Friday, July 14, 2006

Thursday in the park

You may remember that last summer downtown Cleveland was showing movies outside. They are doing it again this year, and we went last night. The weather was perfect, and we only saw one crazy beard guy who ended up not really being that crazy. At least not outwardly crazy. His beard was weird, though, and he had a bright red nose. Honestly he looked like Mr. Tumnus from "The Chronicles of Narnia"-the half human, half fawn.

Last night's feature presentation was "Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit". Seriously. Ten minutes into it we were like, "What the hell are we watching right now?" But it ended up being kind of a cute movie. I imagine if you were a young British child, you would probably love it. I mean I don't particularly know what young British children enjoy having never been one myself. However, as a young American child I loved claymation so I'm making some assumptions here. Steph hated the movie. Then again Steph hates claymation (blasphemy).

They've added something new to the festivities down there. And that's modern dancing. Okay you guys know I have a deep love and appreciation for the arts, but I just cannot get behind modern dance. I can sway my body as if I am high, too, but that doesn't mean I'm a dancer. Modern dance is weird and really kind of pointless. I'm sorry, but it's true. Last night they had 3 girls there doing various dances around the park area. When I got there they were dancing with giant flags. Apparently I had just missed them dressed up like crows (damn). Luckily I didn't miss this:

Those things were like 8 feet tall. The girls were inside, and their heads stopped about halfway up-that's how tall these things were. Also they were freaky as shit. They are essentially just giant mascots, and even my friends-who aren't afraid of mascots-were afraid of these things. Do I really need to elaborate on why modern dance is annoying? I don't think so. The highlight was when Kim and I saw a kid run up to two of them while they were dancing together. He yelled "Hi!", and as soon as they turned toward him, he ran away screaming. Incidentally that's what I did after I took this picture.


Tom said...

You didn't like the movie!?

Have you seen Nick Park's other claymation movies? All shorts, many of them Oscar winning. Wallace and Gromit's Grand Day Out (the first one, notably unsophisticated claymation, clever writing and visual gags), Wallace and Gromit and The Wrong Trousers (with possibly the greatest villain in the history of villains), and Wallace and Gromit in A Close Shave (which I watched with my siblings and there was a ten minute span there where none of us could breath because we were laughing uncontrolably)

The feature length Wererabbit was wonderfully done, exactly in the same style, and, you didn't mention it but it certainly caught my attention, LOADED with sexual metaphors.

Also check out the Creature Comforts short. Absolutely hilarious. A documentary interviewing the residents of the london zoo. penguins, lions, cheetah, elephants (I think), it's hilarious.

russ said...

Modern dance is a weird deal.

I was somehow pals with two people in college who ended up with MFAs in dance. In fact, there's good odds I know some of those dancers.

So yeah, I've been to a lot of dance shows. I personally think dance is probably a great thing to do, but I know for a fact it isn't always a great thing to watch. I've seen everything from hack pieces for community dancers (nobody get turned away) to esoteric abstract stuff with limited aesthetic value.

I have also, somewhat surprisingly, seen some stuff that was decent. A storyline can go a long way, as can actual skilled choreography.

I just think dance is a pretty outmoded way to communicate artistically, so most of us have no idea what people are saying with it.

I must say, however, that there seems to be little in the way of drunken antics in this post, so I think that, not the quality of the dance or movie, were the real problem.

Wink said...

You've gotta listen to Tom!
Man, these other flicks by Aardman Animation
are great!
What he didn't mention was that Gromit doesn't talk, right?
Go back and watch all of the Wallace And Gromit flicks and watch what Gromit does do:
He read the paper (the front of the paper says,
The hidden stuff that Nick Park uses is the best stuff about the flicks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Park goes from some hidden things in Grand Day Out, to more in Wrong Trousers, to even more in A Close Shave!
Watched all of them with my family, and about died laughing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tom said...

Dear Wink,

All that "hidden stuff" you mention is what I meant by "visual gags" so I'm glad we're on the same page.

Also, please try and use more exclamation points.


Anonymous said...

There were mimosas...this group does not travel anywhere without alcohol.

I'm sure the movie was very good...i was very tired. And i don't hate claymation, per se, there were several California Raisins ads in the late 80s that convinced me to buy more raisins...i just have a short attention span for a full length.

Also I think all that British humor is too subtle and sophisticated for me...i missed all sexual innuendos! I'm not smart enough for those witty Brits. -Steph

Johnny Virgil said...

I'm a huge W&G fan, and I didn't think the movie held together as well as his shorts. It was sort of boring.

Sarah said...

Tom and Wink, don't freak out! I actually thought the movie was pretty cute. There were some parts at the end that my sister, Kim, Meg and I were laughing hysterically. I think also watching a movie outside doesn't lend itself to being fully in the movie. There's too much other stuff going on-like modern dance and mimosas.

Anonymous said...

That thing is going to give me a nightmare tonight.

Adam said...

The movie was excellent.

Steph is now out of my will.

Matthew said...

when you say you have a deep appreciation for the arts, does that mean real art, or more the kinds of things you decorate holiday trees with?