Tuesday, February 3, 2009
May the Force Be With You
Star Wars came out in 1978? I was born in '71, I can remember my mom jimmy-rigging the speaker at the drive-in movies so that Bryan and I could hear it as well as watch it. Drive In Movie Theaters--remember those? My parents would back into a spot in our pick-up truck, bring fried chicken from a bucket, and load us up on Milk Duds. They made us wear our jammies. I remember my brother being embarrassed to be out in public in his pajamas--I think he even refused to use the toilet because it meant walking there in them. As I am remembering, I think we were in a tiny green Datsun B210 for our Star Wars adventure. We were both so excited. EVERYONE had seen it--we wanted to as well. Remember what that feels like?
I remember thinking that the light sabers were amazing--my mind couldn't wrap around the idea of a sword made of colored light. A child's view! Bryan and I would pretend we had our own. Bryan was Luke, I was Darth. His favorite character was Chew-Bacca. He liked the sound effects the furry giant made. Star Wars was ahead of its time--the "special" effects were mind-bending to 7 and 8 year olds! We had many hours of fun pretending we were Jedi Knights and Storm Troopers. We didn't understand the bigger themes of good versus evil, right versus wrong, good guys beating bad guys. We just thought the spaceships were awesome and modern. We were terrified of Darth and his Death Star.
Our family is watching the early Star Wars movies for the first time. We just finished the one I watched in 1978. (Some of) My kids are 7 and 8. Bryan wanted to be a part of this childhood "rite of passage" but I put it off. I have stop putting things off. Yesterday, my kids and I popped popcorn in the middle of our school day, cuddled up during Peter's nap and watched a movie that my brother and I were enamored with and awed by when we were their age. It was so good to see this film (an icon from our childhood) from my children's point of view--just little kids enjoying an action-packed fantasy movie. They were entertained. No mining for deep meaning. No teachable moments explored. Nothing serious (or real for that matter). It was just fun. I laughed at the low-tech effects and silly plot. But they just enjoyed. I felt like I was a kid again, seeing it for the first time. This time, without Bryan. Oh to be 7 again!
Posted by Reilly Fitzpatrick at 9:25 PM