Monday, July 2, 2007

The Art of Anti-Capitalist Mythology.

Would you? Peace,-=Tim

i don't have the ability to watch this film cuz i only get internet at work and this kind of thing is blocked, but, Tim synopsisized it for me and i thought about it and now i am going to rant off a useless and misinformed diatribe about it, cuz that's what i do.

So, if i'm correct, the film is a stick man bored with his rote life discovers a rip in the space time continuum (or somesuch) and after thinking about it, escapes through it.

This is the kind of mawksih idealism and romanticization of impracticality that frustrates the hell out of me. This dreamy escapism plays into the capitalist power structure and re-affirms the exact rote, dull-as-fuck daily life that it APPEARS to be rejecting. THis film allows us to vicariously live out a fantastic escape from our daily lives, which has the ultimate psychological effect of helping us to stomach this mind-numbing boredom. There is no such thing as a rip in the space time continuum, there is no simple dream-like escape from life and all this film offers is a useless hypothetical. what i want is a practical guide. We dream about this kind of thing happening because that way we don't have to do the work necessary to make it (or something even better) happen in reality.
It's also telling that the escape is found when dude leaves his wife in bed, and sneaks into the bathroom to escape, because this impulse, this desire for some fairy-tale is typically caught up in bullshit ideal romance and sexual fantasy. which leads to the kind of useless and destructive infidelities where person 1 (in commited relationship) meets person 2 (single, fun-loving and exciting) and idealizes, structures some romantic notion for person 2 and then cheats on person 3 (his/her mate) but then, once the fantasy has been consummated, person 1 rejects person 2, (the ideal was not acheived) and crawls back to person 3, begging for forgiveness or continuing to deceive them.
Why can't we have fullfilling relationships from the start? Because this type of art is holding up some bullshit romantic ideal and making us all think "it's not good enough if it's not magical" if that's how we're going to live our lives, then nothing will ever be good enough, because there is no magic, magic by definition does not exist. We will always be dissatisfied, over-medicated consumers chasing a carrot that does not exist.
American Beauty explodes the myth this type of film is perpetuating, by playing it through to the next step, the morning after, and letting us see where following your dreams after you've already committed yourself to an unsatisfactory life gets you. Made in the Mouth (well, More of Less About Blankets, anyway) lays out a groundwork, or describes the mental state of someone who is attempting to get his life structured correctly from the outset so he doesn't HAVE to dream about some bullshit fantasy to get though the day. His life is far from ideal, but he takes hold of what he can have and (this is the important part) transforms that into something of value himself, instead of reaching and grabbing for something that does not and cannot exist. No one is going to hand you your life, you've gotta fight for it, you've gotta make intentional choices, commit to your goals, be determined, find what you want out of life and do the daily dirty work necessary to push yourself to that goal.

on that note, i feel asleep on my draft of UC after an hour and a half of writing, failed my quota for this week, goddamn it.


Camplin said...

Romanic art helped justify movements like the French Revolution, Nazi Germany, and Soviet Union. Where many were killed to meet the romanic ideal of the few.

R. Winsome said...

Wow, that's true, and REALLY interesting. Because, i mean, what i'm saying is that romantic art makes for no revolution (because it removes the revolutionary impulse vacariously through the art), and what you're saying is it makes for a bad stupid needlessly violent revolution (where the dream ideal is imposed on a reality it does not conform to).

So, then, Idealism is two different kinds of dead end. This morning i was feeling really mindlessly happy and thinking about dead birds floating in paper boats and remembered a public art tea party that i threw for the city back when i was an idealist. Then i became momentarily sad, because who i was then, i'd hate who i am now. Who i was then was such a dreamer that i didn't realize how bitter my dreams were making me. Now i'm bitter and cynical on the outside, but totally optimistic on the inside. Once i realized that (a few moments later) i was no longer sad.