Sunday, January 17, 2010

Let's Go to the Movies!: Crazy Heart

I stated a few weeks ago that outings to the movies are my current raison d’etre, which is a euphemism for a sociopathic misanthropy and lack of interest in real life humans. This is slowly but steadily resulting in a Unabomber- esque lifestyle/ appearance. If this keeps up I’m going to have to start a satellite blog called “Let’s Go to the Movies: The Unraveling of a Bottle Blond with Weight to Lose.” Or maybe this recurring column synecdochially represents the whole: me, alone, in a darkened room, buried under empty snack wrappings with popcorn in my bra, crying.

But how will I ever rejoin “humanity” and get back to my modeling career when movies like Crazy Heart are playing at a theater near you? Well, maybe not near you, this gem probably hasn’t come to your bullshit town yet, where they’re still playing “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.” Once Jeff Bridges wins best actor (That’s right! I’m calling it! You heard it here first! I’d like to thank the Academy!) it’ll probably show alongside the Method Man vehicle “How High is Too High When My Homeboy Christens Himself Big Baby Jesus."

Holy mackerel! This movie is good. Paloma Zenaida is a little bit country after all, and will only speak of herself in the third person from this point forward. Crazy Heart is a resplendent tale of a washed up country singer named Bad Blake, and boy is he bad! He’s a- drinkin’ and a- smoking and a- effin old lady butterface party moms until an angelic but not cloying aspiring journalist (I can categorically relate) played by Maggie Gyllenhaal saves him from himself but then he fucks it all up because he’s a psycho and a wino but all is not lost for our anti- hero as he realizes that redemption doesn’t always come in the form of narcissistic romantic relationships but rather from doing good deeds and fishing with Robert Duvall and cleaning off the cigarette butts and collection agency notices the floor of your scumbag jack shack apartment and making art and whatever and there you have it! I allow that the story lends itself better to the big screen, if you can believe it.

There are two parts of this film that make it a modern classic other than Jeff Bridges stumbling around, simultaneously hilarious and tragic, or tragicomic. One is the T-Bone Burnett soundtrack, especially the catchy tune “Funny How Falling Feels Like Flying,” to which I am writing a companion piece called “Funny How Falling Feels Like Falling Directly On My Ass.” The other is the shots of the great American southwest, the grizzled, withered, desolate landscape reflecting Bridges’ character. There are so many shots all the seedy motels with half- filled pools that make me doggone patriotic and restless to hit the ol’ road with nothing but my expired driver’s license and childlike wonder. It depicts a down-on- your- luck world that feels almost foreign on this smug little island, a world where the Angelika crowd (impatient, aging hipsters) walks out of the theater saying, “Oh well isn’t that sweet, poor white people have culture too! I’m so glad I just saw this independent film to broaden my limited definition of personal triumph over addiction and Nashville’s hegemony over country music.”

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