Not Trumping The Storks
The film is wonderfully not about traditional families
Warner Bros. Pictures
I hate to be the one adding to the doom and gloom predictions (and encouraging the massive exodus of Americans to Canada) in the wake of the 2016 USA Election results. So I won’t.
What I will say is, recently the movie Storks came out. Have you seen it?
The film is wonderfully not about traditional families – or at least, does not assume all families are created in the same way. In fact, parents are not responsible for the creation of their families at all: storks are.
As a family of two moms taking our son to see the film, it was a gleeful relief to finally see a movie (wonderfully unlike The Good Dinosaur) not assuming all families are created and structured the same way.
Even better, the movie focuses on showing the supremely all-encompassing delight a baby brings any mix of people –as if to argue that this is the real essence of family (not the capacity to create.)
The film lacks a suggestion of procreation completely. OK, you could argue with me there: the girl who finds her family and they all look like her – is a direct contradiction of that. But I give them the deus ex machina on that one – there was no other way to quickly end that plot.
More to the point, that familiar story line is immediately followed by all kinds of parents crying – triumphing – to finally receive their “bundle” after so many years of wishing and hoping for a child to join their family. Both two women and two men couples are featured and even though it’s a cartoon, the emotion is palpable. It’s a direct parallel and nod to the many LGBTIQ couples who have waited so long to finally create their families. One might argue that the film’s release was a timely factor in the emotion the audience feels in this final scene: the recent passing of gay marriage in 50 states in the USA made this outcome seem more possible – realistic even.
Of course not all the audience responds this way. In looking up whether the film would be suitable for our four and a half year old, we unfortunately stumbled upon the many horrors of online commenters (Trump voters?).
Certainly in Canada, my Facebooking friends were so busy commenting on the USA Election Results and the crash of their Immigration website (suggesting a barrage of Americans looking to flee to their country) we missed that Australia took a giant step towards Gay Marriage yesterday.
So I say: hold on. Stay the line. Yes the fear that Trump is Hitler 2.0 (and I’m not even trying to be flippant) is more terrifyingly possible now.
But as we take lessons from history, which is creating the knots in our stomachs, shouldn’t we also give just as much attention to what we know about now? For example, all these people (and there are hundreds involved) made this movie – knowing it would be pleasing to an audience of hundreds of thousands.
Although the electoral system doesn't allow Hillary to come to power – most of America still voted for her. And the USA got itself to a space where it did pass gay marriage in 50 states.
It’s foolhardy to say the world doesn’t have to change – it always does. Most of us were relieved to see Obama as a leader because he seemed to epitomize (speaking for the gay community) the face of change we wanted.
It is imperative that Americans stick together, argue and criticize and articulate the world they want even more loudly than Hillary and Trump were during the last 18 months.
Most of all, the challenge before us is to make sure we rise to the occasion when we have to stand up, instead of ducking our heads in fear of the wrath of a bully before us.
About the Author:
Connect with Alysha on Twitter @alyshadominico