Wednesday, January 12, 2011
dir: Brian De Palma
I've got a half-sister and a half-brother. My sister is born of another mother and my brother of a different father. Technically, I'm an only child. But basically, I'm not. My brother always lived with us while I was growing up except for the summers that he would spend at his Dad's in New York. He was always a pretty cool guy, a bit nerdy in his early years and a bit douchy while at college, but he was always a really great brother and an all-aound good person. Very funny, very friendly, a little bit dumb. Now he's in a goddamned Amway cult and he gives me things like this bound-together mold of horseshit for my birthday and says embarrassing things out loud like "Law Abiding Citizen should get five out of five stars, easy!" Capitalist brainwashing aside, though, I love the dude and hope that he somehow manages to (probably accidentally) stumble upon the kind of superficial wealth and relaxed state of permanent emotional and mental stagnancy that he seems so desperate to be a part of. My sister, on the other hand, could not possibly be more of a class act, even if she had been hand-designed by some Serpentor-style superhuman embodiment of all classy female DNA throughout history. My high opinion of her may have something to do with the fact that she spent pretty much her entire childhood living with her mysterious mother and I never really had the opportunity as a kid to bond with her. So now every time we get to hang out it's a total treat. She's a pretty badass nurse married to a pretty badass emergency response guy of some sort and they have a super badass daughter who tells everyone that she loves them (and actually means it) and does things like draw pictures of my girlfriend and spell her name with unnecessary H's and stops eating pork products because she "really likes pigs." Both of my semi-siblings are into their own things and that's totally fine with me. Especially because neither one of them is actually just a violent manifestation within my own mind of my own dead siamese twin, you know what i'm saying? Brian De Palma gets a lot of shit for absolutely no goddamned fucking reason by a lot of film critics who seem to circle-jerk hatred all over this poor dude. His films are all good, though. All of them. Even the ones that should have been shitty because they were obviously work-for-hire projects so dude could pay the bills. But everything he's ever touched has been inarguably soaked within his own auteur obsessions: gender roles and sexual struggle, the myriad interpretations of "the truth" and the omnipresent concept of the double. You could think of him as Hitchcock for perverts, sure, and you'd be about 70% correct. But you'd also be short-changing not only the director who created the greatest Faust-inspired rock opera in cinematic history, had the audacity to successfully rip off Sergei* Eisenstein's most well-known sequence** for a goddamned gangbusters genre piece, inspired every rapper in the world to be an even bigger idiot and straight-up showed the entirety of one of his films as its own trailer . You'd also be short-changing yourself. Don't be a dick to you.
* LOL at myself for initially spelling it like "Fergie."
** not sure why this is in Italian. Or if it even is.