Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Still Leaving it to Beaver

posted by Nell Minow

The Washington Post has a poignant tribute to Leave It to Beaver from a man who found his favorite childhood show unexpectedly comforting when he was struggling with serious illness.

“Leave It to Beaver” rejuvenates me. I need its gentle tone and mild-manneredness, its absence of deep drama and complicated characters, and its simple, predictable, formulaic story lines, in which nothing seems to have lasting consequence. And I need Beaver’s innocence, his youthful ability to trust and believe completely, his state of confused wonderment (“Gee whiz, Dad, has it always been hard on kids being kids?”), and his wholly natural, small-boy approach to life. When my cancer refuses to slow down for sentiment, “Beaver” helps me feel embraced by life, not tossed around by it….

It’s easy to lose one’s perspective in the suffocating web of cancer. I don’t know if watching “Leave It to Beaver” is pathetic or liberating. But for now, I’ve put my faith in the idea that these stories from my childhood — realistic or not — possess the kind of redemptive power referred to by William Maxwell. “Stories,” he wrote, “can save us.” Such is the reality; such is the hope.

Appreciation for one of “Beaver’s” stars comes from an even more surprising place. The Louvre, with one of the world’s great art collections, the place that houses the Mona Lisa, will show a sculpture from Tony Dow, who played Beaver’s older brother, Wally.

“Of course, I’m really proud of ‘Leave It to Beaver’ and my directing career in television,” said Dow. “Those are great accomplishments. I’m really proud of them, but this is interesting because I don’t think they know anything about that at the Louvre.”

Still, I suspect Dow and his fellow castmates will be most fondly remembered for their 1950′s television show. It does hold up remarkably well, not just for the way it evokes a more innocent time, but because it evokes the worldview of a child. Sweet but not sugary, it is a family classic.



Previous Posts

Trailer: Chef
Jon Favreau follows his big-budget special effects movies ("Iron Man," "Cowboys and Aliens") with a return to his small, indie roots ("Swingers") as director/writer/star of the scrumptious-looking "Chef."  (WARNING: Some strong language) [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tP6SE65F-h4[/yout

posted 8:00:51am Apr. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Have a Blessed Easter: Movies for the Family
My gallery of Easter movies includes "Ben Hur," several different movie versions of the life of Jesus, a couple of choices just for kids, and a classic musical named for a classic song, Irving Berlin's "Easter Parade." There's something for every family celebrating this weekend. [youtube]https://

posted 8:00:44am Apr. 19, 2014 | read full post »

A Dramatic Commercial for TNT
I love this commercial for TNT! [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIkPeZKP-d4[/youtube]

posted 8:33:40am Apr. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Movie Stingers: Scenes After the Credits
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRJ38y4Jn6k[/youtube] Ferris Bueller had one.  Marvel superhero movies sometimes have two.  When did it become a thing to have a scene after the credits (sometimes called a stinger)? New York Magazine's Vulture column has the history of these extended

posted 8:00:47am Apr. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Fading Gigolo
John Turturro wrote, directed, and stars in "Fading Gigolo," a bittersweet meditation on the ways we seek and hide from intimacy, sometimes at the same time. Turturro plays Fioravante, a florist who works part-time for Murray (Woody Allen), the third-generation proprietor of a used and rare books

posted 9:24:32pm Apr. 17, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.