I love Beverly Cleary’s books. I especially like anything with Ramona in it. It may be because I am a middle child, and I identify with wonderful Ramona. Ramona is 9 in the recent movie–and I went to it with two nine-year-old girls (twins that I have known since they were babies). I think they liked it, but I LOVED it. I loved that there was no designer clothing. I loved that Ramona felt responsibility for the happiness of the family. I loved her when she kept making mistakes, feeling unloved, but trying again.
SPOILER ALERT: I cried at least five times in this movie, and wept loudly (I was trying not to) when Picky-Picky died. Mr. Quimby called her “Icky Sticky” and other names during the movie, but at the graveside Beezus says, “And I want you to know he always knew your name–he was just pretending he didn’t know it.” That made me completely lose it.
All the time, my companions were dry eyed. I was the one completely into the movie (sniffle, sniffle, sniffle). I am sure they enjoyed it, but I loved it.
I’m not too old to remember worrying that my parents would get a divorce, worrying that we would run out of money, worrying that we would have to move, worrying that I would never be “normal.” Ramona was me when I was that age. I can remember stewing about who I would live with when my parents got divorced. I decided I wanted to live with Daddy, but that Mommy needed me more, and I would need to live with her. That’s how neurotic I was. Wait–no reason to put that in past tense!