I’m kicking off 2023 by trying to watch and review one movie every day for the first 90 days, all of which will be 90 minutes or less.
Title: The Unbelievable Truth Release Date: May 15, 1989 Director: Hal Hartley Production Company: Possible Films | Action Features Summary/Review:
Audry Hugo (Adrienne Shelly) is a high school senior in the Long Island suburbs who has embraced a fatalistic viewpoint that the world will soon be destroyed by nuclear annihilation. Josh Hutton (Robert Burke) is a car mechanic (often mistaken for a priest) who returns to his home town after serving time in prison for manslaughter who finds work in the garage owned by Audry’s chauvinistic father Vic (Christopher Cooke). Can Audry and Josh find love?
That’s the putative plot of the movie, but director Hal Hartley seems less interested in plot and more in slice of life vignettes of everyday people in sometimes improbable situation. The world melodrama may sound like a dig, but the stiff acting and inconsistent characterization seem to be a feature rather than a bug of this movie. The style of this movie feels oddly like Twin Peaks without a supernatural element (but this came out before Twin Peaks, so maybe it’s like Blue Velvet without the gruesome violence?). At any rate, this is a fun, definitively 80s take on the art house flick.
I will turn 50 in November of this year, so my project for 2023 will be to listen to and review one album from each year of my life, 1973 to 2022, randomly selected.. The only qualification is that it has to be an album I’ve not reviewed previously.
NOTE: My next review on February 2, 2023 will focus on the year 1983. Help me pick which album from 1983 I will review by voting in the poll at the end of this post!
Album: Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven Artist: Godspeed You! Black Emperor Release Date: October 9, 2000 Label:Constellation | Kranky Favorite Tracks:
Like Antennas to Heaven…
Back in the 2000s I had a younger co-worker, who in retrospect wasn’t all that much younger since he was in his early 20s when I was in my late 20s. He listened to a lot of great music and recommended this album to me. Despite liking it I hadn’t listened to Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven in quite some time, which is a shame, because it’s better than I remember it.
Of course, it’s not an album one listens to casually. There are four pieces ranging from 18 to 23 minutes each that have their own movements like mini-symphonies. Godspeed You! Black Emperor is classified as a post-rock band and this album is a good example of ambient music and sound collage. It’s probably not the most accessible music, but I find it really beautiful and entrancing.