Sometimes in life, “Dad” needs to follow his dreams by Tony Loiacono – teapartyhd.com
In Field of Dreams by Universal Films, Iowa farmer Kevin Costner, hears the command of a mysterious voice in the wind, plows under his crop of corn to build a state-of-the-art baseball diamond. He is supported by a willing wife, a beautiful daughter and a dream that he could make a difference.
Costner (playing Ray Kinsella) believes there is something special in his cornfields, and discovers, while music plays and shooting stars streak across the Iowa sky, that there are many other guys who never got to fulfill their destiny. Ray’s cornfield of dreams soon becomes the haven for a few restless baseball legends to play a few final games, just for the sheer fun of it.
We soon learn, Field of Dreams isn’t just a baseball movie after all. It’s about the connection between fathers and sons, memories remembered and longed for, love lost and found, the reality of a good wife; a overall lifelong experience of good and bad, that can never be taken away.
As the movie unfolds, a voice tells Ray (Costner) to search out reclusive 1960s radical Terence Mann (James Earl Jones), which Ray does, not having the slightest idea – why not, the voice was right about the cornfield. What follows is engaging (and well-acted) scenes of following your gut, confusing visions, images, and a dead doctor named Moonlight Graham (who comes to life in the form of Burt Lancaster).
As we find out, Ray had become estranged from his father but deeply regrets not having “had a catch” with his “dad.” As we learn, during his (Ray) youth they’d said some angry things and Ray ran off to pursue the hippie dream, never to see him again. His “dad” died before Ray “got the chance to take back some regrettable moments.”
In 1991 and 1992, I produced the Field of Dreams charity games with the support of MLB Hall of Famer’s Bob Gibson, Reggie Jackson, Bob Feller and Hollywood stars like Kelsey Grammar, Jason Priestly, Matt Perry and Meatloaf. But, what I remember most is “buzzing the field” in a twin-engine plane piloted by Jason Priestly, and looking back at my son sitting next to Ian Ziering (Beverly Hills, 90210) turning green and hiking through fields of corn stalking deer in abundance; and making memories with a son that will last a lifetime.
Today, I can’t watch the ending of Field of Dreams without getting choked up. It wasn’t the lines but the realities of remembering missed times in my life with my kids, not taking a risk or not fulfilling a dream. I did have many times of “had a catch,” as Ray would say, with my father but not nearly enough. Today my father is 79, and since I was young, we have never had a cross word between us but I too had a time of being estranged from my Father.
Reality sets in and tears fall from my face when I see the ghost of Ray’s dad standing on the Field of Dreams, as a young man, make his first appearance silhouetted against the backstop. But, just like almost every “Dad” I know, he too, had unfulfilled dreams. I cry when Doc Graham says “If I’d never gotten to be a doctor, now that would have been a tragedy.” I cry when Terence Mann says “People will come.” I cry when Shoeless Joe says “No, Ray. It was you.” I’m getting tears as I write this.
That’s because Field of Dreams is about the connection between fathers and sons, fused by blood and love and loss and experience, that can never be un-made. No matter how many baseballs – or epithets – have been tossed.
“Dad” enjoy your day Sunday!
A Proud Father, and Patriotic American – Tony Loiacono
In Memory of Field of Dreams, Dads and Dreams of our own fulfilled by making a difference in our family, our community and our country