Saw "Enemy Of The State" today, and had a good time, especially the chase
through my old neighborhood <1>: down Columbia Road and ending with tragedy when
the cyclist was forced into opposing traffic on Connecticut Avenue at Dupont
Circle. Also liked Gene Hackman's (perhaps unintentional) homage to the J.
Frank Parnell character in "Repo Man". Some clichés I'd like to see
abolished from the techno-action genre of films would be:
The command room in this film had those banks of obviously
non-functional 9-track tape drives (traditional in this type
of set since the 1960s). An added bit of foolishness was the
rows of manned, NASA-style consoles, decorated with Christmas
garlands for the season <2>
(since the film happened during the holidays). Previews:
- The non-descript van jammed with techie guys and
hardware, who can do omnipotent things while
parked somewhere surveilling a target
- Satellite imagery with a straight down POV when
the "bird" is clearly not directly overhead
- The big control centers with numerous flashy displays including the
huge screen covering one wall showing something
distracting - and nobody's watching any of it
- "The Thin Red Line" (World War 2 in the Pacific with many top stars)
- The new Star Trek ("Insurrection") which looked like fun
- The imminent Meg Ryan-Tom Hanks romantic comedy involving e-mail, which
physically drove me from the theater <3>
- A drama with John Travolta as lawyer: "A Civil Action" (made for the airplane)
Tomorrow morning I'm driving down to LA. Between
Januaries 1987 and 1994 I lived there; since then
I've made annual pilgrimages back. Here's a summary of those:
This trip I'll try to post something from a
- July 1994
- Dinner at the elegant "Yamashiro" restaurant atop
the Hollywood Hills with B, F and another friend;
visit to the company's Newport Beach office some
co-workers wound up at, which led to a luncheon with
TRW people from previous job; "Forest Gump" at
the Santa Monica where a festival was crowding up
the 3rd Street Promenade.
- October 1995
- Drove the rental car down to San Diego (my
first trip there) to visit F - drinks at the
Hotel Coronado; then back at LA, films: "Theremin"
and later, "To Die For" with B; a night at the Hotel
Bonaventura and a job interview downtown.
- November 1996
- Dinner with F down in Mexico; Malibu with
David's sister; job interview at Candle Corp.
- November 1997
- Party with blue lights in the backyard tree
with B; late-nite ride on the elevated Green Line.
Nice holiday tradition I heard of:
An empty place is always
set at the feast table for the Unexpected Guest, that no one showing up
should ever be turned away. And imagine the gusto when a Guest finally
Last night I cooked veggies for dinner; somehow I came across
this recipe, which is quite good especially
for the sweet potatoes and garlic.
Even though most of the airborne imagery shown didn't match that
territory, and although the "lingerie shop staffed by modeling-salesclerks"
is a pleasant Hollywood fantasy I doubt that even Will Smith could
find one in Adams-Morgan.
When I worked in a NASA control room we never
decorated - that stuff only happened (was only
allowed) back in the office. I can only
imagine that a facility devoted to Security
would be even more uptight.
I've seen this trailer before (for "You Got Mail")
and it induces nausea; fortunately my seat location
and the cinema geometry at this screening were such
that I could easily bolt for a minute and then
regain my chair.