Last night some girlfriends and I went to go and watch My Sister’s Keeper. It was…. a little disappointing, a little um, trite? And a lot thought provoking. When I got home and Cliff asked how it was I was so full of conflicted emotions and opinions about the movie that I rambled on and on about it and he (quite rightly) thought I was a bit of a nutcase.
Having read the book before hand I was really looking forward to seeing the familial relationships play out on the big screen but so much was glossed over in the movie. The father and the son were total “non events” in the movie but I really connected with them in the book and really would have liked to see more of the arsonist vs fireman dad storyline. I think that so often while on this IF journey we do this too, we forget how this journey effects those who are on the periphery and too often gloss over how they feel, the pain they’re feeling etc. And often it is the male of the species who get’s glossed over. Way too often. I really try HARD not to forget my man in this journey, but often I do, and I hope that I will be better at acknowledging him moving forward.
I thought too that the film makers were not brave enough to show the real grit in the situation the family found themselves in. I get that they wanted to highlight love and family and the wonder of feeling the sun on your face, but I think they did families who are battling cancer a disservice. Cos it must be so freaking hard to go through. Everything I’ve heard about lumbar punches is that they are FREAKING SORE, but when they showed the little girl getting her first one the child did not flinch when the doc shoved the punch into her… I cannot imagine that is realistic. I also kept thinking of Lea and her daughter Bianca and how this journey must have been for them all these years. I don’t know what I’m talking about from experience but I think that the book told it how it was. It showed in everyway that life can be a bitch. You win your medical rights suit and BAM the next day you die in a car crash. Life sucks sometimes. In the most unbearable and unfair ways. And I have to wonder why Hollywood is too scared to acknowledge it.
One scene in the movie REALLY struck a chord with me. The scene where Kate is dying and her family rallies around her. They all eat pizza and cannot face that this young girl is dying in front of their eyes. They offer platitudes, they offer silly advise, they tell her to imagine her cancer cells dying when in fact they can see plainly that the cancer has beaten her. But what really struck me was that the people closest to her, the people that had been fighting alongside this child in the trenches, they kept quiet. The sad knowing looks they gave each other. The disparaging smiles they offer to the ones dispensing advise, cos they know it’s not that easy. It’s funny cos so often we find ourselves at the end of the same situation. Those who don’t know what to say when faced with your trial in life so they offer platitudes. Those that get uncomfortable when faced with your trial (whatever it may be) that they gloss over it and pretend that the reality is not real.
On the other hand I did like that the film makers honed in on the fact that life can be good too even in the midst of your trial. That happiness can be found in the little things, the simple joys, the love.
I really was not expecting such a reaction to this movie, cos the book rocked me to the core and I really thought I knew what was going to happen. But I am glad I watched it.
What did you guys think about this movie? I’d be intersted to hear your thoughts.