Posts Tagged ‘Naked Lunch

20
Mar
16

Movies > Books: Naked Lunch

William S. Burroughs was a writer and a drug addict. He was good at one and not so good at the other. Why don’t you take a guess as to which he excelled at?

The book Naked Lunch is the ramblings of a heroin junkie. There is no story. There are no themes. Hell, there aren’t even any characters. Not really. Sure, people get mentioned here and there, but they don’t have through-lines, and there certainly isn’t anything remotely resembling a plot in which the people can function.

People have lauded Naked Lunch as a literary masterpiece. I’m sorry, but, no, it’s a piece of shit. I’ve spoken with plenty of people high on shit. They all ramble like Burroughs. Perhaps not quite as uniquely, but there is commonality between them.

The only reason this book is even considered “literature” (and I use that term loosely) is because there’s nothing else like it. If literary critics got a chance to sit down and chat with some real junkies high on heroin or cocaine or whatever, they’d soon see that Burroughs is just another junkie, albeit one with a typewriter.

Continue reading ‘Movies > Books: Naked Lunch’

18
Mar
12

A Dangerous Method, Alias Season 4

A Dangerous Method

Freud, Jung, and some chick. What more could you want?

I really wanted to love this movie. After all, it stars Viggo “I’m a total badass” Mortesen as Sigmund Freud, Michael F. Assbender as Carl Jung, and Keira Knightley as Some Chick I’ve Never Heard Of. The cast is great. The director, David Cronenberg, has made some incredible films including Naked Lunch and Christmas-favorite Eastern Promises. Also, with this being about the friendship-to-adversaries relationship between Freud and Jung, I thought I was in for quite a cinematic treat. Something on par with Obi Wan and Darth Vader or Professor X and Magneto starting out as friends and then becoming enemies. Unfortunately, there were no lightsaber duels or mutant powers.

The problem with this movie wasn’t the acting (which was great), wasn’t the directing (which was quite good), and wasn’t the production values (which were excellent). The problem came from the script. There was no real climax to the movie. In fact, there was no real conflict. Yes, Freud and Jung had differing opinions about the fledgling field of psychoanalysis, but it was portrayed rather matter-of-factly with very little conflict or drama. The side drama of Jung’s affair with Spielrein (Knightley) was interesting but lacked punch. The whole thing seemed very dull in what could have been a psychological and emotional showdown. At least the positive and negative aspects of both Freud and Jung were explored. I know they were going for accuracy and realism, but it’s a movie, we need to have at least some kind of drama and climax. Oh well, at least everyone involved did a good job. Oh, and Keira Knightley got naked.

Verdict: Average

Alias Season 4

Alias season 4 cast.

After the complete trainwreck that was season 3, this season gets things back on track. Everything is vastly improved from the previous year. The writing is better, the acting has improved, and the overall insanity has been toned way way way down. The most noticeable difference between season 4 and all other seasons is that it is the most plausible. Obviously, it’s a TV spy show, and there is no way it is going to be realistic. However, in terms of believability in how the agents operate, what they do, the missions they go on, etc., everything is at least within the realm of reason. The overall story structure has a slower pace, a lot more episodes are self-contained, and there are far fewer ZOMG cliffhanger endings. Why bother with a cliffhanger ending if it’s just there to tease the audience? It also has two of the series best episodes: the one where Sydney and Vaughn infiltrate a Russian spy training camp that looks just like an American suburb, and the one where everyone is essentially incapacitated and Marshall single-handedly saves the world. Oh, and the stuff with Arvin Clone was pretty cool. While it still isn’t good enough to reach Awesome status, season 4 of Alias is probably the best the show has to offer.

Verdict: Good




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