Mister Rogers & MeClosed Captioning
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Mister Rogers & Me - America's Favorite Neighbor changed millions of lives. This is one man's story. Mister Rogers summered in a modest house on a quiet corner of Nantucket Island. MTV producer Benjamin Wagner's mother rented the cottage next door. Mister Rogers really was his neighbor. On the afternoon of their first meeting, "America's Favorite Neighbor" asked the young journalist about his job. Wagner--a PBS mind in a jump-cut, sound-bit MTV world– expressed enthusiasm tempered with an iota of ambivalence. Mister Rogers said warmly, "I feel so strongly that deep and simple is far more essential than complex." One year and many "deep and simple" conversations later, Rogers whispered, "Spread the message, Benjamin!" After Rogers' death in 2003, Wagner and his brother, Christofer, set out to learn more about the man himself and discover what he meant by "deep and simple." The brothers' travels led them to conversations with Meet the Press anchor (and Nantucket neighbor) Tim Russert; Arthur creator Marc Brown; NPR correspondent (and sometimes Neighborhood co-host) Susan Stamberg; Neighborhood puppeteer and Campaign for Commercial-Free Childhood founder, Dr. Susan Linn; and many other neighbors and friends of Mister Rogers. The brothers come to know more than just the man and his luminous legacy. Their personal journey unearths the roots of Mister Rogers' values, unmasks the forces acting against depth and simplicity, and helps them to develop the means to lead deeper, simpler lives.
I love this film! It's a must see for any of us that grew up with Mister Rogers Neighborhood. It reminded me that it's important to slow down and make time for the most important things in your ilfe. I was also inspired by the deep and lasting impact that Fred Rogers had on everyone around him and the difference he made in the world. I highly recommend.
So Much More Than a Documentary
I guess I don't even know where to start...
I've always enjoyed Mr. Rogers and never was embarrassed to tell others to watch his program. His basic message of love and respect for our "neighbors" is universal and should be mandatory viewing for all human beings. This documentary is very touching on many levels and shows that true kindness and friendship (without stipulations) is unfortunately rare but cherished. Please watch this documentary and remember that, "I like you just the way you are."
Benjamin Wagner briefly met Fred Rogers not long before his death and picked up a simple pearl of wisdom from him: "deep and simple is better than shallow and complex." He was so moved by the idea that, with his brother Chris' help, he decided to spread the word by making this simple, sweet film. This is not a biopic--you do learn about Mr. Roger's life--but by interviewing people who knew him and worked with him, instead, what the Wagners have managed to do is to bring to life his ideas. This movie will make you try harder to be a better person, to understand the value of living in the moment, and of silence, and to live up the ideals of that man in the red cardigan. Worth the download.