Monday, January 05, 2004

OK, time for some real reporting. According to ET online, Britney and Jason Allan Alexander wed at the “Little White Wedding Chapel” on the strip. By the afternoon they were seeking an annulment. Spears’ publicist suggested that the couple had taken a “joke too far”. Seems like meltdown material to me.

I’m hesitant to offer an opinion on Dogville as I’m never sure whether films truly stink, or whether I’m not evolved enough to “get” them. But I know a good film when I see one – this Dogville was not. It didn’t stink either. Instead it just pretentiously plodded along making its grand points about the human condition blah blah. For the first half I was quite OK with this because I had somehow got it into my head that it was ending at chapter six. When I discovered another THREE chapters were to come, man, that was bad.

But how do I back up my gut dislike? Certainly not with a coherent argument. Instead I’ll offer up a few things that got me goin “ewwww”. Firstly, the creative design (is that the term) of the whole thing kinda shat me. I’m assuming here that Lars was aiming for some kind of theatrical honesty. A raw, barely mediated cinema experience. Just us, the actors and the camera. But really, the whole thing was incredibly complex – brilliant lighting, wonderful camera-angles and subtle special effects (all very expensive). It wasn’t “honest” at all. It looked awesome, but I don’t see how showing a chalk outline of a building has any more artistic merit than showing a building. It’s just more affected.

After seeing Lars gradually break down Bjork (and countless others I’m told), the slow process of reducing Nicole to a corpse-like lump seemed all too familiar. I found it quite upsetting that the rape scenes were by the end so blasé, although I take Elanor’s point about the processes of desensitization that go along with any kind of violence. Maybe my point is more that I found it irksome that violent rape became something mostly symbolic; a symbolism laid on thick with all the references to “apples from the tree” with “juices flowing” etc. Sexual violence in film should never represent anything but sexual violence! Listen to me all you pretentious directors into reckless symbolism!

I really don’t know what else to say. Surely my strong dislike was based on more than two flimsly points… Luckily I can’t follow this through because it has now reached my self-imposed deadline to start my thesis, but I will say one more thing. Elanor, my theory that James Caan was sposed to represent God TOTALLY has merit.

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