Coincidences of Reality, Ability, and Nostalgia Taken to Heart

I have talked a lot on the past about the advent of coincidence.  I like the way events, people, and actions have a tendency to slide together, in my mind like tectonic plates that usually also result in some sort of lasting effect.  If coincidences were a field of study, I am pretty sure I’d be a life-long student of such.  My fascination with films as well helps feed that interest, as viewing the films Boyhood and The Theory of Everything lately fit right alongside my finishing of the book, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by David Eggers.

When I went to view The Theory of Everything, I knew nothing about this film.  Yet, witnessing the amazing hurdles, obstacles, as well as ability to navigate seemingly impossible odds of Stephen Hawking’s life, which I knew almost nothing about, was to put it mildly an inspiration.  Director James Marsh  goes above and beyond what many thought they would have know about Stephen Hawking and lets viewers realize, how precious every moment is of life, and yet, the ability very few individuals have to appreciate every second of what life dishes out, the good, the bad, the awful, the exhilarating.

Then take into consideration the amazing acting of Eddie Redmayne as well as Felicity Jones, and you have to wonder how hard and difficult it was to mirror such a miracle of maneuvering life with so many physical boulders in the path.  And getting it so personal on screen.

Despite the potential for giving up, failure, and gloom, Stephen Hawking’s life shows a parting of the waves of depression, and reveals a land of success, hope, and valuing life in every single aspect of the word.  Those days that I sit back and review the complaints I have about the world around me?  Meaningless and unsubstantiated when you put yourself in the experiences of Stephen Hawking,which is quite impossible yet, this film provides an introspection that will not leave you any time soon.  You find yourself sitting in your seat at the end of the film still taking in the strength of Stephen Hawking’s life, from his relationships to his knowledge, to the decision he had to make before and after his life changing impacts.

s if this film was not enough to emphasize the value and power of life around us and in our minds, I was in for another treat after viewing Richard Linklater’s Boyhood.  Yes, I saw the comments ahead of time, mostly mediocre from viewers that stated it was boring, it was not interesting to see a whole life of a big in front of them, etc..  I thought it ironic that many of the comments came from individuals younger than 18, and thought okay.  As a 42 year old, I connected with poignant moments in my life that did churn back in my mind, as a rest of seeing how the characters within Boyhood tackled what life in general and creating a meaning and purpose amid the churning up that so often occurs.

The peaceful, timid, and truly laying below the surface personality of Ellar Coltrane, as Mason, begins to sink into your very being as the movie progresses, and represents the cool approach he seems to take to all that he witness as he is growing and begins to question life, his existence, and the role among it all.  Lorelei Linklater, as Samantha and who in reality is the director’s daughter, born in San Miguel Allende, Mexico  just is GREAT.  Her reactions to everything, including a brother, family conflicts, and just her movement through life is perfect – not overdramatized and non unrealistic in the least and she is superb.  Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette are perfect through the turmoils that occur in their lives and keep moving forward despite the decisions and indecisions that seem to change everything around them.

I see the aspect of nostalgia interesting, similar to films, life, and just what comes to your doorstep.  Many people are content to allow elements to be perceived simply and have no impact other than basic entertainment.  I get that, I escape to the movie cinema she I just red an escape, a chance to submerge my whole mind into something that is just an escape for me to reorganize and plan for my next move.  However, there is so much to be found in the aspects of life depicted in movies, that can be a catalyst for change, as such can be found in books and the negative, as well as positive elements of life.  There are always the individuals that look at anything that is considered nostalgic and to let it lie and serve as a memory.  Yet, there are others to use this defining moments to define and serve as a course to map out a different future, and a chance to move on and create experiences even more inspirational in their future.  I like that idea, or at least the idea of those individuals, and it seems these will be the movers and shakers that shape life to become more than moving throughout the years, but carving out meaning that strikes to the soul and heart of many more.

Loving life, defining life, embracing challenges, appreciating the aspects of life that fly by and usually can be missed quite easily, and many more themes are captured in these films and brilliantly.  I loved the fact that as I finish David Eggers A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, I felt these same themes being worked through by all involved.  Coincidence?  Truly, but one not to be shrugged off to have a lasting impact on our lives.


About Harry Brake

Employee of Woodbridge High School, Library Media Specialist, Media crazy! :)
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2 Responses to Coincidences of Reality, Ability, and Nostalgia Taken to Heart

  1. skw1234 says:


    I l o v v v e e e your blog so much! Thank you, really….

    When r u going to write a book?

    Sent from my iPad


    • Harry Brake says:

      Wow, thank you so much! I have written a book, I am just embarrassed and lazy right now to edit it, sooooo maybe? Thank you so much for being a part of the blog = success! Thank you thank you thank you!

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