Last week I signed up for Netflix, which I have a feeling may be a revolutionary move for me. There are so many movies that I haven’t seen (and I have quite a list of suggestions courtesy of my wonderful friends and readers!) and I am sure I’m going to learn a lot from them.
I just finished watching the movie Amelie for the first time. Even though the movie came out almost seven years ago, I never got around to seeing it. When I was in college, one of my best friends loved the movie and we always planned on watching it together, but for some reason, it just never happened.
Watching Amelie was an interesting experience, I suppose, to put it lightly. I certainly liked it very much, and I had been told (or perhaps warned) that it has rather eccentric characters and a quirky style.
Despite the obvious stark difference between Amelie’s life and my own, throughout the movie I actually started feeling a connection growing between myself and her. I have had these moment before while watching movies, moments that catch me off-guard and I contemplate pausing the movie when my mind starts to wander, these moments where I’m watching a character living in a completely different city with a completely different lifestyle coming from a completely different childhood but I can’t get rid of this pit of my stomach that I am just like her.
Throughout the movie, Amelie struggles to find the courage to approach the person she cares about the most, while casually meddling in the lives of co-workers and complete strangers. I feel like most people are either completely comfortable in approaching people and making friends, they are absolutely terrified about making friends but they’re rather indifferent about people who don’t (to them) matter as much, or they don’t like anyone.
I think I fall in the second category, which may or may not surprise you. I have always, since I was a little girl, had a difficult time making friends. When I was a child I would wait for other children to approach me and invite me to play with them, but I would never ever approach anyone. As I became older, I became more comfortable talking with grown-ups and having conversations with people but I always knew what I was going to say. I think one of the reasons I enjoy making friends with diabetes is because I know how the conversation will go and I’m not as anxious. In the movie, every time I saw Amelie run away from the guy she was falling in love with, I thought about all the times I had done that with people I knew in high school or in college or even now. I thought about how many times I have watched people hanging out or having lunch and wishing I had the nerve to approach them or say something and just turning around and walking away because it was easier.
At the end (I hope you don’t mind me ruining it for you), Amelie is encouraged to take the risk or, as she is warned, her heart will dry up like the skeleton of her elderly neighbor. Taking risks seems to be the theme of my life right now. I know I took a huge risk in coming here, and I sometimes wonder if the risk was worth it.
The actual title of the movie, in French, is “Fabuleux destin d’Amelie Poulain, Le” which mean “The Fabulous Destiny of Audrey Poulain.” I love that title because I feel like all of our lives have this fabulous destiny that we’ll have if we just take the risk to find it.