Movie Life

Its been exactly one year since I left Sydney and embarked on this remarkable EuroTrip. I will write several posts to mark the occasion, perhaps some flashback humour.
They say when life is eventful or too good to be true, it can sometimes feel like you're in a movie. The last few days have me thinking just that.

We've all laughed at observational comedy, nodded after reading a poignant quote and gotten emotional at the movies but sometimes we experience things in life that brings a new enlightenment. Things start making more sense and we we find a deeper resonance. Then you realise that what you thought you knew, you didn't truly know. Until now.

Below are some classic movie tropes that travelers might recognise:

Pulp Fiction (1994)
"What's in the briefcase?"
pulp fiction, briefcase, orange light"I believe everyone should experience travel because..."
1. Travelers often say they're on a journey to find themselves - a search for adventure, the "perfect wave". A higher purpose, some direction and *gulp* the meaning of life. This is called a "Macguffin".

The Matrix (1999)
"After this, there is no turning back"
matrix, red pill, blue pill"That kind of stuff never happens at home" 
2. Through travel we get to experience many new things, largely because we dare to pose the questions we might ordinarily be scared to in the comforts of home. You take the plunge - you'll try new foods, approach the girl or follow that stranger. You go down that Rabbit Hole.

Lost in Translation (2003)
"I'm looking for, like, an accomplice"
lost in translation, accomplice, hyatt"I found out what really matters"
3. After you've realised your dreams and overcome your fears. Now what? Some of the easier questions get answered but the harder stuff (refer to 1.) remains a mystery. It's a Riddle for the ages.


Total Recall (1990)
"We call it the Ego Trip"
total recall, mars, dream"I did so much stuff"
4. By the end of your trip you've amassed plenty of experiences and emotions over a concentrated time. Depending on the reliability of your documentation and the availability of running mates you may start to forget what happened. Disbelieve some of your crazier adventures and wonder, Was it a dream?

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
"Home is behind, the world ahead..."
lord of the rings, return king, hobbits"Nothing's changed, none of my friends at home understand"
5. Your trip's over and now you're home. Life returns to its normal pace and you find yourself slotting back into routine. You feel detached from your friends and find yourself chasing after travel ghosts. You start getting restless, plotting your next adventure. You realise you feel like a Stranger in a Familiar Land.

Find these Movie Tropes and more at

Find some of my favorite Movie posts below:
- Backpacking Round the World Trip - A modern day "Hero's Journey" (Joseph Campbell)
- Coming Home from a year abroad. Reverse Culture shock and beating the travel Blues: The Hurt Locker (2008)
- Home Movies: 'Before Sunrise' - "I've never been anywhere" quote
- Home Reading: 'Myth of Sisyphus' by Albert Camus - On the Writer, Actor and Traveler
- Find all my 'Movie' posts here


  1. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is one of my favorite movie of all time.

    1. The final scene where Samwise returns to his family who have nothing but love for him and no idea or interest in his incredible odyssey is touching to me.