So when I was between the ages of 7-11 I would be enchanted with movies that involved death, aliens or senior citizens. I don’t know why those subjects stood out to me as some of my favorite movie themes. But as soon as I saw that those one or all themes were in a movie. I would stay glued to my screen and watch it many, many…..many times in a row.
One movie totally fit those themes mentioned above. I first saw “Defending your Life coming home from school and was no mood to start doing my homework. So my logical step was to turn on the TV instead and flip to a movie channel. That is when I first saw “Defending Your Life” (1991) directed by Albert Brooks. Starring Albert Brooks, Lee Grant, Rip Torn and Meryl Streep.
It centers around a man named Daniel Miller who buys a new BMW on his birthday. And while driving it while listening to Barbara Streisand. He gets distracted and drives right into a bus which instantly kills him and that is when the movie really begins!
In the course of the next couple of days Daniel stays in this like in between place.
While he is in a court like ordeal whether he can move forward on to the next stage or has to go back to earth as a new person. Conquering the fear he could not accomplish in his past life. While he is waiting for the decision he meets another person named Julia (played by Meryl Streep) and falls in love with her.
But is Daniel able to conquer his repetitive fear and join Julie. Or is his destined to go back to earth and have to relearn the same lesson over and over again?
I just re watched this movie over a decade long hiatus of not seeing it and it is just as endearing as the first 50 times I saw it. Although I didn’t realize this movie was directed and written by Albert Brooks and that he made a lot of funny and personal films. He is such an underrated writer! He is not laugh out funny in his writing but it is more like a funny in a smart way. Which I kind of appreciate more in watching a movie.
Fun fact about the movie: The vehicles that were used in transporting the people in the movie were older trams from Universal Studios.
You can watch this movie on HBO now app or you can rent it from Amazon.
Until next time!