Sometimes I’m wrong about things. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’m admitting to it. I can be wrong. Once in a while. Not that often. Uhm, rarely.
It’s pretty hard to own your wrongness. But, I’m going to confess. I’m going to get it out in the open. I’m going to let the whole world know how incorrect I was in a preconceived assumption. Happily, I want to admit I’ve had a huge change of heart about Cuba Gooding, Jr.
Through the years, I’ve watched Cuba’s movies and enjoyed most of them. Over the past few years, I’ve lost track of him. With so many choices on cable, his movies were overlooked. I just kind of forgot about him.
Some of his movies in the past made me laugh, some made me cry, some just entertained the heck out of me. Up until a week ago, I had the image of Cuba Gooding, Jr., as a cute, kinda round, cuddly brown teddy bear with a sweet smile and an even sweeter voice. I had no idea the cute actor had morphed into a future Rambo.
I watched Cuba in “Hero Wanted” by chance. I was channel surfing and stumbled on this movie; I was entranced from the beginning. As unlikely an action figure Cuba Gooding, Jr., was in my mind, the premise of this choice of movie for him was even more unbelievable.
“Hero Wanted” is about an ordinary man who becomes an overnight hero after rescuing a little girl. This man, Liam Case, had lost his wife and unborn child in an automobile accident and he was simply existing – until he became the man of the hour when he risked his own life to save another.
The real story is what happened after his selfless act. Heroes are human and humans have flaws. Just because you performed a heroic act, it doesn’t mean you will be able to sustain that high. Liam Case realized this the hard way as the road he travels to grab another moment in the sun twists and turns. His search for redemption is the running theme.
I liked this movie and Cuba Gooding, Jr.’s steely-eyed acting. This was a Cuba I’d never seen before. I was expecting something totally different. Indeed, this was totally different. I initially judged a movie by its actor.
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The moral of my movie tale is you can’t always judge a book by its author. While it’s comforting to know what to expect when you pick up a book with a familiar name on the cover, it’s also exciting to discover there are more sides to your favorite author than you have known. The same holds true for writers: don’t become a pigeon in a hole; don’t let your genre typecast you. Take a deep breath and fly free.
Current enthusiasm is co-authoring at Rubicon Ranch