Monday, October 16, 2006

Sometimes I feel so happy

OK, I promise not every post is going to be about Art Boy, but he did the sweetest thing last night. I saw on the Entertainment wire at work that the final CBGB concert, headlined by Patti Smith, was about to start and messaged him asking if he could find an audio stream of it anywhere. He never answered. I figured he was watching TV. When I got home, he greeted me at the door with 3 homemade CDs labeled "Patti Smith: CBGB's Last Show." He even apologized for having to use my computer to check his email because his computer was tied up with recording. Patti's famous onstage chattiness seems to have worn on him a bit: "The first CD is mostly sound check," he said, looking tired. Considering he's not a fan of hers and he pretty much had to listen to the whole thing, I thought it was just super sweet. I'm thinking of cooking him a roast.

Today's book: Bram Stoker's "Dracula," not to be confused with the Francie Coppola movie. Rereading the book for the first time in many years - possibly since middle school - I am getting more and more annoyed with that movie. Yeah, I knew it was ridiculous at the time; I even enjoyed how baroque and goofy it was. (Marvelous Nashville Scene film critic Jim Ridley wrote: "It's a shame the filmmakers didn't put an audible 'BOINGGG!' on the soundtrack for every time Keanu Reeves bugs out his eyes and drops his jaw.") But the movie completely inverts the characters of Lucy, Mina and Dracula. Isn't Lucy's seduction more interesting if she's a genuine innocent to start with? What is scarier: being chased by a monster or being chased by a lovelorn Gary Oldman? And I have never given Mina enough credit: she's a budding New Woman who's tremendously strong and takes care of everyone around her, but will her strength be enough to defeat the undead? The book's terrors are so subtle and so carefully built; I am just hugely impressed with its structure. (And the diary/travelogue elements were well honored in "The Historian.") Tom Waits will always be Renfield to me, though.

Today's film: The 1931 "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." It was on TV somewhere last night and I just got hooked. I've never read this book or seen any of the movies, figuring I knew the basic story so it wouldn't be interesting. Well, wow. Fredric March is fantastic and the directing is so witty. I loved the quick shots of the lab skeleton during the fatal shootout at the end, and the scene when Jekyll is listening to a bird and then a cat eats it.

No comments: