Obscene, the number of people who came down tonight to our Korean Movie Night. There was Ray, and Beth, and Christopher, and Erin and Tilly, but then the last two left after I took pictures of someone’s breasts for them. They left us to have the room to ourselves, couches full only with one or two bodies each, and seating for everyone. It was like there was something wrong. (Not the breasts, that sort of request seems normal now). It was more a family gathering than a weekly event of some slightly epic proportion. Comfortable but unexpected. Expecting a battle, there wasn’t even a war.
Sara, Graham, and Nick arrived later, though only Sara got see part of the movie, the bit where father’s just bashed a head in. It was a Korean movie, after all. There had to be some statement of graphic violence that slapped us in our jaded eyes. It’s partially why we keep coming back. The ability to shock is a precious one and something we hold dear. The cinema we find refuses to hold back, details are upfront and basic. Fish-hooks in faces, child autopsies, slaughterhouses based on actual events like soldiers lined up on a particularly militaristic mantelpiece. It’s what we want. Art, truth, and beauty bombs. The shrapnel glitters like blood because it is. Death, there’s a lot of death. We’re learning history and camera angles, cultural references, ambiguities, and the delight that can be found in basic story-telling. We’ve been at this for months now and it’s very rare we watch anything lacking in story. It’s a relief after most modern western films, things like Corpse Bride, which are pretty but meaningless after the nice Hell-is-An-Oingo-Boingo-Jazz-Club bit.
This is where, if I were more awake and aware, I would launch into a miniature tirade essay on the nature of story and how we don’t have enough of it anymore. How our myths have died, eaten mostly by a lack of education and an unwillingness by major studios to believe that an audience does not, in fact, require explosions. I want special effects, I will go find some Peter Greenaway. No one’s made movies like he did. I want explosions, I will make some. In part, that is why I paid for my pyrotech tickets. I want some plot instead. Honest. (In fact, all of you, go see Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. It made me exceedingly glad). However, the time is inching closer to three in the morning, and I am expecting a long day tomorrow. Visits and breakfast and taxidermy rounded off with an evening at the Art Gallery for a political gala. My life sounds better on paper.