Teddy Bear
By Wesley With on January 31, 2012

This film was a wonderful, mainly because my heart resonated with the main character in an indirect way. This was my first film here at the festival in which I made a personal connection with my own life experience and the story and experiences of the Characters in the film. The main character in this film has an odd relationship with his Mother. She controls every aspect of his life. In psychological language, he has co-dependent relationship with his mother. He can’t escape her grip. He does everything she demands, and if he fails his guilt complex basically cripples him. Now I have wonderful relationship with my mother and that is why I use the the term “indirect” connection. During my early twenties, I dated a young girl very seriously. We had a great relationship expect that she had a co-dependent relationship with her mother. It crippled her ability to choose for herself, especially when it came to our relationship. She often couldn’t spend time with me because of her mother’s demands. Her mother new very personal stuff about me, because my girlfriend would be guilted into sharing my personal information with her mother. It was not very healthy in my opinion. Needless to say it was a difficult relationship with many odd dynamics. So as I watched this movie, I found myself feeling deeply passionate for this Character. I yearned for his freedom with his mother. I found myself an active fan “cheering” and “rooting” for his escape from this emotional prison. Finally in the end of the movie, the main character breaks free from his bondage and chains. In this moment I felt free. I walked out of that theater with a wonderful feeling and understanding of freedom. Our society has this give and take type of economy. You can’t love freely without expecting love in return. As such I think this film gave an important lesson in “no strings attached”. It inspired me to pursue my own relationship with harder vigor in love and grace, without a dependence. It really highlighted the importance of freedom, and gave me a sense of my own freedom.

About the Author: Wesley

1 Response to "Teddy Bear"

  1. Teddy bear is a Danish film about a massive bodybuilder named Dennis who, despite his size, is insecure in his masculinity and really in his humanity. Unable to carry on a conversation with women, unable to draw boundaries with his mother, this mountain of a man seems paralyzed and mousy. Dennis is a lover at heart and desperately wants to find a mate, yet his insecurity around women stifles him. This is striking giving the reality that we might expect a person with this characteristic to lack discipline and drive in the rest of life. Clearly, this is not the case for Dennis who has trained faithfully for years to sculpt his body into a piece of art. The juxtaposition of his mother’s physical size versus Dennis’ along with her massive influence in his life is a clear metaphor for his life.
    In many ways, I saw this film as Dennis’ journey in finding and stepping into what some might call the “King” archetype within himself: this is illustrative by leadership, a sense of justice, drawing boundaries, standing and speaking with confidence, saying what one wants, asserting oneself, etc. The moment it happens for him the first time, I think, is when he chooses to go back into Toi’s (his Thai fiancee) apartment after leaving in shame and fear. This sets forth a cascade of positive boundary making and choices to claim what he wants in life. In the end, through gaining his confidence, Dennis winds up happy and more secure in himself. In essence then, Teddy Bear is a ‘growing up’ tale about a man who discovers another part of masculinity.
    Personally, I resonated with the main character of the film because this has been my journey as well: learning to be confident in myself and to go get what I want and to pay the emotional cost for it. It is hard to be disciplined in a physical sense. It is harder to do the same emotionally. This is what Dennis discovers how to do; and in my experience, it is life changing.

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