Thursday, April 28, 2011

Movie Magic

"Love Me Tender" will play at The Knitting Factory this Sunday. It looks like a super cool event just based on the poster alone - full of nifty short films and swanky people, all getting together being awesome. You should go. I should go. We should go together.

That's not all. There's more movie magic happening in my life right now, not least of which is a new appreciation and renewed ardor for my true love. Film. God, I love it so stinking much. It makes no sense how much I love them. Films. Whenever I can, I'm watching them. With other people. Without other people. Doesn't matter. I've been known to cancel meeting up with people because I became too engrossed in a film to disentangle myself* (CLEARLY a character flaw, I know I have a problem). When I'm not watching films, I'm either thinking about films I've already seen, films I want to see, people who make or might make films that I can watch or be in, or films I'd like to make. It just never ends - the obsession, the love affair, the tragic addiction, the romance.

This is why I gave up movies for Lent. I had never, ever, observed Lent before and must say, choosing to start by giving up movies was possibly the hardest thing I could have picked. As soon as I shared it with my roommates they all said, "Oooh, yeah, that's a really good one for you." (Again, CLEARLY I have a problem). This decision was reached not without pain. After a long (and delicious) week of watching at least 14 hours of BBC miniseries on Netflix as well as the entire trilogy of "The Girl With A Dragon Tattoo" films, I was feeling pretty happy in my little movie bubble. Then out of nowhere, in the shower, almost like a disembodied voice, the thought came to me - Jeanne Joe should give up movies for Lent.

I didn't know if it was possible, I didn't even really know why - it just felt like the right thing to do. As soon as I thought of it, I was pissed off for thinking of it. NO WAY, I thought. Why would I give up movies? How could I give up movies? Crazy talk! But then, the glove had been tossed. I couldn't NOT do it, now that I had thought of doing it. It was a challenge from the universe. I had to do it.

And it was stinking hard. At first, I thought it might be a good way to force myself to be more outgoing in my free time, but actually, I found that once I took the option of movies off the table, I started using my time differently. I picked up some extra shifts, scheduled more auditions, read a book (!!!!!), visited my Dad in Texas, made some new friends, caught up with some old friends, saw a couple plays, and cleaned my room. Ok, I probably would have done that anyway.

I don't share any of this to brag - in fact I did have a lapse one day and my roommate caught me and slapped me on the wrist. I was literally pulling a peeping tom, spying on them as they watched "Inglourious Basterds" in another room. It was the scene of Melanie Laurent preparing herself to burn the theater down, to the anachronistic but essentially perfect David Bowie (Cat People). I mean, COME ON - I was practically drooling. How could I say no to that?!?! My spirit is willing but my flesh is definitely weak. My dear, poor, patient roommate reminded me to be disciplined. And I think I swore at her, oops.

Recovering addicts are rarely on their a-game with manners.

My point being, though, that by giving up something I loved for a little while, I had a chance to step back and use my time in new ways. I also gained a slightly different perspective on my obsession with movies, had some fresh insights to the way my own brain works and why, maybe, other people like movies too. And while I was jonesin' and illin' for movies to come back in my life, they did - but with totally cinematic, film-esque unpredictability. Meaning, I booked a film job! And a theater job. And a webisode job. Not that I'm saying giving up movies got me those jobs. I'm just saying, it contributed to a refocusing of energy and purpose that helped motivate me through some exciting, busy weeks.

Now I can watch movies again. The first thing I saw was "Your Highness," which was so blatantly terrible it almost made me want to continue avoiding movies for the rest of my life. But then we launched into pretty much all the "Dirty Harry" films, Gunga Din, and "4 For Texas." I was in Texas, it made sense at the time.

In summary, the thrill and the high of movie magic is even more intense than ever for me. Good thing too - "Toothbrush" is filming next week!! Looking forward to being on location, working with a truly hilarious and top-notch team. Every time I go over the script, it cracks me up. Can't wait!

Also, shout out to all of my ASDS peeps! Repertory Season is in full swing and everyone and anyone should take advantage and GO SEE these amazingly acted, superbly directed, beautifully written, and stunningly realized thesis shows that are all FREE. Here's an
article about them on

1 comment:

  1. I am very proud of you! Good for you for being obedient and dedicated! Also, I'm pretty sure all addicts relapse, so there is no fault in that... :)