Wednesday, January 30, 2008

DJ Tanner

Do you remember seeing your parents' senior portraits? Or maybe your babysitters' yearbooks? Immediately you could make a connection...every generation, or decade, or fashion era has an group of go-to icons that defines it.
Pictures from the 50's/early 60's....for those of us that missed that time...immediately conjures up images of Leave It To Beaver - with the apron wearing, hair coifed, dress and pump wearing mother or a nameless bobby sock, saddle shoe, poodle skirt Pink Lady. And the rolled jeans, cigarette packs in the sleeve, hair slicked images of West Side Story. School books bound by belts and oozing morality. Also converse...but more on that later.

A yellowed high school photo from the 70's...take your pick- Jan, Greg, Marsha, Peter, Cindy or Bobby...or perhaps the blaring image of a "hippie" in frayed bell bottoms, flowing tie dyed shirts, tassled leather vest, and little round sunglasses...and possibly, some converse?

The 80's...ah, infamous 80's. Everyone was Cyndi Lauper, cut the fingers from their gloves, worshiped Michael Jackson in his red leather jacket, one gloved glory, ratted their hair, and wore neon like it was going out of style (which, surprise, surprise, it did!), and got in shape with Jane Fonda. Basically, you could name the Brat Pack member who was the twin from any school photo...and converse came in those neon colors too by the way.

So I was the 90's. I was in high school from 93 to 97 - and didn't really notice much of a "style." Sure things came in and out...but there was a 60's-ISH style that went around, a 70's-ISH style that caught on for a bit, and even some 50's elements that showed their moth ball smelling faces. I was certain that my generation had no defining "style" and 11 years later, I'm still convinced the defined, quick iconic identity just skipped us (although I loved my converse!).

But THEN...a few days back a friend brought her daughter, currently a freshman at my alma matre over. Of course, like all kids THESE days, they look like they belong on MTV's Sweet Sixteen, wearing expensive labels, "skinny" jeans (doesn't necessarily refer to the wearer), and a shirt that has some witty comment that until these shirts came out- was considered stupid. Oh wait, no. Still stupid. I decided to show her what her teachers looked like "back in the day." She got a kick out of that...and then started looking at the kids, my peers. And do you KNOW what she said?! Do you know what apparently DEFINES my generation?! FULL freaking HOUSE! Uncle Jesse, Joey, the Tanners...I don't know whether to be appauled or excited. I loved the show...okay, I lie. I LOVE the show, present tense. I still get comfort from the three girls with a dead mom, and 3 idiot men trying, and somehow excelling at raising them. But its no "Saturday Night Fever," or "Sixteen Candles," or Woodstock (the original). A pointless drivel of a sitcom. The jury is still out on how I feel about this....

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Everybody Says I Love You

Wow...I like movies, but I loved this one. It may have very well just been the best context to be introduced to silly cinema. Raining outside, bored to tears with what was on the television, tapped out on running errands, and sickened by the thought of wiping another counter in the house...I went to On Demand and decided to search the Free Movies. It said "Love" in the title and had Julia Roberts, a combination that could at the very least be mind numbing for almost two hours of daylight and at best could actually grab hold and tug one or two of my cold, leather, titanium plated heart strings. Read on because I can't stand any sort of surprise...its a Woody Allen film. Eh, I can go either way with him. I like a little dark, whiney comedy with sexual undertones all wrapped up in a bag of blatent neuroticism as much as the next guy...but when the lines start to mimic each other, its another Woody Allen movie.
Open to Edward Norton and Drew Barrymore (dressed like my Martha Stewart on Martha's Vinyard fantasies - not as sick as it sounds), frolicking and singing. Correction, Mr. Norton is crooning away, and Drew is virtually silent. Turns out she is the only one who refused to sing...since all actors where told about the singing AFTER their contract were signed. There is a familiar narrator (correction, familiar as a narrator only if you've seen the masterpiece "Slums of Beverly Hills")who begins to explain the family dynamics and stops...and if you pay close attention, never really finishes, so we are left with a little bit of mystery.
The movie has some song and dance pieces that are wonderful...don't let the first song deter you...its far too repetative and boring. Give it a couple of numbers. They get sillier...more familiar (obviously not original numbers)...and the characters are endearing. Well, all except Julia...and I'm a Julia fan, but this movie does her no service. Her with Woody Allen is completely unbelievable and lacking in chemistry...especially after we've learned twice now that she belongs with Richard Gere, regardless of the name of the movie! But I digress...the story line is fun, Alan Alda is a picturesque father, Goldie Hawn should be singing everything she says...and there are some fun twists (hello! A conservativism-causing tumor?!!).
So see it. Or wait a couple weeks, and come by my place...I'm buying it this weekend...with enough movies off my amazon list to get free shipping.