Archive for the ‘Movies’ Category


Sundance Starts

January 20, 2010

Going to the Sundance Film Festival is probably a lot like having a second child: You think the whole experience is going to be great, you’re going to end up with this great result and all the work will be worth it. But, your body has forgotten the excruciating pain it went through the first time. You’re forgotten about all the weight you’ve gained, how big your feet have gotten, the heartburn, the bed rest, that baby ripping open your asshole, etc. And then it all happens again and you wonder why you ever thought this was a good idea. You blame everyone around you for your discomforts, you curse the incompetent, nosy doctor, and your husband suffers from all your negativity. Then, when it’s all over, you’re left with something that takes a shit-ton of work and, frankly, just isn’t all that great. Plus, you have to do a bunch of kegels to get your coochie back to normal.

(I’m not sure how that last part fits in with Sundance…but there you have it. My analogies just keep getting better and better.)

And so it starts. Yesterday I went to pick up programs for Scott and I. All we wanted was a tangible way to scroll through the films we’re going to see as “members of the press” but the volunteer at the Salt Lake office gave me such a stink about it. I get how they’re trying to be “green” and everything, but I know when I get to Park City there are going to be programs strewn about on every surface imaginable. They always print 12 billion programs and then give Salt Lake 120.

Then there’s the ice on the sidewalks, the bus drivers that don’t know their way around town, the press screenings at odd hours that always conflict with each other, and the lack of decent food. Then again, there’s free tea and bagels, a really really helpful and nice press staff, and ample opportunity to see all of the films you need to. So it’s very stupid to complain. I get that. It’s just so easy to complain when it’s 12 degrees below and you’re hungry.

Now it’s off to Park City to finally get a program.


Von Trier, You Crazy

December 15, 2009

I finally got to see Antichrist today. And while I’m not ready to really formalize my thoughts on it yet, I do want to say that I’m very glad I knew a lot about the film before I watched it. People talk a lot about “spoilers” and how reading reviews before seeing a movie can bias your response. I think this is a valid point of view, but with films like Antichrist that are clearly meant to shock a response out of us, I prefer to go into the experienced informed. That way I think it’s much easier for me to step back from the narrative (and blood, guts, and sex) to actually take in what’s really going on. I read a lot of reviews before I watched the movie today, talked to friends about what to expect, and put the film on at home in case I found I needed a break to collect myself.

As a result, I was not that shocked. Hey, Lars! … Denied! When what seems to be his greatest desire for the film is nullified, I actually think the movie had a lot to offer. By going into it informed I avoided the backlash reaction I’m sure I would have had in an effort to assuage my fears/disgusts/confusion. I had the same reaction to Dogville, which on second, third, fourth, etc. thought turned out to be quite the masterpiece, in my mind.

I think the poster makes it clear that there’s some base intentions on the part of the filmmaker. Whether or not I find the sole desire to shock totally inappropriate or not is something I need to figure out. But, speaking of the poster, my husband Scott does something cool over at his blog where he analyzes posters free from the bias that the films they represent can create, from purely a graphic design standpoint. I’m curious to see what he thinks of this strange one.

I also watched Nicholas Ray’s¬†In a Lonely Place tonight, which formally is totally the opposite of Antichrist, but shares a few common themes like the trust issues that develop between lovers when ¬†horrible deaths are involved. I want to just keep watching movies until Christmas, but I have this terrible Uncle Tom’s Cabin paper due that I have to force myself to write.