Derik Badman's Journal

2019-08-26 08:18

Yesterday pickup up a bit in the afternoon. I managed to get my old blog site converted into a static site. It's all just html files with images moved to S3. This simplifies the whole thing quite a lot. I can remove php and mysql from the server. Now I just need to get this journal site finished.

Late in the afternoon I watched Paul Schrader's First Reformed (2018), another movie that was on a bunch of best of year lists. I was moved and impressed and occasionally disturbed by it. Beautifully filmed (a few times the camera lingers on empty rooms like an Ozu movie), and Ethan Hawke was very good in it. It was also interesting to see Amanda Seyfried in a role that didn't involve her being dead saying "Veronica" all the time. It is probably the only movie I've seen that dealt with existential dispair in the face of climate change. The whole plot kicks into gear by a young man, an environmental activist, who finds out his wife is pregnant, and he just can't get his head around the idea of having a child who will be his age at a point when scientists are predicting all these awful things happening to the climate/environment/world. I don't feel like I see that addressed often, but I also may just not be watching for it. I've long chosen to not have children, but it's certainly something I've thought about in relation to people having children. The movie falters more thematically as it goes on, because it seems to skirt around the idea of action in the face of this environmental despair. There is sort of a tense suspenseful element around terroristic activity, which moves the plot but doesn't really offer any alternatives of action. Ethan Hawke's character is dying, so it's like he can only see dying as a path to action, which is very wrapped up in his religion (he's a Protestant reverend of some kind). But then the movies end as a kind of... love story... very abruptly... lots of abruptly ending movies lately.

For lighter fair Lianne and I watched I Married a Witch (1942) with Veronica Lake. A goofy comedy, but for some reason I always enjoy watching Lake. She's one of those old movie stars that draws my consistent attention, though I'm not sure I can say exactly why. Certainly she is attractive, but also there is often an insouciance to her characters, a slyness, a that is engaging.