Wrote a post

Saved it for later. I still have a headache. Short summary: I am thinking of staying on this blog instead of moving to a new one, and I saw the trailer for Brokeback Mountain and noted that it’s being given The Notebook treatment, no matter what the movie might actually be like. If I were gay I’d be insulted by the schmaltzy strings and gloppy voiceovers emitting ridiculously fulsome praise of this film (Heath Ledger is better — at everything — than Jesus!, and it’s going to get every prize in the universe including the Nobel Peace Prize and the Proxima Centauri Gamma Irridium Star of Intra-Galactic Excellence). Then again, I still think of gay people as examples of wit, charm, and fashion, but that apparently hasn’t been true since Noel Coward died. Gays are now Just Folks, and are expected to tear up and reach for the hanky when one male movie actor makes googoo eyes at another male movie actor as the violins swell, just the way 99% of my sex does when they watch pinky goo crap like Bridges of Madison County. The only thing keeping pedophiles from getting this treatment is the Catholic priest scandal; when the church gets rid of the teen-altar-boy robe-lifters in its ranks I wouldn’t be surprised if the next Hollywood “art” blockbuster will feature the doomed romance of a middle-aged adult with a preteen (or younger?) child. Or maybe they’ll tackle incest first, who knows? We’re running out of things to do with our genitals, so I can only hope they’ll stop before they get to the insertion of inanimate objects, or man-chicken relations. Don’t believe me? Then you haven’t been paying attention for the last thirty years.

Just one more thing: I am more than half convinced that all this increase in crude sexual display in the movies is actually a symptom of a fear and even hatred of true sexuality, especially between the opposite sexes. Let me ask you this: is there one single movie released in the past, say, five years that was even one-tenth as sexy in its entirety than one five-minute sequence in any movie made up to the early sixties? I will illustrate: last night I happened to catch the last few minutes of the musical Band Wagon, starring Fred Astaire, Cyd Charisse, and others. Now I don’t care for musicals — unless they have Fred Astaire. There is something so self-assured and relaxed about Astaire, so adult yet enjoying it that no male actor of today can bring off even as a pose. It’s simply not possible for our overgrown adolescents to display such confidence. And Astaire was kind of goofy-looking, not really what we consider “handsome” these days. But compared to someone like, say, George Clooney — oh please, don’t make me laugh.

Anyway, I turned it on in the middle of a dance sequence. The cast is putting on a play (it’s a play within a play, you know, like Shakespeare was always putting in his plays), and there’s a stylized film noir set. Then the camera pans to Cyd Charisse, leaning against the bar and wrapped in this amazing black coat. She’s gorgeous. Then she slowly unwraps her coat (revealing this scarlet sleeveless dress with slits up to there to show off her famous legs) and she and Astaire do this dance sequence which was so sexy if I were a man I’d have passed out on the coffee table. So what do we have today to compare to anything like that? Madonna?

We’re doomed.

13 Responses to “Wrote a post”

  1. Grandma Says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the next Hollywood “art” blockbuster will feature the doomed romance of a middle-aged adult with a preteen (or younger?) child.

    You’ve nailed it Andrea…unfortunately.

    I remember reading of something coming up that will deal very very sympathetically with the main character….a pedophile. Might have been an upcoming Broadway play or something. Can’t remember the details.

    (Forgetting details happens more now, lol.)

  2. andrea Says:

    You know, I had forgotten, until a reader reminded me via email, that in all things our betters in France long ago have led the way. So you know it’s not scruples or morals, but merely the tremulous fear of looking inadequate before their masters, that have so far kept American movie makers from doing their own versions of these gems. But I sense that the Tinseltown version of “bravery” is in the air…

  3. rhhardin Says:

    You could update the New Yorker cartoon (one woman to another, as big boob closeup appears on theater screen) “This is where they use the body-double.'’

  4. rhhardin Says:

    Mallarme on the dancer http://home.att.net/~rhhardin/derrida.dancer.txt

    The feminine operation is precisely to undermine every essentializing male fetish through
    an endless series of allusions.

    Otherwise you just have a wife or girlfriend with no clothes on, fatal to everything.

    The indefinite deferment of a signified signifies a future, a reference to a child in the end.

    Which is why shortcuts don’t work.

  5. andrea Says:

    I’m not reading anything by Derrida. Life is too short.

  6. mwickens Says:

    Expecting a Hollywood trailer for a movie that tells a love story to be anything other than schmaltzy is pretty unrealistic. “As a gay person” I was not offended. At any rate, the movie itself is anything but schmaltzy and sentimental.

  7. andrea Says:

    I guess you skipped the part of my post where I pointed out that it was apparent that most gay people were just as easily hooked in by schmaltz as non-gay people, so I am not surprised you weren’t offended.

    In the post I was going to write, which I saved as a draft and now probably won’t finish because I’m just going to say it here, I pointed out that the movie itself was not, by all reports, a soppy romance filmed through a gauze-veiled camera lense. And I may as well also mention that I don’t have anything against the movie itself, merely the absurd campaign for it as some kind of “breakthrough” in gay film-making, as if there had been no films made with gay characters ever ever in the history of film. And incidentally, the attitude this film’s cheerleaders have towards people who have no interest in seeing it (”you must be a homophobe!”) is quite obnoxious, and absurd. With a few exceptions I don’t like: romances involving any sexual combination, zombie movies, horror films (unless they are really cheesy and have a voiceover by a human and his two robot pals), movies where the plot involves any type of sport, war movies (the noise gives me migraines), serious — as opposed to James Bond — spy thrillers, mafia movies (The Godfather just bored me), giant ape movies (I don’t get the whole King Kong thing), action thrillers, and crime “capers.” That’s just a few of the movie plots that bore me. It’s true that that doesn’t leave very many movies for me to watch, but somehow I soldier on.

  8. anne Says:

    Do you like all the movies with Norma Shearer, Robert Montgomery, (early) Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, (early) Humphrey Bogart, Gloria Grahame, William Powell, etc.? I find them to be quite satisfying to watch because they are absolutely not sentimental but witty and, underneath, insightful. I especially recommend “A Lonely Place” and “Wife vs. Secretary”.

  9. andrea Says:

    I haven’t seen all of the movies with those actors — I really don’t like watching movies all that much. But when I do, I find I prefer to watch the old black-and-white ones from the thirties and forties.

  10. skubie Says:

    Don’t forget Cyd Charisse and Gene Kelly in Singin’ in the Rain.

    Whoof!

    If that is on I get very inarticulate and distracted. As does every male of my acquaintance. Afterwards we shake ourselves, perk up, and say “Uh huh… yeah” to whichever females in the room have been ragging on how they don’t understand why any normal man could find her at all attractive.

  11. aelfheld Says:

    The apocalypse has started without us.

    Atlanta’s The Express theatre is putting on Love Jerry, a musical about incestuous pedophilia.

    Mark Steyn, relatively recently, reviewed a Broadway play about a married man’s affair with a goat.

    And people don’t understand my disdain for popular culture.

  12. andrea Says:

    “whichever females in the room have been ragging on how they don’t understand why any normal man could find her at all attractive.”

    I’ve never met these women. All the women I know think she’s stunning and wished they could have her legs.

  13. CGHill Says:

    My favorite Cyd scene is a solo turn in the middle of Silk Stockings, in which she discards her Social Realism underwear in favor of some Parisian fripperies (bought for her by Astaire, of course). It’s fearsomely erotic and yet probably wouldn’t even warrant a PG rating today.