I love going to see films during the holidays. Is there anything better than stretching out in a darkened cinema and watching some mindless, big-budget Hollywood movie while suffering from a Thanksgiving Day food coma or New Year’s Day hangover (other, of course, than doing the things that put you in those film-welcoming states in the first place)? I think not!
But things don’t always go to plan. Three years ago, I spent Thanksgiving Day dog-sitting my friends’ beagle-basset George, a hound with the noble good looks of a Roman aristocrat and the demented temperament of the emperor Caligula. I’m not kidding. The list of things that sets George off into a howling, maniacal frenzy merely begins with squirrels, skateboarders, and dogs with pointy ears (i.e. around 50 percent of all other dogs). He is also deliberately incontinent, by which I mean that the moment you leave the apartment he takes it upon himself to decorate the place with his “business” like he’s getting paid by the pound. Frankly, the amount this dog defecates is unbelievable — or at least it would seem that way if you were unaware that he will eat anything that is, or is not, nailed down.
After a thrill-filled morning of yelping (on his part) and waste disposal (on mine), I fled, sans George, to a nearby cinema to see Southland Tales, the second film by writer-director Richard Kelly after his sublime Donnie Darko. To say the confusing, shambling, and unfunny Southland did not live up to the standard of Darko is putting matters mildly indeed. To be honest, I would rather have been clearing up dog poop, although, as I discovered upon returning home, this wasn’t an “either/or” situation. READ FULL STORY »