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Sunday, May 7, 2017

Reel Life: What type of movie is your life?

As I mentioned in a previous post, Reel Life: Scenes from life's movie, sometimes I feel like life is a movie.  Specifically, I meant it is typically like a live showing of a movie at the theaters, where it keeps rolling and you only see the past in flashbacks (or prior frames).  Anyway, it occurred to me, if life is a movie, what type of movie is it?

There are many different genres of movies, just like there are many different types of people or personalities.   Just like a comedy usually has some serious moments, dramas have some lighter or comic moments, kids movies usually give a nod to grownups and such, our lives typically have more than one type of movie associated with it.  For example, even people whose life is built on created drama, have time of true drama or tragedy in their lives. That being said, let's stereotype a little.  

  • Biography - This type of movie represents those who are truth seekers.  It represents those who like see and say things straight.  Just like biographical movies, sometimes this type of person can be fascinating and refreshing, but sometimes can be 'too candid' and a killjoy.  After all, biographies don't just tell the good and interesting side of lives, but they also tell the not so good either. 
  • Comedy - The type of movie represents those who don't necessarily take life too seriously or too straight--whether it is due to a lightness of being or a darker more cynical perspective.
    • Laugh out loud comedy - This type of movie represents those who live life jovially.  While they have their moments, their moments don't keep them down for too long.  They try to look at the glass half full and they definitely try to find something to smile about.
    • Dark comedy - This type sees often deeper darker motives behind what is at play in life and society.  But instead of getting all would up about it, they sarcastically reflect on what they see.
    • Parody - They see life as a farce which they are privileged (or cursed) to see. As such, they take little at face value and tend to mock.  Dark comedy & parody have similar elements to them, but a dark comedy is still somewhat serious.
  • Science fiction - They are very creative and adventurous, but sometimes they are considered a little bit nerdy.  They tend to have something to believe in, even if it is not what everyone else does.
  • Western/war movie - People who these types of movies represent are very serious, no-nonsense types.  Like those in a biography, they tend to speak their mind.  Typically they don't care what other's think, but they live by their own code for justice and survival. 
  • Family movie  - These people live lives that would be labeled straight-laced or wholesome.  They try to speak, behave and live a clean, if not healthy life.  They may seem boring to some, but they are there to remind us of what is proper.
  • Musical - These people are the type who like to live large OR "put on a show".
    • Larger than life musical - These people like to live large, live loud and live flamboyant.  For them it is all about spectacle and the attention.  They just like the high or feeling of living big.  Really, it is a show they are putting on for their own entertainment.  The spectacle of their show often tends to make them fun to be around. 
    • Production value musical -These people live their life as a "show" they are putting on for themselves or others.   In their own personal show, they will do things to convince themselves they are "proper" thinking or behaving.  In other words, they live as they believe they should, rather than how they actually feel.  When they put on a 'performance' for others, they are trying to convince others of their inherent "betterness".  In a way, their actions or behavior has the feel of virtue signaling.
  • Drama - These people tend to live a life of excitement, adventure or trouble.  Sometimes, it is truly that way and sometimes it is overwrought.
    • A theatrical movie drama - They seen to get in and out of troubled circumstance and relationships.  Maybe it is to seek that elusive feeling of happiness and maybe it is just what they are comfortable with.
    • A "made for TV" movie drama - Typically their life has a feeling of being dull about it.  So, they feel the need to "create drama".  Usually, the drama has a feeling of being forced and avoidable, but it is their way of feeling relevant (at least to themselves).  Typically, others see through it, but sometimes when they run into someone in a similar circumstance, they have an audience for their "drama".
  • Tragedy - People with this type of life seem to have bad things happen to them or to those around them.  Really, I think you could say people who live a life of tragedy in a way are living a life of extreme drama.  People who live this life, if they are able to see around the destruction and sadness, can find a way to turn their life into a different movie, perhaps a biography.

Typically in life, we are given a script that we are expected to follow in our formative years.  That is the type of movie we are expected to live.  Sometimes, we are able to break away from that script at an early age and sometimes we never truly do break free from the script.  However, especially as we get older, we tend to have a greater ability to change the script or change "movie" we are living.   That being said, I do believe that although we have free will, it does seem like some people seem to be destined to follow a preordained script.  That may be true or it may just be a matter of how their 'movie' turned out.  That is to say, they lived a different script, but some event so altered their lives, they turned out to be a completely different person.  For example, Oprah Winfrey was born to a single mom, grew up in poverty, faced sexual abuse and was a teenage mom for a short period of time (to an infant son who died shortly after birth).  One could describe her early life's movie as a "tragedy".  But, due to her faith and her persistence, her life movie changes from a tragedy to a biography.  Hers is just one of many.

Anyway, what type of movie is your life or is it a combination of movie types?  Do you feel like your life's movie type has changed over time or due to events?  Just some questions to ponder as we live life's movie.

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