Okay, that isn't fair, to seem to dismiss a film for a single anachronism. I'm not changing my rating, but I do have actual reasons for rating it thus.
First of all, some good things. The performances, as most of you know or have heard, are really quite good. Firth delivers a comprehensive stammer that had me sinking into the sofa with second-hand embarrassment. I was sympathetic to his character and identified easily with his hang-ups and fears, not because I harbor any similar, but because the part was well-written and human. Geoffrey Rush as the speech therapist has more to work with in terms of character and expression, and though he performs very well, it's almost because of this that Firth runs away with the show: the scope of Bertie's character exceeds the range of emotions appropriate for or befitting his station, and this battle between Bertie the man and King George the figure-head is visible through the subtly and restraint of Firth's portrayal.
Now, actually in terms of convenience for me, it would be better if Paul kept the business and slaved away without me, and then when I felt like it I could return and pick up where I left off. That's asking a bit much, really, and it's not even what I really want. Maui has been great, don't get me wrong, but three years of tropical oasis has about done me for down time, especially as that down time has consisted of a minimum wage job with no advancing prospects that doesn't even pay all of the time. That's not technically a complaint because I at least have some form of income, and that sort of job is about all that's available around here. Anyway I used to think I was at least a little bit smart but the last three years have not been advancing that hypothesis in any way.
This is an outrigger at the cove across from where I work. In the far distance you can see Molokini, a popular snorkeling spot to which, being poor, I have never been. Not the form in the middle distance. That's just a rock. Behind Molokini is the island Kaho'olawe, which is good for nothing, as far as I can tell. Rumor has it it is used to conceal and conduct top secret military experiments, but the person who told me that was a ways off his nut, so who knows. He also said they were conducting top secret military experiments in the cavernous bowels of Mt. Haleakala. I don't know, but that seems like an awful lot of top secret ops for just a few square miles. This is also the guy who revealed his murder method of drowning the bludgeoned victim in a bucket of salt water before tossing them in the Pacific. As far as I know that has not happened.
This is the same spot, from a different angle, on a different day. These things are here all the time, but they were only twice worth taking pictures of. I have a digital camera which, on a sunny day, is actually worse than my starter camera back when I was nine. You all remember what film was, yeah? Well, on that camera I had to look through the viewfinder to line up my shot, and hope it came out alright. Sometimes entire roles at a time were undevelopable, which was a bummer. My current camera doesn't have that problem. In fact, no pictures are ever developed, but they do make it onto this blog now and again. Actually that isn't true because Long's Drugs has been sending me "a courtesy call" since February, reminding me to pick up a couple of head shots that I don't want, since I needed them that day within one minute of the order, and thought they could just print them off like most people can generally do in their homes. Well, they couldn't and after that day the pictures were no longer relevant so I'm waiting to see who caves first, them or me. It's April now and they just called this morning, so it looks like they're really after their twenty cents. It's just a recording, so I don't feel bad hanging up on them repeatedly.
Well, this wouldn't be a problem if I were rich because A) I could buy a camera with digital output and a viewfinder, and B) I could afford a proper computer and photo-editing software so that I could fix my crappy shots into works of magnificence. That's just going to have to wait until...That's just going to have to wait.
In other news, only a small tsunami hit Kihei, and it smells a bit like pond water, but there has otherwise been little to no damage.
Holy Hell, I am so glad to be back on Maui you would not even believe it. First of all...i washed my clothes. Let me tell you a little something about my parents place in NJ, and it isn't pretty. For some reason, the road the house is situated on is considered private, which means solely that the county won't plow it or maintain it in any way. However, for various reasons the county still calls the shots on whether you can dig a well on your property. Their answer is no. So the community well is at the top of the street, and is maintained by the neighborhood water committee. What is that, you ask? I'm pretty sure no one has any idea. Years ago, the well just...went off, and now the iron content is so high it's actually visible. I mean, that's what I'm hoping it is, but it's obviously no very pressing matter as It's been like that for years; perhaps as few as five, perhaps as many as ten, I can't recall. In any case it means clothes are visibly dirtier after being washed.
Alright, that's an unfair exaggeration. The whites are off-white, that's all. But still. I thought long ago that the neighborhood should have petitioned to join the public road system. Then the county would have to pave the street, which is eroded daily by runoff from the mountain, as well as the numerous springs which have surfaced in people's driveways. As they are not permitted to sink any wells, this water simply trickles into the road, contributing to the great runoff ravine, which in winter freezes over to glacial proportions. My parents cars were sliding out of the driveway, I mean it.
Due to my inability to lie for my own good, my parents are now aware and concerned that I am throwing away my youth on an older man, or just even throwing away my youth in general. My advice to those like me, who lack the knack for falsehoods, is to stay well away from your family until you have something to show for yourself, preferably a Nobel Prize. Otherwise all those well meant questions about what you've been up to all this time start to take on the color of judgement, and when you try to distract them with copious liquor, well, then they just think you're a drunk.
Anyway, once I got back to dear old Maui, my apartment was broken into and robbed, which makes three times on this delightful island that I have been extensively ripped off, like, more than just the grocery store charging five bucks for a quart of milk. In Philadelphia I took it for granted that all first story windows were barred. Getting mugged was a fact of life, so try not to keep anything valuable on you. Here, you start to think everything's all island style with umbrellas on it. And it is, if you've got nothing to lose. Now that the television is gone, it's just one less thing I have to worry about being stolen.
I'm saving up for an around-the-world-in-eighty-days this summer. But before I can save, it means I have to get an actual job! Drat.
Now why does anything to do with the airport cause such phenomenal anxiety? I have no problem flying, I can sit on a plane almost indefinitely, but try getting me to book a flight? Panic. Get me to the actual airport? uuurrrrrr, it doesn't matter how many times I do it. I have an ulcer just from today.
I made up for seeing one good movie by watching Sex and the City 2, which just about counterbalances every good film ever made with its sheer suckitude. I did not pick this movie out, before you blame me for wasting a dollar on what promised beyond doubt to be one of the worst films ever produced. However, unlike most bad films, which I simply turn off, I watched the entire thing, and I was trying to figure out why. As I watched it I realized that the problem was that there was an actual story, and it wasn't entirely bad. Mindblowingly original, no. But there was a driving conflict, much as the film struggled to stifle it under fifteen tons of OMG-Girls-Just-Wanna-Have-Fun!
Carrie McSuperFab at some point in the history of Sex and the City married the man of her dreams, Rich-o McAlsoFab, but tragically, after two years of married life, he no longer wants to accompany her to fabulous parties and glitzy events. He just wants to stay at home and watch TV. And you know what, I agree that that sucks. So I was glad when Carrie popped a verbal cap in his ass and forced him to attend to his half of the relationship. I think it's a perfectly decent premise for a movie. Unfortunately, after that brief nod to plot development, the rest of the film degenerated into someone's bedtime fantasy : "Oh my god, wouldn't that be so great if I got to wear this awesome dress, and then go to a red carpet event, and then, oh, I know, I would get invited to be the empress of Abu Dhabi for a week, and have sexy hunks wait on me hand and foot, and wear all these SUPERFAB outfits! Let me think about what I would wear..." Meanwhile, I'm sitting on the couch waiting for the story to resume, and in the meantime wondering in what reality it would be sensible to wear a one-sleeved, off the shoulder rayon pantsuit to go camel riding in the goddamn desert. For one thing, hello, tan lines? I thought the Fab Force Four woud at least care about that. And this is after McSuperFab complains that she's not dressed for camel riding.
In fact, the magnitude of suck defies recapitulation. I've actually pissed myself off thinking about this movie. I mean, I can find a dollar in the street, but those two hours are GONE FOREVER. And I know I've already posted a rant about the depiction of homosexuals in the media, but while other minority representation seems to have been shelved for the time being, people are so forward about homosexual representation that it's actually backwards. I mean come on. "Her gay best friend is marrying my gay best friend!" like they belong in the specific subset "Gay" of the category "Friend", wherein they might achieve "best" status, but are excluded from ever being just plain "friend." Would anyone ever proudly announce "My black best friend is marrying her black best friend!" or "My Chinese friend is marrying her Chinese friend!" or "Her dwarf is marrying my dwarf! Isn't that SUPERFABULOUS??" It's fucking ridiculous. I'm sorry, I'll stop now. I have a preoccupation with the machinations of the media, and it runs away with me sometimes.
For some good news, I'm coming to NJ for Christmas. My sweaters here were stolen, so please allow me to borrow some winter clothes when I come to visit! I'm serious. I don't think I even own any shoes that aren't flip flops right now.