Monthly Archives: May 2009

Boldly biking where no Jen has biked before.

Once I received notification in a fortune cookie that my life would be a bold and daring adventure. I’ve taken that prophetic treat and tried to make the most of it. Last Friday I did something I’ve never done before. … Continue reading

Posted in Food Metaphors | 2 Comments

How I Learned to Love Dada or, in Black and White, Everything is Gray.

Man Ray’s The Return to Reason is one of the most well know Dada films.  The title is ironic.  Dadaism was a movement propitiated by the physchological aftermath of World War I, Freud’s theories, and other events of the first … Continue reading

Posted in Color Metaphors | 1 Comment

What I’m watching: May 17

Grading papers has occupied a lot of my time and thoughts lately, so I’ll just give  an update on what I’m watching.  Netflix has lately granted me the “bonus” fourth DVD as part of their promotion.  Here’s the current list: … Continue reading

Posted in Lists and Netflix Queue Updates | 2 Comments

Wrestling with Spectators

This week I finally saw The Wrestler with Mickey Rourke and Marisa Tomei. I was prepared for good performances, and I agree with much of the critical praise. From the opening, we as spectators are aligned with Rourke’s Randy “the Ram” point of view. Throughout the film the camera travels behind him, linking his life “on stage” in the ring to his “real” life at work and with other people. It is an very touching film, and like another film that really impressed me this year, Frozen River, it highlights people who seem very familiar to me.

But the thing I can’t stop thinking about is the use of violence in this film and consequently, in film in general Continue reading

Posted in Movies I can't stop thinking about | 3 Comments

Comfort Food and Cinematic Experience

The critics who first contended that movies were art stressed the things that film can do that nothing else could. Many filmmakers and critics have interpreted this in different ways, but the movies I keep returning to are the ones that no grand aspirations. They are entertainment, yes, but in the craftsmanship of the romance or adventure or comedy there are the things that stories can do: what makes the story art; that magical something that happens to us when we watch a movie. They are populated by people I feel I know, and yet I am aware they are characters played by actors. Aristotle called it mimesis, Coleridge, the willing suspension of disbelief. And in that suspension, in that mimetic moment I do know them. The story may not be real in some ways, but it is real in others. It lives the way memories or dreams do. And what better medium is there to express dreams or memories? That is what cinema can do, that nothing else can. Comfort to mind and spirit, as good food to the body.

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Posted in Food Metaphors | 2 Comments

Post forthcoming

Jen will soon start blogging about movies.  Until then, here are the vitals: Favorite narrative fiction films of the past three years: Little Miss Sunshine Sweet Land Paris, Je T’aime What’s in my Netflix cue: Satyam, Shivam, Sudaram (Love Sublime) … Continue reading

Posted in Lists and Netflix Queue Updates | 3 Comments