Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Men Are From Hollywood

Yesterday I wrote how Jean puzzled over how I could enjoy Sholay, but it's more far reaching than that. We just finished streaming The Big Lebowski, one of the handful of Coen brothers movies (along with Raising Arizona and Fargo) to explore the dark side of human nature.

All during the movie, it was clear that Jean was struggling to stay awake, and when I laughed, she stared. Comments like "it must be guy humor" were sprinkled liberally throughout the viewing, which, again, was staged over several sessions. In the end, Jean had just gotten nothing from it.

Now I don't expect Jean and I to harmonize on every film, for each and every cinematic experience to have the same emotional impact. Gods no! This is just another example of how Jean and I can be so different and yet harmonize so well. In this case, I was trying to explain to her what I found so satisfying about this movie. To me it is not just a movie populated with goofy characters. It is an homage to Raymond Chandler, and The Dude is a marvelous sideways rendition of Philip Marlowe, that imperfect knight, if he had become a disillusioned, burned out post-protest druggie slacker. The menagerie of characters from rich California dynasties is a clear shout-out to Chandler.

Anyway, I've made my case, admittedly somewhat incoherently, and Jean sums up her frustration thusly: "It's like The Three Stooges for High Cinema." And then she punctuates this with a frighteningly bad imitation of Curly poking the air with forked fingers, "Aagh! Aagh!" Seriously, it was like watching a Martian try to imitate Curly Howard!

So I love her for who she is, and accept that there will be movies which I seriously, seriously dig, Man, which, you know, are like so complicated, that not everyone will get them. But The Dude abides. The Dude Abides...

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