Sarah Polley's fourth full length movie, Stories We Tell, pivots on the complexity of life. There might be some dubious lessons to take from it, but for the most part, we came away feeling far wiser. Here are the few things we learned.
1. The film's epigraph: "When you’re in the middle of a story, it isn’t a story at all...it’s only afterwards that it becomes anything like a story when you’re telling it to yourself, or someone else.” —Margaret Atwood.
2. “Love is so short, forgetting is so long.” —Pablo Neruda
3. The truth always comes out, no matter how long it takes.
4. When the truth comes out, it does change things. Unavoidable.
5. Every truth has multiple perspectives. Every story has multiple perspectives.
6. Don't assume you know it all.
7. Even if it hurts, trust that your stoic father can take it. In fact, telling him the truth might give him a new lease on life.
8. Turning a secret into a story can give that stoic father a chance to explore his feelings.
9. Even after decades of writer’s block, there’s a story out there for you to write.
10. Blood does not necessarily run thicker.
11. A father’s love can be transcendent.
12. People have an awesome capacity to forgive.
13. People have an awesome capacity to forget.
14. "Who cares about our [expletive] family? Every family has a story." We do! So long as it’s told well. (Thanks to Sarah Polley, it’s told beautifully.)
15. Humor helps a heavy story go ‘round.
16. Marriage is complex.
17. Life is complicated.