Saturday, February 19, 2005

Last night I saw a commercial where a little girl, obviously reading off a cue card, informed the world that smoking killed her dad, who was her best friend. And then a snappy "act-now-wait-there's-more" man's voice talked about a wondrous and affordable new method for breaking a cigarette habit. From admonishment to enticement in ten seconds. Now that is wondrous.

A couple days ago I saw three cars stop in the middle of the street to form a blockade against a fire truck with its sirens blaring.

That same day I also came across a young man with a Jamaican accent who asked me where he'd get if he kept walking north of Santee. I told him "Nowhere. There's nothing north of here." Which is perfectly true, but he didn't seem satisfied.

My point is no one knows what they're doing. I think that's my point, anyway.

Em, I seem to be quite back to my old schedule. It's about 6:30am and I haven't gone to bed yet. I did make a quesadilla with a crumbled up hard boiled egg in, and hot sauce.

And then I put in a tape.

The RKO logo came up and I thought, "I bet this'll be a Fred and Ginger picture! Please be Fred and Ginger, please be Fred and Ginger, please be Fred and Ginger . . ."

It was Fred and Ginger. Two people who definitely knew what they were doing. The movie was Swing Time, the plot was simultaneously slightly silly, slightly witty, and thoroughly sweet. Fred follows his lucky quarter to a dancing studio, leading to a really great moment where he saves Ginger her job by--what else?--dancing with her. Ginger Rogers looked particularly cute in this movie, with soap suds in her hair or dressed in a translucent cape. When Fred sang he loved her just the way she looks to-night, I agreed with him.

Fred had an amazing solo dance with three shadows of himself projected in the background. His ability was so keen that at first it appeared to be three copies of the same footage--but then slight alterations reveal otherwise. The whole sequence was startlingly good.

The final big dance number is delicate, and lovely. Performed to a song involving Astaire singing about how he won't dance without Rogers, the whole thing travels among just the perfect magnitudes of hints. Oh, it was too sweet. So, yeah, Swing Time's a good movie.

You know, these days I'm noticing what a profound effect great art can have on my entire disposition. Well, I've always been that way, but lately I've been thinking about it. So now I think I'll go read some Spider-Man.

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