An Incredible Lesson, By Elisha Cheeseman

Today marks the first anniversary of my Cinema Toast Blog! To celebrate, I’m bringing you a guest blog from a dear writer friend, Elisha Cheeseman. Elisha is published in the new Flash Tales 2: A Collection of Flash Fiction. She is a great writer and animal advocate. Please make her welcome!

 

Movies. As a kid, I loved them. Growing up poor, going to see one was a real treat that I never took for granted. Maybe that is why, when I watch movies now; I try to find how it relates to life.  One of my favorites is The Incredibles. Although it is an animated movie made for families, there are still profound lessons entwined within the story.

The Incredibles focuses on the life of one well-known superhero, Mr. Incredible better known by Robert Parr. He and his family; wife Helen, daughter Violet and son Dash, are forced to fit into a society that they feel wants them to be normal. Robert takes a day job working in insurance, often bending the rules to genuinely help the customers. This honesty does not sit well with his boss, Mr. Huph, who would rather look out for the stockholders’ interests. Robert also secretly listens to police scanners to do what he truly wants to do in life: be a superhero.

This gets him in trouble with his wife Helen because she feels that he is so focused on bringing back the past, he is missing out on the present. There is also a twist as the movie opened up with interviews with Robert and Helen’s alter egos, Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl. The reporter asks if they’ve thought about settling down. Robert says he would love to raise a family but Helen felt that she was “at the top of her game” as Elastigirl and didn’t want to leave the job of “saving the world to the men.”  It was Helen who adjusted better to raising a family and Robert who still wanted to relive the old days.

Robert, Helen and their kids struggle when they are forced to fit in. When they allow themselves to be superheroes, they are a wonderful team. Their powers are a gift, not a burden to hide. While fighting evil, Robert also discovers that even someone with super strength can feel that they are not strong enough to protect their loved ones.

How does a movie like The Incredibles apply to real life? I feel that this movie speaks to anyone who carries a dream while dealing with stresses of everyday life—bills to pay, jobs, and errands. The day job we have may not be ideal, but if we make time for what makes us happy, then it is worth it. If we work hard in what we do for others, then why not put as much into ourselves. Aren’t we worth the effort?

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