September 29, 2009

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (...Or Green Eggs and Ham)

Twelve years ago, two ingenious young men graduated from Dartmouth College. Phil Lord '97 and Christopher Miller '97 were classic Dartmouth grads: smart, fun-loving and ready to make a difference in the world. Now, over a decade later, they have completed that goal... not as one would think by founding another Partners in Health (shoutout to President Jim Yong Kim) but rather by... animating my favorite children's book.

That's right. Phil and Chris decided to step up and provide the world with a movie version of "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs," (or, in Dartmouth-speak, "Cloudy with a Chance of Green Eggs and Ham,") also known as the great and long-enduring fable of the town of Chewandswallow. While this may not seem as altruistic as Jim Yong Kim's endeavors, I for one take my hat off to the two '97s for their creativity. "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs," besides being among the greatest children's stories ever written, possesses an important moral of which we should not lose sight.

In "Cloudy," (the movie version) an enterprising inventor creates a machine to end world hunger. The machine, long story short, goes nuts and ends up in the sky, causing incredible amounts of strangely edible weather. In the end the machine has to be destroyed (oops- plot spoiler- didn't hear it from me). What does this tell us? More accurately, what does this tell children around the world?

Hmm. Well, for one I'd assume that it's a bad idea to go around inventing stuff if it's going to end up having a mind of its own (this, several hundred B-class sci-fi A.I. movies have already shown us). For another thing, and the true moral of this story: Be careful of your actions, for the consequences can be far-reaching; and always be responsible for those actions. In the movie, Flint (the main character) ends up stopping his creation from destroying Chewandswallow.

"Cloudy" is a great story with a solid moral and is in all probability a great movie; and I'd just like to send some appreciation the way of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller for drawing attention to the inherent creativity and general awesomeness of Dartmouth alums.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous3:12 AM

    What if they hated fun?