IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE!
Frank Capra’s 1946 film, It’s a Wonderful Life, is considered one of the greatest movies of all time. It was nominated for five Oscars, and has been recognised by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American films ever made.
The film begins with two lights blinking in the sky high above the earth. These two lights, we learn, are two angels talking to each other. The smaller light is Clarence Odbody, a novice angel, who is being given an assignment by the bigger light, his angelic supervisor.
Clarence’s task is to go and help a man on earth called George Bailey who needs help urgently.
“Is he sick?” asks Clarence.
“Worse,” replies Clarence’s supervisor. “He is discouraged.”
George Bailey, it turns out, is a good man who has led a kind, helpful and sacrificial life, but in the process has missed out on gaining wealth and fame. Tonight he is in the depths of despair, for he has been brought to the verge of ruin by an unscrupulous businessman. Clarence goes down to earth, manages to stop George from harming himself, but try as he might, is unable to cheer him up.
Finally, George Bailey says, ‘I wish I had never been born!”
And suddenly Clarence knows how to help George.
He shows George an alternative reality – the world as it would have been had he (George) never been born! As George walks through this version of the world, no one in his town recognises him. All the people he had helped throughout his life are leading sad and difficult lives because there was no George to help them in their time of trouble. Some people whose lives he had actually saved aren’t even around.
George starts to see clearly that his life hasn’t been a failure after all, that he has done much good and helped many people. Finally convinced that Clarence is his guardian angel, George begs for his life back. The original reality is restored, and a grateful George rushes home.
It is a powerful movie with a powerful message. — There is much to be grateful for in each of our lives. As George sees his life from a different perspective, he realises that each of his sacrifices has, as in fact, counted for a lot. Despite all his struggles, his life is truly priceless because he is rich in the things that actually matter — love, respect, goodwill, and friendship.
Listen to what Hollywood actress Jodie Foster has to say about the movie…
And do watch the film when you get a chance. You won’t regret it.
Have a great week!