Posts Tagged ‘television’

Just some snippets of opinion

April 24, 2013

I don’t want a new Gatsby movie. Especially a musical. By Baz Luhrmann. I enjoy the book, I sort of enjoy the old Redford movie.  I don’t see Dicaprio as Gatsby or Tom or anyone else from the book. I’d rather just see it left alone, or done by someone who isn’t, well, Luhrmann. No offense, but Moulin Rouge, Romero + Juliet, and Australia don’t inspire huge amounts of confidence and I’m not looking forward to Gatsby getting that treatment.

I don’t want a new prequel to The Shining. What made the original Shining movie great wasn’t Stephen King, it wasn’t the hotel, it wasn’t Colorado. It was Stanley Kubrick directing Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duval, and Jake Loyd. Want proof? Look at the more recent tv miniseries.  To pile on the negatives, this wouldn’t have King’s blessing and it will be based on material even he cut from the original book.  Want to do a horror movie set in a hotel? Great. have at it. Just leave The Shining out of it. And, for God’s sake, get good people involved.

I don’t want Amazon getting involved in every damn part of media experience. This includes television. I’m complained about Amazon enough, but on this level I feel roughly the same about a handful of companies owning the majority of our television and radio stations, how our newspapers are being swept under larger and larger umbrellas, how cable/phone companies have increasingly monopolies, etc. It’s never good when one company has their hands in too many cookie jars.

I don’t want to never read another Roger Ebert blog or tweet. I have Ebert’s RSS feed in my google reader, something else I don’t want to see go away, and I haven’t ready any of the posts that are still marked unread. I’ve read them on Ebert’s actual blog site, but through the reader. Because then they would no longer be unread. And they would disappear. I don’t want them to disappear. I watched Siskel and Ebert, and I was crushed when Siskel died. I never warmed to Roeper. I became a devotee of Ebert’s website.  He was really the only the movie critic I bothered to read any more. I’ve found his like/dislike to be a fair barometer of how I will enjoy a movie. Right or wrong, I found that I often agreed with him on whether or not a movie was worth watching. We probably disagreed on why, but if he liked a movie, I was reasonably confidant in it. Now, well, I don’t know.

Alright, I think I’m done. Just an ugly day, and I feel gripey. Had to get it out of my system, I guess.

 

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The Reading

March 12, 2010

Last night I went to a poetry reading involving my g/f and a couple of other women. Apparently this month is Women’s History Month or something. I don’t mean for that to sound denigrating, I really am not sure what it is as it was only mentioned to me once, but it set the stage for who was presenting poems and for the subject matter.

I’m happy to say the whole thing went well. Kate was good. She says she was nervous but it didn’t show. The second lady I wasn’t overly thrilled with but was still good. Confident. at ease. the open mic was less successful. One woman read a poem by someone else, a poem about a woman with a hat made from iguanas. It went far too long and I couldn’t help but wonder why someone would read a poem on open mic that wasn’t there own. One woman delivered her poem particularly well, from memory, clearly accostomed to performing but it lost energy halfway through. An undergrad got up and read poems that sounded like poems written by an undergrad but he gets marks for just stepping up and doing it.

What  I again realized, though, was something I’ve realized in the past. I’m not always good at following something being spoken. My interest wavers. I lose track of what’s being said or I simply don’t bother following it from the start.

What I do pay attention to is the person. The performance. The audience. Kate looked good up there. The audience laughed at seemingly appropriate moments. Without entirely following her poems I knew she was doing well.

Strangely, the poetry I followed the best was the one that was more directly performed rather than read. She was a blonde woman, sturdy with hair that just seemed to go everywhere for a bit. She wore glasses, rectangularish with this plastic frames. Very much the student look before incorporating such quirks in smaller more focused ways for adulthood. Her poem started out and it was funny and catchy about tits on TV at the house of her guy friends but it devolved into a bit of social commentary and what not and lost its energy.

There is something about a performance that focuses my attention.

What’s doubly odd is that I can sit through a recorded reading just fine. I have been watching some David Foster Wallace readings on youtube lately and find them interesting and engaging. But they can’t be all that different from a reading attended in person. Granted, he may just have a style that I find easier to “get into” but maybe the fact that it is filtered through a screen also has something to do with it. The idea that it becomes instantly more entertaining and engaging the moment it is viewed through an additional medium rather than just with my own eyes some how making it more palatable is an interesting and also disturbing one.

Does something filtered through an entertainment medium now lend credibility, even if only subconsciously? I mean, I watch television and I can decide what I think is crap and what isn’t crap and what I want to watch and what I don’t want to watch. but is there still a thought process saying that at least since it’s on television that there must be some purpose to it? Something that makes it worth of being transported to my living room as entertainment? and what’s youtube but the world’s largest cable subscription? Granted, most of the shows are, at most, a few minutes long but still, they’re there to be decided upon whether or not they should be viewed and just being there…well, are they more legitimate for that?

and this is without going into the idea of what exactly legitimacy is. Something that I, frankly, don’t want to delve into right now and will leave for everyone to contextualize as they desire. After all, I think that once given a basic set of parameters, even loosely defined as in the rambling predecessor to this paragraph, I think a general idea of legitimacy as intended by for this piece can be approximated by everyone.

In the end, all I’m really wondering is why I can watch a reading on youtube and be entertained and engaged and follow what is being said while not having a roughly equative experience in-person. I wonder if this is some innate or, possibly, learned shortcoming of mine of if it is something everyone has to deal with. And it’s not a problem I solely have with readings of fiction/poetry but with concerts as well. I’ve been to a few verve pipe concerts with my girlfriend and, outside of the songs I know, I’ve really had no idea what was being sung for great stretches of time but I did enjoy the music. Like a verve pipe concert, last night I didn’t always know what was going on but I did enjoy the music.