Sunday, February 24, 2013

Safe Haven, Movie Review

Safe Haven, starring Julianne Hough, as Katie, Josh Duhamel, as Alex and many other “big names” in the film industry- along with some who are sure to have a career unfolding after this flick. Debuting in theaters all around the U.S., opening night Valentine’s Day, 2013 is without-a-doubt a chic-flick. But, don’t judge it so fast. While it does have familiar scenes and storylines from other films you may have seen, it’s a breath of fresh air in the chic-flick world. Giving actress, Julianne Hough a new and exciting reputation, as she has shared some smaller roles in her acting career, for example- a voice, in Gladiators of Rome- or an uncredited role in Harry Potters Sorcerer’s stone. I predict this will no longer be the case for Hough as she came to life in the film Save Haven, and this isn’t just my opinion. I was reading reviews for the film and many echoed the praises that Hough was incredible and for sure made the film worth seeing. Many have formed new opinions of this new actress. The movie begins with an exhilarating scene of a young woman frantically running through a neighborhood, barefoot and scared. Carrying only a plastic sac worth of goods to escape with- While you aren’t sure what she’s running from, you can’t help but feel sorry for the girl. She soon finds herself on a bus, headed far-far away. She is quiet and scared- keeping to herself. She finds herself enchanted by a little town, Southport, in North Carolina. The seagulls peacefully gliding over the ocean waves that come crashing in at the dock, close-knit community and a place of her own in the woods, where she feels hidden from the hustle- and-bustle of the busy town. Katie (Hough) soon finds herself making ties to the people and places of this small town. She begins working as a waitress at a local fish shack. She learns some people skills, makes friends and some money to support herself. One day, as she’s coming home from work she finds an unknown woman peering into her house- little does she know, this woman (Jo)- played by Cobie Smulders, will soon become her best friend, and so much more. Katie continues to make a life for herself and get cozy in her little house outside of town. Making it more like a home. Just when she finds herself falling deeply in love with Alex- played by Josh Duhamel, she is once again, haunted by her past. She finds that the man who she was running from at the beginning of the film is in town, and on a mission. He works with the police- though this badge and gun have been taken due to a new discovery of his drinking problem, and uses this position to make fake “wanted” signs of Katie. Labeling her as a murderer, in the first degree. Much to Katie’s dismay, these are found by Alex, who is in the police’s station- planning the annual firework show for the upcoming fourth of July celebration. After Katie frantically packs up and gets ready to “get out of town” and almost boards a Ferry to anywhere else- Alex comes to his senses and asks to know the real Katie- Or, Erin. After hearing of her dark past, being involved with the wrong manipulative and abusive alcoholic police officer, and husband- he vows to protect her from any harm and love her like she’s never been loved before. Furthermore, he promises “As long as you’re with me, you’re as safe as you could ever be,” So, Katie trusts him and goes to live with him, under his protection where she feels safe- and a part of a family again. The movie continues to unfold- leaving you on the edge of your seat in some places, as there is a dramatic scene- where Katie is forced to face her abusive husband, save Alexs’ daughter, Lexi- Played by Mimi Kirkland, save the house from disaster.. All-together, ridding her life from the dark past this alcoholic man has created. As always, there is a happy ending- but it’s more than just that, in the film Save Haven. There’s also an unexpected twist, which leaves you scratching your head- and re-thinking much of what you just saw. Overall, I found the movie Safe Haven much worth the watch. And a perfect movie date for Valentine’s Day. Many are sure to cry tears of both happiness and maybe even empathy, as the scenes are realistically portrayed, and show you how many may be living everyday in an abusive situation. It’s sure to touch your heart, and warm your soul.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Movin' on

I know this is random- and sounds even a little concieted. But I was talking about it with someone today- so to me, it seems completely relevant.
I've been through my fare-share of hard times, over the past couple years. While I don't claim to be completely out-of-the-woods, or perfect in any way- I will say that I'm rather proud of the progress I've made so far. .
I can tell you without any hesitation, mistakes I've made- things I reget- things I'd be embarrassed over, or try to deny- all things about myself and my past.
But I can't do any of those things. It took me awhile to realize that- but I finally have. And I've made some steps in the right direction, of moving on and becoming my own person. I'm still a bit of a push-over and sentimental, soft-hearted.. etc. Like I said, I need to do better. But I'm still much more independent and self-reliant than I once was. I have been, to some extent all of my life, being the oldest of 5 children- but now I'm learning to be more than just the oldest, and take care of everyone else- I'm learning to take care of myself as well. I spent far too long relying on others re-inforcement to make me feel better about all I had been through, or what I was feeling. I went to counseling to not get much back. Because I did a lot of talking- and not much acting. I'm so done with that. .
That's one of the several things I look back on, and ask myself ... "why, just why?" while many may think, given the things that I have been through- I've made some significant progress, in a timely manner- I still realize I could have experienced more joy, if I had only traded in all the bitterness I harbored. Along with feelings of regret, "what-ifs", sad memories, long sleepless nights...etc.

That ^ is exactly the point of this post. Not just to reflect on who I once was.. or all the things I want to change. Rather, things I don't know that I would change, if I had the power to, and the lessons I've learned from it.

Lately, scrolling down my news feed- I've been seeing a lot of "downer" posts. And it breaks my heart. I know I've had my fare-share of those. Another thing I look back on and ask myself "why" but being able to relate to them, doesn't make them any easier to read. I am not trying to down-play anyone's problems- or reprimand you. Your Facebook, your right.. if I don't like it, I can scroll on. Still, I want to give a shout-out, to all you downers. I want to give you this one thought and let you do as you wish with it.
Think of all the happiness you're robbing yourself- and taking unhappiness in exchange. Now I'm not the best at math, but that doesn't seem like a winning situation.. -1+1=0 think of the negattive comments/thoughts, as the negative number. You're just equaling zero. That's not a good place to be. I've made it a point to stop with all the negative statuses. At first, it was hard.. and though I dind't put it on Facebook, I probably verbalized it to someone.. then, It got easier.. it's been so long since I've posted something that would be a serious dark-cloud on someone's newsfeed.
That's something I'm proud of. One little action that isn't all that hard, when you think about it, can make a big difference. Made me feel better about myself, and keeps from bringing someone else down when they are spending time on Facebook.
I know, life "sucks" sometimes. But try to find some perspective. Perspective is SO wonderful. I think it's something we should all be abounding in.. it can make a huge difference as well. There are some things that I can understand you'd complain about (death...) others, like "Omg! it's raining.. I'm so bummed right now. My hair is going to be frizzy now. And it's school picture day" in a situation like that, think of it this way:
1. your mom/grandma.. whoever else will be getting (and paying for) your school pictures have more than likely seen you in some pretty not-so-pretty situations.. Flu, Chicken pocks- raccoon eyes after crying.. etc. They won't care. They will still pinch your cheeks and tell you you're precious.
2. when you're 40- you'll look back and wish frizzy hair was your only complaint about your looks..

I know, silly- but it really does pay off to be positive. I promise, it will be one of the best decisions you've ever made.
I'm not perfect- I can be negative, too. But I have learned to get a little better, and get up off the ground and start over. If you have a faulty foundation- you'll just fall over again. Don't crumble- or take the bait, all for the momentary "satisfaction" of complaining.
"Whatever is true, noble, lovely, above reproach- think on these things"
There's always something positive. I know it's hard to think of things sometimes. But I promise if you truly look for them and you ask for God's help- he will bring something/someone to mind. He doesn't want us to be miserable, anymore than we want to fall off a clift (suicidal thoughts don't count)..

It took me awhile to realize just how blessed I really am. You may be in the same spot. I've always heard that when you're close to the subject, it seems so much worse than it really is. And it's true. As long as I dwell on a problem and worry over it, it will continue to be a problem.
It's not until I take a step back and realize things are smaller from a farther distance, and not as bad as I may have made them out to be... that I can also see what's surrounding that "huge" thing that was devestating me. The good things in life. Small blessings or ways that God works in my life.
I owe a lot of people things.. things I can never repay them for- or say thank-you enough for. And I have a lot to be grateful for/ look forward to.
You do too- if you'll only look for them.. sometimes you'll find that they've been right in front of you, this whole time.
Life is what you make it,
Things are only as bad as you make them seem,
Objects in mirror are closer than they appear... wait, what?

Make a consious effort, until it becomes a habit.. habits are hard to break- so make good ones.
and always breathe.. count to ten. Don't get mad over things that aren't worth your time. Choose your battles wisely.
Know you're loved, valuable, created for a purpose.. beautiful.