Thursday, December 8, 2011

Tears of Awe

Mama’s Losin’ It
2.) What is it about that movie that makes you cry every time?

I need to first disclose that I'm the kind of person that can cry at a commercial. I cry during every episode of Parenthood I cried every time I saw Les Miz (all 8 times). In other words, it doesn't take much to make me cry.

So it shouldn't come as too great a shock that I can't get through Spencer Tracy's final speech in Guess Who's Coming to Dinner? without tears.

It's the combination of things. It's the incomprehension (to me) that a union between a black man and white woman could be illegal in some places, or questioned at all. It's the knowledge that Tracy died shortly therafter. It's the look that he gives Katharine Hepburn where the love between them is palpable and true and pure. It's when his own voice breaks that I crumble.

I have seen this movie hundreds of times, and I'm not exaggerating. You simply cannot find better actors than Sidney Poitier, Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, and every single time I watch it (every.single.time), I find a moment in one of their performances that I hadn't previously noticed. I would rather spend hours of my life watching this and experiencing greatness than mediocre movies that don't have the heart, depth, and talent that this one movie holds.

I haven't seen it in a few years because it got to the point where I was noticing flaws in the perfection. I'd gotten too close to it so I'm taking a break. Still, when I come back to it, I know I will cry once again when Tracy says, "that's everything." He's right. This movie is everything I love about movies, about the cinema's ability to humanize larger issues, and the right director, screenplay and actors making something beautiful and unquestionably worthy of a few tears.

1 comment:

Sarah Auerswald said...

OMG I cry at commercials, too. Sappy ones! It's embarrassing, but I can't help it!