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The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by serious crayons on April 09, 2021, 04:54:59 pm »
Is this available only online?

Yes, if you don't want to wait. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/04/12/the-making-of-midnight-cowboy-and-the-remaking-of-hollywood



That was one of the few articles I thought was too short.

I thought so, too!

Quote
I found it depressing for several reasons. First, it was in black-and-white and showed the gritty side of New York in the 1960s, when Times Square had become squalid. The innocent Joe Buck is traumatized by the culture. The ending is sad; Ratso never makes it to the Florida he has dreamed about. The class system has overpowered America's dreams of egalitarianism (which never really existed in the first place).

Well, to clarify, it's not like I mistook it for a rom-com. The ending is extremely sad. It's possible I was too young to get depressed about stuff like a squalid Times Square.

Years ago, I cowrote a story about depressing movies with a movie critic. I know we mentioned Platoon and Leaving Las Vegas. And there was some other movie out at the time about a refugee family that kept running into tragic troubles. I can't remember the name.

I think a friend who accompanied me to Blue Velvet was sorry she'd seen it, but for some reason that didn't bother me. Again, my youth may have shielded me a bit; the first depressing movie I recall -- I mean the kind that lingers for two or three days -- was Platoon. It's why I hate Barber's Adagio.

One year my mom and brother were looking for a movie to rent on Christmas Eve and were considering Leaving Las Vegas. I had to put my foot down and forbid it, even though I was going out for the evening. That one left me depressed for days, too -- it's very well made, so it's not like people shouldn't see it if they dare want. Just not on Christmas Eve!

But I didn't swear off depressing movies until I saw a 1990s Nick Nolte movie called Affliction. I don't remember how it went, but I clearly remember thinking afterward that I no longer want to see movies that leave me feeling worse than I was before, so I decided to avoid them.

Speaking of Nick Nolte, for some reason Prince of Tides didn't depress me too much. In fact I was inspired by that same film critic to write a story about male rape.

I did accidentally watch Requiem for a Dream, and at home on a rainy Saturday afternoon to make it worse. I didn't really know what was going to happen and it was critically acclaimed, so it took me off guard.

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I'm not in the mood for a depressing movie very often, but when I look back on it, depressing movies have been among the best I've ever seen, including MC, BBM, The Hurt Locker, and Slumdog Millionaire. Just a day or so ago, I went to the theater to see the Oscar nominated animated shorts. There were seven of them, some very beautiful, some comical, some heartwarming. But the one I predict will win the Oscar is a very depressing one about gun violence. It's called "If Anything Happens, I Love You."

I distinguish between sad and depressing. BBM was obviously sad but didn't leave me depressed; it left me exhilarated and ready to see it again the very next day! I don't remember being especially depressed by The Hurt Locker, although I can't remember how it ended. I do remember a scene where Jeremy Renner, having been discharged, was grocery shopping and realized how disengaged he felt from that culture, and eventually returned to the war zone. That scene was really useful in helping me understand the culture shock vets must experience when they return from battle to ordinary life.

I can see how Slumdog Millionaire might be depressing, but didn't it have a happy ending?

62
The Culture Tent / Re: Music News
« Last post by CellarDweller on April 09, 2021, 03:20:31 pm »
Holy crap!!!! If you love 90s dance music (and even if you didn't) check out this video from Pentatonix!!

63
The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by Jeff Wrangler on April 09, 2021, 01:40:53 pm »
That was one of the few articles I thought was too short. There is much more to say about the movie. I may have to get the book. (Jeff, this was in the critics section, April 12 issue.)

Thanks. I'm still waiting for that one.

OTOH, I'm currently enjoying the one about the Arecibo telescope in the April 5 issue. I remember hearing about that being used to search for intelligent extraterrestrial life.
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The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by Front-Ranger on April 09, 2021, 12:38:14 pm »
I'm about halfway through Louis Menand's piece on the making of Midnight Cowboy, and it's really entertaining. Now I know why I liked Menand enough to look him up in the NYC phone book in 1993! Although most of the piece's interest comes from the details of the story itself as opposed to his writing per se.
That was one of the few articles I thought was too short. There is much more to say about the movie. I may have to get the book. (Jeff, this was in the critics section, April 12 issue.)

I've only seen MC once, many decades ago -- on network TV! Meaning I probably missed about half of it, since it was rated X. I remember my mom, who had seen it in a theater, telling me it was really depressing. After I watched I said "What's so depressing about it?' She thought that was funny. Now I wonder if we reacted differently because we saw different cuts or because we were different ages.
I found it depressing for several reasons. First, it was in black-and-white and showed the gritty side of New York in the 1960s, when Times Square had become squalid. The innocent Joe Buck is traumatized by the culture. The ending is sad; Ratso never makes it to the Florida he has dreamed about. The class system has overpowered America's dreams of egalitarianism (which never really existed in the first place).
I don't remember finding movies depressing (as opposed to sad, like Brokeback Mountain) until I was in my 30s. At some point I decided to avoid them whenever possible.
Whoa, for a second there, I thought you meant you decided to avoid all movies. But that can't be, since you obviously saw Brokeback Mountain!

I'm not in the mood for a depressing movie very often, but when I look back on it, depressing movies have been among the best I've ever seen, including MC, BBM, The Hurt Locker, and Slumdog Millionaire. Just a day or so ago, I went to the theater to see the Oscar nominated animated shorts. There were seven of them, some very beautiful, some comical, some heartwarming. But the one I predict will win the Oscar is a very depressing one about gun violence. It's called "If Anything Happens, I Love You."

65
I know. Are we sort of half immune now? That is, we could still get it but are less likely to, or it would be a milder case?

Ya got me.

I was told to call a few days before April 28 to make an appointment for my second shot. I think I'm going to call next week to see if they'll make me an appointment that far ahead. I'm concerned about what might happen after April 19, when everyone becomes eligible for an appointment.
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The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by Jeff Wrangler on April 09, 2021, 10:28:43 am »
I'm about halfway through Louis Menand's piece on the making of Midnight Cowboy, and it's really entertaining. Now I know why I liked Menand enough to look him up in the NYC phone book in 1993! Although most of the piece's interest comes from the details of the story itself as opposed to his writing per se.

Is this available only online? The latest hard copy I've received is this week, i.e., April 5.

It does sound very interesting.

I've never seen Midnight Cowboy.  :(

Incidentally, if you didn't read Judith Thurman on Ann Lowe in the March 29 issue, at least go back and look at the pictures.  ;D
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I know. Are we sort of half immune now? That is, we could still get it but are less likely to, or it would be a milder case?

68
The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by serious crayons on April 09, 2021, 10:11:44 am »
I'm about halfway through Louis Menand's piece on the making of Midnight Cowboy, and it's really entertaining. Now I know why I liked Menand enough to look him up in the NYC phone book in 1993! Although most of the piece's interest comes from the details of the story itself as opposed to his writing per se.

I've only seen MC once, many decades ago -- on network TV! Meaning I probably missed about half of it, since it was rated X. I remember my mom, who had seen it in a theater, telling me it was really depressing. After I watched I said "What's so depressing about it?' She thought that was funny. Now I wonder if we reacted differently because we saw different cuts or because we were different ages. I don't remember finding movies depressing (as opposed to sad, like Brokeback Mountain) until I was in my 30s. At some point I decided to avoid them whenever possible.








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The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by serious crayons on April 09, 2021, 09:44:15 am »
That's been recommended to me, but, having no interest in Hemingway, I'll be skipping it.

I have little interest in Hemingway, but I do have interest in Ken Burns. Also, Hemingway lived for a while in Sun Valley, ID, where I lived for a (much shorter) while and it would be fun to see any scenes set there.

A few years ago someone made a movie about Mariel Hemingway, who maintains this extremely healthy lifestyle (in Sun Valley) in hopes of avoiding the depression and suicide that claimed some of her family members, including her sister, Margaux, as well as her grandfather. I wanted to watch it, but couldn't find it anywhere.

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The Culture Tent / Re: In the New Yorker...
« Last post by Jeff Wrangler on April 09, 2021, 08:28:58 am »
I'm watching Ken Burns' latest oeuvre, a documentary about Hemingway, inspired by its review in this week's issue.

That's been recommended to me, but, having no interest in Hemingway, I'll be skipping it.
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