So last night I introduced my oldest daughter to one of the greats of my childhood, The Neverending Story. I hadn’t seen it in a while, and was worried that it was way better in the ol’ Nostalgia Vault than it would be in reality. It wouldn’t be the first time that I tried to show The Beansprout a movie from when I was her age and she didn’t care for it (she wasn’t a fan of Aladdin! Can you believe it?), so I was also worried about that.
Both fears, it turned out, were totally unfounded.
The movie holds up. It was absolutely still incredible, a perfectly magical piece of film-making. And The Beansprout was utterly captivated! She hid her eyes during scary parts (peeking just enough to not miss the action, of course), begged me to end the suspense of dramatic scenes by telling her that Atreyu would be okay, and gasping at realizations as they happened.
It was a fantastic experience, watching the movie together. I’m so glad she shares my love of movies, and I look forward to sharing so many more of these moments with her. My father always showed me his favorite movies when I was growing up, and I’m sure that played a huge role in my love of cinema. I remember one of my happiest moments as a young man was the first time I showed my dad a movie I loved that he’d never seen before, and he really liked it as well. It’s a great piece of bonding.
The Neverending Story is a great movie to draw these lessons from, since the whole point of the movie is how important stories and imagination are to us. I hope my kids hold on to that for as long as they possibly can.