Saturday, May 13, 2006

Life to the Fullest

I don't know why, but it seems the older I get, the more fearful I am of the world. I'll be 26 in a few short weeks and I know life sucks and can only get worse. "Life sucks" is so banally vague. But doesn't it? They say youth is wasted on the young, I say no. Youth has its place in your cycle of existence. Youth is recklessness and ignorance combined, and you can't possibly stay reckless and ignorant for life. Because if you do, then what does that make you? An idiot.

Because I am no longer ignorant, and was never quite reckless, then I am no longer young. I am old. Being old means seeing and realizing so many things despicable are out there. Being old means losing faith in others and in yourself. Being old doesn't quite sink in until you realize you're going to have to take care of your only living parent very soon. Your world flips on its head because in a few short years your mother, that being who has cared for you, sheltered you, put band aids on your wounds, will be your dependent soon. Its a scary, daunting thought.

They say live life to the fullest. I say, for us mere mortals, life can only be lived half-full. Because when you've lived life to the fullest, you can die. In the meanwhile, I have 40 more odd years to live each day as it drags on, filled with the banal and the mundane.

Monday, May 01, 2006

The Piano Teacher (La Pianiste)

Watching this film is not a bit like willingly inserting a sliver of wood under your fingernail then sitting back and stoically wait 'til it bleeds, hope that it bleeds. And when it does, willing the blood to seep out from under your nails and then marvel at the redness. Proof that you're human, proof that you're...

Oh wait, here's a better analogy. Watching this film is not a bit like discovering an injured bird on your window sill. It is evidently suffering and you are torn between saving it and hastening its demise. You feel sorry for it because it is broken and yet you wonder if it won't do you and the bird better if you would just leave it alone to die. It is, after all, just an animal. And you are human. Healing it or killing it. Which is more humane?

Oh crap. No, no, no. Watching this film is not a bit like wishing you knew more about Freud and psychosexual disorders. If there are such things. Wishing you had taken some classes in pyschology to better situate yourself in the mind of the protagonist and the filmmaker. What the fuck is this movie saying? A beautfiul, middle-aged piano teacher whose sexual perversions simmer underneath her icy-cool demeanor. Her perversions are symptoms of a seriously unhappy life.

You also wonder what it means to know who the fuck is Schubert and wish you knew more about German composers and classical music and sacrificing your leisure for greatness.

Fuck. I'm running out of analogies. Just watch it.

This is a deliriously fascinating film about brokenness and being human. With the coolness and precision of a surgeon, director Michael Haneke slices open your chest and dares you look inside. A looong mindfuck with no proper ending. Absolutely brilliant.