Monthly Archives: April 2009

Sound Track As Narrator: Review of The Wrestler

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There is not a constant soundtrack in the movie The Wrestler (2008). There are a lot of times of silence. This lends to the documentary feel that the over-the-shoulder camera angles and shots of Mickey Rourke’s back add as well. However, when there is a song playing, it feels to be of great import. The songs are great transitions between scenes and indeed, between moments in The Wrestler’s life. Thus, I say the sound track is actually the narrator of the story. When the movie begins, there is a montage showing The Wrestler, Randy “The Ram,” at the height of his career. The song that is playing says “I want to be overrated,” foreshadowing Randy’s fall from fame, the hype can only last for so long. Forward to the present, and the song says “You don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone,” how Randy took his fame for granted and is now living in a trailer park, and sometimes his own van. I don’t want to give away everything that happens in the movie, so I’ll stop there with the examples, but here is the soundtrack listing:

  • “(Bang Your Head) Metal Health”( Quiet Riot)
  • “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)”(Cinderella)
  • “Round and Round” (Ratt (as Rat Attack))
  • “Balls To The Wall” (Accept)
  • “Sweet Child O’ Mine”( Guns N’ Roses)
  • “Animal Magnetism”(Scorpions)
  • “Jump”( Madonna)
  • “N2 Sumthin'”( Takbir Bashir)
  • “Don’t Walk Away”(Firehouse)
  • “Soundtrack to a War”( Rhino Bucket)
  • “Nice Guys Finish First”(Joey Johnson)
  • “8-bit Wrestler”(Joel Feinberg)
  • “Just Let Your Freak Out”(Deesha Sarai featuring Critical Child)
  • “Mirror”(Dead Family)
  • “No Bitterz”(Miss TK & The Revenge)
  • “Stuntin’ Like My Daddy” (Birdman and Lil’ Wayne)
  • “Dodge It”( Samsaya)
  • “Her Name Is Alice”(The Days The Nights)
  • “Hit Da Flo”( Trai’d)
  • “Dangerous”(Slaughter)
  • “Black Light”(Macon Greyson)
  • “I’m Insane”(Ratt)
  • “The Muscle”(Bone Crusher)
  • “Jerk It”(Thunderheist)
  • “Aloha Oa (Queen Lilluokalani)”( Robert Neary)
  • “Blowin’ Up” (Solomon)
  • “30 Stars” (Peter Walker)
  • “The Wrestler” (Bruce Springsteen)

Other small things worth noting about the movie– Mickey Rourke cries, really powerful; realistic relationships–complex, not black and white; by the end i found myself wanting the exact opposite outcomes to happen at the same time– wanting him not to do it vs wanting to see him succeed. And fade to black. Cue Bruce Springsteen…..

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Earth Day Photo: I <3 Trees

part of a tree root outside my pap john's

part of a tree root outside my pap john's

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Still Kicking

in response to Fumin— THERE WILL MOST DEFINITELY CONTINUE TO BE NEW CONTENT ON EXCELSIOR! lol. Didn’t mean to over react there.  I have been thinking a lot about Excelsior! lately, and the direction I would like it to take. I want each blog entry to be a complete article, thought out and formatted. I have been very busy with the new job and life in general, so I haven’t had the time to dedicate to Excelsior! that it requires for this direction. I am planning an article on philosopher Henri Bergson before too long (oooh, aaahh). Until then, I posted a new entry at PPC, my small biz blog, if you want to check it out.

Until then,

S

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Love Story Blog

This is MY blog, this is RADO’s blog, and now…. (drum roll please) THIS IS OUR BLOG TOGETHER! Ljubov: Love, Rado and Sarah

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The Police Siren Will Never Sound the Same Again

The Police Siren Will Never Sound the Same Again

for
Eric G. Kelly,
Stephen J. Mayhle
Paul J. Sciullo II

“You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” (Psalm 32:7-8)

Mourning doves harmonize
with police sirens plaintive cries
the dissonance of the dirge
belies the honor of the call
that went out and they came
thousands of police from near and far
police cars extend like a line of pilgrims
and passerbys are happy to be stuck in traffic
hats over hearts, the only incidence of mass patience
in a traffic jam.but then, how could there be road rage
when there has been too much rage
when the only thing left to do is to rage against
the dying of the light,
the spark of hope in the dove song,
the stillness of the salute
peace, the blue brotherhood,
for at least one day, encompasses
the oft forgot brotherhood of man
crowds gather not in anger or protest
not indifference and no matter who you are
no matter if the sound of a police car’s siren
normally fills your heart with dread,
today, it sounds like lamentation

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What Greeted Me This Morning, and, Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

You had to be there. That is not a good way to start out a description. Because it doesn’t tell you, my reader, anything. But it is also true. However, I will try to describe my experience this morning the best and can and explain what it meant to me.

I closed at the coffee shop last night. When I left, nothing was amiss. When I arrived this morning and unlocked the door, there was something noticeably out of place. Within a direct path from the door to the cash register there sat a pyramid of coffee cups, and atop it, a construction engineer action figure who looked like a cross between Bob the Builder and the Village People guy…

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That was definitely not there when I locked up last night. I thought it was strange, but kind of cool. The sun was rising higher and shining directly on the little man and and his mountain. As I began to think that I may be dreaming, or crazy, my co-worker arrived and he saw it too. He wanted to know if we could leave it up as installation art.Then he took a picture of it with his Poloroid camera. He wrote a caption that was a poem and a piece of art in and of itself.

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He came in the night/ built a mountain/ to watch the sun rise

I drew a sketch of the sculpture on receipt paper. The poloroid, the poem, the sketch…it got me thinking about a piece I had read a couple years ago, and written much longer ago, called “Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.” This is a work by German cultural theorist Walter Benjamin, written in 1936. In it, he discusses the distance between an original piece of art, or even a landscape, and it’s reproductions, and reproductions of reproductions. He says, “Even the most perfect reproduction of a work of art is lacking in one element: its presence in time and space, its unique existence at the place where it happens to be.” This applies with me trying to tell you about the experience as I had it when I first discovered the cup montain with the builder action figure. The “you had to be there” element. Benjamin also says that  a piece of artwork or even a landscape, “is jeopardized by reproduction when substantive duration ceases to matter.” He talks about the “aura” that an original thing has, and how it is depreciated the more it is reproduced. But what if it becomes something else? For example, the poloroid of the sculpture with my co-workers words scrawled on it. I think that is an original piece of art in and of itself. And  maybe it is true that a reproduction of anything is not the same as the original. But it is better than not getting to see it at all. Reproduction brought art to the masses, made it accessible. I could never afford a Rembrandt, but I can get a print of it to hang in my living room. And if I appreciate it and I enjoy it, then….maybe something is lost, but something is also gained. And sometimes with a transformation, like the poloroid, happens. Then doesn’t that have it’s own “aura” so to speak? You can read the whole text, translated, of Art in the Age of Mechanical reproduction here: http://www.marxists.org/reference/subject/philosophy/works/ge/benjamin.htm

Afterward: When the perpetrator of this sculpture arrived he said that he was so happy there was an action figure of a regular person he had to buy it. That it looked like someone’s Dad. Ah, the beauty in the ordinary.

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No Dumping

found on Federal St & Eloise St, Pittsburgh

found on Federal St & Eloise St, Pittsburgh

the young girl superimposed next to the warning not to dump had larger implications for me….like the problems we are dumping onto the next generation…

"Because we don't think about future generations, they will never forget us."  ~Henrik Tikkanen

"Because we don't think about future generations, they will never forget us." ~Henrik Tikkanen

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