4th of July: We went out for Indian dinner to celebrate, on account of Columbus having been looking for India. It was a *really* good meal, yum.
Furniture: Our living room furniture, which was not new when we moved in, has devolved to the point that when you sit in it you sink into the depths of dischair, so one of the many points I negotiated for our new lease was new furniture. I volunteered to go look for it myself (to the landlord’s *obvious* relief), so I finally made a decision yesterday, got the amount to spend cleared by the landlord, and bought them (after driving only a moderately altered bargain; I could’ve done better, but it wasn’t my money so I didn’t care that much). So we get new chairs and a new two-seater couch on Tuesday. This room will look very different indeed. On the definite up side, the cats will fit beneath the new furniture, so they’ll be able to collect their own cat toys when they knock them beneath the couch. :)
Raspberries: we had a raspberry on our raspberry bush yesterday! In celebration, we plucked and ate it. It was awful. :)
A review of “Public Enemies” beneath the cut, because it got rather long and has some spoilers, though nothing big.
“Public Enemies”: Long, but boring. The sound was very, very bad, which may have been the theatre’s fault, but I’m quite sure the film’s lighting was not the theatre’s fault. For some reason they apparently decided to use 1930s lighting. Not 1930s film lighting, just 1930s lighting. Everything was very dark. Being unable to see him kind of defeats the point of watching a film with beautiful Johnny Depp.
While we’re on the topic of actors, I’m really quite over Christian Bale. I’d like to see him, say, emote. One reviewer said “The corners of his mouth almost turn up in this one”, which is actually literally true. What I’d really like is to see him do a romantic comedy, just to see if he can act.
Also, while the female lead acted the part competently enough, it would have been more convincing if they had, say, cast a woman with some kind of vague connection to a Native American heritage for the half-Menominee Billie Frechette. *Particularly* if you were going to cast her against Cherokee-blooded Johnny Depp. As it was, when she announces “Daddy was French, Mama was Menominee. Most men don’t like that part,” I more or less expected Depp to say, “Hello, have you *looked* at my bone structure?”
And while I realize the steady-cam had not been invented in the 30s, it has been invented now. For God’s sake, directors, learn to embrace it again. Enough with the Blair Witch shit. The human eye and mind do not ever process visuals the way a bouncing camera does, and it’s equal parts annoying, distracting and sickening.
As far as the actual *film* was concerned, there was no sense of time, so it could have taken place over a week, although it apparently took place over more like a year. There was no convincing development of Dillinger (Depp) and Billie’s relationship at all. There was no motivation given for Purvis’s (Bale) cold methodical hunting of Dillinger and other gangsters, so one has to assume “because they’re the bad guys” is sufficient, but it wasn’t really. J. Edgar Hoover, who was played as a glory-mongering cad, was really considerably more interesting than Purvis, because hey, at least you got where he was coming from. In fact, he was more interesting than Dillinger, who had moments of charm because hey, Johnny Depp, but who was mostly an enigma. Deeply loyal, okay, sure, but why? Frechette was the only one I ended up caring about at all, and that was largely because she had one exceedingly awesome, if moderately inexplicable–because of the whole lack of character & relationship development–scene where her sheer moxy won my heart. Aside from that, there was really no reason to care about anyone in the film, and I didn’t.
There were so many characters–FBI, Chicago police, Texas Rangers, bank robbers, syndicate gangsters–and the lighting was so bad, that it was nearly impossible to keep track of who was who, or what side they were on. There’s an unbelievably long and ultimately bewildering night-time shoot-out about two-thirds of the way through, and I’m still not sure who the hell died, because by all appearances it was Dillinger, only then they suddenly cut away to him being somewhere else entirely, and not dead. In the film’s penultimate scene I honestly had no idea who the players were; my impression was the man who took Dillinger down had more or less appeared out of nowhere. (Apparently he didn’t; Ted told me which of the many, many law enforcement people he was, but it’s something I should’ve been able to follow myself, you know? o.O)
Overall, that’s two and a half hours of my life I won’t get back, but on the other hand, it gave me something to shred, so it’s not a total loss. :)
(x-posted from the essential kit)