Thursday, May 29, 2008

Distracting Pompadour!

That's my two word review of Indy 4.

No, seriously, hold on, lady, we're going for a ride.

I'll start where everyone's left off, as we're all in not so tacit agreement on the thing which does not work:

The A Number One fiasco of this whole ordeal, the script choice, can be blamed on Jabba himself, George Howard the Duck/Star Wars Christmas Special Lucas, through and through. His rejection of four different scripts, each penned by a consecutively more renowned screenwriting hotshot, was his first mistake, never mind the fact that Spielberg gushed for Darabont's draft. If you're not listening to STEVEN FUCKING SPIELBERG when deciding on what script to use for your update of a perennial favorite, you're beyond all rational consideration.

So, that being the case, Jabba Lucas sent Boba Koepp on a mission to find the flimsiest story arc he could to suit Lucas's need to, I guess, computer animate a few more prairie dogs for infantile comic beats.
Seriously, is that it? Did Darabont/Gaghan/Shyamalan/STOPPARD not include enough opportunities for prairie dogs to houtini like Jawas? Seriously?

Never mind. I'd made my peace with that awhile ago. When I first heard they were even bothering, post sunset-riding-into after the Cavern of the Crescent Moon, my reaction was "why?".

I went in with low expectations, and had to deal with the lack of a story, the lack of much dramatic momentum (even Temple of Doom has a dramatic appeal), lack of real danger (mostly). In short, I had the same problems the rest of you have had.

Spielberg had to be tied to this project kicking and screaming, and it must seem to many like he just gave in and said what the heck, it'll be fun.

On to what's good:

IT IS FUN. Ahem. Aside from all those caveats, everyone performs well, and Spielberg makes this thing fun to watch in spite of all Lucas's attempts to trash the experience for us.

I've never seen this sort of thing happen. A director of unmatched skill, energy, boyish enthusiasm and heedless talent steps up, takes a bad script and decides he's going to make it fucking DANCE. And that's what the film does. The script is mechanical, Spielberg isn't. Spielberg's task this time around is to wander through a mechanized cave of Lucas/Koepp's booby traps, and he sorts them the fuck right out.

The drag-race segment is one of the coolest intros I've ever seen to a movie. Spielberg's camera keeps developing that scene and every subsequent scene in such an exuberant visual crescendo I wanted to applaud the showmanship alone.

I didn't feel like it was an exercise for him. He seemed to be having fun he couldn't have working on films like Munich, an infinitely better film though that may be.

There are other good things I could say about it, there are other bad things I could say about it. I wish Spielberg had directed the Star Wars prequels, because he has a better eye for incorporating CG with actors and an overall palette than Lucas ever will (admittedly, the ending drowns in CGI, falling apart almost before it starts rotating)

The first three films in this series are too imbedded in my consciousness to be altered by the flaws of this film. If the SW prequels had been anywhere near this good there'd be many less bruised and bleeding fanboys out there.

I had fun.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

No Interviews Please

In my doldrummy vacation time, I've read a lot and watched the news. No, really.

This is a fairly dark corollary to this week's most famous political blunder:

"He'll be shot, though, that's his problem. If Jack [Kennedy] knew he was going to be shot, a black boy must know it too." Invited to suggest a motive for Obama's persistence, Vidal offers "Curiosity. Even - dare I use a word never used in American political life any more? - honour."

That's from this Guardian article, and I sure as hell hope Vidal's wrong.

This could be a bad sign though:

Friday, May 23, 2008

Yes, Please, Eject Your Preachers from Our Govt.

If the vetting of these two candidates requires the repudiation of two preachers, one a severe anti-American leftist, the other a nutjob standard-issue Religious Right End of Days Christian Zionist, we're already on our way to a better four to eight years.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Early Creepy but Legal Productions Out-take...

Really? A Pandemic?

I thought the year 2000 was way behind us, and I guess I don't go clubbing in Europe much, but seriously?

I agree that trance sounds great when you're on something, but good lord.

Go play the vid at the bottom of that article and you'll see a few thousand people unified in their own lack of discrimination.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

In Principle

Hillary Clinton has the support of "white voters" over Obama? You mean, Obama has a problem getting the support of down home thugs and corn-pone racist jackasses?

Yeah. Actually, he really, really does.

Let's not pretend this ain't still the same world it was before so many of us Baracked the vote.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Ready Ride

You have to discover how long you can live in heartbreak and uncertainty. You have to know how to get to the other side of it. I watched my father lose to it, bit by bit, day by day. Better to go through it now and see the other side, than end up on the losing side. That's the side I've seen, and I must cautiously remember where I came from.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Want Tickets

Also, I'm the only Gay Eskimo that likes Tom Waits, I think.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

So THAT's the sound of "Stupid House"

This is fun, but not entirely trustworthy.

A Message to Red Democrats

Got nothing against Hillary. Really don't. I understand her need to win. She's a Clinton, after all. She may be the more practical candidate, but what it boils down to for me is that I'm not a Reagan Democrat, not by a damn long shot, and I would like the chance to finally, at long fucking last, vote please god Rock-me-Amadeus for a liberal candidate, even one that comes somewhere close to liberalism.

As bad as the economy is, as troubling as the war is, I'm for literacy, personal freedoms and intellectual curiosity. The conquering of current traumas, foreign and domestic, can only be truly achieved with an overall cultural goal on the horizon. That goal could help us find a harbor for this sinking boat. We've needed some form of striving; indeed, some possible (perhaps mild) elitism has been called for, for a long, long time. That may not be truly inchoate in Obama (or it might be), but it surely isn't in you, Hillrod

Hush, now, poor woman. I would've voted for you with little trouble, and slept better at night with you in office than the wretched Rovian surrogate we've endured for eight years, but I prefer even the most scant possibility of childlike vision over gas-tax pandering and appealing to our fears.

Not hedging my bets on it, but it's time to at least roll the dice.