Monday, July 09, 2007

It's been a frantic day. Larry's tried to get this new Linksys router to work. We've been having problems since we installed it two weeks ago. Once again, he was on the phone for about an hour with the Linksys people. Hopefully, it'll work this time.

One thought is that "musicals" have made a comeback. It brought to mind a comment that someone made on Carrie Rickey's blog, when this kid tries to knock "Singin' in the Rain" (and all musicals; his argument is ad infinitum) because it mad ethe Top Ten on the AFI list. He believes NO musical should be on the list, because musicals are just dated garbage. The kid's arguments aren't even worth considering, because they show a homophobic panic response that i don't even want to get into.

But "musicals" used to be the way that people (around this country) experienced popular music. It was a way that people could see and hear the new pop songs. Now kids have music videos and concert films. What do they think those things are, if not outgrowths of what used to be called "the musical"? But "boys" don't want to admit it.

The ignorance is bliss.

But there have been several really fascinating "musicals" in the past few months: "Once", "The Wayward Cloud", "Colma"... John Cameron Mitchell tried to do something in "Shortbus" but it didn't quite work. But "Once" and "The Wayward Cloud" and "Colma" show that there are ways of trying to use music in movies, so that the music becomes part of the narrative. And i'm not just talking about the old-fashioned "book musical", the attempts at transferring Broadway to the movies as in "Dreamgirls" or "Chicago". (One of the best musicals since the 1960s was Alan Rudolph's "Choose Me", where the songs by Teddy Pendergast were used so evocatively.)


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