Thursday, February 23, 2012

Scatterbrained III: The Repeating Artist

 *Word of warning: Scatterbrained posts come forth out of an overcaffeinated sensation and thus are written hastily without regard for the reader's ability to follow my train of thought. This train is not really for riding, you see. It's more of a type of train that you just look at from afar and go, "Oh yeah. I kinda like trains." That's all that they're good for, when push comes to shove. You know this to be true. 

Stephen King once said to me, through the confines of his old devil, Hell is repetition.

Why is it that artists in general, and I wag my finger particularly at painters here, tend to repeat the same work over and over again. Why paint so many flowers? Didn't you ever imagine what a dragon might look like, Vincent? How many damnable nonrepresentative scattered-inkblots could you handle, Jackson? Is that why you came to the end that you did? -- because you couldn't get past it? And Woody, must you always have your women momentarily swoon all over your neurotic protagonist? How many times must we cover these bases?

Maybe there is a magic here I am missing. By examining relatively similar motifs, perhaps the artist is exploiting that small hue that stands distinct in each case. Maybe it is a practice of the science of studying outliers.

If there is wisdom here, I should find and categorize my personal motif and exploit that sad sucker for every inch of its wretched value. We are men, are we not? We are built for exploitation!

It's really quite simple. I don't have to examine long at all.

It's Kubrick that nailed it on the head, even if that wasn't his intention. I'll use him and exploit the snot out of the remainder of his soul. It's the black monolith. Remember it? It stood as our ominous constant in 2001: A Space Odyssey. At every evolutionary turn, there existed this signpost of terrifying adventure. That where we go, there we find it. The Black Monolith.

I remain fixated on God as the source of revelation. This is my place of eternal catharsis. This is the last and the first frontier; the alpha and omega of all treks. All my stories I conceive inevitably push somewhere towards that stalwart.

It's something akin to:
You're traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's the signpost up ahead - your next stop, The Black Monolith!

Dudududuu-dudududuu-duuuuuuuu! Black Monolith for the win!

But it ain't all that simple. Hobbitsies are tricksies, they are, they are. 

Too much of this new-truth serum pressing in on us from all sides is too much. Take, for instance, for example, e.g. i.e. etc. lol loling lolingly lmfao, this trippy trailer for Beyond the Black Rainbow. It's too much weird. It promises a new experience, a new rationale, a new epoch of consciousness. But more than likely it will fall into a category of 'too weird to get' films. The problem with the 'too weirds' is that you never end up investing personally in these plights, because it is too far removed from any substance of our reality. Sadly, weirdness tends to equal illogic and nonplotting. Those are cardinal sins of storytelling, they are, they are.

The Black Monolith is just a little bit weird. It's not toooo weird. Granted, the end of 2001 is batshit crazy, but let's happily sidestep that little bit of madness, shall we?

The point is -- yes, of course there is a point -- that a little bit of trans-truthfulness goes a long way.

I don't want to be a plagiarist, so let's use something else besides the Black Monolith to make our point...

Hmmm..... what to use, what to use.

Let's go with a singing minotaur. Everybody knows that minotaurs went extinct decades ago, so for them to show up in a film is bizarre. It's a trans-truthfulness, it is, it is.

Trans-truthfulness, that's a mouthful. Let's shorten it a bit. How about transfulness? Transtruth? No, no... I got it... Truthotaur!

Okay, let's see the genre of Truthotaur in action! Here's a few films that we can exploit to expose the deeper truth that of course we are all zestfully seeking with much, much obsession.

Gone with the Wind: Rhett leaves Atlanta for that real-time South he once knew. And as he heads out the door, we see the shadow of a minotaur dancing in the twilight, singing to the heavens, "Give me that old-time religion!" Bam. Truthotaur sneak!

Lawrence of Arabia: In that weird scene of torture and other unknowns, right before those secret atrocities are committed unto T.E. Lawrence, a minotaur enters the screen whistling a tune to "Singin' in the Rain". Bam. Truthotaur attack!

A Man for All Seasons: As Sir Thomas More puts his head down, waiting for the executioner to cut his head off, we see that there is another prisoner also awaiting the same end: a minotaur! More looks to his neighbor and says to him matter-of-factly, "I'll see you in paradise." They chop More's head off. The executioner raises his ax a second time, and we see the minotaur shed a tear and hum the tune "God save the king". Blam. Truthotaur torrent!

Hannibal: Whilst Hannibal is serving brain to his hosts, sitting at the other end of the dinner table is a minotaur. None of the characters acknowledge the beast's presence, but the creature sings quietly under his breath, "I'm in heaven, I'm in heaven." Over and over and over and over again. Slam. Flawless Truthotaur victory!

Master and Commander: When Commander Aubrey realizes that he in fact did not catch the commander of this french nemesis boat, Acheron, we suddenly get a close-up of the boat's real commander steering the ship: a minotaur! Over the seas we hear his faint voice leak out, "Yo-ho, yo-ho, a pirate's life for me." Fade out. End movie. Ka-cha. Truthotaur kill!

Forrest Gump: One of Forrest's ping-pong competitors is a minotuar! While they lob that little ball back and forth, the minotaur sadly raps solemn the Beatles hit, "Yesterday". We later see the same minotaur making friendly in the background at Forrest and Jenny's wedding.

See! It's so easy.

Trans-truthfulness, aka Truthotaur, is a violently pivotal incoming genre of media. Embrace it! Embrace the repetition. Maybe there's a little piece of heaven yet to be found in this hell.


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