Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Sick:::Of the Movies

Since Friday, I've been inflicted with an influenza that has pounded my head, stuffed my nose, strangled my throat, crashed through my chest, restricted my breathing, kept me awake nights, sapped my will and removed my sense of taste.

(The obvious joke is:

"Removed his taste? Doctor, will he be able to review movies again?"

"I don't see why not?"

"Well, he never could before!"

I'm capital-"s" Sick.

Sick. as. a. dawg.

Bleary-eyed, tongue-coated, gravel-throated, wheezing (but at least I have my health!) and obviously fuzz-brained if I thought that joke would work! Some people watch movies on sick days, and I do, too, but not on this near-occasion of near-death.

Watching movies has been very difficult, if damn near impossible, because I'm looking at things with a jaundiced eye. In this couch-view, not only does "The Greatest Show on Earth" look undeserving of its Best Picture Oscar, but it looks like Cthulu come to drag everybody on-screen and watching in theaters and at home ab original into the Fire-Cauldrons of Hell to scorch and burn, through its Army-metaphors applied to the Circus, its slide show editing, and its interminable wallow of a script (I'll write a review of it as soon as I can find something nice to say about Betty Hutton. Don't wait up!).

In this state, the heroin sequences of "Murder, My Sweet" (damn good "Marlowe" for starters) look like reality-TV. In one of few respites in front of the TV sucking on Sucrets and sipping mint tea (part of this may be coffee withdrawals) I managed to have caught Van Sant's re-make of "Psycho," which seemed more interesting this time and makes me want to do something on what he added (besides color, a too-busy sound-design--with occasional funny points, Danny Elfman's stereo-fleshing out of the score—which seems wrong—, and some odd performances). It shows how conventionally he tamped down "Milk," as he's usually one of the most irritating directors working (and I mean that in a good way!).

I couldn't begin to tell you what sort of movie I'd want to watch right now, although in theatres, my short-list includes "The Class" and "Duplicity"--with some tight-lipped interest in "Knowing" (Alex Proyas as the film-maker he was before "I, Robot!"), but they all require interest and the forward momentum of three hours to attain.

Two hours at the Rx's today damn near killed me.

So, if I get some energy (and cough-syrup with codeine don't help that), I'll nip and tuck a couple of things in shape and release them into the wild. But the schedule's shot to hell right now, along with my oxygen intake.

It will take some time to recover.

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