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Monday, December 28, 2009

Sherlock Holmes and the Curious Case of the Sub/Text (Spoilers)

I am not a fan of Sherlock Holmes really at all; I think he's annoying. However, I like Robert Downey, Jr. and Rachel McAdams, and I think Jude Law is a good actor even if he is very, very pretty, and I found the trailers intriguing because they were so NOT what Basil Rathbone would approve of. And I am glad I saw the film.

It wasn't perfect, but it was very good, and Guy Ritchie's take is a new one. Fanboys all over Topless Robot and Great White Snark have been getting their boxers in a bunch over Holmes' boxing, etc. scenes, but the fact is that the character's written (read: canon!) history mentions not only boxing, the use of pistols, swords, and staves, but also some martial art whose name I have forgotten. Holmes was young once, and so was Watson, and that is what this movie is about. The fanboys also disapproved of the movie's villain being an occultist, whining that this was incongruent with Ritchie's purported portrayal of Holmes as the thinking man's action star. All I can say to this is, Hello? Do you know ANYTHING about Arthur Conan Doyle? The man was an enthusiastic spiritualist, dabbled in theosophy, and believed in fairies. I wouldn't have been surprised to see Aleister Crowley make an appearance in this movie (word is Lord Blackwood was based on him).

And, yes. The gay subtext is there. And I am glad! There was always a homoerotic undertone to the Holmes/Watson relationship, YES FANBOYS EVEN IN THE BOOKS WHICH YOU HAVE CLEARLY READ. There are interesting homosexual notes in a lot of Victorian literature. Book!Holmes is a misogynist and a sworn bachelor who happens to be very attached to his doctor in a time when homosexuality was illegal and immoral, and when homosexuals were considered "inverted" people. Movie!Holmes is clearly jealous of Watson's engagement and apparently attracted to Irene Adler. Being that the character of the bisexual is rarely found in Victorian literature, movie!Holmes presents a predicament. Personally, I read the film as portraying Holmes as a straight man enduring the changing of a deep friendship. There are plenty of guys who are jealous of their friends' girlfriends or wives, and they aren't always gay. Current American society has a real problem with male friendships, something I would like to see change. Women are allowed to link arms, even hold hands, in public; allowed to hug and kiss (if only on the cheek); but men are restricted to shallow friendships and shaking hands. Now, the addition of Irene Adler might have been to give movie!Holmes a beard. However, the filming of their scenes together (particularly the first scene Irene appears in and the scene in which she is not very heavily dressed) are shot to show that Holmes IS looking at her with desire. If Ritchie intended to really go whole hog and have the Holmes/Watson slashationship, surely he's smart enough to have shot the Irene/Holmes scenes without any indication of desire on Holmes' part. RDJr's facial expressions and movements are part of his acting, obviously, and they show that the character wants Irene. So I found her presence+Holmes' jealousy of Mary, Watson's fiancee, to=Holmes as a straight man who wants his working relationship and friendship with Watson to go on unhindered and unchanged.

Of course there is the possibility that Holmes wants very much to be straight but is not, and therefore attempts to look at Irene in the way that a straight man would. It is also possible that Watson, a character portrayed as very neat and dapper, is using his engagement to Mary to force himself into a heterosexual role. It is worth noting that book!Watson is a reputed womanizer, something which men have occasionally used to make other men think they're not gay.

At any rate, I think that RDJr. and Jude Law were very aware of the homoerotic things going on in between the lines of Conan Doyle's writing. Jude Law is a big Holmes fan and has read most of the works, I believe. I think that they did intend to act a fine line between a closeted gay male relationship and a straight male relationship, and I think they did it well. If viewers see their portrayals as gay men, that's great. If they see them as straight men, that's good too. Either interpretation works toward acceptance and tolerance.

...I can't be the only one who thought the hog-factory-conveyor-belt scene with the Holmes/Adler/Watson sandwich was totally erotic. Can I? o.O

ALSO these bear repeating (and repeating, and repeating):

Hot DAMN, former drug addict!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

To lie upon the earth and smell it

I very much miss living in a place of natural beauty. I grew up in Merritt Island, which contains two rivers and one very broad "creek" (basically a wide, long, marshy area with some deep water in the middle), and which is five minutes from the beach; the place has two wildlife refuges and numerous small parks; it's part of the National Seashore and the Great American Birding Trail, and is in general really rich in trees, shrubs, flowers, bushes, water, birds, sunshine, and all the other fabulous things that people come to Florida for.

Then I moved to Tampa. Now, having been here for five years, I am very fond of Tampa. I certainly like it better than Orlando, Tallahassee, and Jacksonville (I've never been to Miami). It has several excellent record stores, one very good bookstore, some nice clubs, and the best beer hall in the state. I love my university in particular, but I will be the first to admit that it, its surrounding area, and Tampa in general are, if not hideously ugly, at least stark and unimaginative. And with very little greenery. Yes, there are the token oak trees with their Spanish moss (my favorite natural accessory), but the university's only real green spot is its botanical garden. And Tampa as a city is even worse off. There are very few parks, and the ones that do exist are far-flung and not always well-kept (the ones in my old neighborhood--o hai Nebraska Ave--were generally rife with old needles and newspapers. The downtown area likes to brag that it has the city's smallest park (it's basically just a gazebo and a square of grass). What's to brag about, exactly? Keep in mind, kiddos--I studied abroad in London, a city with a park in every neighborhood. The private university in town has a nicer campus than mine, and it's on one of the channels which give Tampa's Channelside its name, but the campus greenery still isn't a patch on northern universities, or even FSU.

The extreme borders of Tampa fare a bit better. Old Tampa Bay runs along the expensive neighborhoods in the south and provides an amazing view and plenty of green growth, and the far northern and outer edges are somewhat woodsy. But the university area and the mid-city are just...barren. Concrete and wood, and little effort to provide breathing living growth. Neither cultivated nor wild green places.

My hometown isn't perfect, by any stretch. Merritt Island has more than its fair share of dying strip malls, chain restaurants, and Hummers. But if you want to, there are ample places to go which provide beautiful views, the smell of trees and water, and relative quiet. Maybe because it's half the size of sprawling Trampa, maybe not. Cities far larger than Tampa manage to keep vast green areas intact and usable (see: every major city in the world). I would like to see our city's Powers That Be think about things other than getting the Super Bowl and whether or not the Lightning are going to win this year.

People need parks and open places.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Yes, yes, the theme song is absolute shite (actually, I sort of want an explanation for that, since every single one of Joss Whedon's other themes are marvelous). And yes, season 1 started off pretty effing slow. And yes, Eliza Dushku, the star, is not the most interesting character or the best actor.


I am still really, genuinely sad that Dollhouse has been canceled. And I think that the episodes airing right now--held over from November--are ace. I'm glad Joss is going out with all guns blazing, because this show deserved its chance and hello? Firefly being the exception (to everything ever), Whedon shows typically take a season to really get rolling (Buffy S1vs.S2, come on! No contest!). As its short run winds down, the show is busting out twists left and right, and I, a gullible lass, am falling for and loving every one. The guest stars with familiar faces are welcome and do great jobs (hai@River'n'Wesley!), and oh, sweet science, did anyone else faint from laughter and awe when Topher imprinted Victor with his personality and then talked to himself about how hot Summer Glau was? JESUS CARPENTER. Enver Gjoka took one of Whedon's hallmarks to new heights of awesome. I AM missing Amy Acker, but word is she (and Felicia Day!) will be in the series finale, which will give use those muchly needed answers about "Epitaph". Alan Tudyk veers between scenery-chewing evil and understated evil, and does both impeccably. And oh, Adelle, Adelle! Razor-sharp and vulnerable at the same time; Olivia Williams is perfect.

Ok. Gushing done. I guess I can be glad that at least now with no Dollhouse to work on, Joss will have plenty of time to devote to the Dr. Horrible sequel and Buffy S8. But still...I'll miss the Dolls.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


Sooo I'm waiting for a meeting to start (the story of my life at work) and so I am going to do one of these things that make a blogger seem more human to their readers. If I have any readers. Ganked from Dianne Sylvan's blog.

5 Items in My Bag

1 – a crappy old Motorola cell phone
2 – a copy of The Saxon Shore by Jack Whyte
3 – a variety of pens from back when I worked in a restaurant
4 – a change purse made out of owl fabric
5 – a moleskin notebook

Titles of 5 Files in My Documents Folder

1 – levantineneandertals.doc
2 – thelock.doc
3 – firewoman.jpg
4 – hammertimenazis.gif
5 – PRAAAAY.jpg

5 Things on My Coffee Table

1 – a variety of coasters made out of old disks
2 – 2 remote controls
3 – DVD: The Wire and Turner and Hooch (my roommates' tastes vary WIDELY)
4 – A NetFlix envelope
5 – Sadie's Can o'Doom

5 Things in My Fridge/Freezer

1 – a bag of mixed veggies, frozen
2 – half a cherry pie
3 – Publix-brand 2% milk
4 – homemade strawberry jam
5 – ice pack

5 Things on My Desk

1 – a pencil sharpener shaped like a cat (guess where the pencil is inserted??)
2 – a whole mess of magazine clippings, printouts, etc. for scrapbooking purposes
3 – copies of The Skystone, The Singing Sword, and The Eagles' Brood
4 – an empty flowerpot with a mermaid painted on it
5 – candles

5 Songs With the Highest Playcounts on My iTunes

1 - "Eden Echo"--Kamelot
2 - "The Last Sunset"--Conception
3 - "Everybody Here Wants You"--Jeff Buckley
4 - "Find the River"--R.E.M.
5 - "Parallel Minds"--Conception

Wednesday, December 09, 2009


I will make no bones about my desire to see The Princess and the Frog this weekend. I like Disney, and I like old-fashioned hand-drawn animation.

And I also want to know if there's a reason other than impending poverty why Disney has produced merchandise for Princess Tiana showcasing two different dresses. I can't be the only one bothered by this! 10-year-old girls of the Internet, cash in! Back me up! Every Disney Princess (TM) gets ONE iconic dress. One "The Dress". Just one. Belle has the glorious yellow gown; Aurora has the pink gown; Cinderella has the blue gown. Tiana has the...blue AND green gowns? Presumably, from what I have seen of movie stills, the green gown is The Dress. Why, then, are they creating merchandise, posters, and cardboard standies with her in the blue AND the green gowns? (Srsly guys, I have seen two different standies in two different theatres featuring two different dresses.)

Disney, this is just not on. It has to be the green one! Powder blue is Cinderella's color! In future Disney Princesses (TM) posters, mugs, compilation DVDs/CDs/videogames, we assume that Tiana will be wearing her pretty lily-pad-inspired green dress. So why all the double marketing?

My boyfriend, of course, thinks I am blowing this out of proportion. He does not understand, being a boy and more of a Miyazaki fan, the import of The Dresses. Go to Google Images and type in "Aurora". The page will be filled with pink. The same happens for Belle (yellow) and Cinderella (blue). The core of Disney Princesses (TM) are defined by their Dresses. It is true that every girl has several different outfits throughout her film, but The Dress is what she is identified by and what the dolls, etc. are marketed with.

Snow White is an interesting case. For one thing, she only has one dress--The Dress--and that gown is multicolored. Then again, Snow White is a weird film and a weird character. Nevertheless, it is worth pointing out that her concept is not replicated by any of the other Princesses. The lesser princesses/women of Disney--Jasmine, Ariel, Mulan, Pocahontas, Meg--likewise have their own iconic colors: turquoise, a fishtail and some seashells, red, tan, purple. Disney recognizes a simple formula for making their girl characters different from one another and easily recognizable. That Outfit, In That Color.

So this is my ultimatum, Princess and the Frog. Give me a damn good reason why Tiana gets two dresses, or tell me that she doesn't.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Sex, sex, and rock'n'roll

Because I think it's such fun that women are only featured in hard rock magazines if they're hot (eg, Revolver's annual "Hottest Women In Metal!" issue), I am going to objectify every male metal artist whom I consider attractive. Consider yourself warned. Also, I encourage everyone to also read my own post about the hot women of metal. We are equal opportunity objectifiers here.

10. Bjorn Gelotte. Guitarist for In Flames. Originally the group's drummer, Gelotte now wields his axe in all directions and sports an interesting twist on heavy metal follicular fashion: close-cropped noggin, hefty beard. Looks good to me!

9. Kiki Loureiro. Guitarist for Angra. Jesus H., does this guy look like a model or what? He's so pretty, he almost didn't make the list. Then I remembered his guitar chops and reconsidered. Dude can shred and has insanely Pre-Raphaelite hair. Doubleplusbonus!

8. Oliver Palotai. Keyboardist for Kamelot. Maybe it's unfair to have more than one member of the same band on a list, but it's their fault for having more than one ridiculously attractive member. The very Germanic-looking Palotai, unfortunately, is involved with the equally gorgeous Simone Simons (to the despair of everyone everywhere who has eyes), but that does not mean we can't enjoy his lean mean keyboarding arms and well-conditioned hair.

7. J.D. Cronise. Guitarist and lead vocalist for The Sword. Certainly one of the better doom metal vocalists, and attractive in a way rather similar to Dan Watchorn (see Number Two), Cronise makes the list chiefly for his skillz at dropping lyrical hints to literature, including nods to George R.R. Martin, H.P. Lovecraft, Arthur C. Clarke, and Norse mythology.

6. Janne Wirman. Keyboardist for Children of Bodom and Warmen. Good-looking in that clean, Nordic way, and a little calmer than his manic bandmates, you also gotta figure that as far as musicians go, groupies aren't too interested in the guy behind the keyboard (unless that guy is our Number Eight). So all love for this list's resident elf impersonator, Janne Wirman.

5. Henrik Danhage. Guitarist for Evergrey. Homeboy's got all the metal good looks: long hair, an acceptable beard, plenty of tattoos, soulful eyes. Okay, maybe that last bit isn't the norm, but it works for him, particularly when he's ripping your ears out with his guitar.

4. Steven Wilson. Porcupine Tree's lead singer and guitarist. Far too often heavy metal dudes follow a pattern--lots of hair, lots of leather--which is by no means bad, but can get old after a while. For the nerd girls in the bunch, Wilson is here for all your underwear emergencies with his stylin' wire-rim glasses and Cromwellian bob haircut. He also often plays barefoot, which is kinda cute, and makes music to fuck with your head to!

3. Mikael Akerfeldt. Singer and guitarist for Opeth and vocalist for Bloodbath. This guy's prowess with both death metal and clean vocals, as well as his flowing locks and stellar facial hair, cements his status as one of heavy metal's hottest dudes. The fact that Metalocalypse's Toki Wartooth is based on Akerfeldt doesn't hurt either.

2. All of Priestess, especially Dan Watchorn. Hot in a hairy, Canadian way--lots of beard!--these guys rock. Hard. Mikey Heppner's rocky-road vocals might not be guaranteed to make you come in the way of our Number One but it's still pretty sexy (in a hoarse, Canadian way).

1. Roy Khan. Past singer for Conception, current (and, presumably, future) singer for Kamelot. Trained as an opera vocalist, so you know he's got pipes. Also, rockin' bod much? Yes please. It's too bad he's married, but really, no one thinks about that when he's working up a sweat and straddling microphones onstage.
Honorable Mentions: Dave Mustaine (Megadeth), Tore Ostby (Conception, Ark), and Gabriel Garcia (Black Tide...jailbait FTW).

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Charge of the Goddess

For an academic side-project--'cause graduate school just doesn't give enough homework!--I've been researching Goddess religion in historical and contemporary contexts. This means scouring the university and public libraries for all the classic texts on neo-Pagan and Wiccan revivals, including Starhawk's The Spiral Dance, and Drawing Down the Moon by Margot Adler. Drawing Down the Moon in particular is an excellent text, which has survived the test of time far better than Starhawk's book (it helps that it was updated and re-released last year), and is more interested in the sociology, anthropology, and psychology of Paganism, rather than providing a witches' handbook or how-to guide. Adler is sympathetic to the Pagan movements, as she considers herself a Wiccan, and though this is clear to the reader, scholarly research and varied viewpoints balance the text.

Thus far, it seems that Goddess religions in general and Wicca in particular are not exactly what I thought. I confess, I'm a fan of The Craft, Charmed, Practical Magic, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and while all are good in their ways, none come terribly close to depicting the point of Wicca or the traditions as they stand today. It is easy to be drawn in by candles and incense, ceremonial garments and daggers, lovely chalices, hand-crafted wands, moonlight rituals, and altars or shrines to ancient goddesses--and while what Adler calls the "trappings" of Wicca are significant, she emphasizes, as do many of the Craft interviews throughout the book, that the items used in ritual are symbols. Isaac Bonewits in particular has noted that physical symbols such as pentacles, incense, and lighted candles are useful for instigating and maintaining altered states of consciousness, which is one of the intents of Wicca: to open and broaden the mind in order to perceive truths which a person might not otherwise be attuned to. Much of what is termed "magic" is done by the mind; methods for honing, conducting, and releasing this magic include forms of yoga and Reiki, meditation, hypnosis and trance, and dancing (and some Wicca do advocate the responsible use of hallucinogens, though I'm not certain how widespread this is).

What really stood out to me, though, is not the physical, rational explanations for magic or for the pursuit and practice of magic. The point Adler makes that struck me is that a Wicca practitioner can worship the Goddess without belief--the "religion" (though as I read more, the more I tend to view Wicca as a group of "traditions"; covens and circles are autonomous, following no set liturgy and having very loose group structures, depending on which path they follow, and the bulk of Wiccans in North America are solitary) leapfrogs out of any sort of conflict with "faith" as it is used by most mainstream religions today. Wicca allows for atheism, polytheism, monotheism, pantheism, agnosticism, and secular humanism; it does not grate on intellectuals, people who are hard scientists, or people who consider themselves Christians or Jews. The worship of goddesses is flexible enough to allow nearly any mode of thought or belief, or none at all. I find that this goes back to the significance of symbols within Wicca--the Goddess may be viewed literally, as an Earth Mother figure, or she may be seen as an archetype of and for powerful women throughout history, and a practitioner may worship the idea of her, rather than using prayer and supplication in more mainstream ways. The ideal of the Goddess is appealing to men and women who desire strong, intelligent, sensitive, self-possessed and self-controlling female models; the thorny question of historical goddess worship and matriarchal societies is not really a question for debate at all once you take the view that the concept of a goddess religion is what many Wiccans are interested in. To be sure, there are many reconstructionist paths and some traditions which hold to be gospel-truth that at some point in human history there was indeed a Golden Age of Goddess religion, but the thing about Wicca is that a practitioner is not required to subscribe to ANY of these ideas. If a person is drawn to the archetypal Goddess as an icon or avatar of themselves, or what they could become, and looks upon worship of the Goddess as a way to a more enlightened mind, a more open soul, a more responsible, responsive, thoughtful, and fulfilled life, then that is what Wicca will provide.

I guess my point is that there is no need and no call to look on the Goddess as the literal creator of the Earth, as there is in Christianity. For many, the Goddess is an ethereal concept of higher thought, not an actual being, and so rather than restricting practitioners to worrying about what she is up to and whether or not their actions please her, and if she supports the Republicans or the Democrats in the upcoming election, followers of Wicca are free to form her as they will and utilize what she represents to achieve spiritual experiences.

Wicca and other neo-Pagan traditions are by far the most sympathetic religious paths I have encountered thus far.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Cool Jew

Okay, okay, you asked for it and here it is: My Favorite Jews.

Fran Drescher
Andy Samberg
Jon Stewart
Jeff Goldblum
Eve Ensler
Willow Rosenberg
J. Robert Oppenheimer
Zac Efron
Herschel Krustofsky
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Sacha Baron Cohen
Al Franken
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Jake Berenson
Amber Benson
Adam Goldberg
Judy Blume
Andrea Dworkin
Moon Knight

You might be interested to know that about half the starring or supporting cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is Jewish, including Amber Benson, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Alyson Hannigan, Michelle Trachtenberg, Seth Green, and Danny Strong. Jesus Christ!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

The good, the bad, and...well, there's just the two today

The Good:
Drag Me To Hell, Sam Raimi's new flick, is good. Seriously good. Not as good as the Evil Dead trilogy (because really, what is?), but leagues better than, say, Spider-Man 3. The Chin does not make an appearance, but that sweet Oldsmobile does, and who can possibly complain about an ancient Gyspy crone cursing Alison Lohman's cute little blonde Aryan self? Justin Long is charming as always, and it's frankly nice to see a caring, devoted, trustworthy boyfriend in a horror film, isn't it? Furthermore, as in the case of Ash, Lohman's character reaches a certain point in her harrowing now-demon-cursed life where the getting flung around the kitchen and being used as a teething ring by said ancient Gypsy crone just becomes TOO MUCH--as, I venture, it would in reality--and she starts fighting back (hint: it involves a kitten!). And therein lies the glory of Raimi's films: they push the hero/ine so far that eventually the character becomes, not quite a villain, but an anti-hero/ine. Watching this movie, half of you wants Lohman to escape the curse and the other half is almost glad when she does get dragged to Hell, and that's reality for you; how far can the survival instinct go before the person trying to survive turns into a self-serving asshole and slaughters kittens, debates whether or not to curse a dying old man with a nebulizer, robs graves? Drag Me To Hell, like most of Raimi's horror films, examines the line between physical and spiritual/personal preservation.
The Bad:
Terminator Salvation, the newest installment in the Ah-nuld robot vehicle, is bad. Really bad. And what's worse is that it has potential, but staunchly refuses to exploit it. I went in expecting that Marcus, the cyborg character, would be the fulcrum of the story, the turning point of the war between the machines and the humans--plainly, the future: that the film would acknowledge humanity's debt to and reliance on machines, and would find a workable future in hybridization. Nope! Instead, the movie may be summed up as "the difference between us and the machines is the beating of the human heart" (and if you want to hear that in Christian Bale's Batman voice, so much the better). Backward! Hypocritical! In short, so ten years ago. Salvation is a sad entry into the Terminator canon, marginally better than T3 but so much less than the first two. Skip it and reread Donna Haraway's "Cyborg Manifesto" instead.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

It's finally time

Yes, children, the hour has arrived: your faithful author has decided to undertake the CDAB: the Comprehensive Disney Assessment Blog. Over the course of this post, I will lay out once and for all my personal favorite Disney films.

The films will be divided into four subcategories: Classic Disney, Modern Disney, Weird/Forgotten Disney, and Live-Action Disney, with each subcategory containing my top five films. Let's go!

Classic Disney (1930s-1960s)
1. Fantasia (1940)
Peter Pan (1953)
3. Lady and the Tramp (1955)
4. The Sword in the Stone (1963)
5. Sleeping Beauty (1959)

Modern Disney (1970s-present)
1. Robin Hood (1973)
2. The Rescuers (1977)
3. Beauty and the Beast (1991)
4. Lilo and Stitch (2002)
5. The Emperor's New Groove (2000)

Weird/Forgotten Disney (any era)
1. Pete's Dragon (1977)
2. A Goofy Movie (1995)
3. James and the Giant Peach (1996)
4. The Three Caballeros (1945)
5. The Great Mouse Detective (1986)

Live-Action Disney (any era)
1. Cool Runnings (1993)
2. Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971)
3. The Parent Trap (1961)
4. Mary Poppins (1964)
5. The Mighty Ducks (1992)

Whew. That was tough. Really, really tough. You have no idea. Disney is awash in great films that I left out--Mulan, Hercules, The Black Cauldron, Cinderella, the third Aladdin. The remake of Freaky Friday was honestly pretty good. The Fox and the Hound, Piglet's Big Movie, and of course the mighty Toy Story franchise...clearly I should have made the lists longer. Le sigh.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Jesus is always the answer--what is the question?

Questions to which 'Jesus' could conceivably be the answer:

+Who is the current president of the United States?
Who is the missing fifth Baldwin brother?
+Who is your asshole father who sold you to some redneck in a trailer outside Biloxi for a case of Busch Lite twelve years ago?
+Who is Kanye West?
+Who was the fifth Beatle?
+What do you say at fiveAM when you stub your toe while trying to let the dog out?
+Who owes the thirteenth apostle twelve bucks?
+What is the average flight velocity of an unladen swallow?
+Who is L. Ron Hubbard's father?
+Which has a longer coastline, Jutland or the Yucatan?
+Who does a really good Gandhi impersonation?
+Who created the Salk polio vaccine?
+Who shot J.R.?
+Who shot JFK?
+Who wrote The Female Eunuch?
What does Foucault's pendulum show?
+In what region of the world can the nua-nua bird be found?

Question to which 'Jesus' is definitely not the answer:

Who is the son of God?

Monday, March 09, 2009

Blue balls

No, no, my significant other does not suffer from any sexual dysfunction involving testicles (I make sure of that, ha-cha cha-cha). However, I have to admit I was left wanting more by Watchmen.

(Plus, hello, did you see Doc Manhattan's junk enough? No? Eighteen penis shots in one film just not enough?)

I love the graphic novel, and I wanted to love the movie--I mean, hell, I went to see it at midnight in IMAX; I wanted it to be another slam-dunk along the lines of 300. Maybe mythologizing history works better when that history is already half-myth, or maybe the graphic novel of Watchmen is simply more complex than 300--duh--but something about this film experience left me cold. Visually it's amazingly evocative of a graphic novel, and the fight scenes are intense, the soundtrack is fun, the opening credits are full of information and simultaneously enjoyable to watch, the casting is mostly good (particularly The Comedian)...so what's the problem?

No idea. Maybe too much of Billy Crudup's dick. Maybe too much of Matthew Goode's bronzer, Malin Akerman's hair, Patrick Wilson's aviator eyeglasses and impotence. Maybe too much reverence--that might be it. So faithful an adaptation leaves you with an embalmed feeling.

After a few days' thought:

I have decided that my main problem with this movie is not that it's too close to the graphic novel, but rather that it doesn't necessarily pick out the points of the novel which are most salient and most critical to understanding what Watchmen is all about. I mean, Nite Owl and Ozy and all the rest AREN'T superheroes. THAT is the point that it seems like Snyder and Co. didn't get, and which does not translate onto the screen.
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