Last night I had some decent Sushi in Hillcrest after seeing the movie The Reader. SPOILER ALERT: I found the performances very engaging and the narrative is one that immerses its viewers, yet I now wonder what angle the book took toward the end. The movie would have ended very well when Kate Winslet’s character, Hannah, decided to prop herself up on all the books she has learned to read and in turn hang herself. I often wonder, having dabbled in directing plays and shorter scripts myself, why certain films allow themselves to ride on coincidences. Trust must always go to the reader and the viewer; we do not need to be shown the image or the particle of that which our minds find it exciting to have gathered in the progression of a narrative. This film could have easily been one of the best of the year had it not given in to directorial coincidences. For instance, we can gather how amazing it is that Hannah learns to read, as well as the significance of Chekhov’s short story, but we need not be bombarded with this truth in the prison scene which shows us the story as written on the wall. Sure, there are little things that inadvertently find a connective thread in movies, but this is because the story is strong and does not need the extra pointers. It is fine when an actor finds a little quirk that coincides with some moral or figurative attribute of the the film, but not when the scene is born fully out of such coincidence, as it leads the arc astray mid jut. Just some joggings. More on recent film viewings soon.
Things I have been reading in the last day.
Dave Eggers–What is the What
Daniel J Levitin–This is Your Brain on Music–Somebody left it on the counter, so alas.
More Derrida and Barthes