“Mason’s gone to Zanzibar,
Underneath his panama,
Out in the boundary.
Fading in the evening sun,
Out on the boundary.
There’s no surprise.
There’s peace in his eyes,
On the Boundary….”
The Duckworth Lewis Method
Mason On The Boundry
I decided to just throw caution to the wind today and just make some serious comfort food. I suppose I don’t need an excuse to do that. I do it enough,…but for some reason, I just decided to make some good old-fashioned Italian food.
There’s no real recipe for this and, even if there was, I’m not sure I have the fortitude to write it out. The pictures are self-explanatory. I will lay them out here in case anyone wants to go for broke and make it themselves. It’s really just sweet peppers and mild italian sausage….make a pot of spaghetti, crack a jar of sauce and it’s done. I made a gallery on top for close-ups of all the pics….
So, I watched two Wes Anderson films today. The Life Aquatic and The Darjeeling Express. Can’t say I loved either one of them but they weren’t the worst movies I’d ever seen. Owen Wilson does a pretty good job in all of his flicks. I just think I didn’t find the characters really that likable or something. I just couldn’t connect with them or something. Maybe that’s a flaw in my own character or something.
Both pictures in this double feature were actually pretty visually stunning. (That’s me trying to sound like a bonafide film critic. You use terms like “visually stunning.”) Anderson a big fan of the cutaway set, isn’t he? I really liked that aspect of it. The fact that there was that interplay was reminiscent of Hitchcock’s, “Rope”. To not cut the film but to cut the set instead. I liked that part of it. That really is thinking outside of the box, so to speak.
The story lines of both films left a little to be desired however. I’m afraid that I’m either really pretty dumb or, worst yet, not very deep. Both films had Anjelica Houston in them and in both films she kinda creeped me out. I think that was because she was living with Jack Nicholson when Roman Polanski did his dirty deed with the 13 year-old back in ’74. That happened in Jack and Anjelica’s house ya know. Maybe that’s why she creeped me out. I don’t know. (I believe I read somewhere that she was even home when it happened. I could be wrong in that though.)
Jack doesn’t creep me out when I see him. I can watch Jack all day and be amused. It’s just something about Anjelica Houston that bothers me. She’s kinda cold and aloof, ain’t she? I gotta wonder if that’s her true character.
In any event, I just felt like the story lines petered out. Like there was some serious potential for both of them but they never quite got there. Out of the two, I would have to say I actually laughed more at The Life Aquatic,…but I really like the Darjeeling Limited better. (Can’t really say that I liked the part about the guy being in India when his wife was expecting however…that was kinda cold.)
Bill Murray was in both flicks. What accounted for his presence in The Darjeeling Limited is anybody’s guess of course. There was no point in that character…unless he was supposed to be this symbol of what happens when you miss a train in life. Other than that, nothing accounted for his presence. Anybody could have played that part. They coulda got Ron Howard’s little brother Clint to play that. It was that strong of a role.
As far as The Life Aquatic, there’s this rule of thumb that you don’t kill the hero until the end,…if he has to die. If you break that rule, you need to do it right. Hitchcock’s Psycho was a perfect example of it being done right. He kills off Marion Crane in the middle, but he seamlessly replaced her with Norman….who, in spite of being a psycho, became somewhat the helpless hero.
I think the strongest features of both movies was the visuals. I think I could watch them both again for that alone. I also have to say that, were I to watch them again, I might actually do so with headphones on with The Duckworth Lewis Method playing. The depth of The Darjeeling Limited was a bit over my head. I mean, does anyone really have that much time to analyze their life?
I know I don’t. I stopped doing that when I hit 24. I’ve found that too much introspection is not really that great for me. It might be for others, but not me, babe.
He did make good use of the panning cameras in both flicks though. I’ll give him that. The fluid slide to the right and left (without dialogue) can really capture a scene. That’s when the actors really have to have their game on. It’s that timing thing. Since it was so fluid, I have to really wonder if it was either easy or difficult. You can’t really tell. Of course, it looks easy,…I guess that’s the point. I suppose that’s all that really matters when it comes to the final product.
Anderson also uses colors to tell his stories. I thought that was pretty cool. Just inserting a predominate color into the whole movie and keeping it there. In the Darjeeling Limited, it was the color blue. In the Life Aquatic, it was yellow and red. (I think. Watching them back to back, I might be a bit confused about that.)
You almost have to watch both of them back to back to get the feel for him as a film maker actually. Since these were probably the only two movies of his that I’ve ever watched, that might have to be a given. Maybe the continuity of his method might’ve escaped me if I watched both of them three months apart. I don’t really have that great of a memory anymore.
Bill Murray always seems likable in anything that he does. I think it’s because of that true irish face that he has. Yet, he wasn’t that likable in The Life Aquatic. It might be because he will always be Carl Spackler to me. (I know, I know. 1980 was a long time ago and in a galaxy far, far away. Let the past go, Dan.)
I did really like the scene where he took on all the pirates himself. That was actually a pretty good scene…and the fact that the pirates were all dressed like street thugs. That made me laugh.
Ya know,…I really hate to say this at this point, but they were actually pretty good movies in hindsight. They wouldn’t rank up there with my favorites, but they were pretty good. When the guy popped Jeff Goldblum, I thought that was the end of him. The next scene has him running, covered in blood, but experiencing no apparent pain. That was pretty funny actually.
The pepper spray scene in The Darjeeling Limited also made me chuckle quite a bit. And when the one brother chucked that belt into Owens’ face. It was funny, but it made me wince for a second. That was actually something me OR my brother would actually do….
I just had a hard time with the guy being in India when his wife was about to deliver. That kinda stuff rattles around the back of my brain during the entire course of the movie. To me, it wasn’t the tension between the brothers and the mother. It was the fact that he’s off in India trying to “find himself” while she’s at home about to drop a kid. In that, I probably missed the take home of that flick. It would have done nothing to the storyline if they removed that one aspect of the story and kept everything else in tact.