When a scene is well written, directed and acted, we can feel targeted or triggered. We are treated or entreated — we are drawn to something that evokes what’s best in us. These dramatic figures are like a gift to us, and they hit each of us in our own way, in our own spot.
It’s been almost 40 years since I saw The Deer Hunter , but I still want to be like DeNiro who draws a line of tough love in the sand, refusing to give his extra hunting boots to his buddy Stan, because the latter is always forgetting things and needs to learn a lesson. DeNiro seems to think Stan and his other buddies should know what it means when he holds up a rifle shell and says, “This is this.” They look at him likes he’s crazy, but to this day that line says to me: “This is this. Talk the talk. But walk the walk.”
The Steve Jobs movie had a line that shook me deeply, too. Jobs asks Joanna, his right-hand woman, “what’s wrong?” and she replies, “What’s been wrong with me for nineteen years. I have been a witness, and I tell you I’ve been complicit.” I won’t undermine the movie by sharing the full context and the result, but when she makes the connection to see that being a “witness” made her “complicit” demonstrated wide-eyed courage I want one day to have. Finally, in Bridge of Spies, James Donovan played by Tom Hanks is a “stoikiy muzhik,” a Russian meaning I cannot tell you without ruining the movie altogether. But you will almost surely want to be one — a stoikiy muzhik — after you see this movie. (I strongly recommend both movies!)
What strikes me is these characters strike me. Strike me to be my best self.
I’d love for you to take a minute to click the “comment on this post” at the bottom of this email and share with my readers and me the film character/scene that comes to your mind as an invitation to stretch into greatness as you enter this week to
Lead with your best self.