December 3rd, 2005

caillebotte_man at his window

Movie Night

TCM ran La Dolce Vita las night. It was part of their series of movies selected by fashionista Isaac Mizrahi, and the presentation included a wraparound in which he was interviewed about how he was influenced by the movie. While I'm glad he chose this movie for the series (it almost never gets shown anymore), I was not pleased by the interview, in which he blathered a bit about how, when he first saw it, he was inspired to lose ten pounds because all the people in the movie were so hot, and he wanted to be like them. Then he praised the glamour of the movie for its positive influence on contemporary fashion design (especially his own.)

I know that fashionistas tend to be a bit shallow, but is that really all he saw in that movie? The glamorous folk don't come off very well in that tough-minded film (and neither does much else about the modern world.) Watching it tonight, I was again struck by how prescient Fellini's vision was. The failings of the world of celebrity and glamour which he exposed in La Dolce Vita have since spread so far as to become the dominant mode of contemporary culture. I suppose that this means that, as a cautionary warning, the movie was a failure. Presumably, a lot of people now see it the same way Isaac Mizrahi sees it-- as a depiction of some sort of ideal world of luxury and glamour, rather than as a depiction (among other things) of the sad emptiness of pointless self-indulgence.

I don't think of it as Fellini's failure, though. His intent is clear enough for anyone who knows how to pay attention. The problem is that too few people do pay attention. Maybe a movie needs more corpses before they'll take notice of it. La Dolce Vita has only four, not counting the big fish at the end. But it remains one of my favorite movies, whether a wide audience gets it or not.

Movment Becomes Electric

My neck wants to go out (not in the night-on-the-town sense, but in the one-vertebra-losing-its-grip-on-another sense.) I attribute this in part to the reduction in exercise I invariably suffer when the season of short, cold days comes around, and in part to the fact that I've just removed a tree from my room (not a tree inexplicably growing through the floor, nor a tree recently killed as a sacrifice to Wotan and then cunningly disguised as a tribute to Jesus, but rather a tree which has been turned into paper and printed on.) It's not good to do a lot of lifting and carrying after a couple of weeks of mostly sedentary behavior. Sitting in front of the computer for too long isn't helping, either. I hope this doesn't mean a trip to the chiropractor for a neck adjustment. I don't mind the chiropractic adjustments of my back-- in fact I actually enjoy most of them-- but I really hate getting my neck worked on, even though my chiropractor is a well-regarded neck-yanking specialist. It just feels kind of icky. Well, at least I've gotten all that obsolete printed matter out of my way.

To nobody's surprise, it's still cold here, though the sun was out all day. We didn't have a particularly wintry winter last year, so I guess we have to make up for that now. I don't know how prepared I am, psychologically, for a long, cold winter. Some of them make me want to crawl into a cave with a bear and just sleep. Others piss me off because I have to wear so many uncomfortable layers of clothes and sleep under so many encumbering blankets. I do hope there are no massive snowfalls this year, though. Those are the worst.

Midnight snack now, I think.