In the last line of this film, you will hear a Black woman say, “Don’t talk to me unless you speak American.” What?
This film accurately depicts the randomness and chaos in life, along with fate and racism, maybe even destiny… as we make our feeble attempts to control it all. You decide. However, the film fails to address the root cause of racism, especially how racism is learned, many times inculcated since birth by many parents with little to no skills thereby perpetuating further hate and violence on this planet, along with all of its associated sadness and heartbreak. With scenes of love and transformation, it keeps the viewer wanting more. Now this…
Almost 4-decades ago, I met a man, randomly… so I thought. He taught me how to fly using his personal 1943, Beechcraft Staggerwing D-17s (a large, red biplane) and a Luscombe 8c, along with a couple of other aircraft. He was a retired American Airlines captain and his name was Jess E. Shryack (Godspeed, Captain Shryack).
I went on to become a professional pilot (among many other professions), which a kid from my background and economic status could never have dreamed possible. I recently attributed the encounter with Captain Jess “Cappy” Shryack to fate, not randomness… maybe even destiny? In fact, although not featured in this film, Captain Shryack also taught John Travolta to fly the Boeing-707… and Jess never even told me. I only discovered that fact after Cappy’s death in 2008.
Here’s the mind-blowing part of it all - At least it was for me. As I viewed the credits at the end of this film, I realized just how much fate, randomness, chaos, destiny, violence, love, true friends and good parenting were a significant determining factor in my life. How?
It turns out that the Boom Operator for this film (see Crew Credits at the end) is the youngest son of Captain Jess Shyrack (Joel Shryack)… the son of that random man that taught me to fly so many decades ago. This “randomness” has been verified and documented – I had forgotten the single time I so briefly met Joel almost 34 years ago in Justin, Texas at the Flying “S” Farm where I initially learned to fly airplanes.
There are no such things as coincidences. Know that! Pay attention to the random events, chaos and all the rest. It might just change your destiny, or fate, too. Stay close to God! – James M. Paton, Waco, Texas – a retired, albeit broken, professional pilot, etc… and like in the film… with a loser for a “brother."