Saturday, February 18, 2006

Random notes

Two bonus thoughts on Movies and the imagination:

1. There is a tone of acting and style that most movies and virtually all television shows pitch to that is neither real nor especially stylized. Most of my countrymen are vastly more comfortable watching this pitch that real or stylized. I am the other way. I think the median pitch works for certain things, say romantic comedies, but I find both real and stylized to be much more interesting.

2. It occurs to me that no two people agree what "pretension" means. I provided the definition I've used as well as some synonyms that Tim Lucas suggested. Merriam-Webster provides the following possibilities, "1) an allegation of doubtful value, pretext. 2) a claim or an effort to establish a claim. 3) a claim or right to attention or honor because of merit. 4) an aspiration or intention that may or may not reach fulfillment. 5) vanity, pretentiousness." It also offers ambition as a synonym. The meanings of none of these definitions match the last and even whether it sounds complimentary or pejorative. Do any two people mean or understand the same thing when they say or hear this word? Could it actually be the single most meaningless word left in the English language?

The '70s were better. They just fucking were. I watched Michael Ritchie's Bad News Bears and it's just better in every way... but most just in that, now we're all wussies ways... Sure, they gross things up with a porta-potty sequence, but they cut Kelly's smoking and Buttermaker giving the kids real beers at the end and racial slurs and everything else that makes it feel real. Hell! They even cut out the booger eatin'!!! And this wasn't some hack, this was one of the founders of modern independent cinema; not some prude, the director of Dazed and Confused. The '70s were just better!

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