“In Search of Lost Time,” or, My Netflix Queue is Longer Than Yours
I’ve always considered Revolutionary Road the sequel to Titanic — where the young couple, escaping death, go on to get married and move to suburbia, only to find their own little patch of freezing water within. Every time Titanic is playing on TBS or AMC, I watch the entire thing (try heckling the frantic people at the end, feels aweome). I’ll watch any movie I don’t care. The greatest modern currency is time, and I’m a rich bastard. Back to Leo and Kate: Repetitive casting creates subliminal narratives, as the actors (as we know them) have as much to do with their characters as the characters themselves. Hollywood abridges the complexity of love into two categories: 1) The romantically ill-fated, and 2) the d-d-dumb. I’m not being a snob here, I actually enjoy these movies:
You see, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan fall in love in Hawaii or something; then they break up and Tom moves to Seattle and Meg moves to New York City, and they meet again years later via late night talk radio; then Tom moves to New York and they start instant messaging each other using large bulky c. 2001 laptops. Then we go home and slowly hack out popcorn kernels from the backs of our throats.
Then Tom Hanks breaks up with Meg Ryan and hooks up with that girl from Amelie. She’s like “meet me in front of the Louvre,” (in French, duh) and he’s like “okay.” He was in France anyways, coming up from Normandy to save Jason Bourne. I guess I’m sort of meandering, and trying to make a point, which, I think, is that we are all sort of like Proust — slowly compiling our own massive epic using fragments of palpable experience and imagination. I guess maybe I’d want to use the word “postmodern,” but really, what the fuck is that? Now I know this HTMLGIANT crowd is all into high culture and maybe these movies are too mid-brow, so here’s a still from a Fellini film:
Which makes me think “weirdos doing weird shit on the beach,” and I immediate think of the “Give It Away Now” video by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Other “weird shit on the beach” is, of course, that famous scene in The Stranger, which inspired The Cure’s “Killing an Arab,” whose lyrics lend themselves to their compilation album Standing on a Beach.
So now I wanna look into the guy on the cover’s eyes and see someone I know — to continue this saga in my mind. (These ideas, by the way, take from Lawrence Weschler’s ever-optimistic idea that culture and aesthetics are connected, either subliminally or by some other force, all eloquently conveyed in Everything that Rises: A Book of Convergences [McSweeney’s, 2006].)
I kind of see a Johnny Cash- or Iggy Pop-type “crazy” person with a touch of Tommy Lee Jones. Now I’m just waiting for Tommy Lee Jones to play Camus in some biography then I’m set. Or wait, what about just Tommy Lee? That would rock. Is it necessary to write “Mayhem” on one’s abdomen? Does diarrhea need a description? And check out that Hindu/Buddhist tattoo under his navel. Is he making some kind of point? Nah, it’s probably nothin’.