There are a few things in life that I despertely fear. These include lumber trucks on freeways, Asian gangs, and being lazy. I just saw a movie that played into two of my greatest fears: being pushed off the subway into an oncoming train by a random psycho (or a trained assassin who has been ordered to kill me because the Blackwater- style mercenary group for whom I work as a double agent realized that I am going to betray them because I'd rather make out with a married, dopey, delightful Ben Affleck) and vermin. That's right, I saw the new politico thriller State of Play at the Union Square Theater.
I had the distinct pleasure of attending with my BFF Brooke D who is like a less self- aware female Michael Scott with a Massachusetts accent and an ample bosom. Among us, we shared a smorgasbord of, well, the concession stand. One preview was about some homosocial (below: The Ones Who Got Away) ritual in which Seth Rogen types whine about "the one who got away." As Brooke and I mauled one another for the last Milk Dud, we locked eyes in a moment of clarity and said, "We are totally the ones who got away, and here we are."
Anyway, State of Play is an excellent escapist thriller that captured and enraptured me for several reasons.
First, I have always wanted a exciting job, maybe one that deals with crime or secrets.
Unfortunately, it turns out that I am not predisposed to this sort of enterprise. I took the preliminary personality tests for the CIA my senior year of college, and the results demonstrated that I would give up national security information if tickled. In this movie, the crime fighters are the unlikely duo of Rachel McAdams and Russell Crowe. They are hard- nosed journalists who burn the midnight oil over styrofoam coffee cups with few costume changes. I have never understood the appeal of Crowe, he looks like a droopy eyed half wit, or as New Yorker film critic David Denby described, "like a dumpling in a wig." So this case cracking duo gets to do exciting things like steal crime scene evidence from the police and spy and secretly video tape Jason Bateman in a seedy motel.
Another riveting plot twist in the evening was that between fistfuls of snack and shouting at the movie screen, Brooke D spotted a RAT in the theater. I detest all vermin anywhere, even in little shirts and when they have jobs like in Cinderella, but a movie theater is the worst venue to spot one of the devil's creatures because a) it's dark b) it is socially unacceptable to scream in movie theaters c) you can't leave because you just spent 50 dollars at the refreshment stand and if you bring all your treats out into the world a thousand eyes will judge and d) don't touch my popcorn, rat! I refused to look and had to do my breathing exercises lest I not lose my shit and start punching myself in the head in sheer terror, but homegirl swears up and down that she saw the whiskered scoundrel. We are living in "Recession NYC '00s" where rats can go to the movies, a time that we will one day become nostalgic for, a la Taxi Driver New York. Rats in the movies! A moment in time, to be certain. So State of Play gets two thumbs up for helping me face my fears. The only downside is that I haven't left my apartment since last Wednesday...