Han Solo or Indiana Jones?

A few weeks ago we introduced the girls to “Star Wars: A New Hope”. They. Loved. It.

Every night for a week, maybe longer, we watched the movie. Agatha’s favorite is Darth Vader. When Darth Vader boards Princess Leia’s ship, Agatha laughs, “he’s so Scawy”. Ella’s favorite is Han Solo. He’s exciting.

A couple days ago while visiting friends, the girls played Lego Indiana Jones on the Wii. An interest was sparked.  “Indiana Jones and Raiders of the Lost Ark” was the the next step, though we did debate whether we might be better off starting with “The Last Crusade”. It’s my favorite.

On a slight aside, I forgot how scary the movie is, how graphic. Some people might laugh – after all compared to most movies we see now, Indiana Jones is neither scary, nor graphic. However, if you think back to when you were a kid, perhaps you also sat on the edge of your seat while watching. Now imagine you’re 2.5 or 4 years old and Beauty and The Beast is still slightly frightening.Indiana Jones ups the ante just a little.

The movie begins. We point out Indie to the girls, but for the first few minutes we really don’t see his face.the see his hat, his clothes.

When he returns to civilization the girls were momentarily confused by the mild mannered professor, but quickly figured out that he was the same man dodging traps int he beginning. Then Ella made a wonderful observation: “That’s Han Solo!”

For the first time I think she finally understood that the shows we watched, the movies, were completely pretend. She understood that the man, Harrison Ford, was just playing the character and wasn’t really either Han or Indie.

Even so, through out the movie the girls needed reassurance that it was all pretend. When a fight scene happened we’d tell them no one got hurt. When there was blood we’d point out all the things we could use to create realistic looking blood at home. We talked about our Halloween face paints.

At one point Indie grabs a white horse to chase the Nazi jeep. Ryan told the girls that in movies most good guys ride white horses and most bad guys ride black horses. Ella then pointed out that Gaston rides a black horse, and he’s a bad guy.

A part of me worried the movie was too scary, but the girls seem no worse for wear. In the end ALL the known bad guys are dead. They can’t hurt anyone anymore, and the good guys are alive and happy. After watching it the first time we thought we might hear a bad dream of some sort, but the girls slept well and awoke happy and eager to watch again.

Ella’s so excited about her discovery that people make movies and make up the stories. She’s creating her own story so she can make her own movie once we’re settled into the new house. In the mean time I think we’ll work on make-up and story lines to see what she can come up with.

Personally, I find it very exciting to see something as simple as a video game spark an interest that moves our girls in new directions, that expands their knowledge and experiences. Who knows, maybe she’ll be a great movie director when she gets older.



Filed under unschooling

2 responses to “Han Solo or Indiana Jones?

  1. awesome! i can’t wait to introduce my boys to star wars. and harrison ford is exciting 🙂

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