escapism: vampires, violence, movies. and motion sickness.

i have to confess that my least preferred medium of general culture is movies. i wouldnt say that i hate it, but i tend to dislike most of them- well, a lot of them. wait... i cant say 'dislike mosts' because well, just because i really do not go see a whole lot of movies. therefore, when i take that particulr point into a consideration, i cannot say i dislike, but perhaps the correct way to say it may be something close to 'indifferent/unenthusiastic toward movies.'

recently monkey was hanging out with bunch of friends and acquintences. for some unknown reason, this particular crowd veered toward movies: quotations. the usual likes/dislikes. peanut gallery comments on directors/movies. associated rituals and such. funny enough, i found that i had more things to say than expected for someone who have appointed self as not-a-movie-person. in fact, in one of the longer discussions, i ended up drawing a big laughter with a oxymoronic comment: i dont like movies -> which led to: monkey, you have awful lot to say about movies for a person who dislikes it so much. haha. how typical of me.

the biggest reason perhaps may be the fact that i live in north america. i am grateful that i had the chance to grow up here, where there are much riches and wealth, security and safety. however, i do have to say that the general output of hollywood culture is not my cup of tea. particular genres such as 'romantic comedies' (need i say more?) or 'slapsticks' (the nutty professor anyone?) is surely a monkey repellent. even what they call 'thrillers' (usually buckets of blood and infinitely looped drum/bass beats) and 'action' (excuse to blow things up) could cause otherwise-calm-monkey to roll her eyes and pretend to be dead (in spite of the urge to smash someone, f0r various reasons..). the reasons may be different, but it is true that i find most of the mass-release-hollywoodish movies a total bore.

but yes, there has been many movies that monkey adores (excluding documentaries; im a doc-whore. nothing like a real world footage). and some of them are quite a big productions as well, surprisingly.

i remember watching trainspotting and requiem for a dream in 90s,
resonating with that atmosphere of grunge and tiredness of my generation, souped
up in chemical fantasy world.

any production by carlos saura (who could forget the sultry heat of salome
and tango!) used to be a preferred method of reality-escape, into the land of
music, dance, power and sex.

the implied emotions that spills over the silences in certain movies-
brokeback mountain, eternal sunshine of spotless mind.

hyperviolence and antisocial explosions in fight club and pulp

surreal amalgamation of mythology, fantasy and arts in pan's
labyrinth and perfume.

love. just many different aspects of love. last tango in paris.
english patient. harold and maude.

these are just a few examples. perhaps i do like movies. just not so many. anyways. why a rant about movies all the sudden? well, monkey just went to see 'gamer' last night. a rare voluntary experience. the concept- controlling/controlled, definition of reality, idea of a game (there is always an object to be proven/won/convince- a core principle of the human nature), many things about this movie seemed promising. patting self on the shoulder to remind self that cross-screen-explosions really arent all that impressive on her sub-laptop, monkey walked in and sat with a hint of interest.

oh boy. that interest was quickly exchanged with quasi-motion sickness instead. ha ha. instead of entertainment, i ended up being half-sick the rest of the evening. brilliant.

however, i couldnt help but to notice certain trends (or may be i am delusional), particularly towards senseless violence (inglorious basterds), terror/horror (vampires, zombies), fantasies (upcoming adaptations of classic fantasies such as alice in wonderland and where the wild things are) and real-surreal (surrogates, the final destination). but PO pointed out that those genres always have been popular, in fact, it's me who just rediscovered popularity of such genres.


how interesting. i was thinking that it was the general public who has refocused on such genres because of the current historical temperature- ie. political and economical uncertainty, environmental disasters (whether man- or nature-based), as an effort to escape from the 'depressing' reality. but if these were always popular, may be it is ME who have refocused on these genres, just behind everyone else! ha ha. that still is a quite a revelation for me.

it does not really matter which way it went. like light-dark, life-death, chicken-egg, spend-save, the opposites/anti-statements will always exist (as a coin will always need two contrasting faces to be a coin that co-exists). monkey vs. public is also a same issue. me, trying to be an individual, is judging the public- which is subjective, in attempt to create an objective view (ie. hollywood movies sucks, recent rise in popularity of vampires, etc). but all in all, we are all trying to see beyond the daily routines. even when i keep saying that i don have a routine (as a total bum waiting for the next banff session), i do have a routine. even a principle/motto: 'i dont have a routine.' what an oxymoron.

i got really sidetracked here. i was going to ramble about 'why the pop culture is obsessed with paranormals and fantasies- (and i would try to twick it toward the phenomenon of escapism). instead, i am reminded of that i, who often forgets that i also belong to this society, must realize that i am still influenced by the society regardless of self-awareness, and that objectivity and subjectivity really cannot exist without the other. and that everything else is inbetween the two.

i suppose the only thing that i can still be certain is that it's going to be a long time until i will walk into a theater with voluntary interest. perhaps it may even be a vampire movie. till then, i guess i can still chew on the delicious dichotomy of monkey-movie. ahh what a way to pass the time. at least i dont need any remotes or entry tickets for it.


  1. movies seem to me, in some cases,to be a surprising example of mass popular consumption of sophisticated and high quality entertainment- or, er, hmm, art. there's a huge mush of vacuous hollywood brainfluff but it does amuse me how well some very good films do at the box office. kind of warms the heart.

    and i have seen the nutty professor, and, yes, it is bloody awful.

  2. well once again, monkey has gone to see a movie, well, documentary (does this count as a movie?) and though it didnt warms the heart, it made massive impact on monkey cranium.


    i wonder if it plays anywhere in UK? i was.. gagging.