A Lesson on Love from Malcolm and Marie

Blog

Malcolm and Marie is a new film on Netflix starring Zendaya (Marie) and John David Washington (Malcolm) written and directed by Sam Levinson. I applaud the film’s creativity– a two character film shot in a 35mm black and white frame. It is gorgeous and captivating to see. However, the depth of the dialogue falls short resting heavily on a criticism of Hollywood, the film industry and of course, film critics.

I found myself falling for the characters but not really sure who to root for. From the beginning, we are thrust into an uncomfortable tension between a young Hollywood couple.

Marie, a former actress and recovering drug addict, is frustrated yet indifferent when Malcolm forgets to thank her in his speech at his movie premiere. Marie and Malcolm then proceed to use the historical precedent of their relationship to evidence the love, indifference, support and chaos they’ve both endured. The characters fight with veracity using cruel and uncomfortable language. This ultimately augments the dangerous consequences of disrespect and manipulation in personal relationships.

Relationships are a juicy topic so let’s dive in. What has COVID-19 taught us about relationships? A variety of sources reveal the pandemic has presented a “perfect storm” when it comes to relationships. Some are focusing on building a family and improving their mental health. While others have moved-in together after a couple of months of dating. Some couples got engaged, while others filed for separation or divorce. At first glance, this doesn’t seem particularly special. You can say this all happened before the pandemic. You’re right. But within the past year, there has been a dramatic increase in “corona-cuffing,” “accelerated relationships” and shocking separations within a short amount of time.

During times of confinement, it is imperative to put communication on the forefront of our relationships. Throughout the film, Marie struggles to reveal what she really wanted. She wanted to be casted in Malcolm’s film, but the film implies she failed to make the effort. She wanted her efforts to be recognized but perhaps this personal value was not communicated earlier in the relationship. Malcolm merely wants to celebrate his big moment. After receiving constant praise at the premiere, he feels the fruits of his labor are finally paying off. He wants to take this moment to celebrate with the girl he loves. But, he is unable to see how his actions have forced Marie into a mental state of indifference and resentment.

When we take on anything in life, we need support. And for Marie and Malcom, the film projects a downward spiral of miscommunication, ignorance and blinding emotion. People often project our preferred method of support onto others and ignore the fact that different methods of support are needed in different stages of our lives. I am not a relationship expert by any means. However, this movie piqued my curiosity and invited me to explore how our life stages influenced the support we need.

What I found is that there are very distinct methods of support for different stages of our lives. Some scientists found men and women go through different life stages of development. [1] For Malcolm, it appears he is in the “building” stage of this life where he is determined to make a name for himself. His whole self is pouring his energy into his craft and that amount of energy doesn’t leave much for more. It is not that he’s lazy or indifferent as Marie sees it. He is just developing his professional sense of self. While Marie, recovering for her past, is looking for the appreciation she never received before. She is possibly looking for words of affirmation from Malcolm. [2]

Overall, I am upset with this film because it disrupts and taints our views of relationships. I believe if we looked at relationships with a curious rather than confrontational eye, we will find more love, understanding and reasons for our behaviors. Or maybe I should exhibit a fierce passion to question and challenge others. What do you think?

As I end this post, I wanted to leave with you a quote from a book I am currently reading,

“. . .we often mistake love for fireworks – for drama and dysfunction. But real love is very quiet, very still. It’s boring, if seen from the perspective of high drama. Love is deep and calm – and constant.”

Alex Michaelides, The Silent Patient

Until next time,

Lauryn

Sources

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2990527/

[2] https://www.5lovelanguages.com

Put the QT back in Quarantine

Blog, TV Shows
Screen Shot 2020-03-22 at 2.58.53 PM

Hey family!

This COVID-19 has me out here trying some new stuff. Don’t worry I am staying 6 feet away from people. But after eight days of being in the house, fresh air was definitely needed.

During my time of hibernation social distancing, I decided to watch a new show on Netflix called GLOW UP.

Instead of enchanting you with my rhetoric, this review was made with a dash of iMovie skills and my iPhone 7.

WATCH BELOW:

WARNING: You will want to take cinematography lessons from me after watching this video.

It’s only 5-6 minutes because I have the attention span of a 6-year-old child. Can we talk about this thumbnail image people… someone better take me out the library and teach me this hip YouTube thing.

If you watched my video until the end…you are amazing. Seriously, hats off to you. There are some pretty good bloopers in there. I think the bloopers are longer than the video…

Definitely inherited my father’s cinematography skills.

ANYWAY

Glow Up is breathtaking show about art and beauty coming to life.

What is beauty, you ask? (damn that’s a deep philosophical question that society has been grappling with for centuries…)

Confucius said “Everything has beauty but not everyone sees it.”

Popular opinion has told us “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” or “beauty is only skin deep”

I think a freshly printed paper of my final essay the day I have to turn it in to my professor is beautiful. Come on, there is something attractive about a nice looking document. Am I right? #official.

Pizza is also pretty cool. And chocolate too. Damn, do I only see beauty in food? That’s probably because my Quarantine schedule is:

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It be like that sometimes.

Glow Up shattered my stereotypical opinions of this through makeup. This show is simply inviting. A cheerful reminder that our colorful collection experiences are worth celebrating. Since we are social distancing, you can try out new looks in the comfort of your home and no one has to know 😉

So change your sweat pants and comb your hair. After watching GLOW UP you’ll be putting the “QT” back in Quarantine.

Stay healthy and home my friends <3

Until next time,

Lauryn 🙂


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I’ve been at “The Firm”

Blog, Law and Entertainment, Movies

It’s been a long time. Sorry. Let me first begin by saying that there were certain life activities that have kept me away from this blog (law school). But. . . I am back and better than ever!!

You know, Johann Sebastian Bach the German composer and musician?

Well, not better than ever. This is the best it’s going to get.

Life Update: I survived the first year of law school. Which isn’t easy. You think your life is going to like:

However, it’s more like…

Next thing you know, every human interaction is a chance to tell everyone how difficult law school is…

Now, I plan to use every human interaction to deliver great commentary on movies, shows, and plays. I know what you are thinking…

Yes, I know. But what if I tell you it is more complicated than that.

For example, The Firm, a 1993 thriller starring Tom Cruise and Jeanne Tripplehorn is a shocking tale about Mitch McDeere, a young Harvard Law who gets offered an opportunity of a life time. Recruited by all the top firms in all the top cities, McDeere decides to accept a small firm in Texas. This is no average firm. Warning there are spoilers ahead.

The firm gives him:

  • A fully furnished house
  • New car
  • Phone
  • Bar Exam preparation courses
  • Prestige
  • Happiness

For Mr. McDeere, a brilliant yet broke law student, this is better than a dream come true. Before I move on, can we take a moment to appreciate young Tom Cruise. . .


I’ll teach you about jurisdiction if we change the venue to my place


Wow

Okay…court is now back in session.

What begins as a dream come quickly changes into a living nightmare. The firm is legal counsel to the Mafia and every attorney they’ve hired has died when trying to leave. Luckily, Mr. McDeere uses his good looks intelligence to strategically defeat the firm while still following the law. It’s a tremendous thriller. Made in 1993, The Firm is a movie far beyond its time. A thriller with a sophisticated twist demonstrating how crafty one can be while still following the law.

If you are one of those people who are constantly looking for “the loophole,” you’ll find it in this film. Perfectly captured on film, director Sydney Pollack displays what it truly means to “think like a lawyer.”

To add, the movie has some pretty colorful characters. Holly Hunter plays a risqué yet clever secretary. Gary Busey plays a savvy private investigator. While David Strathairn plays McDeere’s older brother, a man convicted for committing manslaughter. The four characters create an unlikely team, making the audience laugh, cry and stay at the edge of the seat until the very end.

The film leverages on McDeere’s inability to move on from his insecurity. Growing up in a lower economic class, McDeere strived to give his wife the house, car, and stability to create the life they have always wanted. However, McDeere traded his dream for a harsh reality. His salary-driven decision did not make him happier. In fact, it got him into more trouble.

Overall this film was a classic cinematic masterpiece. A must-see for action lovers, thrill-seekers, and intellectuals everywhere. 🙂