|Director:||Paul Thomas Anderson|
|01.08.08||DVD|| wow is this really the first movie I've seen this year? whew.|
I guess I've been watching too much TV.
Did I mention that The Wire is good?
So is this, but I feel like I've talked about this movie forever. I ended up watching this in two parts though (stopping after Amber Waves' documentary) and this is the first time I've watched the movie and kind of seen cracks in it. The second half without the stellar first half to carry it kind of splinters into pretty disparate scenes Dirk's whole drug problem is really sudden and a lot of ideas are thrown out fairly quickly when compared to how it began.
I also really wish they had the scene at the end where Dirk revisits Cheryl in the deleted scenes.
Afterward I watched the John Holmes doc on the second disc of Wonderland for comparison. They use a few clips from the Johnny Wadd movies and one scene where Holmes is standing next to his director that are near verbatim from the Boogie Nights homage. Pretty interesting. if, you know, you're into that kind of thing.
So i really had no end-of-year reflection this year. I don't know if that's because I've been in a movie draught for the past month or what... I think this past year is more my usual average though. 2006 seems to be the pinnacle of movie-watching for me (I still can't believe I saw 70 movies that July). With Real Life things intruding into my free time I foresee no more all-night binges or 5-movie days in this coming year. Heck, I don't even have a South By badge. So we'll see what the future holds.
|05.09.06||DVD|| It's hard to believe that DVD is 9 years old. I believe it was the summer of 97 that I first saw the test market releases of The Wild Bunch, Goodfellas, Bonnie & Clyde, and Cool Hand Luke in Warner Brothers snapper cases on the shelves of Suncoast in the mall. With a little help from porn, DVD had taken off by the winter and all the major studios had committed to DVD releases by the next spring. I bring all of this up because Boogie Nights was the first movie for me where DVD elevated my enjoyment of the movie from Like to Love. When I first saw it in the theater, I was surprised by its quality but still felt it was just a porno version of Goodfellas. When the DVD came out though, oh man. Not only did it have a nifty mini-collage of stills on the paper fold-out, but it also had a music video directed by PTA, a commentary track, and 9 deleted scenes. Back then, that was a lot. Also back then, the 9 deleted scenes were actually deleted scenes... meaning scenes that were well worth watching if you were a fan of the movie, not just alternate takes or 15 seconds of snipped footage at the tail of a scene. One of these scenes was actually a full mag's worth of film; like 10 minutes of in-character improv of everyone trying to act in a porn movie and forgetting lines. I think this is the exact moment that I became a luis Guzman fan for life. Also, the commentary track still stands as one of the most interesting and easy to listen to tracks I've heard... I REALLY wish PTA would start recording them again... the tracks he laid down for his first two movies are amazing.|
So, as a byproduct of getting the nifty DVD, I watched this movie an awful lot. Every time I'd see it I'd notice something new; some minute detail going on in the background with a supporting character that adds to the immersiveness and authenticity of this world that PTA recreated. The first half of this movie is pretty hard to beat for me... it evokes my absolute best memories as a child in the Valley on hot summer days... My parents weren't pornographers or anything but just the palm trees and tiki torches and hanging out by the pool in the perfect weather and everything like that... it really gets it perfectly in my eye. I do have early memories of coming home from school and passing the Pussycat theater though... and all of the cars and fashions and houses in this movie seem absolutely right to me...
And now that I think of it, I think this may be the movie that I've seen the most times without ever seeing it in pan&scan... Actually no, I think it's a close tie between this, The Big Lebowski, and Fight Club... but still... this was an early one that I've only seen in widescreen, which I only notice on a consciouss level because there's so much going on in the framing of this movie. With everything going on in the background, you can't afford to not see the whole screen.
So anyway... this feels long and rambling. I still love this movie... it IS a tad long, and the title cards are apt because the last half hour is a long way down, but it's a good long and I don't mind...