One of my favorite movies to watch is Family Weekend, A story about Emily (Olesya Rulin), a competitive jump roping champion, who feels neglected by her eclectic family. As a result, she decides to take her parents hostage in their own home to force them to change their ways and become a real family. In addition to the story line, all of the details in the film are what really make it a one of kind piece that I will always find fun, entertaining and beautifully shot.
I wanted to write a list of ten reasons why I love this film. I decided to do some film photography while I was watching so that I could better capture the moments that help portray these points. The movie is currently on Netflix, and I urge anyone to take the time and check this film out if you haven't already. So let's get to the list.
1. Emily's unique talent/passion: Competitive Jump Roping
Emily has a very interesting talent, which would be jump roping in place at high speeds. She takes it very seriously, which often times alienates her from her peers. But to her credit, she is the best at what she does by far.
She wins every competition, but never has any family there to support her. So in the end, victory doesn't really mean much when there is no one to share it with.
2. Beautiful art
I adored the collection of artwork featured in the film. Art was everywhere and very inspiring. The family seems to live a pretty comfortable lifestyle as the mother is a corporate hound fighting for the vice president seat at whatever corporation she works for.
I enjoyed the smaller individual pieces behind Emily in this shot because it inspires me to create a gallery wall similar to this in my living room. It's fun, abstract and each piece is different.
I have a certain fondness for large sized canvases that are bold with color and presence. These are the details that really make a film special to me. I love beautifully designed settings and backgrounds. It gives a true feel of the world of the characters and pulls you in on a more personal level.
3. She actually holds her parents hostage for the greater good of the family
Emily calls for a family dinner where she drugs her parents, using something she found in her mother's medicine cabinet.
During that time, she was able to get them tied up in preparation for the execution of her master plan.
4. Emily is amazingly organized and methodical
A huge reason why I adore Emily and this film is because of her personality. She is very bright, organized and systematic.
Before going through with her plan, she had to create it first, which she did by typing out a document on her computer, printing it out and assembling it all neatly in a folder.
Her plan was inspired from a trip she took to her little brother's room in which she learned about how the animal kingdom works from a show that was playing in his room.
All of these events took place within a limited time frame, as she had a state competition to attend the very next day. The point of this whole situation was to get them to turn a new leaf and support her on her most important day.
I can also be a post it note maniac, or an index card crazy person. I see this as a work of art. Things need to be organized as much as possible sometimes, to maintain clarity and direction. This is just greatness.
5. Beautiful home
Films that take place in beautiful homes are always a treat for me. It's such a good time living in someone else's world for the duration of the movie, and when that world takes place in a magnificently designed home, it makes the experience that much better.
This was a beautiful shot of the back of the house, Lots of windows and wonderful architecture.
6. Emily's Adorable Style
Emily's style was super cute and prep with her own touch. I was very fond of a lot of the pieces she wore throughout the film. I would wear some of her apparel in a heartbeat.
7. Awesome little sister who's a natural born actress
Her little sister Lucy is a before-her-time 9 year old who acts out as characters from movies she really has no business seeing at her age. But it works for some strange reason. Super super super talented young lady. The character she is now is Iris from Taxi Driver.
A Clockwork Orange.
8. Dad is an free spirited artist, mother is a super corporate beast, grandmother is a hippie, older brother is an aspiring filmmaker.
His problem is that he needs to make more time for his kids, even though he is the stay at home parent. His art is his whole life, well in addition to sleeping.
A super busy corporate mom who brings home all the money and is not involved in her children's lives at all. Too busy on her Blackberry discussing business.
This is the older brother who desperately tries to get his father's attention through his lifestyle choices and his film creations.
9. Cool little brother who is a zoologist genius and has a tape recorder of a memory
This kid knows an endless amount of facts concerning the animal world. His passion is very apparent when you walk into his bedroom to see it filled with cages of all kinds.
Another awesome thing about her little brother, Mickey, is that he can recite entire conversations from memory as if he were a tape recorder. It's amazing. Please watch this clip. You must.
10. The moral of the story
"Some people are lucky enough to find their true passion, and sometimes it can consume them. That's okay because their passion makes them feel like something. Like somebody. Sometimes its the only thing that keeps them moving..." -Emily
As for me, my passions keep me moving, keep me striving towards something so that I am not consumed by the past and the pain that comes along with some of the things that have happened to me in my life. Stay busy, stay passionate, stay focused, stay happy, but also make time for those you love, and enjoy the moments that surround you.