5 scenes when the movie ‘Beaches’ makes me cry every time
I have a strict rule I have lived by since I was a young girl: If you cry, I cry with you. It doesn’t matter if it’s happy tears, devastated tears, peeling onion tears, complete stranger tears or fictional characters tears. No one should have to cry alone and you can count on me to bring the Kleenex. Except when I forget.
I never wear my emotions on my sleeve. Wait. Let me rephrase that for those of you who know me well and are laughing hysterically at that last sentence. I never wear my emotions on just my sleeve. I pretty much take a bath in them and walk around flinging my feelings at anyone who will listen. This can be exhausting, but it’s something I’ve learned to live with.
You can imagine the sheer torture that runs through my brain when I flip through the channels and discover the movie Beaches is on. This happens a lot more often than one would assume, because the 1988 classic is ALWAYS ON TV.
It’s on the Oxygen channel right now. I can feel it.
Beaches has a strange hold on me. I once had what some may call (read: my sister) an unnatural obsession with the soundtrack. It could fix any problem in my young adolescent life. Need a good laugh? Look no further than “Otto Titsling.” Have a hankering to belt a song in your car? May I suggest “I’ve Still Got My Health.” Feeling mellow? Sink into the cool vibe of Bette Midler’s version of “Under the Boardwalk” and thank me later.
Watching the movie is an entire different experience.
I will sit in anticipation, butt clenched, waiting for it to wreak havoc on my nervous system, even if it’s way past my bed time. Ten minutes left? I’ll watch. Little Mayim Bialik running around on the boardwalk? I’ll watch. I may roll my eyes and make fun of myself for watching for the millionth time, but I’ll watch.
And here is where I cry every time:
The entire bar scene where a pregnant Hillary comes back into CC’s life used to get me, but now I pretty much hold it together until they start decorating the nursery. Sweet Hillary who is quiet and proper is determined to be a strong, single mother. And her independent, spirited friend jumps in to help her every step of the way. Layer a soothing version of “Baby Mine” in the background, and I’m a goner. Dumbo can do that to a person. I don’t care who you are.
Hillary frantically searches boxes, looking for a picture of her mother’s hands. This is the moment she finally comes to terms with the fact that she is not going to ever get a new heart and she has to face the rest of her life watching the top half of the hourglass hold fewer and fewer granules of sand. Life is precious and fleeting. It’s completely natural for her to hate her circumstances, but it’s very important for her to keep living while there is still life to live.
Hillary convinces CC to take her to the beach house, knowing that the end is near. While playing a game of cards, CC casually mentions, “I know everything there is to know about you and my memory is long. Very, very long.” CC bounces away into the house, and a fragile Hillary quietly responds, “I’m counting on it.” Tears. Jerking.
Wind Beneath My Wings
Stupid YouTube is so awesome.
The last minutes of the movie showcase CC singing “Glory of Love” as Victoria looks on from backstage. CC takes her hand and begins telling the story of how she first met Hillary when she was smoking under the boardwalk. The scene cuts to young Hillary and young CC goofing around in a photo booth, with a lovely and equally haunting sound bite:
Hillary: Be sure to keep in touch CC, okay?
CC: Well sure. We’re friends, aren’t we?
You may have met your own Hillary when you were a small girl in hot pink fringe scampering around Atlantic City. You may have met your CC at a college party when no one else seemed to notice you were there. This dear friend plays an important role in our lives. We cherish her friendship. We crack a little at her brutal honesty. She knows what we need, when we need it. And we thank the Lord for the day she walked into our lives, because when the going gets tough, we can count on her faith, wisdom, strength, compassion and ability to make comfort food without calories.
And as cheesy as it may sound, you completely understand what it means to have this beloved friend as the wind beneath your wings. If you’re not sitting next to her right now, go give her a call and tell her. Just phrase it differently because she’ll probably make fun of you for being a dork.