Someone told me the other day that I look like a sensitive person. I don’t know what exactly a sensitive person looks like, but apparently something a bit like me. This got me to thinking about the saddest books or movies and such that I’ve run into and so I thought I might write a blog called
Things That Made Me Cry
but it turns out I couldn’t really think of anything. At least, not a “Meghan Salter within the first ten minutes of watching Titanic for the second time” kind of bawling my eyes out. But for the few things that have at least come close I thought I’d give props in testimony of their weight.
(1) Rama Revealed
This is the last in a sequence of four books, the first of which is Rendezvous with Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke. The latter three books were written largely by Gentry Lee with input from Clarke, and haven’t been as critically acclaimed. But then again, I generally don’t like Clarke’s work, and I actually preferred the later three installments. With much more focus on characterisation, the last novel brings together all the loose ends of entire lives and for that reason was quite moving. It’s been years since I read them, though, so I can only hope that they stand the test of time.
(2) The Iron Giant
I actually just finished watching this now. It’s an animated film set in a small American town during the early years of the Cold War, where people were faced with the dawn of the space age and told that duck-and-cover was enough to save them from a nuclear bomb. Though a bit cliche at times, it is generally quite entertaining (my sister and I both enjoy it a lot) and the climatic scenes are very well done—”Where’s the giant, Mansley?”
(3) Change of Address
Anybody who knows me well knows that I’m a sucker for the last of anything, in particular television series. Of course when a series finale doesn’t live up it’s a huge disappointment (Seinfeld, Friends, and Will and Grace are all examples of that), but Fraggle Rock pulled it off better than any other show that comes to mind. Though a kids show, it never shied away from some heavy topics—death, war, racism—and provided a philosophy for kids that, as Jim Henson said, was meant to bring peace to the world. This final episode gave the show closure (rare as it is in childrens’ television) and also a piece of wisdom that I still keep in mind today: You cannot leave the magic.
Now of course I won’t guarantee that anybody else will think of these in the same way that I do. They’re all the type of thing that I know is a bit off or quirky in the back of my head, but to me that makes them just that much more important.