Monday, January 4, 2010

"not many people can take the tale of patrick braden, aka st. kitten..."

"and -- i'm back in the game!" alternately: "we're back in the car again." pick your movie. the upshot is that i am back in boston, having survived a rather nasty nor'easter in maine -- anna, bless her heart, drove up into the worst of it on saturday and we drove alternately in and out of the lessening edge of it on our way back down to boston on sunday. unpleasant driving; good traction but lousy visibility.

i took a whole great big bag of books with me up to maine intending to get some good solid reading done and, in the end, read next to nothing. of course. because i jinxed myself. these things happen. i still have the books so that's all right. i did get to see some new movies including breakfast on pluto.

it's a long trailer and the quality of the text isn't that great, but i liked it a lot better than the "international trailer" which was my other option. since i don't own the disc myself, i can't play around with sampling one of the trailers and posting that.

breakfast is a very good movie. cillian murphy, brendan gleeson, dominic cooper, liam neeson, stephen rea; some of these are main characters, some are not. directed by neil jordan who also made interview with the vampire (probably best not to hold it against him -- we all make mistakes), the crying game and butcher boy (about brendan beehan which i realise i should have read/seen but haven't). i haven't seen the crying game, either, although everything i've ever heard about it has been good. so i don't know if breakfast is in line with what else jordan makes but it's -- really weird.

i can say that the presentation of the ira is pretty much spot-on. it's the late '60s/early '70s - the ira were not a nice bunch of guys. one of the things they managed to do most consistently was kill people they shouldn't've done. while this isn't a very violent movie, there are a couple real kickers and i think their unexpectedness makes them more effective.

as you can probably tell from the trailer, the main character for breakfast is patrick (patricia) "kitten" braden (cillian murphy who is really just absolutely gorgeous). the movie is more of a series of loosely connected vignettes than anything else, following kitten from birth through young adulthood as he moves from county cavan to london; back to cavan; back to london; trying to find work, a home, his mother, a lover, pretty much anything which will remain permanent for more than five minutes at a time. he doesn't have a lot of luck with any of this, sadly.

there are really, lunaticly (is that a word?) funny moments (i refer to you to the first job kitten finds in london), but the story isn't played for 'weirdo transvestite' laughs (to coin a phrase from eddie izzard) which would have been very easy to do. kitten has friends who love and listen to him as there are also people who desperately want him to be different or "normal." i must say it was nice that kitten himself never seemed to suffer any real doubt or serious existential angst over who he was or what he wanted. and anyone who doesn't go "ohhh..." when kitten mourns the loss of his first boyfriend, huddling in a cheap plastic folding chair outside a nasty little trailer he's been trying to turn into something like a home just isn't paying attention.

i'd suggest avoiding the extras on the disc. the interviews with jordan, gleeson, murphy, and other cast members are pretty dull and won't cast a lot of light on the story as a whole. probably better to find the book and read that, instead. i did think it was funny, though, that murphy had to find a way to shoehorn into his discussion of playing kitten that he, murphy, wasn't gay. listening to him talk about the difficulties of playing a character with a sexuality that wasn't his own (and it wasn't like he had to do anything particularly explicit), all i could think of was, "so beating the kid to death with a cricket bat in 28 days later and doing it in such a way that the audience doesn't immediately want to scream for jim's blood was a doddle? floating around in a wire harness against a green screen and pretending to be stranded between spaceship airlocks in sunshine? this was harder? really? seriously?"

breakfast might also be well viewed on a bill with kinky boots, priscilla: queen of the desert, or perhaps the dresser.

and as a closing thought, i offer up this official bbc trailer for the new season of doctor who.

i'm not sure; i really am not.

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