Posted by blk1 on December 15, 2008
On Friday afternoon at 3:00 I sat in the Lowes movie theater on 68th St. and Broadway in New York City waiting for a movie. We got there early, really early to avoid the cold winds. We tried walking the 20 blocks from “the TREE” at Rockefeller Center, but there was no way.
So after a short walk around the theater lobby and the purchase of a small bag of popcorn, we had our pick of seats in an empty room but slowly, in the next 30 minutes, the theater filled. Did anyone else, know anyone in movie’s cast? Anyone else know Christopher Carley? I didn’t stand up to ask, but Tuvia assured me that the answer was probably NO!
I was nervous. Chris had been in a recent Robert Redford flick. A small part with a few lines and that was just fun to watch. In the last decade he had debuted on Broadway, he had been seen in lots of Verizon commercials, even an episode of the Sopranos, and all of that was exciting but this movie, Gran Torino, starring and directed by Clint Eastwood, now that was a nailbitter!
The movie opens in the church. Clint’s wife’s funeral and yes, Chris opens with the sermon and he looks young and full-faced, Spencer Tracey? And the movie begins and I am on the edge of my seat where I remain for the next two hours. It’s all good but for most of the 2 hours I am holding my breath, always wanting more of Chris until the last few scenes where I begin to relax and feel that Chris has been given an amazing opportunity.
I wonder how I would be feeling in Chris’ shoes at 30 years old working opposite CLINT EASTWOOD, who at 78 is starring, directing, composing the score and even singing the last tune of the film. And there’s Clint calling Chris “padre”, treating him like an adult. Chris, from my 8th grade English class…
It was a lot to take in and digest. Chris was great! The movie is important to be seen and with Clint as Walt, standing in cardboard form everywhere looking like a Dirty Harry from movies past, I’m sure this full theater is a preview of coming theater audiences when the film opens nationally on Christmas Day.
Chris has been sharing the process with me from the day he first read for the part. On Saturday morning we had a long talk about the film now that I could contribute to the conversation.
There’s life-long learning, there’s life-long s-t relationships. I have both!
What a profession, teaching!!!