Saturday, May 3, 2008

Things We Lost in the Fire

This 2007 drama starts Halle Berry as Audrey, a woman who is devastated when her husband is killed while trying to help a woman in danger. When he was alive, her husband had continually tried to help Jerry (played by Benicio del Toro), his friend from childhood who is a heroin addict. Audrey seemed to think this was a lost cause, yet after her husband dies, she then tries to help Jerry and even has him live in a room adjacent to their garage. Jerry bonds with Audrey and Brian's children, a 10 year old girl and a 6 year old boy, and they quickly see him a father figure. Audrey and Jerry's bond is fragile and complex. She takes her anger out on him, yet at the same time seeks him out for comfort and wants to help him since this was something so important to her husband.

I think Berry and del Toro are outstanding in this. I like how this movie captures the raw emotions they struggle with. Berry really shows what grief can look like, and del Toro shows what's it's like to battle addiction.

One thing that was really powerful to me was del Toro in the film saying at the end, "One day at a time. One day at a time. One day at a time." Addicts need to constantly remember this. People grieving too need to remember this. And we all do I think--it's easy to get so caught up in the future and wondering what we're going to do or worrying about something. But that can be so overwhelming and cause us even more grief and stress. Jesus says in Matthew 6:34, "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." One day at a time.

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