I recently sat down to watch Lee Daniels’ The Butler. I had mixed feelings about going to see it at the movie theatre because it was close to the holidays and people were calling it the “male version” of the movie, The Help. (which I didn’t see either) Well, I fixed a light lunch and sat down to watch this movie and it wasn’t about him being butler at all! At least not from my interpretation.
I found the movie to be rich in storytelling about spiritual and political growth. It showed the development of one expressing the political and humanitarian side of fighing for freedom. The movie also displayed parents who allowed their children to actualize themselves. There was a development of friends into family relationships and I truly appreciated the love stories. With all of the fully developed story lines and superb acting, I didn’t see the focus being about his occupation as a butler at all. Perhaps it’s just my poetic eye, but being a butler was only the analogy to set a location.
This is also close to my perception of the movie, “12 Years a Slave. People cried, “not another slave movie!” But it wasn’t about him being a slave. It was about family, perservance, courage and reciprocity. Another fully developed story with superb acting that should be seen.
If you are a writer, The Butler is a wonderful example of story crafting. Check it out! (or watch it again with a new perspective)