My guilty pleasure is action films. I’m fairly indiscriminate although I do think Under Siege with Steven Seigel may have been scrapping the barrel somewhat. I like the mindless moralising, the very clear demarcation between good and evil and the fact that you don’t get to witness the cleaning up after Arnie, Harrison or Tom has saved us.
My favourite without a doubt though is in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Having managed to outwit a number of challenges involving revolving blades and deathly drops Indie, our hero, is confronted by the seemingly impossible feat of a narrow cliff opening to a sheer drop of thousands of feet, and certain death.
There is this moment when he teeters on the edge, dust and stones dropping down to show us just how real the threat of instant death is. He can’t turn around (the baddies are hot on his heels) but ahead appears to be impossible. He is frozen. Stuck. Outwardly inactive yet internally his heart is pounding, his nerves crackling, his brain unstoppable. He is frightened of the unknown ahead. But the present state of fear, dilemma, indecision and uncertainty is worse. This has to be escaped. He has to move forward. He takes the step. He trusts in….something. And he shifts.
This image resonates with me now. I am at the point of walking out. Moving from security I am now teetering on the edge, uncomfortable, palpitating, sweating, before I find a new security, my new path. But I refuse to stay in a state of teetering, engulfed by fear.
What does teetering symbolise for me? Demon voices of I can't, I'm not good enough, they could have done it better.
Moving to I can, I am good enough, I will, and even, it might be good or even great.
Confronting the demons; out-shouting them; stepping into the unknown, and possibly an untimely death before the end of my film, is still preferable to immobilising frozen inaction.
And so I take one step…at a time…and with each one I get a new scene in my film.
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