Abyss of Silence

Friday, February 03, 2006

Crazed and Confused

I have a short list of movies that I'm a little kooky about. These are movies I can watch over and over again and still be fascinated by them. I'm not exactly sure why but while assembling the list I noticed a trend. Madness and mystery. This is especially odd because I'm a pretty sane person. At least I think I am. Also, I'm all about comedy and trying to be funny. Anyone who knows me, knows I'm a bit of a ham. I prefer comedy in general so I feel the need to explore why I like the ones that are so out of character for me. Why do these serious movies intrigue me so?

Rosemary's Baby

I couldn't even guess the number of times I've watched this movie. It's a strange and very well made movie. Unfortunately it's like Psycho in that it's so famous you already know the ending. How cool would it have been to have seen Psycho without knowing that Norman Bates was the killer? Anyway, it's the same with Rosemary's Baby. I already knew the ending when I first saw it. The movie has never really scared me, but it creates a great air of mystery. I like that Rosemary isn't an idiot (Mia Farrow is pitch-perfect). I like that the cast is so great. Though I hate New York City, I love the 60's New York they show. I love the styles. I'm not much for fashion but I like the
clothes and the decor as she redecorates her apartment. There is something so comforting about those styles. Probabaly me trying to revert to a child again, though I don't think I was even born when it came out. Lastly, I love the ambiguous ending! I mean, what would you have done?

Another very famous, this time TV, movie starring one of my personal favorites, Sally Field. Say what you like, I think she is so amazingly talented. Comedy, drama... she can do both well. Anyway, this time it's more madness than mystery, though there is a bit of that too. Everytime this comes on television, I watch it. My husband will walk in the room and laugh at me. "Sybil again?" What can I say? It's on. It's like Everest. I watch it because it's there. I've always been fascinated by insanity. I don't know if that makes me sick or what? Am I a malady voyeur? You can't help but become invested in her plight.

Field is amazing playing all of the different facets of Sybil. Then when they get down to it, when Sybil remembers what was done to her that drove her to madness you're both disgusted and engrossed.

Girl, Interrupted
Ok, we're back again at madness again! I told you I'm fascinated by insantiy. Winona Ryder is very good but probably because she's playing herself and Angelina Jolie is fantastic as well but perhaps for the same reason? I don't know. There's something wrong with me. Why are these movies so gripping? Aside from the aforementioned fascination with mental illness, I think I also find the idea of going in a place where you're days, meals, and activities are planned out for you, at least for a little while, somewhat enticing. That sounds really nice sometimes. I guess that's the part of me that resents being an adult and having so many responsibilities. I've never felt myself losing my grip. I've been blue but it's never reached such proportions! In fact, in these movies I tend to identify more with the therapists (Vanessa Redgrave is fantastic) but there is always that slight attraction to just letting go and saying or doing whatever comes into my head. It sounds so freeing; unfortunately you generally have to be mad to do it unabashedly.

Ok, this is getting ridiculous! Although the madness in this is faked, unless you count Jimmy Stewart's character's obsession. I think I'm so fond of this movie for a different reason however. That reason is SAN FRANCISCO. This is a visually gorgeous movie. Fantastic soundtrack too. The era once again is pleasing emotionally and aesthetically. I wouldn't call this Hitchcock's best movie. I'd say Rear Window is his best, but this movie draws me in. Separating itself from the rest of the movies on the list, this movie's central character is not a woman. Is it just the visual feast of San Francisco? Is it the burning desire he has for this woman? And who is this chick anyway? Also this movie gives one such a solitary feeling. While I enjoy company, I'm a bit of a loner at times. I adore this photo.

Honestly, I think a lot of it has to do with the visuals. I enjoy the plot, very much but I just love the look of the film. I've been to Fort Point, where that photograph
was taken. In fact I need to do a day where I go to all the sites. I just love San Francisco!

The Birds

Another Hitchcock film. This is probably the oddest movie for this list. When I was a kid I thought it was absolutely goofy. I don't think that any longer. It has never scared me but it sets a really great mood and one I can't really put my finger on. This, like some of the other movies, is set in an earlier (comforting) time, is about a woman in an extraordinary situation, and has some more shots of San Francisco. And hey that hunky Rod Taylor,
doesn't hurt.

I went to Bodega Bay when I was a little kid briefly with my parents. I don't really remember much of it. I've been tempted to make the drive again, just because of this movie. And as much as I would like to explain it. I can't, not to my own satisfaction.

So I guess it all boils down to me wanting to escape. Escape responsibility, modernity, and reality.


  • I just sort of stumbled in here from the blog o sphere.
    Just want to let you know, I enjoyed reading your blog and I agree with your views on having children, must be a Bay Area thing.


    By Blogger bobo t clown, at 3:24 PM  

  • Wow. It's so interesting to find out that someone you are related to is so...interesting. The first three movies...I didn't even know you had seen them or were into them. I think you are a very good writer. I mean, you really get your moods and feelings across succinctly. And DO NOT make that trip to Bodega Bay until I come up again...because I have always wanted to go myself.

    By Blogger Fleeting Mind, at 9:36 PM  

  • Wanting to escape...yeah...but what does it say about you that you want to escape into pain and suffering?

    Real crazy suffering people are seldom witheringly attractive. Pity.

    By Blogger Imez, at 11:23 PM  

  • I want you to check out the similarity between the two profiles of Sally Fields and Angelina Jolie...I'm not sure that this says anything about your fixation with madness...in fact, I'm pretty sure it doesn't say anything about it, but that's okay!

    By Blogger Dana Fredsti, at 1:46 PM  

  • 'Sybil' an escapism movie??? It's a true story!! AIEEEE!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:19 PM  

  • Bobo- Thanks for stopping by. I don’t know if not wanting kids is a Bay Area thing, I’m not from the Bay Area and am probably the one of very few who isn’t or hasn’t recently burst forth a tiny human recently.

    Fleeting Mind- Thanks, I think. “Interesting” is so non-committal. But I’ll assume it’s a compliment. Thanks for the full out compliment too. I actually don’t edit these as much as I do emails (I don’t know why, I hate the editing interface on this thing) so they come out a lot rougher than I’d like. I’ll try to hold off on Bodega Bay until your next visit.

    Esereth –But I don’t want to escape into pain and suffering. I think I’m just a sicko watching the human emotional train wreck. Plus it’s fake.

    Zhadi –Profiles? You mean on IMDb or something?

    Mum—It’s a true story but it’s not MY story. I never do what the voices tell me to do. :)

    By Blogger Abyss of Silence, at 5:13 PM  

  • I can't help but think of "Vertigo" whenever I run to Fort Point (which is often)!

    By Blogger freethoughtguy, at 6:53 PM  

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