Tuesday, March 01, 2005

I guess I just don't get it... (Utena re-revisited)

Subject: Noir
So I'm still trying to work my way through "Revolutionary Girl: Utena". Disc 1 was "a bit of a dissapointment", disc 2 "was just too ridiculous". Okay, I thought the movie was "hot". *Ahem*.

Disc 3, well, it wasn't as ridiculous... excepting the "cowbell" episode... but I don't think I'm particularly getting it. I mean, I "get it", in that I understand that there's all sorts of symbolism being thrown at me and there are layers of meaning and whatnot behind everything, but I'm really not grasping any of it. Well, not any significant amount of it for me to be able to grab hold of and ride through to the conclusion.

I think this show wants me to think too much up-front. I think I tend to prefer to first enjoy "thinking" shows and movies -- as opposed to fun, casual "popcorn" watching -- in a state we called in film school the "suspension of disbelief". That's the state of mind where you're sucked into the universe being presented on the screen -- it's rules become your reality for that moment even if it's totally fiction and maybe even impossible. After I get through it that way, then I'm drawn even deeper into the experience and start deconstructing it and getting at the layers beneath. It's kind of like letting my right brain absorb it all first so my left brain can parse it and explain it afterwards.

"Utena", for some reason, isn't letting me cross over into that state at all. It wants left-brain attention first. Even though it's totally laden with surrealist symbolism which is supposed to be all kinds of right-brain stimulus. Or maybe I'm just dense and not all that well-read.

There's a lot more episodes to go, so I'll keep trying. And yeah, probably I'll keep complaining. But hey, at least it's got me writing more than once a week!

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