We’ve been married for 10 years and I’ve always known my husband wasn’t a very emotional kinda guy. He isn’t easily moved by things on a screen. When a movie has managed to give him a case of “the feels” his face changes, his nostrils flare and his jaw tightens. That’s how I know he’s been touched by something; he looks angry about it. Yesterday we happened upon a discussion that made me see him not just as unsentimental but damaged. He doesn’t like Rudy.
He isn’t a fan of Notre Dame, his humming along with the fight song as it chimed from the church bells on Sunday was the knee jerk reaction of a college football junkie, but to enjoy Rudy you only need to be a fan of the human spirit. His distaste for Rudy draws this into question.
He doesn’t hold just a “Meh, Rudy doesn’t do it for me” neutral opinion of the film but a repugnant one. In fairness he often plays devils advocate and takes things to an extreme just to rouse me. Well, he did. The famous scene that I see as a team acknowledging and participating in the underdogs dream of his family seeing him play on the field and hoisting him up in solidarity and celebration of this realized dream my dear husband equated with “cushy, everyone gets a participation ribbon crap”. When I made a plea for the perseverance through adversity he quipped that Rudy persevered in having everyone feel sorry for him. The fact that Rudy was disheartened and quit but ultimately returned to the team did not ring of a renewed spirit or second chances. Stephen offered no Mulligan to poor Rudy. His summation of Rudy: He was a lousy football player, he stayed a lousy football player, they threw him a bone in the last play of the game and then everyone celebrated a lousy football player.
I’ve been thawing his 30 pound frozen pork chop of a heart for 10 years now. Braveheart and the Jimmy Valvano speech have been a few microwave minutes on defrost but for the most part I’ve let it sit on the counter gradually softening at room temperature. Now, I feel challenged. To quote the movie “After years of religious study I’ve learned two things; there’s a God and I’m not him” but like Rudy I won’t give up on my dream. A movie marathon is in order. Help, please? What movies could move this statue to tears?