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Jonathan Livingston Seagull

A movie directed by Hall Bartlett

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THE ODYSSEY OF LOVE AND PAIN

  • May 3, 2000
Rating:
+5
Pros: all a++++++

Cons: not enough people have shared this experience!!!!!!

And here begins our story - the sky, the sea, the flock This whimsical and heart wrenching story of Jonathan Livingston Seagull isn't quite as it appears. Based on the premise of Jonathan, a proud little bird always looking elsewhere - the future, the goal, the glory. To be the best - better than the best - to outshadow and overcome all in his flock.

Eyes on the heavens, always striving to be better than the next guy. Perceived by the elders of the flock as cocky, pushy, spirited, outcast - Jonathan has a goal.

He will prove to all there is no better than he. He will fly faster, higher, farther - he needs no one - he is the best, he will always be the best - he has no equals, he needs no equals, he is his own man (bird, lol). Jonathan is searching for what we all are, that piece of life and heaven that is all ours and through this little saga, you are transpired into a world you face every day. You reach for him to meet his goals and transcend into the dreams, peace and glory we all seek every day in our lives.

Jonathan rushes from the flock to be his own man - to prove his dreams - always unobtainable but always in sight - can he succeed? Will he fail? Will he fall? Will he ever need anyone? Soaring into the skies, out of his league, getting caught in catastrophe and storms, lost, lonely, afraid, dying..........seeking, always seeking, he finds his dreams just out of sight.

Battered, beaten, near death - Jonathan looks to the skies and begs for his answers ...Lost...in a painted sky where the clouds are hung for the poets eye, you may find him, if you may find him..there...on a distant shore by the wings of dreams through an open door, you may know him, if you may....BE...as a page that aches for a word that speaks for a theme that is timeless and the one God may make for your day....SEE.....as the song in search of the voice that is silent.....and the one God will make for your way........and we dance to a whispered voice overheard by the soul overtook by the heart, you may know it if you may know it.....while the sand would become the stone which begat the spark turned into living bone, holy, holy.... BE......as a page that aches for the word that speaks for a theme that is timeless and the one God will make for your day..SEE....as a song in search of a voice that is silent and the one God will make for your way..(Neil Diamond) .

Dear Father we dream, we dream, we dream, while we may, who are we to need, we need, we need, while we wait...while we wait........Dear Father, we dream.......we dream, while we may, while we may....(Neil Diamond)

Looking into his heart, facing unplausible loneliness Jonathan finds his true peace and glory but alas is alone. There is no one for him to share these joys with....

Glorious and victorious, Jonathan finds his heart and his goals - they have always been there for him but his foolish spirit has kept them hidden ....Lonely looking sky, lonely sky, lonely looking sky, being lonely makes you wonder why makes you wonder why lonely looking sky, lonely looking sky, lonely looking sky.....lonely looking night lonely night lonely looking night being lonely never made it right never made it right, lonely looking night lonely looking night,. Lonely looking night......sleep, we sleep......and we may dream, while we may, dream.......we dream, for we may wake one more day, one more day, glory looking day, glory day glory looking day and in its glory told in a simple way behold it if you may glory looking day.....glory looking day...ahhhh.....lonely looking sky..(Neil Diamond)

The journey begins, an odyssey of time and spirit. Jonathan once again alone, cast from the flock his family and friends because of his nature to out perform and out do all others. Alone and afraid, never to know love and kindness again, Jonathan looks to the heavens and into his heart to find the true spirit of God and love.

In his loneliness he discovers it is not the hunt, the glory, the conquest but the end result. It is family, friends, love .... Jonathan returns once again to those he loves to share his glory. He has transcended through purity and has obtained a peace few others know, man or beast.

Returning as a teacher this time and not a peacock, he is once again shunned by the flock elders who do not understand that he has truly found his full peace. In return for his attempts, he is able to rally the flock around him and in the end Jonathan his victorious and no longer truly alone. ....Skybird make your sail and every heart will know of the tale ...and head for the farthest shore...song bird make your tune or none may sing it just as you do....and make your song be heard......look at the way I glide part of the winds lazy tide sweetly how it seems right at the heart of each of your silver wings..skybird, skybird....night bird find your way or none may know it just as your may....seek out your harbor of light ...let your song be heard......rally each heart at the sight of your silver wings....sky bird.....(Neil Diamond)

Do not assume this is just a cutie pie animated little ditty about a lonely bird. Look into the story, feel the music - a beautiful Hal Bartlett film released in 1973 (yea - so what, I am old) encapsulates the fear and trepidation that is in our all hearts and minds. Full of pain and love it opens your heart onto itself and makes you look into your goals again. Have you set them too high or too low - are they unobtainable or are they unreasonable. Do you expect too much of yourself or not enough, or too much of others or too little.

A fantastic musical score written and performed by Neil Diamond transcends your spirit into a world of dreams and thoughts you never thought you could obtain. After seeing Neil in concert last year again, I had to find this movie. Not only for myself but also for a girl at work that had never gloried in this epic but was a Diamond fan as well (and she is only 24 so don't beat me up anymore darn it). After 4 months I was able to find it at Media Play and Amazon.

Although there is a mildly threatening scene between gulls and their nemesis in this story, it is indeed good family fare (unbelievable from me, I know) and the music alone is worth the visit. I included a few of the lyrics in this review because I felt they needed to tie things together but hearing them and the poignant voice of Mr. Diamond, the pain, is haunting. GRAB A HANKIE!!!!





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Susi Dawson ()
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About this movie

Wiki

Based on the best-seller by Richard Bach (who sued the production for not following his book) about Jonathan, an existential seagull in search of the meaning of life. Score by Neil Diamond (who sued the production for replacing some of his music). Director Ovady Julber claimed the film plagiarized his film "La Mer." A troubled production that fell flat. Academy Award Nominations: 2, including Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing.
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Details

Cast: Juliet Mills
Director: Hall Bartlett
Release Date: 1973
MPAA Rating: G
DVD Release Date: Paramount Home Entertainment (October 02, 2007)
Runtime: 1hr 39min
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