Saturday, May 12, 2007

Movies Seen

Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill
Can you feel the love? It's clear that Mark Bittner loves his friends the wild parrots. Perhaps it is his unabashed caring that pulls in his love, the filmmaker. He makes their lives so vivid, narrating for us the characters of the individual birds. He feeds them, talks to them as to old friends. He feels the grief of leaving them, reveals their grief for lost birds. The death of an old grandma bird is as poignant to him, and thus to the viewer, as a human friend sinking from illness to death. The glorious green spots of the flock winging across the sky, what a sight that must be to see in San Francisco.

North Country
The personal is political. In some places, it's still man's world. Women trying to be coal miners in the North Country are repeatedly harassed, threatened, and greated in their locker room by shit smeared cunt grafitti on the walls, semen deposited on their change of clothes. I grew up with a confidence that it was a world of equal opportunity, but this happened in 1984. The case was finally settled in 1998. This wasn't just a Lifetime movie made for the big screen. This was a hefty film in the ranks of Silkwood and Norma Rae. It took one woman. One woman willing to endure the smear campaign, a stalker (not covered in the movie but mentioned in the dvd extras), the possibility that she would be branded in her company town for good as a hater of men, an outcast. She brought us the first class action for sexual harassment, established a precedent that really ought to have happened long before.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints
Based on true events from the youth of writer/director Dito Montielo. Coming of age in Queens. This fit right in after watching 3 episodes of Rescue Me. I'm fascinated by these unabashed portrayals of NY men and the gritty violent edge they must live with, or so the movie and shows suggest.

Trigun
Vash the Stampede is sort of a Zorro in a world of Batman bad guys in an outerspace spaghetti western anime. Vash the Stampede keeps getting blamed for the violence of others. He acts the idiot, but dodges bullets and saves the true innocents. Two female insurance agents follow him in an attempt to stop the chaos and costly insurance payouts. They take several episodes to believe the blond goofball is the legendary outlaw. A black cat crosses the screen in every episode.

20/20 Transgender Children
Wonderfully sensitive account from mainstream TV about children who know from before they can talk that they were "born in the wrong body." These kids were featured because they have accepting and loving parents....think of how many must be living whose parents see such children as wrong, defiled.

Bill Moyers Journal Buying the War
If you did not see this, follow that link and watch it online. The Iraq war was sold to America through propaganda. Those of us in the peace movement could see this, but our voices were stifled or spun. Nice thing about this, they can't spin Bill Moyers.

Trigun
I saw this come through the library and I thought, hmm, an adult swim anime. i found Cowboy Bebop via adult swim. this looks like similar scifi, i'll give it a try. Before Bebop (and Spirited Away) I didn't like anime. Cowboys in space, great jazzy bluesy music, creative worlds and space ships..anime allowed for flexibility in aliens and their ships. While not quite as good as Bebop, Trigun is also satisfying as a cowboys in space anime. (Another Western in space that I love...not anime...Firefly.) The main character has a bit of Zorro in him, starts out acting fey and goofy, the insurance girls following him don't believe at first that he could possibly be Vash the Stampede. Not the guy that leaves a wake of destruction. Somehow he's developed this reputation while he refuses to kill others, even bad guys. Somehow he persistently emerges unscathed. Who is this superhuman? Check it out and see.

Thank You For Smoking
A tobacco lobbyists meets regularly with an alcohol lobbyist and a firearms lobbyist. They call themselves Merchants of Death. The MoD squad. The twisted logic of spin rules their world, and the tobacco lobbyist dad finds acceptance from his kid by teaching him the ways of spin. Somebody needs to do a kick in the pants satire like this about the Bush cabal. I suppose unfortunately nobody can touch that.

1 comment:

Adrienne Parker said...

Thanks for the movie list. My husband and I are big film watchers. The alternative movie theatre is just a hop, skip, and jump out our from door. We've seen thanks for not...and a guide to...enjoyed both.