This is Epth Nation

Epth is a state of mind, not a place. Reading this will give you a virtual drivers license in that state, but you'll still need to be 21 to purchase alcohol. And you can't get any there anyway, so stop asking.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

My wife and I watched Fight Club for the first time last night. I never realized it was that kinda film. You know, the weird and funny kind. I had always thought of it as a Van Damme film with better actors, but then heard some stuff about it and decided to investigate. What I saw surprised me. It's got great acting, an intersting story, and is chock full of ideas. It's an idea movie. It's got so many ideas the audience has a hard time processing them all. That makes them uncomfortable, and I like movies that make the audience uncomfortable by making them think, as opposed to those who do so by sucking.

The truth is it's a far better film than it has any right to be, and even manages to fit in some good messages in under its umbrella of nihilism: You are not the sum total of your posessions; the way many men live life today is akin to just waiting to die; other things I can't think of right now. And it's really, really well-directed and acted. And when the twist hits...WOO baby. It becomes a Lynchian dual-identity fun fest. Not to give away the ending or anything. I'm not Rosie O' Donnell.

The bad part of all this, just like in director David Fincher's other 90's movies (Se7en and The Game) is that the action onscreen is filmed in such a way as to disolve into bleak unrelenting stylistic dark sameness about 1 1/2 hours in, and as such has a hard time keeping your attention. It's hard to pinpoint, really, why this happens. Fight Club is so bloody, so stylish, so fast-paced, so full of ideas in every single scene, that it becomes tiring to watch at times. You become numb, or exhausted. Of course, it's better to have too many ideas than no ideas at all. And the dark humor helps mute the bleakness anyway.

Fight Club is better (and more ambitious) than those other two movies. It's myriad ideas, flash-cuts, and subliminal fun all combine to make sure that no scene is wasted. The director dives fully into the script, and so do the actors, which makes it fun to watch. The twist at the end makes you want to watch it over again. The only real problem is that it becomes really silly towards the end. Like really silly, with the whole everybody saying "Yes, sir" and stuff. For about 15 minutes it's like a really cheesy silly "They Live"-style horror movie. I half expected Brad Pitt and Edward Norton to start fighting over sunglasses.

Overall, there is so much good about the movie it's impossible not to recommend it. Except to anarchists. They should definitely not see this movie, because they are destined to misinterpret it. For the rest of us, I give it 4 overpriced popcorns out of 5.

Monday, September 13, 2004

I get all my information from Baby Boomers.

Does any band sound more like the late 60's than the Doors? I wasn't alive then, so my sole impression of it is from old news footage, movies, and music. My picture of the time, then, is a lot of dirty people with goat hair being gassed by police in riot gear as "Break on Through to the Other Side" plays on. To those people alive back then -- was there a lot of that, or were there normal/non-goat-like/non-riot-police people around? And how could you guys have elected Nixon? Ok, I guess you could say the same thing about Clinton.

Speaking of Politics and Religion, I'm going to be going to this great Bible study about Government and Christianity that should give me much food for thought over the coming weeks. Be warned...I will be beating you down with this stuff, to flesh it out in my mind. After all, stream-of-consciousnesss rambling is what a blog is for, isn't it?

I don't usually link, but here are blogs I read:

Mark Cuban's blog, which recounts his war-of-words with Donald Trump, who makes Cuban look measured and intelligent by comparison. Also contains lots of theories on NBA refereeing, and I'm not kidding.

Dynamist Blog by Virginia Postrel, noted businessy thinker. She talks a lot about her books, but also lays out the case for economic advancement (also called dynamism, which means loving outsourcing). She also likes to discuss how aesthetics affects how things sell (also called why people think Macs are cool), and other random subjects. And, she's hot. Just kidding. Sorta.

A final thought:
Lost in all the hubbub about the alleged CBS Bush military memos is the central question nobody is asking: What does alleged disobedience from a person 32 years ago have anything to do with that person today? If he did disobey orders and get away with it because he's privileged, so what? It was 32 years ago. I was fricking born 32 years ago. Does this reveal a current character flaw about him? Since when do we, the American voters, care about character? This "memo-gate" is just something to talk about while the issues facing us go undiscussed. And if there ever was a time when Americans needed some good discussion of the issues before them, it's now.

Thank you for your support.