Wow Ten! We’ve come so far! And yet much like the first instalment, this latest Filmblogging is primed to be littered with self serving empathy and bitterness. (Side note: having litter and bitter in the same sentence makes me want to reignite my rap career – “I’m gonna litter this with bitterness, all I want is to be on the “Most Hits on Twitter” list” – yeh, uh-huh, what (rapping was my first failed writing based career path)). But back to the whinge: You know it wouldn’t matter how much effort or creativity went into this filmblog cos I could literally increase the hits ten-fold by simply putting a picture of Batman and “Dark Knight” in the title. They say “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” and I’m going to assum the “’em” are the people who don’t read my blog. I can’t join them in not reading this blog because I actually enjoy it and they can’t beat me cos I still keep typing even when it feels like I’m writing to a brick wall. But what I can do is try get the people to join me! That is I am offering people the chance to write for Filmblogging! That’s right folks, we are branching out, franchising; you want to take a chance at some advanced writing? If so, let me know – but no rapping yo, it doesn’t really work when you’re transcribing. But seriously let me know if you want in…
I caught this on SBS one night when I was too lazy to make a choice about what movie to put in the DVD player. Other than that I had no intention of seeing it. It’s funny how I proclaim a bunch of liberal values and equality but when I see a movie about a tranny and its gay kid my bigotry suddenly reigns supreme. No it’s not that bad, but I did seem to make an unconscious choice not to see the movie. Surely when I saw Felicity Huffman pushing this movie on Letterman some years back there must have been some residual homosexuality encouraging me to pass it by.
But the funny thing about it is that while the transvestite gag may be the hook, underneath it is a solid little indie road tripper. Just replace divorced and depressed dad with desperate to be a woman dad; and replace quirky hip teenager with misguided, sexually ambiguous teenager, and there you go! All you have to do is visit the wack job family history on the way, hold out on the crisis til the end of Act 2 and the film basically writes itself.
His mum! Hahahahaha! Get it? Cos his mum is fat and it asks what’s eating him! I clever. Alright I don’t know if I’ll have too much to say about this one. I just watched it again after 10 or 15 years and found it very enjoyable. It is pretty much the perfect film – it couldn’t do anything else to be better. I still wouldn’t say it is 5 stars but it is perfect (if that makes sense). I think we’ve all seen it so we all know that it is fun, funny, moving, original, etc. There is also a neat bit of symmetry in Gilbert’s demise and the deterioration of his house.
The film has that fading small town vibe that feels so nice and warm to a lifelong suburban boy like myself. I often wonder if I could survive in the small towns- you get to know everyone, lose touch with big city speeds, so much less choice in everything but maybe a much greater identity. I still think I’d like to bail if I was a kid; turn alcoholic as a man. Maybe one day.
I don’t have much else to report for now but this gig is only 600 words long so I think I’ll close it off with a rap (we all knew this is how it would end anyway): What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? Is it the house, the real estate? Is it the town, can his still escape? Or is it the fat mum crushing her children’s fate?
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