brief thoughts on TV and film
I caught a few eps of S5 because it’s on before Fringe, and liked it enough to Netflix the first season. I have to say, House is a much more tolerable asshole in S1. But I think I got the worst possible introduction to him: the first ep I saw — sorry, I don’t remember which one it was; a couple into the current season, I think — he ignored several emergency pages concerning his patient because he was busy having his own personal drama with Wilson. Which basically presented me with a character so self-centered that he’ll risk other people’s lives to get what he wants. This? Is not a recipe for making me tolerate him. I like the show, and S1 is teaching me to like House okay, but I’m not going to forget that incident. My hope is that I can bracket it off as crappy writing, rather than truly indicative of the character as he is in S5.
Having said that: clever writing, yes. And I generally enjoy that.
Not as bad as the second film, but that isn’t saying much. Generally enjoyable. I wish Valentina had been anything resembling an active character (or that her actions had consisted of anything productive), but apparently that’s too much to ask. I did, however, love her insistence on the strip-tease. As I said to kurayami_hime, it looks like the writers figured out they have two major groups in their audience: people who like Jason Statham’s pretty action scenes, and people who like Jason Statham’s pretty muscles. (Which groups occasionally overlap.) I have no problem with them catering to both.
The plot was made of string cheese, but we expected that.
Why did I go see this? Because I didn’t want to read the book. And because I read a quote from Robert Pattinson, who plays Edward, saying that the more he read of the script the more he hated the character, and the only way he could deal with Edward was to play him as a manic-depressive who hates himself. Everything I know about the book, I’ve gotten from reading other people’s dissections of it, but that strikes me as the only real way to deal with Edward’s psychotic mood swings and other behavioral problems.
Which pretty much sums up my reaction to the movie: I get the distinct impression that it goes some way toward repairing many aspects of the book that would make me throw it across the room. Bella’s friends are diversified and treated as real people rather than non-entity obstacles between her and Edward and OMG WHY DO THEY INSIST ON HITTING ON HER. There’s the occasional bit of voiceover, but not having the entire story processed through Bella’s first-person narration means you don’t end up drowning in her monomaniacal fixation on Edward. And while the plot is made of tissue paper (not string cheese — it’s a coherent fabric, just flimsy as all hell), the film makes an effort to have a plot before the last quarter or so. Sure, sometimes I was squirming in my chair thinking MAKE IT STOP, but that was because it evoked the overpowering awkwardness of high school so very, very effectively, not because it sucked.
Except the Meadow of Great Sparkling. That really was ludicrous.
Anyway. I still don’t know if I’ll ever read the books. My only real motivation is cultural literacy, and I’ve pretty much gotten that via the film and various blog posts. (Oddly enough, I would probably read Midnight Sun, if only because the bit in the leaked chapters where Edward’s calculating how many people he would have to murder per second to get the whole biology classroom before anybody could scream so that he could snack on tasty Bella-blood in peace was kind of perversely enchanting.)
If there are more films? Yeah, I might see them. Provided I have suitable company again, as I did this time, and that Pattinson doesn’t let go of his vision of the character.