the best heritage

Following the very sad death of Alan Rickman, my Facebook news feed filled up with tributes to, and articles about, the man. I read them with a more tender heart than those for David Bowie. Although Bowie had been a voice in my life since I was old enough to notice music, and I was sad about his loss, there was something about Alan Rickman's passing which drew my sorrow more intensely. Perhaps because of certain performances which I really sympathised with, such as in Truly Madly Deeply and Sense and Sensibility (or the annual delight of Die Hard). There was a vulnerable humanity in them which made me feel I could be vulnerable, human, and still a character worth knowing.




What I noticed about the tributes and comments was that they were not really about Alan Rickman's career successes. Instead, people who knew him talked about what an extraordinarily lovely person he was. And journalists excerpted those quotes, uplifted them, celebrated them. It seemed to me that, while there were some headlines about "our favourite villain," most people were honouring the goodness of Alan, the decency, generosity, and endless kindnesses.

Sometimes I think this world is concerned only with money and marketing. But it's heartening to see (albeit under very sad circumstances) that what so many people admire most is good character and niceness. We may praise cleverness, skill, success, but we sincerely marvel at goodness.





I noticed too that there is a longing for that kind of goodness in our own lives. People wrote things like, I wish he'd been my friend ... and I wish I was more like him ...

It reminds me of people I've known who have died, leaving no great heritage of fame or fortune - only an influence on my life that encourages me to be a better person, and reminds me every day what real goodness can look like, and that it can exist in the smallest, most ordinary heart. That to me is more special than any movie performance.


8 comments:

  1. Tender words for a lovely actor!

    ReplyDelete
  2. My heart feels the same, only a few days before this sad news I watched his wonderful film "the snow cake"
    Hugs, Patricia

    ReplyDelete
  3. So true and I also feel it reminds us to appreciate the goodness in the people we still have. A sad week of losses.xx

    ReplyDelete
  4. So true and I also feel it reminds us to appreciate the goodness in the people we still have. A sad week of losses.xx

    ReplyDelete
  5. Your last point is so important to appreciate. I love your photos today. xoxo Su

    ReplyDelete
  6. I was only just watching a film 'A little chaos' with Alan Rickman in it the other day so it did come as quite a shock. My favourite film of his was definitely Truly Madly Deeply and when he played the sherrif of Nottingham in Robin Hood - he stole the film away from Kevin Costner in my opinion. Such a shame when the best people leave us too soon.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I definitely have felt this about Rickman. I've always thought he seemed like such a kind, bright, compassionate man. I actually felt it about Bowie too. For me it was a double blow, because I know that he was actually quite a similarly compassionate, kind, and magnificently intelligent person. And I honestly am nearly always indifferent to celebrity births, deaths, and marriages thing. x

    And your last paragraph - yes. x

    ReplyDelete