Essay on The Film My Girl

1945 Words 8 Pages
The 1991 movie My Girl tells the story of 11-year-old Vada Sultenfuss who, having lost her mother at birth , lives with her dementia-ridden grandmother and her job-oriented father in the funeral parlour that he owns and operates. The story follows Vada, an extreme hypochondriac who has many strange misconceptions about death, through a variety of life-changing experiences, including the engagement of her father and the devastating loss of her best friend, Thomas Jay. Through these experiences, the audience witnesses Vada’s social, emotional, and intellectual growth, as well as her changing views of death. One …show more content…
Her father’s lack of attention has also likely influences Vada’s misconceptions about death; his response to Vada’s question about whether a particularly small casket is for a child is “no”, that it is simply for short people. Furthermore, when
Vada feigns dying one night at dinner, her father’s reaction is to ignore her rather than talk to her about what the real issue is. Behavior such as this might be viewed as both a lack of understanding about death as well as an attempt to get attention that is so obviously absent. Vada’s father’s lack of attention to his daughter’s needs is similarly illustrated in the fact that when Vada starts her period, she believes she is haemorrhaging; he has not adequately educated her on the normal bodily changes that are unrelated to death, nor on the subject of death itself. A related important event in this movie is the quick engagement of Vada’s father. Vada reacts to this news negatively, recruiting Thomas Jay to run away with her, and eventually returning to find that no one has even noticed her absence which only frustrates her further. Vada, who has never seen her father as a particularly happy person, suddenly sees a change in his demeanor when he meets and starts dating Shelly; for Vada, this translates to her inability to make her father happy, that she is unneeded, and that she was not