The hardest part of getting old is wondering what went wrong. The second hardest part is remembering the dreams you used to have.
For me it’s constantly wondering what would have happened if I’d stayed in the profession I loved for longer, if the relationship I was so invested in had worked out, even down to little things (that may have become big things) like what would have happened if I’d left the house 10 minutes before I did.
It’s remembering the way I used to be, how thin I used to be, how none of the dreams I had have come true.
And it is all done while sipping lukewarm Fosters because it was a substitution in a Tesco delivery and I didn’t have the energy to refuse it because I wanted something, anything (even a 4% “golden nectar”) to numb the pain of the (hopefully) final part of lockdown.
An old colleague recently described hitting his head against the wall just to feel something, just to feel something through the first two months of the year. That seems very apt.
Does everyone feel this way? Does everyone mourn the life they used to have too much so they aren’t invested in the one they have?
I’m asking about them in particular because they used to both be sought after actors. He was in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and she was in American Pie 2, and Van Wilder: Party Liaison amongst others.
Neither were the highest Hollywood royalty but both earned a decent amount and would be recognised in the street.
But now (by now I mean in 2018) they are in a movie about a talking hedgehog. It’s a film I had been meaning to feature in Fiskal Policy for some time but other events got in the way.
Maybe you can count this as an Easter film to watch with your children while you regret not travelling more before you had them. Maybe it’s the feel good movie everyone needs right now to get us through the end of days.
It is about a talking hedgehog after all so what could possibly go wrong?
I’m aware it is very low budget (and that has been well-documented by writers who get paid for what they do) but it doesn’t have the so bad it’s good elements of Sharknado and its’ sequels (another Tara Reid picture).
The villians of the piece (played by Mike T. Tremblay and Earnest Lee) are would-be hapless criminals/ termite extermination/ gutter cleaning experts who try to inject a sense of Chuckle Brothers-style slapstick comedy into proceedings but fail.
If I was still at the age where a talking hedgehog would be adorable then I think I’d be bored rather than amused by their antics.
While they were trying to put the funny into the piece I was probably overthinking the subtext behind the mother (played by Colleen Gentry). She is seemingly always cooking breakfast and is rarely seen somewhere other than the kitchen.
The ex-film student in me would either argue that this plot device shows the importance of her role in keeping the family together as she is the one who keeps it together a lot more than her husband when the family pets and flowers start talking, or it is a lazy trope and is anti-feminist in character.
But that hyperbole would get me too far away from the fact that her scenes made me think of either a French listening exercise where pupils would have to listen to the language and work out what she was making for breakfast – or the beginning of a porn film before the plumber arrives.
And, refreshingly, the film realises.
Yes, in a world where the animals mouths don’t move because that would have cost too much in special effects (or even just effects) and the boom microphone is visible in at least one scene, the best bit of the film is that it realises what it is.
I’m trying to do this without spoilers because at least one of you (maybe the G-Pie) may decide to watch the movie. But if you aren’t planning to sit through the entire 76 minutes, then just by checking out the last 10 then you will see what I mean.
But, if you do watch it you’ll realise the shot of Andy on the horse on the promo poster is not taken from anywhere in the movie.
Maybe they had aspirations of getting enough of a special effects budget to do such a thing. Maybe it’s in the director’s cut. Maybe they just did it on Photoshop and thought it looked good for the poster.
It’s similar to Instagram culture where everyone is trying to make their life look better than it is and you can feel inferior if you judge yourself according to other people’s manufactured existences.
Andy the talking hedgehog never rode on a horse, just like your friend didn’t post any photos of their holiday (remember them?) until day six because they got really sunburned on day two but didn’t want to show this reality.
Maybe they are waiting for the call from Quentin Tarantino to give them the role that will change their life and be the one they are remembered for. But until that call comes (if it ever does) they are still following the dream of acting in some form or other.
They are out there toiling away making their own path in life and that is the best anyone can do. Even if your dreams have died and your memories of fun times are fading you can still have an existence with highs and lows.
Make different dreams, make them achievable and make them last. Most importantly, try not to be so hard on yourself and –
Stay safe for another week!