Sunday!

Okay, so Maribou and I have carved out 4 hours this afternoon to see Arrival (which I looked at last week) and we’re looking forward to it.

Now, as far as I can tell, it’s not exactly a “date movie” per se, but the date movies of people married for a handful of years are different from the date movies of people just beginning to feel each other out.

I mean, mostly, Maribou and I have learned that we are most likely better off finding two movies that we want to see that end at more or less the same time, drive to the theater, she can watch her historical costume drama, I can watch my Quentin Tarantino movie featuring Tom Cruise, Jason Statham, and Mel Gibson and we can meet up after the movie and go get ice cream. “Did you like your movie?” “Yeah! Did you like yours?” “Yeah!”

Best way to do it because, hey, she sees the movie that she most wants to see and I see the movie that I most want to see and then we get ice cream and marinate in the good feelings of having watched a really good flick.

When it comes to seeing a movie together, though, that can be a tightrope. Granted, I’m a bit more picky than she is when it comes to an afternoon’s entertainment… but picky in the wrong direction. As such, for us to see a good date movie together, we have to agree on the stuff in the Venn Diagram where there is overlap. Going by the last few dates, it seems that the Venn Diagram contains stuff like “Interstellar”, “Mad Max: Fury Road”, “Star Wars”, and “Inside Out”. (Holy cow, honey… have we really not seen a movie in the theater this year? I guess it’s easier to just get the Blu-ray and sit on the couch and we’ve still got Person of Interest Season 5 and Babylon 5 Season 4 and…)

Anyway, looking at the overlap, it seems that some sort of speculative sci-fi seems to be the sweet spot when it comes to the best way for us to actually get up, get dressed, and go outside even though it’s our day off.

Which brings me to: what’s the date movie formula that works for you?

(Featured Image is “Edison’s Telephonoscope” by George du Maurier from Punch Almanack for 1879)


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Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to AskJaybird-at-gmail.com

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15 thoughts on “Sunday!

  1. Movies are hard. If we rent one over Apple TV, we have to finish it in 24 hours. We’ve been talking about watching the new Star Trek, but haven’t really been able to allocate a time.

    TV on the other hand is great because we can just pick up where we left off. We watched the 4400 together, Game of Thrones up until my wife couldn’t really stand the Theon torture plotline anymore, and now we’re watching Westworld.

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  2. Been watching The Crown on the nettube this week. Quite enjoyable, being a costume drama that seems pretty well written, which is a change. I recommend it.

    Reading The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter, which is interesting more than good. Which is OK in this case. Not only can you feel how much society has changed in these many years, but what is open for discussion and which viewpoints are OK is rarely so openly displayed. The actual writing is only just OK.

    Next up is something a little lighter, Wodehouse’s No Nudes Is Good Nudes.

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  3. Yeah, and Inside Out ended up being a terrible date movie in that we both hated it – although we both ENJOYED hating it together so there was that.

    We definitely haven’t seen a movie together yet this year.

    I’m still on my comic book, CW, and picture book spree.

    Though I have also been watching the Boondocks season 3.

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      • 90 percent of my answer can probably be explained by rereading my post about what my *own* childhood was like (in which moving every few years and going through the things that were presented as all consuming for Riley was among the *least* of the traumas we faced) and considering what that movie might be like from my perspective. It didn’t help that the happy memories Riley had mostly reminded me of my middle sister’s happy memories (hockey, etc.) But I don’t think any of that stuff is particularly Mindless Diversions friendly. Read it, think about it, and if you still aren’t making the connection feel free to email me and I can rant at you about the movie for as long as you would like (since I actually had to work through why it was so upsetting at the time given that I spent the whole moving weeping and not in the happy cathartic movie weeping way). I’m not especially upset anymore but I understand why I was upset in a great deal of depth.

        But also, less personally, and beyond Jaybird’s complaints:
        1) it totally ripped off the more complex adult tv show herman’s head and while I don’t think it broke any copyright laws, i do think they should’ve at least acknowledged the creative debt. which they haven’t. anywhere.
        2) It infantilizes the protagonist a bit by making her act a lot more like an 8 year old than an 11 year old, in my experience of non-fucked-up families’ eleven-year-olds.
        3) the storyline with the imaginary best friend is either incoherent or a lot darker than the rest of the movie to a point where it’s deeply puzzling to me. it felt like a violation of the viewer/creator compact, not a challenging helpful thing AT ALL. and possibly speaks to some of what’s wrong with the rest of the movie.
        4) which is, it reads to me adult wish fulfillment about how they WISH kids processed trauma and/or adults (the movie makers) telling kids how to process trauma/change instead of supporting them in figuring out their own ways and/or adult wish fulfillment about how they would like the insides of their own heads to work. it’s oversimplified to the point where the good parts of the movie are drowned in the dumb, underinflected ones. (herman’s head was a lot better about this, incidentally. also less kid friendly but I swear watching it as a very young teenager did more to help me get through and out of my family situation than anything else other than feeling responsible for and loving my siblings did)
        5) the fact that therapists and other helping adults love it so much continues to grate on me and seem like part of why we won’t ever actually FIX how we deal with truly traumatized kids, not just upset kids (ie, kids who are struggling and acting out because they are going through serious serious shit like death of a parent, abuse, alcoholism, and other things that are far more fracturing than a move – i’d get more intense here but, again, mindless diversions). How we help kids who are either far more behaviorally broken or far better at hiding what’s going on with them than this protagonist is. Like, we might help individual kids (all kids are different), but systematically this perspective is part of the problem and part of the reason so many people don’t address deep traumas until they are well into adulthood, if ever. So in a way, it feels trivializing.
        6) insofar as moving IS hard on kids (which it certainly is), I think the movie choosing to embrace the move as actually a good thing, downplay an 11 year old’s need for autonomy and deep peer connections, and making everything ok and sunny at the end is implausible. there should have been more acknowledgement of why it was sad, what her actual grief was, that sometimes a good thing requires things that are actually *bad*, not just painful, etc. I wanted the movie to either be less realistic or more realistic. I feel like it hit the sweet spot of denial instead.

        The most important answer really is the first one, reread my post and remind yourself how brain-*breaking* my own childhood was and thus imagine how triggering it was to watch this movie (and once I’m triggered by media I have a deep need to finish watching no matter how bad it gets for me, and since it was in the theater, staying was really my only option… not like a DVD where I could pause it and come back hours later or the next day), and how alienating it was for me personally that people think of childhood in the relatively sheltered and protected ways depicted by this movie, when my own childhood experience (and that, I should add, of many many many other little kids) is so very different. But I’d rather not go further into that with you unless you read / reread my other post first, and I would definitely rather not discuss it further on a Sunday! post. You can email me if you have more questions but it might take me a while to respond.

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        • Wow, Inside Out was less complex than Herman’s Head? I wasn’t sure that was possible… Mind you, I liked HH(*), and I think it could have done with a deeper treatment, something in the vague direction of “Inception”.

          (*) Although I preferred the bottom-of-the-hour follow-on “Flying Blind”, a breathy dialogue-dense rom-com which, taken together with “Madam Secretary”, presents me with the disturbing implication that we’ve been underestimating Tea Leoni all these years due to her poor choice of feature film roles(**)…
          (**) And husbands.

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          • I never saw flying blind (i was in canada so (back then at least) things were on at different times), but I’m totally on board with understimating tea leoni.

            also it’s possible that rather than more complex, what HH had that Inside Out doesn’t is *ambiguity* – it’s definitely less ambiguous than HH…

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            • I see your point. I guess I look back on HH in a lot of ways as a missed opportunity. All too often, IIRC, the writers would just write their way out of a corner by having Lust say something salacious for a cheap laugh, then someone would exit stage right while the audience was laughing, and they’d reset the situation. As “Inside Out” proved, the concept is a solid one and deserves better. Maybe not a gritty reboot like “The Jetsons” should get, but a better treatment.

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              • Ah, see, insofar as I have a thought about that after being distracted by thinking about how cool a gritty reboot of the jetsons would be –

                I liked that there were so many dropped threads and resets. because it felt more like life. or at least like my life at the time.

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                • Heh, I took up the Jetsons torch when I saw a photoshopped poster – probably on Cracked – with William H. Macy as George and the tagline “Only one man can stop this crazy thing”.
                  I get where you’re coming from. I was at a different point in my life in the early 90s, and it was a different life, and I can see how that would make a difference. Would be interesting to go back and view it again instead of relying on 20-year-old memories.
                  Mind you, I’m a coastal liberal, so the possibility of my having empathy for anyone who isn’t both exactly like me and under the same bubble as me is under serious question.

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        • Thanks, . I did read that post when you first published it those most of the details allude me at this point and I’ll confess that I did not at all make that connection when I read your initial comment. I also made the doofus mistake of conflating your (and Jaybird’s) hate for the movie with an objective assessment of its worth. Quickly reading your comment, my mind went to, “They thought it was bad? I wonder why…” as opposed to, “They didn’t enjoy it? I wonder why…” And maybe you *do* think it’s bad, but I shouldn’t have made that conflation. Further, my assumption was that your criticism of the movie would be, “The animation was weak!” or “Plot holes!” Obviously, that was not the case.

          I enjoyed the movie on a number of levels and had a few problems with it… most of which stemmed from my understanding of young children as the target understanding and my knowledge of childhood and adolescent psych/development and how that was represented in the actual film.

          There are many, many lenses through which to watch a movie. Not only are the lenses you seem to have applied here ones I did not see the movie through, I’m not even sure if they are in my arsenal of lenses and it didn’t even occur to me to consider it from that (those?) perspective(s). So, thanks for opening my eyes to that. I appreciate your indulging my query so thoroughly and honestly.

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          • Yeah, I would say it’s impossible to objectively obsess a movie that I was miserable for 99 percent of.

            I’m glad you appreciated my answer. I appreciated knowing – even before you responded to it – that you wouldn’t ask if you didn’t honestly want to know :).

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  4. Okay.

    Just got back from seeing it. It’s good enough to tell everyone “you need to see this movie”.

    However, I was hoping that it was good enough for me to come back and say “you need to cancel your Thanksgiving plans and see this movie” and it wasn’t *THAT* good.

    But it was pretty good. Good enough to see in the theater.

    Full review next Sunday.

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  5. Generally I’m not a movie date guy. Unless by “date” you mean, “established relationship” where we just chill. The ladyfriend wants to “go out” and it’s rarely a movie.

    The movie date I had was with a recent mother. She wanted to see & took me to see Incendies.

    Especially the Bus Scene…. Yeah, that’s a date movie :p.

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