Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Everyone Loves ET . . . Eventually


Okay, he's cute!

The family was at the movies.
Again.
We had popcorn and treats.
Soft drinks.
And the quickest route to the bathroom mapped into our heads.
We were ready.
Erik was four.
A little more than eager.
The theatre darkened.
Slowly.
Expectation grew.
They don't do this any more, but in times past, every step to the opening of a movie served to heighten the anticipation to a fever pitch.
Slowly lowered lights.
Projector springing to life.
Train of white light beamed on the still-closed curtains.
Said curtains slowly drawing back.
Pictures suddenly appearing.
Sound.
It was inspired.
Everyone in the theatre was transfixed.
Hands which only recently had been scrabbling (Grandpa's word) through the popcorn hung suspended, unmoving.
The audience waited, barely breathing, for the first signs of Movie.
And then it finally came, restoring breath and life to those watching.
And they were truly prepared to be entertained. Even bewitched.
Our movie that night was ET. The story about the little Extra Terrestrial.
It began
Cute little kids and family interaction.
ET was introduced.
Erik crawled into my lap and announced in what he fondly believed was a whisper, “I don't like him. He's scary!”
Not scary enough that he wanted to leave, however.
He watched as the children in the movie befriended the helpless, stranded little alien.
Adopted him.
Loved him.
(Spoiler alert . . .)
He cried when ET 'died'.
And cried, again, when he came back to life.
At the end of the movie, he sighed happily and followed the rest of us out of the theatre.
On the way home, as usual, we talked about the film and Erik posed the question, “Why was ET so much cuter at the end of the movie than at the beginning?”
I stared at him. “He was just the same, sweetie.”
“No. He was cuter at the end.”
We thought about it.
How could something that really never changed in looks get 'better' looking?
And then it hit me.
“Because, at the end, you loved him, sweetie.”
“Oh. Right.”
And it was true.
The ugly little alien remained ugly until we got to know him.
Loved him.
And then we saw his beauty.
Truth comes best from a four-year-old.

6 comments:

  1. ET was the first movie I saw in the theater. I remember crying.

    ReplyDelete
  2. It was one of the few movies I got to see at the theater when I was a kid!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Watched this with my kidlets a few months ago ... they were sobbing and laughing and ...

    Great post to describe why the movie was so perfect!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love this analogy so much. I haven't really thought of it that way, but it is so true. It doesn't really matter what something or someone looks like. If we love it/him/her, it/he/she is beautiful to us. Thank you for sharing this. This may come in handy for one of my Sunday School lessons or a FHE in the near future! :) You are so wise.

    ReplyDelete
  5. We watched this in the spring with our crew.
    I LOVE that you posted about this.
    Our 9 year old son...sobbed...can I just say SOBBED during this movie...something I have never ever seen before, except for when our daughter died.
    Again...I love that you posted about this movie.
    Once again--love reading your thoughts/experiences.

    Side note--I recently commented that you should write a book and then happened to notice later that you have :) Would love to read it...

    Thanks for sharing...
    ~Kara @ The Chuppies/NOBH

    ReplyDelete

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