“It Could Happen to You” Movie Review and Analysis
In this movie, an honest, kind police man is told to buy a lottery ticket by his wife because of a dream she had. He purchases the ticket but after his stop at a local diner, he doesn’t have enough money for a tip, so he promises the waitress half of his winnings in the lottery or at least a tip tomorrow. When the police man gets home, his wife is enraged that he got her birthday wrong and thus bought the wrong numbers; however, that doesn’t last long once she finds out that they won. However, many other people won as well, so their winnings were only 4 million. When the police man told his wife that he promised half their winnings to a waitress, she again was enraged.
The waitress, however, is shocked that the police officer is such an honest man and is really going to give her half of his winnings. At this time the waitress was declaring bankruptcy because of her phony husband’s spending, so the 2 million is a wonderful treat. Despite her situation, the waitress does not spend all of the money on herself. Actually her and the cop go to the local subway station and purchase rides for everyone there. They also enjoy their time together having fun and roller skating, and they take a local group of kids to a ballpark stadium to play some baseball. The waitress even purchases the diner she works at so she, nor the customers, no longer have to put up with the rude owner. And most of all she can afford to divorce her good-for-nothing husband.
The police officer’s wife splurged on her winnings by going on shopping sprees for only herself. She even decides to divorce the police man because of his generous giving to the waitress and others. During the divorce settlement, she even goes as far as to sue her husband for the 2 million he gave to the waitress. She lies about her husband being the one who actually bought the ticket, and she lies about the facts in her dream that lead her to buy the ticket, and she lies about her birthday – since her husband got it wrong in order to purchase the winning ticket. She sadly wins and the cop and the waitress are now struggling to figure out how to get the money.
With one last test of the cop’s and the waitress’s generosity, an undercover reporter discuses himself as a homeless person and tries to get one of the free meals given out at the waitress’s diner, and although she is struggling to figure out how to get 2 million dollars, she still lets him in and feeds him. Also, the growing romance between the cop and the waitress doesn’t seem to be affected by this circumstance either. The two calmly dance and know that they could be broke but still have their love for each other, so they know everything will work out no matter what happens.
Their upbeat thinking and generosity now comes back to them just in time when the undercover reporter writes a front page article on how they helped him even though they are going through a tough time. Because of this article, people start donating money to them, and they raise enough money to pay off the cop’s wife and to be able to keep the diner and continue to live their happy, giving lives.
The cop’s wife on the other hand, marries the old man she met on the dinner cruse who fools her into believing him that he is rich and knows how to turn money into more money. She ends up broke and alone as a nail dresser and living with her mother, due to the man simply running off with all of the money. The waitress’s ex-husband becomes a taxi driver. And the cop and the waitress get married.
What I like about this movie is that everyone gets what they deserve. The hard working kindhearted waitress gets to do what she loves and is best at without the doom of an undeserving boss looming over her, and she finds the type of love she needs and deserves. The kindhearted man married to a money grubbing woman also gets freed from his trappings to his greedy wife and discovers a true connection with someone as giving and kindhearted as himself. And most of all, the greedy, selfish wife ends up broke and alone, because she is treated how she treats others.
I like the representation of the phrase “what you give is what you get” in how the kindhearted people get rewarded with greatness, and the mean, selfish people get used and thrown away. The idea that the harder you try to hold on to money the easier it slips away – like a slippery bar of soap, you can’t squeeze it or it will slip away – is demonstrated well in this movie with the actions of the greedy wife. Because she is so greedy and holding on to her money so tightly, she falls into the trap of the old man who convinces her that he will make her more money with her money, yet he just takes it and leaves her. In addition to this is the idea that what you give will come back twofold, and this idea is demonstrated well as well. When the husband is willing to give 2 million to a stranger then continues to give to more and more people, it seems like he is going to lose everything when his wife sues him for money, yet because of his generous donations he receives more than he let go of.
I think, what makes this film so touching and moving is that for the kindhearted waitress, she is at her lowest low financially and is in a unfit relationship, yet she continues to give and be kind even though she is struggling financially and is annoyed by her boss and husband. The fact that she continues to be kind despite the circumstances in her life is what helps her get the event that changes her life. This en-lifts the audience because most people – whether they are at rock bottom or not – usually have at least one thing going against them at some point in their lives, and it reminds people that if they continue on with a positive attitude, they will most likely have something rewarding and good happen in return.
It reminds people also not to be greedy, and how greed is the weight that pulls us to our depths. It reminds people of the benefits of giving wholeheartedly; how every action has a counter action, whether it be good or bad; so when we give we receive more and when we withhold we lose. Also, the idea that being rich is a mindset rather than a status is demonstrated when the cop’s wife gets financially rich, since she is not set with the right mentality of being rich, she goes back to where she started.
The romance in this movie is pleasant and uplifting. The fact of cop’s wife being rude and greedy and the waitress’s husband using her for her money and leaving her when she doesn’t have any, makes their relationship even more heartfelt. Since they both came from relationships with people more in love with money than them, added with the fact that they are both generous givers, allows their relationship to be more sincere and sweet. Additionally, when they were faced with the financial trouble of owing the police officer’s wife money, they discovered that there is more than money holding their relationship together unlike in their previous relationships.
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