Essay The Peaceful Warrior

946 WordsOct 9, 20074 Pages
I came into the screening of Peaceful Warrior, director Victor Salva's adaptation of former gymnast/self-help writer Dan Millman's 1980 autobiography Way of the Peaceful Warrior: A Book That Changes Lives (using a screenplay written by Kevin Bernhardt), with mixed feelings. I had seen clips of the movie on "Ebert & Roeper," and they seemed a little boring. When I finally saw the movie, I wasn't bored…but I did have a different negative reaction ultimately. Dan Millman (Scott Mechlowicz) is a UC Berkeley gymnast who has everything going for him. He doesn't have any money worries, he is good looking, he has talent, he has good grades, and the women flock all around him. He even has a chance at the Olympic qualifiers in men's…show more content…
This new lifestyle change starts to alienate his friends/team members, like Tommy, Trevor Scott (Paul Wesley), Kyle (B.J. Britt.) His performance on his Gymnastics squad also starts to suffer, which almost forces his coach, Mr. Garrick (Tim DeKay) to consider dropping him. After Socrates forces Dan to "take out the trash" in his head, i.e. clear his mind, he does an amazing routine on the Pommel Horse. Dan is excited about learning this new "taking out the trash" trick, but Socrates doesn't consider it a trick. Eventually, Dan becomes frustrated with Socrates and figures that he doesn't need the old man's help anymore. That day, Dan gets into a horrible motorcycle accident that shatters one of his legs, forcing the doctors to have to put a steel rod in it. Doctor Hayden (Ray Wise) tells him that, with hard work, he'll eventually walk again, but his gymnastic dreams are over. It might take a little bit of Socrates' mind power to achieve goals that most would consider impossible…assuming that Socrates ever existed at all. Millman's book is technically called a "fictionalized autobiography"…but that feels like an oxymoron. When you start a movie out with the words "based on true events," you expect some reality to your movie. Yet Socrates is appearing on rooftops in a split second, materializing in Dan's bed while he is getting it on with a girl, and forcing Dan to have a heightened sense of his surroundings. In reality, people don't have those kind of

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