Good afternoon, Peeps, how goes it?
So, what grounds you when you’re having your pity party?
The movie we watch when we need to pull our heads out of our asses is Rory O’Shea was Here. It stars a young James McAvoy, one of two celebrities Joey’d leave me for if she got the chance. McAvoy plays Rory, a 20-something with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, who’s dad moves him to a home for crips. Rory’s a free-spirit, so he ain’t having it, and fight’s it from the get-go with the introduction, “Rory O'Shea. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Besides the full vocal range, I have the use of two fingers of my right hand, sufficient for self-propulsion and self-abuse. You can shake me hand or kiss me arse - but don't expect me to reciprocate.”
Now, people that have known me for a while, know this is totally me. It was my best friend, Noe, before me, and who had Duchenne. He taught me everything I know. Now, you know why this movie means so much to me. Almost everything that happens in the movie, I’ve either experienced or saw in some way or form.
Anyhoo, at the home, Rory meets Michael, who was brilliant played by Steven Robertson. Michael has spastic Cerebral Palsy that affects his speech, so most people can’t understand him…then, Rory shows up. Michael is Rory’s polar-opposite. The home’s the only place Michael’s known. By the way, Joey has CP. While we were watching Rory the first time, Joey said I was her Rory, because, although she’d done some stuff, she hadn’t been as outgoing and adventurous as I had. She knew my past with Noe.
The thing that got us was how well acted McAvoy and Robertson played their roles. Now, both these actors aren’t crips by any means; although, McAvoy’s played Professor X in the First Class series of the X-Men franchise for almost a decade. McAvoy said he spent at least 12 hours in his chair getting the part down. And, Robertson, dude’s a fucking genius to get that spasticity down from the way he held his arms, and especially in one shower scene, where we get to see how he held his legs…then, the slur of his speech, OMFG!
Rory tries to play nice at the home while coming up with schemes to spice life up like taking funds from the home fundraiser to the pub to get him and Michael drinks and chicks, “It's funding for the needs of the disabled. I'm disabled and I need a drink.”
So, Rory’s forever scheming how to get out of the home, and get an Independent Living Allowance, but he’s always turned down, because they don’t see him mature enough with a concrete plan to live in the real world. He knows he’s on borrowed time, so this has to get done…like yesterday. That’s where Michael comes into play. Not being as brash, he gets the Allowance, regardless of his speech impediment…Rory’s his interpreter.
They spend their time going around Dublin looking for a crip pad in a montage that had Joey and I rolling, because in one scene, a realtor takes them to an apartment that has steps to the front door. Rory watches him go up the steps, and asks, “There's a bit of a problem. Can you guess what it is?” They also need to hire a provider to help care for them, which they find (Siobhan played by Romola Garai) at the market when Rory sees a pair of legs that he likes. Then, they settle into a place to live their life. Joey and I’ve tried to do the joint provider thing…it don’t work.
These sequences are exquisite as they depict crip life perfectly from figuring things out to the screw ups like Michael brushing his teeth himself and dropping said toothbrush countless times on the floor to him figuring how to do his hair spiked like Rory’s. Then, life gets real as feelings come into play, and dynamics have to change.
The end comes inevitably, which I could relate to (see Morality’s a Bitch!). And, like Forest Gump says, “That’s all I’m gonna say about that.”
After we saw Rory the first time, we raved to everybody about...even buying the DVD and making the fam watch it. Mom said it was a sight to see my dad and BIL sharing a box of tissue on the couch in silence. Seriously though, if you want a glimpse into our world check it out…but, have tissues.
So, after that long ass explanation of our grounding movie, sound off to share what grounds you from your pity party.