Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Ultimate Gift

I just watched a pretty good movie called THE ULTIMATE GIFT.  It was recommended to me by my pastor, and I purchased it several months ago.  I decided to watch it tonight.

At first, I was afraid it was going to be predictable, and the script was just a bit too hokey.  But then the movie took a turn and got very interesting.  As it went along, I became invested in the characters.  And while it was a fascinating exploration in human nature, I did have a problem with the way things were tied up at the end.  But the ultimate message is great.

James Garner stars as a very rich guy and grandfather who dies and leaves a large inheritance to his family.  They are all spoiled by their wealth, and are completely selfish.  Their arrogance is despicable, in fact, and they all fight with each other.  They expect to inherit a significant portion of Garner's estate, and when that doesn't happen, they're angry.  But one grandson, Jason, is targeted with perhaps improving himself and becoming worthy of the grandfather's inheritance, and he is tested.  He wants nothing to do with it or his grandfather, happy to live off of the trust that was set up after his father's death, but he becomes intrigued and begins to accept the "challenge".  After each test, or "gift", he is rewarded and given the next test.  As I mentioned, it is somewhat predictable, but there is a payoff, and it is in the Jason's relationship with a young girl that changes his life.  The tests, or gifts, are:
The Gift of Work
The Gift of Money
The Gift of Friends
The Gift of Learning
The Gift of Problems
The Gift of Family
The Gift of Laughter
The Gift of Dreams
The Gift of Giving
The Gift of Gratitude
The Gift of a Day
The Gift of Love
The movie has several emotional moments that impact the young man in incredible ways, but it has a nice ending.  My only issue with it is the way it uses money as a way of creating happiness.  Most people probably cannot identify with much of what the young man is dealing with, since he was born into a family of wealth and has never had to worry about money until he is tested.  Jason undergoes a somewhat realistic transformation.  But it still was just a bit too convenient to the plot, in my mind.  But it was entertaining.  Check it out, if you get the chance.


I had a lonely afternoon after taking my daughter up to visit my in-laws and join her grandmother for a "Ladies Tea" at their church.  I came home in a steady rain, and crashed with Faithful Pup Scout and watched the remainder of the NFL Draft.  I ended up snoozing on the couch and completely lost track of the time.  I woke up much too late to attend church, and was really disappointed.  I had been looking forward to Mark's Mother's Day message after receiving his announcement earlier this week about his topic.  Tomorrow, I had planned to go back to my in-laws church, where my mother-in-law is delivering the message (for Mother's Day), and to bring my daughter home after.  It should be fun.

Happy Mother's Day to all of the Moms out there... I hope you are given a wonderful day!

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