Recovery

As threatened, I have taken a short break from Carry On movies. Even watching them at a rate of one or two a week is a fair clip. Not that they aren’t fun. But a little goes a long way.

In the interim here’s the kind of stuff I’ve been watching.

Luke Cage

I watched the full first season of Luke Cage on Netflix. I’m not a big fan of television series for the same reason I don’t like epic fantasy much — they both tend to circle the drain plotwise. Cage starts and finishes strong but there’s a mushy middle I had to power through.

I know some people were upset that the cast wasn’t more racially diverse (read: more white). I’ve watched a lot of blaxploitation films from the 70s, though, and I’ve noticed that if you add white people into the mix (like with Detroit 9000), gravity tends to bend the theme towards white people’s relationship with black people. Movies with a minimal white cast, like JD’s Revenge, have a shooting chance at being about something other than race. That’s a luxury so many white-cast movies have but probably no one ever notices.

Mystery Science Theater 3000

I am a big, big MST3K fan. I was introduced by a friend to it in college when it was still on the air on Comedy Central. When the DVDs started coming out, I started collecting those too. They take up a lot of space.

I am definitely looking forward to the new run, and as much as I like the old cast (all of the old cast), I am glad that the new season is going to be a younger show. I watched all of new human star Jonah Ray’s Hidden America, and I think he’s going to be great.

The Fly (1986)

Cronenberg’s major theme seems to be about how awful and scary sex is (see also Shivers, Videodrome).There’s a fair amount of that. But there’s also the general awfulness of sexual politics. Poor Veronica (Geena Davis) gets to choose between her sexually predatory, authority-abusing ex Stathis (John Getz) and creepy, paranoid, control-freak scientist Seth (Jeff Goldblum). There are a lot of interesting themes being explored in this movie, but when I discovered that Cronenberg’s script had an alternate ending where Veronica ends up back with Stathis — who should frankly have been maced in every scene — I really started to wonder if the movie in my head was anything like the movie Cronenberg intended. Authorial intent is a sticky wicket, though, so we’ll just leave it at that.

 

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