Category Archives: Film

Mr. Hoffman and The Fire Dwellers

For I am not Emily Kimberly, the daughter of Dwayne and Alma Kimberly. No, I'm not. [in a deep voice, pulling off the wig] I'm Edward Kimberly, the recluse brother of my sister Anthea. Edward Kimberly, who has finally vindicated his sister's good name. I am Edward Kimberly. Edward Kimberly. And I'm not mentally ill, but proud, and lucky, and strong enough to be the woman that was the best part of my manhood. The best part of myself.

I’m not mentally ill, but proud, and lucky, and strong enough
to be the woman that was the best part of my manhood.
The best part of myself.


As I listened to Mr. Hoffman speak in the video below, I recalled a passage from Margaret Laurence’s “The Fire Dwellers” when Stacy MacAindra (née Cameron), a 40-ish housewife, is riding the bus.  A lovely teen sits down next to her, and Stacy wonders to herself, “What’s she seeing? Housewife, mother of four, this slightly too short and too amply-rumped woman with coat of yesteryear, hemlines all the wrong length….lipstick wrong color, and crowning comic touch, the hat…”   But as only Stacy knows, “under this chapeau lurks…a tigress.”

As does within us all, no matter what the veneer may indicate to the contrary.

If only everyone could have this kind of epiphany.

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Filed under Film, Life In General, The Mama Goddess, Uncategorized

The Tao Of Charlie (Life Lessons From “So I Married An Axe Murderer”)

The film So I Married An Axe Murderer , starring the inimitable Mike Myers, is a work of pure genius, combining physical and cerebral comedy with exemplary instruction in navigating this mortal coil.

You may be thinking whaaaaaat? but hear me out, okay?  Okay?   Okay.

Warning: Here there be spoilers.

1. Trust Your First Impressions
Case in point: Charlie meets Rose.
Can anyone play nutjob better than Amanda Plummer?  I think not.

Quotes:
Charlie: (as Rose attempts to hit him with an axe) What the FUCK?!

Life Lesson: So many of us take pains to ignore our gut instincts when we meet someone.  We’re told it’s not fair to pigeon hole others (at least not before getting to know them better).  However, there’s a damn good reason we have gut instincts to begin with, so by all means keep an open mind, but when your first impression screams ‘this person is batshit crazy!’ trust that you could be on to something.

You are a total nutcase, completely deranged, delusional, paranoid. Your thought process is all fucked up. Your information train is jammed, man!

2. TV and Movies Are Better Than Real Life
Case in point:  Tony.  Poor Tony.  He became a cop with visions of chasing guys across a crowded city square, hanging on to that part of a helicopter. (You know that part? Underneath the thing that it lands? Do you, do you know that part?)  And he’s never even commandeered a vehicle.

Quotes:
Tony Giardino: Excuse me sir, I’m with the San Francisco police department, this is official police business. I would like to commandeer this vehicle!
Commandeered Driver: No.

Life Lesson: Watch movies constantly.  Avoid real life whenever possible, it’s bound to disappoint.

No. No, there’s not.

3. Relationships Are Hard
Case in point: Charlie and Harriet.  Charlie is a commitmentphobe.  Harriet is possibly Mrs. X., who kills off her husbands.
It’s a match made in Heaven, obviously.

Quotes:
Charlie Mackenzie: I’m afraid you’re gonna ki – leave me.
Harriet Michaels: That I’m gonna cleave you?

Life Lesson: Oftentimes in life, people need to step back and get their shit together before they can make a relationship work.  At least, this is how it pretty much works in the movies: good times, followed by conflict, followed by conflict resolution = better times.  No guarantees, though (refer to Life Lesson #2).

4. The Unknown Is Usually Best Left That Way
Case in point: haggis.
Exception: Paul Haggis.

Quotes:
Harriet Michaels: Do you actually like haggis?
Charlie Mackenzie: No, I think it’s repellent in every way. In fact, I think most Scottish cuisine is based on a dare.

Life Lesson: Avoid the unfamiliar.  Nothing good can come from eating food simmered in an animal’s stomach.

5. Be Honest
Case in point:  Tony the cop, attempting to go undercover

Quotes:
Charlie Mackenzie: So Tony, what’s the deal with your clothes?
Tony Giardino: What do ya mean?
Charlie Mackenzie: You look like Huggy Bear from Starsky and Hutch.

Life lesson: No matter how it may hurt their feelings, never let a friend go out looking like a 1970s pimp.

6. Coffee.Is.The.Best.Thing.Ever

Case in point: Scene 1, Charlie being served at Cafe Roads.

Quotes:
Charlie Mackenzie: Excuse me, miss? There seems to be a mistake. I believe I ordered the *large* cappuccino. *Hello!* Look at the size of this thing.
Tony Giardino: It’s practically a bowl.
Charlie Mackenzie: It’s like Campbell’s Cup-O’-ccino!
Charlie Mackenzie: [laughing at his Campbell’s joke and wiping his tears] Oh, My sides. Please. Aidez-moi.

Life Lesson: No amount of coffee is too much.
MM Coffee

7. Poetry And Alliteration Go A Long Way When Wooing
Case in point: Charlie attempts (and succeeds) in getting Harriet back

Quotes:
Charlie Mackenzie: Harriet. Harry-ette. Hard-hearted harbinger of haggis. Beautiful, bemuse-ed, bellicose butcher. Un-trust… ing. Un-know… ing. Un-love… ed? “He wants you back,” he screamed into the night air like a fireman going to a window that has no fire… except the passion of his heart. I am lonely. It’s really hard. This poem… sucks.

Life Lesson: Learn to rhyme, or at least put together some interesting stream-of-consciousness prose. Ya never know.

MM Poetry

8. Things Can Always Be Worse

Case in point:  Stuart’s anniversary speech to May.

Quotes:
Stuart Mackenzie: Thirty years ago today, May and I were married. Some of you were there, some of you weren’t born, and some of you are now DEED! But, we both said “I do,” and we haven’t agreed on a single thing since.
May Mackenzie: That’s true!
Stuart Mackenzie: But I’m glad I married you, May, because hey, could’ve been worse.

Life Lesson: Groove on what you got, not what you don’t, because it could really suck more.  Really.

May, shut it!  Turn off the Bay City Rollers! The soccer game's about to start!

May, shut it! Turn off the Bay City Rollers! The soccer game’s about to start!

9. The Scottish Are The Undisputed Extreme Party Champions Of  The Universe

Case in point: Stuart Mackenzie

Quotes:
Stuart Mackenzie: [after Charlie and Harriet have been married] Let’s get pissed!
_______________
Stuart Mackenzie: [after exhausting a bagpipe player at Charlie and Harriet’s wedding]
We have a piper who’s down! Repeat, Piper Down!

Life lesson:  Don’t try to outdo ’em.  Just sit back and admire.

Why,  yes, yes I *am* Scottish.

Why, yes, yes I *am* Scottish.

10. And last but not leastSometimes The Conspiracy Theorists Are Right
Case in point: Stuart conveys his unique worldview to Tony.

Quotes:


It’s a well-known fact, Sonny Jim!

Life Lesson:  Listen to the crazy people.

And here’s The La’s to sing us out with There She Goes:

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Filed under Advice and How To, Film, Life In General

Girls Behaving Badly


Brave

Watched Brave with the kids Saturday night.  It’s a Disney/Pixar offering about a young Scottish princess named Merida (mair-eh-duh), who, though intelligent, independent, headstrong and an accomplished archer, is still expected to be married off to the first-born son of one of the other clans of the kingdom, in accordance with tradition.

Merida doesn’t take kindly to this, and though her father admires her conviction, he still sides with Merida’s mother, the Queen, who is determined to mold her daughter into a ‘proper’ princess and see the marriage carried out.  In defiance, Merida seeks out the assistance of a local witch, who gives her a potion she assures will change Merida’s fate.  And change it, it does, though of course not in any way foreseen.

What struck me as bloody wonderful about this film was that Merida, though learning important life lessons throughout, never undergoes the distasteful transformation that is the fate of so many female characters (Disney and otherwise), which is to say, she isn’t forced to compromise her true self to attain her goals.

Watching, I couldn’t help but regard my daughter.  She overflows with a joyful glee, she dances with abandon, is extremely artistic and intelligent, a voracious reader, and possesses an uncanny ability to take a concept and transform it into a joke, or a song, or some keen witticism.  She never fails to amaze me.

That said, I’ve noticed that her particular brand of precociousness sometimes comes with a price, that emotional development does not necessarily grow at the same rate as intelligence.  My girl is the most willful little person I can ever hope to meet, and as an adversary, she packs way more punch than any adult I’ve encountered.  She rages injustices, both real and imagined.  She cries.  She yells.  She screams, occasionally.  She stomps her little feet, and she slams doors (she reminds me of me, truth be told).  And though I’ve had the occasional experience of going head to head with her, these behaviours become far more evident at school.

I suppose it stands to reason.  At our school, it’s become apparent that her kind of ‘different‘ is not equated with ‘unique’ or ‘special,’ so much as ‘troublesome’ and ‘disruptive.’  And when a child spends six hours a day, five days a week in an environment that makes it abundantly clear they do not fit somehow, conflict is bound to occur.  Though my daughter is a solid A-student, I’ve still spent three years combating those who insist that my girl needs a label (they like to imply ODD.  I say she doesn’t suffer fools well). What she needs, truly, are educators who are capable and willing to look beyond the conventional rule books and tweak their approach.  I’m not inferring the system needs to be overhauled (which is how the admin hears it), I’m talking about accepting that not all children learn in the same way, a concept established decades ago.  Darwin said, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”  And Einstein posited that the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”  I have quoted these to school administration more than once.  And while by the end of Brave, Merida and her mother realize how change is intrinsically linked to growth, our school is evidently still sussing that one out.  Happily, with some additional resources now in place, and a little girl maturing by the minute, I have high hopes for next year.

Through this process, I have learned that in order for my daughter to become her true self, I must not only guide her, but shield her from those who would insist she become a ‘proper’ princess.  I myself have to ensure that I avoid becoming too Queen-y.  I know that at times I have attempted to quell my little tempest, to rein her in, tell her too often to act a certain way, speak in a certain way, dress in a certain way.  I am still learning about what it means to truly parent, ever seeking a balance of guidance and freedom.

Ultimately, I want to instill in my daughter the idea that anything is possible, that her kind of ‘different‘ is to be celebrated.
That her fate lies in her own hands.

Our fate lives in us. You only have to be brave enough to see it.

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Filed under Film, Rants, The Mama Goddess

F*** Yeah, It’s Art

WW

“I think humor is sacred, I really do.  It’s my sacred mission.  I think humor is the most important thing we have, as human beings.  It’s thought as a lesser thing, but it’s really our most sacred quality…and without it, we’re dead.”

I was introduced to the marvel that is Wayne White today.  Some of you may know his name, however, for those who don’t, he’s part of the genius behind the sets of PeeWee’s Playhouse, Beakman’s World and The Weird Al Show, videos such as the Smashing Pumpkins’ Tonight, Tonight and Peter Gabriel’s Big Time, and a gallery’s worth of paintings.

In 2012, “Beauty Is Embarrassing” was released, a documentary on his life.  I’m a quarter way through it and HAD to share it with you,  I think it’s that great, that fresh, that important.  He takes the conventional, oftentimes-staid ideas of the art world and turns them on their heads.  As someone currently struggling with the fear associated with declaring one’s work ‘art,’ this came at the perfect time.

The trailer is found below…I’d heartily endorse running out right now and finding a copy to watch. ♥

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Filed under Art, Film

Goodbye From My 10-Year-Old Self

starring_sally_j_friedman

Esther Williams never got water up her nose, or had to spit when she swam, like Sally, who didn’t like to get her face wet in the first place.  And Esther Williams never splashed, either.  Not even when she dove off  the high board.
You’d never know you had to kick to stay afloat from watching Esther Williams.  And when she swam in the movies there was always beautiful music in the background and handsome men standing around, waiting.
It would be great fun to be Esther Williams!

The year was 1980.  The book was Starring Sally J. Freedman As Herself.
If you were never a girl, you may be unfamiliar with this gem in Judy Blume’s bibliography.

Sally was ten years old,  just like me, and SSJFAH taught me many things.  Set in 1947, it taught me about the horror of the Holocaust, and the beauty of hibiscus flowers.  It showed me the importance of family history and personal stories.  It helped me know what it was like to be the new kid, and about how one always eventually finds their people.  It was a very significant book for me.

It also drew my attention to someone with whom I would have otherwise never become familiar -Esther Williams – and for that I will always be grateful.

Because back in the day, when I saw how much Sally loved her, I did, too.
And so now my 10-year-old self will mourn her, too.

Goodbye, Esther. You’ll be missed.
August 8, 1921 – June 6, 2013

esther-williams

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Filed under Books, Film, Nostalgia

Brain Candy Blog

Jean Seberg and Jean-Paul Belmondo in Breathless (À bout de souffle), Godard, 1960

One of these days, I’m gonna write a poignant, hard-hitting, intellectual piece that takes your current state of being and stands it on its head.

But today ain’t that day.  It’s Sunday. The day before the start of most work weeks.  The slow-down day.  Here, it’s grey and blustery.  Winter is threatening to arrive at any minute, like a relative you dread seeing.  Hearty stew eating weather, though I don’t have any at the moment, as I have to get rid of leftovers from the weekend.  It becomes a snarky kind of day, if you let it.  Happily, a bit of wine remains in the bottle, the fireplace is on and the kids are playing nicely.

I find myself lost in a reverie made up of films, and decided that the blog of the day would be listing some of my favourite lines.

I couldn’t find quotes for some, namely Il Postino (Radford, Troisi, 1994)  Burnt by the Sun (Mikhalkov, 1994), Trois Couleurs [Bleu, Blanc, Rouge] (Kieślowski, 1993/4) and Project Grizzly (Lynch, NFB, 1996), all of which you should see.

Sit back and relax.

Drama

The best thing about feeling happy is that you think you’ll never be unhappy again.
Kiss of The Spider Woman, Babenco, 1985

Mrs. Fisher: Women’s heads weren’t made for thinking, I assure you. I should go to bed and get well.
Caroline Dester: I am well.
Mrs. Fisher: Then why did you send a message that you were ill?
Caroline: I didn’t.
Mrs. Fisher: Then I’ve had all the trouble of coming out here for nothing.
Caroline: But wouldn’t you prefer coming out and finding me well than coming out and finding me ill?
The Enchanted April, Newell, 1992

Michael: All right. This one time I’ll let you ask me about my affairs.
Kay Adams: Is it true? Is it?
Michael: No.
[Kay smiles and walks into his arms]
Kay Adams: I guess we both need a drink, huh?
[Kay goes to the kitchen to fix a drink, but sees Peter Clemenza, Rocco Lampone and Al Neri enter Michael’s office]
Clemenza: Don Corleone. [kisses Michael’s ring]
The Godfather, Coppola, 1972

Cecil: Your mama thought you were golden so we named you after yellow flowers and corn. This is you here…
[cuts some purslane from garden]
Cecil: …pretty, golden purslane.
Pursy: Purslane’s really a weed, you know. A neighbor told me when I was 9 and I ran over his tomato plants. He said all gardeners hate purslane.
Cecil: Yeah, and dandelions. Doesn’t stop kids from making wishes on ’em.
A Love Song for Bobby Long, Gabel, 2004

Comedy

Ralphie as Adult: [narrating] Only I didn’t say “Fudge.” I said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the “F-dash-dash-dash” word!
Mr. Parker: [stunned] *What* did you say?
Ralphie: Uh, um…
Mr. Parker: That’s… what I thought you said. Get in the car. Go on!
Ralphie as Adult: [narrating] It was all over – I was dead. What would it be? The guillotine? Hanging? The chair? The rack? The Chinese water torture? Hmmph. Mere child’s play compared to what surely awaited me.
A Christmas Story, Clark, 1983

Alvy Singer: I was thrown out of N.Y.U. my freshman year for cheating on my metaphysics final, you know. I looked within the soul of the boy sitting next to me.
Annie Hall, Allen, 1977

Stuart Mackenzie: Well, it’s a well known fact, Sonny Jim, that there’s a secret society of the five wealthiest people in the world, known as The Pentavirate, who run everything in the world, including the newspapers, and meet tri-annually at a secret country mansion in Colorado, known as The Meadows.
Tony Giardino: So who’s in this Pentavirate?
Stuart Mackenzie: The Queen, The Vatican, The Gettys, The Rothschilds, *and* Colonel Sanders before he went tits up. Oh, I hated the Colonel with is wee *beady* eyes, and that smug look on his face. “Oh, you’re gonna buy my chicken! Ohhhhh!”
Charlie Mackenzie: Dad, how can you hate “The Colonel”?
Stuart Mackenzie: Because he puts an addictive chemical in his chicken that makes ya crave it fortnightly, smartass!
So I Married An Axe Murderer, Schlamme, 1993

Juno MacGuff: I’ll take some of these. Nope… There it is. The little pink plus sign is so unholy.
[shakes pregnancy tester]
Rollo: That ain’t no Etch-A-Sketch. This is one doodle that can’t be un-did, Homeskillet.
Juno, Reitman, 2007

Action

[stumbles out of wrecked truck]
The Joker: [to Batman] Come on, I want you to do it, I want you to do it. Come on, hit me. Hit me!
The Dark Knight, Nolan, 2008

Indiana: The Ark of the Covenant, the chest that the Hebrews used to carry around the Ten Commandments.
Major Eaton: What, you mean THE Ten Commandments?
Indiana: Yes, the actual Ten Commandments, the original stone tablets that Moses brought down from Mt. Horeb and smashed, if you believe in that sort of thing…
[the officers stare at him blankly]
Indiana: Didn’t any of you guys ever go to Sunday school?
Raiders of the Lost Ark, Speilberg, 1981

Léon: You need some time to group up a little.
Mathilda: I finished growing up, Léon. I just get older.
Léon: For me it’s the opposite. I’m old enough. I need time to grow up.
Mathilda: Is life always this hard, or is it just when you’re a kid?
Léon: Always like this.
The Professional (Léon )Besson, 1994

Delia Surridge: [V gives her a rose] Are you going to kill me now?
V: I killed you 10 minutes ago.
[shows her hypodermic needle]
V: While you slept.
Delia Surridge: Is there any pain?
V: No.
Delia Surridge: Thank you. Is it too late to apologize?
V: Never.
Delia Surridge: I’m so sorry.
V For Vendetta, McTeigue, 2006

Foreign Language

Antonia: This is no time for Schopenhauer. This is important.
Antonia’s Line, Gorris, 1995

Narrator: On September 3rd 1973, at 6:28pm and 32 seconds, a bluebottle fly capable of 14,670 wing beats a minute landed on Rue St Vincent, Montmartre. At the same moment, on a restaurant terrace nearby, the wind magically made two glasses dance unseen on a tablecloth. Meanwhile, in a 5th-floor flat, 28 Avenue Trudaine, Paris 9, returning from his best friend’s funeral, Eugène Colère erased his name from his address book. At the same moment, a sperm with one X chromosome, belonging to Raphaël Poulain, made a dash for an egg in his wife Amandine. Nine months later, Amélie Poulain was born.
Amélie, Jeunet, 2001

Michel Poiccard: When we talked, I talked about me, you talked about you, when we should have talked about each other.
Breathless [À bout de souffle] Godard, 1960

Animated

Mr. Fox: [in a cellar with many of the other animal characters] Allright, let’s start planning. Who knows shorthand?
[Linda raises her hand]
Mr. Fox: Great! Linda! Lutra Lutra – you got some dry paper?
[she holds up some paper]
Mr. Fox: Here we go. Mole! Talpa Europea! What d’you got?
Mole: I can see in the dark.
Mr. Fox: That’s incredible! We can use that! Linda?
Linda Otter: Got it.
Mr. Fox: Rabbit! Oryctolagus Cuniculus!
Rabbit: I’m fast.
Mr. Fox: You bet you are. Linda?
Linda Otter: Got it.
Mr. Fox: Beaver! Castor Fiber!
Beaver: I can chew through wood.
Mr. Fox: Amazing! Linda!
Linda Otter: Got it.
Mr. Fox: Badger! Meles Meles!
Badger: Demolitions expert.
Mr. Fox: What? Since when?
The Fantastic Mr. Fox, Anderson, 2009

Sosuke: [after several waves with eyes fail to catch him by the shore]     That was weird.
Ponyo (Gake no ue no Ponyo, dubbed Japanese), Miyakazi, 2008

Gru: Clearly we need to set a few rules. Rule number one: You will not touch anything.
Margo: Aha. What about the floor?
Gru: Yes, you may touch the floor
Margo: What about the air?
Gru: Yes, you may touch the air.
Edith: What about this?
[Holds a ray gun on her hands, the laser sight aimed right at Gru]
Gru: Ah! Where did you get that?
Edith: Found it.
[Gru takes it away from her]
Gru: Rule number two: You will not bother me while I’m working. Rule number three: You will not cry, or whine, or laugh, or giggle, or sneeze or barf or fart!  So no, no, no annoying sounds. All right?
Agnes: Does this count as annoying?
[puckles her cheeks]
Gru: [Stops her] Very!
Despicable Me, Coffin/Renaud, 2010

Science Fiction

Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: You all wanna be looking very intently at your own belly buttons. I see a head start to rise, violence is going to ensue. Probably guessed we mean to be thieving here but what we’re after is not yours. So, let’s have no undue fussing.

~ and ~

The Operative: That girl will rain destruction down on you and your ship. She is an albatross, Captain.
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: Way I remember it, albatross was a ship’s good luck, ’til some idiot killed it.
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: [to Inara] Yes, I’ve read a poem. Try not to faint.
Serenity, Whedon, 2005

[HAL’s shutdown]
HAL: I’m afraid. I’m afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I’m a… fraid. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I am a HAL 9000 computer. I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you’d like to hear it I can sing it for you.
Dave Bowman: Yes, I’d like to hear it, HAL. Sing it for me.
HAL: It’s called “Daisy.”
[sings while slowing down]
HAL: Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do. I’m half crazy all for the love of you. It won’t be a stylish marriage, I can’t afford a carriage. But you’ll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two.
2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick, 1968

Batty: I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time… like tears in rain… Time to die.
Deckard: [narrating] I don’t know why he saved my life. Maybe in those last moments he loved life more than he ever had before. Not just his life – anybody’s life; my life. All he’d wanted were the same answers the rest of us want. Where did I come from? Where am I going? How long have I got? All I could do was sit there and watch him die.
Blade Runner, Scott, 1982

Classics

Mary: Bread… that this house may never know hunger.
[Mary hands a loaf of bread to Mrs. Martini]
Mary: Salt… that life may always have flavor.
[Mary hands a box of salt to Mrs. Martini]
George Bailey: And wine… that joy and prosperity may reign forever.
[George hands Mr. Martini a bottle of wine]
It’s a Wonderful Life, Capra, 1946

Who are those guys?
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Hill, 1969

Captain Renault: I’ve often speculated why you don’t return to America. Did you abscond with the church funds? Run off with a senator’s wife? I like to think you killed a man. It’s the Romantic in me.
Casablanca, Curtiz, 1942

I don’t know when I came to realize it, but my entire life can be summarized with sound bites.
Mi Vita Loca, Lee McBride, 2011

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Filed under Film

Hey Now, Hey Now

Yes.  This is a picture of a diminutive woman praying at the side of her bed.

Her name is Mother Abigail Freemantle.

She’s 106 years old, and still makes her own bread.

Driving in the car yesterday and Crowded House comes on with “Don’t Dream It’s Over.”

Normally, classic-slash-retro rock (generally anything dating from 1960-1987) is an anathema to me.  My nightmare is getting stuck in bumper to bumper traffic in the summertime beside some yahoo playing Q107 with the windows down.  When this happens – and it does, I tellya, far more often than you’d imagine – I always visually scan my car in hopes of finding something I can throw through their window that would both punish them and render their stereo useless in one fell swoop.  I never actually throw anything, it’s the catharsis the fantasy brings that’s important.  Thinking about throwing something prevents me from throwing, you see?

(Aside: Further, I’m a horrible station-switcher.  I’m awful, especially so while driving. I need to have a song to sing to.  I don’t care about the news, I don’t care about the weather, I just need to sing a singable song.  The only exception to this rule would be whilst listening to The Vinyl Cafe with Stuart McLean on CBC, in which case everybody just better shut the hell up.)

Back to Crowded House.

In 1994, a four-part mini-series was televised which was based on Stephen King’s novel, The Stand.  Appropriately, it was titled The Stand (I know, right?)  I still have the four VHS tapes my then-boyfriend used to record it for me, Acura commercials and all.  Now, there are several cringe-worthy moments in the show, most of them parts intended to be frightening, like Jamey Sheridan turning into the mullet-sporting, jean-jacketed Devil (Randall Flagg) himself, and being forced to engage in dialogues such as:

Randall Flagg: Oh! I never even introduced myself, did I? Pleased to meet you, Lloyd. Hope you guess my name.
Lloyd Henreid: Huh?
Randall Flagg: Oh, uh… nothing. Just a little classical reference.

Shudder.  Is that bad, or is that bad?

However, there are some remarkably brilliant and poignant moments as well.

One of the best of these occurs when two young people, Harold Lauder and Frannie Goldsmith, who have lost their families to a mysterious plague, sit together one evening listening to an old, portable record player.  In the mini-series, it’s Frannie (a still young, but maturing Molly Ringwald) who brings out the player, however it’s Harold (Corin Nemec of Parker Lewis Can’t Lose fame) who brings it over to Fran’s house in the novel.  Here’s the paragraph:

“Music of a dead world.”  Doesn’t that take your breath away?  And here’s the scene.  Click on the link.  I’m serious.  Do it now.  Sometimes, just sometimes, the classics can bring back more than just embarrassing memories of high school dances.  Just close your eyes and listen…

There is freedom within, there is freedom without
Try to catch the deluge in a paper cup

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Filed under Film, Music