Friday, November 18, 2005

Reaching back in my memory

I didn't see a movie on the past two weekends, which has me primed for just about anything. Luckily, the new Harry Potter movie opens today, and it's playing in my neighborhood theater. Yippee! I saw each of the other three there, and it's great - as I've said before, our little theater attracts a really good crowd, even when it's all kids. I really enjoy seeing kids' movies with kids, because their reactions, even if they're vocal, are infectious.

(Note: I mean reasonably well-behaved children with attentive parents, not the crazy types I have written about at the big multiplex up the street.)

I never did write about the last movie I saw, "Capote." That was the film where the blind man sat in front of me, by the way. (Nobody guessed, nobody won. The prize was fabulous, but it's all mine.) At first I wasn't feeling it - I couldn't grasp what the movie was about. But I think I wanted it to be about the crime itself (even though not one review, interview, or press piece intimated that it would be.) I never read "In Cold Blood" or saw the movie, so I don't know much about the actual case, and my initial expectation was that "Capote" would explain it to me. It doesn't. But it doesn't have to. After readjusting my view, I realized that the film is about the process of writing the book, and how that affected Capote. Affected? I mean, obsessed, bewildered, captivated, destroyed. Phillip Seymour Hoffman is great in the role; Catherine Keener isn't on screen enough (you know I love her) but it's not her movie. (If they do make a film about Harper Lee and the writing of "To Kill A Mockingbird" - or, as one of Capote's pals calls it, "that bird book" - then it will be Keener's turn. I know, they'd probably hire Renee Zewelleger. Sigh.)

Where was I? Oh, it's a great film for a writer (or really any artist) to see, as it asks some interesting questions about the motivation behind the creative process.

I am going to put "In Cold Blood" (the book) on my Amazon list. We'll see if anyone bites.


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