Tuesday, November 22, 2005

The Case Against Indie-Film Angst

WARNING: Entry contains unhealthy sentiments intended for otherwise attached and oblivious celebrity who may or may not be already reading this blog. Domesticity will not be held responsible for any psychological trauma resulting from reading said sentiments.

As you can see by my newly updated Blogger profile, I have an affinity for the things that are considered to be guilty pleasures by others. Take me to a karaoke bar and you can guarantee that I will not only be the first person singing up front, but I will be the first person pestering the DJ with a list of requests for the rest of the night. (Don't believe me? There's at least a couple of karaoke-bar DJs here in Honolulu who will be more than willing to give you a first-hand account.) Take me to a record store and I'm going to be right by the listening stations, looking for NOW That's What I Call Music! and lip-synching the lyrics of "Drop It Like It's Hot." Most of the time I spend on the phone with my brother - long distance to the Mainland, I tell you - is spent on discussing obscure '70s television shows and the paperback novels that our Dad used to bring home to us as kids. (In Dad's defense, he's the same guy who instilled a love of reading for all three of us kids by also bringing home Newsweek and the International Herald Tribune, so I can't blame him for not being the kind of guy who reads Hemingway in his free time.)

That said, you may wonder if there's anything - anything - that would bring me more shame. More shameful than watching the double bill of Antiques Roadshow and The This Old House Hour every Sunday. More embarrassing than being one out of the dozens of people in Oahu who has yet to be sucked into a Korean soap opera. More gut-wrenching, even, than the time I almost got caught reading the "Celebrity Endowments" thread on the old Fametracker boards.

Well, that moment has come, and I believe that I've finally reached my low:

I have rented GARDEN STATE on Netflix.

And not only have I added said movie to my queue, I have actually put it at the top of my queue - right after I finish with Dodgeball (I love you too, Vince!) and edging out both His Girl Friday and Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior. (Mopey emo disaffection displacing witty banter and radical ass-kicking on a Netflix queue? Not on my watch.)

Seriously. I hate Natalie Portman. I can't stand mopey indie bands. (Frou Frou, I'm looking at you.) And I think Zach Braff should stick to Scrubs. Come to think of it, this movie - not to mention the way it was marketed, and the hipster fandom surrounding the soundtrack - was practially designed to irritate me, the way Reality Bites and Clueless did when I was in high school. (Frankly, the last flick that I thought had "spoken to my generation" was Singles, which then made my 16-year old self want to move to Seattle and work for a feminist zine. Then I dumped Sassy for Entertainment Weekly.) I'm sorry, folks, but I'm afraid this movie will not age well.

In that case, then, there is only one person to blame for this shameful abomination on my already spotty record. And even then, "blame" is too strong of a word, considering that I have yet to find a movie on you-know-who's filmography that won't make me throw my shoe collection at the TV, or send me running to the nearest parish priest after I've thrown my shoes at the TV. Until I can curb my shoe-throwing during high-quality dramatic indie films, the only safe way for me to entertain my fantasy of becoming Mrs. Meimei Sarsgaard is... this, before Jarhead finally makes it to the dollar theater.

At this point, how else will I be able to help myself? He could probably show up any minute now in a Mariah Carey video, and I'd still not hate him. Heck, he could probably end up acting out a live version of all 20-something chapters of "Trapped in the Closet" with Clive Owen, Rodrigo Santoro, and Kiefer Sutherland, and I'd still adore him to bits.

(Peter, baby, I love you... but please don't turn into Ethan Hawke. Better yet, please don't turn into Edward Norton, or I'll end up writing long, depressing essays about how I used to have a crush on you. Call me! xoxox, Mei.)

Now that I've gotten that unhealthy sentiment out of the way, I'll be able to give you a real movie review when Netflix finally delivers the movie to my doorstep... any time now.

UPDATED, 11/22: Edited because "filmography" and "cinematography" are two different words that are not synonymous with each other. Also because I ended up catapulting Dead Man Walking to #2 on my Netflix queue when I realized that a very young Petey-boo shows up in it as the murder vic. Okay, I'll stop now.

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