Last night as a family we went and saw the new James Bond movie, Spectre. A couple of years ago we all went and watched Skyfall, so it was kind of a family tradition that our time together over this holiday made possible.
I don't get to many movies these days, so when I do it's a treat. After watching it, I now remember how much better seeing a movie is in the theater than watching it at home. For me, it is two and a half hours of escapism.
In the opening scene, at one point James Bond is fighting a villain inside a flying helicopter. When he finally defeats him, he then moves on to fight with the pilot. As they wrestle and punch, the copter zigs, zags and even flies upside down for a bit.
And in the midst of all of this action, there I am.
An hour before I was feeding the dog and hanging Christmas lights. Now, I was in an upside down helicopter over Mexico City. Not physically, of course, but in a wild fantasy sort of sense. The movie transported me out of my dull, mundanity into the world of espionage and danger.
Not too much later in the movie came the requisite car chase scene. In this one, Bond is in his bulletproof Aston Martin being chased down tight alleys and along river banks. The walls of the theater were thundering with engine revs and crunching with the shift in gears. It was intense and exhilarating.
And there I was again.
Twenty five minutes earlier I was driving five miles over the speed limit in my minivan. (Most days in the van, I'd rather take a bullet from a villain than be seen driving in it, but that's a different story.) But then and there, I was a passenger on the precipice of death.
In the final scene Bond and his Bond girl drive a boat out from underneath an exploding building and proceed into a high speed chase with a helicopter. As they near it, he shoots his small handgun with unbelievable accuracy and she drives the boat.
Yep, there I was again.
That is the beauty of movies for me. Total and complete escapism.
It happened with Narnia, where I was taken to the snowy land of the White Witch.
It happened in Star Wars where I was flying through the tight maze of the Death Star or walking among the Ewoks in their village.
It even happened in Casablanca where I was transported in both place and time.
And so while I realized that I have a quiet, safe life, it sure felt good to dive into one so different and foreign and exciting to me. It transported me to 7 foreign countries in two and a half hours.
And for me, it was time well spent.