The theme today in Tuesday Couch Potatoes is Living the American Dream. There is only one movie that I could think is fit in today’s theme and that is “Spanglish” of Adam Sandler.
This is a touching story of a woman, full of character, with an idealistic vision for herself and her daughter, and a typical American family. The woman and daughter emigrate from Mexico seeking a better life in America, and discover that the family culture, at least in one American family, runs counter to the values that the woman holds dear. The woman starts working as a maid for the American family which is wrought with some typical American family dysfunction. The American mother is insensitive to the needs of her daughter and husband–she has been caught up in the “me” age of self improvement, addicted to high paced life of a working mother. The husband is a sensitive, caring, and thoughtful chef and father who has become estranged from his wife due to her emergent self obsession and insensitivity to the husband and daughter’s needs from a mother and wife. The stark contrast in cultures between the beautiful emotionally intelligent Mexican woman and the American family, whose matriarch is lacking in the same valuable characteristics present in the Mexican mother, provides learning opportunities and pivotal moments for all the characters. The daughters learn to appreciate each other’s cultures. The husband and Mexican woman discover in each other a special connection which transcends language barriers and allows the husband to see what he is missing in his marital relationship. And the daughter of the Mexican woman discovers that she appreciates her mother’s values more than she ever thought possible.