Posted by: steveonfilm | January 8, 2011

Being Productive When You’re Not Productive

Head colds are a funny thing. You feel like crap. You’re very much “sick,” but your brain is perfectly functioning. It’s not like the flu where your whole body feels like death, and your mind sits in a kind of haze for a few days. No… when you have a cold you could do stuff, if it didn’t involve much moving. If somehow the activity only involved using your brain…

A few things meet those requirements: reading, watching movies, playing video games, and writing. I’ve done all four over the course of the last three days.

Two Christmases ago I got two Cormac McCarthy books: “No County For Old Men” and “The Road.” Having seen the Coen’s movie version of No Country, I attacked that one first, reading it while I was on a cruise this summer. I just now for around to opening up The Road. So far so good. I just love McCarthy’s writing style.

Speaking of “No Country For Old Men”… the blu-ray I ordered cam in the mail. I popped that sucker in the Playstation within ten minutes of it’s arrival and watched the whole thing again. I just love this movie. It was my favorite Western until I saw “True Grit.” If you don’t have this on blu-ray, do yourself a favor and get it. It just looks stunning. Blu-rays for “The Professional” and “The Usual Suspects” also arrived… I’ll be hitting those up tomorrow.

On the video game front I dove into Metroid Prime Trilogy on the Wii. I somehow managed to find this for sixty bucks online a few weeks ago. It goes for close to a hundred on E-bay. I’ve played all three Metroid Primes, and beaten all but the second one… but I thought it’d be nice to pick this up and give all three a go with the Wii’s motion controls. I’ve also killed a lot of people playing Black Ops. But those sessions are just 30-40 minutes here and there.

I sent off an outline to Michael for “The Prey” about a week ago. It was one “take” on how to tell the story. But while I was going through it, I got another idea for a different “take” on the story. Something that I think stood strong enough on it’s own that it could work as a screenplay. I started to jot those ideas down, and before I knew it I was half way through an outline. I completed the thing a little earlier today and sent that over to Michael as well. Both of these are firmly in the “I hope you don’t hate them” category, but I guess time will tell on that.

All in all… those activities involved me moving about ten feet, the span between the couch and the TV. I don’t plan on changing this situation in the new future either. Until I’m over this cold I’m couch surfing. Move movies, writing, games, and reading to come.

Until next time, keep writing!
-Steve

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Responses

  1. On McCarthy:

    I often dislike discussing his books (or in the case of No Country) the movies made upon them.

    My feeling is that most people just write them off as ‘heartless, violent, and depressing’: which I guess to a certain degree I could agree that they are.

    But why is that… so bad? Does every piece of fiction have to be happy, have to wrap things up in neat little bows? Have overly drawn out dialogue using flourishes of language?

    I dislike arguing people about ‘like / dislike’ over fiction because in many cases taste is taste: debating why I think the flavor of grape is superior over the taste of an apple, and trying to say that said opinion is ‘correct’ is the sort of thing I try to avoid.

    However when presented with questions like “Why is it even called No Country for Old Men? I mean it was just a violent, nasty movie with…” — my immediate reaction is to grab by the lapels and shake said person. “You just asked a question and gave the answer to it in the same sentence!”

    A film like Ninja Assassin can have all sorts of blood and gore — a movie can be like the Expendables and revel in all sorts of giant explosions. And I love that.

    But for true brutality, for the sort of “real” crushing pressure and the despair it can bring: McCarthy wields a paintbrush of the most startlingly clear kind.

    That’s just my opinion. 😉

    • EVERYTHING is subjective. Some people won’t like his work. Fortunately, I’m NOT one of those people. I find the type of people who don’t like his books, or the movies made from them, typically LOVE Reese Witherspoon movies. McCarthy doesn’t write violence for violence sake. When something happens it’s quick, brutal, and significant to the story. That’s why it’s awesome.


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