I have decided to share more personal posts on here. They will all be titled with “Personal Post” so that y’all will be able to sort through what is fiction and what is rambling. I’m doing this to afford you, and myself, some perspective into my life.
I watched Barton Fink on Saturday and came to the conclusion that the Coen Brothers are the best writers in movies today. The dialogue is superb, the story is compelling, and the characters are dimensional when they need to be.
It made me think about writing. It made me think about why I do it. I do it to entertain myself. I do it to entertain you as well. I do it to exorcise ideas from my head. I do it because it beats the Hell out of playing video games and watching television. I do it because it makes me feel like God for a little while.
Sunday was Valentine’s Day. I typically abhor Valentine’s Day. I can be bitter about all the Valentine’s Days that I didn’t have Sarah in my life for. I know I should just let all that baggage go, but sometimes carrying that baggage seems like a good time. It allows me to be contrary, which is a past-time of mine that likely vexes some folks.
This year, I embraced Valentine’s Day, purchasing some flowers for my wife, taking her to a movie, and making dinner.
The Wolfman was the movie we went to see. Usually, I steer clear of werewolf movies. They tend to suck. Watch Cursed and try to disagree with me. I don’t mean to imply that there aren’t any good werewolf movies, but they are very few and far between.
The Wolfman sucked me in by starring Benicio del Toro and by seeming visually appealing. Benicio did a fabulous job as Larry Talbot; he looked miserable and put upon. He is a cursed man and he looks at potential saviors with the knowledge that they are also potential victims of his inner beast.
The visuals are, indeed, striking. Lots of great shots that evoke a place in time artfully. It is stylish, but it isn’t forced. Tim Burton’s new Alice in Wonderland looks like it has enough forced style to choke a horse with. I’m going on a tangent:
I like Tim Burton. He has a great sense of visual style. However, he’s playing a guitar with one string. With each movie that passes, he seems to just pull on that string harder and harder in an attempt to find something new. The version of Charlie that he did looked cheesy and was terrible. Alice looks like it could reach the same heights of stylish cheese. Will this make it a bad movie? Maybe. Will his fans like it? Definately. Moving on.
There are spoilers ahead.
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The Wolfman falls apart when we realize that we just don’t care about Larry. I’m sure he’s a likable fellow when he isn’t doomed, but he is just SO doomed that there is no sense of loss. Larry doesn’t have anything to lose, really. His life all ready seems pretty bad, and his fixation on the past just makes it worse. And seeing as the movie never really makes us feel like Larry COULD come out on top, we aren’t surprised when he’s doomed.
We aren’t surprised when the story becomes Oedipus Werewolf
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I found myself rewriting the movie.
We focus on Larry in the Asylum. He believes he is a werewolf, but there is no proof. He doesn’t see the moon. He is tortured. We see his past through the same kind of stylish flashbacks that the movie presently has. His doctor is a main character. He pushes Larry, encouraging him away from his belief that he is a werewolf.
Larry’s father visits, and we get a sense of their bad relationship. Larry’s Pa is moved by his brother’s death. He wants Larry better, because a shitty son is better than none.
Larry and his doctor concoct the moon rise scene presently in the movie. Tongue out of cheek, it is the first time we see the Wolfman in action and it is terrifying. He escapes, and he returns home. He has power now, and he needs to wait until the next moon.
From there, we develop an idea of the life Larry could have if he were able to cure himself. He grows a backbone, knowing about his inner power. His love interest develops, and, long story short, Larry is left with a choice: he can keep his curse and get his revenge or he can turn back to himself and face the consequences.
Something like that. Maybe I’ll write that. A kickass werewolf story…
Well, with that, it is getting late. I must be away.