Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah: "Waking Life"

Yeah, it's a little talky.

Of course, you may recall how Richard Linklater got his start. Remember a little movie called "Slacker?" You know, about people just walking around and talking, with the camera following one person to another to another? Sounds like a neat trick, but gets old after a while? Yeah, that's it. Turns out "Waking Life" is another version of that, this time with kooky animation instead of no-name actors. (Although some of the animated folks are plenty no-name themselves.)

You also may remember that "Waking Life" got pretty good reviews when it came out in 2001. That wasn't enough for me to shell out good money for what sounded like a bunch of weirdness, but I figured it was worth a shot on cable. After all, "Dazed and Confused" is solid -- "All right, all right, all right" -- "School of Rock" is good mainstream comedy, and I even confess to liking both "Before Sunrise" and "Before Sunset." Yes, I have had my balls removed. What of it?

Alas, "Waking Life" didn't register with me as the more accessible Linklater fare. Our story follows a kid as he meanders from scene to scene, apparently in a dream state, and sometimes with breaks to watch other people talking at each other. Oh, and there is talking. Lots of talking. Tons of talking. Did I mention the talking?

Amid the different degrees of animation -- some rough around the edges, other eerily resembling normal humans -- we listen to people pontificate on things, life, what-not. But get this, apparently the whole movie was shot and edited into a complete live-action version before the animation. Why? Hey, why not? F*cking Linklater.

Anyway, with the talking ... some of it actually isn't too bad. Yeah, these people are just spouting bullsh*t that sounds important, kind of like my pal John and his friends did during his several years of college. But you know, that's not far removed from Pinto talking about how there could be a whole universe in his fingernail, and that our universe could be in someone else's fingernail. Hey, can I buy some pot from you?

Like I said, all the ruminating and dream sequences get old after a while, but I'll admit the movie is enough of a curiosity that I can't totally regret sitting through it. Some scenes, not so bad. Others, pretty dumb. Do I feel enlightened overall? Sure, but no more than from a fortune cookie. And I get that free with my Kung Pao Chicken.


At 10:38 PM, Blogger Reese said...

Loved "Waking Life," but found "Before Sunrise" to be a little to ... um ... how do you say .... emotionally honest.

Which is another way of saying it was "fucking twaddle."

At 10:05 AM, Blogger Jefferson said...

Yeah, but c'mon ... he got to bang a French chick.

At 12:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You get free fortune cookies w/ your Kung Pao Chicken? Man, my chinese delivery place sucks!

At 12:40 AM, Blogger Reese said...

me like kung pao


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