The complete story centers around Steve Martin’s character Neal Page who is trying to get home for Thanksgiving. His flight has been cancelled due to bad weather, so he decides on other means of transport. As well as bad luck, Neal is blessed with the presence of Del Griffith, Shower Curtain Ring Salesman and all-around blabbermouth, who is never short of advice, conversation, bad jokes, or company. And when he decides that he is going the same direction as Neal offers to give him a lift.
The greatness and pure genius of “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” is that, while it is uproariously hilarious, it also reveals great hurt and truth – unlike any comedy I have ever seen before or since. It really shows the dynamics of two opposites coming together through conflict and resolution.
Here is a clip from the movie:
In this scene especially we see certain elements of tenderness, heat, agony, conflict, and heartfelt emotion from these two comic genius‘. The argument between Neal and Del is the turning point in the film, and it is the first time that the audience realizes that they are in for more than they thought they were.
While watching this movie I’m reminded that in life we often encounter people who are so different from us (different personalities, likes and dislikes, habits that annoy the hell out of us) and we must continue to interact with them, live with them sometimes on a day-to-day basis. Maybe we didn’t plan it, maybe they just happened to come into our lives through some weird means. Maybe we have been forced to take care of a parent or someone we love has become disabled and we didn’t plan on it, “it just happened.”
I pose the question; Could it be possible that there are no mishaps in life and things are as they should be? I don’t just yet, know the answer to that question but it is worth meditating on.
We learn a valuable lesson in watching this movie; We will always have people who annoy us, difficult and challenging circumstances to overcome, heartache and much pain but what if we allow those things to shape and mold us? What if we allowed it to change our way of thinking and reacting wherein we become accepting, loving and kind in spite of any given situation.
I believe these are all lessons and if allowed can bring us to full maturity. That we become unmoved, undisturbed, unruffled by anything that comes our way.
I read this just today:
“Life has many lessons to teach us. Some of us may never get to travel the world as we would love to do. But for our spirits there are vast and beautiful realms in which we can always be traveling and exploring; and with ever-increasing capacity for enjoyment, discovering new beauties of Spiritual Truth.” (God Calling and God at Eventide)