So, perusing, from a safe distance, the American political brouhaha taking place. That a president can and should seek foreign ‘help’ in going after political rivals when seeking re-election. That is, I believe, the base of Cheetolini’s lawyer’s ‘arguments’. Or that it’s all to investigate Hunter Biden, son of presidential candidate hopeful Joe Biden…cause corruption rumble rumble grumble rumble.
Madeline Peltz–Alan Dershowitz has repeatedly cited Harvard professor Nikolas Bowie’s scholarship to support his argument that abuse of power is not a crime.
You are welcome to go argue that on various battlefields across social media. It’s nonsense, sure. A president isn’t a king…anyway.
I’ve started and abandoned many a post about American’s descent into actual WTFery. Many others far more urbane, sophisticated and wordsmith-ish than I have tackled the various HOLY SHIT WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING WHERE IS THE WHISKEY AND ICE CREAM moments that have overwhelmingly overlapped like evil bubbles.
Yeah, evil bubbles.
Cheetolini was impeached by the House. Now the Senate gets to decide what or if anything happens after that. He doesn’t stop being impeached if the Senate caves and tries to rush this through. Where senators snipe at each other for a couple days without any witnesses or evidence of any kind examined or so forth. Which is what McConnell wants instead of…oh, letting witnesses and evidence exonerate his orange baby.
It’s almost like Cheetolini is, um, guilty. That Cheetolini had admitted to strong-arming Ukraine and others for info on political rivals and made quid pro quo a public business dealing of his…yep. Yep.
My eyeballs and earballs must be, like, lyin’ to me.
And we have the major players arraigned like characters in a weird reality show.
Big Congress featuring Nasty Nancy, Adam Schitt and the Turtle Man!
See them argue over coffee and witnesses and what reality is, tra la!
Tune in for White Male Rage fits that would embarrass toddlers in the candy section of a grocery store.
Watch speechifying to end all speechifying!
Who will get voted off the island??
How hard will Nasty Nancy bitchslap the boys?
Follow us on social media! Hashtag impeachment gaslit catfishing shouty shouters who shout.
Brought to you by the Koch Brothers and Sinclair Media.
I have to turn to satire and feeble jabs. I also actually called my senators. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley. Twice now. To put in my four cents toward calling witnesses to testify. Namely John fucking Bolton. How can you have a trial without evidence, witnesses or…? Yeah, that’s not a trial, that’s an actual farce.
I could snarl onward with real despair and eyes so wide they hurt for days on end but hey…considering doing chapter blog posts for my Jordan Valley novel. That way I’d finish it. I mapped out about ten or so chapters. I notice others do this with their novels or projects.
The kitten, to end this Evil Bubble blurb, is doing well. Healing up. It’s been raining constantly or I’d let her go outside. She really wants to go outside. Like. Totally. She is fixed now, with shots. Jaws, spring seems early so you could be outside chasing the local birds [oh dear!] real super soon.
All right, January. Let’s hope February leans toward less batshittery from the Senate and all that. I doubt it will. But hey, I can always start and then abandon political rants by the boatload. Yay!
I find that I don’t wish to write. At all. Opening a file is just a damn chore, let alone trying to string words together into some sort of coherent whole. Advancing dementia, perhaps? Getting old? Tired of trying to ignore the world’s indifference to anything I produce? Eh, ugh, bruh.
I have nothing to say. My rage seems oddly absent. I’m just tired. Do I need rage to write cute stories about cats? No, but it helps. Anger gets shit done, to quote from American Gods over on Starz.
I’m still in end of the year mode, maybe?
Where you just want to clean out closets and boxes, throw stuff away, in preparation for spring cleaning. Where you clean out closets and boxes, throw stuff away…I have a real need right now to just toss whatever I have left in the nearest burn barrel and light a match. Then take a picture of that. To post on social media. Proclaiming I am done now. I am done with all this.
That can’t be healthy.
I can’t cash my final check anyway. I have a cat. She just got fixed and had her shots. I can’t burn everything of mine just yet. Right? That’s why we have pets. They keep us from succumbing. To whatever. Which is entirely selfish.
I can’t keep my mind on anything I actually need to get done more than three seconds.
Write a list, pin it where I can see it. You can do X when you get Y amount of pages done or edited.
Simple goals. Make it five pages. Five good pages. The bestest pages ever!
So, the cat is now fixed, with her shots. My brain seems to be made of pudding.
It’s only January.
If I ignore American politics right now, I can…huh. I can’t pretend that hard. Probably why I have pudding brain. I suspect there’s a bit of a link there.
Okay, just hold on until it’s time to pick out herbs for the garden this year. If I try pumpkins…I can’t. It breaks my heart when the bugs arrive to turn my plants into a cholera ward. Basil and dill and lavender and oregano and thyme! Chives? Parsley?
By November it will all be [over]. Right? Sort of? Political stumping never ends in America…it never ends. Pudding brain!
So! Must force self to focus a bit to get some pages done. That’s it. That’s my life goal right now.
It’s a wee bit cloudy. I’m jonesing for some sesame pork, looking for potato starch at the boxstore of the damned AKA Wal-Mart. It’s a nope on the potato starch, but hey corn starch will do. I walk by the Red Box, slow. Joker is out. I’ve heard it’s great. I’ve heard it’s not great.
Please note that I tried another grocery store before venturing near the Great Box of Death.
I get the spray bottle and cheaply cheap corn starch. I decide, yes, I will rent some flicks. I got some small royalties in. I have to wait for the slow boomers poking at the screen to get done. I do mean poking. Muttering, snorting, poking at the touchscreen like something out of, well, a movie.
I rent two. Hustlers, with Jennifer Lopez. And yes, Joker, with Joaquim Phoenix. Actual physical have to take the movies home and then return them old-fashioned rentals, even! How quaint!
So. Hustlers. I have no idea what the story is. Something about sex workers? I remember, vaguely, Lopez was fantastic in it, a ‘real’ surprise. Um. She can actually act when given a decent script, y’all. Out of Sight, hello.
Hustlers, with Constance Wu as well in it, is the tale of strippers hustling Wall Street guys from about the 2000’s until the hustling hustlers got caught. Based on a true story. We get that these women are friends, they look out for each other, that they are trying to pay bills, take care of their kids and families, have lives. This is done subtly, just part of the conversations as they get ready for work in the dressing room or on breaks. At the heart of this film is the friendship that develops between Ramona and Destiny. And the question—how real is it? As Ramona knows all the tricks, is a slick, very good hustler who knows how to read the men around her to empty their wallets. Is she just using Destiny or is there an actual connection there?
Lopez plays a seasoned, been there, done that pro who takes the newcomer, Wu, under her fur-covered wing. And Lopez struts her stuff and then some. She gathers a gang as the fortune’s of the strip club decline, due to the recession that hits, and the four decide to hustle Wall Streeters without having to do much more than smile and drink. I don’t want to give away the plot more than that. There’s betrayals and trust broken and a truly quiet heart-breaking moment near the end. Well done. Well done, Hustlers!
What can I say that has not been hashed out until the cows dance home covered with greasepaint?
I could not stop watching Phoenix. More to catch moments when he was just being, not ACTING. The story, eh. White guy gets ignored; already nuts, gets more nuts, sad, bang bang, Batman villain.
I should write movie plots for a living.
So a stray thought after the movie ended. What if Batman is a figment of Arthur’s imagination? What if there’s no Gotham superhero? What if Arthur made up an arch nemesis to make himself seem more important? As he spends the entire film doing what now? Oh yeah, imagining how important and loved he is.
Kind of like the Buffy episode where she thinks she’s in a mental hospital just imagining she’s the slayer. [Normal Again, Season Six]
Buffy chooses her reality, we’re left a bit…oh crap, what if she’s actually just some insane young woman with these dark delusions? Then season seven happens and you sort of long for season six. For season six to reassure you most of season seven is just a fever dream from season two. If anyone gets that, they are true Buffy fanatics.
I kept waiting for the Joker to give me more, I guess, is my take on this. Yes, Phoenix delivers his usual stellar totally immersed in it performance. He’s ACTING. He starts at eleven and goes to twelve. He never let us forget that he’s ACTING DAMN IT.
Not. One. Time.
This is his There Will Be Blood on steroids role. He channeled his inner Daniel Day Lewish, and are we not entertained? Oh my gosh, imagine Russell Crowe in this. Or Tom Hanks! TOM HANKS AS THE JOKER. Oh my lordy, Hollyweird– MAKE THAT HAPPEN.
Back to Phoenix, who is this generations De Niro. Bwha ha ha ha. It snowed, I’m a bit giddy. There’s chocolate in the house. Okay!
It’s uncomfortably repellent to watch his character. Yet it’s reassuringly ‘this is every crazy guy since Travis Bickle’ at times as well.
De Niro appears in this as a talk show host—which is why I kept flashing to Taxi Driver?
I also had another THOUGHT. What if this is the director’s ode, subconscious or not, to Taxi Driver? I am so damn original it slays me. Get it, Buffy fans?
A lone, socially awkward man with delusions about life, women and fame, turns into a criminal/hero uneasy mixture while committing murders.
The lone wolf vigiliante gunman the peasants can rally around trope/archetype/American masturbation go-to.
The Joker torches off actual protests in a city run by rich fat cats, Bruce Wayne’s dad being the fattest cat of them all. Where the poor might actually start eating the rich at a moment’s notice. Gee.
Those opposing what the rich are doing are painted as thuggish criminals with clown masks on. Um. Gulp. The scenes with the throngs of what looks like men seem lifted straight out of a medieval painting about hell. Fire, leering demons with strange fixed faces, violence, chaos, destruction of property. Might as well call the clown-masked protesters Antifa and rake in the cash. Have narration provided by Handtitty or Fucker Carlsfart.
This film seems more about comforting those in charge, than upsetting any actual apple carts. It offers nothing new or insightful.
Do we sympathize with this repellent character or root for the repellent other side on all this? What are we supposed to do here?
All while setting up how a white savior in a bat suit will return Gotham to Law and Order and get those Family Values back into hearth and home.
Protestors, schmo-testors! Let them eat cake. They’re all nuts who just want to burn everything down. The Jews are probably behind all that…Sorry. I’m crossing my streams. Yes, that is a Ghostbusters call out. Yes, it is.
Sure, this film reads almost like right wing propaganda. Almost. Strangely, there’s three Wall Street guys, employees of Wayne Enterprises, who set off the clown stuff. With people shrugging, going, eh, who cares, they deserved it. Rather like the sentiments in Hustlers. I somehow picked out two Fuck Wall Street movies. Except. Wall Street wins in both movies. The hustlers face consequences, Arthur Fleck faces consequences, Wall Street hustlers and murders without a care in the world. Yeah. I need some cake.
note--The sesame pork turned out really good. So proud of myself there. And of course after spring-like warm weather, last night it snowed. Teach me to rent movies I have to old-fashion return to the nearest Red Box.
I really enjoyed myself. I was expecting campy badness to the nth degree. I got a big screen attempt at an overly musical musical that does not boast any sort of coherent or linear story. This film is based on theAndrew Lloyd Weber musical—which is people dressed up like cats writhing and singing for two hours. Sure, there’s something about picking a cat to go to the Heavyside Layer. Where that cat gets a new life—this reads strangely like death. It’s a weird two hour long cat sacrifice? How Egyptian.
Cats is based on the T.S. Eliot poem—Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats.
The current movie has been directed by Tobe Hooper. It features Judi Dench, Jennifer Hudson, Idris Elba, Ian McKellen, Taylor Swift, Francesca Hayward, Ray Winstone, Rebel Wilson, etc, etc. A big cast.
I had the theatre to myself. Score! They didn’t turn the overhead light off. Bummer. Did I bother to get up and go inform someone of this? No. I was also in the tiniest theatre. There’s ups, there’s downs, there’s can’t be bothered to get up once the magic starts.
So, our movie opens on a woman throwing away a cat in a bag. No kidding. The cat gets out of the bag. We’re in some litter-strewn dumping ground for unwanted felines. Oh dear, oh what the…!
These freaky human-cat experiments, escaped from the Island of Dr. Moreau, spy on this unseen as yet kitty.
Oh my! It’s the WIDE-EYED INGENUE, Victoria. She knows nothing of this new alley cat/feral cat colony she’s lucked into. And she’s a slinky little thing who can ballet her way around several giant set pieces.
Then I start to notice that the ears and tails are, um, moving. Moving. But the cats have human faces. With whiskers. And human eyes.
Nightmares to follow.
But after ten minutes…Nope! Never. I never got used to the cat characteristics mixing so badly with the human ones. That was. No. Nope. I’ve heard the team behind this movie sent in new, improved movie magic cuts to fix the CGI mistakes that made it into the theatrical release. Wish I’d seen that earlier version…yes, I do.
That horrific cockroach/mouse fiasco. I totally agree here. It was horrific to watch mice with children’s faces…ugh. To watch a human-cat hybrid popping dancing cockroaches into her strange whiskered mouth. Surely someone in editing went—what the actual fuck is this? Followed by– cutting room floor time, y’all!
Surely someone did that. A lot. Who thought this looked okay? Who??
But—the cast of this gave it their all. Nobody phoned it in that I could tell. When it got to someone presenting their particular cat, it was great fun. Some were more fun than others. I loved the train one. That kitty can dance!
I am a huge fan of tap. Love the sound, love the precision and mastery that goes into a great tap routine. Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor, just bliss for me. No, they were not in this movie. If you don’t know either of those names, then hey, you have some great discoveries ahead of you. Oh yes. You do.
The thief cats, eh, it was all right. Judi Dench as [Mama Cat] Old Deuteronomy– loved her and her singing fit her character. Gus the Theatre Cat, played by Gandalf, was sad and dignified, with a weird fluffy tail but his cat grafting seemed to fit him better than others.
Now, I wanted to be charmed by the Memories cat, played by a truly awesome power singer who made Dreamgirls a must-see. Jennifer Hudson dressed as some sort of bag lady meets Nora Desmond—baggy overcoat over sparkly yet grimy duds. Um. Okay. Why does a cat need clothes…as some of the cats had clothes, some did not; it seemed the main characters had clothes, the ensemble did not.
Some sort of overall arc got attempted here with Grizabella/Jennifer Hudson. The wide-eyed ingénue cat, Victoria, grew to like her and drew her into the performance space inside an abandoned movie house. The other cats, who had to be Jellicle cats, had to audition. Audition to be chosen to die/get a new life/change/move on.
Jellicle cats never got explained and I didn’t really care what that was. It seemed a special club made up of cats hungering to find a new life off the streets. Almost a cult of cats that other cats would have to be asked to join. It seemed Judi Dench’s cat got to control all this.
Back to Memory. The song. Who has not sung this song for an audition or for a gigantic Chinese audience? Raise your hand! Yes, I sang this for a giant audience of mostly Chinese people at the school I worked at. Yes, I managed to hit that big note. I also got to sing this with a student who had a lovely voice. Who wanted us to dress like cats. I said no to that. Memories…!
Grizabella belts out the last few verses of the most famous and infamous song ever to burst from Broadway.
And oh yes, she hit that glory note. She hit it to make Betty Buckley and ever other diva who just stood there on a stage and sang that to the heavens proud as punch. Boom. But this moment seemed contrived and false.
As for every minute up until now, most of the other cats hate this cat with an unfathomable passion. Though we do get Victoria singing the Beautiful Ghosts song as Judi Dench’s Old Deuteronmy watches, Victoria singing it to the disgraced cat who lives by herself in the wastelands. That was rather heartbreaking and rang very true. The performer did not have the voice Hudson has, but she brought a tear to my eye.
Yes, I sat by myself in an empty movie house room, with tears on my cheeks. I have surely hit all the sad spinster bingo card squares by now and then some. Sigh.
What cat gets to go to the Heavyside Layer? That was the story. Victoria allows the other cats to explain everything and then burst into song, do high kicks and back arches. She’s a plot device far more than a character.
Ah, the villain of the piece–the very sexy cat-slinky and funky fake green eyed Idris Elba. No other cat had weird fake eyes. If they did, I did not notice. No weird unblinking neon eye lenses slapped in actors eyes that I noted except Elba.
Not even Taylor Swift, who I thought did a great job with her one big number. Well done, madam! Kind of a big band standards stripper music showstopper attempt where she shimmied and strutted in high heels cause…cats wear heels but no other cats had heels on so…yep.
This bad kitty, Macavity, magicked [?] the other contenders to leave only himself to be picked. So he slunk around, acting all slinky, basically and yes, it was sexy as hell. Then he took off that pimp-ish fur coat and it was…what…what is that? It would be like Darth Vader stripping down to his undies. You’d not be delightfully scared of a baddie standing there in tighty whities. You’d be noticing the train tracks when Darth Vader turned around. Or that hey, it’s just some guy. No big deal.
Macavity and that coat was his look. Stripping that coat off destroyed that aura of menace and charm.
He’s supposed to be a ginger cat, according to the song lyrics we just freaking heard and he’s…kinda dark brown with fixed green eyes. Change the lyrics, dears.
But the movie needs something to play against so we’re not just waiting for the Next Big Song and Dance medley. Otherwise, there’s no tension. None.
Elba as the bad kitty provides some sort of urgency and, um, tension. Though why he’d wish a new life when he seems to relish creeping around being all scary. And he has magic powers. But he has to wait to be picked…yeah, don’t think about the non-plot, do not think about how there’s no actual plot to this thing. Let that go, let that go!
The pacing seemed okay. The first bit of the movie seemed to drag but then it found some sort of strange forward momentum. That’s as close as I can get to…yeah.
Now, I’ve seen Cats on stage. I know there’s no real story there. It’s just a collection of songs, with great dance bits, then the big wallop songs of Act II that do not let up; it’s over. The movie pretty much followed that, sort of.
I’d have ended it with the rewarded cat sailing off to that reward instead of where it did.
I’d have not done that CGI cat-human hybrid shit. Jesus Christ! Help! It never got charming…or forgettable. That suspension of disbelief just refused to stretch that far. I found myself watching the swiveling CGI ears far more than whatever the actors were doing. Maybe Cats the musical is just not adaptable, at this moment, to film.
Did they not learn from the Halle Berry Catwoman mess? Which, yes, I liked. But I can well understand why it tanked. It was over the top absurd, sure, but Berry tried to morph into someone’s idea of a cat. Someone who’s never been around cats. A dog person’s idea of a cat. Okay!
Anyway, thanks for reading my few scattered impressions of a movie I have been dying to see cause it looked like something the SyFy channel put out as a dare. I had a good time, I had the theatre to myself. I could laugh and cry and fart to my heart’s content.
Happy New Year. Go see something silly and fun. Hug your cat. That’s all I got.