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Sepulchritude Forum » The Absinthe Forum Archive thru January 2003 » Arts & Other Philosophical Sundries » FILM FORUM » THE OTHERS « Previous Next »

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Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:59 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


(just kidding)
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:41 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hey - Marc I just noticed your new profile pic...
did ya get a boner dancin with that naked chick????
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:41 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Thanks, Marc. You're such a sweetie to me. I have every intention of writing about film. In fact, I'm so jazzed about seeing Sam Fuller's HOUSE OF BAMBOO tomorrow, I can hardly concentrate.

My friend is coming over tonight and wants to watch MATHILDA with me. I think it's one of those date-test movies, though I'm not interested in him romantically, at least not at the moment. But what the hell?!
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:38 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


well, set the example. When you write about film, you're one of the best.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:34 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marc, Actually, I'm not feeling very vulnerable at all. My bullshit tolerance, however, has gone to near zero. I don't like wasting my time, that's all. I've suffered fools gladly for too long. It's exhausting.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:25 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


the difference between the NY Times forum and this one is we can blow off steam in here without everybody going nuts and overreacting. Therefore, flames quickly burn out here. At the Time's forum,
90% of the bullshit is people discussing the bullshit and whether or not we should be allowed to bullshit and who bullshitted who and what really is bullshit and isn't bullshit and why did so and so get banned for talkin' bullshit that wasn't bullshit... you get the picture.

Darling, you know I love you. You seem extraordinarily tender and vulnerable these days.
This is a good place to hang. Just don't let some of the harshness get to you.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:08 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I left the NYT Forums to avoid b.s. argument like this. I guess this is just what cyberspace is like. I still don't like it.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 2:03 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


I've known you a long time and I respect you and your opinions. But, there is a sourness in your posts that makes me wonder if you're capable of really enjoying anything. Now , I know its presumptious of me to say that. We haven't met in person and perhaps you're less uptight in the real world than you appear on the internet. But,
in cyberspace you can be critical to the point of closed mindedness. Its as if you've made up your mind that you are not going to enjoy certain things if they fall into an airtight pre-ordained value system that you've established without any allowance for exceptions to your rules. Don't you think your "anti-hipster" stance is the ultimate hipster move?
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 11:48 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Once again, I call bullshit. If you're going to try and stay afloat in an argument, you'd better check your boat for leaks.

Insulted you? Maybe after your bloated-horse bitchfest of a post, accusing Marc and I of being the hipster elite. Read the posts. I see "maybe they mixed up your meds" and a knock on Florida. You think that's an insult? It's a wonder your lily-white candy ass survives on the internet.

I didn't demote you to the status of an idiot with no sense of humor. If anyone has relegated you to that position, it's yourself, and the more you talk, the more you seem to dig yourself in.

So now I'm über-aloof, unoriginal and irresponsible, eh? Man, that coupled with my affected hipster disdain really stings.

You should either grow a thicker hide or get off the damn computer.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 10:05 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Wow. Someone insults me, then, when called to task, dismisses it as 'just a joke', thereby demoting me from idiot to idiot with no sense of humor, and receding into an uber-aloof posture in which they can absolve themselves of all responsibility for anything they say or do. How novel.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 10:00 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Reason? Oh no, not here.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 9:21 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Good morning Poker, hows by you today?
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 8:54 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Shayne, The Voice of Reason.
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 8:51 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

hey come on give Ana a break he's had to put up with bad flicks, overtly hot weather, Bush lite lite and now a discourse over which bad movie is worse...time out for a sanity check here. Everyone lightup, deep breath cmon inhale like you waz a former doesn't that make you feel a lot better?
Posted on Tuesday, September 17, 2002 - 8:21 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Blah, blah, blah....

It's a sad state when even with blatant sarcasm you get so bent out of fucking shape. Anyone who's been here for any length of time can tell you that IT'S ALL A FUCKING JOKE. 99.999% of the time, I'm talking out of my ass. You shouldn't take anything I say, or yourself for that matter, so seriously.

Lighten up, mang. And about the whole Florida thing, I live in Texas for Christ's sake. Tell me that's not like wearing a target, especially with Bush Lite in the White House. Not only that, but where I come from, everyone's a cowboy. We all wear boots, ten gallon hats, and belt buckles you could serve dinner on. We all ride horses, dip Skoal, and go to rodeos. And drive pickups with dual antennas and glasspack exhausts.

And just because *you* like things shoved up your ass, doesn't mean the rest of us do. I'll keep my "affected hipster disdain" and my hair dye right where they are, thankyouverymuch.

You, my friend, might benefit from smoking a joint from time to time. Recounting votes seems to have gotten you in quite a tizzy. The first one's on me, so cheers...
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 7:33 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


are you unhappy?
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 7:30 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Go ahead and pat each other on the back and polish your coolness barometers. I don't care. I call 'em like I see 'em. THE OTHERS was mostly overwrought and preposterously heavy-handed. I was never scared or even startled. Sure it was more stylish, but style does not equal entertainment to me. BENEATH, on the other hand, had genuine suspense in some of the final sequences, and the climactic underwater scene was absolutely stunning. Ford is still a knob though.

After living here for a year, I have to say that I see no redeeming value in this place whatsoever. If you're implying that my character is somehow reflective or representative of Florida because my aethetic tastes differ from yours, take your affected hipster disdain and your hair dye and shove it up your ass.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 6:16 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I've said it before, I'll say it again....

What the FUCK is wrong with Florida?
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 6:05 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


I was thinking the same thing.

THE OTHERS is far far better film than the slick and soulless WHAT LIES BENEATH.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 6:03 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

So let me get this straight...

You didn't like The Others, but you enjoyed What Lies Beneath....?

My god, man, maybe they mixed up your meds...
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 5:36 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I thought it was a bit too supernatural and over the top with the haunted house thing to put me in the mind of Hitchcock. I saw another film on cable the other day that was a fairly explicit Hitchcock homage (or rip-off, I guess, depending on how you look at it) - WHAT LIES BENEATH. I can't stand either of the leads, so it's a fluke that I even ended up seeing it. However, I actually enjoyed it. The underwater stuff at the end was beautiful. Suspense-wise it beat the pants off of THE OTHERS too, instead of overdoing it with deafening sound effects and sudden screeches, there were many prolonged, lower-key sequences where you expected something sudden to happen, but it just kept getting drawn out. I never woulda thunk Michelle Frumper and Harrison Bored could've pulled it off.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 3:17 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

many of the photographs used in the album of death in THE OTHERS were taken from the Burns Archive who published the book SLEEPING BEAUTY - Memorial Photography in America

and dang, looks like the book is going for about $350-$375 on the secondary market these days. I'm rich.

This collage I did in 1990 is using one of their images also appearing in THE OTHERS:

Beauty & The Bee

btw - I liked THE OTHERS muchly, the 40's style creepy music I took as a homage to hitchcock. Actually, I took the whole film to be a homage to Hitchcock.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 11:14 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I don't know if they actually used his work, I always thought it was "inspired by". Them and every other band around.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 11:06 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

In the mid-'80s, I called Joel Peter Witkin and asked him if I could purchase the rights to use one of his photographs on my second record album, DANGEROUS DREAMS. He said no. He wasn't interested in having his art on the cover of a rock and roll album. I got the feeling he thought it was demeaning. Years later, I think he got involved with Nine Inch Nails, cover art or video. Yes? No?
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 10:58 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I, too, would think that Witkin would be right up your alley. I actually worked with his twin brother Jerome, a painter, on a show a few years ago. Very nice, conventional guy, but also drawn to morbid subject matter. I had read some of the stories that Joel-Peter had told about his childhood, for instance, that his earliest memory was standing on a street corner with his family and there was a horrendous car crash right in front of him and a severed head flew out and landed at his feet. I really wanted to ask Jerome about things like that, but I thought it would be rude to ask him a lot of questions about his more famous brother. But I did get the impression from Jerome's mild manner and conventional conversation, that his brother made all that stuff up.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 10:37 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I've seen Witkin's stuff before. It's definitely something to see - strange mood and the 'freaks' would be plenty interesting even if not creatively photographed. However, I don't seem to share his sense of beauty, even though several people have thought I would. I do like the atmospheric technical effects though. He claims to have run off with the circus/carnival, lost his virginity to a freak, etc... and that he is actually portraying what he photographs in a straightforward admiring way without irony or intention to shock.

WDT, the movie played at the Wisconsin Film Festival a few years ago. I tried to go, but the lines were too long by the time I got there - I doubted I would even be able to get in. If I can ever find it on DVD or video, I'll give it a try.
Posted on Monday, September 16, 2002 - 7:23 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

WISCONSIN DEATH TRIP was a childhood favorite of mine. I was too young to even consider buying it, but I poured over it every time we went to the bookstore. I think there was a movie of that title made in the last few years. I've never seen it, but I believe it is a sort of "docudrama" treatment of the book.

Anatomist, do you know the work of photographer Joel-Peter Witkin?
Posted on Sunday, September 15, 2002 - 8:52 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

When my daughter and her family moved there I sent her the Winconsin Death Trip! I found some of the same things bothering me with Others..I was in a theater with a 'good' sound system and it was a pain sometimes, however; I found overall the story held and was carried by the supporting cast very well considering they were carrying Ms. Kidman too. This is one of those more original than not types to me so I'll be kind and overlook some of the problems.
Posted on Sunday, September 15, 2002 - 8:33 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I finally saw THE OTHERS on DVD. The first third or so was so overwrought and contrived that I almost turned it off. The use of sound effects/soundtrack to try to provoke emotion was so heavy-handed that I receded into a very aloof and analytical perspective, and found myself immune to even being startled by the film's histrionics. Kidman's accompanying act of constantly bugging her eyes out must have been a great facial work-out.

***Spoiler alert***

Fortunately, the movie improved to some extent. I began to suspect that more people were ghosts than they seemed, but I still didn't predict the ultimate turnout. The returning husband was pretty obviously dead, so something was definitely up. I was thinking everyone but Kidman was dead, and it was kinda fun to try and guess who was a ghost.

I really liked the book of photographs of the dead - reminded me of one of my favorite photo books: WISCONSIN DEATH TRIP.

The scene where the little girl Ann appeared to be a grizzled old woman seemed a little too reminiscent of the prophetic forest spirit in Kurosawa's THRONE OF BLOOD. This was one of the few real creep-outs the film had to offer aside from the bullying influence of mere bulging eyes and screeching string section crescendos - unfortunate that it was basically stolen from such a well-known film.

The ending, with the people-ghost flip-flop and Kidman and her children embracing their roles as ghosts was very appealing to me, and almost made me forget about the ridiculous, 1940's style excessive orchestration, and the generally contrived, ridiculous beginning... almost.

Overall, I'd have to say the film was disappointing in quite overrated. Horror remains one of the hardest things to pull off in film.

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