I took my two children yesterday afternoon to the matinee to see Julie and Julia. They are 15 (boy) and 9 (girl) and they were bored. No other way to put it. They are troopers and didn’t start to get really restless until near the end. But the setting started them out on this path from the beginning. For starters, we didn’t arrive in the theater until about 2 minutes before the scheduled start time. That’s usually fine since there are always 15 minutes of previews. But the theater was packed and we ended up sitting in the 2nd row from the front. And unlike a lot of kids, mine HATE sitting that close to the screen. Plus in looking around for seats, they started noticing the audience. “They are all old women,” my son observed loudly, causing the 70 year old gray-hair next to him to give him an evil look.
I’ve got to say, though, that I could have cared less how bored they were. I LOVED this movie! Meryl Streep is an awesome Julia. She really is fearless in this movie and no whiner. I don’t know if Julia was this amazing in real life or if she was more like the rest of us–whiney, complaining, lazy, etc.–but she came across as this incredible woman who was really, truly lucky. Especially in love. I was jealous of her relationship with her husband and determined to be kinder to my own dear man.
When we got home I showed the 15 year-old my own battered copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking. He humored me, looking at it, Julie Powell’s book, and Amanda Hesser’s books (ok–I’m a cookbook freak, I know).
This morning I was browsing my collection looking for something to do with the big bowl of cherries going bad on my counter. I told Emma (the 9 year old) that we should see what Julia would do, and pulled out the “book.” Emma looked at me incredulously. “She isn’t real, mom,” Emma said with that certainty only children can muster. “She’s just a character in the movie.”
“Oh, dear child.” She was very real. And so I got to introduce someone to the amazing reality of Julia Child. She really has changed the world.