Friday, March 18, 2005

Gillian Guesses: Boiled Eggs!

Last night I hung out with VP, and we went to see a film @ MoMA in their Canadian Front 2005 series. We met first @ Brasserie, where I had a couple rum & cokes (which I call "Captain Cokes" now) in the spirit of green Day, the Irish holiday, not the band. VP ate a boiled egg and I snatched a bunch of li'l pizzas for him from the bar. Then we went to MoMA and saw this Canadian film called The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess, which starred a husky-voiced bottle blond and a ~6-year old blond future Britney Spears lookalike, and others which were less memorable. I guess you'd call it an art film--it was kind of scattered like some art films can be. Basically the film told the story of Gillian Guess, but I got lost trying to figure it out, so all I can tell you is that Gillian Guess's father left her mother when she was young; she did some things sexually as a teenager that she wasn't ready for; she was poor and then rich; she had an affair with a murder suspect while she was on the jury of his trial. That's what I could gather, but it didn't all add up well. There were some really good parts of the film--if you just took one section or another of it and extended it, that would be a good film. But taken as a whole, it seems like the director just crammed every idea he could come up with into it; the result ended up cluttered, scattered and uneven. Even the way the director told the story changed in different sections of the film; it started out with flashbacks to the recent past with some relative chronological direction, then it started jumping around in the distant past with no chronological direction at all; at some times it went very surreal, but then came back... In fact, there was a part where for a brief moment it turned into a musical of sorts, with a character breaking out into a pop song and a whole thing with the song. I found that a bit hackneyed, but I usually like that direction. However, that happened ONCE in the film--it was a completely isolated incident, and it just stuck out as something completely unlike the entire rest of the film. It might have been cool if there were more than ONE incident like that in the movie.

There were a couple really cool scenes in the movie, though. They were flashbacks of when Gillian was a li'l girl (the actress who played her was an incredible actress, especially for someone so young). In one she came home to her mother, who was drinking but wasn't totally plastered yet. Her mother was crying and the girl asked where her father was. Her mother snapped at her: "WHERE DO YOU THINK??!!!" Of course after looking at the girl she knew that the girl didn't think anything. Then after a moment the mother said something like, "I shoulda been a secretary. They get all the men." (This is of course the inspiration for the graphic at the top of this post, created by Mark Baratelli) Keep in mind that this scene happens in probably the late 60s/early 70s (and kudos to the cinematographer for coloring the film to suggest that). In the next memorable scene, which is also mother/daughter, the daughter comes home to find her mother absolutely shitfaced, standing (barely) and holding a cocktail. She says to the girl: "I'm going out. Do I look dangerous? Men like that." Of course the whole time she keeps very nearly stumbling and then catching herself--this is meant to imply that she's so drunk she can barely stand, but frankly, it didn't look realistic at all. Usually when you're drunk you don't stumble if you're not trying to walk. The woman actually looked like she was on heroin, but without that falling-asleep-then-OOPS!-almost-fell-asleep thing that goes on in peoples' faces when they're on that. Nonetheless, I just can't get enough of that drunken mother archetype; I love it so well. The movie is worth seeing for those scenes alone.

Not much else. Going to a party over the weekend, lounging, writing, blah and blah. There is this, though: This advertisement. It's supposed to be really funny, but frankly, I don't get it at all. It's this ad that a Brazilian agency made up for a personal lubricant (like KY or Astroglide) to be marketed in France. The tagline reads, in French, something like: Very Powerful Lubricant. Here's the pic. Do you get it?

And that's the beep for now.

Ed Shepp

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