Thursday, May 25, 2006

Got three teeth drilled today, so I’m having a tough time concentrating enough to write anything coherent.

Been watching the most recent MST3K collection. The movies are…bad. Which goes without saying, you’d thionk, except that MST3K always had two kinds of movies: cheesy movies and bad movies. The cheesy ones are entertaining in their own weird way; they plot may never go anywhere, but there’d be a plot. The bad ones are just difficult to watch, because nothing happens, and it’s a whole lot of nothing.

Cheesy films include, say, Manos: The Hands of Fate (though that’s really bad, at least the plot keeps leaping around from the confused couple to Torgo to the Master to the silk-clad “wives” to the kissin’ couple to the clueless cops…). One bad film in this lot is Wild Rebels, a 60’s biker film in which, let’s see, a guy auctions off his racing gear, is approached by two bikers, and agrees to help them hold up a bank. By that point we’re a full thirty minutes into the film. The bikers just take forever to get to their point, and the protagonist just stands there waiting.

Or take The Sinister Urge. This was my first Ed Wood movie, and boy is it an eye-opener (though I’m sure it’d be more of an eye-opener if I’d seen it uncut). He films everything. If a guy is told to leave the room, we watch him walk over to the door, open it, leave, and shut the door behind him. Augh.

It was fascinating to watch a principle of mine demonstrated very clearly: It’s the director that makes the actor’s performance (mostly). There’s a brief scene involving an actor who was in an other MST3K film. In the other film, he did fine. In this, he was histrionic and painful to watch. The same is true of so many actors and films; see what George Lucas was able to do with Mark Hamill in Star Wars. (Not that Mark’s a bad actor.)

…Am I making any sense? I need more Advil.


Stephen But on the reverse, see what George Lucas did to Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, and Hayden Christensen (to name a few) in Eps. I-III.

Most of the great acting of Star Wars was done in Episodes V or VI, which were directed by Irvin Kershner and Richard Marquand, respectively.

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