Posts tagged movie recommenations

HOMELESS TO HAVARD: the Liz Murray story

Liz at 15: troubled by a dysfunctional family and homeless.
Welcome to this read.
Liz preferred to go by the name Liz or Lizzie and that’s because ‘Elizabeth’, was what her mum called her when she was slipping into crazy.
She loved her family so much that she baby-sat her whole family especially her mum. In between living in a dingy apartment where the bath tub wouldn’t drain so she she’d shower ontop of an upturned bucket to escape the dirty water, and trying to get whats left of the money her mum hadn’t used for drugs to buy food, she didnt think of school. Liz hated school anyway. She turned up at the end of the term just to write her exams. She dropped out at grade 8. She was the absolute outcast in school. She smelled, she itched.

“my house wasn’t a place you could come out of and be normal”

Its heartbreaking to watch a child cling hopelessly to a drug addict. An addict who would always go back to the same things. Her mum always got taken to a mental institution for her schizophrenia, then released back.
Liz shoplifted a bit, ate in dumpsters, hung out in alleys, and slept in underground train stations.
She nursed the hope that everything would turn out right once again if she just continued to help her mother. When Liz’s plan didn’t work, she got a reality slap in the face.
Liz became her own knight.
She worked hard to get back in school. She studied maniacally and completed four years of high school in two (she didn’t want to end high school at 21 and she’d lost some years already).
She worked hard for an essay scholarship and got it. At the award of her New York Times scholarship, a journalist asked:
Journalist: “Liz, Liz, how did you do this?”
Liz: ” how could I not do it? My parents showed me what the alternative was”.

“I feel I got lucky because any sense of security was pulled out from under me, so I was forced to look forward. I didn’t have a choice so I got to the point where I just thought I had to work as hard as possible and see what happens.”

Likes
I really like the narration Liz did in the background. It worked well with the whole narrative, it gave it solidity and perspective. Her voice held a certain appeal too.
I really like how convincing the acting was. They each acted their part. Sister was detached; Mother was hopelessly addicted and sick; Father was intelligent yet crazily absent in a world of his own, lacked social skills and consumed by AIDS; Friend had lost all hope; and Liz, Liz was passive about her life in a big world until she changed her own story.
Dislikes
We don’t get enough perspective on her elder sister.
Excerpts

“the world moves and in just a sec, it can all happen without you. Situations are not conducive to what you want for yourself, someone else’s need, someone else’s plate is going to be stronger than yours is. Then, people just get frustrated by how harsh life can be and so they spend their life dwelling on that frustration, calling it anger, keeping their eyes shut to the wholeness of the situation and to all the little tiny things that have come together to make it what it is”

The place of family:
I think the best part for me was the relentless optimist and softie she was for her family.
Journalist: “Is there anything else you’ll like to tell us?”
Liz: “I loved my mother, so much. She was a drug addict, an alcoholic, legally blind and schizophrenic but I never forgot that she did love me even though she did all the time, all the time, all..all the time”
Journalist: “Is there anything you’ll change if you were able?”
Liz: “Yeah, I’ll give it back, all of it, if I could have my family back.”
About her mother:

It wasn’t like she was running off being a good mother to anyone else. She just didn’t have anymore to give”

Production:
Original release date: April 7 2003.
Its an american TV film directed by Peter Levin. Written by Ronnie Kern. Original language: English. Movie length: 1 hr 27 minutes. Thora Birch played the part of Liz Murray.
The movie has been nominated for many awards. It won the best edited miniseries or movie for commercial use -Anita brandt -buryoyne.
Apparently in 2018, another boy goes from homeless to havard: Richard Jenkins by name.
Who should watch this movie? Everyone! For an appreciation of the privilege you have and not to take your security of a decent life lightly. Remember:

“I feel I got lucky because any sense of security was pulled out from under me, so I was forced to look forward. I didn’t have a choice so I got to the point where I just thought I had to work as hard as possible and see what happens.”

P.P.S: Because I’m so hooked on this Liz Murray’s story, I wholly encourage you to read her interview done by BBC.
Because this story is incomplete without the BBC interview version, I insist you read it.
With abundant love,

Debby.

Hacksaw Ridge — Movie Recommendation


I’ve struggled with how exactly I want to go about writing this post. Unlike Captive, I can’t summarize it, I’ve tried, it gets too long and my account I think, is too underwhelming, but I’ll try.
The title is Hacksaw ridge and it appears boring at the start. I could’ve been discouraged at how silly the star actor was when he first fell in love but I persevered.
Since I persevered and learnt from it, let me attempt a recap while encouraging you to see it. Or atleast learn from it too.
This story is really just a story of commitment. And of bravery.
When you make a commitment, stick to it. Believe in it and wait by it even when you’re the only one doing so.
Would you believe if I told you Desmond Doss was the only man to go into world war II (and one of the fiercest war spots for that matter) without bearing a single arm or firing one, and yet he was the one who received the highest rank after the war. Would you believe me?
Desmond who valued his faith so much and went into the battle bearing his bible and no guns*. He was no stranger to rejection.
The war was on and America needed more young men to enlist to fight. Desmond did. At the training facility, he was repeatedly ridiculed, scorned and ostracized for preparing to go into battle without touching a gun. He insisted that he enlisted to be a medic because he wanted to help his country but he had no intention of ever taking a life, war or not.
For this reason, the commander framed him for disobeying an order and he faced the military tribunal at the risk of really being sent to prison if found guilty.

His courage to serve and not give up was inspiring. He knew what he was there for and he didn’t mind missing his wedding just for that! (Emphasis is mine because it must be emphasized.)
He believed the war was justified but that killing wrong.
When asked:

But why is it so important to you to go into battle when you won’t touch a rifle?

He said:

But when the Japanese attacked Pearl Habour, I took it personally. Everyone I knew was on fire to join up including me. two men from my hometown, declared fire unfit, they killed themselves because they couldn’t serve. I had a job and a defence plan, I could have taken it but that ain’t right. It isn’t right that other men should fight and die, that I would just be sitting at home safe. I need to serve. I had the energy and the passion to serve as a medic – right in the middle with the other guys, no less danger just while everybody else is taking life, I’m gonna be saving it. With the world so set on tearing itself apart, don’t seem like such a bad thing to me to want to put a little of it back together”

Located ontop of a 400 foot cliff with the Japanese heavy weaponry, war ship range and brutal soldiers, was Hacksaw Ridge on the island of Okinawa. That was the location of a near-impossible mission during the second world war.

On site, the battle was as fierce as expected and death was hosting the party. Desmond Doss got to work in the midst of the chaos; saving the wounded by first aid treatment and getting them back to safety. He didn’t give up on anyone no matter how badly injured they were. He kept this up for the period they warred.


On one of those days, it was a fierce battle and the soldiers, it appeared, fought a loosing war. The battalion was commanded to retreat. And while everyone did that, Desmond couldn’t. He knew he heard his GOD calling to him in the voices of the wounded and dying. [It reminds me of that line in the hymn “where duty calls or danger, be never wanting there”**]

Desmond Doss got to work pulling the fallen soldiers from the battleground even though he had no one to support him. That day, the Japanese came down from the other end where they camped and upturned the rubble looking to ‘finish’ anyone that wasn’t already dead. Inspite of his close shave with death, being the only uninjured American soldier on ground, he escaped being seen and kept on dragging his injured and fallen soldiers to safety all through the night and all alone. His hands bled from pulling on the rope he used to let them down the cliff, but he kept on. His strength failed but he kept on.
And while he did that crazy work, he kept muttering “please help me get one more. Lord, one more” On and on he continued until his soldiers discovered wounded soldiers from America who were being let down mysteriously. They were able to come back for him in the morning.
That night, he had singlehandedly in the face of fire saved 75 dying men and given them hope by using a rope to let them down the cliff. Desmond did this despite being about the smallest in size to them all. That night, he had given hope to his commander and commrades who had fallen (legs blasted, gunshot wounds etc) and who thought they would writhe in pain till they eventualy die (either from the brutal Japanese or the pain). Desmond Doss had given hope to those whose families were waiting for them back in America. He was shaken but he made it back fine.
He became the only inspiration for which these other soldiers would agree to go to the battle front the next day. They knew they wouldn’t just be casualties left to die, they would matter in the scheme of things.
Again, Desmond rescued them as they fell. And finally, he courageously gave up himself to keep the people out of terrible harm’s way in an act of kicking two greenades away from his team. He got injured; but the deed was already done – the Japanese were already defeated. What few was left of them surrendered.
Desmond Doss was the hope giver, the life saver. The bible-but-no-arms bearing soldier who said “With the world so set on tearing itself apart, don’t seem like such a bad thing to me to want to put a little of it back together” and he did just that.
He was the first to receive America’s highest medal of honour for service above and beyond the call of duty.
The movie was directed by Mel Gibson. Written by Andrew Knight and Robert Schenkkan. Running time: 139 Minutes
The movie has this website.
P.S: In case you’re still unsure, it’s a true life story!
* His refusal to bear arms at all during a war wasn’t because he condemned other Christians who did so. It was borne out of a pledge he made to God in his teenage years after two close shaves with almost killing people.
** if you’re not used to KJV English style, “be never wanting there” means you should volunteer to help in time of need. We shouldn’t be in need of help and you’re wanting (not available).

I hope you’ve been inspired.
What do you think? Have you seen this movie? Are you inspired to do so?
Love light, and courage

Debby.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela

I appreciate that with my movie recommendations, I don’t have rules as I do for my book reviews. So prepare to read any and everything😊. (Long post alert).
After viewing Nelson Mandela’S LONG WALK TO FREEDOM :
Storyline and opinion
Nelson, is approached by the ANC to join the congress and he declines. He only accepts when his friend is beaten to death by white police officers one night. He agrees to politics knowing there is power in togetherness. Other than that, he is just someone who wants to do his family proud though prevented by his promiscuous nature. Mandela is now deeply involved in politics and his first marriage can’t withstand that pressure.
He organizes campaigns and protests against the discrimination of the blacks. He leads the people to burn their passports and refuse the authority of a state that hates them.
Winnie, the new love of his life and new wife shares the same political views as Mandela. She even becomes boundless when Nelson is locked away and she herself gets imprisoned. She is violent to a fault and instigates greater rebellion among the people who look up to her, she is devoted to this cause.
There is a portrayal of loss of the innocence of youth for them both as the battle with the state gets fiercer. The ANC employs violence to achieve its aims and they get labelled as terrorists. Mandela is locked up in a prison in Robben island with his three friends after being sentenced to life imprisonment.
More goes down.
How does a man go on from being labelled a terrorist to being the president of the same state and causing a radical change in the system?
It was a revolution he birthed.
When Winnie Mandela died on 2nd of April this year, someone tweeted something along the lines of Winnie and Nelson’s eventual fall out.
I genuinely wondered about that. I think on a whole Mandela had a poor relationship with women as reflected in the movie. Two marriages and both went sour?
Another angle is that, his thinking was advanced. Not only Mandela and his wife’s relationship grew a bit sour but his friends found it hard to believe him after he began dialoguing with the government. Something about this reminds me of pastor Sam Adeyemi’s teaching of how if you would be remembered 600 years from now, (if Jesus tarries,)the decisions you would be making today would be incomprehensible to the people around you because you’re factoring 600 years into the picture and they’re not.
Today, we still talk of Mandela, what if Winnie at that time and others, had some difficulties with him for a while? Perhaps because the cause he was pursuing was beyond their time; it would speak a lot in the coming years as we can now see.
Excerpts

My name is Nelson Mandela and I am the first accused. I do not deny that I have planned sabotage. I did not plan it in the spirit of recklessness or because I love violence. The hard fact is that fifty years of silence has brought the African people repressive legislations and fewer and fewer rights . Africans want a just share in the whole of south Africa. We want equal political rights. One man, one vote. I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination. I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the idea of a free democratic society where all persons live together in harmony with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and achieve but if need be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

Interviewer:”Mr. Mandela, what is it that you personally want?
M: ”I want freedom. I have beautiful children and a beautiful wife. I want them to walk free in their own land.”

Likes
The national call at the beginning of the movie is very much appreciated. These days, I question unity in my country, I question allegiance. Are we really raised to be loyal, and patriotic? Are the primary and secondary schools teaching us that things may not be the best right now but we should respect, cherish and serve our country? Correct me please but I don’t think many are. I was at a judicial function some weeks ago*; a special court sitting and as you are wont to in the midst of important figures, I was on my best behaviour and alert. When we sang the national anthem at the start and close of the court sitting, I reflected on the words of our anthem. It was one of the rare moments of my consciousness and resolved patriotism to my country. Perhaps this discussion is for another post. By way of summary, I admire the call to the south African young ones at the start of the movie.
Dislikes
My dislike stems from the fact that Nelson didn’t have faith in Jesus. Of course that told on his family. Mandela is a deeply flawed human as reflected, even sometimes violent in his early years but with time, he aged with wisdom.
As regards the filming, I’d rather the romance part was done away with so the movie can be viewed at all circles but it isn’t so.
I’m very much interested in reading the book, his biography. How does a person walk that bravely? At the time he did that long and lonely walk, he didn’t know he would one day be celebrated, he only did each day, what he thought was right and stood by his decision.
I adore his conclusion in the movie:

no one is born hating another because of the colour of his skin…”

I think it’s a worthwhile movie. Worth-the- while. Worth the time. Made also to fuel ruggedness in your beliefs, and to encourage you to sacrifice, and to lead. It preaches perseverance and that a life worth living is one spent in a cause you believe in.
Disclaimer: this is a recap of what is portrayed in the movie and in no way an attempt to recap Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s autobiography.
* I wrote this article long before this publication. It isn’t a few weeks ago I was at the sitting.
Penny A thousand naira for your thoughts?
Love and Impact,
Debby.

5 Christian movies you should definitely see

Hii people. How’s the year running out for you? Are feats being made? Goals being achieved?
Well, in the spirit of good entertainment and inspiration, if you haven’t already, here are movies to make the rest of your 2017 better!
It’s my list of Christian movies you should definitely see.
This isn’t a list of the absolutely awesome Christian movies around. No. This is my compilation of a few movies which have positively impacted me, in no particular order:
1. Miracles from heaven. Based on the true story of the Beam family from Burleson, Texas. 10 year-old Anna gets diagnosed with an incurable digestive motility disorder that threatens her life and tests the true faith of her entire family. Discouraged by naysayers, i.e “friends of Job”, Mrs. Beam finds her own faith slipping away. Anna tries to stay strong, but reaches the point of despair. And just when it seems like all hope is lost, the miraculous happens ‘in a despairing manner’, restoring everyone’s faith and bringing new faith to others.

Quotes:
“Albert Einstein said there are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle
And the other is as though everything is a miracle ”
Pastor Scott:” Let me tell you, at the lowest points of my life, I’ve tried it both ways: doing everything I can to connect to God, or walking away. And in my experience, one feels a whole lot better than the other.”
“Miracles are God’s way of letting us know he is here.”

2. God’s not dead 1 &2
I’m still wondering if it’s alright for me to lump both movies here. That’s because you can definitely see part 2 without having seen 1. Much more so because, they’re both so wonderful, and I don’t want to give you any other impression. I’m encouraging you to see both but 2 has impacted me the most.
Grace Welsey faces trials as she goes on trial (pun intended), risking the loss of everything she has in life, this because she answered a question regarding Jesus in her AP history class. Any manner of preaching is against school policy and state policy. Did she really preach? Is she on trial? Is the Christian faith on trial?

Quotes
:
“I’d rather stand with God and be judged by the world than stand with the world and be judged by God”
4. Courageous
It tells a story about having the courage to be a godly man, father and husband. The sacrifices it entails and how most men fail in their responsibilities. It centers on four deputies in a large sheriffs department and beams the light on their private lives. It touches on different social issues without being judgmental, as we find good men who are very flawed. There is a definite message to it yet it does not feel like a lecture.
Something about the simplicity of this movie draws me in personally.
Quote:

“I have heard many people say, who have lost a loved one, that in some ways it is like learning to live with an amputation. You do heal, but you are never the same.”

5. Grace card
Bill lost his son in a tragic accident 17 years prior and that has left him a bitter man and a racist. His family is riding the stormy seas.
Sam, a fellow police officer has trouble seeing the way forward in life.  He is also a minister who is unhappy with his stage in life. When his path crosses with McDonald, feelings he thought were long dead, being a pastor, get stirred up.
This movie is one of those movies that have left me with a principle in life. The principle is that not only God can give grace, man can give grace. If you’ve had a bit of an in-depth understanding of grace like I have, when the truth of that statement hits you, you won’t be able to withstand it.
Grace can be given without a request. It’s unmerited favour to that undeserving person and we all have the capacity to pull out that card every time a person pushes us to the wall.

Quotes
:

“it doesn’t take a man to fight Blaine, it takes a man to reach out”
“I promise to pray for you every day, ask your forgiveness, grant you the same, and be your friend always.”

Did u notice the numbers 2,3 issue? I didn’t want to add a movie I wasn’t convinced about just to make it the fifth movie. I also thought God’s not dead1 is quite good enough to stand as a separate movie recommendation. If my explanation is not satisfactory enough, well then lets have a bit of math. Consider God’s not dead1 to be half a movie recommendation and War room to be another half.
I hear someone saying “I’ve been wondering when you’ll include war room” lol. There you have it. Five.
SideNote: you’ll be surprised at the kind of reviews you have on the internet about some of these movies. Regardless I say they’re a sure bet to getting blessed and entertained.

So, which of these movies have you seen or not seen? Do you have any movie suggestions I’ve not included? Has anyone seen ‘do you believe?’ Pray tell in the comment box
Love,
Debby