Sunday, February 12, 2017

plato's cave three (being a film journal)

jim jarmusch - paterson - 2016

went to the sunshine cinema with my lovely wife a couple of weeks ago to see the new jim jarmusch film, which has the title of paterson; both the hero's name and the town in which he lives. this double naming is quite a lovely bit i believe.

it was really a pleasant film to watch from beginning to end, with maybe the exception of a few moments with bored behavior from the character's better half.  vaguely jeanne dielmanesque in structure - finding the character waking up and looking at his watch (no portable telephone, as he does not find a need for them except later in the film to borrow someones for a slight emergency), kissing his women, and going about his day. toward the end of each day he goes to the pub, adding this bit of pleasure whilst he walks the dog named nellie as played by marvin. the moments in the pub (and getting there) where highlights, with moments of unrequited love, violence, angry wives, and chess happening within.

here and there paterson writes a poem. maybe walser in nature slightly as he wakes to him every morning. the poems are interesting as they are as simple as they are heavy. this quality is accentuated by the way the poems are read - with the hero's words layered slightly sonically (or at least i heard them that way) and happening quite slowly and with intermissions that can be seconds or minutes.

the imaginary poems of masatoshi nagase's character "japanese poet" are evocative and sublime, and poems i would very much love to read. as are rod padgett's for the film :

when you’re a child
you learn
there are three dimensions:
height, width, and a shoebox.
then later you hear
there’s a fourth dimension:
then some say
there can be five, six, seven…

i knock off work,
have a beer
at the bar.
i look down at the glass
and feel glad.

ron padgett

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