Saturday, February 27, 2010

"Let's Go to the Show."

That's what we used to call movies, "The Show."   When you wanted to sound more refined you used the longer version, "The Picture Show."  And, when a whole bunch wanted to go, or you didn't have in mind seeing the movie, you went to the Drive-In.  I enjoy a good movie.  Most of the good ones I see these days are DVD rentals, or old movie channel offerings.  I did see a pretty good movie the other night about a cop gone crazy and seeking revenge in the death of his daughter.  However, as I sat there in the dark with Bebe during the pre-show warm-up wondering what we were going to have for supper, it occurred to me I haven't seen many of the more recent offerings.

For one thing the previews are horrible conglomerations of flashing pictures with extremely loud sound effects and music.  At the end of these "trailers" I usually haven't the slightest clue what the movie is about.  They try and bolster their offerings by printing things about the director and previous movies I haven't seen either.  I used to think the movie sound tracks weren't played as loudly as the previews, but I think my ears are numbed sufficiently by the time the main feature comes on it just doesn't seem as loud.  I used to look at the posters lining the walls advertising coming attractions for new possibilities, but the content of most today is so absurd, I don't even bother.  I do recognize most of the younger actors from mug shots, rehab photos, paparazzi offerings, and clips of left wing political rants.

I don't mind a little social commentary (even if I don't feel it necessary) if it is done subtly.  Most of the movies in the line up today are "in your face" kinds of support for all sorts of aberrant life styles and baseless political philosophies.  I know that my late afternoon senior priced tickets aren't going to make you rich, but if  a lot of "boomers, a.k.a. white hairs" quit showing up, it might mean you have to go to the government run county rehabs.

It's all about being real today.  Cinematographers are masters at creating the correct lighting for every situation, but for my money, scenes shot in darkness would better serve the audience if there were enough light to see who or what was in the shot.  Voices talking from the darkness just don't get it, especially if there is also action going on.  Then there is the flashing of a plethora of blinding snippets of different scenes in succession.  I'm sure my opinion of the new special effects is not in vogue, but it definitely requires less of the stunt men when you only see them for a Nano-second.

I know my hearing is going, but even with the vibrating blasts of combined sound effects, musical score, and dialogue, I still don't know what the actors are saying half the time.  They must be teaching the mumbling technique in acting school these days.  Put the mumbling together with a musical score being played louder than the conversations and you have, "No need for a script."

So, my conclusion is "don't go."  I really enjoy many of the young actors, until they use their entertainment platform to support life styles I can't and won't condone.  At that point it really doesn't matter how good their movies are, I won't lend my financial support to their artistic efforts.  I'll bet very few of them read "Pappy's Place" so it is probably an effort in futility.

If there's anything unsettling to the stomach, it's watching actors on television talk about their personal lives.
Marlon Brando


  1. Maybe all the lights and the sound effects are intended to distract us from how bad the dialogue really is!

    Though I'm generations removed from their original audiences, I have quite a liking for old movies, and don't turn off a flick just because it's in black-and-white. Partly because of books, partly because of those stories on film (monochromatic or Technicolor), my imagination fired up, and now I write stories of my own.

    No sound effects or fancy camerawork required.

    And, so far, free admission!

  2. We subscribe to Encore Westerns, and that is most of what we watch. Last movie out together was "Night at the Museum" a few years ago!

  3. Hi gang, I know many of you think I've dropped off the commenting map, but it seems like I have more to do this year. I read books and go to movies and know I could write better manuscripts and scripts if I put my mind to the task. I have been slipping by using my Google reader and checking your blog entries. Thanks for commenting. Pappy

  4. The language is so disgusting now it burns my ears. Much better to rent or watch the oldies but goodies on TV. Jim espedially likes the old Westerns. He shoulda been a Cowboy!!!

  5. You know-I was in 8th grade before I ever went to the show :)We don't ever go now-but like you I don't feel like I'm missing anything. Funny how being an actor can sometimes make you a political expert or so it seems.

  6. This line made me laugh out loud:

    "I do recognize most of the younger actors from mug shots, rehab photos, paparazzi offerings, and clips of left wing political rants."

    Pappy I whole heartedly back you up in your opinions of today's movie-going experience. Hear hear! Your reasons are my reasons why I so rarely venture forth to the cinema these days. Its a total assault on the senses and not a pleasant one. And by and large the movies are garbage. Well look at who is running Hollywood and there is your explanation right there.

  7. Hi Lavinia. Glad you dropped by. Hope things are thawing out in Canada. I intend to write more on the subject later. Have a great week. Pappy


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