The Heat

May 27th, 2005  |  Published in old and busted

Well, it was hot today. Not scorching hot, but 91 degrees hot, which feels awfully, well, hot. Especially up in my second floor, south-facing office with a big window. I bought a cheap, super-small air conditioner. We’re getting one more for Ben’s room, but that’s on the north side and still stays pretty cool with a fan. Even though I’m now prepared for worse, I hope it maybe cools down a little before we’re thrown into the part of the Portland year that everyone except people living here is completely ignorant of: The sweltering, dry, baked-dirt summer.

The author of “The Darth Side” has put his whole collection of entries up as a PDF, with extra material that brings it to 91 total pages. He has a PayPal donation button up. I downloaded my copy and slid some love his way. I know a few other people who read here enjoyed his blog, too. Maybe it’s worth a few bucks to you?

Closer

Al and I watched “Closer” last night.

Tough one to watch, but compelling, even when it finally just sets aside its sense of humor (mostly) and gets into letting its characters spiral down the emotional drain.

I wanted to hate it the same way I was unhappy with Solondz after “Happiness” or LaBute after “Your Friends and Neighbors,” but then something would happen in the midst of the misery that elevated it somehow, and made me feel less like I was being punished or merely having my nose rubbed in shit, and more like the writer’s ear wasn’t all that bad, even if he chose an unhappy subject.

Most unhappily, I understood parts of what was going on in Larry’s head even if I didn’t like some of it, and the things that came out of his mouth at points were, well, things that went through my head once upon a time. The difference, I guess, is that he was close enough to the surface of his own skin for an essentially vicious side of his nature to poke through.

On the “actors and acting” side of the production, I thought Natalie Portman nailed a few of her scenes, Clive Owen was right on, and Julia Roberts worked for me. Weird, considering that I don’t really want to like her. Jude Law? I guess.

Random “comment from someone that irritated me:”

> However, as Edward Albee said, the purpose of art is hold a mirror up to the audience’s noses and say: This is who you are… now change. And that’s precisely what this film does.

I had no idea that was art’s purpose. Did they sneak that in as part of some appropriations bill last year?

Canonical Sources

I unlazied this evening long enough to pull my “Return of the Jedi” DVD off the shelf and load up the scene where Ben explains the whole family situation to Luke.

It looks like some of the continuity gaps discussed over the past few days in the comments to “The Passion of the Anakin” are limited to the shooting script. The “Special Edition” RotJ scene doesn’t have the line “So I took you to live with my brother Owen on Tatooine … and your mother took Leia to live as the daughter of Senator Organa, on Alderaan.”

I don’t know whether I’m remembering hearing that line from the original theatrical release, a subsequent viewing on tape at some point, or maybe even having read the novelization in high school.

George’s refusal to release the original cuts of the first trilogy pretty much fix that continuity issue, anyhow.

Watching “Star Wars” this evening, the general issues with the time spent between Eps III & IV really leapt into relief. Owen, Ben and Beru seem sort of old for how old they looked in “Sith,” for instance.

Oh, and one other continuity bug: When Luke first meets Ben and asks if he knows Obi-Wan Kenobi, Ben tells him:

> Well of course, of course I know him. He’s me! I haven’t gone by

the name Obi-Wan since oh, before you were born.

While the script to “Sith” might not involve him being called Obi-Wan to his face in the last five minutes of the action, well … I guess I’m splitting hairs.

This evening’s Star Wars viewing was also profoundly changed by “Sith.” A certain parallelism establishes itself between the sequences with Luke and Leia that wasn’t there, even after “Return of the Jedi” established their history. The cuts back and forth seem less like cuts between subplots and more like cuts between characters, catching us up with what kind of people those infant twins have become over the last 20 years.

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