Monday, April 26, 2021

Movies reflect human needs: Vulnerability

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

ThemeMovies reflect human needs...


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Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change. (Brené Brown)
I had a different topic selected for V, but one night I repeatedly dreamed that I needed to post about vulnerability.

Perhaps that dream and topic is aimed specifically at me. I've built plenty of walls over the years, protecting myself, making sure I wouldn't be vulnerable. But, when I block myself from feeling negative emotions, I block positive emotions, too.

I've come to see it as vulnerability -- an ability, an asset -- and that helps me remember that even though being vulnerable opens myself up to being wounded, the ability to feel that pain is important.
Being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure. (Bob Marley)
When I thought about it, I realized vulnerability is entwined through all the human needs I've covered so far...

When considering movies reflecting vulnerability, these scenes came to mind...

  • When the "Dragon Lady" (Meryl Streep) without make-up and evidently crying, lets her guard down and discusses her upcoming divorce. (Click here for that scene.)
  • The students open up and share about their lives and horrific experiences. (Click here for the scene.)
Notting Hill  (1999) 
  • Trying to be invulnerable, William (Hugh Grant) wants to protect himself from further hurt, and Anna (Julia Roberts) vulnerably expresses, "... don't forget... I'm also just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her." (Click here for the scene.)
  • Socrates (Nick Nolte) tells Dan (Scott Mechlowicz), "A warrior is not about perfection or victory or invulnerability. He's about absolute vulnerability. That is the only true courage."
Twins (1988)
  • Vincent (Danny DeVito) felt abandoned and unwanted for most of his life, so when he finally meets his birthmother, his expression of apprehensive hopefulness permeates the vulnerable moment.  (Click here for the scene.)

Do you recall or have a favorite movie scene portraying vulnerability? What are your thoughts about vulnerability weaving through our human needs? Were you surprised by this, too?

(Note: The movies listed might not be completely family-friendly. See my "Movie Content" information on the blog's sidebar.)


  1. I remember the lines Courage is not the absence of fear but acceptance of fear. I dont remember any specific vulnerability related scenes but I have seen The Devil Wears Prada and Notting Hill.
    The first time i saw my father cry was when my grandfather died . I had no idea about that side of his and I was pretty taken aback

    1. Were you taken aback in a good way when you saw your father cry? When characters reveal vulnerability, I feel more connection.

  2. For some reason when I thought about the twins, I imagined Dawney Johnson in it instead of Arnold.. It took me sometime to recollect the whole movie.
    A surprise package. Great list of movies as usual and all of them are my favorites.. This time nothing goes into the to watch later list.

    1. I'm glad I hit upon some of your favorites! I've been gleaning lots of movies from reader comments... my "want to watch" list keeps growing.

  3. I love Brené Brown and have watched her Ted talk a few times. Her messaging around vulnerability is great. I don't have a specific movie popping up in my head but in general think many movies have scenes or moments where vulnerability plays a key role. Weekends In Maine

    1. I have several of Brené Brown's books. She definitely helped me see vulnerability in a positive light.

  4. I see vulnerability like Bob Marley's quote. We are all vulnerable at some points in our lives. Some cover it all up and become hardened while others (like Marley) use it to write poetry:)
    The point is how do we use our softness? Do we harness it to create beauty or do we use it as an excuse to play the victim?
    Wonderful word choice Trudy.
    I hope Freedom Writers is on Netflix. The Peanut Butter Falcon wasn't--so I'll have to wait till it shows up:)

    1. I like what you said about how we use our softness. Using it to play the victim doesn't help us grow.

      I don't think Freedom Writers is streaming on Netflix right now, but hopefully you can find it sometime. Such a powerful, inspirational, movie.

  5. Your examples of vulnerability from The Devil Wears Prada, and Notting Hill are spot on. Another one with Julia Roberts is the scene in Runaway Bride where she goes to Ike's apartment to ask him to marry her. So sweet.

    1. That scene in Runaway Bride is wonderful example of vulnerability. Thanks!

  6. Being vulnerable is being human I guess. This leads to empathie, caring. I know all the movies on your list, yeah!!

    1. "Being vulnerable is being human" ... so true.

      I'm glad the movies I listed were familiar to you! :D