I kept a low profile today. Eating grilled veggies and reading George Saunders short stories. Also, I watched my latest NetFlix delivery. John Sayles’ Silver City. I’m not sure how I missed this when it came out. It had decent staying power at the theaters … well, for a John Sayles film. But it just passed me by.
However, I almost wish I hadn’t bothered. I’m very keen on John Sayles. Sadly, this isn’t one of his better films. Nor is it one of the notable films shot by Haskell Wexler. It’s got a killer beginning. I mean, wham, we’re into a juicy story by minute four. Maybe the problem is that there are oodles of amazing actors in this film, but they’re either miss-cast or have tiny roles. Chris Cooper, who was so incredible in Lone Star, is doing a second rate George W. Bush impersonation for the entire film. Mary Kay Place, Miguel Ferrer, Tim Roth, and hell even Daryl Hannah and Kris Kristofferson (two who are certainly acquired tastes for some, but who I quite like) — and all these folks are hardly in the film at all. Whereas awkward zombies like Billy Zane and Danny Houston are all over the screen with achingly uneven performances. The story line was far from original. It was handled so much better in Chinatown and The Milagro Beanfield War (the novel, not the movie — Robert Redford should have been horse-whipped for fucking up John Nichols’ brilliant novel).
I’ll place Sayles’ newest, Honeydripper, in my NetFlix hopper and see if he hasn’t lost it. I’m still stoked from the smart and powerful Casa de los Babys which preceded Silver City. Everyone’s excused a stumble or two.
Ramon emailed me last week. He’s meeting with a city council member about a long-term art project and he wants me to get him the footage I shot of the Dia de los Artistas parade. This was the event that came out of a collaboration between him, Deborah, and myself — aka Proyecto Locos.
It was easier to find the footage than I expected. The tape was labeled and quick to find. Lately I have been so impoverished that I have resorted to using the the unused tail ends of digital video tapes containing similar stuff … all because I can’t afford new tape. But this was an event shot when I seemed to have been flush enough to have used a virginal cassette. Now I just need to trim down the 23 minutes into something more manageable and get it to Ramon this week.
Tonight I popped over to Deborah’s space at Blue Star to meet with Joe Reyes, Stephanie Key, and Amber Ortega-Perez. Me, Russ and Deborah are wanting to make a short video of their music and dance collaboration that we saw in March. It’s a work in three movements titled (RE)ACTION. We talked about mood, tone, aesthetics, lighting, locations, and. of course, schedules. The plan is to shoot the piece three days in June. And if we cut it fast enough, get the piece into CAM (Contemporary Arts Month).
It was great being in a room with such accomplished and grounded creative individuals.
This was a nice bit of wry graffiti in the Blue Star parking-lot, at the bridge over-looking the river.
I like the expression of fear, so simply placed.