Anna Gregoline | August 5, 2004
In general, do you think movies and/or television provide a realistic picture of life in America?

Erik Bates | August 5, 2004
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Melissa Erin | August 5, 2004
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Scott Hardie | August 6, 2004
Thanks Erik. Great movie. :-)

Point of view has become so commonplace in films -- there's a single three-dimensional protagonist, and all of the other characters exist in the film only as the protagonist sees them -- that an omniscient narrative in something like the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy seems quaint and old-fashioned. For that reason, we rarely get a realistic glimpse of America; we're lucky to get America as one character sees it.

I last mentioned Spike Lee's 25th Hour only a month ago, but the recommendation bears repeating; it's a fine film about the meaning of "land of the free, home of the brave" after something like 9/11 shakes us to our core. It's not a realistic portrait of America, but it's a realistic portrait of the essence of America in this unique period in our history.

Anna Gregoline | August 6, 2004
I don't think I'll see it, though. I'm just not a Spike Lee fan. I remember watching something with you Scott and just not feeling it.

John Viola | August 6, 2004
I like the social commentary of movies such as 'American Beauty' and 'Fight Club'

As far as most television shows and movies - no, I don't think they provide a realistic picture of life in general. They are typically an idealized version, or at the very least an exciting version which keeps us entertained. Even the reality shows are dramatized for our viewing pleasure. How many of us would really watch some boring group of people doing a normal, uneventful routine of work and household chores day in and day out?

Melissa Erin | August 6, 2004
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Anna Gregoline | August 6, 2004
Yeah, you didn't pick up on that?

Melissa Erin | August 6, 2004
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John Viola | August 6, 2004
Well, at least the movie fostered violent tendencies in you - so I guess it wasn't a complete failure.

:-o

Melissa Erin | August 7, 2004
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Scott Hardie | August 7, 2004
Anna: Not to keep harping on the subject, but "25th Hour" is the most mainstream and accessible of Lee's films; it is the least like him to have created. Like many directors, he was tamed by such a towering subject. I still think you would enjoy and appreciate it. Besides, it stars Edward Norton; is he not still yummy? =)

Anna Gregoline | August 7, 2004
Melissa is one of the most violent people I know - if in thought if not in deed.

Eh, I might try it, Scott, but not likely. Not unless Jesse is interested enough to get it from Netflix.

John Viola | August 7, 2004
Melissa - LOL I was joking with you. The commentary wasn't about how to get more violence in your daily life.

It was more about the main characters drab, dull, meaningless existence. The scene where he is walking through his apartment and you see prices and tags over his furniture gives the impression he is walking through a catalog - his life has devolved into a consumeristic venture of accumulating 'things', a mechanical existence devoid of meaningful human interaction and most of all - passion and life. Enter his alter ego. Strong, passionate, interesting. The club he starts is brutal and can perhaps be looked at as 'simple male aggression and testosterone'. But I believe it is an excellent choice to bring the main character back to life in the most basic, fundamental way. It is the polar opposite of what he has become. He lives as a mechanized drone, and his alter ego does a 180 and unleashes his raw animalistic nature.

Although, if watching it makes you wish you were instead poking yourself with rusty nails (rusty dull nails would have an even nastier effect), then perhaps a movie like 'The Notebook' may be more in order? After all, we all have our own interests and if you don't like the movie then you don't like the movie. Fair enough.

Melissa Erin | August 7, 2004
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Anna Gregoline | August 9, 2004
Geez, that was harsh suggesting "The Notebook."

John Viola | August 9, 2004
Well, once rusty-nail-impailment is brought into a discussion anything is fair game... :-p

Anna Gregoline | August 9, 2004
Ha, you don't know Melissa! Rusty nails are par for the course.

Melissa Erin | August 9, 2004
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Erik Bates | August 10, 2004
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Scott Hardie | August 10, 2004
Growing up, I escaped it by going along with my parents to all the parent-teacher conferences, acting like it was normal even though I knew better. The teachers wouldn't say anything bad about me with me sitting right there watching them. It got me out of a lot of trouble. ;-)

Anna Gregoline | August 10, 2004
Wow, Scott, what cowardly teachers.

Melissa Erin | August 10, 2004
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John Viola | August 11, 2004
Hmm. I don't know how many of you have seen Scott in person, but he doesn't cut the image of a 'lil baby. I bet if he wanted to he could be intimidating.

'That's right Ms. Teacher, keep talking.'
*Evil Grin*

Melissa Erin | August 11, 2004
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Erik Bates | August 12, 2004
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