Friday, July 3, 2009

Princess Mononoke AKA How To Freak Out A Movie Geek With Signs Of His Mortality

I’ve recently moved from LA and with it the best revival theater scene in the world. Still the local theater has eased the pain somewhat with its excellent Palm Wednesday program. Last Wednesday I went and saw Princess Mononoke. In the same theater I saw it the first time. Over ten years ago.

It was a little freaky.

Princess Mononoke remains of course a freaking tremendous film. Seeing it on the big screen only increases it’s grandeur. The film is amazing for the first hour and then slips into the transcendent gear starting with San’s raid on Iron Town. Scene after adreniline pumping, eerily beautiful, just plain awe inspiring scene pass by. It doesn’t break it’s streak, never gives you time to breath, every new sequence just casually seers itself into your brain. Princess Mononoke isn’t just a movie I like, it’s what I like about movies.

That’s how it felt when I was fourteen. That’s how I feel at twenty four.

But still it’s an odd feeling watching a movie that I was young enough to see on it’s first run playing in a revival circuit. Just another reminder that I’m getting older. And that even a hand grenade like Fight Club is going to be turning freaking ten years old this year.


Since most of my taste is so retro (a professor once described me, with a depressing amount of accuracy as being 23 going on 55) I haven’t really had to deal with the fact that the stuff I like is getting old. For the most part it already is old. But I can’t run from it forever. The stubborn fact is that there are actually things made in past the date 1980 that I enjoy. And they’re not getting any younger. Soon even my current taste will probably be retro.

But you know what. That’s fine. That’s the whole point. If you’re lucky your taste is good enough that the stuff you love lasts. And you can start looking backwards at it and still see it clearly.

And if you’re extremely lucky you can sit in the same theater where you first felt the slap of something great and feel the pleasant shiver as you realize in ten years you’ve changed.

But not too much.

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