Speaking as the business affairs simpleton that I basically am, wouldn’t it be better for Comcast to buy 20th Century Fox rather than Disney? Because then Fox, a studio that had a fairly grand history from the 1920s until a decade or so ago, would continue to exist and generate its own material instead of being folded into Disney. That would be preferable, no? At the very least from a spiritual standpoint. Keep blaring that Fox fanfare!
David Edelstein in Paris, posted sometime this morning: “It was thrilling to be in the Musee d’Orsay and in the presence of so many Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings I thought I knew well. But I’d never stood close enough to examine their brush strokes. Alas, you can’t get too close. It’s not the guards — they weren’t much in evidence, and many of the paintings had some sort of glass over them so no one seemed worried. I mean all the MOTHERFUCKING ASSHOLES WITH THEIR iPHONES AND CAMERAS telling you to move so they could take a photo and move on to the next painting and take a photo.
“I saw few people gazing on paintings unmediated. And how upsetting it was to be looking at Van Gogh’s self-portrait or ‘The Card Players’ or ‘Blue Dancer’ and have to crane my neck to see over the cameras held aloft with images of the paintings on their tiny screens. Lucy decided to photograph people photographing — an interesting project, for sure. But it’s not why we were there. Sometimes I hate people so much.”
“Cheap Date,” posted on 6.6.13: “I’ve been staring at Van Gogh paintings for decades, first at the Jeu de Paume and more recently at the Musee D’Orsay. And each new time I get a little more emotional. Tears almost well up. The guy was so unrespected, so unloved, so unknown, so broke his entire life. Anyway, yesterday I re-experienced the usual-usual in front of ‘Le Nuit Etoile’ (Starry Night). I put my face right up to it and it looked so vivid and shiny and fresh and alive with dozens of little micro-globs or oil paint sticking out a millimeter or two from the canvas, like little micro-sculptures or micro-moldings. It was as if Van Gogh himself was alive in the next room.”
Posted by Stephen Farber, 9.9.17: “In Ian McEwan‘s The Children Act (A24, sometime this fall), Emma Thompson plays a High Court judge who specializes in family law cases. And she delivers what has to be one of the most nuanced and moving performances of her entire career. The film is also notable for showcasing another superb performance, by up-and-coming actor Fionn Whitehead (Dunkirk). But his is essentially a strong supporting role, whereas Thompson appears in virtually every scene.
“Adam Henry (Whitehead) is suffering from leukemia. Doctors believe that a blood transfusion will save his life, but Adam and his parents are Jehovah’s Witnesses, and their religion prohibits the mixing of blood. Since Adam is only 17, he is not deemed an adult, so he cannot decide for himself what he wants to do, though he claims to share his parents’ religious beliefs. Fiona hears the opinions of doctors as well as Adam’s parents, but then she makes the unconventional decision to visit Adam in the hospital, where she discovers an extraordinarily intelligent boy who happens to share her own love of music.
“Weighing the medical and religious issues, she ultimately decides to save Adam’s life by ordering the transfusion.
“That is far from the end of the story, however. After his release from the hospital, Adam seeks out Fiona, eager to become much closer to the woman who saved his life. Needless to say, this provokes turmoil for both of them. Fiona has chosen not to have children, so the relationship with Adam awakens some deeply buried regrets about her own life choices.”
I’m trying to imagine some kind of professional acrimonious situation in which I would actually try to harm another journalist’s livelihood — his or her access to screenings or festivals, let’s say — or diminish his or her advertising revenue. I’m trying to imagine even considering this kind of ugly behavior, but I can’t. It’s not in me. I’ve never tried to interfere with a fellow journalist trying to find work or generate this or that form of income. I’ve never whispered in an editor’s ear, “Don’t hire this or that critic”…ever.
Are there a few journalist-critics whom I don’t personally like all that much? Sure, a few, but I’ve never tried to harm them professionally. Ever.
This is how I was in high school, actually. I would never put anyone down, or at least no one who hadn’t put me down first. I would never huddle with the weasels in my clique and sneer at some other kid because we didn’t like cut of his jeans. People do this in high school all the time, of course, and then they go on to do it in the workplace. People talking shit about others is a national pastime. Some people can be real vipers when they put their minds to it.
Have I ever acted in an ugly or unbecoming fashion? Yes, I’ve slipped a few times, and I sincerely apologize for this. But I’ve never tried to hurt a fellow journo in the pocketbook. Ever.
I’m mentioning this because a couple of critics tried to do this to me last weekend. They actually called or wrote this or that publicist or film festival or distributor and said, “Please help us snuff this guy out…we don’t like him and we want him dead.” They actually did this. Because they dislike me personally. Which, in and of itself, is fine with me. I don’t like them either, but that’s where it stays.
Worse, there’s one distributor whose ad director, based on my correspondence, may have actually said to one of these would-be assassins, “Sure thing, we hear you, we’ll join your cause.” Words fail.
Aahh, the pleasure of being awakened at 7 am by a grotesque, sputtering, hornet-buzzing chainsaw….some baseball-cap-wearing dude strapped into a nearby palm tree, vigorously and relentlessly slicing off dead palm fronds….eeeyowwawwoowwwaaagghhh! Thanks, guys. Why didn’t Randy Newman mention this aspect?
If you’re unlucky enough to have a grunt-level job of any kind, you sometimes have to get up at 5 or 5:30 am…agony! Which means if you need seven or eight hours you have to crash at 9 or 10 pm…Jimmy Kimmel on YouTube! To bed at 10 pm, up at 5 am, start trimming palm trees at 7 am, lunch at 11:30 am, back to work at noon, back to the garage at 3 pm or so. Take a shower, chill, have dinner at 6:30 or 7 pm, watch some TV, start to droop around 8 or 8:30 pm. Rinse, wash, repeat…over and over with the years dissolving until you’re too old to hack it. It’s a wonderful life. I would be looking into painless forms of suicide before my 40th birthday. Hell, my 30th.
“The Horror, The Horror!”, posted on 9.17.17: “I suffered through a few recurring-theme nightmares in my early childhood. Gorillas, drowning in quicksand, boxer dog chefs walking around on their hind legs and wielding carving knives, frying in the electric chair. But none of these generated the feelings of dread and terror that I developed in my teens and 20s over the prospect of a blue-collar, wage-earning life.
“For many years I was absolutely horrified by the idea of having to get up at 6 am and report to work by 8 am or earlier, and being stuck with a physically demanding manual-labor job, especially in cold weather. My father was an advertising guy who always wore a suit. He commuted on a train and was never expected at the office before 9 or 9:30 am. That, to me, was a civilized, managable approach to work and earning a salary. Grunt-level blue-collar work always struck me as a brutal, punishing activity — the kind of work that was guaranteed to make you feel miserable and frustrated and drive you to drink in your off-hours.
Boiled down, the Donald Trump “make America white again” nightmare — fascistic bully-boy mindset, Putin-suckling, dismantling of democracy, catering to the stupidest sector of the electorate, attacks on press, Charlottesville, anti-immigrant policies, trade-tariff wars, Scott Pruitt‘s destruction of the environment — was ushered in by the failure of Hillary Clinton to run an effective presidential campaign.
Every day I wake up shattered by the spreading Trump miasma, but I also curse Hillary’s name — every damn day. She did this to us. She and her centrist, Democratic-establishment cronies.
I voted for Hillary like any sane person, but she lost because she was a testy, dislikable, highly conflicted candidate without that natural charisma, but more specifically because of nine factors:
(a) The James Comey letter, (b) that awful secretive nature which led to the private email server, (c) nodding with approval as DNC honcho Debbie Wasserman Schultz schemed, rigged & plotted against Bernie Sanders, (d), that entirely justified, 100% accurate “deplorables” comment, (e) fainting during that World Trade Center memorial service, (f) that cackle, (g) those eye bags, (h) choosing Tim Kaine as her VP rather than Bernie or Elizabeth Warren, and (i) failing to campaign more aggressively in Wisconsin and Michigan.
But the biggest killers were the Comey letter, the fainting, the “deplorables,” the plotting-against-Bernie thing, choosing Kaine and the personal-style trifecta — that awful cackle, that braying voice and that testy substitute-teacher vibe combined with the eye bags.
She did this — she allowed the most odious, fiendish, openly fascistic and wantonly destructive president in the nation’s history to seize power and take us all down in the process.
Speaking of unrelated nightmares: http://hollywood-elsewhere.com/2017/08/brief-nightmare/