I have set many physical goals. I feel like I don't have to cheat about my job. I woke up more days than I wasn't interested in holding out. I don't repeat affirmations and don't watch videos of hero training with motivational music. I turn on Casablanca.
It's a classic love story, an old film. It is also a commentary on what is required for an actual virtuous act of sacrifice.
Rick Blaine, played by Humphrey Bogart, owns a night club in Casablanca, Morocco, a still neutral area during World War II. Both German officials and European refugees made their way to Casablanca. Many of the refugees tried to enter the United States who had not yet entered the war.
Before Rick owned his nightclub, he was in Paris, where he met a woman, Ilsa Lund, played by Ingrid Bergman. They fell in love, but she suddenly had to leave for reasons he never understood.
Years later she shows up at his bar with her husband. She had been married when she and Rick shared their romance in Paris, but thought their husband was dead after being captured by the Nazis. He was a very high profile person who led the resistance to the Nazi occupation.
Ilsa reluctantly left Rick in Paris when she found out that her husband was still alive. She didn't love her husband as much as Rick, but felt obliged to be by his side.
When Ilsa entered his club, Rick was understandably upset to see her. But the two finally met alone and admitted that they still loved each other. They started planning how they would be together and let Ilsa's husband Victor continue to work to lead the resistance without them.
When he planned this, Rick, who knew Victor, was given confidential information about how important his work was and how he needed Ilsa to do it. It was an impetus for him. Victor himself explained how the thought of her kept him going while he was captured.
Rick is visibly torn. Above all, he wants to be with Ilsa, but he knows what to do and develops a new plan without telling Ilsa. Rick arranges for a small plane to secretly fly from Casablanca to Victor without the authorities knowing. The city had already become too dangerous for Victor to stay, and he was needed elsewhere.
Ilsa thought she and Rick wanted to take Victor to the plane and send him off alone. At the climax of the film, Victor thanks Rick and gets on the plane because he believes Ilsa will follow. She stays behind and turns to Rick, who expects him to take her away and the pilot to go without her.
Instead, Rick tells her to get on the plane. He explains that if she stays with him and is thrown into a concentration camp, she is likely to be captured and that he will not allow her to do so. He tells her that she is part of Victor's work. And how this work works and what it will lead to is more important than the problems of three individuals.
There is the story. That is something that changes my usual actions and not just my attitude towards the day. Stories highlight some basic truths that are almost impossible to explain directly.
Understanding the truth changes behavior and actions for good. And that is far more valuable than fleeting inspiration that you get from fictional motivational speeches or exciting action films.
Rick tells Ilsa in one of the most famous lines in the cinema that you will regret if this plane leaves the ground and you are not with him. Maybe not today and maybe not tomorrow, but soon and for the rest of your life.
Some people like to be seen as a martyr. They feel that this justifies their personal inaction. It is usually related to an addiction to chaos and attention-grabbing behavior.
The sincere ability to look at a situation that is remote from your own perspective and desires, as Rick did, and to act in the most significant way for the benefit of the greatest number is unusual.
Rick has a purpose and is unwavering in making the most difficult decisions. He has not made himself a sad martyr. He only saw what had to be done for the greatest good, despite himself.
History illuminates the truth, a guiding principle by which you can live. Something that could create better habits and mood. All the great films do that. All great books do that. Because it's the story that connects us.
I could watch this film and record more parts of the story each time. It is a film that is designed like a great book. His story. I love history. And I have made it my goal to find and watch such films. Just like great books, they relax an excruciating fear in me. The kind that shows up on a Sunday evening.
Without a doubt, one of the best performances by Will Smith in The Pursuit of Happyness. And without a doubt one of the best films in Casablanca to drive me to training and continue. Based on the real story of Christopher Gardner, the film shows how a man can make bad decisions for most of his life, reach new depths and still achieve ambitions.
The film starts with Chris & # 39; wife leaving him and his little son. They are workers who are going through hard times after Chris made a bad decision to sell medical equipment that nobody wants to buy. Chris & # 39; woman leaves without much warning and leaves him alone to take care of her son and have a roof over her head.
They lose their apartment and he takes his son to motels, homeless shelters, and in the bottom, deeply moving part of the film, he spends a night on the subway and finally in a storage room at a train station. The scene addresses the nature of human vulnerability. He holds his son tight in his arms and cries with complete despair in his eyes.
But then Chris shows the indomitable spirit of humanity and the potential in all of us. He convinces his son that this whole experience can be a game. In this way, he protects his son's innocence and belief that dad is stronger than the world around him. Chris may not believe it himself, but he keeps his son's faith.
The very next morning he leaves the storage room and works even harder. The night was very disturbing, but he only allowed himself a night of despair. He emerges from his hell and changes everything necessary to keep him and his son away from the door of the storage room.
I have dealt with people who have knocked me down and situations that have been stacked against me. But no person or thing antagonizes me like myself. My own obsessive thoughts keep me awake at night, not the opinions that others have about me. I'm busy with what I haven't done yet. There is a place I haven't come to where I should be. I've tried every opportunity to be kind to myself and learn to be present, but only when I see or read a story like Chris do I understand that history always has moments when we spend a night in hell have to spend.
Chris doesn't stop there, endures sleepless nights and public ridicules to make some money for him and his son, and starts an internship with little chance of leading to a safe, paid position where he says a lot of people that he is not suitable for.
In another outstanding scene, Chris tells how he was able to work twice as fast as his colleagues. He found the best times to call potential customers, works until lunchtime, and even refuses to drink water during his workday so he doesn't have to leave his phone to go to the bathroom.
He does all of this out of necessity. The other interns are younger, they only have this responsibility. He has to go earlier to pick up his son. There were months when he had to go earlier to queue for homeless shelters so that his son could have a bed to sleep on.
And that can summarize the lesson that can be drawn from the film – necessity. As you may have guessed, he gets the position and gets very rich. And that also applies to the real Christopher Gardner.
There were circumstances in his life. Some, maybe because of mistakes he made, others because the world is unforgiving. It would be understandable if he became a miserable, depressed person who was annoyed with everything and gave up completely.
But he had his son to take care of, and in his mind he had to go on and not lose his faith, and he did. Acting out of necessity can bring out the potential in you that seems limitless if you can act despite all feelings of hopelessness.
My nights in hell make me feel isolated. But when I see this film and see the same story being told over and over again, I remember that this is part of this great, long story. To see the story of a man who has traveled so far down and to see how the best of us can come after it.
Have you ever seen the Lion King as an adult? Not the new, the original animated film. Even if you have no children and do not appreciate humor, take another look at it. It is a masterpiece. The story was so thoughtfully written with fully developed examples of basic topics found in countless epic stories.
It closely follows the outline of Joseph Campbell's Hero's Journey, which is a model for almost every great story of a champion.
One of the film's most important moments is when Simba has his initiation, as Campbell describes it, to be called out as a hero. He was called by Nala and led by Rafiki through a symbolically dark place.
Then Rafiki tells him to look in the water to see his father. He only looks and sees his reflection, but after being told to look harder, he sees his late father in his own reflection.
This follows another fundamental topic in the story of a hero story. He sees the man he could be – a good, competent, brave king like his father was. It is a perfect example of a basic theme of a hero story.
After his father, who speaks to him from the clouds, tells him to take his place, he crosses the desert to face his greatest trial, his uncle Scar, and restore his kingdom.
If you look closely at this film, you can see through this lens most of Joseph Campbell's philosophy in history, what makes a hero. And the ideas were and are and will remain a role model for life. When you see your own story in this way, you are grateful for what you have done and learned and help your faith to advance.
I grew up with all the Rocky films and enjoyed every one of them. But the first is by far the greatest story. It wasn't an action film. It wasn't even really about boxing or training. It was about a man who had lost hope that the vision he once had for his life was now impossible.
At the beginning of the film, Rocky doesn't seem to have a chance to crawl out of the hole he put himself in. His mistakes were too many and his apathy too strong for change. However, as the film progresses, two main messages are revealed.
The first is, if you find something that you can use as a force to determine the direction of your life, believe that you haven't gone too far. For Rocky, he had both Adrian, his girlfriend, and the extremely random and remarkably unexpected offer to fight the world's heavyweight boxing champion.
Adrian was his first chance for some kind of redemption. After many requests, she finally agreed to go out with Rocky with a little pressure from her brother. She is extremely hesitant, but the two start a relationship.
And with the determination to have her in his life, he begins to clean up his life metaphorically and literally and even improve his appearance. He's not wasting the gift he sees in Adrian, and this could be the first time in his life that he ever did.
Afterwards, he met with a combat sponsor and offered a shot at the heavyweight title. He initially rejects this, but should think about how this is the chance of a lifetime.
You can see the conflict in Rocky's eyes as he listens in silence. He knows that he doesn't necessarily deserve the opportunity. But as he just did with Adrian, he takes a step into believing that this is something that he can use to change the direction of his life and start the fight.
The second message is to stay sober in thought and move forward after drastic changes. Not only will errors still occur, but they must also be expected and accepted.
And with this acceptance, you have to agree with yourself that you will still get up when you are beaten and you will walk the distance.
The night before his fight, Rocky Adrian says that he knows he will lose the fight, that he really has nothing to do with being in the same ring as the champion. But he tells her that he only wants to walk the distance with him.
He wants to end the fight without giving up without being knocked out. He may be put down, but he wants to get up and finish no matter how bad it is.
If you accept the ugliness of everything that needs to be done and what's inside of you, like Mickey, you can have a lightning bolt and shit thunder, says Rocky's trainer.
Did you know that Bill Murray created a training video to support his local gym?
Groundhog Day is definitely not an action film. It may be a comedy, but there's a lot more to it than that, things you can find between the lines. Bill Murray plays Phil Conners, a cynical weather man who runs the annual Groundhog Day event in a quiet little town in Pennsylvania.
He despises the job and hates the city. He plans to go back to town with the producer and cameraman after the shot, but has to stay the night because of a bad snowstorm, which the weatherman, ironically, didn't know would come.
The next day he wakes up and finds that he is reliving the same day. And to his horror, it continues. He goes to sleep every night and wakes up on the exact same day. Everyone else in town does the same thing every day and he is the only one who knows that this day will repeat itself.
It quickly drives him crazy. He starts executing every crazy impulse he has because there are no consequences. The next day he will wake up and everything he did will be deleted. He lives out fantasies, breaks the law, manipulates people and situations for his own entertainment and pleasure.
He soon becomes bitter, angry and hopeless that he will ever escape this time loop and try to kill himself. But the next morning he wakes up in the same bed on the same day. He gets really sadistic and starts killing himself in every possible way.
Finally, he sits down with the producer who came to town with him to tell the Groundhog story and tells her the truth about what he has experienced.
She believes him very surprisingly. He asks her what she would do if she had an eternity and she tells him that she would see it as a gift instead of a curse. A gift to make the best of it and make it the greatest possible good. Learn, experience, do good in the world, even if it is never noticed or remembered.
And he starts doing that every day. He learns languages and instruments. He reads great works of literature and poetry. He acquires skills that make him useful for everyone in every situation.
He even finally learns to love someone more than himself. He falls in love with Rita, the producer, and acts in selfless love. And then the magic is broken.
We can view every day negatively as another boring, dreary day. Or we can see every day as an opportunity to add more to ourselves and reduce the bad that we can spread in the world. And we should start now more urgently because we can't live a single day a thousand times
Cinderella Man is not just another boxing film, but a beautiful drama about the real story of James J. Braddock's depression struggles to take care of his family.
Braddock starts out as a promising boxing candidate. But after injuries and bad luck, he no longer offered fights and was forced to move away from boxing to work on the loading docks and make ends meet.
It gets worse and they can no longer pay to keep the heat up or buy enough food for all the children. His wife sends her children to her sister, who is in a better financial situation.
Braddock can't bear to pull his family apart, and to his own disgrace, he has to ask for money from promoters and coaches who admired him for his fighting skills. You can see the shame and restraint he feels in his eyes. It almost destroys him, but he knows he has to do everything to take care of his family.
After a while, he unexpectedly offered to fight. He immediately seizes the opportunity. He does it well and, to his surprise, gets more fights.
In one of the film's most moving scenes, Braddock's mouthpiece is knocked out by his opponent in the ring. Blood splatters on the canvas.
When Braddock regains his composure and gets his mouthpiece, the film recalls only a few months before the fight when his children were shivering under blankets in an apartment without heat and too little food.
He turns blood in his mouth and looks at the man standing opposite him and grins at him with a bloody mouth. He takes his mouthpiece and puts it back in his mouth, seemingly unmoved. His opponent, who thought he had gotten the best out of Braddock, now looks scared.
This physical pain was not for Braddock, the challenge was not real for him. He had gone through real challenges and experienced real pain. He never had a thought to give up because nothing was worse than seeing his children suffer.
Nothing could hurt him more than that thought, nothing could beat him harder. He knew he would get money for his family and that was all that mattered. The challenge of the man trying to hit him was nothing compared to the challenges he faced to care for and keep his family together. And that's the big truth.
Anyone who has a why to live can endure almost any how
– Friedrich Nietzsche
It's a wonderful life, probably a movie that nobody on this kind of list expects. However, if you look closely you will find that there is more to learn than being holy and happy at Christmas.
In the film, George Bailey takes over his father's small business after his death to ensure that his little brother can go to college, that staff is cared for, and that community is cared for by providing opportunities for people with few homes to own.
George does the best for everyone except himself. He takes on this role and stays there, although he has always dreamed of leaving the small town, traveling the world and creating beautiful things. As the film unfolds, George is seen to be bitter.
It boils to the point where he considers suicide when a large amount of money entrusted to his building and lending business is misplaced. If the money were not found, there would be a scandal, bankruptcy and he would most likely be thrown into prison.
He decides that his life is not worth more than his life insurance and takes his life so that his family receives this money and is at least looked after. In his eyes, this is the last act of sacrifice in his life.
When he wants to jump from a bridge into ice-cold water, his guardian angel sends him in human form, jumps first and screams for help. Like his whole life, George is suppressing his own interests for someone else. He dips in and pulls it out as the angel knew he would.
As they dry, George mentions to the angel that without him everyone would be better off. So the angel shows him a world in which he was never born. George is horrified by what he sees and recognizes all the things he was valiant for and the evil he prevented. And he saw a man's life affect so many others.
His lesson and history are unmistakable. His life was the masterpiece he wanted to create, what he wanted to build. And gratitude for what was around him was the key to realizing it. He focused first on where each tall man and tall woman should concentrate. He saw what needed immediate repair around him and got to work.
He was given the gift of really distancing himself from his own life and thinking about how he imagined influencing the world to see what he really needed to be thankful for.
We cannot receive this literal gift, but maybe we can be resourceful, think through and put on paper everything that has touched our lives, everything we have and everything that we are for others. Then maybe we can see our own artwork.
One of my roommates once asked me how I remember so many films. We flipped through the channels on a Saturday afternoon and I called out the movies on each channel.
Honestly, I was just lucky. They were all films that I had seen a few times. I've seen my share of films, but I'm not really a film fan. But films that I like, I take them to hell.
When I saw these films for the first time, I didn't understand how they gave me calm and clarity to keep moving towards the goals I'm aiming for. But the more I saw, the more I saw in it.
I saw my story, so I was connected to it. Well-written stories don't just tell the main character's record. They also reflect the history of all of humanity.
Regular progress in my physical growth has everything to do with character and endurance. I saw these films and remembered these stories because they reminded me of my own story.
The story in which I take on the same challenges and experience the same truth. Because their story is mine. And like her, I'll keep going, even if I can't see the reward. And that is itself the reward – the journey.