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Movies take time

But they also give it back.

And, not least, they preserve it.

A very stilted intro.

Too precise, for my taste.

My writing facility depends upon off-the-cuff meeting the solid immediacy of memory.

A fluid motion.

Deepest thought.  As no thinking whatsoever.

I liken it to music.

In music…you don’t have TIME to think about it.  Sometimes.

Especially in improvisation.

You must immediately choose.

And such decision theory would be well-served to focus on practice.

The importance of practice.

Muscle memory.

The battle being won (or lost) before one ever gets to the battlefield.

Movies take time.

We would all (probably) like to sit around watching movies all day.

I am luckier than most.  Perhaps.

But I still cannot find TIME to watch movies.  Sometimes.

Which makes me a pretty dubious film critic.

Yet film criticism is not dependent upon an ever-replenishing hopper of movies.

Perhaps I avoid writing about the same film twice (I do…avoid that), but there is a time TO PUT IT ALL TOGETHER.

Which is why, for me, Jean-Luc Godard’s Histoire(s) du cinéma is not only HIS greatest film, but (in my opinion, of course) the greatest film of all time.

In his magnum opus, Godard succeeds in saying everything and saying nothing.

More or less.  Sort of.

And TIME has a large part to do with that.

At 266 minutes (4 1/2 hours…you’re welcome), it’s not a flick to throw on lightly.

Especially after you see the subject matter.

Cinema.

To be sure.

But EVERYTHING ELSE…TOO!

Such that film could not progress…down (or up) through TIME…without dragging with it the “great” moments in history.

[the exception being the Holocaust…which, as Godard repeatedly points out, was (for one reason or another) never documented…as it went on…as far as we know]

For Godard, the liberation of the camps was not good enough.

Film, he seems to argue, FAILED the Jews (and, indeed, the world) by not BEING THERE.

[which is ironic…considering the many Jewish founders of Hollywood]

And so Hollywood has tried to make up for lost time.

Spielberg.

Schindler’s List.

But it cannot be done.

That rupture in film history can never be fixed.

Unless, in some state archive, there exists Nazi films which would give a face to the horror about which we can only read.

But I did not intend this to be about Histoire(s) (or even about Godard).

I, as I so often do, just started writing.

Because I needed to write.

And I need my readers.

I care if you listen 🙂

[Milton Babbitt be damned!]

Films take time.

Watching a movie.

That’s a big chunk of day (or night).

And we often cannot squeeze that in.

Perhaps we could.

But we would feel guilty, somehow.

For we would be neglecting other…priorities.

In all of this, I am just thankful to have the time I have.

Thankful for health (though it be relative).

Thankful for prayers answered.

Thankful for the peace we enjoy here and there.

I’m thankful for my fellow men and women.

Those who have high aspirations.

Those who have achieved.

Those who give so much of themselves to the betterment of our planet.

I thank God.

Without God, I would be lost.

But in my hardships, I can feel the presence of a loving spirit.

I thank you, my readers.

Some of you have read me for a long time.

And you have been my friends.

No matter how weird I am 🙂

[and I am weird!]

I would leave you with on pithy story.

That of Phineas Gage.

In 1848, a meter-long steel rod was shot through his head.

But he did not die.

It is, most certainly, a hard story to stomach.

But Mr. Gage (it is said) retrieved some of his personality…later in life…while living in Chile…and driving a stagecoach.

It is significant…that his improvement…correlated to structure.

Having a daily structure.

This seemed to help his mind.

Well, friends…

I will leave it there.

As the clock is always ticking.

It is now 10 minutes into the new day.

Be well.  Good luck.  Expect good things 🙂

 

-PD

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