October 13, 2009
This is a fine film about “the serious business of happiness.” It is, essentially, a film about spirituality and an opportunity for luminaries from various walks of life to share their spiritual wisdom and insights to help uplift humanity. What sets this film apart from others of a similar bent is the people who are featured in it. In addition to the well-known names such as Eckhart Tolle, Marianne Williamson, and Don Miguel Ruiz, we meet Nachum Schifren—the surfing Rabbi, Geronimo (Pratt) Ji Jaga—a man who spent twenty-seven years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, Reverend Robert Schuller (the Crystal Cathedral), the Venerable Tibetan Lama Chodok Gyatso Nubpa, and many others who bring varied perspectives to the common theme of self-realization and spiritual developemnt.
Rather than just a series of talking heads, the film has some wonderful creative elements that give it interest and variety. There is a loose storyline about a young man who is searching for happiness (the film is subtitled “The Awakening of Sean Mulvihill”) and it is through his journey that we meet these various spiritual “experts.” I have one criticism that in an effort to create a “plot,” the film seemed a bit choppy visually and a little clunky, particularly in the beginning. Fortunately, this is a minimal design element distraction in what is overall a film worth watching over and again. (A nice touch to bring in Swami Beyondananda to bridge segments of the film with a little spiritual comic relief.)