My friend Paul, the "youngest" of the Indian Three Stooges, whom I met in Miami, made an immense impression on me. But don't tell him that, as he'll just get a big head. haha! Despite his bad habit (he knows what it is and no I am not being judgmental Paul, just "caring") this fellow smiled a lot but didn't speak much. BUT, when he did speak, he emanated a level of awareness about LIFE in how he selected to communicate his ideas and thoughts, that was quite memorable to me. So now it's time to make Paul blush, like I did Rajeev.
There are few people that I meet whom I connect with on the philosophical level. I think you know who your friends are, if you can disagree with them, and still come away from those disagreements as friends. No? Actually, many times I come away from these thought provoking discussions/debates with a smile on my face and in admiration of how some friends project their viewpoints.
So, in South Beach a few weeks back, after dinner while everyone was relaxing with their cocktails, Lisa was sipping her lovely ice tea. Paul was very silent so I was challenged to get him more involved in our conversation. I always like to involve everyone in the discussion(s) and Paul seemed to be drifting into his own quiet world. I think he was trying to mentally "escape" but being the bad self that I am sometimes, I didn't let him. HAHA!
Besides, conversations are two or more ways with two or more people, right? Right. You can't have a conversation if only one person is talking. After some prodding by moi, my new friend, all of a sudden started talking about how a certain movie changed his outlook on life. He asked if I saw it. And uhmmmm I had to admit that I hadn't because I don't have much time to indulge in movies nor watch TV these days. He said "YOU HAVE TO WATCH IT!" Okay Okay, I promised to and we went on to discuss other topics.
When I landed at LAX April 14th, arriving home after a one hour delayed flight on American Airlines, Nick and I went straight to get some good old Chinese deli food. This is a staple I NEED after a long week of being away from home. It's a tradition and there's nothing like Chinese roast duck (No in depth food talk this morning, but maybe next time I'll recommend some good restaurants.) During dinner, I was thinking about Paul's recommendation and said to Nick "WE NEED TO GO TO BLOCKBUSTERS!" (No I didn't yell but I thought typing in caps would be a dramatic effect to get your attention.) So I found the movie, THE MOVIE - Crash and as promised, made time to watch it the following night.
Of course I immediately emailed Paul to let him know that I had the movie and was going to critique it. I can't assume everyone is like me and checks emails (a thousand times.. okay I'm exaggerating.. MANY times during the day) but I haven't heard from Paul "yet", so maybe he is reading my blog instead. I hope he is reading, because I want him to know that I DID watch Crash per his recommendations. I now have this movie listed as one of my all time "favorites". (Perhaps I will bump into Paul at Bead Expo Phoenix next week.)
Well there is a reason Crash won the 78th Academy Awards for Best Picture. Why it didn't win for Best Director, I can't tell you because a Best Picture had to have been directed by a heck of a great director, no? How does that work? Anyhow, I digress.
Why am I writing about a movie? THE Movie Crash. This blog is about my interests, my writings and my passions. I select the "topics" I choose to write about in this public forum and I write when the mood strikes (even at this crazy hour!) There could be a million other subjects I could be writing about but I selected Crash, tonight. (Yes I am up in the wee hours again as I seem to be more productive at these crazy times of the day.) I want to encourage all of you who haven't watched the movie yet, to go rent it. Make sure you rent the 2005 version not the 1994. Will it change your life, like it did Paul's? Maybe yes, maybe no. Did it change my life? No. Why? Because I already knew racial stereotypes, prejudices and bigotry existed in this world. Seeing it on the big screen only made it more "real"? No, it IS real as real is. The movie's message is one that we should all be in tuned with, our own inner dark side. We all have a good and a bad side, in each of us. The point is how do you control the bad and emanate the good? Some people have more bad in them than good and others have more good which overcomes the bad.
In 24 hours, you get to see some of the happenings that occur every day of our every lives. Open your eyes and see, then change to become a better person, if you are not already. Love thy neighbor and your neighbor will love you back. Love thy enemy? Well, that is going a bit too far for me. There is a place and a time for all actions as well as reactions. Use your judgment and if you don't have good judgment then ask a friend, a sister, a brother, a mother, a father or anyone else that you feel has good sense.
Remember this "What goes around, comes around" Bad karma yields bad karma. Read on for more info on the movie, Crash! then run, don't walk, to rent this movie. It will open your eyes wider and allow you to see better, if you were blind to begin with on this societal plague.
According to Webster Online, Crash may refer to:
1 a: to break violently and noisily : smash b: to damage (an airplane) in landing
2 a: to cause to make a loud noise
3: to enter or attend without invitation or without paying <crash the party>
4: to move toward aggressively (as in fighting for a rebound)
5: to cause (a computer system, component, or program) to crash
1 a: to break or go to pieces with or as if with violence and noise b: to fall, land, or hit with destructive force c: to decline suddenly and steeply d of a computer system, component, or program : to suffer a sudden major failure usually with attendant loss of data
2: to make a smashing noise
3: to move or force one's way with or as if with a crash <crashes into the room>
4slang : to experience the aftereffects (as lethargy or depression) of a usually prolonged episode of drug use (as of amphetamines)
5slang : to go to bed or fall asleep; also : to reside temporarily : stay <crashing with friends for a few days>
Crash is an acclaimed Academy Award-winning drama film directed by Paul Haggis. It premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in September 2004, and was released internationally in 2005. The film is about racial and social tensions in Los Angeles. It won three Oscars for Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay and Best Editing of 2005 at the 78th Academy Awards.
Diving headlong into the diverse melting pot of post-9/11 LA, this compelling urban drama tracks the volatile intersections of a multi-ethnic cast, examining fear and bigotry from multiple perspectives as characters careen in and out of one another’s lives. No one is safe in the battle zones of racial strife. And no one is immune to the simmering rage that sparks violence - and changes lives.
"Crash" is a thought-provoking look at racial stereotypes in America. Written and directed by Paul Haggis, "Crash" is set in Los Angeles, a city in which strangers never come into contact unless they crash into one another - literally.
Featuring an ensemble cast which includes Thandie Newton, Matt Dillon, Sandra Bullock, Ryan Phillippe, Don Cheadle, and Ludacris, "Crash" is an intense drama that leaves audiences with plenty to talk about after the credits roll.
The film depicts several characters living in Los Angeles, California and brings them together through car accidents, shootings, and carjackings. Most of the characters depicted in the film are racially prejudiced in some way and become involved in conflicts which force them to examine their own prejudices. Through these characters' interactions, the film attempts to depict and examine racial tension in America.
You are a TRUE friend
No matter how long
It only matters
That we ARE
This movie, Crash
Which you recommended
For me to watch
I did, as I said I would
I kept my promise
What I already knew
That there is room,
For us all,
To love and improve
In order to love another
You must first love yourself
Be rid of the anger
And the anger will be rid
From within you
This is the message
I send to everyone
Love will conquer all
Let it into your heart
And watch happiness grow
(written April 27, 2007)