Sunday, February 5, 2017

The Super Bowl Trailers

Watch the trailer before you read this snippet. The opening invokes the Rime Of the Ancient Mariner, with the dead bird, but also with the Johnny Cash song, Ain't No Grave: in the Rime, the Mariner tells a Wedding Guest his woeful tale, and it's to the great banquet of the Wedding Feast in heaven in Matthew 22 the guest goes to, just as Cash's soul will rise with the angels' trumpets to go to heaven and join that wedding banquet as well. So what's the point? Captain Salazaar and his crew didn't make it into the wedding banquet. When the pirate in the opening scene sees the bird, then pours water over his head, he is both recognizing the sign of the dead bird as a bad omen like in the Rime of the Ancient Mariner, and the pirate, effectively, baptizes himself with the water against the evil the bird portends. Now, why is the face of the pirate and Barbossa so incredibly sunburned? It's possible that's a subliminal global warming message, but it's possible that it's also a sign of life within them: they are alive so they can be burned by the sun, as opposed to the dead crew of Salazaar. Why is this important? The crew that is still living can still atone for their sins (the "burning"  by the sun is like the burning of hell or purgatory) and by means of which they can, if they so choose, be purged of their sins and NOT end up like the dead crew. Captain Jack Sparrow, being covered with mud, either conveys to viewers that he is covered in sin--the ways of the world--or that he has greatly humbled himself, remembering that, from dust he came and to dust he shall return. My bet is on the former because his only line is, "A pirate's life," as if he relishes it. Further, we see his compass, and knowing that his compass pints to the direction of whatever it is his heart desires, and we know Sparrow desires to live, the compass is pointing to the Trident of Poseidon, not the nearest church where Jack can confess his sins).
I could spend a lot of time going on about the juxtaposition of film trailers and the Super Bowl, but I won't. Suffice to say, these are supposed to be the BEST of the BEST films coming out this year (the films the studios are putting their money on that is going to bring money back to them, because they are willing to put money down to showcase these trailers in the most expensive ad spots of the year,... yea, it's not even this expensive to buy ad time for the Oscars because #NoOneWatchesTheOscarsAnymore); so here we go. BTW, if you can watch these on a TV screen rather than your computer, I highly recommended it:
The opening scene should take you back to high school English when you learned about Coleridge's poem Rime Of the Ancient Mariner when an Albatross lands on a boat and the sailors think it helps to guide them out of Arctic waters they have accidentally wandered into, when one of the sailors, our narrator, kills the albatross, and then brings ruin and misfortune upon all the others because of his deed. So, why would Dead Men Tell No Tales open their primary, real trailer with a quote from a poem that most of the viewers don't remember, and probably didn't like when they did read it? Because the "tale" told of the albatross, for those who liked the poem and will be rewarded for it, is probably going to mirror the adventure of Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), whose name invokes a bird and, therefore, can be taken as the "zombie bird" we see in the opening scene; how? Sparrow is a "dead bird flying," so to speak, and just as the albatross brings death and misfortune to all the crew, so knowing Sparrow may bring the same ill winds to those who know him (Elizabeth Swann, who was swimming up on the beach, and Will Turner who has started growing the green sea fungus on his face, as well as Barbossa who has gone English and has his ship boarded by dead pirates who he can identify with having started the series out as dead). Our next trailer doesn't show us much new material, however, there is some:
You have probably noticed how Cipher (Charlize Theron) barely opens her mouth when she speaks, and seems to be keeping her eyes open as wide as they will go. Her wide open eyes are meant to invoke surveillance, and her "big brother" approach to getting things done. Her mouth barely moving is supposed to make her more stoic: the mouth symbolizes our appetites, and she doesn't want to appear to have any appetites, so she keeps her mouth closed (but she does have an appetite for something: have you noticed how "wide" she opens her mouth to kiss Dom? Also note how she "screams" "Fire!" in the trailer; the unnatural combination of both fire and ice in this scene suggests a Game Of Thrones connection, although, since I don't watch it, I wouldn't know what that would be).
Just to contextualize how important TransFormers: The Last Knight will be, Star Wars VIII took it's subtitle from the Michael Bay film: The Last Jedi. Bear in mind, please, that these films all went into production at least two years ago, so the world looked quite different two years ago then today. However, because of the election, I saw a figure that said, 42% of people in the US claimed the results harmed a close relationship (that is, liberals are taking the results out on family members). The broken bond between Optimus Prime and Bumblebee, and even the broken bond between Dom and his family, including Hobbs, in F & F 8, mirrors what is happening today. We have no idea what happens in these films yet, but they are highly conscious of what has been going on. On a lighter, but still serious note,...
Why does Baby Groot say only, "I am Groot?" Because, ultimately, whenever you or I say anything, we say it from the unique singlurlar perspective that we are: for example, you know that when I write, "For at least two reasons," I am going to go into a long, verbose explanation that probably no one really cares about, but none of that information is included in the phrase, "For at least two reasons," but you know that's what I mean when I write that. There are things you and your family/friends say that no one else understands except you (maybe you throw favorite movie lines around each other) and so, when we hear, "I am Groot," it means at least two things. First, the film cares about individuality, even hyper-individuality (what kind of being is Groot, anyway?) and second, that we will have to decode and interpret that which the film communicates, just as Rocket Raccoon interprets what Groot says. Even Rocket's interpretations, though, have to be interpreted, and we have to fill in the spaces ("Except he didn't use 'frick'in'").
Earlier this week, a false synopsis was released about Logan, and several film sites publishing the story had to retract; not like it made headline news anywhere, but it did lead to quite a bit of confusion. The scene where X-23, the little girl who is most likely--but not definitely--Wolverine's own daughter is running with other children is important because we know that all the other mutants who were around after Days Of Future Past have died (somehow) and the only mutants left are children like X-23, and Professor X is trying to get to them and Logan is trying to help Professor X to help them (I think, but this might still be some of the 'fake news" about the film floating around). Whereas hyper-individuality is emphasized in Guardians Of the Galaxy, being "like" others (and not just the "like" of a Facebook post) is being emphasized in Logan; why? Community. Individuality and community are both important and both are good. You may be aware that, this being the pre-weekend to Valentine's Day, Fifty Shades Darker, the pornographic sequel to the pornographic Fifty Shades of Gray opens, and John Wick 2 opens with it:
If you plan on seeing John Wick 2 this weekend--and I certainly do--get your tickets in advance because they are going to go super fast. Why, when Wick replies, "Rough night," does he have all those marks on his face? The face is the seat of our identity, so that his face has been marked means that John Wick is "losing face" and finding it difficult to live up to his reputation against Ares (Ruby Rose). Opening February 17 is a film I am seriously looking forward to, The Cure For Wellness:
There is just a ton to write about this, and I am tempted to write it all, but then,... I won't have much motivation to get the post up. I will point out these two things, however: first, the studio spent a lot of money to advertise this film during Super Bowl, so they obviously think it's good and they want to make sure people get to see it; second, the hospital this film takes place in (it's not in the script that it's this way, it just happened to work out this way) is the same hospital where Adolf Hitler recovered from his injuries after World War I. Do I need to say much more? Well, there always has to be a stinker in the bunch, doesn't there? And of course, Ryan Reynolds is in it, because that's what he does.
You remember that great Ridley Scott film, The Martian, where Matt Damon's character battled to stay alive on Mars to get back home, and how uplifting and self-affirming that was, and how proud that the crew saved him and then there were all those young astronauts ready to go and bravely face the same possible dangers he went through? Yea, well, Life is about killing The Martian, and wants totally to undermine what was accomplished by that film, because, if we think we are strong enough and smart enough and determined enough to survive those conditions, and life is worth living for, then we are a menace to earth, and the socialists want to eradicate us, because nothing is worth suffering for. We just all need to lost and die. Speaking of "losing," see if you can spot the socialist-Obama era mentality in this short clip:
The school has a tradition of losing, just like Obama and the socialists, and just unlike Trump and the capitalists. Now, I have to say, Fist Fight seems to really be confusing the two sides, but I'm not surprised because that "disinformation" is important to confuse people what they believe and who stands for the values they think they hold. So now that that is perfectly clear,....
Eat Your Art Out,
The Fine Art Diner