One Man Dance Party

January 22, 2008

Every moment has a song that, if played, acts as an uncontrollable catalyst, changing a moment into a legend. In less then a second a menial drop off and pick up on a Friday night can turn into an event never to be forgotten. In this case, the song was Genesis by French techno duo Justice. It began innocently enough, my companions and I were dropping off one member and picking up another on the back street of their apartment. While awaiting the switch to take place I pressed play on the song,  hoping to get better acquainted with the band I had just recently seen on a replay of Jimmy Kimmel. Like activating the jets of a spa I began to see our driver’s muscles begin to twitch beginning with his eyebrows and lips. Next thing I knew his elbows arose into the position that only means one thing: white boy has decided he wants to groove. The front seat of an SUV is hardly enough room to host a dance so the pulsing and rocking quickly broke these boundary lines. I witnessed the near snapping of the seat, the passenger behind’s arms up in complete preparation for such an event. Sitting shotgun, the surface of my personal bubble was first to be broken as shoulders and bouncing head slammed into me. I recoiled as close to my door as possible in earnest defense. A small push and I thought it would be over but rather my actions helped the dance gain momentum instead. Chuck Taylors extended out the driver side window, spastically moving to the beat. They retreated in the car only to be replaced by the torso of the not-so-tiny dancer who countenance now shone through the moon roof. I now feared for his life as cars drove quickly passed the our parked vehicle, threatening to clip off his body. Reentry took place as he journeyed into the back seat, I was momentarily safe but now watched the madness being forced on another.  A quick turn of my neck and he was now just a pair of pulsing legs hanging over the back seat. What happened next was unexpected. He was now shimmying out the back window, mounting the top of the SUV. The added percussion of his hands and knees working their way towards the front of the car unleashed pandemonium in my chest as I could no longer bear the hilarity of the situation. Our new passenger now in the car, the dancer chose to re-descend through the moon roof and was nearly unsuccessful due to the swift push of the button which caused the window to close in on his legs. I relented and we drove to another apartment to pick up some supplies for the evenings adventures, thinking the dance was over. I was wrong. Entering the long driveway into the next apartment I looked over to find the driver seat vacant, the door open, and our driver doing a speedy moon walk outside of it. An old lady and an oncoming car quickly registered in us the danger of the situation as my mind raced to think of how to prevent disaster. My mind was relieved to see the driver return; only to do it again in the parking lot. Thank God it was finally over.


January 22, 2008

cloverfield_poster.jpgWarning: this post contains spoilers. If you have not seen this movie, do not read this.

By now, I’m sure most people have heard something about the new J.J. Abrams movie Cloverfield. There was a tremendous amount of hype surrounding the movie, and anticipation has been building for a very long time. The original teaser trailer premiered before Transformers last summer. At that point, the name of the movie was not announced, but just the date it would be released (1-18-08). Part of the thrill of the movie was all the hype surrounding it and just how little was known about it. There is an entire secretive system of promotions that they released also including websites, blogs, myspaces etc. After seeing the movie Saturday night, the audience in the theater had mixed reviews. Half of the people in the theater booed loudly, and the other clapped and cheered. I happened to be one of the ones cheering. Cloverfield is one of the most creative movies I have seen in a long time. The entire concept of the movie was clever and innovative. The movie is from the perspective of the cameraman, Hud, so it is entirely one perspective. At first, you might think that this would limit the potential of the movie, but they did a fantastic job of showing certain things, and not showing others. Because it is shot from the perspective of Hud, it seemed that I was with the cast as they ran throughout the city, and got to know the characters and experiences in a way unlike any other movie. Hud narrates, often humorously throughout and opens the door to get to know him, even though he has the least amount of screen time of any character. With the exception of the music in the background at the party at the start of the movie, there is no music in the entire film. But they pull it off. I felt like I was there. It wouldn’t fit if they added music, since it is from the perspective of the hand held camera. Because it was shot from one camera, it is completely one tape, and in typical J.J. Abrams style the tape has gaps in it where we see flashbacks of the characters and get more information.

Just as quickly as the conflict began, the movie ends. This is perhaps what upset the “boo-ers” the most. It was a film very different from everything else out there. The entire concept of the movie was genius and it was expertly done. This movie has quickly climbed near the top of my favorite movies.