Saturday, January 06, 2007
I will get going today but it's a useful exhaust right now to write here now. we've watched a lot of television with Erin in hospital. Erin hasn't felt up to doing much else. watched some of The Last Samurai. only the last third, and with plenty of expert interruptions. set in 19th century Japan, with a collision of old and new world. Tom Cruise as an American who hooks up with Samurai. there's probably plenty of hokum involved in the movie, like when the woman (geisha?) undresses Tom and the camera lovingly glazes his shiny perfect skin, but samurai culture as presented seemed interesting. and the hyperkinetic fights. how is it that swords slicing human flesh is kinda sexy, empowering, lovely? cuz that's the impression one gets, the gamer thrill. remember Obi Wan intoning the elegance of laser swords. now I do understand that guns were available in Japan in say the 17th century, yet warriors tended toward formalized one on one encounters rather than the wholesale virtues of gunplay. anyway, the final battle, swords versus guns, was straight out of Braveheart, with a side trip to Charge of the Light Brigade. I'm willing to watch the whole movie, despite Tom Cruise's presence. Batman and Robin was pretty ridiculous. gthe Tim Burton Batmans (ugh, Batmen) live well with Burton's quirky obsessiveness, but the franchise looks dead now. the complete flouting of physics bothers me, tho I suppose it shouldn't. the excitement, say, of yoiur hero falling from a building is the scrambling intensity of saving said ass. if the falling takes ten minutes and you're equipped qwith tons of gadgets that can do anything, the tension diminishes. Arnold looked silly in his get up, and plodded thru his role. why's he driving an overchromed Studebacker? and his freeze gun is exactly like those steroid squirt guns boys at swimming pools covet and use. it all looked so chintzy, more like the tv show, but without tongue in cheek. Uma Thurman got to ham up her siren role but again it was like the tv show. so the tally is, 2 dedicated scientists mutated into egocentric villains. George Clooney as BW beamed his winning half smile with samurai grace. there were a handful of shots where he had no lines, but the camera had to catch his sexy twinkle. not saying I don't envy the twinkle. I know the costumes have been discussed in the literate world of pop consideration. the molded abs and bums sticking out is a wee bit weird. is it puritanical for Batgirl's molded breasts to have a molded bustier? I, personally, think so. covering up the covering up, yet at the same time highlighting. the 3rd Austin Powers had its moments, tho they tended to stretch on. some nice set pieces with a lot of dull filler. I really disliked Fat Bastard, a pointless, unfunny character. we saw a game show in which a cab driver picks up riders, who answer questions while they negotiate Manhattan traffic. another show purports to make your home safer. well, it is like this: a household is set up with cameras, then a B&E expert breaks in. the deal being that the victims will get the latest security gimcrack for submitting to this crud wink. the thief breaks, literally, in and scours the house destructively. obviously the show pays for breakage, but the thief showed no regard for, say, a sentimentally prized coffee mug or such like. and what about the paintings that were taken. reality takes prisoners. today Erin and I watched Shanghai Nights with Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson. Chan's choreographed fights are fun to watch, and he's a good straight man. I happen to like Owen Wilson. I kinda like any actor who don't give a shit. also, yesterday, saw some of I can't think of the name of it, but Chris Tucker replaced Owen Wilson, anotehr good pairing. finally there was a hour or so of college basketball. Erin and I were reading while we watched, and we took a walk during. basketball looks like such a tepid thrill now. I guess I'm no longer amazed that someone six foot a lot can manage to stuff a basketball into a basket. oh, we also watched a team trick shot billiards competition between US and Europe. the announcer says one guy is known as Maestro and another is The Wizard. the aesthetic is so foreign to me. you know how you mind gets twisted when you think of the Michael Jordan of shuffleboard or whatever. there's no reason why basketball would be more unimportant than shuffleboard or billiards trick shot competitions. it's just foreign. I recently read an account of a cricket match. the terminology was completely recondite for me, even tho it seemed so populace inspired. I almost feel I am not watching enough tv, because the culture is percolating but I'm not witnessing.