Saturday, March 31, 2007

Stranger Than Fiction & The Guardian

If you go to Will Ferrell movies for the sophomoric humor and pratfalls, Stranger Than Fiction is not for you. Ferrell was nominated for a Golden Globe for his portrayal of sad sack Harold Crick whose existence is simply an exercise in mathematics until one morning in the midst of his exactly 76 strokes of brushing his teeth, he hears his life’s narration. The narrator is obviously omniscient regarding his life, so now Harold Crick must discover if he is in a comedy which ends in a marriage or a tragedy which ends in death.

I loved this movie. The Christian analogy to our lives is blatant – will we be in a comedy which ends in a marriage, part of the bride of Christ (the Church) or will our lives be a tragedy which ends in our death? The centrality of Harold’s watch and numbers in his life is reminiscent of Jesus teaching that the very hairs on our head are numbered (Matthew 10:30; Luke 12:7) and Psalm 90:12, “So teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

Costar Emma Thompson gives her usual wonderful performance and Dustin Hoffman adds another quirky character to his resume. Harold Crick's life is a rather satisfying one to watch.

Every field of military service has their heroic movie – this is the Coast Guard’s. Kevin Coster and Ashton Kutcher aren’t names that usually draw me to movies, but we gave this one a shot.
My hubby summed it up pretty well, “This is Top Gun on the water with a little Officer & A Gentleman and Heartbreak Ridge thrown in.” He is exactly right. The movie is formulaic, but for me, it didn’t matter. I knew what was going to happen, but I still enjoyed the ride. There are some nice, albeit under-developed, themes and subplots in the movie. After watching The Guardian, I came away with a renewed appreciation for the work of the Coast Guard’s rescue swimmers.

For a factual recounting of the heroism of these men and women, check out the book, “So Others May Live” by Martha LaGuardia-Kotite.

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