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November 11, 2011

Indie flicks and Christmas lights

Movies. Hey, independent film industry, let's talk, shall we? I understand that it's part of your arty street cred to make downer movies with vague, ambiguous endings. All those staged, hazy shots of naked women and chairs and people in bathtubs together get spliced into a trailer that looks inviting and cozy and highbrow but really it's just all that time you spent at film school watching porn that's creeping into your scenes. It's been this way for a while now. I keep thinking you'll surprise me but you're all starting to look the same. I'm going back to formulaic Hollywood blockbusters, but I'll be back, so get to work on a happy ending, OK?

Earlier in the week I saw Like Crazy, which got rave reviews at Sundance and I was very excited to see it until I realized that it's a true indie film, meaning poignant scenes with no real resolution and lots of unresolved longing, so if you have just had a minor heartache and want to feel like walking into traffic while singing along to dark Cat Power ballads, then yes, go see this movie.

Yesterday my movie buddy and I caught an early showing of Martha Marcy May Marlene Laurie Soba Frankie. The Other Olsen is a really great actress and she is beautiful, as evidenced by the filmmaker's habit of lingering on her naked and semi-naked form in scene after scene. It has another prototypical indie ending and after leaving the theatre you want to sob into a bucket of chicken. My advice to the world is that if you plan to make a movie about a young girl who joins a cult, at least pick a cult that makes some sense. For example a yarn cult or a religious cult or a cult of Clooney. But if your cult is just a bunch of mixmatched kids making up dumb songs for a skinny weirdo, I am not buying it.

Nonetheless, it's always good at the movies. Going to the movies is such a splurge for me, and I do it because it gets me out of my head and later I can write clearly. Something about switching from all words to all visuals frees up the mechanics of my brain.

Walking has a similar effect on my body but since I stay in my head during the whole walk it's not the same freeing experience as a movie. Other things that get me out of my head: yoga, Prime Suspect (please don't cancel this show, TV Gods! I love Maria Bello) and pinot with a friend. The beach. An excellent book. Salsa classes, though I haven't taken one in a while. You?

Books. I'm thisclose to getting done. I feel happy and exhausted and nervous and hopeful. We'll see.

Green tubs in my living room. I know it's crazy but I don't care. I want to decorate already, get out my tree and the lights and make everything pretty and sparkly. I still haven't all the way crossed back into holiday shine, it can be a lonely and blue time for those of us with a maudlin streak. But I love Christmas, too. I appreciate that it is a period at the end of a year, the last of one more chapter. It doesn't matter how this one ended, the best thing about a closed chapter is turning the page and reading something brand new.

Soba avec teddy bear.

Posted by laurie at November 11, 2011 12:18 PM