20 August 2011

I Think I Write, I Write About Thinking I Think About Writing and Black Swan is Prominent in the Ensuing Words


It all begins with a single word. And it's your choice. Every time.

I walked down to the local high end bookstore but it smacked of desperation. So I barely browsed before making my way back home.

Earlier I'd watched Black Swan (2010) which I'd previously seen in theaters right after it's release. I wrote about back it then and I have kindly linked this sentence to that post. Neither oldest daughter nor the wife would watch Black Swan with me. I couldn't even dig up the cat, who you think would at least give it a chance, but I guess she too had heard things.....Maybe I should ask them all why they don't want to ever see it. Maybe not. The little woman generally likes the same type of films I do. (Given that she is taller than I am, if she is in fact the little woman I must be the tiny man.)

I just had a thought....There, it passed.

But seriously, what if this post is some reader's introduction to my blog. They'd likely never come back. Actually that wouldn't make them any different then all the other poor saps who've chanced upon my musings. Amusing.

At one point in the Black Swan there's a knock at the door and Barbara Hershey says: "Who could that be?" That's a question that is posed far more often in films and on television than it is in...well, I was going to say "real life" but I hate referring to anything as "real life" as much as I do calling any part of our existence the "real world." It's all real. People in college are always being told about going out into the "real world" as if a university is the set of some Disney film and they're Peter Pan or Tinker Bell. It's all real, I tell ya, every second.

Obsessed characters often make for terrific films. As in Black Swan. Or Zodiac (2007) or Vertigo (1958) or JFK (1991). After all who wants to watch a film starring a perfectly happy well balanced individual who manages work, family and a hobby in perfect harmony? Obsessive personalities are often creative geniuses, or great athletes or detectives or of course total lunatics. In films you can have a combination genius and lunatic for a most heady brew. It has been said that there is a fine line between genius and insanity. I suppose. But there is just as fine line between raving mediocrity and insanity. Hell no, there isn't, there's no line at all.

I liked Black Swan again. I made the choice going into viewing number two that I wasn't going to look for meaning in it. Sometimes some people (me for instance) spend too much time analyzing a film. The experience derived from spending the hour and forty minutes should suffice. If you find your mind continually drifting back to the movie, I'd say that's a very good thing indeed. But you needn't force it. That is making artificial the organic experience of cinema. I was sitting in a theater once and a person behind me asked the gent she was with what he had thought of Dreamgirls (2006). He replied: "I don't know I haven't finished deconstructing it yet." Oh my, was all I could think. Oh my, oh my.

Darren Aronofsky directed Black Swan. He's a man whose film I'd not seen until last December. Having now viewed them all I am a fan. If you're reading this Darren -- and why wouldn't you be -- I'm sure that sentence has made it all worthwhile.  He does not rely on half measures to tell stories. But he never crosses the line that do so many directors who subsume the story within their own ego or technical mastery. Peter Jackson comes to mind. He's the bloke who took the King Kong story and turned into a video game for 14 year olds.

Natalie Portman won the Best Actress Oscar for Black Swan. I thought Jennifer Lawrence in Winter's Bone (2010) was far more deserving, but whenever someone has been known to put in a lot of training and weight reduction or gain into a role they get serious extra credit with the academy.

Again I was really impressed with Mila Kunis. (That's of pic of her in the film to the left of this sentence.) Besides being a real dish she's a damn good actress and did as much as possible with her role. My ex celebrity crush Winona Ryder got a lot of mileage out of her role as the washed up ballet star too. And since I'm saying such nice things about performers.... Vincent Cassel was (please feel free to insert your own laudatory adjective).

It's foggy, breezy and cool outside (inside there is no breeze or fog and the temperature is quite comfortable). I find this weather condusive to reading, film watching, writing and chasing my poor beleagured wife around the house. It's also nice for drinking tea and feeling quite all right about the world which I do right now. I'm not doing summersaults or popping champage corks, but the world seems a nice enough place to live in. What a wonderful alternative to say Venus or Neptune, neither of which serve ice cream or show movies or have soccer games or Mila Kunis.

Ya know, I just can't figure out whether words are vastly overrated or underrated. Hmm.

1 comment:

Tudor Queen said...

I thought "Black Swan" was one of the most disturbing films I've ever seen - and I'm very glad I saw it.