Sunday, November 13, 2011

No Journey At All

    I watched Father of Invention with my wife this past weekend.  Kevin Spacy plays a businessman/inventor who spends more time with his career than his family, and ultimately loses them both when one of his criminally negligent “fabrications” results in a 10 year jail sentence.  When he gets out of jail, he moves in with his daughter as he tries to get his life back together.

     Other than the fact that a lot of the characters and situation were both shallow and false, one issue that bothered me was the constant advice to his daughter to forgive him. This doesn’t sound bad on the surface, but the movie presented it as, “You need to get over all the years and years of neglect and emotional abuse and just move on now as if nothing happened.”  When his daughter’s roommate needed some advice when she find out her parent’s are divorcing, Spacey’s character told her basically to get over it immediately. 

   I think that’s bad advice. That’s not forgiveness; that’s denial.  Denial about what happened, about what she (and Spacey's daughter) felt, about what the ripple effect had been and would be in life. 

     A life in which we are not supposed to fully embrace the entirety of our experiences in not a good life.  Ultimately, the goal IS to move beyond anger, despair, grief and resentment, but a quick journey is often not a journey at all.

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