LA LA LAND of Dreams

In my experience, watching award-winning films is a mixed bag. Some are masterpieces in every way and others leave a person shaking their head (UNFORGIVEN). So I had low expectations when I viewed LA LA LAND.

This is not a review of the movie. It’s a reflection of underlying themes in any work of art.

Appreciation of art is utterly subjective. I will throw my hands up at cubist paintings while another person is deeply moved. I’ll see paint splatters and psych evaluation ink dot images in some impressionistic works while others can easily envision what the artist intended.

So if I’ve already offended you because you loved UNFORGIVEN or hated AMADEUS (an old Academy winner that I especially enjoyed), I apologize. Not for my opinion but that you found it offensive because it was not offered up for that purpose.

The Story

This is a story about a girl who wants to be an actress and a boy who is an accomplished musician but has bottomed-out while seeking his dream (of owning a jazz club).

Girl meets boy when she hears him playing the piano at a restaurant when she’s walking by. (I loved that the tune of that song underwrote most of the music for the score. In my opinion, this is composition at its finest.) He’s just been fired for not sticking to the manager’s set list, so he blows by her with hardly a glance.

Later they meet up at a party and it’s the “boy and girl despise each other when they meet” trope in action. Neither of them are looking for love or a relationship and that’s when it blindsides you.

They support each other’s art, but they come to a crossroads where the choice seems to be “career/dream” or “relationship.” He has chosen a career and it isn’t fulfilling him, and her dream lets her down. They part with the assurance “I’ll always love you.”

Five years later, a “chance” meeting sends them spiraling down the path of  “what if.” And while it appears they have both “arrived” at their dream, neither of them appears happy.

My Takeaway

Dreams can only take you so far.

If you’ve followed me long, you know I’m a middle-aged woman who has only been pursuing her dreams for seven years, and single-mindedly for four years. I am a proponent for never giving up on dreams.

However, I wouldn’t give up my family or my husband if it meant that I had every dream I’ve imagined (best sellers, movie adaptations, million-dollar contracts, etc.)

To me, that is what happened in the movie. Especially for Sebastian. Mia moved on and found another man, had a daughter, although her reaction when she heard him play tells me it wasn’t all golden for her either.

In the “what if” scenario, both of them ended up in the same place–dreams fulfilled–but they were together.

The theme here was about choices and how one can alter everything–for better or worse.

A dream might have a price, but some prices are too high to pay. Each person must decide what the “upper limit” will be for them. Sadly, we might not realize how much we’ve lost until it’s too late to recover it.

A feeling of melancholy accompanied the end of this film. The dreams didn’t seem to bring as much joy to Mia and Seb as their time together. It was a reminder to count the cost, appreciate what you have and live each moment.

Have you seen LA LA LAND? What theme stood out to you? What emotion did the film leave with you?

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Happy 27 Years of Marriage

You guessed it. Today is my 27th wedding anniversary.

And they said it would never last? Little did they know I have more sticking power than a starving leech (nice visual, right?).

How about a little walk down memory lane?

Once upon a time, a sophomore dated a senior. Later, she befriended with that guy’s best friend. They went on a few dates. He went away to college. She went into the army.

Regardless of the separation, they decided they loved each other and wanted to spend eternity together.

So, they got married.

May 27, 1988 - My sister, me, my husband, and his brother
May 27, 1988 – My sister, me, my husband, and his brother

They bought a house, had two kids and life got crazy. After a few rough years, they decided to renew their marriage vows. They wouldn’t go the way of so many; they would stick it out.

Forever. Together.

Renewing our vows - May 2001
Renewing our vows – May 2001

More time passed. Their little boys grew and grew until they became young men.

Mr. and Mrs. felt extreme pride in the successes of their sons. Life was good.

Oldest Graduates high school - June 2009
Oldest Graduates high school – June 2009

 

 

 

Happy Silver Anniversary - May 27, 2013
Happy Silver Anniversary – May 27, 2013

Boys went to college. So did the Mrs. It was time to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a writer.

A month before she finished college, the couple celebrated 25 years of marriage. Sorry there aren’t many pictures of the occasion. The usual photographer needed to be present in FRONT of the camera. The back-up cameraman was too fast for the old Nikon.

 

 

 

 

Now they live in a wonderful single-level home, making preparations to move to the next phase of life: grand-parenting.

Looks like a Happily Ever After ending to me!
Looks like a Happily Ever After ending to me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Having fun in Cabo, Mexico - December 2014
Having fun in Cabo, Mexico – December 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And that’s what happily married for more than a quarter-century looks like.