Sunday, July 08, 2007

The Peaceful Warrior


Normally, I don't plug movies on my site, but this one is an exception. My instructor recommended Peaceful Warrior to me because it contains certain values and principles found in the martial arts, though this is not a martial arts flick by any stretch.

The film depicts the true story of Dan Millman, a world class American athlete who seeks guidance in the art of living from a man he dubs as Socrates (Nick Nolte), a local gas station attendant who possesses the wisdom and insight of his original namesake. Millman enjoys all the spoils of competitive victory - medals, status, and women - until his world is abruptly turned upside down by an unforeseen event.

Socrates administers one stern lesson after another to his young disciple with the panache of a Zen master that includes aspects of mindfulness and present-moment awareness. There are amusing moments though, especially Millman's first attempt at horse-stance meditation ("Five minutes? No problem!").

If anyone's already seen Peaceful Warrior I'd like to know your opinion of it, or your recommendation of other movies or works of this genre.

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18 Comments:

Blogger Nathan Teodoro said...

Hi John,
I read "The Way of the Peaceful Warrior" about 15 or 20 years ago, along with another book by Millman, and enjoyed them. It's interesting that you posted on this today, because my wife and I just saw another film last night on DVD that had the Peaceful Warrior trailer on it. I'll check it out, when possible then get back to your readers with comments.

4:48 PM  
Blogger Gordon White said...

Like Nathan, I read the book several years ago - and have since read it several more times along with all of Millman's books. Most recently he had a new book come out that told the story of Socrates as a boy.

Loved the movie Peaceful Warrior mostly because it held so true to the book, although it ended a little earlier then the book did.

I would recommend it, AND the book!

Gordon

8:38 AM  
Anonymous blackbeltmama said...

I haven't seen it. I'll have to check it out. Is that a new picture? It's a good one!

11:17 AM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Thanks, Nathan.

I haven't read the book, although I've seen it around for years. I'm going to have to check it out now.
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Thanks, Gordon.

Socrates as a boy. That sounds very interesting, I'll have to check that one out too.
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Black Belt Mama:

Yes, it's new as far as I know. I think it went straight to DVD/video. I really don't recall seeing it come out in theatres, but I could be wrong.

Apparently it's pretty popular, because I had to call four video places just to reserve a copy. Everyone else was out of them.

2:28 PM  
Blogger Charles James said...

Hi, John

Watched the trailer and wonder how I missed this movie. I suspect BBM is correct and it went straight to video with, maybe, limited play in theaters.

I also wonder how I missed the book.

I just ordered both from Amazon for a total of about $25.00

I look forward to viewing then reading.

6:19 PM  
Anonymous blackbeltmama said...

No, I meant new picture of YOU! Silly!

12:21 AM  
Blogger Becky said...

Netflix to the rescue! It is now at the top of my queue. I'll let you know what I think when I've watched it.

4:13 PM  
Blogger Nathan Teodoro said...

I believe they released it, then re-released it recently, but it never seemed to get much traction. Not sure why. I'm looking forward to hearing some comments on the movie, as well.

5:24 PM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Mr. James:

Great. Let me know what you think.
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Black Belt Mama:

Ohhh...

(face turning red)

Yes, it's a fairly recent photo, and thank you.

I knew what you were talking about!! (You can't call me silly until you get your black belt!); )
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Thanks, Becky.

9:40 PM  
Blogger Charles James said...

Hi, John

I watched the movie last night with my wife. Dan touched on several area's such as taoism, the power of now, and so on.

Excellent, glad I purchased it and my wife enjoyed it as much as I.

I am reading the book now and like some of the extra stuff you usually glean from that source such as the guy saying he was ninty or so years old.

Great read so far. Thanks!

9:36 AM  
Blogger Nathan Teodoro said...

Yeah John! You're hot! LOL!

1:58 PM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Mr. James:

That's good to hear. I'm glad you and your wife enjoyed it.

Thanks for getting back to me.
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Nathan:

Quiet, smartass!

; )

9:50 PM  
Blogger Charles James said...

I believe they released it, then re-released it recently, but it never seemed to get much traction. Not sure why.

Thought about this and I suspect it is because the majority today are caught up in the stuff your mouth full of food and hurry up to the next instant form of gratification.

This was in the movie at the beginning and Nolte tried to tell Dan that he should slow down, enjoy the sensations of eating thus intimating that the journey is far better than the destination.

I believe today's society has pushed us into this instant gratification on a constant basis and society has lost its ability to enjoy the process that gets us there.

Ergo, not many today would get it or enjoy it since it isn't a video game, etc. This is why more movies are geared toward gaming sensations then old time story lines with plots an things.

Make sense?

10:00 AM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Mr. James:

...not many today would get (the movie) or enjoy it since it isn't a video game, etc. This is why more movies are geared toward gaming sensations then old time story lines with plots an things.


Movies like this are unusual today. It's similar to The Karate Kid, but without the flash. You never know though, this could be the start of a new trend of movies.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Charles James said...

I have read through about two thirds of the book "Way of the Peaceful Warrior" and all I can say is it improves on the movie a good deal.

His writing is not complete yet his story and lessons are clear, concise, and beneficial.

Read and Do!

11:59 AM  
Blogger [Mat] said...

Seen the "celestine prophecy" yet??

:D

10:11 PM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Mr. James:

I'm reading the book too. So far, it's very good. Typically, the original work is better than when Hollywood gets a hold of it.
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Mat:

Seen The Celestine Prophecy? As in movie? When did this come out? I don't get out much. I think the author of the book wrote a series of these "Celestine" works.

10:57 PM  
Blogger [Mat] said...

It sure is out on dvd. Even in french.

The author (errr.... Mr... something.-Redfield?) made three books which are quite interesting.

(redfield it is)

Here is a link to the movie's website
http://www.thecelestineprophecymovie.com/

The movie is quite loyal to the book. Although as in any book to movie transition, lots of details were not included in the movie. It's interesting and another point of view on life. Surely not martial arts related, but my little experience in martial arts led me to chi-ki -whatever- which in turn led me to this kind of movies.

Even my gf, who is very reticent to such things (but often asks for hands on her belly) liked the movie.

It's good story-telling and poor acting. :D

I found it at the local dvd rental place.

Cheers,

10:28 AM  

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