Happy Christmas, everyone! Yesterday I went to the Alamo Drafthouse (which continues to thrill me) to watch Jennifer Lawrence’s newest film Joy with my Mom. If you’ve ever had a dream you should go see this film.
Joy was inspired by Joy Mangano, who invented the Miracle Mop as well as many other household items, and it tells the story of a woman who's practical responsibilities threaten to overshadow her ambitions. David O’Russell is such a creative force. What truly inspires me about O’Russell with both this film and Silver Linings Playbook (my other favorite), is his ability to layer his characters with nuance and rawness while capturing them with a child-like glint. Like sensational rose colored glasses. Joy felt to me like a modern fable of how the Dreamer becomes a Doer and the challenges that come with this revolutionary decision. Joy is such an accessible experience because this is a story that many of us share in common. We all have aspirations to do more with our lives. Dreams that felt so alive as a child until responsibilities like jobs and families and so many other boxes came to the forefront of our lives. And like Joy, many of us will come to a point in our lives, God Willing, where we have to make a decision to jump out there, or remain safely ensconced in anonymous comfort.
What resonates all the more with me is that no matter how many challenges Joy faces (as literally everytime she gains an opportunity, she faces devastating loss or humiliation) she has her moment of processing, and then immediately dusts herself off to find the solution. She does not need a romantic arch, she only needs a strong will, and the 'power' that lay hidden beneath all of her fears. She becomes relentless in the truth that she is the only person in her world, save her grandmother, best friend and ex-husband, who believe in her dream. Joy is a triumphant symbol to begin 2016 with!