Tuesday, May 16, 2006

x marks the spot, love

when asked which is my favorite movie, i might two months ago have replied the falls, but the eternal answer is and always will be Xanadu [aside: i've just noticed they're both directed by people with "green" in their name].

why xanadu? i could say that i have a fondness for bad movies (and it is, honestly, quite horrible) in the same way i prefer rainy days to sun. these things like bad films and cloudy skies come with lowered expectations and therefore they can never disappoint, but they can pleasantly surprise us.

there's much more to it than its promising absurdity; however, or lambada the forbidden dance would be my favorite film. i was four the first time i saw xanadu. i was easily awed by roller skating, disco, wardrobe changes, time travel, terry cloth short shorts and the dulcet tones of olivia newton-john.

Kira: Have you ever heard the expression "kissed by a muse"? Well, that's what I am. I'm a muse.
Sonny: Well, I'm glad someone's having a good time.
Kira: Oh, don't make jokes; I'm serious.

but i think, even as a four year old, i sensed the deeper truths underpinning all that glitz on wheels. when i was small, i connected most with two particular moments in the film. i noticed the first time i watched again as an adult, my heart still quickened during each of these scenes even though i wasn't processing them as particularly memorable or meaningful now that i'd attained reason. i've always assumed that visceral response was simply related to accessing those positive childhood memories. but now i wonder...

Sonny: I've come to take you out of here.
Kira: It can't be done. No one's ever taken anyone out of here. Not in the whole history of... the whole history!
Sonny: I'll make them let you go. Zeus! Zeus, you hear me?
Kira: Oh, God.

the two scenes of mention are the opening sequence when the muse sisters emerge, dancing resplendent with technicolor light trails, from a mural on a brick wall (electrifyingly set to ELO's "i'm alive") and the scene where a lovesick, distraught sonny skates himself hard into this same brick wall (to the tune of ELO's "the fall" - my favorite song of the soundtrack) to see if he can reconnect with his beloved muse. sonny miraculously travels through the wall and arrives on mount olympus (which is a nifty plane of tronesque laser lights and disembodied divine voices). in a nutshell, love--aided by Zeus and Hera's semantic inversion of "eternity" and "a moment"--conquers all.

i think in a land where time is meaningless and brick walls are permeable, love most certainly can conquer.

there are no non sequiturs and if someone built a foam house with a champagne glass bed for the grownups and a swiss cheese nook for the children, i'd buy a ticket and i'd try to get locked in. where would i sleep? outlook hazy.

In Search of Xanadu
"Hearkening back to Coleridge's poem Khubla Khan, Ted Nelson (the creator of the Xanadu in question) strives to create "the magic place of literary memory where nothing is forgotten". It's a beautiful concept, and if you've got a modem or if you're on the Net, it's a concept you can take part in."
Basically, Project Xanadu was simply the work I have been trying to do for hypertext that would allow freedom to collage, freedom to quote and inter-comparison of different versions - ease of editing that allows you freely to see what you've left in and what you've left out.
Ted Nelson

Xanadu: In Search of God, Man, and Machine
I do believe that image harks back to taking me on, taking on me.

But X Marks the Spot...
"The scope of our paper is to analyze the problematical status of x as a sign in the logic of a literary text. A concise text addressing and releasing the semiotic energy of x is a recent song by German industrial band Einst�rzende Neubauten, conveniently titled "X". "X" is the third song on Supporter Album #1 (2003), which EN recorded without the backing of a record label, relying instead upon supporter participation. We will argue that "X" chronologically recounts the different stages of a love affair gone wrong. Our interpretation will be based on a semiotic analysis which follows the narrative pattern of the song closely."


WendyBuckWild said...

Pandora.com is playing a song called "Feurio!" by Einstuerzende Neubauten, the ones that are mentioned in the end of this blog post.

i don't know german but i am fairly certain this song is about hellfire.

i've been having a weird day ever since my bus driver said to me "angels only get their wings once" after i told him i would not like to give him my number.

perhaps the forces of good and evil are fighting over my mortal soul?

i guess i should feel ok, there's a lot more angels than devils flitting across my day.

but god, CARING IS CREEPY. pandora just switched to playing "high energy" by evelyn thomas. middle name day...

Dones said...

Keep me suspended in time with you
Don't let this moment die
I get a feeling when I'm with you
None of the rules apply
But I know for certain
'Goodbye' is a crime
So, Love, if you leave me
Suspend me in time...

Easily my favorite movie as well. It even beats out Star Wars as the sentimental favorite. We need to convince Jessie to love it. Or to at least join me in singing the three duets when I play the soundtrack in the car...