Sunday, December 03, 2006

Natural Born Killers

With the current events in Singur, not to speak of so many current events the world over thats being fed to us in authorized versions for so many yrs now, especially the last five-ten odd ones, not having watched this can leave you with a state of shame for your overlook, at least it did for me. Being a film freak, and someone interested in the political shape of this world (jus' like many other armchair thinking good-for-nothigs I'm sure), I now admit it's been a crime I haven't seen this film so long. It is by far the greatest love story and political film I've ever seen. Period. Yes one of the most fucking perceptive political statements to be put on film ever, right up there with Costa-Gavras' "Z" and Pasolini's "Salo", if not higher, which would be tantamount to saying the highest.

"Give me back my broken night, my mirrored room, my secret life
it's lonely here, there's no one left to torture
Give me absolute control over every living soul
And lie beside me, baby, that's an order!
Give me crack and anal sex, take the only tree that's left
and stuff it up the hole in your culture
Give me back the Berlin wall give me Stalin and St Paul
I've seen the future, brother: it is murder.

Things are going to slide, slide in all directions
Won't be nothing Nothing you can measure anymore
The blizzard, the blizzard of the world has crossed the threshold
and it has overturned the order of the soul
When they said REPENT
I wonder what they meant
When they said REPENT
I wonder what they meant."

- Leonard Cohen, 'The Future'

Well the direction is Oliver Stone, and yet the script is Tarantino, and I think that's equally important for this movie. And I'd like to quote from a comment made on IMDB about this angle: "Quentin Tarantino, the reigning postmodernist "King of Cool" who plays with pastiche of pop culture genres, wrote the script for Stone's Natural Born Killers, but then criticized the way the film was directed. Ironically, Tarantino then copied several formal film techniques and innovations straight out of NBK for his later "Kill Bill" films. -- with the key exception that Tarantino continues the tradition of glamorizing violence. The Tarantino crowd sees itself as properly aesthetic and cool, far above the ham-fisted Stone! Creepy isn't it?" That's not really so much a statement on Tarantino the lovably obsessive intertextualising film-geek that he is, as on our publicly accepted perceptions about the medium concerned.

But I can't pin it down to who are the great minds at work and who does what with what degree of honourable mention yadayadayada like we do with most creative outputs, thereby making an individualistic hogwash of it all and insulating it in a real tight candy-shell so it's safe and fit for the world's consumption. Cos it's far more than that, and it reaches you at your junked-up, twisted, by-now-shoulda'-been-apathetic-n-jaded nerves like a baby's first blink, and it hits such a right chord. If anything we can talk about, it's the music, cos it sums up the the visual content. you got Bob Dylan singin' "You Belong To Me" (and he can make you forget Dean "cool" Martin just like that), you got Peter Gabriel and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, and most of all like a running refrain, you got four amazing prophecies from the great Leonard Cohen's "The Future." It's easier to talk bout such things, than to talk bout things which we are all in a consensus to be silent about. I'm jus wondering, how the hell did they ever get this released, and how did consumerism and the 'empty time-bubble of capital' manage to digest even this (and this digestion has been well-covered, both by the print media and the academia), and yet not Salo? And yet this speaks far more direct and brutal. I jus wished I'd seen this many many times already.

"We asked for signs, the signs were sent:
the birth betrayed, the marriage spent
Yeah the widowhood of every government --
signs for all to see.

You can add up the parts, but you won't have the sum
You can strike up the march, there is no drum
Every heart, every heart to love will come
but like a refugee.

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in."

- Leonard Cohen, 'Anthem'

[credit for the quote:]

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