Making the Grades
Bill Murray stars with Andie MacDowell and Chris Elliot in this comedy about cynical TV weatherman Phil Conners who is anything but excited to be covering the annual Groundhog Day festivities in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Anxious to leave town as quickly as possible, Phil and his crew get caught in a blizzard and are forced to return to the groundhog's home. The next morning Phil wakes up to find out he gets to do it all again, and again, and again. For some reason, his life is stuck on February 2nd.
This movie provides some very unique ideas of what you could do if granted the gift to live the same day of your life repeatedly. At first Conners sees the strange time warp to be more like a prison sentence. Yet after a few rerun days, he uses the strange phenomenon to his benefit. He eats too much, lands himself in jail, and explores his romantic fantasies providing the film's relatively mild sexual content. Then the old "too much of a good thing" adage kicks in and Conners bores of the routine.
At this point the real magic of the movie begins, with Conners starting to look for better things in life. Learning to love those he used to despise, and knowing the exact moment when someone in the community will need a helping hand, the once icy weatherman takes on a caring persona. He also finds time in his days (daze?) to explore and develop talents he never had before.
While at first impression this movie may seem merely amusing, it has the sort of premises that could keep you musing for quite a while. Now celebrating its 15th anniversary, the message of Groundhog Day seems even more relevant. As people age, they tend to become aware of how quickly the years are passing. In between the laughs, this film gives us a chance to pause and observe how we are spending our time and what things might be missing in our lives.
Discussion Ideas After The Movie
Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Groundhog Day.
If you were given a chance to live a day over, would you take it? What kinds of things might you want to change? What experiences would you want to live over again?
If you were given an infinite amount of time, what activities would you peruse? What is keeping you from exploring some of those things now?