“The Big Chill”

Dear Erin,

I like the first two charts you posted pictures of. The other two look very much like school, and not as fun. I Googled “kaper chart” after reading your entry, and the Daisy ones are pretty cute – some of them look like flowers, with each of the petals being a kaper. I think it would be fun either to pluck the “petals” off the flower as the chores get done, or else put the petals on so by the end of the day you have completed the flower.


My week’s work was rather less wholesome, I’m afraid. This is the second to last movie in the summer series, so I guess the summer really is almost over. This time it’s The Big Chill. The only association I had with this movie was its soundtrack, which I remember was prominent in our childhood. And it is a very good soundtrack, full of classics from the 60’s. But I found it a little intrusive in the movie itself, which is striving for realism but only hits squarely in the realm of movie “realism.”

By that I mean all the characters are a little too clever, a little too poignant, a little too accomplished and sentimental, and the music loudly underlines whatever thematic point the movie is trying to make at that particular moment, regardless of how realistic the dialogue or interactions have been beforehand. A group of college friends reunites at the funeral of a mutual friend after years apart. They reignite old flames and rehash old conflicts, and by the end of the weekend, they’re promising to keep in touch, sure that these relationships are re-established on a stronger and more lasting footing. I suppose this is the dynamic of the high school reunion – some joy, some sadness, a sizable dose of nostalgia, and unlikely optimism. (I suppose it is here that I should admit that I have yet to go to one of my own high school reunions.)

But it’s also about hippies becoming yuppies. When they’re back together in a group, they act like they’re back in college in the sixties – the music, the long midnight debates, the drugs, the free love – but their lives are in a different place now, and you get the feeling that this long weekend has been more of an interlude than a real turning point. They’ll go back to being a doctor, a lawyer, a stay-at-home mother, an actor, a writer, a groundless intellectual and sometime drug dealer, and an entrepreneur. All they will take from this weekend, probably, are their memories and perhaps some new regrets about what did or didn’t happen.

I have to admit, this one didn’t really speak to me. I’m probably the right age, but I couldn’t identify either with these people’s successes or their problems. Maybe it’s that I haven’t lost a close friend to death; maybe too much has changed between their generation’s experience and mine; maybe it’s just that I have a different perspective on life and death than this movie espouses. Maybe I just can’t help thinking of Glenn Close and Kevin Kline as Mom and Dad’s peers – not mine – and therefore always more adult than I. (Have you ever noticed that? That the people who are older than you seem like they’ve always been older and more sophisticated than you will ever be?)

In two weeks, I’ll be watching the last movie, The Goonies. This one I’ve seen and liked, so it’s less of a gamble than most of these have been, but it’s been awhile. I’m curious to see if things have changed over the years.

Good luck putting together your chore chart for the Munchkin. I’m finding with the Little Mister that routines are very good things.


One thought on ““The Big Chill”

  1. Pingback: Puzzles of All Sorts | crackersisters

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