Post by James Neibaur Post by Benny Fitzoffheinseit
most people weaned on rock and rap can't stand old musicals. i tried
to make my pals watch singing in the rain once, and they began to
scream. their violent reaction had notthing to do with filmmaking or
whatever. they just thought it was soooo 'gay', two goofy white guys
hopping around to 'lameass' music. for most of my generation, music
is led zeppelin, pink floyd, aerosmith, neil young, brucie, or... even
styx(yech) or reo speedwagon. some might give older stuff like chuck
berry and elvis some respect but never listen to it on a regular
basis. but prior to rock? they think it's lameass, just like the
average moviegoer who digs john woo, tarantino, jackson, bay, etc find
stuff like john ford movies so wimpy and boring.
Oh, yeah, those are called idiots.
you know what i think? it's paradoxical but i think availability has
lessened the value of art and culture.
when there was no vcr or cable, cineastes had to look at film
schedules, get excited about going to the screening, watch intently
since they couldn't press pause or rewind, and then try to keep in
one's memory as best as possible.
but, now that we can order any movie at anytime and see it anyway we
want--especially with dvds--film viewing is no longer special. same
with musical concerts. cds, unlike record albums, do not even need to
be well taken care of. how i miss cleaning those albums, handling them
with utmost care.
to give you an example, a girlfriend of someone i knew took out
several bergman dvds and watched them rather casually, walking back
and forth to the kitchen, pausing, gabbing, changing audio track from
swedish to critic's commentary, etc, etc. these films were not made
to be seen this way.
if we could, with click of a button, revive a beautiful sunset or
night of shooting stars, they would no longer be special. i think art
was more respected and seemed special when it took effort,
expectation, concentration for us to access. now, it's all just a
matter of going to the video store, watching cable, downloading stuff
on the internet, etc.
we have more and there's more sampling but lesser and lesser
concentration, respect, and appreciation.
to give you an example, when i first saw seven samurai in 83, i didn't
have a vcr and many art movies were not even available on vcr. that
movie just stayed with me, day after day. same with hey babu riba and
makioka sisters. after obtaining all three on video, i never really
think about them. i know they are there whenever i want them.
now, of course we want availability, availability is great, and we
don't want to turn back the clock. but we lost as we gained.