Thursday, February 28, 2008

To the movies

As a kid my favorite get away was to go the movies every Saturday and Sunday. I loved the old Frank Sinatra in Pal Joey or An American in Paris with Gene Kelly...two of many that I still love to revisit. But then there are the Brando classics like his role as Emiliano Zapata staring along with Anthony Quinn or the movie the Ugly American. That book shook my life when I first read it and Brando brought it to life on the screen. In these times it is more DVD than movie theater...very casual as I make my own popcorn or Dinner Theater style with a meal in front of the TV. My problem is I have trouble finding DVDs in say Mandarin or Spanish without a lot of sub-titles. Sub-titles take away from the mood the raw language puts you in. I have great memories of queuing up outside of a movie house in Hong Kong or Shanghai. There it is not unusual for people to bring food and drink into the movie house. That is where I first experienced Zhang Yimo and Gong Lee as the dynamic movies team the once were. Recently I viewed Ang Lee's latest work Lust,Caution and all I can say is WOW! Ang Lee gives us a variety of raw experiences that left me feeling a need for pain to validate my ability to love...really it gets into your brain in an intoxicating way and makes you feel confused right to the end. A must experience since it is not only viewed by also experienced.
Tonight I watched Michael Clayton understand how Ms. Swinton earned her award. Michael Clayton was only one type of janitor portrayed...others took it to another level cleaning up a big mess in a way that left me wondering--is this where Delta Force goes after the war? A few weeks back I viewed Eastern Promises and for the second time on the screen Viggo had me on the edge of my seat. Again the reality of brutality...does it really exist in current bet it does this is about things that really happen. There are new DVDs coming out that I want to see but I still like to use my Blockbuster freebies to revisit old faves like Lawrence of Arabia or Dr. Zhivago. I love it when an actor knocks me over with the credibility that exists in the character they portray. Being in character is what acting is about...leaving yourself and becoming this persona you are portraying. There are actors in the theaters and on the stage that are so very good.

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