When you think of religion and philosophy you don’t expect to find the answers you’re looking for from a modern day writer/ lecturer/ mythologist. But the story of Joseph Campbell’s perspective on the spirit and happiness as told by Patrick Takaya Solomon will leave you feeling inspired with a hunger for life that isn’t achieved by just any ordinary documentary. “Finding Joe” guides us with the help and teachings of Campbell to understand the algorithm of ‘The Hero’s Journey’, that Hero being ourselves.
Not only does Solomon beautifully demonstrate the simplicity of what we so subconsciously know as “The Hero’s Journey” but he also uses a coterie of brilliant minds to translate his intent and deliver the message. With anecdotes from Deepak Chopra (Oprah Winfrey’s personal guru) to Rashida Jones, Mick Fleetwood to Tony Hawk, Solomon has an idol for every demographic that is bold enough to face the truth of Campbell’s teachings.
Using the guidelines of “The Hero’s Journey” we are reminded of the importance of facing our “dragons” or obstacles in life and that putting ourselves in uncomfortable and difficult positions often open doors we never knew existed before. Inspiring stories sprinkled throughout the film teach us the importance of being stuck in the labyrinth of life and how they better shape us into the people we become, our own personal Hero. “Finding your Bliss” becomes another beautiful theme for the film exemplifying Campbell’s religious philosophy that will leave you feeling anxious to apply to your own life.
Although for some the message maybe hard to digest, its familiarity and reinforcement is as comforting as a home cooked meal. “Finding Joe” is the film that leaves you paralyzed during the credits wondering what fascinating adventure lies ahead now that you’ve been told life’s little secret.
By Lori Gottlieb