Saturday, September 10, 2005

How our families change us

It's so weird how just a few hours here have turned me back into a person I left long ago. We fall into these old patterns so regularly and easily. And they are survival mechanisms but they are also annoying, particularly if you feel like you've grown a lot since leaving.

I brought my family two of my favorite movies from last year to watch, "Saved!" and "Sideways". But my brother turned everyone off of them. Because Saved "ruthlessly mocks Christianity" and Sideways has a naked man in it (someone heard). Also it is all sex. That's right, bro. It's two hours of non-stop doin' it. It's actually a porno that somehow slipped an "R" rating which fooled critics and audiences into liking it and getting it all those silly Oscar noms. Of course that means nothing because "Kinsey" was also nominated.

Here's the funny thing - does anyone else in the world care about looking at a naked human being, or is it just them? Because sometimes I feel like it's so stupid to care about that. You go to the art museum and you don't disparage the nudity there. Everyone present is married so they've all seen naked men. What's the big deal?

But it would ruin it for me if I couldn't laugh at my favorite parts because I was nervous about how my family felt about the film. This has ruined many a movie for me over the years. They huff at nudity and talk about sex being "naughty" and make verbal tut-tutting over language (as per usual, violence bothers them not a bit). It makes it extremely difficult to enjoy anything that's been made for adults with them.

Not that I need to watch trash - but sometimes you do need to see the bad side of people for the film to get its point across. The sex and even language in Sideways isn't remotely glorified. It's obviously wrong. And the film presents it as such. And it's like real life.

But no, they'd rather watch "The Pacifier" with Vin Diesel. Because that's absolutely nothing like real life. And god help us if we have to burst the Christian bubble.

I complain a lot but of course I love them. In fact, the worst part is that I feel bad because they make me feel like I'm a bad person. I don't like them thinking badly of me and I'm afraid they do because of what I choose to watch. What I enjoy. I feel lower, and then my ego kicks in and I feel higher, and neither is right.

I'm writing so much more than I'd planned on vacation. I guess there's a lot to say around the fam. My dad apologized by the way, although I have a pretty strong feeling that he was told to do so.

*sigh* Keep writing me. I need support!


car said...

so how did you like the Passion of Christ? Is this just another one of those filthy hippie blogs?

JTB said...

Wow, you really attract the crazies around here. You should get a badge.

I always feel that way around my family, although it doesn't get so angst-ridden for me. What's even weirder is feeling myself slip into new patterns of child-likeness in my in-law's family. That always throws me.

Movie suggestion: perhaps everyone could come together around Napoleon Dynamite? No cursing, no nudity, a little low-key violence (I mean, the cow does get shot in front of the kids on the schoolbus and all)...perhaps, "if you watch this movie, all your wildest dreams will come true"?

Stasi said...

I found the Passion to be too violent for my tastes. It felt more like a horror film to me than a serious meditation on Christ's suffering. Gibson just took it too far.

LutheranChik said...

Because of my current living situation -- my elderly mom is living with me -- it's virtually impossible for me to watch an R-rated film at home. [rueful grin] I remember bringing "Fargo" home to watch when it came out on video, and the first 15 minutes -- the scene with the villains and the hookers -- completely unnerved my poor mother.

Kyle said...

My preacher dad went through a phase when I was in late-high-school/early college...he stopped policing what I watched, he just felt the need to sit down long enough to watch it with me and voice his disapproval.

PULP FICTION: (opens the newspaper after 15 minutes)

(2hr. 15 min. pause)

DAD: That movie's garbage.

ME: Dad, you won't like it.

DAD: How do you know I won't like it?

ME: I just know.

DAD: (settling into his La-Z-Boy) I might find it interesting.

ME: (Sighing)

(15-minute pause)

DAD: (opens the newspaper)

OH, and that car guy is funny. Did you check out his blog?

WritingMom said...

It's taken me a long time, but I finally accepted that while I love my family of origin and they love me, we don't really like each other that much. We probably wouldn't choose each other to spend time with were we not related. It's sad, but it's true, and when I stop trying to make myself into someone they will like, we're all a lot more relaxed and happy.

It also helps to be 3000 miles away...

Anonymous said...

Oh, I so empathize with this -- my own issues with my family are different from yours, but I know what you mean about how a few hours "back home" can bring up all kinds of old stuff again.

FWIW, I adored "Saved!" I'm not Christian, of course, but in the end I felt the movie was anti-fundamentalist (and anti- a certain kind of unthinking dogmatism) but not anti-Christian, necessarily -- indeed it felt very Christian to me, by the end...