Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Movies reflect human needs: Wonder--curiosity

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

ThemeMovies reflect human needs...


Wonder -- curiosity


Image from storyblocks.com

One day, during my teen years, as I sat in my sister's salon chair while she trimmed my hair, I wondered aloud, "I wonder what I'd look like with bangs." And suddenly--snip, snip, snip--I didn't need to imagine it. Be careful what you wonder aloud! (I looked good, by the way.)

But seriously, wondering--being curious, is a human need.
The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. (Albert Einstein)
Asking questions from a place of curious wondering is quite beneficial. Questions can kickstart creative ideas and bring solutions. How does this work? Is there a pattern or a connection here? 

  • While looking at a bicycle headlight connected to a dynamo, a young teenager in Malawi wonders how the mechanism works, and that curiosity helps him figure out a way to save his village from famine. (Based on a true story.)
Joy  (2015)
  • Joy Mangano (Jennifer Lawrence) cuts her hands while wringing out a mop used to clean up a spill with broken glass. She wonders about a solution, and it leads to her first major invention. (Based on a true story.) (My review found here.)

We need curiosity for more than inventions, though. Looking at ourselves and others through a lens of curiosity can move us beyond being judgmental. I wonder why I have that tendency? I wonder... what's that person's story?
Replace judgment with curiosity. (Lynn Nottage)
Like Stars on Earth (Taare Zameen Par) (2007)
  • A teacher approaches a "problem" child through curiosity, rather than with the harsh assessment of others, and wonders about his background--family, past school performance, behavior patterns--and discovers the root of the boy's learning difficulties.

Wondering... especially asking what if... can play a role in Storytelling.

That's what started the story of Braveheart (1995) as its screenwriter, Randall Wallace, stood outside the castle in Edinburgh, Scotland, looking at a statue of a man who bore the same last name -- William Wallace. Nearby was a statue of Robert the Bruce. He writes, "I began instantly to wonder, What if there was something in the life and death of William Wallace that had the power to transform Robert the Bruce from a plotting, cowardly betrayer to the greatest king in his country's history?" (*Citation below)

When I posted about Quest, Frédérique (find her blog here) commented that a quest is like curiosity to her, curiosity for what is around us. I hadn't thought of that... how curiosity can be linked to a quest. 

And that made me think... it was Randall Wallace's curiosity about his forefathers that took him to Scotland in the first place. 

I went on a similar quest in 2019, curious to see if I could flesh out a story about a specific Scottish ancestor... but after an unnerving experience and lots of wondering--What just happened? How does that connect? Is this significant?--the story I was chasing led me down an unexpected path. (I posted about that journey here.)


What do you wonder about? Has curiosity sent you on a quest? Do you approach problems from an angle of curiosity?



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



14 comments:

  1. Have you ever seen the Michael Douglas film 'Wonder Boys'? It was my first thought when I saw the 'wonder' theme - and a very funny film too, about writing and writers!
    https://iainkellywriting.com/2021/04/27/the-state-trilogy-a-z-guide-w/

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    1. I haven't seen that movie, and it certainly sounds intriguing. I keep a list of movie recommendations that I glean from comments... I'll add that one. Thanks!

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  2. I do think a sense of wonder and curiosity can take us to unexpected places. Weekends In Maine

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  3. I have a big smile on as I write this comment Trudy. That's how much I enjoyed this post.
    Have loved watching the two films: The Boy....and Tare Zameen...

    The back story to Braveheart is perfect for someone like me who's always asking questions--no, not annoying ones (I hope;)

    Love Frederique's blog and I can see how her curiosity and quest leads her to so many different and delightful routes.

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed the post, and that it made you smile. Now I'm smiling, too!

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  4. Isn't curiosity the thing that makes people make movies? The movie, I.Q. with Meg Ryan comes to mind. It's a romance but Einstein is there and he's testing the theory of getting his niece to date this guy who is maybe not so smart. It's a romance and you know how it goes but I thought it was a fun movie.

    Have a lovely day.

    My A-Z posts are here.

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    1. I recently watched I.Q. again. It has a lot of fun moments, and a wonderful cast! Thanks for adding that one.

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  5. Oh, adding that book to my TBR list! Thanks Trudy.

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    1. I highlighted a lot of insights while reading that book. (If you use Kindle, that version is only $2.99!)

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  6. It was curiosity that sent me to college to get my degree in psychology. Little did I know where that would lead me in terms of jobs! I think that Elisa in "The Shape of Water" had great curiosity that led her to keep going back to the Amphibian Man. So her curiosity was stronger than her fear!

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    1. Well, now you've piqued my curiosity! What jobs did your degree lead you to? (I'll understand if you prefer not to answer, especially on a public forum! If you want, you can email me at trudy.reelfocus@gmail.com)

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  7. Yes, bangs suits you ;) I like to read the prompt used by Liz @Laws of Gravity (https://lawsofgravity.blogspot.com/) once a week, What if? Always fun to be curious ;) Thanks for the mention!

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    1. I like the thought of a "What if?" prompt. I'll check that out!

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