Monday, May 16, 2005

"What do you hear, what do you say?"

If there is one thing you should know about me it is that I LOVE old films. Black and white, 30's, bad sound/light, crap make-up and even worse acting. But I love them, and being in Netflix, I order tons of them!

Anyway, I remembered a film that I had seen probably about 18 years ago (God, I can't believe I'm THAT old) and I saw that Netflix had it in their cache so I shoved it in my queue.

Well, on a side note, it just so happens that Number 2 son is starting to hang about with some juvenile delinquents (yes, even in this piddly little town we have them) and there doesn't appear to be much I can do about it except either keep him locked up in the house 24/7 or try and instil in him what could happen if he even STARTS to think of doing anything with them. I think it was Thomas Jefferson who said something like "Morality... may be instilled into their minds"

(Don't think I'm all educated because I said that, I found the quote when I was looking up the spelling of instil!!!)

So, I digress. Just as I'm trying to figure out how to get it through his head, the film I ordered came through my letterbox (well, it didn't come through it coz we don't have those over here in the States - we have a crappy mailbox OUTSIDE wherein you have to get cold if it's snowing, wet if its raining and blown over if it's windy when you get your mail!!!!!)

"Get on with it already " I hear you shout!!!!

So, as my son is grounded (AGAIN), I made him sit and watch the film. He sulked, whined and bitched but we watched it anyway. "What film?" I hear you ask?

Angels With Dirty Faces


Now, the story goes like this. We have two childhood buddies living in New York City slums in the 1920s, "Rocky" Sullivan played by James Cagney and Jerry Connolly played by Pat O'Brien. They were hooligans when young but they turn to entirely different lifestyles as they get older. Rocky is a huge criminal and all the kids in gangs look up to him and admire all the shit he does, but his friend Jerry who is now a priest wants the kids to be good and not get into trouble.

Anyway, Rocky finally gets caught for murder and has to be sent to the electric chair but he doesn't care, he's rough and tough and won't let the 'law' see him crack! Jerry goes to see him and asks him to act scared and 'yellow' so that the kids will see that he was a coward and not want to be like him.

Does he do it? Well, you'd have to watch the film! Keep hankies close by!

Do I think watching this film had ANY affect on Dan? Seeing that only bad things happen to bad people? and that you can change your ways? Probably not. But I hope he realises that I am here for him, and that I am trying my best to make sure he gets to 18 without getting into too much trouble, and if it takes me bitching, shouting, moaning, screaming, grounding and generally just losing my mind to get there, then thats what it takes.

I know four things that came out of watching the film with him.

  • He is now going to be named "Soapy" after one of the characters.
  • We will be greeting each other with the "What do you hear, what do you say?" greeting that Jimmy Cagney used EVERY time he met someone!
  • We spent quality time together and he loved the film.
  • and I am passing on my appreciation of old films on to my kids!
I can't ask for anything more!


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