A few weeks ago, I purchased a book at the local bookstore that I’d never seen before. The title was so intriguing, that I decided I had to take it home.
The book is “Cinematherapy, The Girl’s Guide to Movies for Every Mood.” I suspected this was going to be funny and fun. It takes a lighthearted look at how films (and watching films) can change or support our moods at times, but is clearly intended to be taken seriously.
The authors, Nancy Peske and Beverly West, collaborated almost twenty years ago on this volume intended to help women find the perfect (or at least a good) movie to watch when the choice can affect the mood either positively or negatively. They make a good point. Watching “Terms of Endearment,” they said, can be very helpful for a woman struggling with “mother issues.” But watching that same movie before going to a particularly stressful doctor’s appointment can make one paranoid if not downright terrified. The two authors have an excellent perspective. I feel exactly the same way about Steel Magnolias.
At any rate, these two ladies also differ in their movie favorites, so they ended up with quite an eclectic compilation of movies. They also seemed to have a good grasp on the various “moods” that we female folk can have or experience. The book covered emotional times that you might expect (given the title), such as PMS, mother issues, father issues, and the ever popular “romance” issues. They even gave a couple of different romantic scenarios with wise insights. Movies we watch when we are in the “happily-ever-after” mood are dramatically different from those we would choose when in the “dysfunctional romance” frame of mind.
Peske and West even covered “moods” such as girls behaving badly, boys behaving badly, working girl blues, and wanting greener pastures. I’m sure you’ve already been thinking about movies you would pick for some — if not all — of these moods. I know when I saw the chapter titles, I almost immediately thought of a movie I’d watch.
Their recommendation for seeking greener pastures was “Out of Africa.” I know that their book is a little out of date, and that they leaned heavily on classics (which I love), but for me, I’d pick “Legally Blonde” in this category. It never fails to make me think that a gal can achieve anything she puts her mind to!
In the category of working girl blues, they chose “Nine to Five” and “Working Girl” in their top picks. I can’t agree more. Both are terrific, and have that message that gals can do anything they put their minds to.
Bad Hair Days yielded the recommendations of “Marty” (one of my favorites), “While You Were Sleeping,” and “My Fair Lady.” These are also good reminders that a gal can do anything she puts her mind to….
I’m sensing a pattern, are you? For me, any movie that helps my mood includes a vat of buttered popcorn, too. If I put my mind to it, I can get some! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sue is a retired public servant who volunteers at the Hospice store (For All Seasons) in Troy and teaches part-time at Urbana University. She keeps busy taking care of husband, house, and pets. She and her husband have an adult son who lives in Troy.