I tried SO hard to like this movie

With the exception of the films of Coleman Francis, I’m willing to watch just about anything , and usually I’ll find something worth liking about them — whether it’s the fact that Hugh Jackman is nearly always entertaining, or a wacky title sequence. There’s always something. Did I forget to mention that I usually find something worth liking? I know that there are movies that everyone else is supposed to like, and then there are films that only certain people are supposed to like ( supposedly the difference is that everyone else watches “movies” and only certain people watch films or worse yet, the cinema). So I was watching this movie called Pi. It’s directed (and written, I think), by Darren Aronofsky, who is currently enjoying some fame for his Oscar nominated movie The Wrestler. Since I had already seen his other movie, the heart-warming Requiem for a Dream, I decided that I must see more films by this guy! And that was Pi. I guess, for those who haven’t seen it, Pi is about this dude who’s really good at math who decides that he wants to figure out the math behind the stock market. Eventually, as all smart math guys do, he goes a little nuts, and ends up drilling himself in the head. Really, that’s the plot. I thought that, since I’m into philosophy n’ all, that I would like it. Two reasons: 1) it’s in black and white (and black and white automatically means quality), and 2) because it looked like a movie that people who are into philosophy would like. There’s a list, you know. There really is. It’s a list of things that philosophy people are supposed to be “into”. We’re supposed to like Woody Allen movies (except for Antz that’s a no-go for me), Monty Python flicks ( you’re supposed to be able to recite dialogue from these), Coen Brothers movies, jazz music, and “fair trade” coffee. I also think that any movie written by Steve Martin (except for The Jerk) is supposed to be somewhere on that list. They’re supposed to be stuff that are infused with all sorts of deep meaning and philosophic subtexts. Which is why pedestrian level philosophers like Star Trek. In Gene Roddenberry’s universe there isno such thing as subtlety. It’s all whack you over the head with a crowbar — and the point of philosophy is that not everyone gets this stuff. Which, I guess is where the philosophic rubber hits the road. At least that’s what the assholes believe, anyway. But the cold, harsh reality is, is that movies like Pi are damned hard to watch. It’s not that I didn’t get it, either. Oh I got it. Look, Being John Malkovich isn’t so much difficult to understand than it is hard to pay attention to if you have anything resembling a sense of boredom. And by the way, would Catherine Keener please stop playing the smart-talking, intellectually superior ( to you), chick?!? The plain truth is, is that Super Troopers is not only more entertaining than most “philosophic” movies — but it also probably is philosophically better for you. I swear that there is a difference between a movie that is just on its own smart (like the social commentary in the original Night of the Living Dead), and a movie that comes off like it is some sort of philosophy lesson (like Vanilla Sky). I’m not going to say exactly where I think this movie fits,but even now I keep thinking that I really should have liked Pi. While I’m writing this, I’m really thinking, wondering if there actually is some sort of philosopher profile that, once I join the ranks of THEM, I will automatically assume? Are there traits (or qualities, if that’s the way you roll) that I must necessarily have as a philosopher? If so what are they? A tendency to rattle on about things that no one else cares about? The ability to talk for ten straight minutes without ever answering the question that I was asked? Will I lose my ability to talk to normal people?!?!? Of course, half of what I’m saying is in jest (well, except for the not liking the movie Pi no matter how hard I’ve tried to). But, I think that there’s something more going on than this all being about a matter of taste. Without going into some sort of really overcomplicated postmodern take on high and low culture, there is a perception that there are things that everybody else likes and other things that only 0ther people like. That’s kind of messed up.

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