July 4, 2016

There's Always A Reason Behind It All: 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)

Let's be honest for a second, we've all been judged before for something we did or did some judging ourselves. The thing is whether you were the one being judged or doing the judging, the truth of the matter is that there was probably a reason for the behavior or action in question. Sometimes the reason is really deep, reflecting some rooted emotional stuff, or the direct consequence of something else that happened, but either way there is a reason. Whether others understand or not. That's how it goes when we're working through our stuff on the path to growth and maturity, right? It's not always pretty. But, because we don't live in a world by ourselves there's always the inconvenience of spectators, some who are quick to judge and others who are a little more understanding and compassionate -- kudos to the latter in all of our lives for they are truly our saving grace in helping us to overcome whatever behavior or actions in question ... aka "our stuff". The movie 10 Things I Hate About You (1999) is a great reminder of the important life lesson: There's always a reason behind it all.

10 Things I Hate About You film.jpgIn the movie 10 Things I Hate About You (1999), high school senior Katarina "Kat" Stratford (Julia Stiles) couldn't be more opposite than her younger sister Bianca (Larisa Oleynik) with respect to social status. While Kat looks down upon the popular kids and everything they like and stand for, her sister Bianca wants nothing more than to be the very thing her sister despises. More than just sibling rivalry, there is a real reason why Kat is the way she is. But before we find out that reason, things get a bit more interesting when suave "bad boy" Patrick Verona (Heath Ledger) is paid to date the odd-ball older Stratford sister by another high school senior Joey Donner (Andrew Keegan), who is intent on pursuing younger Stratford sister Bianca. And while his money and possessions are impressive to Bianca, at the end of the day Bianca is really into another classmate, the sweet, new student Cameron James (Joseph Gordon-Levitt). Unfortunately, Donner's plan works, but then something else happens. The thing is Patrick and Kat really start to like each other, even though the whole thing started under false pretenses. But when Kat gets drunk at a party, everyone sees another side of the anti-everything mainstream and popular high school senior with an apparent axe to grind and more importantly we learn the reason behind her "I hate everyone" persona. The reason for it all, particularly her hatred for Joey, is the result of her past romantic relationship with him that turned sour. Kat had her heart broken by Joey and not only wanted to protect her sister from a similar fate, but it also made her distrustful as a result of her romantic let down. But thanks to Patrick, Kat suddenly had a reason to smile and be happy. Their budding relationship might have experienced a slight hiccup along the way, given the fact that he initially pursued her for money, but once that was out in the open and dealt with Kat and Patrick were able to pick up right where they left off. Bianca also got her own happy ending with Cameron too.

Although this movie is a cute voyeuristic journey back into high school politics, and let's not forget yet another demonstration of the talented, late Heath Ledger, it's also a great reminder that there's always a reason behind it all. Just like Kat in the movie, we've all likely been guilty of inexplicable behavior or actions, at least from someone else's viewpoint. The thing is there is always a rationale behind the things we do, to be honest. Whether we are aware of the reasoning behind it all at the time or not, there is one. It does, however, behoove us all to figure out why we do certain things because it is at the end of the day a reflection on us and those closest to us, in some instances. But first, let's all start by taking pause to understand that there's always a reason behind behavior, and actions, and as a result we should be less "judgy" and more "lovey". So, go forth and spread compassion knowing that nothing happens without a reason for it all, and because it's the decent thing to do. Peace.

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