I just cannot get enough of the many and varied lessons on life that are expressed throughout the movie. If you did not read the first post I made for this movie, please do so (and if you did read it, do it again just for fun). Don’t discredit or not consider watching this movie because it is a musical (and you just don’t care for those kind of flicks), or because you would rather see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, or because circuses are not your thing. Trust me, give it a chance and watch it…and really pay attention.
It would be hard to justify any single lesson being the most valuable, but for me the idea of relationships transcending everything else is what matters most. At the end of the day it is our RELATIONSHIPS that bring us joy. Our ability to share our thoughts and love with others allows us solitude, it enables gratitude, and ultimately defines us.
The movie allows us to see the variety of relationships that our lives are sprinkled with. From those in our own homes (Barnum’s wife and two children), the extended family (the in-laws), those we work with (the entire museum/circus crew that Barnum employs) and everyone else in our lives.
P.T. Barnum understands that joy in one’s life is what makes life worth living, and that relationships are at the core of that joy.
He inspires those he hires to believe that their dreams can in fact come true. He even takes a young man, Phillip Carlyle, who has lived a most privileged life amongst the “swells” and convinces him to turn in that life for one that will actually bring him true joy.
Barnum experiences his highs and lows. He takes risks and some of those risks effect everyone around him. But through all of it, he remains focused on “righting” his “wrongs” and mending the relationships that he both initially created and nearly destroyed.
A movie like this provides us with an education that we don’t get in school. A movie like this does not come around very often. The value of such a film is not realized until some special moment occurs, and it has nothing to do with how much money is brought in at the box office or on-line.
My friends call me cheap…one really close one even went as far to say that I am only good at TWO things: working out and saving money! The truth is, this was indeed some of the best money I have ever spent (plus the extra $5 spent on the soundtrack, which is normally $10…my girls have been singing along every single day and it has definitely brought me joy, and it definitely beats crying, screaming, whining, etc).
I hope I have convinced you to find two hours to sit down and watch. I doubt you will regret it.