Some Nashville Faker
There was a moment when I was watching Sean Penn’s Into The Wild where I seriously thought about walking out on the film. Well, there were a lot of moments that made me want to walk out. I don’t understand how some critics can blast a beautiful film like Andrew Dominik’s masterful The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford as a poor man’s Terrence Malick while heap praise upon Into The Wild. Did I see the same film as critics like Robert Wilonsky did because Into The Wild is a mess of film that wants to be a Terrence Malick so fucking badly. I’ve never seen such an over stylized and pretentious film by such an established filmmaker. I mean, Penn has only made a few films as a director, but speaking about his career in general, but the film just feels as if Penn went nuts in the editing room with all of the cool effects and transitions programs that his editor must’ve had on his computer. Split screens, zippy montage after zippy montage set to all of our favorite clichéd road trip songs. Tremendous and groundbreaking filmmaking to say the least!
The film never worked me for a couple of reasons: one, that scene where Emile Hirsch’s character turned down having sex with Kristen Stewart’s character; that’s the biggest bunch of bullshit I’ve seen/heard since G.W. Bush said that we don’t torture prisoners. And secondly, I think the guy, whose life story was the basis for the film made a connection with nature and found peace in nature. I never got that. I mean assumed that, but what I got from the film was that Hirsch’s character was a guy who traveled the American southwest, hung out with some hippies and old timers and spouted off a bunch of lines he read in self help books. Hirsch’s performance is all right and all and he lost a lot of weight for the part, but his performance just reminds me of those smug assholes that think that they’re better than me cause they’ve read “Crime & Punishment” and recycle. I already know that I’m a semi illiterate piece of shit, I don’t need a film to remind me even more that I should reading books instead of watching Jack Hill’s Spider Baby and my teen Nick jams. And how can it be a film about isolation and loneliness with loud rock music playing all the time? I don’t know.
Into the Wild is a long, boring trip into the abyss of nothingness with some good performances hidden in the muck of self-righteous and gimmicky visuals. It’s a ham handed attempt to be a poetic film, but Penn’s script is what keeps it from being the free spirit that the main character strives to be. The screenplay is so structured and predictable. Aside from the film’s final act, the script forces the film into this structure where the hero runs into some one who’ll provide some advice and in turn, the hero will provide them with advice after two or three scenes where our character is alone and isolated. Into the Wild becomes what a film dreads, dull and boring.
Oh wait, I sent a resume to one of the companies that produced it. Um, never mind, Into the Wild is totally awesome; best film of the year.
And you see, that’s why I haven’t been writing as much lately. I don’t know if people who get my resume, google my shit up and read this nightmare of angst, contempt, and, animosity towards particular films. Of course, I could take the advice of “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then say nothing at all,” but where would that leave you guys? The handful of random people, literally the handful of you who may read the mess while at work or killing time on your iPhone? You’d have no content or worse, you’d go to some other blog that encourages and supports proof reading and the use of sassy photos of all your favorite stars and perhaps even feature MP3 exclusives without the DJ drops. There’s the punch line, dudes. That’s the punch line.
It should be noted that The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is even better a second time around. As opposed to getting lost in the cinematography and the production design, I was stunned by Brad Pitt’s performance. It’s his best work since True Romance and 12 Monkeys.
DVD Beaver reviews the Criterion edition of Malick’s essential Days of Heaven. It can be purchased directly from Criterion here. Man, I’ve been talking about Malick too much lately. He’s like the Rachel B of filmmakers around these parts.
Speaking of Rachel B, well not speaking of Rachel B, it’s a mere mention, but that’s beside the point. What I was going to say since Rachel B has been MIA lately aside for the news that she’s going to be on a couple of episodes of “Chuck” with a “Senior Spielbergo” esque Adam Brody. Anyways, what I wanted to say that I have a new semi replacement celebrity crush, if you couldn’t tell by the photo above, it’s Michelle Williams. I can’t explain why, but a couple of weeks back, somebody mentioned her to me and it just clicked in my head. She’s cute, she works with good directors on a semi regular basis, looks good as both a blonde and a brunette. And she’s held up a lot better than some of her other “Dawson’s Creek” cast members. It was either her or Lacey from “Rock of Love”. So, if things get a little Michelle Williams centric, you’ve been warned.
So, the other day, I saw Clark Duke of “Clark & Michael” and said to him, “Hey, I like your show.” Now, I’m wondering if he knew that I meant “Clark & Michael” as opposed to “Greek”? May need to call up Robert Stack for this one and dust off those “Unsolved Mysteries” graphics.
Speaking of sort of Michael Cera, Superbad is coming to DVD on December 4th. Just in time for the holiday season. So if you’ve got a frat guy or a teenager or a just any guy in general on your list, can’t go wrong with Superbad. It just should be noted that if you’re going to go to a party with a game plane to speak entirely in Superbad quotes, it’s not going to win over the ladies. You’ll impress the dudes more often than not and let’s be honest, one is going to run out of material after about 10 to 15 minutes.
“The Office” is still funny, right? I’m laughing a lot, but I want to make sure that everybody else is still laughing as well. I just appreciate the fact that the humor is being spread all through out the cast. It’s now become a neck and neck and neck race between Toby, Kevin, Creed, and Darryl as the real funniest character on the show. All of those characters have had gut busting moments in the first two episodes. I also have to admit that the PB&J storyline isn’t that bad after all is said and done. It’s not ruining the show because the show is still funny at its core.
Although, I think I’ve reached the point where I can successfully make a break from my addiction/problem with “Heroes.” I was sucked in the first season because of the storyline and I needed to know where it was going to go. The acting never won me over. The production design never won me over. The dialogue never won me over, but the construction of the whole first season was brilliant. Now, that the new season is a few episodes old and I haven’t really watched any of them, I think it’s the perfect opportunity to part way with the show. Despite being a fan of her work, I don’t believe that Kristen Bell being on the show can keep me around for the rest of the season. The point of television or at least what I believe it to be, a form of entertainment and what’s so entertaining about watching a show week after week that just upsets and frustrates me? Sure, it’s material, but I don’t want to yell at the TV anymore. Yelling at the TV just isn’t fun anymore; it’s another reason why I never watch sports anymore. I’ve spent much of 2007 attempting to reduce stress levels and not watching “Heroes” will be another step to being stress free.
Other keys to a stress free life include:
-Drinking Mexican Coca Cola
-Wearing 100% cotton Flannel shirts; there’d be no wars if everybody wore this cuddly fabric.
-Watching The Holy Mountain every couple of months.
-Listening to Crystal Castles’ remix of the Klaxons and Artie Lange on the Stern show.
-Signing my petition to have the city of Santa Fe Springs or at least all of the buildings surrounding demolished to add additional lanes to the 5 freeway.
And finally, I don’t understand why LA people are reading this mess instead of heading over to the Landmark on the Westside to watch Blade Runner: The Final Cut. I’ve only seen two version of Blade Runner: the International version and the first director’s cut from the early 90s and to be honest with you, I didn’t detect any real differences between the various cuts. To be honest, The Final Cut is an awful a lot like the first director’s cut except that the special effects look a lot better. Not to mention, the film is a completely different animal on the big screen. I found myself getting distracted by the little details that filled the frame and the lines that fill J.F. Sebastian’s face. It’s a beautiful film to watch especially in the 4k digital projection at the Landmark. It runs through Thursday, so keep the car running.