“Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets. The space and quiet that idleness provides is a necessary condition for standing back from life and seeing it whole, for making unexpected connections and waiting for the wild summer lightning strikes of inspiration — it is, paradoxically, necessary to getting any work done.”
We’ve created this prison that we’re all very proud of. “Busyness.” We’re both the inmates and the guards and we can’t escape from it.
"I’m too busy" is my least favorite response to receive from friends when attempting to hang out. You can’t convince me that you’ll be so monumentally busy over a three month span that you can’t afford to spare two hours for a cup of coffee or a beer.
I’ve felt for a while that drama (or busyness) is something we create to make our lives more interesting than they actually are. Because if you’re not constantly “busy” you may be confronted with either emptiness or loneliness.. and that can be a difficult thing to confront.
You have to start asking the real questions: Who am I? What am I really passionate about? What do I believe in? What are my values? Who do I care about?
"Life is too short to be busy," Kreider writes. He’s correct. Time to play.
My Brother, Teddy dir. Kelly O’Brien
To be able to reflect and invoke the beauty of life in under six minutes is a masterful feat. This is an absolutely breathtaking short piece of cinema.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) dir. Michel Gondry and written by Charlie Kaufman
"Meet me in Montauk."
Difficult to believe this film came out 10 years ago today, March 19, 2004. On first viewing, in the middle years of my teenage life, it was nearly impossible to process the emotional experience. It was almost as if I was being given a sneak preview to the beautiful complexities and challenges of relationships. How scary and, in many ways, completely insane it is to put your faith, trust, and love in another human being. A melancholy exercise and examination of love lost and the struggle to hold on even after its irrevocably broken, the film may explore dream-like worlds, but it’s wholly grounded in an emotional reality that’s reflective of our lives.
It ultimately reminds one of the joke Woody Allen shares at the end of Annie Hall:
"A guy walks into a psychiatrist’s office and says, hey doc, my brother’s crazy. He thinks he’s a chicken. Then the doc says, why don’t you turn him in? Then the guy says, I would but I need the eggs. I guess that’s how I feel about relationships. They’re totally crazy, irrational, and absurd, but we keep going through it because we need the eggs.”
"Whenever I hear people dismiss movies as “fantasy” and make a hard distinction between film and life, I think to myself that it’s just a way of avoiding the power of cinema. Of course it’s not life—it’s the invocation of life, it’s in an ongoing dialogue with life." - Martin Scorsese
Věra Chytilová, patron saint of Czech cinema, passed away today at the age of 85. Upon entering the Czech Republic for my study abroad in 2008 to study and make films, Chytilová’s work was the first of Czech cinema I was introduced to and left an indelible impression. “Daisies” is unlike any film I’ve ever seen, brilliant an anarchic, and “The Apple Game,” currently unavailable in America, is also wonderful. Her passing will not be widely acknowledged in the States, which is a shame. She was an innovative and daring filmmaker and a gifted educator. The world has lost a true citizen of cinema. We need her audacious spirit now more than ever. Will be watching a rotation of Czech films this week to honor her memory. Hope you do as well.
French filmmaker Alan Resnais passed away this weekend at the age of 91. Resnais was a master filmmaker and a true citizen of cinema. Some of his great films include “Hiroshima Mon Amour” and “Last Year at Marinebad” and the short documentary film, “Night and Fog,” one of the finest works about the Holocaust ever conceived.
Martin Scorsese on Roberto Rossellini’s Paisan:
“For me, it really was the beginning. I saw it for the first time on television with my grandparents, and their overwhelming reaction to what had happened to their homeland since they left at the turn of the century was just as present and vivid for me as the images and the characters. I was experiencing the power of cinema itself, in this case made far beyond Hollywood, under extremely tough conditions and with inferior equipment. And I was also seeing that cinema wasn’t just about the movie itself but the relationship between the movie and its audience. Fellini said that when Rossellini was filming the Po Valley sequence, he acted on pure instinct, inventing freely as he went along. The result—in that episode, and in the Sicilian and Neapolitan and Florentine episodes as well—is still startling: it’s like seeing reality itself unfolding before your eyes.”