In recovery from Memorial Day weekend withdrawal

Here’s hoping I haven’t forgotten how to write for my blog over the past couple days.

I believe my last entry was Wednesday night, so that would make it a solid [counting…] 4 days since my last entry. And anything relating to my supposed ‘addiction’ to all things Robert Downey.

I went through the usual motions, although it’s my belief that the absenteeism of him from my everyday activities didn’t quite take shape until a couple days ago. It might have been a solid three days before I felt the supposed hold starting to break off a little bit.

I’d considered this and that. Things I wanted to do whenever I got back. The movies I wanted to watch.

What makes things more interesting is that I’d been keeping up with writing under a single pretense.
The next few chapters of my story revolving around Casey & Julian, now he and Alex are getting a little acquainted.

I’m usually the type of person who likes to type things up just because editing freaks me out a bit. I’m in horror of forgetting details or not adding enough to a conversation… that’s why writing for this is so difficult. I’m only able to focus on one dimesion of things: building the unusual relationship Casey and Julian have. Not nearly as strange as it was with Diane, where she finds after their first day meeting one another that he’s going to be someone impossible to forget, two weeks pass and they immediately get into it.

Personally, I was kinda hoping to add a little tension and perhaps to make Julian a provacative observer. Like he’ll see how Casey and Alex move around each other, like the whole magnetism thing that is discussed in “Eclipse”… how they act different around one another, perhaps him speculating that maybe there’s more going on there.
Quite the interesting situation, if only I could find some way to make it work.

I’d broken a lot of rules as it is, but I kinda wanted to try to stick as close to Julian’s character in “Less than Zero” as I possibly can. And I’m not sure if I’m accomplishing that by any means. By most of the dialogue, I can tell that he can be very bipolar sometimes… he’ll be spouting harsh sarcasm, some BS about not wanting to let anyone into his world one minute, the next he’ll be open and aware that there’s something else going on.

Makes me kinda wonder how well I know him, if at all. I’m even crazy enough to consider the possibility of checking for YouTube clips… or heck, skipping through the uploaded movie to watch his specific scenes multiple times in an attempt to study him.
It worked with “Only You” that one crazy night where I had watched it and “Heart & Souls” back to back in that particular fashion, but it wasn’t really studying him then. It was more that it was RDJ’s 46th birthday.

Here’s what I can gather about Julian as of right now as far as defining his character:

Brief Biography

  • graduated high school with high hopes of having a record producing career
  • depressed by Clay’s departure, he and Blair sleep together, but its an isolated incident
  • several attempts are made to start businesses, is loaned money for capital… all of which fall through
  • supplied drugs incessantly by Rip
  • in moments of sobriety, tries to break things off but is pulled by in by the outrageous accumulated debt
  • failures to launch and moonlighting as a male “gigalo” leads to depression and hopelessness
  • alienated friends and family because of inability to pay back loans and stay clean

“High” profile

  • oblivious, acting if nothing is wrong
  • angry, frustrated
  • not wanting help

Sober profile

Wants to make it up to others
Insisting on staying clean

 

The kind of sarcasm I write about him using is very harsh, almost demented at times. I don’t believe he was ever that self-depracating on film

Then there’s the other side of things. Would he really fall over himself, con his way out of rehab to make it to a single person… let alone one he doesn’t know all that well and until a certain point has defied all previous attempts for them to get close to him.

In my mind, I suppose my keeping up with my writing did help me get through the past few days, but there really isn’t any substitute regarding the real deal.
The actor who made all of these characters come to life.

I believe I had had dreams recently, last night particularly where Charlie Bartlett (Anton Yelchin) was the primary focus and I remember briefly a few lines in the discussion he has with Principal Gardner and his mom after Kip overdoses on the pills he gave him…

The first couple of days at the shorehouse, I was reliving bits and pieces of “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”… which was a primo choice for Wednesday. Had such a good time with that movie.
I kinda got my idea for whatever it is that could transpire between Alex and Casey… hinting at that possible relationship while watching Michelle Monaghen in the first couple scenes in the movie.
Not gonna lie, she looks amazing in that movie and the blonde hair does her wonders… not to say she isn’t attractive as a brunette, but not nearly the same.

…hmm, wonder if that shows that I might have a thing for blondes…

So yeah, she’s amazing in the first few scenes of this movie. Then in a couple of scenes later where she and Harry Lockhart share a bed… shoot, I almost combust spontaneously, he’s so cute

Funny thing is, considering how I feel the need to get back into the swing with things with Robert, I’m seriously considering watching “Wonder Boys” tonight… despite the fact it created a temporary riff in what I felt about this character… Terry Crabtree isn’t the greatest character he’s played, I’ll just leave it at that.
Something about that movie wants me to come back for another viewing… maybe to see if Crabtree, in fact, has some redeeming qualities.

On the other hand, he definitely isn’t worse than Jude Law in “Closer”

I have myself under the assumption that there aren’t any movies starring Jude Law that I really want to see. I’d like to see more of our new Dr. Watson in other movies, all for that, but he seems to be in all these oddball type movies. Particularly not ones that do well in the box office.

Strangely enough, it’s as if all of my other strange movie and music choices have prepared me for movies like this.

And hell, I spent that majority of the movie making googly eyes at Jude Law, despite the sheningans he was getting into with the other three characters… and the fact a couple of people watching the movie left the room en progress because they lost interest.

I was with Jude Law literally until the last 15 minutes of movie… during which he committed a single act of domestic violence, slapping his g/f Alice (Natalie Portman), leading to their break-up…
he met her randomly and she inspired something he ended up writing/publishing. Meanwhile, he’s having an affair with his photographer (Julia Roberts), and actually sets her up with Clive Owen’s character by posing as her in a really hot Internet chatroom…

Clive & Jude were literally typing away really dirty to each other for a good 10 minutes… I was in utter disbelief, like “who does that”… let alone posing as a woman as to set her up with another man. So the guy and photographer get married, but she’s having an affair with Jude Law…
by the end of the movie, everyone had swapped partners. The married couple actually stays together and Alice supposedly has died in a car accident or something.

The resident Packers fan said it was probably the weirdest movie he’d ever seen.

It’s funny that, considering the really X-rated dialogue that occurs in a fight between Clive & Julia (when the affair is brought out into the open), the chatroom and the foreplay that occurs between Clive and Alice when she’s giving him a lap dance in a private room as a strip club… a lot of this was bouncing off me and I managed to survive it because Jude Law was easy on the eyes and as the movie nerd I seem to be becoming, I had to stick around to see how the movie ended.

It was one of those WTF, why did I bother with this, type of endings.
And yet, considering all of the above… I took time to think it over, this was a weird movie, but in no way is it the weirdest I’d ever seen.

Fact is: two movies I’d like to nominate as stranger movies happen to be two movies I wouldn’t have checked out if it hadn’t been for RDJ’s involvement.

“A Scanner Darkly” is a psychopathic trip, like you feel like you’re tripping on Substance D while watching it because it’s so out there. I suppose over time, I could make sense of it and it might be as weird as some animés I’d started watching…

“Fur” on the other hand… I would definitely nominate that for the weirdest movie I’d ever seen…
how strange then that I would still prefer to see this a good 10 times to each single time of “Closer”, which I probably will never sit through again…
Robert Downey suffers from hypertrichosis and is still more appealing than Jude Law in that movie…

It’s one of those “beauty on the inside” type of things. You spend time with Lionel and grow to really accept him beyond the outside appearance… you spend time with Jude Law in “Closer” and you find that he’s a pretty face, but underneath he’s a two-timing, sometimes bi-polar twit capable of domestic abuse.

Packers fan spent the movie saying that Jude Law was a 3… I kept supporting his appearance, saying he was definitely a 7 and his personality is a 3…
but I know pretty well that “Fur” was a stranger movie than “Closer” was

I spent some of the time wishing I had brought “Tropic Thunder” down with me… and I spent a little more time debating about what movie to watch to allelivate the withdrawal symptoms once I got back.

I believe I decided on “Heart & Souls” a couple days ago… Charlie Bartlett could follow within the next couple days. Whenever I have time off after 10pm

hmm… I suppose I could also nominate “A Guide to Recognizing your saints” as another movie stranger than “Closer”…
few things are stranger than Shia LaBeouf trying to pull off playing a younger version of a character played by Robert Downey… but that’s only because I know the two actors so well for different roles that I can’t see them finding common ground on a single one

My mom said that “less than zero” was really strange… again, these movies make it look downright normal. Perhaps the only thing that cries foul in the strange department was Rip ringing Julian into working for him as a male gigalo… partying, addiction, withdrawal, overdose… realively normal in comparison.

So Closer is based on a play, as I suspected, seeing the really limited cast of characters… and panned as a good film by critics… yeah, I think I might have missed something.

I still think Julian has more redeeming qualities than Jude Law in this movie…

One thing I’ve noticed with the Twilight series… not sure what it is about those books, but you know how they say “I devoured it in one sitting”… that’s what those books do to me. I start and can’t stop and I can see myself literally devouring the book in one gulp.
I had procured the guide to the series, which includes biographies of all the vampires, werewolves and humans in the series, as well as inspirations, fan art, playlists and such… all very interesting. Should I continue, I probably could finish the book today, so I have to stop for the timing being.

And yet, I have yet to pick up my volume of Sherlock Holmes… haven’t read of it since I finished “Hound of the Baskervilles”… maybe just after that Ohio interview for the internship I decided not to take. I ought to get back to that soon, but then again, I do have quite a few months before the next movie, so I can afford to shelve it for a bit.

There’s just something about Stephenie’s world of vampires that I can’t seem to break away from. Once I start, I can’t stop and it’s something I have to keep feeding on until I’d found something else to preoccupy my time.
It’s a lot different than anything else I’d experienced as far as trends go. The Harry Potter series wasn’t nearly that powerful, but there are few things in this world like what I went through emotionally after reading the first chapter of the first book… no other book had ever gotten me so worked up mere minutes after cracking it open. I didn’t expect that at all, and my God, I just had to see what’s next.

The Twilight series is kind of like dark chocolate the way I inhale and isn’t not really the best thing for you, especially in “New Moon” with Bella’s state of mind being where it is. I’m the type of person who takes it way too seriously and way too personally.
Man, if not for the fact Eclipse was already out and I had both books on me, I don’t think I would have survived the first couple of pages after Edward left… first couple of pages with actual words on them, mind you… I’d have been crippled had I not known that Edward would return at all. Given that there was a third book, it was a matter of “when” rather than “if”

It was quite interesting to read that conversation/interview Stephenie had with Shannon Hale, an author I hadn’t heard of, but seems to be in the same YA genre…
they were talking about how characters behave the way they’re supposed to and how Jacob was a necessity because Edward couldn’t come out and say he was a vampire to Bella, not in his nature (during this time, I was worrying if I was depicting Julian accurately according to the film… he does have it in him to con his way out of rehab, but do it to apologize to a single person he doesnt know all that well… not sure… I have him doing a lot of weird things in my depictions)

Jacob kind exists as a tie to the human world, the one Bella’s leaving behind in pursuit of immortality, being with Edward forever in the literal sense of the word… a voice of reason to counteract everything she believes she’s sure about.
Also kinda works into the editor’s suggestion to keep the series in high school for another couple books…

I came into the books knowing only the following:
There’s a girl in love with a vampire and werewolf.
Edward is clearly the vampire (see the back cover)…

I spent some of Twilight wondering who the werewolf was… maybe Eric or Mike, cuz they were attracted to Bella and were following her around like puppies

Then there was Jacob and I started to guess maybe he’d be the one who was the werewolf coming into Twilight’s epilogue where he tells Bella that “we’ll be watching you” at his dad’s request.

In “New Moon,” Forks without Edward was a miserable place… you feel Bella’s agony reading through lifeless dialogue and rhetoric, the acute pain hard to ignore…
then Jacob comes into the picture and the fog temporarily lifts. He’s helping her heal and he does become a warm spot that you’re always dying to get back to.

Now it’s really getting clear that Jacob is the werewolf. From there, I’m unsure of what my intial state of mind was while reading it… it took a little while to come around when Jacob was showcasing anger towards the Cullens and what they’ve supposedly done…
things are cooled down with him until the moment Alice returns… then we realize that Edward had called the house and Jacob told him something about a funeral… I nearly flipped my lid, like I would be more for getting physically violent because I was so furious at him… Bella shoulda just shoved him in passing cuz clearly time is of the essence.

Eclipse makes things interesting from the book to movie comparisons.
If it were possible, Jacob was more tolerable in the movie than the book… like the scenes where Edward wanted to Bella and wouldn’t let her see him, I found myself wanting to see Jacob as much as she did… then of course he has to say “I’d rather you be dead than become one of them”… let’s just say for me that the movie was a very bi-polar experience and probably the only time I was actually ticked off at Edward and the way he was being ridiculously protective… heck I’m almost siding with the harshest of critics who say he’s controlling

But yeah, it was basically this:
I really am not a fan of Jacob’s for the majority of the series. “Twilight” is just fine because he’s just another guy, not really a romantic rival or mortal enemy… “New Moon” is good up to a point, where he’s opposed to the vampires and trying to keep Bella from seeing/saving Edward…
Eclipse… the book had maybe one exception: the chapter called Fire & Ice where he and Edward have that heart2heart conversation…

Naturally when I found he was narrating the 2nd section of “Breaking Dawn” I threw a fit… because I really didn’t want to hang around with him for more than I needed to.
Always interfering with a relationship out of his control… makes me think about another comment Stephenie makes, even if you told Jacob ahead of time his efforts to win Bella would be in vain, he wouldn’t do anything different because that’s who he is as a character.

And when he and Edward start getting along, actually starting to accept the fact he can’t win… aw hell, he’s a goddam pleasure to be around after Renesme is born and he imprints with her… because he’s found love somewhere else, other than Bella, so she and Edward can have a peaceful relationship for all eternity. Ironic how I really started to like him and there was only maybe one or two chapters left in his narrative of the book…

I’m more than considering watching all the movies again. I think I just might reread the entire series.
And I have yet to get back to the first book, where I had stopped at chapter 5… going into it and making notes about how I would have depicted that chapter in the movie… man did I miss that chapter in the book, I was looking so forward to it too

And actually, after hearing that there’s a definite possibility of “The Host” being made into a movie, I’m considering rereading that as well… despite the fact I found it took forever to get through.
I didn’t start really enjoying myself until maybe after the first 100 pages. When the characters Jared and Jamie entered the picture.

Seems like it’s gonna be a busy summer. We’re gonna be at the shorehouse for Father’s Day weekend and the 4th of July as well.
And we did NOT see Wyland himself at Stone Harbor, which I was really disappointed about when I first heard it. But when we ended up doing instead, hey, it’s family time… can’t really beat that.

It’s good to get away, but I hate not having Internet access for long periods of time. Might be that I’m an addict, but I really do miss not having it.

I had the most interesting sets of thoughts going through my head yesterday en route to a birthday party for a couple of my 2nd cousins.
I have a really wide range of music, particularly my female artists. No two are exactly alike and I’m enriched by all of them in different ways.

Promise my next entry will address the music vs. lyrics scenario… if one is weak or overally offensive, the other can be brilliant enough to make up for it and vice versa… I have a couple of examples now that I could possibly use.

Another thing I noticed. I’d gotten four albums this year.
Two might be by the same artist, but regardless, two of the four albums are by female artists.

The Twilight soundtrack has a multitude of acts, but mostly great music.
“The Futurist”… enough said, not gonna go into that here.

Lady Gaga’s “The Fame Monster” and “Born this way”

Taking my most recent 9 albums, ignoring the soundtrack, five of the 9 were by female artists.

There’s Britney Spears, bubblegum pop/pop with playful, innenudo lyrics with undeniable catchy melodies… guilty pleasure
Katy Perry, who is pretty hardcore in inneundo or flat-out sexually-laced lyrics, pushing the envelope
Orianthi, the rocker chick who doesn’t take BS from anybody, but has her soft side
Michelle Branch, who is wholesome in every right, but hey, her “Spirit Room” was a kindred spirit of mine at its particular time
Alanis Morissette, I’ve yet to completely flesh out… so I’ll get back to you guys on that one

Then there’s Lady Gaga… now I might be still, drinking the kool-aid, as they say, but at the given moment, I feel like she’s both someone after my own heart and an inspiration/role model…

I listened to her and used to think it was really good music and that she was an artist that speaks to a new generation. Staying original, but actually does tasteful things with the electronic/techno genre that’s been taking over the music industry for the past 10 years… but she has great lyrics that are also used tastefully… to an extent. There are a couple of cases in “Born this way” where it’s hard to overlook the provocativeness

Sure, I can go out of my way to look into music and nitpick about everything, but I have my own biases and I make my own rules to suit my favorite artists where others could do the same things and I wouldn’t give them nearly as much credit.

As far as where the album stands among her previous ones, I’m not 100% sure.
Unlike The Fame which experiments with a number of different genres and types of sounds, this album of the same size generally has the same texture throughout… some songs have quite a bit of similarity in their overall vibe.

The shorter of the three, The Fame Monster, is very homogeneous. All of the songs sounded very similiar in tone, but each speaks about a different subject. Gaga says that each speaks about a different monster in fame and in life that she faces every day.

Over the past couple weeks over a couple of interviews, performances and the NYC Monster Ball concert, I’d gotten to know the artist behind the songs a bit better.
My god, she’s a wonder. And I’m not talking about the outfits or activism or anything that could be seen as negative.
It might be counterproductive to say this, seeing as she wears all these odd clothes and wears all these wigs, but I see her as being very genunine about her beliefs and what her music stands for. At the end of the day, she wants to be a role model to her little monsters and to be someone they can safely look up to.

So before I get into the GMA footage I didn’t get to check into on Friday, I’ll give my first review of “Born this Way”…
for the record, I have listened through the entire album three times. And overall, I’m saying that I enjoy 86% of the music… There’s at least one song I’m not particularly fond of so I’ll skip it from now on and there are two that are borderline so I can’t neglect them completely.
The most interesting thing is that some of the songs reminded me of other artists and they wouldn’t be entirely out of place in the 80’s

  1. Marry the Night
    • Was NOT a fan of this song the first time I heard it. Maybe because I was expecting something else, wasn’t as familiar with her music at this point. It runs for about 4.5 minutes, and it does run a little long towards the end. The second listen was all I needed. It has about the same appeal and opening factor as “Bad Romance” brought to the previous album, which make it a plus
  2. Born this way
    • The only thing this song can suffer from is being overplayed to the point where I’m sick of it, which I really don’t want to be. It’s song full of sound advice that just about anyone can use in moments of self-doubt. There’s been accusations of plagarism here because some bits are remiscent of “Vogue” by Madonna… or was it “Express yourself”… you can see the similarities, but clearly they’re different songs musically and lyrically. It’ll join the ranks of previous singles in that it is catchy, a great anthem and promotes an antidote for the self-conscious
  3. Government hooker
    • the lyrics could use a little more reading into to see if there’s any more to this. The title alone makes it a little borderline as far as it being acceptable to sing from the lyrical standpoint… it’s almost as much as crime as Kesha’s lyrics which don’t promote the best ideas. Bits and pieces of it are somewhat annoying, but I’m finding myself developing an immunity to them. Much the way I’d grown used to the very odd “furious, curious, fantasist code” lyric of “The Futurist”… overtime, I think it’ll win me over on the grounds its catchy musically
  4. Judas
    • man… those who read 2 entries go know full well that I was head over heels over this song. The other day I had concerns when I found myself unable to remember how to play it on keyboard and that it would take a while for me to remember how it went. But I think in the end, it’ll be one of those songs that I should be careful about what I wish for because I could get what I ask for and get sick of it really quick. The montone delivery of the lyrics goes back to “Poker Face” and the way the lyrics and segues between verses are done is nearly identical to “Bad Romance”… instead of Bollywood, it’s closer to Egyptian/Middle-eastern…
    • though I’m going for the “obvious kill” with this comment, I was left with the impression that maybe this song makes me think about RDJ… especially with the lyric “Jesus is my virtue and Judas is the demon I cling to”… that same old angel/devil debate… yeah, totally love this song
  5. Americano
    • it took me a few listens to come around with this song… it invokes imagery from “Carmen” with the Spanish entrails… it’s another catchy tune that’s kinda hard to get out of your head, but lyrically, it’s a bit one dimesional
  6. Hair
    • bits and pieces had me thinking about another song… “We Belong” by Pat Benatar
    • the message goes back to the “Born this way” model, but maybe one segment of that overall picture… wanting to be “as free as my hair”
  7. Scheibe
    • Unsure how I feel about it as a whole, but the first 40+ seconds are spoken in German. The overall song is very techno-esque with very little substance that carries over to the next song. All I can decipher is one lyric “I don’t speak German, but I can if you like” Bits and pieces had me thinking about Whitney Houston as far as the vocal goes and how some verses sound. 
  8. Bloody Mary
    • one of the better songs in every front… probably the best part is the fact it’s very cryptic in its overall message. her singing voice is showcased her as well as it is in “Paparazzi”, again that’s a compliment
  9. Bad Kids
    • the strongest song of the next couple that follow. It’s one of a few examples that make me think about the 80’s with some of the sound bits. Also under the “Born this way” model, it promotes being secure with yourself despite believing you’re not the best crayon in the box
  10. Highway Unicorn (Road to Love)
    • probably the only song I won’t be able to listen to anymore. The structure is very hard to decipher, to know which direction its going in or what the pattern is.  As far as the tone, it really doesn’t fit with anything on the album, truly an oddball
  11. Heavy Metal Lover
    • this song is borderline in the fact it takes advantage of that vocal distortion thing rappers seem really fond of these days… I didnt know until looking at the cover what the name of the song was. The title is spoken through this distortion. The music is more electronic than anything else on the album, but it’s catchy in its delivery which somewhat saves it in the end
  12. Electric Chapel
    • a good song, but not nearly as some predessors… yet a million times better than the two songs before it. The chorus is the only thing I really remember about it, but in all of the grounds, it does succeed as a song.
  13. You & I
    • Despite hearing it performed three times within a one week span, it’s become one of my favorites on the album. It’s a ballad, Gaga plays piano and tells a story as if she’s performing in an oldfashioned piano bar (the same imagery I get with “The Beautiful Ones” but not completely the same place)… its very similiar musically to “Speechless” on the previous album
    • yet another reason why people would suspect inspirational ties to Queen… they’d already gotten credit for a song title from which Lady Gaga got her stagename
  14. The Edge of Glory
    • another really good song… not much to really say about it.

And I believe that’s about it.
Should I get another idea for another entry, I’ll get on it. In the meantime, i think I’ll catch up with some footage I missed over the past couple days. I’ll be sure to post what I decide to do for a movie(s) tonight… I think I’m still leaning towards “Wonder Boys”

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