Slipping in and out of the weekend. The tray table shudders as we head north on Amtrak, making the large water and the coffee jump towards the edge. I spent over twenty dollars on an ill-fashioned dinner in Penn Station: Carrot-beet-apple-ginger juice, two piece meal of Kentucky fried chicken with green beans that tasted like they had been boiled in the squeezings of a ham, served with resentment, a grande decaf soy latte from starbucks and with it a slice of reduced fat banana bread which, after a third of it was eaten, was deemed too sugary. As yet uneaten is a no dairy no wheat cookie from the same place as the juice. All of it prepared carelessly, ordered greedily and then eaten sadly.
An odd way to finish out the weekend, since up to that point it had been peaceful and pleasant. I experienced palpable joy when I entered my apartment and saw its hard won space and order. For the first time in quite a while the return home was not a return into anxiety. When I left, I actually spent a while tidying up, in hopes of duplicating the feeling.
Last night I went with thornyc and bad_faggot to see Cruising a film that never ceases to surprise. This time around it was the blankness of the acting. And the paucity of the script. Pacino stares around, attempting to inject some distress into what seems to mostly be haunted befuddlement. Karen Allen has nothing to do, and it is mostly left to Paul Sorvino to keep the plot points moving. But of course all this is beside the point, since the film is really a fantasia on sex in a police state, where bodies are reduced to parts, codes of conduct reduced to outfits and every dwelling is grimy, smudged, damp. People mostly look past each other, unless they are cruising each other. And then when they have sex they barely look at each other. There is a thankless bit of acting by the two drag queen hustlers in the beginning. It’s easy to take the movie to task for not getting it right about gay life (whatever that is), but the films real effect is that of having someone tell you a story only to have their narration turn into a long masturbatory fantasy, complete with a hasty and furtive mopping up of the mess once they come to their senses. I pray for a dvd, preferably one that might provide a look at of all the cut stuff. Where is Criterion when you need them? Would make a good double bill with Joe Gage’s closed set. The people who really should have protested are the cops, who are depicted as amoral sociopaths, who treat homosexuals like meat either to be fucked, scorned, bullied or ignored at will. At another point this weekend The Wiz was on TV, directed by Sidney Lumet and it is a similarly bewildering failure. I can’t help thinking that he and Freidkin should have exchanged projects.
And now I ponder the fact that it’s already 9:45. Faithful readers will realize that I’m slipping from my schedule.