people to tell us?
crazy, or funny, absurd
Let’s get this straight right off the bat.
I like watching, listening to Fran Leibowitz.
I enjoy her pithy comments very much.
Consider this recent comment on travel.
“As far as wanting to go places, I can’t believe people do it for fun. When I’m in airports, and I see people going on vacations, I think, ‘How horrible could your life be? How bad is your regular life, that you think, you know what would be fun? Let’s get the kids, go to the airport, with thousands of pieces of luggage, stand in these lines, be yelled at by a bunch of morons, leave late, be squished all together – and this is better than our actual life.‘”
Ms. Leibowitz recently made a six part 2021 Netflix docuseries Pretend It’s a City where she gets to complain about everything and its fun.
It was created and directed by Martin Scorsese.
Wikipedia says that Mr. Scorsese is “One of the major figures of the New Hollywood era, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential directors in film history.”
I have to say I do not have the background to comment on that comment but if I am making a comment just for myself, I would say well, maybe, not so much.
I mean he is not John Huston is he?
As for influence on film, I mean I see a mobster flic and say ‘oh yes, that Martin feller.’
But I see deep focus shots, low angle shots, tracking shots, I say, “Oh Yes, Gregg Toland!”
But then Mr. Toland was a cinematographer so maybe I am mixing apples and oranges.
Back in the early 90’s there was a TV show called Northern Exposure.
While it was supposed to be about the life a New York City type trying to exist in Alaska it was really a vehicle for the two creators, Joshua Brand and John Falsey, to comment on le monde informatique.
One of the many re-occurring themes was a character in the show who wanted to make movies.
In expanding this theme it was hinted that Woody Allen’s Grand Mother lived in the town and spent her days watching Avant Garde films (Ingmar Bergman’s 1957 film The Seventh Seal) in the local movie house.
In one episode movie making wannabe character, Ed was his name, approached the lady and said, “Grandma Woody how does Woody do it? What is his secret to success?”
Grandma Woody responds, “Woody? My Woody? He gets an idea, he writes it down, and he films it – again… and again and again.”
Grandma Woody’s only other reported quote is, “All we are, basically, are monkeys with car keys.”
But that comment, “Again and again and again” pretty summed up Mr. Allen’s career for me.
If you look at the list of Martin Scorsese movies its almost the same thing.
Mr. Scorsese got his man alone idea, he wrote it down, and he films it – again and again and again.
But that is neither here nor there.
What is here and there and that I was reading this morning an article about the making of that 2021 Netflix docuseries Pretend It’s a City and the writer quoted Mr. Scorsese.
The writer quoted Mr. Scorsese on Fran Lebowitz.
Full disclosure, Lebowitz and Scorsese are great friends, just ask them, they well tell you.
You bet, they will tell you.
Mr. Scorsese said, or was quoted as saying, “I admire her clarity and unequivocal stances.”
Mr. Scorsese went on, “We need people to tell us: this is crazy, this is absurd, this is ironic, this is funny, this is tragic.“
My brain stopped.
My brain stopped as sure as if it were a freight train hitting a concrete barrier.
Not the stopped of a runaway truck turning onto a runaway truck ramp and slowing to stop in soft sand.
Stopped dead stopped.
And like parts of that train hitting the barrier, little bits and pieces of something dribbled out of my ears.
Again Mr. Scorsese said, “We need people to tell us: this is crazy, this is absurd, this is ironic, this is funny, this is tragic.”
We need people to tell us.
This is crazy.
This is absurd.
This is ironic.
This is funny.
This is tragic.
We need people to tell us?
Now that is crazy.
That is absurd.
That is ironic.
That is also funny.
That is also very much tragic.
We are in worse shape than I ever imagined.