SUMMARY: Why I won't watch this dog movie.
It's Christmas, and I'm not really feeling melancholy, but this post turned out that way. Fair warning.
So many wonderful-looking films are coming out today, and quite a few wonderful ones have come out earlier in the year. I love going to the theater to see movies. It's the ambiance, the total immersion in nothing but the film in the darkness of the movie house. It's getting out of my house. It's not having to share my popcorn with the dogs.
I saw Milk--even though I knew the ending--because it reviewed well, it was local history that I lived through, and the topic is so relevant here and now in California waiting and hoping that the state Supreme Court will toss Proposition 8.
I will go see Gran Torino, even though I know it's violent, because Clint Eastwood both acts and directs, he's tremendously talented at both, his violence is always to a purpose, and his films are gripping and leave me thinking.
I will go see Doubt, although it's intense and deals with difficult subjects, because the cast is superb and because it deals with difficult subjects in an apparently interesting way.
I will probably go see Valkyrie, even though the initial ratings aren't good, and even though it's got some violence, because how Hitler got so many people to do so many bad things has always intrigued me, and it would be nice to get a glimpse into the lives or minds of some who didn't let the wool be pulled over their eyes.
I saw Bolt because I love well-done animated family films.
I saw Bolt a second time because it was a well-done animated family film that perfectly captured the personalities of dogs and--duh--I love dogs. Even though the scenes where he's separated from his human were very difficult for me. (Maybe *I'm* the one in my canine family with separation anxiety.)
I did not see Eight Below, even though I had a husky for 16 years and I love dogs and adventure films-- because I had a husky for 16 years and I love dogs. I cannot bear to see dogs in danger; I cannot bear to imagine how confused and disturbed dogs are when humans treat them in ways that dogs can't possibly understand.
And I will not see Marley and Me. Because it's about having a dog in your life, and falling in love with it, and watching it die. I've done that too many times in real life, and now, as part of a larger dog-owning community, I've done it vicariously far too many times, and thank you very much, I have no compulsion at all to relive any of that "for fun."
Love your dogs every day; you never know when there's a tomorrow that they suddenly won't be in despite how good they look today. (Bay Team dogs suddenly gone in 2008: Homer, 2 years old today, gone tomorrow. Tack, 6 today, gone tomorrow. Cammi, 5 today, gone in 3 weeks. Honey, 9 today, gone in 4 weeks. Whoopi, 5 today, gone tomorrow.)
Love your family and friends, too--such a gift when you have them. And such a boon to have when the dogs in your life depart. Hug everyone you love today or as soon as you get a chance.