Alas, even Roger Ebert uses the term (or phrase) “near-perfection” in his near-very-good review of The Dark Knight Rises. Seriously, what does perfection have to do with art? As if there is such a thing. As if it is remotely helpful in any way. Why can’t we let things be what they are without judging them? I didn’t think it was that hard to figure out that these things are eternally subjective and subject to change. Based on my one viewing of TDKR, I think it’s brilliant. Perhaps it’s very pretentious to say, but I don’t think people get it yet. Yes it’s dark and somewhat gloomy, but it doesn’t have to be what you want it to be. People can spend ages talking about Citizen Kane but it isn’t necessarily everyone’s piece of cake if they have no context. It will take at least a couple of years for TDKR to sink in. And like CK, there are a lot of interesting things to talk about with the movie.
You do briefly wonder, do I want to love certain things so much that I miss their flaws? That I lie to myself? The answer is clearly no. There have been far too many disappointments in my life. And similarly, countless times when I was very pleasantly surprised. My expectations have no effect on what I think of a piece of art. They only affect that initial feeling of satisfaction or disappointment or surprise. Naturally, since I’m good at finding awesome movies, I like practically every film I watch. How do you know that you need food to survive? All it takes is one day of not eating to realise it’s not a good idea and get your appetite back. Similarly, one bad movie puts you back in the mood for a non-stop series of great films. You can eat good food all the time and know that you’re eating really good food. I take risks, but clever ones. I’m just good at telling whether a movie will suck balls or not. It’s very easy. IMDb rating timesed by director plus the square root of general idea of purpose (what genre or type of movie is it, does it sound lazy or ambitious, what are people saying about it). Cast is irrelevant (unless Gary Oldman is in it). Plot is irrelevant (unless it involves flying elephants).
Studios seem to like getting hot-shot MTV/retarded-Pepsi-ad directors to make their big superhero movies. No wonder those movies are all so flashy and dumb. Once in a while, they get a nerd like Burton or Raimi and it goes well. Or they get an acclaimed up-and-comer like what’s-his-face who’s been doing those cute little Batman movies. They think the most important part is the fancy editing and colours. But no. Directors don’t even really do that part. That’s a big team of special effects artists and editors and sound people. You need a director with restraint and vision. Shyamalan can be really great but he seems to need someone to play off of, to guide him or challenge him. Lately, he’s been going in circles.
It’s funny, this perpetual feeling of ineptitude. I suppose that makes me human. It’s a nice reminder. You’re replaceable. You wouldn’t even get close to Olympic standard in any area. For any given talent, there are millions better than you, more passionate and hard-working. Listen to old podcasts and wonder what I was thinking. Maybe I should randomly start uploading them. What has the last year of my life been about? What have I done? What have I achieved if anything? Well, that’s kind of silly. I’ve been through lots of changes. Hard to keep track.
Anything else major to report? To my loyalist of listeners? I don’t know why I’m putting off becoming a teacher for so long. I guess I’m just making excuses. Catching up on sleep. My habits have been pretty bad lately. Usually getting to bed by 4am. And then up at 2pm unless I have some tutoring to attend to. Isn’t it pathetic that I can just say this but can’t seem to do anything about it. I suppose where there’s a will, there’s a way. Wow, that should be a famous quote or something. Aren’t I clever? Just make sure your heart is open. Figure out what you need to do. Oh well, interesting times lie ahead. It’s all like a kind of test. We’ll see what I’m made of. If things pay off. Or if I was wrong.
Caught glimpses of Singin’ in the Rain. Reminds me of how far I’ve fallen behind. How do you go all the way without rejecting people, becoming an elitist? Why haven’t I followed through? The energy and excitement. The dancing and colours. All of the classic scenes. And the utter indifference and obliviousness of a large crowd of typical strangers. Do they understand what they’re missing? Or do they have real lives that I just can’t understand? Will I ever get a chance to be important? To someone, anybody? How do you prove to yourself that you matter, have some kind of impact? My skills are of the age. I’m not even second best. Except for the things that no-one else does. So focus on those. Invent your own ideas. Then nobody can touch you.
Funny Olympics. All those arbitrary flourishes in the gymnastics in between the double flips with a triple twist. The spontaneous bursts of hip hop and latino flavour followed promptly by side steps to get yourself snug in the corner. Then the heavy breathing and determined concentration. Apparantly for that part they can take their time and stop performing. The morbidly boring commentary. So tame and correct. Devoid of personality. The person that cries out of disappointment that they came second. The person that cries tears of joy when they get a bronze medal. The Australian volleyball coach with some kind of strong European accent. I suppose Russia might have an Aussie coach in that case. A young gymnast has a sparkling costume to complement the various straps on her hands and feet. I like the consistency. What does it say about humans that injuries are this common?
The weird sports that make you wonder why a list of about 20 more obvious and famous sports aren’t recognised at the Olympics. Juggling, dancing, music (instrumental virtuosity), mathematical and scientific skills, cricket, frisbee. I find it hilarious that beach volleyball is somehow an Olympic sport. I eagerly await beach soccer, beach tennis, beach gymnastics and one day similar variations for other popular locations, such as underwater table tennis, street weightlifting and Moon shotput. After a week of randomly watching 8 different Foxtel channels, no medal tallies. Seriously. Wtf. The exquisitely bad camera angles chosen for some sports. The repetetive editing that shows zero understanding of the nature of a sport. An impressive lack of good perspective. Table tennis is filmed from what appears to be a helicopter in a nearby suburb. Perfection is boring. Give some random kids some cameras and let us choose from those angles. Then we’re set. I might actually see what’s going on.
Do the horsies get medals? Do we know how they’re treated? Aren’t they cute! My summary of the Olympics would be: what values are we teaching our children? What world is this when we get excited for 2 weeks, only to not remember anyone from even the most recent games? What does it mean when sports become more about the various random particularities of the rules that have been picked up over the decades than about the triumph of the human spirit? Dear Olympic athletes, your life is more than this. If you don’t win, you’re just as valuable. If you win, enjoy it. But it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a champion. It means you won. At the time. Under the circumstances. You know if you made great personal achievements or not, and it shows from the way you behave. It has nothing to do with winning. Life isn’t about winning. Kids know this and we teach them otherwise.
Setting WordPress to French…
Getting exposure to lots of French words: cool.
Having almost every single word in each of my posts underlined as if they were mispelled: priceless.