Sunday, October 28, 2007

Recoup. Regather. Relax?

Last week, Monday night, I freaked out a little bit.
And by a little bit, I mean I had a panic attack. or something equally scary and disconcerting.
And I couldn't do anything. I had homework to do, but I just couldn't do it.
And then I woke up in the middle of the night with a terrible sore throat, and could barely swallow without crying.
Health office diagnosis?
Yes, yes. You're allowed to be jealous. You can only wish you too had tonsils that were red, puffy and had white mucousy globules on them (Oh, I'm sorry, was that too descriptive? Are you eating dinner?)
So I took a few days off from my life. I went home and just rested. Yeah, I did homework, but besides that, I just was.
I think sometimes you need something like tonsillitis to get you to slow down and be.
It might be hard to get back into my busy schedule, but I needed to chill out for a few days and re-gather myself.
And because of it, I feel a lttle less insane.
And that's always a good thing.

See this. Feel good.

Director Peter Hedges made a fantastic choice with "Dan in Real Life."
Hedges last movie was "Pieces of April", which I don't know if anyone saw, but all I remember about it was a punked out Katie Holmes on the cover.
Before that, though, he did screen adaptations of the books About a Boy and What's Eating Gilbert Grape?, which were both great books and great movies.
"Dan in Real Life" (go here for apple trailer) stars Steve Carell as Dan, a widowed father of three girls, who meets Marie, played by Juliette Binoche, at a bookstore and starts to really like her, but finds out she's dating his brother Mitch (played by, yes, Dane Cook).
Even though it's a bit off-putting that Dane Cook is in this movie, there is little wrong with this film. It's heart-warming in the non-cheesy way that some movies can be. Everyone in the movie played their parts well, except maybe for one of the daughters, who was a little over dramatic (although delivered one of the best lines- "YOU'RE A MURDERER OF LOVE!")
Oh, and Carole, Ross' wife from "Friends," well, her lesbian lover Susan (no, I don't know her real name) makes an appearance.
So you know. I don't think that's incentive. But, whatever.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Don't Choke.

"What I want is to be needed. What I need is to be indispensable to somebody. Who I need is somebody that will eat up all my free time, my ego, my attention. Somebody addicted to me. A mutual addiction."

Chuck Palahniuk must be one of the most talented writers I've read, if only because his stories are beautiful despite how ugly, graphic, dirty and vile they are.

Choke is about a sex addict, Victor Mancini, who makes his living by pretending to choke in expensive restaurants and then collects money from those who "save" him. He visits his mother, who has Alzheimer's, in the hospital and pretends to be someone different each visit in order to find out how she really feels about him.

Despite that he is by all accounts an insensitive, unfeeling bastard...he isn't.
Palahniuk won't let the reader write Mancini off that way.

Palahniuk's books always make me remember that even people who are incredibly fucked up are still human, still have a heart, and still feel, no matter how infinitesimally small those feelings may be.