heard from a lot of new readers this past week. Apparently Stephen
King writes for Entertainment Weekly and mentioned me in
his column. I'm not sure exactly what he said, but whatever it
was attracted the readers who like to correct strangers. It's
funny that people can read something for the first time, and immediately
think they're old pals with the privilege of nitpicking. Maybe
I just give off the vibe that I need the brain dumps of know-it-alls.
Folks, read for a month before you start bitching about my inaccuracies.
You'll probably get fed up with me before the time's up, and that'll
save me from reading a lot of e-mail. If you can endure four weeks,
you've definitely earned the right to complain.
does amaze me is that someone rich and famous reads my movie reviews.
I always figured those people had access to some better Internet
that I wasn't part of. I never thought they'd be out here in the
garbage dump with the rest of us, picking through coffee rinds
and dirty diapers for bits of news and entertainment. I assumed
the wealthy have a secret web where information is reliable, sites
don't have MIDI versions of "The Entertainer" continuously playing,
and the "For Better or For Worse" fansites actually get updated.
just figured the rich have a better way to do everything. I know
some ways they do. Like they have access to toast more incredibly
delicious than we prols can ever imagine. And people to sleep
for them. Or how the superrich eat babies and have better toothpaste.
But if they still have to read my horseshit for entertainment
then money really doesn't buy much, and their lives aren't so
it's pretty nice to get praised by someone people actually admire.
Thanks, Mr. King. That was certainly nicer than what Mrs. Filthy
said to me after I took her to see Kinsey. It's the movie
equivalent of a short, thick-legged coffee table: sturdy and squat,
but not good for much besides resting your feet on. This thing's
as fucking stolid as a South Dakota farmer and stuffy as a Texas
Methodist church meeting. Strange, you might think, that they
could have made the subject of sex so boring. Then again, you
never slept my ex-girlfriends. Actually, I'm know some of you
this biopic, Liam Neeson plays Alfred Kinsey, an entomologist
who realized there was very little good documentation of how we
fuck and set about to change that. With rigid scientific principles
and guidelines, he set out to document the range of activities
by interviewing thousands and thousands of people about their
sex lives. He then documented his findings in the book "Sexual
Behavior of the American Male," which sold tons of copies and
shocked people for covering taboo subjects like masturbation,
homosexuality and infidelity. His steady wife (Laura Linney) sticks
by him as he is celebrated, hung out to dry by a conservative
majority, and ultimately finds peach with himself (of course).
The movie follows his life from his puritan upbringing under a
comically bad John Lithgow to his sex studies to his fall into
despair and discredit. Of course, there's a corny redemption accompanied
by a swell of the schmaltzy string soundtrack.
feels like all those big, earnest Oscar movies that Hollywood
cranks out about this time of year. Like A Beautiful Mind
or the other attempts they've made to biograph some outsider,
it is so fucking intent on being serious and high-minded that
it rarely entertains. Instead, it plays this game of connect-the-dots.
The dots are turning points in Kinsey's life, and the movie connects
them with obvious pop psychology, and stops at each for big speeches
and moments of profound discovery. His father is a prude, so the
son decides to be a libertine. Later, we learn the father is such
a prick because he wore a tight belt as a kid. Apparently, if
not for that, he would have been a swinger. As we all would be;
it's only natural. Playing everything out through big moments
is like visiting a loved one in prison: you can see them through
the glass and you feel rushed to say everything important, but
you can't ever get intimate. And you wonder, why did I like Dad
again? He looks terrible in that jumpsuit.
was pretty creepy, actually. He completely confused urge with
morality and mostly ignored needs he couldn't define scientifically,
like affection. He allowed his staff to fuck each other's spouses
and entangled himself in a gay relationship outside his marriage.
This is all clinically covered by the movie. But the scenes aren't
authentic. They're stagey, full of monologues and proclamations
that nobody ever really says. They feel too obviously like large
chunks of Kinsey's decision-making process compressed into speeches.
I guess that's fine in a textbook, but it makes the characters
less human and involving.
is good, I guess. It's pretty hard to tell because he doesn't
get to do much with all the time he has. There are so very few
small moments. Linney gets royally screwed as the wife. There
is an attempt to show her as independent and free thinking, but
mostly she has to grimace modestly. As the research assistants,
Peter Saarsgard does an excellent Ewan McGregor impersonation,
Timothy Hutton looks like he's storing nuts for winter, and Chris
O'Donnell reminds why we don't see him in movies much. Holy shit,
they should be writing lunch specials on his face for as flat
and blank as it is. The cherry goes to John Lithgow, though. He
doesn't have a lot of screen time, but he looks hellbent on getting
all the acting he can into them. His character is corny, sure,
but hamming it up sure doesn't help.
better movie wouldn't have been so fucking grand in scope. Maybe
corner a piece of Kinsey's life and tell it through the eyes of
a human rather than the pages of a history book. Kinsey was creepy
and while the movie points it out, it never delves into it. That's
because then his redemption from despair wouldn't be nearly as
satisfying. And if you want to win an Oscar, you better have a
is the kind of shit the cockroaches in Hollywood feast on at awards
time. It feels sort of controversial without really being so,
which means a vote for it is safe and gives the voter smug satisfaction,
like he's somehow being subversive. It's got a massive, pompous
musical score. It's also the phony uplifting story of an underdog.
I swear to God, the only way those grassfuckers know how to give
something to the little people is by congratulating themselves
for doing so. Two Fingers for Kinsey, unless you
love big, talky Oscar bait. Then give it Five Satuettes
right up the ass.
Filthy || Want to tell Filthy