Sometimes my daughters ask me questions about what my favorite things are. When they ask about my favorite song, or my favorite book, or my favorite food, I usually give some sort of dodgy, non-committal answer because I like many songs, and many books, and too many types of food, but none really stands out above the rest. When it comes to movies, though, it’s another story altogether.
My favorite movie is–and shall probably always remain–Field of Dreams. Twenty-five years ago, I described it in the Northwestern Film Guide as “magical,” and I stand by that description today. It’s a concoction of love and family and baseball and, above all else, belief in dreams. Not everyone buys into these things, and that’s just fine. But I do, and I always will, and I’m happy that there are others who do, as well.
Yesterday, I was “having a catch”–as Ray Kinsella called it in the movie’s last scene–with my ten year-old daughter in my small backyard in Chicago. We were using a purple softball from a trip to New Orleans many years ago, and since I didn’t have a glove I was catching her throws barehanded. But none of this mattered to me.
What mattered was that this funny, smart, and lovely little girl, who I’ve watched grow from the time she was born during the All-Star game ten and a half years ago, was sharing a moment with me. I was doing a thing that I love, with a person that I love. Not a single thing was wrong with the world in that moment. I’ll do my best to keep that memory for as long as I walk this earth.
No other movie has ever moved me like Field of Dreams did. And when life imitated this art, as it did for me yesterday, the cosmic tumblers all clicked into place.