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  • Writer's pictureShannon Heibler

Sabrina (1995)

I saw this movie in theaters with my mom. It has seen me through 26 years of heartache, bad crushes, bad haircuts, and self discovery. It hits a little different every time I watch it and I cherish it deeply. I love this version more than the Audrey Hepburn and a little less than the play (the ending of which is much more satisfying).

It was fun watching it with Ben, who had never seen it before. It touched me to see him instantly respond to Sabrina, how cringey she starts out, how loveable she is, how much she grows, how she deserves better. Most of my life, I loved Linus and wanted to find a Linus of my own to fix but watching now... YIKES. Big yikes. I dearly wish that Sabrina didn't (SPOILER) end up with Linus, who in many ways is a bigger man child than David. Sabrina deserves Sabrina and nothing less.

Ben was surprised by the number of "truth bombs" in this unassuming little romance. I regularly think about Irene saying, "You seem embarrassed by loneliness. By being lonely. It is only a place to start." I have often described myself as having been born lonely. It made me feel broken or lacking most my life. It's something I'm still examining in myself and working on but this movie is always a good reminder that it's just a state of being. It's not an albatross around my neck.

I didn't realize until this viewing what a cornucopia of beloved character actresses this movie is. Nancy Marchand! DANA IVEY! Character Actress Margot Martindale!! BABY J. SMITH-CAMERON! So much love. And Julia Ormand is a treasure. She had enormous metaphorical shoes to fill in this role and she does it with such elegance. One of my very favorite things about this film is the kindness and grace it grants to the character of Sabrina. She's so relatable and awkward in her obsession and even though everyone around her is horrified for (not by) her, they love and accept her where she is. She's not embarrassing them (or if she is, that's not the point), they just want her to understand her worth. They want her to shine for her own sake and that's beautiful.

This is my favorite John Williams score. Far and Away comes close, but this one. My goodness. The piano. An instrument that rarely gets highlighted like this in a Williams score and it's his preferred instrument. (Angela's Ashes is stellar in this way also.) He also wrote the songs and I'm hard pressed to think of a better song about unrequited love than "How Can I Remember".

Digital photography.


-The plan was to reacquaint myself with my digital camera (not my phone!) by going for walks on my lunch break and getting comfy with it again. I also started journaling again (not for public consumption!). Between a hectic week at work and a depressive episode, it didn't totally go to plan. But I took almost 100 photos and that's more than I've done in years. I used to really enjoy photography.

-The hardest parts of this (besides relearning everything I forgot about f-stops and shutter speeds) were spending time with myself (something I loathe doing even when I'm not depressed) and feeling like an absolute tool walking around with a camera. I remember there used to be so many photographers wandering around campus at any given moment but I didn't see any, even around the art school. It's so silly but boy was I self conscious.

-November 15, 2021 marks the one year anniversary (yay!) of Making and Movies and spending some time with myself like this was the best possible celebration. Ultimately this project has been so much about getting in touch with myself and writing nonsense in a journal and quietly appreciating my place in the world was a beautiful little gift.

-I was going to sell my camera but after this, I think I'll keep it. I'm not any phenomenal talent with it but I like it, if only as a different way to see the world.

-AND I cut my hair. I was due for a haircut but seeing that adorable chop job on Julia Ormond made me finally make an appointment.

I hope you have a lovely, gentle, and kind week. Tomorrow we're watching Monsters, Inc so I need to start hydrating now in order to avoid my usual headache I get from crying too hard at Pixar movies.

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