As genres go, I typically prefer comedy, or, if a subject matter is serious, to be so far-fetched the events could never happen. Examples of my favorites include Jurassic Park, any Marvel superhero movie, or anything starring Will Ferrell. When someone begins a recommendation with “I cried my eyes out, you have to read/watch it!” My automatic response is a hard pass. Thankfully, a few years ago, I read “Same Kind of Different As Me,” ignorant to the tears which would lay ahead of me.
The book is a memoir by Ron Hall and Denver Moore. Together they told the story of their lives, each arriving at the same spot (a homeless shelter – Hall as an act of coerced charity and Moore as a man in need of assistance).
Central to the story is Hall’s wife, who eventually bring the two men together resulting in a beautiful friendship. From their experience came a speaking tour, a book deal, and, almost twenty years after their first meeting, a movie about their story.
A few weeks ago I received an email from Knox Area Rescue Ministries, a homeless shelter in the big city near my town, inviting me to a sneak peak of the movie. I knew I couldn’t pass up the opportunity, and Jay graciously agreed to accompany me.
Movies, or at least the ones which are well done, elicit strong reactions from me. To prepare for this particular touching story, I took a pocket-pack of tissues as well as grabbing plenty of napkins at the concession stand just in case.
Before the film, I’d expressed concern over how the movie could possibly cover the important details, specifically Moore’s backstory. While time constraints limited the narrative, they managed to hit crucial circumstances which formed him into the man who Hall eventually meets.
As per normal conversions, the book is better than the movie, so I encourage you to pick up a copy. Once you are finished with the memoir, head out and see the story on the big screen.