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Showing posts from November, 2018

Give Thanks for Movies!

GH and I spent Thanksgiving with our friends living just outside of Kingston. The visit was a food and movie marathon. Directed by Kenji Mizoguchi, Chikamatsu Monogatari, or A Story from Chikamatsu (1954), unfolded at just the right leisurely pace for all the parts of the tragic love story to be perfectly comprehensible. It reminded me of what Erich Auerbach wrote about Odysseus's scar, how everything in Homer, unlike the Hebrew scriptures, is simple, stark, and obvious. Then we watched Noah Baumbach's The Meyerowitz Stories (2017), which was charming in its own way, but paled in comparison to the Japanese classic. Then we watched the Coen brothers' The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018). I liked their twisted takes on the conventions on the Western genre in this anthology of stories. There is grotesquerie, of course, but also, surprisingly, tenderness and pathos.