Tuesday, November 16, 2010
This and that
A friend recently lent us Golden Door, Emanuele Crialese's 2007 film about the immigrant experience in the early 20th century. Combining poetic imagery with the grueling realities of taking a slow, crowded boat to the U.S., the film is interesting and worth seeing, but also a little dull and slow paced. "Deliberate," my friend corrected me when I shared my views, "not slow". I stood corrected (the best approach with my friend). Golden Door is a shade under two hours and is mostly presented in Sicilian with English subtitles. You might want to give this a shot if you come across it.
On the Veterans Day holiday, Alison and I traveled from the suburbs into Philadelphia to catch the latest Woody Allen film, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. We enjoyed the film a lot, though the dark characters and situations (lightened by a little comedy, thankfully) resonated better a couple of hours later than immediately after the closing credits rolled. The film is essentially about the trickiness of hopes and dreams: how we definitely need them to get along, but the danger of taking them too far and allowing them to poison our appreciation of our current realities. Which dreams should we try to make happen? Which are best left as dreams? Could the same hope/dream be life-enhancing if indulged a little but disastrous if we fully embrace it? Through its half a dozen characters, we get some exploration and answers. This is a rich, worthwhile film if you're at all into Woody.
On the TV-on-DVD front, we're currently enjoying the ninth season of Smallville, the show that explores the life of Clark Kent in the years prior to him putting on the red and blue tights and actually calling himself Superman. During this ninth season, however, the Superman mythos is basically in place: Clark works at the Daily Planet with Lois Lane, freuquently runs off to do superhero things, and shoots the breeze with the computer simulation of Jor-El, his late Krytonian father, at the Fortress of Solitude from time to time. All Clark really needs at this point is the suit and cape and a more fully developed flying ability, and the boy-to-man journey will be complete. Anyway, the show continues to be fun, so I'm sure we'll remain aboard until the last episode of season ten, when the curtain will finally come down.