Monthly Archives: January 2014

Tennessee Williams Has Turned a Special Shade of Dark Magnolia Green over “August: Osage County”

I have come to the conclusion that the most powerful force on the planet is not the tide, or the elements, or the sun’s warmth. I believe it is family dysfunction. Yes. There. I said it.

Erosion, scorched earth, or a thousand McMansions in rows  don’t hold a candle to the world’s problems created by family dysfunction. I know what the good book says about the love of money, but what is the source of all of that greed? The real root of all evil is family dysfunction.

Can you tell that I saw “August: Osage County” this weekend? Don’t worry. I will not give away a thing.

Let’s just say that Tennessee Williams has turned a special shade of dark magnolia green over this one.

The trailer makes it seem like another hilarious movie about family problems. I think it was the most uncomfortable movie I have ever seen. Uncomfortable, as in, I felt like I was eavesdropping on a family’s most intense personal pain that I had no business knowing. I did nothing to deserve a place at their table, but it was humbling and in a perverse way, an honor to be there, as they each confided in me. While I sat in a row of seven girlfriends in that plush theater seat, they let me in on everything and then, I was complicit.

I feel the need to inject a qualifier here. My own childhood home was eerily void of conflict and craziness. I have to hand it to my parents. I don’t know how they did it, but Rome could have been burning and my parents spared my siblings and me from knowing. For that, I will always be awed and grateful. In my career, when I hear the stories of what is normal in some children’s lives, I pay mental homage to my Mama and Daddy and their success in keeping me oblivious to evil as long as they could.

The most illogical thing I can imagine is being mean, vicious and striking out to hurt the people in your life that you should love. But there’s the adage that people buy into wholeheartedly about hurting the ones you love the most. I am calling major BS alert on that one.

Sometimes crazy is the natural and normal response to unnatural and abnormal circumstances.

Let that one sink into your consciousness for a minute. I wish I could claim that line as my own, but it was a “someone once said” Facebook response to a friend’s post about, you guessed it. Family dysfunction.

Meryl Streep has been nominated for a Golden Globe by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for Best Actress. I predict she will win. Among an impeccably selected cast, hers was the most impressive performance that I have ever seen in my lifetime. Nothing comes close to her portrayal of Violet Weston. How Hollywood can categorize this movie as a comedy gives some scary perspective into their collective psyche.

So, as  human nature would have it, I am dying to see this movie again.