Sunday, January 20, 2008

just another day

'it's crazy, i don't sleep and don't eat, and yet there's something exhilarating about it all.'
-text message i sent this morning after waiting in line since 6:45 a.m. to buy tickets for some of today's shows.  as i handed nick the tickets for 'perro come perro', he told me the movie was sold last night but that i have a good eye.

i carried a yellow legal pad in my complimentary 'sundance film festival' shoulder bag.  it became a sort of journal for me during the festival.
and i quote:

1:15 p.m.  i just got out of 'american teenager'-- it's the first movie that's left me with plenty to think about and to write.
it floated between kind of melodramatic and very melodramatic, and usually getting away with it because it was 'documenting real life.'  that was where i began to question the movie, as things worked out almost too conveniently, and they seemed to have too much coverage.  the art girl started by talking about how much she loved her boyfriend and couldn't imagine being without him, and shortly after they broke up.  near the end, she began focusing on preparing for college and comments that she has to be careful not to get a boyfriend because that would really distract her, and at the battle of the bands, a guy develops a crush on her and they begin dating.  granted, with a year's worth of footage following around at least five or six kids, there would be enough to carve out and get just the best.
all of the stereotypes are shown and often reinforced.  we see the spoiled prom queen from the rich family; the jock who's college hopes rely upon his basketball performance and the unfulfilled dreams of his father [who works as an elvis impersonator]; the incredibly socially awkward and acned video game nerd; and the alternative dramatic art girl, who immediately becomes and stays the most sympathetic/likable.
as the story unfolds, we do catch glimpses of hopes, dreams, fears, and similarities between them all.   ...kind of.  the geek remains largely unchanged, though events happen to him.  but the stereotypic rich brat is later given some sympathy, showing not only tragedies she works to cope with but also the immense pressure that comes from having a solid oak roof over her head.  while the film gets stuck not too far beyond stereotypes, taken in aggregate it shows the facets of the struggles, highs, and lows of high school life.
the most one-dimensional characters are the adults.  school staff are shown as lame, alien, and useless.  parents did little more than inflict pressure and be completely inept to understand-- this is the teenagers' movie.  an odd and likely unintentional side-effect from this was to make me realize how grateful i was for my own parents; for all their work, caring, and involvement in my life, especially in high school.

1:52 p.m.  waiting for my third movie to start.  all i've eaten today have been two separate fruit-granola eco-friendly bars that were freebies.  every laptop here is a mac.  i haven't seen a single pc laptop.  text messaging helps keep me company.
iv'e got one more movie after this.  then we'll probably meet and talk about 'perro'.  i think i might stay up here tonight, since i have to be in line for tickets before 7 tomorrow morning.  i should have stayed last night.

3:57 p.m.  that last movie kind of pushed me over the edge--i'm getting tired of seeing vulgarities, profanities, and the worst conceivable scenarios presented as 'addressing issues'.  i wish my sunday were a sabbath.
i'm getting tired of art films.  i just got the criterion edition of 'armageddon' in the mail yesterday and it's sounding pretty good right now.

6:13 p.m.  'sleep dealer' started off with potential-- an interesting premise, good cinematography and great production design.  but the lead actor was weak and 3/4 through i realized i didn't really know what the objective/conflict even was.  lots of sfx done alright [which is unexpected for a sundance film].  the upside was that it was a pg-13.  maybe there's a teen audience for it.
i'm done with showings for tonight and need to meet up with mike.  if i'm free by 7:30, i'll go to provo tonight.  otherwise, i'm sleeping on their couch-- i'm not making another drive on 5 hours of sleep.

11:09 p.m.  in the interest of being a committed team player, i opted to stay tonight.  looking back as i write this, i remember thinking that if i got home by 8:30, went to ward prayer, was asleep by 9:30, and up by 4:45, i would still only get five hours of sleep.  i'll let that speak for itself.
around 8:30 mike suggested we go to the 'industry mogul party.'  i desperately wanted sleep and did not want to go to another awkward evening of snobby small talk.
the party was actually a very good idea--much more of a loud, crowded music party.  i saw four different people i knew within ten minutes of getting there, including an actor from 'the sasquatch gang' who was in a movie i saw this morning and two friends from provo who were equally glad to see me.  and i set up a meeting with the 'high school musical 3' producer who was very happy to see me.  the free food was excellent and i had my first-ever massage, for free.  that was a good way to end the day.
ruby was mentioning how she's looking forward to getting home to toronto.  i actually feel very similar; i don't feel like i'm in utah.  park city + sundance is nothing like my utah, and i'm working much longer hours than any movie [though hsm3 may change that!]  i can barely remember that i was home last night.
so here i sit, on a comfortable couch with my sleeping bag next to me, setting my alarm for about 5:20 a.m.  and as good as i'll sleep from the massage, not having to fight to stay awake during the morning commute is even better.

11:45 p.m.  just noticed that my underpants are on backwards.  no more questions.

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