Posted on December 18th, 2009
It's a blue bleu blu bloo kind of day.
Blue is my favorite color. I don't find it depressing like some people claim, but I do find it calming. Blue skies, blue water, and blue ice all make me happy. I am disappointed that there's not more blue foods to eat.
Yesterday I brought up Jean-Pierre Jeunet after seeing his Chanel No. 5 commercial. This resulted in all kinds of discussion about French cinema and eventually came 'round to another brilliant French writer/director... Luc Besson. His body of work is such genius that it is difficult for me to decide on a favorite. The Fifth Element? Genius! Leon? Genius! Nikita? Genius! It goes on and on. But it's one of his earliest works that I love most... Le Grand Bleu. Now, here in the USA, the film was retitled The Big Blue and butchered to the point of incomprehension. First they lost the achingly beautiful score by Eric Sera. Then they chopped it to pieces. Then they slapped on a stupid happy ending on it that destroyed the entire point of the film. HOWEVER, if you ignore the shitty US version, the original film is... as one would expect... genius. On the surface, it's a film about free-diving competition. Going deeper, the film is so much more. And while I'm willing to accept that it's not going to be everybody's cup of tea... I think humans would have a much better understanding of living if it was.
Assuming you can ignore the misstep in casting Rosanna Arquette as the love interest.
What surprises me... but not really... is reading all the reviews on NetFlix from the many people who liked the butchered American crap, but hated the restored "Director's Cut" with a passion usually reserved for serial killers (Dexter not withstanding). Apparently, if a story doesn't move at a break-neck pace and gets all tied up with a happy ending, Americans just don't "get" it. Not that this is a bad thing... it just speaks volumes as to the cultural differences that make this world such a fascinating place.
Remember the good ol' days when you bought a fucking DVD. You took it back to your fucking house. Then you put it in the fucking DVD player. Then you pressed the fucking "play" button. THEN YOU WATCHED THE FUCKING MOVIE? Now-a-days? Not so much. Now there's Blu-Ray. Sure it has amazing picture and fantastic sound... but you pay a price for it. You pay with time.
This morning my copy of Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds arrived on Blu-Ray, and I spent my entire day dying to run home and watch it. Finally, 5:00 arrived and I rush home to find... that it wouldn't play. Thanks to the idiotic copy protection bullshit that plagues the Blu-Ray format, I had to upgrade my P.O.S. player to accommodate whatever new "protection" crap Macrovision has dreamed up. It took 50 minutes. So I wait. Then, because the player has to boot up like a computer to decode all the copy protection shit, I wait. Then, because everything takes forever with a Blu-Ray player, I press the button to open the drawer, and I wait. Then I put in the disc, and I wait. Then I press the "play" button, and I wait. Then you have to wait for the disc to load... the menus to load... the button presses to be acknowledged... it's waiting on top of waiting on top of waiting to see if the disc will even play. It sucks. Hard.
What good is the superior picture and sound if you can't play the disc? How much of a wait is worth it? I struggle with these questions every time I go to play a Blu-Ray disc. Bigger, more expensive, slower... is progress?
Because nothing blue could be complete without Bloo!