To begin, I've been in an odd mood since I woke up. I can't tell if its some sort of underlying feeling of depression, or anxiety, or something else entirely. The building is quiet - my neighbors are mostly gone - L.A. feels a little like a ghost town. It could also be the holidays. Can't put my finger on it. Maybe I'm just still in denial over the whole "Santa's not real" thing. I still don't believe it. Anyway, as long as I don't get depressed over being depressed, I'll be alright. Until then, my best guess is that its just a chemical thing.
Then again, maybe it has something to do with seeing three movies in three days, all a bit of a let down...
Jude Law Marathon
I didn't intend it as such. But I did make a point of it to see three movies on three nights in a row this week. And somehow, Jude Law was in all three.
Monday was Closer. The trailers looked good, but maybe I was just concentrating on Natalie Portman working as a stripper. But she barely shows more in the movie. The whole cast, Julia Roberts, Natalie, Clive Owen, and, of course, Jude Law, was surprisingly strong and interesting, but all the key scenes felt like they were directly lifted from the play on which it was based. The story never left the confines of the tiny world the main characters live in, nor did any of the characters feel real enough that I could identify with choices, let alone their decisions. I'm sure that if I'd seen this as a play with the same cast I'd have loved it, but as a movie it felt two dimensional. That said, Natalie Portman does the splits and talks nasty, so I can't say it doesn't deserve a gander.
Tuesday I took Claire to see Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. The title alone would make a good summary of my week's experiences at the movies. Jim Carrey is over the top hilarious, award material, but the story is never clever enough to feel any more like an imitation of European childrens films. Jude Law, by the way, plays the narrator Lemony Snicket himself.
And just a few short hours ago, I went to see a film I'd been anticipating more than any other: The Aviator. I figured that since I felt let down by Martin Scorsese's last couple films ("Bringing Out the Dead" and "Gangs of New York"), that this could be only as good as, say, "Casino".
The Aviator just felt flat and uninspired. Like the screenwriter had gone through a Howard Hughes biography, ripped out some interesting bits, and decided that sweating over things like story arcs wouldn't be worth the effort. Scorsese also seems to have grown fond of really bad CGI effects, which killed any sense of exhilaration the flying sequences could have had. I did enjoy the sequences in old Hollywood. Coolest part for me was knowing that one key scene took place at the Chinese Theatre, a couple blocks from me now, and another main scene takes place at the Fenwick, CT estate of Katherine Hepburn (played by Cate Blanchette), just a few miles from where I grew up in Old Lyme. I could have cared less that Jude Law made a cameo as Errol Flynn.
Our damn cat Leon ate some Easter grass that came up from storage along with our Christmas wrap. He was acting a little lethargic after Claire and we'd found little green strands with pieces of poop at the ends in the litter pan, so she insisted we take him to the vet right away.
He hated the car ride, and the moment we entered the vet's waiting room he hissed at anything that moved, or even things that stood still. Sleeping in a cage behind a thick glass window were three kittens up for adoption - Leon hissed at them and hid under some chairs.
I don't know what was going through his mind, but Leon was shaking like a leaf. Maybe he'd been watching too much Animal Planet. When he finally was let into the examining room, the vet even commented on how traumatized he was - just before she cranked open his mouth and began digging her finger around his tongue.
I felt proud of my
Then she slipped on a latex glove and decided to do a rectal exam. Just a little one.
Claire was holding down his front just as Leon was being raped. He decided to take a bite out of Claire's left index finger, the finger she'd nearly cut off this time last year, and spent months in therapy to make usable again. Blood was everywhere. The vet seemed more traumatized than the cat, and decided to take Claire to get a bandage. In the meantime, Leon jumped to the floor, walking in circles, bull legged, and hissing at inanimate objects. I picked him up and set him in my lap, hoping to calm him. He meowed something... I think he said, "With friends like her, who needs enemas?"
Then he warmed up my lap with a nice stream of piss.
Alas, when Claire and the vet returned, the vet suggested maybe an x-ray, and then reconsidered and suggested maybe some laxatives could do it... and save the x-ray for another day, if necessary.
He seems fine now, although I don't think its hit him yet that he's no longer a virgin. Claire, in the meantime, has a swollen, throbbing index finger thats been fully punctured by cat teeth. Tomorrow a trip to the human doctor could be in order. I'm sure I'll have nightmares tonight of her peeing on my lap.
Oh, and a couple more thoughts...
Earlier, before the movie, before we took Leon to the professional ass poker, I made a run down to Carl Jr. for lunch. On the way back, Claire called me up to ask what was happening - she'd been hearing sirens and lots of helicopters. I was driving north up La Brea, and looked skyward to see FIVE helicopters hovering near our apartment. This isn't terribly uncommon, live in Los Angeles, and especially living near Hollywood Blvd., but still an interesting visual. I guess the cops had a drive by shooting suspect holed up in an apartment. Disappointing, I was hoping for a car chase.
And, to close this on a positive note, I went to the men's room before the movie tonite and walked into an unlocked stall to see a guy on the toilet... and on his cel phone. He casually nodded to me an apologized. "Sorry, man," he said, as I ducked away. I waited anxiously for another stall to open up, so that I wouldn't have to make eye contact again with the strange man who apologized to me when I walked in on him taking a... well.