This is my last day off for a while. Sure, I’ll have days where I won’t be at work, but after this week those will be spent doing my homework and writing for my classes. They begin on Wednesday and Thursday. I’m excited.
Yesterday I lounged around my apartment. Had a sandwich at Subway. Had a coffee at B&N while I flipped through magazines (I read a very good report on social networking in The Economist). Met up with Zack and had sandwiches at Potbelly’s and then we saw Edge of Darkness with Mel Gibson and Ray Winstone. It was a very strong flick that we liked a lot. I’ve heard it compared to Taken quite a bit, but the comparison is very superficial and unfair to make (they both involve fathers hunting for justice–that’s it). In Taken there was a ticking clock that propelled the narrative. Liam Neeson’s character in that flick was trying to save his daughter who had been kidnapped and was being sold into sexual slavery. Edge of Darkness involved Mel Gibson’s character unravelling the mystery surrounding his daughter’s death (and to a degree her life, since it was apparent that they had quite a bit that they weren’t sharing with each other). The pace of the latter movie was much slower, which suited the nature of the story (the two hour film was based on a BBC series of the same name that lasted for several hours, also directed by Martin Campbell). The first film was about rescue and, to a slighter degree, justice (Liam Neeson’s character ignored a lot of wrong things on his journey to get his daughter back and there was no sense that those wrong things were going to get corrected past the people along the way that he killed) while the second film was all about justice (Mel Gibson’s character wanted to avenge what was done to his daughter as well as the other’s hurt along the way). Mel Gibson did a great job and while I’m sure folks will say that the flick failed because of the amount of money it made (or in the thinking of Hollywood, didn’t make) it was very well done. I think that Gibson saw the way movies were going to a certain degree when he did Signs and that’s one of the reasons he took time off to direct Passion of the Christ and Apocalypto, both to satisfy himself artistically and to show how adept he was as a director by picking some very difficult films to direct (while Apocalypto is a very streamlined action flick about a man trying to save his family-and a civilization at it’s end-by doing it completely in an antiquated language and then having it be successful showed that Gibson was able to handle difficult challenges and still make flicks that people went to go see). He saw that the start run flicks were starting to die, only to be replaced by “high concept” which really means franchise movies that have very little story/ character involvement and involve more special effects/ product tie-ins (see the piles of crap like Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen which beyond making very little narrative sense and having very little human implications, are also very stupid).
Sad sign of the times, for the most part good movies don’t make a lot of money, so film studios don’t want to take the time/ money to try and make good movies. They will instead spend four or five or six times the money it takes to make a good movie and make a steaming pile of crap where computer generated things blow up other computer generated things because it will make a lot of money.
So, I’m not going to waste anymore of today banging away on this journal entry. I’m going to get busy enjoying the bliss of having nothing important to do today.
More later …