Yesterday I walked across a field with my eyes closed. After the heavy grounded feeling of walking in wet sand for almost an hour, walking blind on hard-packed dirt with sunburned grass felt like flying with the wind in my face, blowing my hair around. Or floating, at least. The only other people in the field were three black-robed figures sparring with each other using long sticks. With my eyes closed they sounded like three people playing football. The field was so big it was easy for me to avoid walking into them even without the benefit of sight.
We've been having some private stress around here (on top of the published stress of trying over and over again to get pregnant
) so yesterday Delia canceled her show and we *finally* went to see The Dark Knight
. I wasn't nearly as excited going into it as I was Batman Begins
and didn't feel the same attachment to this one, maybe because I preferred the more solitary focus on Bruce Wayne in Batman Begins and the whole emphasis on creating and finding an alter ego for himself. The imagery in Batman Begins was also darker and more appealing to me in a sort of Robert Louis Stevenson
way than Dark Knight, which everyone keeps describing as "darker" than BB but really was just more hideous, brutal and scary. Yeah, the humour was darker and everything felt more tragic because of Heath Ledger's potent brilliance, but that diverted so much attention from Christian Bale that it wasn't really about Batman or anybody except for Heath Ledger's Joker. Oh yeah, I do love the whole commentary on human nature being a dual thing of dark and light, I'm just saying that it didn't speak to me on a deeply personal level the way Batman Begins did.
As I get older, it's harder and harder for me to watch movies without being bored and annoyed by what seems like derivations from other movies I think are "better" or strike me as more original just because *I* happened to see them when I was younger and was first introduced to certain themes. There were a lot of familiar elements in The Dark Knight, but it really was awesome enough that it didn't annoy me, especially since I recognize that there are *no* original ideas (plus, having no familiarity with comics or specialized movie knowledge I KNOW I'm completely ignorant of where some of these things "originated"). I felt like I recognized stuff from In the Line of Fire
and freaky cross-dressing a la Silence of the Lambs
. Since I know nothing of the comics and never even saw Jack Nicholson's Joker, I couldn't help totally associating the smile/scar with the Black Dahlia, especially since I just picked up another book (with the ghastly pictures) about the case.
Anyway, I loved the magic trick with the pencil and lines like "whatever doesn't kill you simply makes you... stranger." Favorites aside from Heath's performance? Maggie Gyllenhaal's Rachel Dawes was SO much better than Katie's -- LOVED her, and the chase scene/shootout with the semis. We also loved the political commentary on whether or not the threat of terrorism justifies spying on people, etc. Still, I don't feel compelled to see this one more than that once in the theater (unless we could see it in IMAX). I really wasn't prepared for the violence, and of course it always annoys me when there's no swearing in a movie but there's plenty of freaky brutality (I could not hack the part at the end when the dogs and Batman were being beaten with the pipe) and it gets less than an R rating; just having the knowledge in my head that our government is prosecuting people for "obscenity" even for just writing taboo stories and that they refuse to let COPA
die makes me resentful when I see how violence in movies is embraced in America as totally acceptable for young people to watch. I can't watch this stuff without thinking, "so THIS is okay for thirteen year olds to see but the sight of my clitoris will scar them for life?" Whatever. It's not that I want kids to see porn or that I don't appreciate a movie without swearing or that I think violent movies should be boycotted, it's the nonsensical double standards that drive me up a wall.
So does Christian Bale's alleged assault of his mom and sister ruin my appreciation of his acting? Ummm, no. Just like a president cheating on his wife has absolutely zero to do with whether or not he's a good president, whether or not Marky Mark is a homophobe or a racist has nothing to do with my enjoyment when I watch Boogie Nights or Entourage and I still think PYT is a fucking awesome song whether or not Michael Jackson is a pedo. Given the rant I just made, it probably surprises you to hear that I don't relate to people who can't enjoy a celebrity's work because of their crimes and supposed personal flaws (which may or may not be true, but we will never know). It's not that I don't enjoy juicy gossip about famous people, but it's just another form of entertainment to me that is separate from whether or not I enjoy their actual work. Like, is it really a surprise to Christian Bale's fans that he's a freak? The guy wanted to starve himself to 100 pounds only eating an apple and can of tuna a day for The Machinist
; were you really not aware that he's fucking mental? Apparently, because I've been reading whining from women who think they can't adore him anymore. YOU ARE WATCHING HIS MOVIES, NOT DATING HIM!
So yeah . . . sometimes I can separate things. Other times? Not so much.
In addition to taking the night off for a movie, I also made emergency reservations for a three night stay at the beach next week, so our Sunday, August 10th and Monday, August 11th shows will be canceled. We will do some shooting while we're there, but mostly we just need to get away. Yes, we have a beach here, but Puget Sound and the Strait aren't the same as the actual ocean. I didn't know it until Delia
told me, but the timing is perfect because we'll be out there for the meteor shower. She also just happened to order some things from REI before we made these plans so it all fell into place perfectly since the days I happened to find open rooms and camping spots weren't my first pick before I knew these things, but just happened to be after the REI stuff will arrive and during the meteor shower.
Labels: altered states, celebrity, movies, Pacific Northwest, politics, pop culture, rants, values, violence, worse than porn