Sunday, 16 December 2007

Lions 4 Lambs

Sunday sermon focusing on searching the Kingdom - whatever that means…A friend sent me a clip from a talk show where a very “religious” Romanian actor was the guest. His "Orthodox" claims sound (to me) rather patronising, especially when he declares he cares for the fate of his country.

In the afternoon I entertained Sergiu, with whom I watched Barefoot in the Park, starring Robert Redford, Jane Fonda and Charles Boyer. Nice comedy on marriage (well, the first seven days of a marriage), good lines, excellent actors. I always enjoy watching it.
In the evening we went to Theodor’s piano teacher. They rehearsed his little repertoire he is going to perform tomorrow night. We are really nervous and hope he will not mess it up in front of a full house – as all the tickets seem to have been sold for the tomorrow night’s show.

We made it to the cinema without Theodor – he stayed over night with his grand parents. It was our first experience of a multiplex in our city. The West has finally arrived in Timişoara as far as cinema standards are concerned. We watched Lions for Lambs (directed by Robert Redford, and acted by Redford, Meryl Streep, and Tom Cruise) in a small amphitheatre of about 120 seats – Dolby Sound, pop music, trailers of the coming movies and commercials before the screening - all in a warm theatre. Quite a long distance from the young Redford of the late sixties and the old, wrinkled face of nowadays. The same goes about Meryl Streep, whom I saw first, I think, in Kramer vs. Kramer (1982 it was). Time flies…The film itself was no better than I expected, having been the least unattractive title from the nine or ten titles that were on: another piece of political propaganda with “heart” and great actors. Since I had little expectations from it, I wouldn’t say it disappointed me. For a few seconds I was moved (sometimes I’m sensitive to soppy scenes!): when the two brilliant guys show the class that they decided to enlist in the war in Afghanistan, after an argumentative debate on getting involved the two of them gave in college.

Before the movie I talked to PS on the phone. I told him we were at the Mall. “What are you doing there?” he wanted to know. I knew what he would say next. I said: ”We are going to watch a movie”. I then told him what the title was. While I was trying to repeat the title for him and briefly introduce the movie to him he didn’t let me finish and said: “Whatever, it’s still a piece of propaganda”. Brainwashing? Yeah, if you let yourself persuaded into believing it. However, I dare to say my critical spirit has not died – yet. As a rather reserved cinema-goer (towards the quality of the main stream repertoire) I was a bit uncomfortable with this remark, but I got over it. I know for myself I no longer desire to be informed about the latest (American) releases. I do realise that main stream cinemas (that count for, perhaps, 95% for the cinemas in Romania) sell a form or another of propaganda, clichés, “action”, special effects, and happy endings. I stopped attending the cinemas (on a regular basis) about 15 years ago. Yet, I do feel like going to the movies, from time to time, to watch the least “American” movie from the selection of predominantly American films shown at the multiplex cinemas. And I have been waiting for the multiplex to open in our city for two full years.

One thing I’m sure of: even if I know too well that I'm not going to spend much time in modern cinemas (as I haven't so far anyway, at least not in the past 10-15 years or so) I seem to have completely lost the desire to see films in freezing, appalling and unfriendly conditions at the two obsolete cinemas (Timiş and Studio) that have survived in Timişoara since the fall of communism, now that we have Cinema City at the Mall.


Diana said...

nu inteleg de ce doar arunci vorbe fara nici un fond; de Dan Puric e vorba in primul paragraf, ma gandesc; daca tot ai amintit de el si de faptul ca nu zice bine ce zice, de ce nu dai macar un exemplu de tampenie pe care a zis-o cu contraargmente?

saskiul said...

in primul rand, nu stiu cine esti, dar bine ai venit pe blog in calitate de comentator (comentatoare).
in al doilea rand, multumesc de apostrofare. la cate vorbe fara fond se adauga - din pacate, nu numai pe bloguri - sunt de parte ata: e bine ca ceea ce spui / scrii sa aibe o acoperire / argumentare. concret: exact ca in cazul Mihail Sebastian de acum 70 de ani (care ajunsese sa se simta evreu doar conjunctural, fortat de legionarii la moda atunci - ca altfel omul era in foarte foarte multe privinte naturalizat - vezi DE DOUA MII DE ANI, JURNALUL, CUM AM DEVENIT HULIGAN), ma simt si eu 'anti-' (sau 'huligan') in raport cu discursurile 'de sus' si 'ex-cathedra' despre 'dreapta credinta', despre 'Romania cea binecredincioasa versus occidentul secularizat' etc. ca altfel nu ma deranjeaza defel (pe mine!) icoanele in general sau icoanele din scoli in particular (daca sunt icoane, si nu reprezentari edulcorat-sentimentalisto-pietiste, kitsch in ultima instanta) si nici dreapta socotinta pe care o transmite spatiul liturgic si frumusetea artei bizantine etc.
prin urmare, nu as califica drept 'tampenii' cele spuse de - sa zicem - un actor ca Dan Puric. atata doar ca prefer sa ascult muzica psaltica sau sa meditez la invatatura filocalica ori sa contemplu o icoana decat sa il aud pe el vorbind despre soarta Romaniei 'drept credincioase' dupa 'amestecul' cu 'occidentul ateu'.so, no offence, as you can see.