So I Just (Re)Watched: Beauty and the Beast

Seventh in a series of disorganized thoughts I am left with immediately after watching something.

I don’t know what it is about the letter “B”, but if you ask me “what are some good ______?”, my mind gravitates towards it.  I certainly like things that start with other letters, but I kind of jump to “B” at a moment’s notice.  It’s a fun, round, plump letter that’s produces a warm, soft, and cozy phoneme.  You might say it’s my favorite letter of the balphabet.  No, that’s stupid.  “Alphabet” derives from the common sequence of Greek letters (alpha, beta, gamma, delta, etc.)  So it would be more appropriate to say it’s my favorite letter of the betagam.

Anyway!  Examples.  “What are some good musicians?”  Beck, Bowie, Byrne, Badly Drawn Boy, Basement Jaxx, Björk.  “Esoteric or idiosyncratic games?”  Bayonetta, Bastion, Braid, Borderlands, Bushido Blade, Breath of Fire.  “Movies you can watch over and over?”  Big Lebowski, Brazil, Barton Fink, Beetlejuice, Back to the Future, Being John Malkovich, Beauty and the Beast.

And so I watched Beauty and the Beast again!  The Disney one with the singing and the animations.

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So I Just Watched: “The Cider House Rules”

Fourth in a series of disorganized thoughts I am left with immediately after watching something.

Was this movie kind of a big deal when it came out or something? Product of its time, I guess. I will feel no great sadness if I never see it again.

First of all, the title… not too long ago, a friend and I were having a discussion about titling things, and how obtuseness and assumed lyricism do not often serve a potential audience’s interest. “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom”. “The Godfather”. “Romeo & Juliet”. “The People vs. Larry Flynt”. These are your utilitarian titles. One can look at them and pretty quickly know what a story is probably going to be about.

On the other end of the spectrum, you have thematic and evocative titles that are novel and intriguing, and wind up having some greater subdermal implication to the story at large. “Cat’s Cradle”. “Gattaca”. “No Country For Old Men”. “There Will Be Blood”. “The Bad Sleep Well”.

Then you have a murky grey area in the middle, where titles are self-consciously trying to be evocative and bridging some sort of thematic/poetic gap, but falling short. “The Constant Gardener”. “Their Eyes Were Watching God”. “Secondhand Lions”. “Million Dollar Baby”. And for me, “The Cider House Rules” is there too. What are these stories about? Who knows? Plus, I can never get through without interpreting it at least once as if a Ninja Turtle is saying it… the cider house rules, dude!

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