LNH: Untold Tales of the Looniverse #2

Martin Phipps martinphipps2 at yahoo.com
Sun Sep 24 18:51:23 PDT 2006

Tom Russell wrote:
> Jesse Willey wrote:
> > > Google "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy".
> >
> >   You know Tom-- if a movie, book, movie or TV show
> > was made after 1975 he's going to hate it.  The
> What...?
> > further away from 1975 it was made the more he is
> > going to hate it.
> Oh, you're trying to be funny.  But to be funny, your observations have
> to have some basis in reality, Jesse.
> It's true that I appreciate the classics in all artforms.  But that's
> because classic books, films, television, and comics usually have both
> more substance and heart.
> I don't really enjoy frivolous art, and the whole MTV aesthetic
> certainly turns me off.

That's what I thought. :)

The MTV aesthetic has resulted in things like Catwoman and Man on Fire,
things that look good when they're a trailer but then you realize that
the movie itself is just a ninety minute trailer and the fast cuts then
start to give you a headache. :)

> What I appreciate above all are those modern
> works that don't kowtow to the modern attention span, but expect its
> audience to be intelligent.  Works that expect you to have a little
> life experience, and challenge you.  Works that have heart and depth
> and truth.

I still think Law and Order and CSI are the result of the MTV aesthetic
applied to crime dramas.  I saw a CSI last night and four people got
arrested.  FOUR.  That's one arrest every fifteen minutes.   Now, two
of the four cases were interrelated (one lead directly to the other)
but still that's pretty fast. :)

I think you must like Speilberg.  Few science fiction films are told
like suspense thrillers with the focus being on one character's point
of view but Close Encounters and War of the Worlds both did that by
consistently presenting the point of views of the Richard Dreyfus and
Tom Cruise's characters respectively.  M. Night Shyalaman's Signs also
told the story of an alien invasion from the point of view of a single
family, albiet without as many special effects.  Telling a story from a
single point of view is a big risk IMO because, as you say, the modern
attention span isn't tuned to following a single character around for
the entire length of a movie, but that does seem to be the kind of
story teling you like and, yes, sometimes it does work very well and
make the story seem more poignant and less cheap.  I think we can all
agree though that it is a fairly old fashioned way of telling a story
in this fast paced age of ensemble casts, rapid cuts and quick


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