Saturday, January 08, 2005

"I Think It Can Hear You, Ray"

My sister and I went down to NYC and saw Bill Murray interviewed by Lynn Hirschberg. It was at a CUNY auditorium, and we had front row seats, thanks to a Xmas present from our mom.

He also took some questions. It was great. He's hilarious just to look at. Here's some quotes I remember:

"If you can write, you must write. If you can do comedy, you must do comedy."

That was in reference to doing what you do best, instead of trying to get some "serious" job. Nice. I've been inspired by the master directly.

"Comedy is king."

There he was saying that while dramas win awards, his favorite movies are comedies. Another one I agree with. I hate feeling ashamed that I'd rather watch What About Bob? than some serious or artsy movie. Not that those types of movie can't be good, too. But if I were stranded on a desert island, I'd hope to get rescued so I could make a comedy about my experience.

About The Life Aquatic, he said, essentially, that he thinks it's an amazing movie, and that it will take ten or fifteen years before it's fully appreciated. He gave it some really high praise, and also noted that it took him until the third time he saw it to realize how great it was. That's a good sign for the two people I know who've only seen it once, and weren't as into it as they were the previous Wes Anderson movies. (Whereas I've stubbornly put it at number one of all time where it will be staying, I predict, until the next Wes Anderson movie comes out. Or the nexxt Christopher Guest movie.) Murray also said that he likes Anderson a lot, he works hard, and is a nice guy, too.

He basically gave a summary of his life, and his career, too. The interviewer wasn't that good, but we all knew it was the Murray show, so she didn't even have to be there.

I've noticed with Q & A's, of the audience members who ask questions, there's always one really intelligent person, one "retarded/psycho/#1 fan/all of the above"-type person, and a whole bunch of people asking really thought-, point-, and meaningless questions, who seem to really not know the answer, even though all of us quiet people do. Either that, or they ask the celebrity their opinion on a broad subject. In fact, Murray ripped the interviewer herself tonight for something like that. She asked him, "Is it true that you think women are funnier than men?" Bill replied, "That's like asking, [with mock enthusiasm,] 'Which do you like better, DAY...or NIGHT??'" Then he rolled his eyes.

In college, my friends and I had a routine that we kept up for several years. Every weekend we'd go down to the rental store and pick out two movies: one artsy/drama/scary/etc type movie, and one comedy. The genre of the first movie varied, depending on how we were feeling at the time, but the second movie was always a comedy.

And personally, I thought that was a very nice setup. Movies are culture, so one always ought to be expanding one's horizons. But movies are entertainment too.

Or in other words, all work and no play, etc.

Loved "The Life Aquatic." Very nice film, lots of great symbolism, believable storyline. And the visuals: good solid feel. And the movie has an excellent moral too, as many good stories do, but it makes its point without any preaching or lecturing. Which, IMO, is the definition of art. Man, I hate nothing more than overkill.

And the sense of humor was perfect for me, too. I like it dry ...

Anway, I can't say "The Life Aquatic" is my all-time favorite, but it is now officially on My List. Every time I see a movie that I think would be worthy of a second viewing (or third, or more), I add it to The List. It's not an Oscar, but I flatter myself by thinking I have pretty good taste, so it's a high compliment by my standards.

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Location: Rhode Island, United States