A Few Things.

1) Weather can be about as interesting a topic for writing as it is for conversation, but “interesting” is how I'd describe what we've had lately, unbearable heat and humidity breaking down into crazy storms. Before my workday ended on Friday, it got noticeably dark outside, like our skylights went pitch black. Then it sounded like a few spurts of hail followed by pouring and then suddenly, like someone turned a faucet, it just stopped. It's been doing that on and off for hours.

2) Inglourious Basterds is the best thing Quentin Tarantino has done in years. He gets back to the essence of film as an art form where every note on the soundtrack and every sound effect and nuance is deliberate and imposing, even little things like the sound of milk being poured into a glass. It's bloody and violent, though in some ways not as graphic as his previous films, with the exception of a few key scenes that go way beyond some of the graphic stuff in his early work. The film is broken into chapters, and a series of loosely related tales in Nazi-occupied France gradually build into a collision course of mayhem and murder. There are unexpected cameos, and great moments of stylish humor. Brad Pitt is hilarious as a Southern lieutenant, especially when he displays real talent playing a Southern American trying to speak Italian. The film has many layers, and there's a phenomenal sequence in a movie theater during a Nazi propaganda film in which we're reminded that we're also sitting in a movie theater watching the equal and opposite version of what they're seeing. It's just brilliant, and an instant classic. Oddly enough, all the stars I expected to shine did so in much smaller doses, and there were a lot of newcomers or lesser-knowns who stole the spotlight, especially Christoph Waltz. That guy was one of the best quietly menacing villains I've seen on screen in a long time, cool and calculating, his mind five steps ahead of his enemies. The tension is palpable. You know his wrath is coming, but you don't know when and there isn't much you can do about it. Add him to the stock of Tarantino players, and keep a sharp ear out for vocal cameos from two classic Tarantinians....

3) I'm regretting scheduling a 9:15 AM dental cleaning right about now. The problem with scheduling these things six months in advance is that I never know what my band schedule might be, so I make the appointment early just in case I get booked and have somewhere else to be later in the day. It's fun seeing my old college buddies and easy to lose track of time. At least I live close to the dentist and honestly the hygienist does most of the work; I can just lie there and maybe take a much-needed nap. When I'm done there, it will be on to my uncle's apartment to see if my folks need any help selling his stuff. So on that note, I bid you a fond arrivaderci, and good night.


Blogger Lorna said...

It's our expectation tht we'll see Inglorious Basterds this week, eif we don't go to see District 9 again.

8/23/2009 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Krispy said...

I think I may have had my hopes too high for District 9. I left the theater thinking "Eehhh ... OK ..."

My hopes were high for ...Basterds, too, and Tarantino exeeded them. Easily his best film since Pulp Fiction. Better than the Kill Bill films, which were very good themselves. This was the first time in a long time that I went into the theater with high hopes and expectations and didn't feel let down at all. In fact I was thrilled. That 2 hours and 45 minutes of my life just flew by.

8/24/2009 6:12 PM  

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