Thursday, January 24, 2008

Baker, Baker

I despise being sick. I especially despise being sick when there is no medicine for your illness and you just have to tough it out with liquids and lots of sleep. I'm blaming this disease on the fact that I was crammed in a Greyhound bus for over a total of 30 hours this past weekend--God knows what kind of germs were floating around in that air. But at least it got me to Raleigh and back, yes? I was visiting my best friend from the summer, Melissa, otherwise known as the girl who kept me sane when everything around me was degrading into summer theatre hell (now includes West Side Story!). We spent a lot of time laying around, eating yummy food, and watching lots of movies. Here's the list:

Movies Erin Watched in NC
Bridget Jones' Diary
Pretty in Pink
Pan's Labyrinth
St. Elmo's Fire
Sin City

A review of Cloverfield can be found at the end of this entry, for those interested parties. I just got back from 3 hours at the eye clinic at Boston Medical Center--my fifth visit there since I've moved here. My eyes are all cleared up, the inflammation is down, but my doctor recommends weaning me off the steroid eyedrops over a course of three weeks. Which means no contacts for an additional three weeks. GGRRRAAHH! I'm so, so sick of wearing my broken hobo glasses that are too weak of a prescription and don't sit on my face properly so they distort my distance vision even further. It's now been 2 weeks and 2 days since I ordered my glasses at Costco, so hopefully (pray to God) they'll be in by the end of this week. I wouldn't mind the three weeks without contacts if I had a non-broken, up-to-date pair of glasses to wear instead. All this on top of my atrocious head cold: clearly, it's not the best time, health wise, to be me.

I'm seeing Third by Wendy Wasserstein tomorrow night with Yuval at the Huntington. To make up for all the culture I've been exposing him to through plays, we bought tickets the other night to a Boston Bruins hockey game at the end of February. Hurray rough sports! And thankfully I'm babysitting this Saturday--unless they're all still sick--so that will provide some much needed spending money. Which, of course, I've already spent on such fun things as an accent rug for my room, a small (re: rather wimpy) upright vacuum cleaner, and a box of Powerbar Harvest Bars in Iced Oatmeal Raisin Cookie. All of these being things that I've intended to buy for a while and just now got around to buying. And I still have my Border's gift card to spend! Although maybe I should hold off on buying books until my birthday passes so I don't pull a Megan and buy the present someone was intending for me...

My 23rd birthday is exactly four weeks away! My mom says this means I'll be a full-fledged adult--not just a 22-year old fresh out of school--but I insist that adulthood comes with your 25th birthday and the ability to rent a car free of absurd underage driving fees. Either way, at least it means I get to make another Wish List for my family to shop from. :o)

At this point in the proceedings I would respond to Anton's wonderful meme (as Jeff so candidly requested I do), but I am not at my own computer and thus have no access to my music. So I'll do that in another post when I get home. Instead, I offer you the following:

Cloverfield Review

***Avert your eyes, all who have not yet seen it and wish to see the film unbiased! I'll give you a few hard returns to decide.

I really, really liked it. True, if you have a weak stomach or suffer from severe motion sickness you may want to stay away from this one (especially in an Imax), but the handheld camera works wonderfully well for the story. It's a fabulous monster movie that's not about the monster, much in the same way that M. Night's Signs was not about aliens (and I love that movie, too).

Warning: If you go into this film expecting just another monster-on-the-rampage movie, you will be majorly disappointed. Cloverfield is not about the monster or even about fighting the monster: it's about the people trying to survive the monster. Perfectly imitating life in this era of constant bombardment by YouTube autobiographies, JJ Abrams takes on the story of those forgotten in all the other big-budget monster movies. That is, he focuses on the regular citizens who have no access to any information about the monster, the plan to destroy it, where it came from, or anything. These people are not "in the know", they're just trying to survive. It's the story of those people ultimately destined to be statistics--the people like you and me--and not about the hotshot government agents called in to deal with the problem. There is no revelation or explanation at the end, just as those civilians who die in the attacks get no reason for their deaths. The camera may make those with weaker stomachs sick, but there's a good balance of shaky and still footage. The camera lends to a sense of immediacy and authenticity: you're not just watching a staged story, you're experiencing it right along with the characters. You know as much as they do about what's going on (which is not a lot), and you're in it with them until the end.

People have been criticizing Cloverfield for playing off of 9/11 fear factors, but honestly, isn't a monster attack just as sudden and unexpected and horrifying as a terrorist attack? Actually, I think it's more terrifying because there's not a reason for it: the monster is just doing what it does and has no hidden agenda it's trying to achieve. And the terrorists only wish they could chop off Lady Liberty's head and hurl it into the Manhattan streets! The monster, by the way, is really awesome and looks nothing like Godzilla or any other monster we've seen before. JJ Abrams said he wanted to create an original American monster, and he did. One that sheds babies like hippies shed dandruff.

I'd be interested to hear what other people have to say about this movie!



Nate said...

Cloverfield monster = Sin + Plagas.

The Project said...

Woah, woah, woah. Normal people like you and I? I don't know about you, but should a monster attack anywhere near where I am, I will personally track down Joe Reyes and re-assemble the B-2 apartment Ninja strike team. (the name of which escapes part of why we need Joe up in here).

I can only hope you'll answer the call when it comes.


(loud and impossinly long fire alarm from that night in B-2)

Also, I finally saw the Movie---expect a review soon.