Tuesday, April 10, 2007


The spider outside the window speaks in folded tongues, shepherding down a splatter of darkness. Shines in its octal eyes a story of idyllic suburbs harnessed teetering on the edge of precariousness. Interwoven are the cries of ennui, sprinkled into a patchwork advertising Julianne Moore. Her perambulations rest on a bed of euphemisms shading housewife status from onlookers. Triviality infests life: aerobics, diets, church radio, bad jokes, small talk, new age therapy, sofa purchases, herbal tea, Belinda Carlisle – rashes making Ms Moore scratch. Driving into a wall of dejection, cell of husband a floating vacuity. Colours are dyed in paranoia, panic attacks, rubbed sore by the exhilaration of boredom. Erected wallpaper lined with words that say ‘multiple chemical sensitivity’ – toxins embroiled in CFCs, propagating a descent from normalcy. Banishment to desert retreat, cult connotations nailed to the wall, unease spreading tentacles into ginger curls. Isolation, Crazy Joe Davola as a doctor, disintegration like perpetual shrinkage. Nadirs smote by falling psyche, neuroses rampant. Yet, maladies figured on breaths and sniffs belie actual catalysts. Sartre’s angst-ridden plunge, Nausea’s existential dread. Analogies infect in ironic parallels. A society’s crushing, a suburban disease covered up in rhetoric of superficiality; environment? yes; chemicals? no; contemporary life? no doubt. Howard Hawks mimicry, truncate the world, due to? bruises by way of fists of trivial nonsense, and repeat. All framed in washes of lingering, non-partisan camerawork, Haynes blinded by sheen of semiotics. Success runs in distanced characterisation, but discharge of film school pretensions. Plus: wallowing swallows conclusions in a mouth lined with sentimental straw men. Consensus bind, hang-up, to simplistic meanings. Layers of allegory peeled away and a fruit of significance unearthed. More periods and dry irony to come, Haynes and Moore again. Dehydrated fade-down, notions of Faheys missed, questions of Safe clogged with cholesterolic Seagal, motion to end with a not-bad mirrored by a not-great.


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