(warning: no spoilers whatsoever)
It was quintessentially established in my previous essay All the Important Bits: Man of Steel
that Rao is essentially incapable of watching films how they are supposed to be watched. This is mostly because of the dual dialogue that is constantly ongoing in her head - there are at least two completely different trains of thought at any one time, and that's if she's feeling subdued. It's the same sort of dual train as makes panic attacks so exasperating/disorienting - one part will be hyperventilating, and the other part going "Look, mate, are you done yet? 'Cos I've got work in, like, ten minutes, and I really need to head off...
". And occasionally there'll be another part going "Ooh, butterfly
Watching films, it gets worse. Or at least, it stays exactly the same as normal, except now there's twice as much to think about. So yes, I can be taking in the symbolism and holding my breath at the action and probably sobbing my heart out, but at the same time I'll also be going... Well, you'll find out about that in a minute.
I watched two films this week, which is about as many as I would normally watch in four months(which is probably good news for most people, given the catastrophe that can occur from it) - Divergent
. The first one was with book club, and the second one was because I saw the advert for it whilst watching the first one and my mother felt guilty. I would have liked to see Transcendence
with one of the people I saw Divergent
with, who I also coincidentally caught the train with to get there(it's not that coincidental. we were going the same place at the same time and neither of us had a lift. really it's about as non-coincidental as it gets) - I have been worrying about what to call her because she is both on dA and, you know, a real person. Real people get referred to as B-en(i mean, only b-en is called b-en, but... oh, you've read these before, you know what i mean) and dA people - because apparently dA people are not real - get referred to by their usernames. So, slightly confused, she shall become... Erin.
Is that acceptable? Note me.
Anyway, this is off-topic. This is probably going to get very off-topic, so let's at least try to set off on a good footing.
It is credit to the makers of Divergent
that I only picked up two things from it. In fact, I very much enjoyed the film - more than I was expecting. It was as good as the first book, which I loved(it was the later ones that let it down) and I had been warned so much to keep my expectations low that I did, which was good because they were then raised by the film itself.
Unfortunately, two things occurred to me and I could not get them out of my head.
First of all, there was Eric's face. No, sshhh. Here
is a picture of Eric's face. Now riddle me this...
How the f*ck
do those piercings stay in!?
I mean... A piercing works because it goes in one end and comes out the other. So where is the back of that piercing? Does it just sort of stay in by luck, or... Maybe it's actually one piercing with the front and the back as the two studs? Or Erin said that maybe it's like a magnet and they... Transplant a magnet under his skin...?
It's bugging me like hell.
And then there's the other thing, that hasn't stopped playing on my mind since Tuesday, when I saw the film. Because the thing about my mind and its dual dialogue is that it doesn't see this as a continuity error or an editing floor - some people might see this and just tut because it's illogical and it obviously just wasn't supposed to be. But my mind believes absolutely what it sees, and tries to logically make sense of it by wondering how on earth it could have happened.
So, Tris is running after the train with her jacket over her arm. She has her jacket over her arm, she's running after a train, she's running, she's running, she's only just holding onto the jacket over one arm.
Then, in the next shot, she's on the train.
With her jacket over her arm.
How the hell does her jacket stay over her arm when she jumped onto the train? Have you seen the Dauntless jumping onto trains? Have you tried? It's not easy with a jacket over your arm!
And that's what one of my inner monologues got from Divergent
. I got other stuff as well, but that's all boring.
And then, today, I went to see Transcendence
. Which is never a good idea for someone like me - Les Miserables
was bad enough.
Fortunately, you can read this without any fear of spoilers, because I don't give away spoilers. This is because my idea of 'important bits' and other people's idea of 'important bits' don't match up - so unless you, in the unlikely event, have a mind that works like mine, you won't lose anything by reading this before seeing the film.
I also feel very cool and important because it turns out we saw the preview, three days before the film actually came out officially.
The opening scene got me immediately. There's a really run-down old garden to an abandoned house, and everything is overgrown and rotten and clearly hasn't been looked after in quite a while. And in the middle of this overgrown, wild garden is a set of beautiful, perfectly straight sunflowers.
Do they know
how hard it is to grow sunflowers? And yet they grow without any management at all? Have they actually ever grown them at all, ever?
Then the guy who's standing next to the sunflowers looking pensive turns up in the 'five years previously' scene, except that there's two of him and one of them is a different person. And I basically spent the whole film getting confused between them - it's like that film with Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon playing opposite roles. They look very similar if you're not paying attention, and it turns out that that film very much relies on them being different people. It was kind of like that with this.
The film started off with quite a few different people, and they all eventually link together in some way, but as I'm not very good with character names I just tended to think of them the whole way through as "Man who might be Captain Jack Sparrow
" and "Woman who looks like woman from Inception
" and "Girl from cake store
". However, in the end it was Cillian Murphy who repeatedly stole the show.
Literally. I saw him in the advert and I spent the first twenty minutes going "Cillian Murphy. Where's Cillian Murphy? They promised me Cillian Murphy was going to be in this
". And then I discovered a very important fact about myself.
I am actually
able to recognise him from an out of focus shot
of the back of his head
And basically every scene that had Cillian Murphy in was better than any other scene. All right, so my thing with Cillian Murphy is not that I find him massively attractive - to be honest, my current idea of gut-churning attraction comes in the form of Olivia Wilde and Lena Headey. But as men go, he's, you know, up there with Eddie Redmayne and David Tennant. Mostly, however, my main cause for preoccupation with him comes from Jonathan Black. I didn't initially have Cillian Murphy in mind for Jonathan Black, however after I found out that he was in Inception
I re-watched it, and at some point my mind made that link between Jonathan Black and Cillian Murphy. I mean, he has the right hair, and in Batman
he wore wire-framed glasses. And those eyes... Icy and silvery and... Psychopathy *o*
So basically in any scene with Cillian Murphy, I wasn't paying attention. That might have caused more problems.
I also learned that Cillian Murphy can jump in space. He was standing behind Inception
woman and Morgan Freeman, who were talking, and he was definitely stood behind them, and then Morgan Freeman got in the car, and Inception
woman waved at him, and oh! Cillian Murphy is also in the car.
Also, I got confused again because of a mixed woman. There was this woman from the cake store, and then the cake store turned out to be quite important, and I thought it was the same woman in the auditorium. Then the camera kept focusing on her on the street, and I was like, "Yes, this woman is important, this woman, this woman, she's the thing, she is just, this woman, she's important
". Then she didn't turn up again. Except there was this other woman, with completely different hair but maybe a similar kind of face if you looked at it in the right light, and she kind of came in without any previous introduction, which was weird. So I'm wondering if maybe they were the same woman
Or maybe I'm overthinking this.
Of course I'm overthinking this. That's the point of me.
The first part of the film was mostly intellectual, which was cool and I got most of the science and maths, and the second half was very actiony. I think they wanted to appeal to both audiences, but I did wince a little bit when the soldiers jumped twenty feet up onto the wall of a building because of "super regenerative powers
" from the computer with no visible change in their state or musculature.
And of course, my dual dialogue usually annoys me when it comes to action scenes because of the whole constant-commentary-of-logic thing. However, there was one moment during an action scene when my entire brain, on all sides, went "F*CK CILLIAN MURPHY DON'T YOU DARE YOU ROBOTIC TW*T-W*NKER
There was a lot more to the film, but it's been like five whole hours and now my head is stuck on Cillian Murphy.
And then, at the very end, I felt victoriously smug - and mostly just really fricking amazed - because it turned out that my way of thinking can actually be useful in films.
Because those sunflowers?
They were important. I noticed them. I noticed that they couldn't have grown.
That was so
important to the film.
I could also mention other stuff, like the ethical debates and the awesome questions it raised and the way it actually reminded me quite a bit of Seeking
because of Cillian Murphy and the whole nature of it and the meaning of the ending, but hey, that's not really funny or exciting for any of us.
Also, I finally gave in and did the Divergent
factions quiz. I got a three-way split between Dauntless, Erudite and Candour. Dauntless and Erudite I can understand - but Candour bothers me.
I lie more than anyone I know.
I lie compulsively. I don't even think about it. It just happens.
So maybe I should be Candour for the changing of the ways/the irony?