I noticed something a little bit disturbing recently.
I just watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding (again) and something weird happened.
You know the scene towards end, the reception at the wedding? Where Tula's father gives them a wedding present? A house?
Well, in that scene I got a little misty-eyed.
(Aside: I'm a guy, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I have feelings, so there!)
But anyway, it was such a sweet scene. Her father goes through the whole movie disapproving of everything Tula does, and then in this one little act of kindness he tells her that all is forgiven and that he loves her, no matter who she marries.
Well, I witnessed similar scenes in real life, and nothing happened. I thought it was nice, I thought it was sweet, but I didn't start tearing up.
That's when I started thinking about it and I noticed something. Take a movie like Forest Gump. It's a great movie, and there are a few scenes there that are real tear-jerkers. It was like sad and sweet at the same time. But we see stuff like that in real life! Do we cry?
So, then I thought, How come this doesn't happen to me in real life? Why, in real life do I emote on a much more intellectual level?
And the answer is not what you would think. It isn't because I'm a cold hearted bastard or a robot with a metal lump for a heart because I'm not (despite what a past girlfriend may think), it's because the question is wrong!
I do emote in real life on an emotional level. The reason why I don't cry in scenes like that is because they are not scenes like that!
In the movie it's not just the action, the current acting of the characters, it's not just the recent history that you know. It's the sound track.
The producers/editors/directors/whoever-thinks-they're-in-charge know when a sad or really sweet scene is coming, and they want to milk it for all it's worth. So, they play the right background music for the scene. Something soft. Not something you're likely to notice because it merges so well with the scene. The way the music starts out soft, and then as the emotions climax it builds a little, adding the right notes in the right places....
Anyway, it's the music with the scene that gets me all misty-eyed.
So, I thought that if real life had a sound track, we'd all be much more sensitive to stuff like this.
I don't think it would make the world a better place, but it would certainly make it more interesting.
I mean, come on, who doesn't want Ride of the Valkyries to play when you're trying to catch the bus?