Chair Force Engineer

Sunday, February 18, 2007

The Dream Isn't Over

Every once in a while, Hollywood is able to give us a positive and uplifting movie that makes us believe, once again, in the power of our dreams. The Astronaut Farmer is just that movie. It will open nationwide on February 17, and I give my strongest recommendation to anybody who's thinking about seeing it.

The Astronaut Farmer is a simple tale about a man who attempts to live his dream of spaceflight by building his own Mercury-Atlas and enlisting his family to help him fly it. The acting is top-notch, especially the performance given by Billy Bob "Bad Santa" Thornton. Directed and written by the Polish brothers, the movie has a washed-out look that hearkens back to an era of simplicity and innocence. They've created a fantasy that doesn't promise realism, but gives audiences a believable world where strength of will can overcome any physical barrier.

How do I evaluate a movie like The Astronaut Farmer? Do I give it high marks based on its ability to make me suspend disbelief? Do I judge it based on its ability to make a jaded man such as myself to believe in dreams again? On both counts, it succeeds marvelously. It reinfoces the values that I hold dearly, including the love of family, resistance to overbearing government, and belief in our power to make our dreams into reality.

On February 20, 1962, John Glenn lifted off on a mission that would captivate the nation. Forty-five years later, we have a movie that tries to recall those maudlin days gone by. The Astronaut Farmer is a beautiful fantasy for people of all ages to enjoy.

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