The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Something to Read #2

My friend Saul Symonds has posted two excellent new pieces of criticism on his "Light Sleeper" film review site that I think visitors to this blog, particularly those oriented toward cinephilia, might like to give a read; hence this recommendation.

First up (and quite timely, sad to say) is a review of Wayne Ewing's "Breakfast With Hunter" (2003), a documentary on the now-late journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Saul informs me that he'd just completed the review . . . while nursing a hangover (now there's dedication!) . . . when he got the news of Thompson's suicide. Another instance where none is needed that serendipity can play a part even in a racket like film criticism.

Second . . . and this piece I give an only slightly more enthusiastic recommendation . . . is "The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement; or a Note on Abberant Sexual Fetishism in the Chick Flicks of Garry Marshall". This is one of the best pieces of Saul's that I've read to date; an inquiry both historically sound and irreverent (two conditions which have been segregated out of so-called serious film writing over time) into the almost involuntary ways twisted sexual matters poke through the surface of the most outwardly unlikely works.

While you're on his site, take a look at some of his other reviews. You won't be wasting your time, I can avow.


swac said...

Hmmm...I see Saul avoids discussing Exit to Eden. I supposed in an essay about fetishism that would be like pointing a Winchester into a barrel marked "herring".

Tom Sutpen said...

Turns out, as I suspected, that Saul didn't want to point to above the radar examples of fetishism in Garry Marshall's work; just those that peek out at us where we least expect it.

You know, Saul actually watched (and rewatched) a number of Garry Marshall films to prepare for that article. I've heard of getting your hands dirty, but that's beyond the call of duty, y'ask me.