Last night we watched Happy Feet on a movies on demand channel. Or I should say, Ella watched the first 15 minutes (asking me millions of questions: Mum, where is his mummy? Mum, when is the naughty seal going to come back?), then got distracted and annoyed me for another 15 minutes and ended up having such a massive tantrum triggered by being overtired (she hadn’t had a nap) that I sent her to bed without books or songs and watched the rest of the movie by myself.
I must be the only adult who CRIED with Happy Feet! I felt like such an idiot trying to hold back the tears.
[For those of you who have not seen Happy Feet, it’s about humans stealing the penguins’ fish, one of the penguins – an outcast because he cannot sing, but he’s a hell of a dancer – ends up in a zoo and attracts worldwide attention through his dancing, gets send back home with a tracking device and gets his whole clan to dance for the global media to see, which causes a high-level debate on conservation issues and eventually results in the declaration of a no-fishing zone around their habitat.]
Update: We watched most of the movie together again today and I heard her explain the message to her dad afterwards. About the people taking the penguins’ fish and that they had to stop taking the fish so the penguins could eat fish and would not be hungry. Aw!
The same day I explained to Ella in the car what John Butler’s ‘Treat Yo Mama With Respect’ song was really about. I told her that it’s about being nice to the ‘world’ and not hurting trees and not making the ocean and the rivers dirty. And that we shouldn’t hurt or break trees because they clean the air and if all the trees would die then the air would be really dirty. I choked up when I heard her explain it back to me.
Explaining “big issues” like this to Ella or even just watching/listening/reading kids’ movies/songs/books about idealistic topics like these (looking after the environment and sharing our wealth mainly) make me so incredibly emotional. It’s just the thought that if everyone would teach their kids these things and really try to explain the logic behind it, the world could become a much better place. Naive, I know, but it really gives me goose bumps!