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Posts Tagged ‘Robin Williams’

What Dreams May Come, directed by Vincent Ward, won an Oscar in 1998 for its expansive and impressive visual vistas depicting heaven.  I’ve watched this movie many times and saw it again last night.  It’s a compelling movie and asks all the hard questions and Heaven and Hell.  It leaves a lot of questions unanswered which is intentional.

Chris Nielsen (Robin Williams), a doctor, with his artist wife Annie (Annabella Sciorra) suffered through the loss of their children, who were killed in a car accident. Although Annie’s all-consuming depression nearly destroyed their marriage, the couple rebuilt their relationship and are now living out a comfortable middle age.

Stopping one night to help a motorist in a wreck, Chris is hit by a car and killed. At first confused about where he is, Chris meets Albert (Cuba Gooding Jr.), an Angel guide who helps him to realise he’s passed away and that he must move on to Heaven. After trying with  limited success to communicate with the devastated Annie, Chris moves on and discovers Heaven can become whatever he visualises.

Chris’s creates his paradise as the paintings of his wife, and he awaits the day when Annie will eventually join him. Tragedy strikes again when Annie commits suicide and goes to Hell. Although it is rarely done, Chris insists on traveling there, risking his eternal soul to save the woman he loves. Accompanied part of the way by Albert and another guide called The Tracker (Max von Sydow), Chris finally reaches Annie in Hell, and must convince her of the truth in order to release her from her dark prison, before he himself is also trapped with no way out.

This movie is one of my all time favourites.  I like the idea of Heaven being a colourful landscape , that’s my kind of paradise. I also believe that hell is a place without God.  Again the movie is pretty accurate to my idea of hell.  It also reminds me of how we can paint our own heaven or hell on earth.  It’s our choice which world we live in.

May you this week reflect on where you are living, Heaven may just be a place on Earth.  It may not be a destination as many would believe.  If the Kingdom of God is within you, and God has written eternity on your heart, what does this tell us about Heaven?

 

Colour your Heaven

If you asked me to paint my heaven,
I’d choose colours of red, yellow and blue,
And create a vast vivid landscape,
Of a place I somehow knew.

If you asked me to play my heaven,
I’d use the key of G.
With a minor fall, and a major lift,
To sustain life in harmony.

If you asked my to write my heaven,
I’d use words of depth and rhyme,
To draw you in to my Maker’s world,
Where space departs from time.

If you asked me to share my heaven,
I’d speak the greatest story ever told,
Of Jesus who died for me and you,
So we could walk the streets of gold.

So what colour is your heaven?
What is the best musical key?
To write and paint your heaven,
For those who need to see?

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This week America and the world is mourning the death of actor and comedic genius Robin Williams. The Hollywood icon died on Monday at his California home at the age of 63.

Williams burst onto the scene in the late 1970s, playing an alien on the sitcom “Mork and Mindy.” He would go on to become an Oscar-winning actor that could make us all smile – and cry. President Barack Obama described Williams as “one of a kind” and someone who “ended up touching every element in the human spirit.”

In his personal life, Williams struggled with depression and substance abuse addiction and talked openly about it over the years. Just last month, he announced he was returning to a 12-step treatment program.

“When a person stops an addictive behavior and there are symptoms of traumatic stress, the risk of suicide increases significantly,” Regent University counseling professor Sherry Todd told CBN News

During Robin Williams’ 2001 appearance on Inside the Actors Studio, James Lipton closed the questionnaire portion of the program — as he does with every guest — with the following: “If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say at the pearly gates?”

Robin Williams delivered an answer that was Robin Williams in a nutshell: quick, funny, and razor-sharp on the surface, with plenty of complexity layered below. He reeled off three punchlines in a matter of seconds, and buried an easy-to-overlook nugget of poignancy right in the middle: “It would be nice to know that there’s laughter”. I think we can be certain of this.

Williams leaves behind his wife and three children – and something for the fans: four upcoming movies.

Of course, like many, I never knew Robin Williams. I knew of him, and the impact of his life and work. He brought life and laughter to millions. A true inspiration. Here’s my small tribute to a great man.

Eternal Hope

Behind the iron maskimage
Of laughter etched in sorrow
Success betrayed by hurt
For today but not tomorrow

Behind the pose of laughter
Defending wounds that bind
Generous beyond belief
A loving spirit in kind

Behind the spotlight
Shadows with their silent wings
Beat their drums
Yet death has lost its sting

For hope is all eternal
The chains that bound your life
In this place of comic rest
A beautiful mind freed from strife

Your presence graced our world
You finished the race you set
Rest in peace and freedom
Of you we won’t forget

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