There’s a number of movies that have had a lasting effect on me. The Legend of Bagger Vance – has Will Smith taken an Academy Award home for this one? If not, he definitely should have in my book…- is on that list as well as Reign Over Me, The Green Mile, The Shipping News, K-Pax, Powder, Peaceful Warrior, The Horse Whisperer, Havana – to name just a few. I later found that there is a common theme connecting them: They’re stories of profound transformation of one of the main characters, usually after substantial loss and/or trauma, even loss of identity (which is one of the side effects and outcomes of traumatic life experiences b.t.w. – telling from personal experience and lots of research into the subject). In a broader context, you might think of each of above mentioned stories of the archetypical hero’s journey in that the latter usually involves some deep transformation as well. As I’ve embarked on my own quest of coming to terms with my past throughout the past decade, in retrospect it’s not a big surprise that above movies and stories spoke to me on the most profound level and highly significant/personal ways.
And now someone from the realm of my musical contacts referred me to this biopic piece on ‘The Dude‘, the musical, political, cultural giant that is Quincy Jones, a man who shaped and redefined contemporary music like none other before him – but didn’t stop there. Without being a spoilsport, I don’t think it as exaggerating to say that ‘Q’ wrote history – on every level of his many talents, be they as an artist, composer, producer, mentor, cultural icon and influencer… the list goes on.
I think what stands out to me – and in general from watching the film – is his unbelievable, probably unparalleled work ethic and incredible productivity: The man is his work in all most of his waking time – and radiating love and grace while he’s at it. That is the other aspect that stands out to me: How kindly, almost affectionately he treats collaborators, fellow artists or actually just about everyone he crosses paths with. The man radiates love, true, genuine love for his fellow man. I’m afraid, I’m giving away too much already, forgive me for that. But let’s just say for now that this movie brought to life by his daughter Rashida Jones enters my list of all time favorites at the very top section of above list. Highly recommended, not only to avid music lovers, but just about anyone looking for direction, guidance or simply a figure they can relate to in terms of what to make of their life.