Friday, August 27, 2004

Sadly, Summer's Ending

Today was the end.

For the next 10 months, I'll be working. Boo Hoo! I love summer vacation! I completely wasted the day by going to see two movies: The Village and Garden State. I had seen The Village before (totally worth multiple viewings). I was still jumping at all appropriate parts; it still left me decimated in tears at the end. As far as I can tell, the film is technically perfect (tight framing, fantastic use of color, spine-tingling sound effects), but the storyline and the themes are what resonate to me. The story is just so human--wanting so much for the ones you love--and the built in disappointments that furrow the path of hope. And yet you want to hope; you want so much to hope; in the face of all that's ugly or hard you hope. Aren't we all sometimes just blind readheads (terribly cute) with enough tenacity to get through anything ... or don't we at least want to be.

Garden State had some of the same. It was also very good--not perfect and not by any means a masterpiece, but solid. (Do I sound like a nut in wondering if drug use is as commonplace as that show made it? No wonder one of my students was so incredulous and certain that I had never lived when I told her that I had never smoked pot.) Natalie Portman really came into her own here, breathing life into my flatlining interest (which is exactly what her role is designed to do; she did it stunningly). Well, this one is pretty new out, and I would hate to spoil plot. But let me note how much I liked the cinematography--effective framing, long shots, and of course whatever you call it when you lock on one person and let the world speed around him. Isn't that the exact equivalent of being absorbed in your own tragedy or of spacing off.
Soon I hope to post something about some of the reading I've done this summer. But I think I'll spend the rest of the evening working on Il nome della rosa, which I fear I will not finish before school starts Monday.

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