Recently I’ve been engaged in a non compliant deferment of cinematic appreciation. A dutiful obligation that every father has must abide by, for imparting knowledge on their respective offspring. Now I’ve confessed in an earlier piece detailing my own concern in subjecting my daughter to stimulus that I found compelling at her age. Movies, games and other influences that help define my own adolescence, but shouldn’t be the preferred alternative to their own inquisitive appetites. Lecturing her on the indisputable superiority of my own burgeoning influences, compared to her own. But there is a necessity to diversify her options. To expand her viewing profile beyond Disney and the vapid narcolepsy of YouTube Kids. My entire responsibility as a father is predicated on teaching her the value that new doesn’t necessarily mean best. Nor that old is ostensibly better.
My task is made exponentially easier by my daughter’s natural curiosity. She’s at that impressinable age wherein the limits of her inquisitiveness are not restricted by the cynicism of others pessimism, or an elitist attitude, critical of anything new, a condition that exasperates my own thinking from time to time, but one I hope remains a dormant hereditary trait in her. Because of this energetic vigor to experience something she knows nothing about, she is far more receptive to my suggestions. For instance I felt confident in her flourishing maturity to suggest that we watch “Raiders Of The Lost Ark”, on the condition that if any moment during the movie provokes any kind of adverse emotions, that we would shut it off. Bearing in mind that my daughter would cower behind the sofa cushions when an animated otter in “Zootropolis” turned feral, I was concerned about her capacity to manage something a little more potent. But, to her credit she remained stoic in her conviction and remained unfazed by the swells of death and violence depicted. Though she did eventually get distracted as most children do, having to sit still for any length of time, which subsequently meant she missed the rather gratuitous scene with the titular “Ark” turning Paul Freeman’s head into an incendiary watermelon.
These exercises are essentially an exchange of interests. She gets to experience a modest sample of movies from before her time, of which there is considerable elapse in comparison to someone like myself who was born in the 80’s. But I too get to watch the things that interest her. It’s not always good, but objectively speaking neither were many of the movie’s or television shows I watched at her age. Some of which is reciprocated, others we might not be as amenable too. For example the “Princess Bride” just didn’t resonate with her at all. Now that doesn’t mean to say that in a few year’s time she won’t feel differently about it, but at the same time it doesn’t matter if she never watches it again. Ultimately it’s fun trying to discover thing’s that interest us both and share a quant, father/daughter connection. That’s is what is most important.
The question now is should we watch Jaws?