It’s movie time again in the good ole summer time…Is this why are Grandkids so valuable?
This Chapter may not be a long chat, but it is a significant one from my perspective.
Yesterday I went to see my third Avengers movie. At least I think it is my third, and I believe it is an Avengers movie (but I don’t know if there is an apostrophe or not and if so where it is to be placed!!). It was supposed to be a rainy day and since my Arizona grandsons always go to a movie with me during each visit (either there or here) we decided to walk to the theatre to view the new film Spiderman: From Far Away.
Now there are a couple of off-line comments I need to make before getting to the heart of the story. Firstly, I had an SUV sitting in the garage that would have carried us but I left that for my daughter and son-in-law (even though there was another car there as well that would have carried two people). Instead, for the second day in a row I chose to walk down to the village centre: a return voyage of about sixteen kilometres (not bad until one realizes that the difference in elevation is about 100 metres AND if one walks down, the return journey has to be up!!). I guess it is a good workout (even though I had also taken these same young talented hockey-playing teenagers to the gym at 4:55 a.m.). AND, because we thought it was to rain in the afternoon we carried two umbrellas. Instead the sun came out and the walk home was in Okanagan heat… but I digress…
Back to the movie. This is a good film. I had seen one of the early versions of Spiderman and was okay with it as an afternoon option on a hot AZ day; but this one is actually worth going to no matter what the day or evening is like (the earlier ones the boys told me were part of a SONY series and are considered rather second grade so I should put them out of my mind — explains why I never went back to see the follow-up sequels). Now in this new version/edition there is a lot of destruction but what’s the point of being able to cast webs to save falling buildings if the buildings aren’t being knocked over? And within the overall narrative, there is a story with some teenage love interests (this Spidee-guy is perhaps sixteen, so try to remember your own high school days and then don’t forget that nowadays no one gets married in their teens or even quits school at sixteen to get a real job). The plot is convoluted at times, but in a good way AND you have to stay right through the closing credits in order to really understand where the story fits into the larger saga narrative. I enjoyed it and so did the three grandsons…
But that is all I’m going to say directly about the show – go see it yourself, preferably with Grandkids or with someone who enjoys a good movie with lots of twists and contains good screen-writing and acting (and some pretty amazing technics). What intrigued me most was the walk home listening to the three kids analyse this film not only within itself, but within the context of all the other Avengers movies. It was then I began to realize that MARVEL is something I should have been holding shares in. This is a juggernaut…makes Star Wars somewhat passé. Turns out I have been to two other ones with these same cine-analysts including one with a really cool raccoon in it (I think it is called Guardians of the Galaxies which I only went to as it was the selected film on a much earlier trip to AZ and ended up really liking it). But as I listened I came to the conclusion I should have gone to more so I could have at least tried to get into the conversation. I suppose though that I really did need to just listen while concentrating on trying to put one foot ahead of the other and at a pace that if I could maintain on a daily basis would turn me back at least twenty years in terms of my physical fitness (but I am digressing again…).
However, something else happened while I listened to all the insights, critiques, analyses and editorializing – I remembered an old friend, Roger, who some thirty plus years ago did a big road trip from Saskatchewan to New York with his son to take him to the offices of the comic book maker MARVEL. In the lead-up to the trip he would regale me with the incredible brilliance of the people behind this corporation’s ability to produce smart, interesting and in many ways amazing futuristic stories about life as it may eventually unfold in our worlds. Rog did say once that he thought these characters would make great movie heroes if only technology would grow to the point that the comics could come to life. Sadly Roger has passed away or I know he would have been at this opening day himself.
As for me, I’m glad that my Grandsons and I have this tradition of going to a movie each trip. I’ve seen some films I never would have gone to. More importantly I now have a sense of what this entire Avenger story is all about and why it can produce such interesting movies. I still don’t fully understand it all, and there are some characters that I can’t remember their names or why they are important. But it sure was enjoyable yesterday – watching a good movie and then listening to a tri-partite analysis for forty minutes as we climbed the long walk home.
These analysts enter their senior year of high school in another month or two, They have sufficient mental firepower that they will go on to some aspect of post-secondary education. They might even go to different schools. So the possibility looms that our collective movie-going days will end in the coming months. If that happens, I’m sure that each one will still be up for taking their Grandpa to a movie by themselves, no matter where they are living. And I will go, because I will not only learn more about today’s youth but I am likely to find myself enjoying a cinematic experience that otherwise would have passed me by.
The kids are alright. And in my case, their movies are too.