Saturday, December 29, 2007


About this picture: for a long time the only brownstone on 92nd St. between B'way and West End was a black evangelical church with lively singing on Sunday mornings after the spiffily dressed men and the wonderfully hatted women had gathered. But about five years ago it was sold to a couple who turned it back into the single family home it was built to be. This in the summer. It is my seasonal offering today.

I went to see the movie, SAVAGES, this afternoon because all indications were that it is a grown up kind of movie -- by which I don't mean nude sex scenes but adult problem -= afather with dementia put in a nursing home -- and grown up script writing -- both were true. Plus two of the best actors now at the peak of their powers are in it, Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman, playing brother and sister. I could be knit-picky about the script [the writers clearly are so young they think all daath is horrible and, yes, many deaths are grim, but there are also a lot of people -- without sentimentality or white washing, who are ready for death and, in fact the death in this movie was a peaceful, though not at all surgar coated] one. Still the brother and sister damaged by a dyafuncional family have found for themselves very 21st century. basically lonely, frightened lives. The script writing and direction is generally spot-on. The movie engages the mind more than the emotions, it is an intelligent movie. Hurray.

My main quibble is with naming the family and thus the movie "Savages." That is pushing metaphor too far, they are not really savages. The Misfits has been used, I'd rather call them the Smiths or Joness and think of a different title for the film.

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