Meaning and Means

I can understand, after seeing All The Money In The World, how Director Ridley Scott could reshoot the Kevin Spacey scenes, but I’m mixed after learning why and how.

This crime thriller movie, which is based upon John Pearson’s (1995) book Painfully Rich: The Outrageous Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Heirs of J. Paul Getty, narrates Getty’s refusal to pay the ransom demands of his grandson’s kidnappers in 1973. Getty relents in the move only after he is criticized by his employee Fletcher Chase (Mark Wahlberg), a former CIA operative, when his grandson’s severed ear is sent to a newspaper. Even so, Getty is only willing to pay the amount that he can claim as tax deductible, and he insists that his former daughter-in-law Gail Harris (Michelle Williams) must relinquish her custody rights of his grandchildren, whom he hardly knew.  Continue reading “Meaning and Means”

Just Around The Corner

Two movies have excited me since I saw them. The first is Lady Bird, which is a sweetly sad story about the love between a mother and a daughter who is searching for her identity. The other is Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, which is an unexpectedly inspiring story about the grit of a woman who refuses to succumb to tragedy. Continue reading “Just Around The Corner”

Mindful And More

I decided, after listening to an interview of Ellen Langer, to read more about her mindfulness research. Having done so, I certainly appreciate her insight into mindfulness generally, and for education specifically, but I’m skeptical about her proposed solutions.

Her research, Langer explains, focuses on the costs of mindlessness and the benefits, including greater control and more opportunities, of mindfulness. “Mindlessness,” she (2014) maintains, is “pervasive” and contributes to “virtually all of our problems” (xiii). Mindfulness, which as Langer understands it involves attention to context and variability, creates heightened awareness of and more control over contexts, as well as increased authenticity, new possibilities, and more hope and change (xviii, xxv-xxvi). Moreover, it can make work more like play and play as important as work, and it can lead to changes in the ways see others and ourselves, as well as our health, abilities, and even happiness (xxvi).   Continue reading “Mindful And More”