Friday, April 26, 2019
2019: April 26th - Under the Silver Lake is Fantastic!
My good friend and increasingly frequent collaborator Jonathan Grimm flies in for a long weekend, so I took today off. With an open morning, I did what I've wanted to do all week - I rented Robert David Mitchell's Under the Silver Lake, altered my perception a bit, and fell into a film I'd ascribed an alarming amount of expectation to in the eight days or so since I first heard about it. With a run time of two hours and nineteen minutes, I knew I'd need a day off to give Mitchell's follow-up to It Follows a proper shake - lately anything with an above-average run time that I watch at night runs the risk of my nodding off. This isn't usually the film's fault; my early schedule and aversion to conservative bedtimes simply runs me ragged. All this aside, I'm happy to report I had a perfect morning, a perfect viewing experience, and I absolutely loved Under the Silver Lake. I don't want to say too much - I didn't even watch the trailer until after I'd seen the movie - so I'll leave you with three words: Approaching. Modern. Hitchcock.
That's big and hyperbolic, I know. Don't care. Visually, we still get some of that soft, pastel style of Mitchell introduced in The Myth of the American Sleepover and perfected in It Follows, though that has been combined with a real love of the medium, and the history of the Hollywood Thriller as a genre. The early scenes of Andrew Garfield's Sam following three girls in a convertible feel like they are pulled right out of Vertigo, as does the deference the story pays to the institutions and living spaces of Los Angeles, the likes of which were directed toward the cities and forests of Northern California in Hitchcock's masterpiece of obsession. Oh, and Disasterpeace knocks the score out of the park; gone are the synths, replaced instead with string-and-brass instrumentation one would also associate with Hitchcock, De Palma and their lineage, both forwards and backwards in time.
Oh yeah, and David Yow from the Jesus Lizard is in it. When is that not a sign of good things?
$5 rental on Amazon. Absolutely worth it, but wait until you have the time to sink slowly into a winding mystery. This films tastes best when allowed to breath.
Playlist from 4/25:
Soundgarden - Louder than Love
Totalselfhatred - Eponymous
Queens of the Stone Age - Rated R
Queens of the Stone Age - ... Like Clockwork
Queens of the Stone Age - Villains
Windhand - Eternal Return
Rounded the tunes out last night, driving home from Hollywood with KXLU program The Witching Hours as a sonic companion. GREAT show, and its host, DJ Marina, keeps an excellent website with news, prompt archives of playlists, and a bunch of other great stuff. Check it out HERE.
Card of the day:
From the Grimoire: "By adding to an idea's original form, we dilute it. Not inherently bad, just different. Expect ups and downs while fleshing out and developing anything."