Archive for the ‘Movies’ Category

Eat, Pray, Love, Love, Love

Last night I saw the movie Eat, Pray, Love, based on the Elizabeth Gilbert book.  At first, this had been a film that was a definite ‘yes’ on my list of films “to see”, and then I read some pretty relevant criticisms of the film and thought, maybe not.

When I was living in Sweden and going through a deep personal crisis full of isolation, depression, over-eating and the start of a yoga practice, my best friend mailed me this book.  It was one of the best gifts I’ve ever received because it was so timely and, being rather unaware of the depths of my state, it was a very intuitive gift from her.  I read it, bead-by-bead, mostly in the bathroom (where much of my breakdown took place), and it soothed my stress knowing that I was not the only woman with many of these feelings. It also brought laughter and a sense of lightness to a very dark time.

The criticisms of the movie were that it depicted a flimsy American woman, overly-dramatic about her divorce, gallivanting freely around Italy, India, and Indonesia as though that is what these countries are set-up for – to accommodate needy, empty Americans searching for something outside of themselves.  When I read the critiques I imagined how that was so, and even after seeing the movie, the criticisms are still relevant.  Nonetheless, it is a movie, entertainment, and for that purpose, I loved it.

The Italy scenes made my heart thump so loud in my chest, giving my whole body goosebumps for longer than any movie has.  It brought back an adoration of the culture, and a sense of awe at the ancient infrastructure that I first felt on my own European escape.  Her desire to know herself and her confession of an incapacity to listen put me right back in my Swedish apartment.  I laughed and cried, and thought “Crazy, this is so me!”.  How many other woman were thinking this too?  It doesn’t matter, the more the merrier.  (Although I am very curious so please let me know if you also share a deep similarity with this character).  Even with my small taste of Ashram life I could see a few cultural errors, but her experience with meditating would ring true to anyone who attempts a regular meditation practice.

In the end, it was a light-hearted romantic comedy just like 50 First Dates, My Best Friend’s Wedding etc.  A distinction that it deserves is that it is particularly relevant to many woman at this moment of social evolution where a greater consciousness is emerging.  That is evident in the literary field (ie. The Secret being a top seller), the growing yoga/meditation/alternative healing industry, and a society expressing a need for more meaning in their lives.  I’d be so happy if everyone were able to adopt this mantra and just eat, pray and love.  What do you think about the book, the movie or my review?

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