This comic was originally intended to be a lot more political. I was going to make references to the United States trying to establish a democracy in the Middle East and bullying the U.K. into supporting the war. But then I thought… that’s giving a little more weight and credence to The Golden Globes and the Hollywood Foreign Press by comparison than I’m intending.
Every year The Golden Globe nominations are announced and every year I have to find a new way to comment about their irrelevance. But you don’t want to overdo it!
Cami and I went to see The Pursuit of Happyness (with a "y" – that’s not a typo, folks!) on Saturday night and I wasn’t very pleased with the movie. It’s a lot more depressing than you think. By now you probably know the story about Chris Gardner’s money problems in the early 80’s as he tried to care for his son while homeless and chasing down a job through an unpaid, competitive internship at Dean Witter. The trailers make the movie look like the most inspirational tale ever told. There’s no doubt what Gardner accomplished was amazing and a true testament to maintaining the beliefe in The American Dream. But if you already know the story – as most people do – the conclusion is vastly underwhelming.
If I had used The Pursuit of Happyness on one of my Spoiler t-shirts, the line would have been something like "Chris gets the job." Because at the end of the movie, that’s pretty much all that happens. Then it ends. Abruptly. My complaint is how lop-sidded the movie is. You get five minutes of happy versus one hour and fifty-five minutes of dissapointment and heartbreak. You’re pulling for Chris. You want him to succeed. But the film (and life) keeps dealing him bad hand after bad hand and after a while, it becomes too much.
I know this is how life will treat you some times. Life will almost never cut you a break and there are far less happy endings than sad ones. But if I’m being lead into the theater under the pretense that a movie is going to give me a two-hour reprieve from those harsh realities, I would hope that it could deliver. Instead, I left the theater almost feeling worse than when I went in. After getting the job, would it have been so bad to see Chris move into a nice appartment or maybe take his son out for dinner? Something more than him clapping his hands on a busy street in slow-mo "I did it!" glory? It’s not enough. That’s what I’m saying.
I wouldn’t go so far as to tell you to avoid the movie. It’s not constructed poorly nor are the performances sub par. Every does a good job. But… I don’t know. For me, it just didn’t click.
Maybe it’s all the running Will Smith seems to be doing in the movie. Every third scene, he’s doing a full sprint either chasing after someone or running away from someone else. This guy does just about as much running per film as Tom Cruise!