A LETTER, IN AND OF ITSELF, IS JUST WORDS WRITTEN ON PAPER...
...but add a bit of your heart and it miraculously transforms into a Love Letter. And a Love Letter should not be reserved for a "Lover." No, a Love Letter is for your sister, your old best friend, your cousin, or even for someone you've never met. This notion of a Love Letter is merely one of the gifts I received from watching (not once, but twice) "DEREK DELGAUDIO'S IN & OF ITSELF" on HULU. This experience turned my world upside-down and inside-out in the most magical of ways.
In the spirit of writing Love Letters, I'm going to write two of them here. One to someone I've never met and the other to an enormous corporation. First, though, why I'm sharing all of this.
"I AM..." A STORYTELLER
(You'll get the reference when you see the film)
I am a former Los Angeles-based TV producer, writer, and director turned artist, now living in the Pacific Northwest. Given my near 30 years in "the biz," I'm a wee bit jaded. It takes a lot for television programming to rock my soul, but IN & OF ITSELF knocked me right on my ass (in the best of ways). Despite leaving Hollywood, I did not leave storytelling. I AM...A STORYTELLER. Writing and sharing stories is part of my being. It's in my nature. And those philosophical notions of "nature" and "being" are part of the core of DelGaudio's inimitable story. I will reveal NOTHING about the details of this show, but I will tell you that when I say I cried my heart out, I mean it was as though my shiny, beating, blood red heart was cradled in my hands and smiling up at me.
When you reach the end of IN & OF ITSELF, you and I will have watched the same performance, yet our personal experiences will have been 100% unique. And I think you'll see, as I did, that the end is really just the beginning for us all and the aforementioned letter writing is where DelGaudio’s magic continues.
AND NOW FOR MY LOVE LETTERS
Duuuuuuude! What have you done to me with your film IN & OF ITSELF? My world just fell off its axis. I watched your performance two nights ago and my heart couldn't let go, so I watched it again today just to double-down on my commitment to absorbing every nuance of your story, both real and imagined. If buckets of "love tears" are any indication, I needed more buckets after my second viewing. In fairness, it's hard to tell if I even stopped crying between then and now. Don't get me wrong, you didn't trigger a "Steel Magnolias my gut is ripped out and I can't go on" cry-fest. Instead, brick-by-brick, you broke through some of my most fortified barriers to reach my soul. You pulled out all of these feelings of forgiveness and self-love. Through your vivid metaphor, brilliant illusion, wicked sleight-of-hand, and insanely moving and downright shocking storytelling, you laid bare who you are through which I can now—more honestly—see who I am.
As I sit home and grieve for all we have endured over the past year, I somehow feel renewed. This damned-near unbearable pandemic and all of the time spent at home has forced me to be with myself, undistracted. That's hard as hell. Somedays, it feels like it's too much. IN & OF ITSELF left me with a feeling of being lifted up and out. I extend my gratitude to you for having created this nuanced masterpiece brimming with depth, reflection, and faith in our humanity. Please give Frank Oz my undying love and appreciation for his bewitching directing. He is the Cabernet to your Filet Mignon, a perfect pairing.
Just thought I'd write you a letter (wink).
I Don't Know You, But I Love You,
A Premium Subscriber,
P.S. I’d really appreciate you fixing the rewind issue.
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