Posted tagged ‘Robert Pattinson’

Rob Redux (as in Pattinson)? (Sorry–Can Resist.)

November 18, 2011

20111118-080318.jpg

I am feeling tremendously guilty tonight.

This is, oddly, because of the opening of the new Twilight movie, Breaking Dawn I.

As long-term followers of this blog know, ages ago (make that about two years back), I was strangely (wildly) smitten by a combo of Robert Pattinson and Edward Cullen.

It was so weird–(make that pathetic)–the type of thing you don’t want anyone to know, and yet are also desperate to blather on about.

And I blathered–I blogged about Rob and Edward, bemoaned Robsten, bemoaned Jacob even more.  I became so–let’s stick with odd–that I even speculated at one point on whether Rob and Kristen would like jury duty.  (One of the few public activities in NYC where there are no cameras.)

And then, somehow, I was cured.  (It may have been seeing Twilight movies II and III.)

But, despite my antipathy for New Moon and Eclipse, I reviewed them on opening night.

I can’t even get myself to buy a ticket to Breaking Dawn, much less deliver the customary bad review.

(Or can I?)

Nope.  At least not tonight.

Hmmmm….

(But what about… next week…????)

Mermaid Sonnet – “Different Tastes in Mythical Creatures”

September 26, 2011

Mermaid

I am reposting this poem and painting as an entry in the weekly links of another very active poetry site, Gooseberry Garden, which is focusing this week on mythology.   A dear friend had suggested the topic of mermaids for a poem, which I used as a writing exercise.   At first, I envisaged a poem about teenage girls diving into the surf on a tropical beach; but the poem that came out was somewhat different. (I’m afriad that I had a Robert Pattinson fixation at the time, and somehow brought the subject of mermaids around to vampires.

Different Tastes in Mythical Creatures

Some go for vampires; they like the idea
of sharp but elegant pursuit, the notion
that they personally are the cup of tea
of the ruthless.  Others look to the oceans,
scanning fantastic waves for a gleam of gleam,
twist of twist, the well-hipped curve of tail;
their magic’s found in the muscular seam
between breast and flipper, flesh and scale.
They love the submergence, dive to the unknown,
an elegance unclothed in its own wet skin,
Eve and the serpent combined, slicked hair let down,
the search for safety in the dare, plunge, swim.
Others—we’re too afraid to go in headfirst,
would rather wait, dryly, to slake another’s thirst.

For more on the mechanics on sonnets, check here.

Pattinson/Palin;Twilight/Fox.

December 15, 2010

Pattinson

Palin

I was thinking last night about past topics/obsessions of this blog.  Two came to mind:  Sarah Palin and Robert Pattinson (who, for the non-cognoscienti, plays Edward Cullen, star vampire, in the movies based on Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight.)

So, what do Palin and Pattinson have in common?

  1. Big hair.
  2. Careers in which they act out the part of  ordinary Americans.   (Rob, of course, pretends to be a blood-sucking ordinary American, Sarah to be a non-money and celebrity-sucking ordinary American.)
  3. Close relationships with dark-haired teenage girls (or just past teenage), which have somehow augmented their celebrity.  (Okay, that one’s a bit silly.)
  4. Media vehicles that promote fantasy, the bare suppression (or not) of intense (seeming) passion, and (ahem) abstinence.  (Twilight/Fox).
  5. Fortunes that have been made from such media vehicles.
  6. Exuberant fans who do not seem to question what skeptics view as possible deficiencies–Rob’s acting, Sarah’s governing.   (Query–is it the hair?  Or the fantasy?)


Calling Robert Pattinson

October 4, 2010

Where Are You RPatz?

Oh where oh where oh where is Robert Pattinson when you need him?

It’s October (possibly only weeks before another Black Tuesday) and I’m desperate for some escapism–mind candy, serial silliness, possibly  believable fantasy.  (This is not the kind of fantasy that imagines that the people of this country will finally join ranks to take positive action over any of the 4 E’s – Education, Energy, the Environment and the Economy – this is something I can sink my teeth into.)

Oh Rob!  What I need is something…  anything… to take my mind away from the facts that winter is icumen in, another office Christmas party almost upon me, and, most mindboggling of all, another year, another decade, is beginning and I still haven’t finished virtually any of the projects that I thought I would surely have finished by the last decade.  (Make that millenium!)

Rob!

Last October, you offered solace!  Smoulder! The image of a restrained, caring, wealthy vampire who would do just about anything for an outwardly clumsy and ordinary but secretly gifted and super sweet-smelling Everygirl.  (The kind we all are at heart.)   And, in the glare of you and Kristen and all those paparazzi, I could simply avoid all that work I promised myself I would do.

And now what?

Well, for one thing, you’ve cut your hair.

And, sorry, but now I’ve seen the movies.  (I don’t blame you.  Honestly, it’s the screenwriter, directors, producers–)

So what do I do?

Paul Krugman just doesn’t cut it.  (Seriously.)

I’m allergic to chocolate.

And forget about those silly Swedish books. Salander is sometimes fun,  but Kalle f–ing Blomquist?

I guess I’ll just have to get working.

(Lhude sing goddamn.)

Super Hot Day Brings Up Edward And Bella Again – Is The Fascination About Sex, Marriage, Feminism (Or Lack Thereof)? Or Just All the Carrying?

July 6, 2010

Modern Harried Female and Embarrassed Robert Pattinson (as Edward Cullen)

I hate to try the patience of my regular followers.  I ask for forgiveness based on the fact that it was 102 degrees in my city today, and  I have used very little AC for several hours in a perhaps misguided attempt to support Con Edison (as well as our troops abroad, and our environment at home.)

So, under guise of a very wilted brain, I am returning to a discussion of Twilight, it having re-entered my consciousness with the new Eclipse movie.  Only this time I’m approaching it from a sociological perspective and not an “isn’t-Robert-Pattinson-so-much-cuter-than-that-Lautner-guy” perspective.

There has been much discussion of the sexual conservativism of Mormon Stephanie Meyer’s books (the lesson of “sure, dear, sneak a vampire up to your bedroom every night, just don’t, you know, have, like, sex with him. “)

But the truly old fashioned aspect of the books relates to sex as in gender roles, rather than to sex (or the lack thereof) as an activity.  Frankly, when viewed through this lens, the appeal of the books to middle-aged women (the mothers or grandmothers of the target teen audience) is really kind of sad.

Much is made in the movies of a love triangle between Bella and her vampire suitor Edward and werewolf suitor Jacob, but, frankly, in the books – spoiler alert- Edward wins hands (ahem) down.

No, the true choice for Bella (as written) is not between Edward and Jacob, but between a) Edward, a life of very ample financial security, sex (finally) and devoted, if controlling, companionship, and b) having a life on her own—that is, going to college, having a career (vampires have to keep too low a profile to pursue work or renown in any meaningful way), having an ongoing relationship with her birth family, having children (although this one doesn’t come up for a while), having her choice of friends, having to wear sunblock, and (though rarely mentioned) eating food.   (Edward sort of sums all these things up in “having a soul”.)

This choice, if you think about it, sounds an awful lot like the choices faced by many women in the past (and currently in much of the world) in marriage.   Going from one set of fairly controlling males (the father and his sphere) to another (the husband and his sphere).   Trading off the possibility of independent personal development for material security and sex with a sole partner.

Even more strange from a feminist perspective is the fictional fact that Bella feels forced to make her choices quickly primarily because of her vanity.  (Okay, and hormones.)  She can’t stand to delay a transformation to vampiredom, even to go to college for a couple of years, because it will cause her to become “older” than her vampire beau.  She feels the tick of a biological clock that is not based on reproductivity but firm thighs and an unlined countenance.

Yes, young love is powerful.  But why do older women (much to their own embarrassment) read the books so avidly?

The only answer I can come up with (and I should know) is that Edward promises to take care of everything.   He is handsome, considerate, unconditionally loving, but, more importantly, extremely attentive to detail.  He loves to buy presents.   He arranges for house cleaners.  He cooks!  He carries Bella around, never ever complaining about how heavy she is.  One big reason he wants to get married is simply to be allowed to pay Bella’s bills.

The modern older woman a) rarely has anyone carry her groceries much less herself, and b) generally has to pay her own bills.

Of course, the success of the books probably also arises from the fact that even as Bella makes some very unliberated choices, she ends up repeatedly saving the day, and generally doing adventurous, independent, types of things.   (All the while being carried at moments, and having important bills, such as medical and travel, paid.)

It’s interesting that the non-Mormon director and screenwriter of Eclipse, presumably sensitive to feminist issues, actually change the dialogue to have Bella say that her motivation for becoming a vampire is to be her truest self (rather than her love of Edward.)   While the change may be intended to promote the idea of strong women, it ends up meaning that Bella’s choice is for wealth, supermodel looks, superhero/bloodthirsty strength.  (And still no college or family!)  Somehow the doing-it-all-for-love part seemed better.   (Especially given the carrying.)  (And the saving the day.)

On the Dark Side of Eclipse – What To Do When the Escapist Mind Candy Just Doesn’t Taste Sweet?

July 1, 2010

Feeling footloose and a bit depressed tonight, the night after seeing Twilight Saga Eclipse. Such a very unsatisfying dose of Pattinson!  (It occurs to me that perhaps there is no such thing as a satisfying dose of Pattinson.)  But really, in this last movie, he is not so much the vampire as the “Man”, not as in THE man, or macho man, or, even delectable or  wonderful man, but as in guard guy, grim reaper, stern authority figure, nay-sayer.  (On top of that, he always seems to have a head-ache.)

One thing that the overly-stressed do not need more of is the Man.  With a head-ache.

It’s especially unfortunate because one quality Pattinson seems to genuinely emanate in real life is a fairly generous self-deprecating sense of humor.  But there’s very little humor allowed him here.  A touch of snideness maybe.  No generosity.

In the meantime, Lautner—ugh.  (Sorry, Team Jacob.)  He seems like a friend of your son’s or brother’s who comes in and cleans out the fridge.  (Through consumption not Ajax.)   When I see him I just think about having to wash someone’s gym clothes.  I’m sure he’s a sweet person–he comes across as a sweet enough person–but talk about luck.

What makes some people successful and others not?  Being in the right time and place?  The ability to bulk up?  (I hope not.)

In any case, I’ve just about given up on Twilight franchise for secret (or not so secret) escapism.  This, I’m afraid, puts me at a bit of a loss on the pop culture/vampire or other superish male/female hero front.   Especially since I haven’t been able to make myself watch a single full True Blood episode; I don’t think I could stomach one of the Steig Larrson films; and I somehow doubt that Horatio Hornblower is going to catch on.

What to do when the mind candy just isn’t very sweet?  Will I have to write my own?   (It just might be easier to bulk up.)

Twilight Saga Eclipse – Embarrassing – Something To Learn From

July 1, 2010

Embarrassed Pattinson

I’m putting aside all this discussion of constitutional issues and the Second Amendment today and getting to something really important:  the new cinematic installment of the Twilight Saga – Eclipse.

And I’ll stop right here.  I can’t, with a straight face, call it really important.  With a straight face, all I can call it is really terrible.

The most fun part, in fact. was standing in line in the theater with two twenty-somethings who kept talking about how much they hoped that they would not run into anyone they knew, and which particular person they would least want to run into.

At the end of the movie, we all three walked away very very fast.

The problem, aside from idiotic dialogue, and visuals that, on individual shots, make the actors look incapacitated by angst or glum boredom, and group shots, as if they are on a fashion photo shoot, is that its makers disdain the basic material.  Yes, the books are goofy; yes, the writer is a Mormon; yes, a big feature in the plot is the maintenance of chastity before marriage; and yes, Edward is just too “good” to be true—yes, these factors are all pretty dumb and very uncool (as is a lot of the Twilight crowd),  but they are the givens; a big part of what made the books popular.

One can feel the director, David Slade, the script writer, Melissa Rosenberg, strain against these very uncool, unhip, givens; they seem embarrassed to be connected to a movie promoting them  (just as we, hip New Yorkers, were embarrassed to see it.)  (Although Slade and Rosenberg are, I’m sure, eager enough to make money from it.)

The exceptions here are perhaps Taylor Lautner who seems, sorry, clueless enough, not to mind the story, and still too thrilled by the fact that they kept him in to be disdainful of anything, and Billie Burke, who is just a good professional actor.  Okay, okay—I’m not going to blame Pattinson (who is given truly awful lines, and very little leeway to smile charmingly) or Stewart either.  It’s the Director and Screenwriter, who seem like the true teenagers here, mortified by their parent, i.e. their base storyline.

But a movie that doesn’t like itself is just not likeable.   To make a stupid, uncool, story work, you have to just go with the stupid, uncool flow, not try for a stupid cool flow.  (Otherwise, it just doesn’t make internal sense.)

Bringing this around to something that may be of more interest to followers of this blog:  it really is important, in pursuing any kind of artistic endeavor, to make a kind of peace with it, to let go of that edge of embarrassment that sometimes clouds one’s work and commitment.  If you find your work truly embarrassing (not because of modesty, but because of something deeper—because the work is it is too personal, too openly reflective of your goofy side, or the opposite, too blatantly commercial and not reflective of your goofy side), it will be very difficult for you to really push it to any kind of happy fruition.