WARNING: READING THIS CAN DISCLOSE TMI ABOUT THE FOLLOWING MOVIE! DON'T READ IF YOU LIKE SURPRISE ENDINGS!
In the ESL classes I teach, we use popular fiction as reading matter for our reading/writing courses. We pick best sellers, and old classics to read and ultimately write about. The themes that these pieces of literature provide are fairly easy to understand, and give a novice English speaker a chance to discuss what they already know and what they have learned from reading.
This semester one of the books I chose was "The Five People You Meet in Heaven" by Mitch Albom. This has the added benefit of being a book that is also turned into a movie, so we can watch after we read. Since it is getting close to the end of the semester, and we won't have time to finish this book, I'm going to show the movie to my students as a "reward" on Friday. Popcorn and drinks and a good movie, should be a good time...
OR WILL IT BE?
I've learned the hard way in the past to never show a movie without previewing it. This one is too long, so I have to find some points that can be skipped so we can see the end. So I previewed it last night.
I had chosen this book in 2006, and started to read it to prepare for the semester. That year, the topic was too close to the heart for me, and I thought, "How am I ever going to get through this book?" especially since my sweetie had just "gone to heaven" that summer. Luckily, I didn't have to finish it, because the class was cancelled. This year, I figured I'd be able to handle the topic this year, after all it was 2 years later.
Reading it wasn't bad, but I only got to the third person Eddie met in heaven. So the movie blindsided me when it came to the 4th person. You see, the 4th person was Eddie's wife, and she died of the same thing my husband died of. That started the waterworks in earnest, which had begun to spring a leak during the third person episode where Eddie learned to forgive!
So I spent the last hour of watching as a blubbering, sobbing, Kleenex soaking fool. I guess if you want a recommendation about a good story, you have my seal of approval. The pile of soggy Kleenex near my easy chair can give my two thumbs up on this movie.
Now, how am I going to be able to show it to my students without making a fool of myself?