I must admit that I absolutely love the internet. The things you can find on there…amazing! Because of the movie I’ve already chosen for Monday’s post, I’ve been in a super-nostalgic mood these last couple of days. In my efforts to fill that need, I managed to find some classic movies from my childhood that I haven’t seen in years. So, I am suggesting a couple of them for you this weekend – “The Journey of Natty Gann” (1985) and “Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken” (1991).
“Natty Gann” takes place during the depression, and tells the story of a young girl who travels west on her own to reach her father in Washington, who had to go there for work. It stars 15-year-old Meredith Salenger as Natty (short for Natalie) and a 19-year-old John Cusack, as well as Ray Wise as her father. “Wild Hearts” is also a depression-era tale. It is the true story of a young woman (Gabrielle Anwar) and her life as a diving girl in a girl-and-horse high diving act, costarring Michael Schoeffling (“Sixteen Candles” hunk) and Cliff Robertson.
Both films, having been made by Disney during their resurgence back into a cultural superpower, are great family film-fare. I admit fully that I am a Disney kid, and proud of it. I remember when The Disney Channel first went on the air (you know, when you had to pay for it). It was one of my favorite channels to watch, and I saw both of these movies for the first time there. Back then, Disney was great at telling stories with strong, independent female leads. None of this Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus kind of stuff. They made movies for the stories, not the profits. Both “Natty Gann” and “Wild Hearts” are great films for young girls, from an era long passed.
So, this weekend, take a break and embrace those memories of younger days…or create new ones with your kids. It’s family-friendly weekend here on Diary of a Celluloid Girl. Both films are on DVD, or you can catch “The Journey of Natty Gann” here and “Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken” on Netflix. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
(Post-tidbit: Meredith Salenger made a cameo appearance in Disney's "Race to Witch Mountain" (2009), playing a television report named...wait for it - Natalie Gann.)