Happy New Year: Notes

Hey You,

I’ve decided to write you a letter, filled with notes, on New Year’s Day. That is, the letter is being written today. I didn’t mean to imply that the letter will concern today. Thought it might.

Note #1: Every time I remove or insert my contact lenses there comes a point in the removal or insertion routine where I am bent over my contact lens case, closely examining a lens, and I reach for the solution. Every time this happens I remember that I have long thought about describing a fictional man engaged in the same phenomenon as appearing like a chemist or a mad scientist.

Not that I write a lot of fiction or anything.

Note #2: Tonight after Soren went to bed, Lindsey and I watched Amelie. I enjoyed it. I was charmed. I have to admit that certain aspects of that movie that are meant to be charming in kind of an obvious way, and I found myself reluctantly charmed. For example, the lists of the characters’ likes and dislikes. Either MySpace and Facebook lists of likes and dislikes have been fashioned in the likeness of those found in Amelie, or else the other way around. And for some reason I can’t help but find whichever the unoriginal version is, a bit contrived. Lindsey tells me the movie was made prior to the advents of MySpace and Facebook. Amelie is the original piece and the legions of MySpacers whose likes and dislikes are modeled after those found in it are the unoriginal ones. Go figure.

Note #3: I have started the movie “Citizen Kane”, which, apparently, is widely considered the all time best American-made film, an unexaggrerated 10 times, in the middle of each of which I fell asleep. I have, however, seen a movie about the movie Citizen Kane, in which Liev Schreiber plays Orson Welles.

Note #4: I have used the Amazon money my parents gave me for Christmas to buy a Kindle. I completed the Book of Atrus (on my iPhone) and have begun the Book of Ti’ana (on my Kindle), after which a movie will be made. I actually enjoyed the Book of Atrus quite a bit and want my sister Laura to read it.

In related news, Riven came out on iPhone and I started it. My dad has played it and said it was a good story, a good experience. I would like to write about the virtues of the game – specifically its engrossing narrative, photo-realistic visuals and well-directed, well-acted live-action footage, eerily realistic sound effects, original score, and the depth, scope, and difficulty of the mind-bending puzzles, but the task is daunting. I couldn’t do it justice. Also, since I haven’t played through the entire game, you wouldn’t trust me as an authority on the matter. That, and I haven’t played through or read about as many games as, say, Max. So I’m not really an authority on gaming generally. But, I am so far impressed, and the game won scores of awards and sold millions and millions of copies, so. Right.

Anyway, Chris and his wife (!) have also begun playing through Riven and so I have someone(s) I will get to talk to throughout the adventure.

Note #5: I wish I could remember everything I wanted to write you about. Over the holiday season I’ve had minor epiphanies, stumbled upon interesting biographies, heard insightful anecdotes, underwent experiences fit for vignetting, and thought up cool topics to round up links concerning. But I haven’t had the wherewithal (or wherewolfal) to take good notes, or the time to develop my thoughts or put in the wordsmithing required to forge aforementioned minor epiphanies, interesting biographies upon which I stumbled, insightful anecdotes I heard, experiences fit for vignetting I underwent, and cool topics to round up links concerning that I thought up into presentable blog posts. Not that any of my posts so far have really been polished, but still.

I have thought about posting a blog per week in January. 4. Four posts. I will think some more about it.

Until next time,


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5 Responses to Happy New Year: Notes

  1. auntlouise

    Hey, Louis and Lindsay and Soren,
    Happy New Year! May the coming year bring only good things for you.

  2. Thanks auntlouise, and same to you!

  3. Chris

    Louis! I love you, man.

    ANYWAY, in regards to

    note #2: Yeah, ‘Amelie’ is pretty good. It DOES have charming features, as I remember. However, when a film or more specifically, its features, are so obviously charming, I find myself irritated (is that the right word?) and perhaps forced into acknowledging the qualities of its charm, regardless of how good or true these qualities are.

    note #3: OH MY GOSH LOUIS. Dude, make it through “Citizen Kane”; put your cool glasses on, buy yourself a 6-pack of Mountain Dew, and, most imortantly, don’t fall asleep. It will be worth the work.

    If I may offer up a piece of advice on how to accomplish the last part of my prescription: watch this film carefully. I am certain you will enjoy it. Don’t watch it late at night (though I know you will) and when you’re tired (which you will be).

    To begin to understand why ‘Citizen Kane’ is reverred as it is, let’s look at Orson Welles’ contributions to the film. First off, he directed, produced, and co-wrote it. Oh yeah, he also starred in it.

    Of these feats, all were nominated for Academy Awards (of course, not production, because there is no award for best production) and the film took the Oscar home for Best Original Screenplay.

    Welles was a prodigious-everything. He was very talented. He was so talented, that RKO Pictures gave him a very generous contract (cir. 1939, I believe) with creative control. So what did Welles do with this control? He brought the entire Mercury Theater (his theater group in New York, which he had started) to Hollwood. He then attempted to create an indepedent production company, similarly, this time in Hollywood.

    But as I understand it, the film is one of those pieces of work which was lauded by critics, receiving outstanding reviews, however once reaching theaters, did very poorly. Obviously the general audiences did not get it (I say this because of how it is modernly viewed, or at least one view of it).

    Referencing my Norton film book: “Part of the impact ‘Kane’ had for its original audience lay in the exhilerating sense it gave of a bright, iconoclastic young director using the means of production against one of America’s most wealthy media moguls.”

    The film is not amazing merely because of its topical relevance, but also for its aristic qualities. I have heard comparisons between the exagerations of perspective within ‘Kane’ and those of the German Expressionist films of the 20’s.

    However, what I remember of the film that struck me was its use of juggling time and perspective.

    I too have heard (and read) that ‘Citizen Kane’ is the best American Picture of all time. Roger Ebert thinks so. Though that is putting it quite simply, don’t you think? I mean, I have read a similar statement regarding the first two Godfather films.

    note #4: Aww. You got a Kindle?

    Concerning Riven: I talked with Abby, and I think we decided that playing through it, at this stage, is very difficult, near impossible. So we’re agreed to spend some time, independently, exploring the world of Riven, and then returning to the game together to work through it. But yeah, we should talk about it soon! I love the Myst Worlds.

    You had minor epiphanies? Wow. Do tell. In blog post(s) or here.

  4. Chris

    I forgot to mention Welles was married to Rita Hayworth. Eeeyyahh…

  5. I think you get it – when a piece is ‘too’ proficient at being charming it’s like its deliberateness shows through, destroying some of the charm. But then, it ‘is’ charming after all, so I feel forced into submitting to its charm. Which, nobody likes to feel forced into things, you know?

    On your recommendation, I will choke down Citizen Kane.

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