What can the story about Stanley & Iris teach us about life?

 In the movie “Stanley & Iris,” Robert De Niro gives a quietly-effective performance (one of his best) as Stanley Cox, an unassuming factory cook in his mid-40s who can neither read nor write. Stanley accidentally befriends Iris (Jane Fonda), a working mother with a job at a large commercial bakery who is still getting over the death of her husband, though her circumstances don’t give her much time to grieve.

Iris is sharing her house with her two children, Kelly (Martha Plimpton) and Richard (Harley Cross), her unemployed sister, Sharon (Swoosie Kurtz), and her thuggish brother-in-law. One of the few bright spots in Iris’ life is her blossoming friendship with Stanley…

As it’s not my intention to give the movie away, let’s just say that “Stanley & Iris” is a warm little romantic flick with a happy ending, which is elevated in a big way by the charisma of its two stars.

What inspired me to share the above story with you was the last spoken line in the movie. It’s delivered by Stanley, an awkward, shy, and yet, in many subtle ways, very articulate man. Here’s that line: “Iris, anything is possible.

Anything is possible. Progress is often just an idea away, isn’t it?
Thank you for the reminder, Stanley, because it’s easy to forget that.

Jun 14, 2013