The paper "How to Make an American Quilt" is an excellent example of a movie review on visual arts and film studies. “ How to Make an American Quilt” is a 1995 film which, like a quilt, is made up of short tales of love related to the characters who are making the wedding quilt for Finn -- the main character in the story. Finn is engaged to be married and spending the summer making her thesis at her grandmother’ s home. While making her quilt, “ the women tell Finn the stories of the loves that shaped their lives” (“ Synopsis: How to Make an American Quilt” ), and Finn herself realizes the importance of making the right choice.
The film also depicts the way in which women have had their dreams stifled by a society that wedded them to their home (Boerner). Sophie is one of the characters in the film who made this movie an interesting one. Sophie’ s story is one which starts at a swimming pool – she goes for a dive, and Preston sees her. Preston instantly falls for Sophie and they become a couple soon enough.
Sophie brings Preston to her swimming hole where they get to consummate their love. The next scene then shows Sophie looking after a baby with Preston packing his things, and on his way to Colorado for his work. Sophie doesn’ t want to be left behind so she tells Preston of her apprehension. On the promise that Preston will allow her and the baby to tag along when their baby gets older, Sophie relents. Soon, more babies come and Sophie never gets to tag along. Sophie becomes a cold, lifeless and boring companion, and she becomes hateful of her husband and her work.
Preston makes a pond for Sophie in their backyard, but the latter ignores his efforts. Preston tries to remind Sophie of the time they went to the swimming hole, and he asked her why she stopped going. Sophie’ s guess was that it was because she became a wife. That night, something was rekindled in Sophie so she asked Preston to go with her to the swimming hole, but Preston wouldn’ t wake up. Early the next morning, however, Preston left and never came back.
Based on Anna’ s quotation, Sophie seems to have made the wrong choices in her life when after falling in love with Preston and starting a family with him, she forgot how to enjoy their love and their life together. Her actions dulled the colors in her life, which made it lose its natural beauty, thus, driving Preston away instead of making him stay. Despite Preston’ s initiative to show her his love by making her a pond, she showed indifference instead of appreciation.
When she was able to come to her senses, it was already too late and Preston had already decided to do what she always feared that he would do – that is, to run off. In my own life, I experienced having been in a broken family and having a father who was irresponsible and never around. My mother was a strong woman who raised us on her own. We experienced a lot of hardships and trials and eventually, I and my siblings were all able to finish our studies.
Nevertheless, I promised myself that I would never want my children to experience the life that I went through, and I succeeded. Now, my family and I live comfortably with a life that I have always dreamed of. As stated by Anna: “ I have to bring all these different squares together and balance them in harmonious design” (American Quilt 1995). It was unlike what Sophie did when she made the wrong choices. I did not let hatred get the better of me and I did not allow anger, revenge or bitterness fill my heart, but rather I chose to gather up what I had and work out something which could inspire me to rise above my situation.
In making the right choices, I was able to come up with the most desirable balance that made the original beauty of my life to come out and to make all its elements to work and blend well together. One good quotation which I was able to come across in going through reviews is this – “ the quilt is a perfect metaphor for human life as it makes its way through the generations, particularly how women serve as the thread and fabric of life” (“ How to Make an American Quilt 7/10” ).
Indeed, there is much which can be learned from this movie which tackles life, relationships, friendship, women and the intricacies of love and finding true happiness.