him up when they realized he had gone with Lily. During this touching moment in which he is filled with anger and hate, Lily reminds him that he should not be like those men. That he should not let the hate eat him up or they have succeeded in changing him. Okay, so it's really bad paraphrasing on my part, but it was so beautifully written that you couldn't help but weep.

Well, what does that scene have to do with writers? With us? It made a lot of sense to me and I chose to interpret it my writerly way: Even in the most terrible of situations, a person must remember who they are and where they came from. A writer must find strength to be optimistic and believe in themselves and what is right. If we allow ourselves to give into rejection, give into those who are bitter from fear of failure, those who would most likely see us fail than succeed--we are allowing others too much power over who we are. Who we should be. As writers, it's easy to quit. It's easy to say, 'Hey, at least I tried.' By giving in, you're following the same path that will destroy your dreams without giving it a good shot. I've been in that place where I would have easily given in and taken a stable career that would have paid the bills, but I elected to follow my passions..and someday, I will make the list. Someday someone will read my books and my words will have impacted them. We have the ability to leave messages within our stories--our legacy. There's always a meaning within a meaning to my own writing and if, someday, one person figures out the message I've left behind: I have succeeded.

The Secret Life Of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

Living on a peach farm in South Carolina with her harsh, unyielding father, Lily Owens has shaped her entire life around one devastating, blurred memory--the afternoon her mother was killed, when Lily was four. Since then, her only real companion has been the fierce-hearted, and sometimes just fierce, black woman Rosaleen, who acts as her "stand-in mother."

When Rosaleen insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily knows it's time to spring them both free. They take off in the only direction Lily can think of, toward a town called Tiburon, South Carolina--a name she found on the back of a picture amid the few possessions left by her mother.

There they are taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters named May, June, and August. Lily thinks of them as the calendar sisters and enters their mesmerizing secret world of bees and honey, and of the Black Madonna who presides over this household of strong, wise women. Maternal loss and betrayal, guilt and forgiveness entwine in a story that leads Lily to the single thing her heart longs for most.

The Secret Life of Bees has a rare wisdom about life--about mothers and daughters and the women in our lives who become our true mothers. A remarkable story about the divine power of women and the transforming power of love, this is a stunning debut whose rich, assured, irresistible voice gathers us up and doesn't let go, not for a moment. It is the kind of novel that women share with each other and that mothers will hand down to their daughters for years to come.

5 Responses to "Movie binges and splash of inspiration"

Kelly Gay Says :
6:28 PM

"A writer must find strength to be optimistic and believe in themselves and what is right."

I so needed to hear this. :-)

Louisa Edwards Says :
7:56 AM

I movie binged last night! Penelope and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. I know, I know, but they were fun!

Anonymous Says :
9:06 AM

That boos BLISS. Kidd's verbs are the best, the prose is flowing and the book makes you cry just as much. That said, it's on my netflix que. Gawd, I love that book.


Jax Cassidy Says :
9:29 AM

Kelly - glad I was able to lend some words of encouragement. Most people tell me to shut up and get off my inspirational soapbox. LOL

Louisa - I need to watch the Traveling Pants movies. I have wanted to but I get distracted with Hallmark movies that make me cry.

Eva - Hummm, sounds interesting. Can't wait for my soap!

Dara Edmondson Says :
3:17 PM

I've seen the movie sitting at the video store and have passed it by. I'll have to go for it next time. Sounds like the perfect fare for a movie binge!

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