Friday, June 11, 2010

(Love doesn't just go away) Letters to Juliet



I went to see Letter to Juliet today and absolutely loved it. It got me to wondering whether or not romantic comedies are based on true love stories, and the age old question of whether art imitates life or life, art. Regardless, I continue to breath them in, and continue to believe that like many of my favorite movies I'll find my own happily ever after amidst the girl-meets-boy, girl-loses-boy, girl-and-boy-find-everlastinglove-together-again. So, Letters to Juliet has quickly moved to the top of my list of favorites and I can't wait to experience it again (and again).

So, here we have this story of a 70-something year old British woman who met and fell in love with an Italian boy from the countryside fifty years ago when they were 15 years old. There was an opportunity for them to run off when they were teenagers, but, as she wrote in a letter to Juliet Capulet when she was still a teenager (because young ladies with woes of Love write to the statue of Juliet in Verona Italy), she never showed up to the locations where they were to meet and always questioned whether she had mistakenly lost the love of her life.

Fast forward fifty years and the main character of the movie, Sophie, finds the letter and responds back to the woman, Claire, who shows up with her grandson upon receiving the letter (written on behalf of Juliet) to see if she can find the man she lost and determine if their love abounds. As the charming tale unfolds, Claire, her grandson and Sophie uncover the beloved Lorenzo, and love-their love- in fact, has stood the test of time. Fifty years later, after marrying other spouses, having families, becoming widow and widower, and carrying on with their lives, Claire and Lorenzo reclaim their love for one another and commit to spending the rest of the golden years in wedded matrimony. Very happily ever after scenario, especially since Sophie and grandson Charlie end up together by the end of the movie as well.

I love this story, though, because I've often told the love of my life that I'll be an old lady, 78 years old, talking about how I sooo loved and adored this one young man back in my younger days in New York City. I've liked to believe that eventually I will get over the fact that we will not be together, but there is a part of me that cannot be convinced that I'll really get over the fact that I have to move on without him. Even as I purpose to.

So when I see stories like this, it brings hope. Not (NECESSARILY) hope that he'll come around and decide that he wants to share his life with me, but you know, it just gives ME hope.

And an added measure of happily ever after comes full circle as I learn that the two actors who played Claire and Lorenzo, Vanessa Redgrave and Franco Nero, actually began a love affair back in 1967, had a son in 1969, separated and got married to other significant others and had children, only to come back to the love they sewed with one another so many years ago when they married as seniors in 2006. A real life Claire and Lorenzo story. Not only that, but this story, their story reminded me even more of the returned love story of Old Van who I met last summer and who told me of a similar set of circumstances between him and the woman he was in love with back when they were teenagers in the 40s...

So.... (sigh) I'm not saying that I hope to be an old lady when I finally get the satisfaction of satisfied love.

I'm just sayin....

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