July 26, 2009

Things Howzerdo discussed with her husband after watching — on my recommendation — "My Dinner with Andre."

I opened this email from longtime commenter Howzerdo, and it's a list, and I'd just said I love lists.

-grittiness of pre-Giuliani NYC
-Wally is 36? Looks a decade older, awful hair
-both look so shabby for such a nice place
-nervous about who would pay?
-Poland story a snooze-fest, felt sorry for Wally, how long will this go on?
-The Matrix was maybe inspired by this?
-Andre's experiences reminder of Don Quixiote / mushrooms
-Andre’s name dropping seems pretentious (my husband didn't agree)
-Wally chews with his mouth open - yuck
-irony of mention about status v. them not paying attention to waiter
-irony of mention of people not “seeing,” when they are oblivious to restaurant environment
-sympathetic to Wally’s view, that why aren’t mundane daily tasks enough, even profound
-cold coffee from night before? Ugh
-dead fly / cockroach - ugh again
-did they actually eat?
-sympathetic to Ande’s view at same time, for the need to be “clear”
-violence, trivia, etc. of mass media, art even more overwhelming since ‘80s
-mid-life crisis of hip NYC folks
-totalitarian reference reaction to Reagan's election? (I didn't think so, film may have been in works earlier)
-so many Nazi and fascism references
-moral conflict (reminded me of Rosenthal’s comments about what is our responsibility to starving people across the world in Kitty Genovese documentary)
-in the taxi, Wally finally "sees" NYC streets at the end

Buy the DVD — here — and maybe you'll email me a list of what you talked about afterwards, perhaps over dinner in a restaurant, where you will be oblivious to your surroundings while talking about the importance of achieving heightened awareness.


Bissage said...

There is no heightened awareness so much as the blackness of death; for a man may love himself as God would have us over for dinner, spinning silently in space, like the circles that you find in the windmills of your mind.


AllenS said...

Howzerdo? Never heard of her.

howzerdo said...

I am a long time reader (since early 2004) but only occasional commenter.

Richard Lawrence Cohen said...

Great list from Howzerdo, and a small addendum: Andre Gregory comes from a wealthy background (hence his ability to gallivant around) and Wallace Shawn a privileged literary one (son of longtime New Yorker editor William Shawn). The upper classes don't notice waiters. Thanking the waiter is a sign of hopeless middle-classness. It means you and he belong to the same species.

Ann Althouse said...

@AllenS My Gmail shows 130 comments from Howzerdo (and "thousands" from you).

Gen. Sir Charles Napier said...

You should watch movies on Blu-ray... it's much better and you're rich (enough for Obama)!