Three of Four Stars: Veni, Vidi, Vici

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She was born during the 1940s with the umbilical cord around her neck. It could have been a precursor to the life to come with obstacles that can be cut and conquered. The first year of life was treacherous for an infant considering whooping cough season was in the air and in her lungs. The years progressed and speech and language appeared to be quite a large obstacle by the age of four. Loved ones, teachers and classmates couldn’t understand what the main character was struggling to project from her young mouth. I expected tantrums for this duration of the film but none at all. Only signs of defeat, closeted anger and sadness appear on her countenance. Her raw emotions and numerous tears pull at the heartstrings of every viewer in the theatre. Just like in The Kings Speech, a speech therapist is hired.
In the film the main character develops health issues in childhood that persist throughout her life. The parents take her to a number of specialists for treatment and change their lifestyle completely to accommodate a “high maintenance” daughter as (she) the main character says at one point. Her health becomes something that rides in the background eventually. Distinct shadows while the memoir progresses.
What stands out the most to the audience is the happy go lucky childhood that should happen never begins for the main character. Health issues and obstacles that proceed shatter the happy go lucky portion of naive youth. Of course comedic breaks allow the viewers to take a deep easing breath every so often.
Incredibly the main character never falters to look at things with the best prognosis possible even though her personal reality is tinted gray. One tense scene appears with an oncologist/hematologist in the exam room with the family delivering results of a few blood tests. “You have (insert type of anemia) anemia and it has the potential to be deadly.”  And without a skip the main character says, “Okay. Let’s get it whipped into shape and fix it.”
Certain points in the film reminded me of My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult and the movie 50/50. The daily struggles of everyday life. The relentless fatigue of everything and wanting a “normal” life. The happiness. And the brief but dulling depression. Anyone who has ever struggled with themselves or their bodies will feel this character’s pain.
Somehow adulthood comes for the main character and so the film proceeds. Her life of college days with the anxiety and insomnia, a steep climb to a worthy career, finally marrying and having kids. But in the back of my mind was the life that could have been; the life with fewer and perhaps different obstacles and happier days.
The closing scene ends with a dark screen with words across:”Veni, vidi, vici
The audience watches the intimate mental frustration, happiness and unrelenting obstacles thrown at the main character throughout the the film.
I give this film three out of four stars.

3 thoughts on “Three of Four Stars: Veni, Vidi, Vici

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