And, that’s okay. Even more than okay, it’s expected. With that said, let’s indulge in a little bit of escapism — no, no, not running off to a far away land — but, in the form of fiction.
Manic pixie dream girl is a term made up by a film critic… please take the usage here with a grain of salt. Labels are meant for the back of tee shirts, not a way to categorize women, even tropes… but, since we can sort of relate to the term, we shall balance out those “quirky, eccentric” moments with some badass bravado on-screen:
1. If it seems like people are pushing you around.
If you’re having one of those days and feeling smaller than you are, then The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo may help press the re-set button. The hacker-turned-investigator, played by Noomi Rapace in the 2009 film adaptation of Stieg Larsson‘s novel, doesn’t let anyone take advantage of her… at least, not without consequences. She is no MPDG by any means. Sure, men may be drooling over her and wanting to know what makes her tick… but she is not one to reveal such things oh so easily. If the one film doesn’t do the trick, there are two follow-ups: The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.
2. If you’re feeling a little bit trapped.
There is something so hypnotic about Rosamund Pike as Amy Dunne in the 2014 film Gone Girl. More, specifically, her voice. She narrates the story, telling us how her seemingly picturesque life in NYC, with her fab husband somehow took a turn, landing her in the middle of Missouri. It might be the slowness of how she speaks or the tone… but, really, most likely, it’s her control. She found herself in an uncomfortable situation, to no fault of her own, but rather than dwelling or hosting a pity party… well, she made a plan and some changes. Needless to say, we don’t suggest following this as a how-to guide, but watching the story unfold on-screen might blow off some steam… like, whatever your sitch is, it’s not “frame your husband” and “kill your former lover” bad. Right? Gone Girl is also a film adaptation, based on Gillian Flynn‘s 2012 novel.
3. If you have the “I drank too much last night” guilts.
Yep, another film adaptation of a novel… because it’s just. that. good. The Girl on the Train, written by Paula Hawkins, was originally set in London, but when the film came out, the story moved to New York. While the location differs, the story remains the same. We follow Rachel (Emily Blunt) as she commutes back and forth between home and work, but she hasn’t told anyone that she lost her job months ago. She’s not alone on the train, though, she’s accompanied by her thoughts of loneliness and… DIY cocktail in a thermos. All-day drinking, while moving aimlessly about the city can result in a very bad and confusing evening. Add on to that, Rachel thinks she saw something dastardly from her train car… but, no one believes her because of her messy ways. If you had a night out that went later than planned, and you’re about to go on an apology tour, maybe hold off on pressing “send” on that mass email… it’s not all doom and gloom. At least, you’re not at the center of a murder investigation like “poor ol’ Rachel” here. Don’t feel too sorry for Rache, we think she might turn things around.
4. If you’re suffering from unrequited love.
Haven’t we all been there! If you haven’t, and, it’s just on this end, oh yeah, oh yeah, we just read about it — didn’t actually experience it (rejection that is). ;/ Now that that’s been cleared up, Audrey Tautou, who you may know better from Amélie, stars in the romantic, but not so much a comedy, film entitled He Loves Me… He Loves Me Not. The film is kind of amazing in the fact that, yes, it does seem the married doctor, the man she fancies, does in fact love her. But, we’re only seeing the story from her POV. When things are flipped around, it’s a completely different story. We don’t want to spoil anything for you, but we will say, if you’re crushing on someone and that person isn’t quite feeling the same way, there’s no reason to run off to SLAA (Sex and Love Addiction Anonymous)… just put your fixation on something else. Dunno, blogging?
5. If you’re concerned about where your career is going.
Funnily enough, Natalie Portman‘s character in Garden State is used as a go-to example of a MPDG, but in Black Swan, she portrays a very focused career woman. Portman takes on the role of Nina, a young woman who has spent most of her life training to be a professional ballerina. And, here we are, she’s made it. She just landed the lead role in a NYC production of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky‘s Swan Lake as the Queen Swan. It seems like work is getting to Nina, because she soon finds she can’t decipher between what’s real and what’s not. So, if things aren’t quite perfect at work for you, don’t beat yourself up — errr, kind of like Nina does in the film — because, stating the obvious, perfection is pretty impossible to achieve. And, like we see with Nina, it’s easy to burn out… maybe take a wee break, especially if you don’t think you need one.
Do you have a go-to movie to help turn around a not-so-great day?