I’ve always relished the opportunity to get together with grandkids during school breaks. If the weather is good, we hike, bike or stroll around the neighborhood. Okay, maybe I’m the only one strolling, but being outside is important to all of us. If the weather is bad…BONUS for me. I go into entertainment mode. I love sharing and watching a movie with the grandkids. Some of the time, the grandkids are thrilled. Other times, they wondered what planet I just came from.

To Kill a Mockingbird

Recently, we got together during a school break, and I lined up the couches to create a theater atmosphere in our family room. Unfortunately, I can’t even come close to creating a DreamLounger effect, but I do think I could be a consultant for the Marcus Corporation. Why was I working so hard on the atmosphere? I’m not sure, but maybe it was because I wanted them to like the movie as much as I did.

The first adult movie we ever watched as a group was To Kill A Mockingbird. My choice was not without objection, even though they had no idea what the movie was about. Once they saw the movie was in black and white, they began to boo me. I’m glad I didn’t serve popcorn, or they would have thrown it at me. I’m not sure if technicolor is still a word used in the industry, but it was definitely what the kids wanted.

I tried with all my might to encourage them to accept all black and white movies on the basis of the story, not on the lack of technicolor. I wasn’t totally successful with my words, but I did have the remote, so I won the battle. We watched the movie. There was silence during the entire movie. The kids were enthralled and mesmerized by the plot, the acting and the lessons they took away. Following the movie, we had a great discussion about segregation, racism, hope and dreams. I was pleased.

Young Frankenstein

On another “Grandma Marcus” afternoon, I decided to stick with a black and white movie, but go with a bit of humor. I really thought I could win them over to the black and white genre or maybe I enjoy being booed.

I chose Young Frankenstein, one of my all-time favorites. This was the first PG-13 movie I showed them. I didn’t ask for permission from their mothers about showing the movie with the PG-13 rating. Why? I don’t know. Maybe I was being defiant (a skill I learned from them…or taught them). Don’t get me wrong, I’m not done with Disney movies or superhero movies, but I thought the grandkids would change their minds about black and white movies if they saw a comedy.

When I started the movie, they booed me, but I remained in control of the remote! They laughed a lot and enjoyed the plays-on-words, the sarcasm and the sophomoric humor. Maybe the sophomoric humor was the key. It aligns with my sense of humor as well.

When the movie ended, we did not have the intellectual conversation we had after we watched To Kill A Mockingbird. We talked about some of our favorite parts of the movie, which included the Frau Blücher horse whinny, “Putting on the Ritz” dance and the “Put the candle back!” scene. However, the scene we still play out today is the favorite of all: the dart game whit, whit, whit sounds. (My apologies to those who have never seen Young Frankenstein.)

In years to come, my grandkids may not remember who Gregory Peck was or what character he played in To Kill A Mockingbird. And that’s okay. They may still think black and white movies are boring. And that’s okay. But I do hope my grandkids remember that it wasn’t just the movies, but the time we spent together that was important. And that’s great!

Bryan Kids’ Club Invites You to the Movies

Kick back, relax, and enjoy Disney’s new movie Moana with us on Saturday, December 3 at Marcus Edgewood Cinema. Choose from three different showtimes. Tickets are only $2/person. Pre-register online to reserve your seats and pay at the event.

Nancy Becker

Nancy Becker

Grandkids & Grandparents

I have four grandchildren ages 14-17. In some ways, I’m a very typical grandma, always proud of everything the kids do and wanting to help support them in whatever way I can. In other ways, I’m not very typical. My goal as a blogger is to share my thoughts and experiences that I think are funny and meaningful as I adventure through grandmahood.

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