|A bottle of wine, a mediocre movie, and writing implements
||[Apr. 9th, 2008|09:46 am]
Here’s what happens when you leave me alone for a weekend with a movie, bottle of wine, Kudrasslipper’s previous post about the things in your head that should best stay there…and a pad and pen within reach:|
The wine was a lovely rose from Bonny Doon. Again, there ARE pink wines worth drinking. That I managed to leave a quarter bottle for the shrimp the next day show remarkable restraint on my part and supports my argument that the following “notes” were not the product of alcohol overindulgence. Writing actually interferes with my drinking. (Hemingway is rolling over in his grave. For more than one reason. Mostly because I just referenced him.) Lowland Scot will hopefully feel better that for dinner this night, I made a box of Annie’s mac and cheese and stirred a can of tuna into it. I tried, in a fit of self-indulgence and sloth, to eat it straight from the pot, but as I was laying on the couch, resting my knee and ankle on orders from the Captain and Fetch, I couldn’t manage it and had to break down and eat it civilized like from a bowl. Strawberries for dessert was as close to a vegetable I got.
Why? Because I went to Lutheran School. Because when we moved to a predominantly Catholic town, it amused me as one of the few Protestant students in the school to concentrate on the Protestant Reformation as a paper/thesis topic and it’s always fun to watch and see how poorly a movie stacks up against actual events. I’m a sucker for movies set in the 16th century – costumes, architecture, portrayal of life styles. And there’s Joe Fienne’s big brown spaniel eyes.
The movie…sorta sucked. Overwrought in all the wrong places, tragically flat in others. Frantically historically inaccurate, painting Luther as a slightly deranged, way too modest and spiritual saint. (It was sponsored in part, by the Lutheran Church…so it is absolute propaganda) In true Lutheran fashion, he was only deranged at night, in the privacy of his own cell. But that isn’t really the way it went down. Luther was an obstinate, argumentative, self-aggrandizing asshole, loving arguing with authority only a little bit more than he loved his food, drink and women – and much of his outrage at the time was very well-deserved and directed. But despite that, there was also some nice eye candy, and fodder for the following stream of consciousness:
Joseph Fiennes has very large hands. Very. It’s giving me impure thoughts. But after several minutes of the film, I’m struggling to hang onto those thoughts because in my head, Tonsure=Birth Control. This is NOT a good look for him.
Fabulous shots of a pack of greyhounds running down a boar. Although when it’s time to kill the boar, the greyhounds are not to be seen. Because of course, they’re still running after the lure that the trainer had off-camera. Also, the soundtrack has them baying the whole time they’re running. Ummm, they don’t do that. And some stunningly beautiful horseflesh. The carthorse is giving me impure thoughts. Although where someone who travels by rude farmer’s cart would get a fine piece of horse like that, I have no idea. Borrowed him from the prince? And all of the horses are freshly bathed and combed, at all times. I HATE that.
It’s at this point, a quarter of the way through the movie that I realize that despite having spent all of that time studying this time period, I don’t remember how it ends, what happens to Luther. Hmmm. Okay, so I did concentrate more on Wycliff…I console myself with that and pour another glass of wine. It won’t help with my memory, but I will care less.
By now, his tonsure has grown out, thank goodness and he’s starting to look hot again. But then he has to start talking about God…and that’s always a bit of a damper for me. And I think to myself, as Church officials are bitching about what a pain in the ass he’s become…well, that’s what you get when you give a German lawyer religion…
Am jerked back to movie criticism by “Luther’s depressed, milord” Depressed? I’m pretty sure that’s not a 16th century thought. How about melancholy? That would be a nice tie-in to the theories that the Reformation, in part, gave rise to the cult of Melancholia in 16th-17th century England – Dowland, my fav-o-rite! See, I really did study this once…
I’ve just watched a terribly weak scene where Luther confronts his ex-professor who’s gotten a bit…carried away. It was the 16th century version of “You, cut it out. That’s enough. This is MY gig.” And, 100,000 dead peasants…that’s like, what, a million in today’s currency?
By now I’m well into the wine, and well into the eye-rolling, but “Luther’s a theologian, milord, he fights with his words and his tongue, not a sword.” Now, that’s HOT. Although tongue and sword…now we’re talking!
In my cups, as much as the movie sucks, and being the first person to trashtalk and belittle the intellect of the great unwashed masses…I’m still moved, as I was as a teenager, by the notion that the people should be able to read their own scriptures and talk directly to their God. Although then I think of what’s happened to modern American Christianity and think…hmm. Maybe we would have been better off…
The special features were laughable. They took three interviews with the major actors and split them up so that each question asked and answered was its own menu item. Oh, please, don’t even bother. Although it was worth it to hear Ustinov say “Well, I’m no longer surprised that they died at age 40 at that time. Those costumes pulled you in all the wrong directions, like wearing curtains. It must have just exhausted them.”
The only good thing about the movie being not very good was that it made the transition to regular television less painful. But my comments on the commercials will have to wait for another post.