I was just watching Casablanca for about the 800th time and if Turner Classics would be so good as to run it again tonight, I would sit right back down and watch it for the 801st time. It's a movie that has many things going for it--great stars, an underrated supporting cast, a dramatic setting and a good enough story. But the thing that fascinates me most about it is its efficiency. I don't think there's a wasted word, scene, or shot in this movie. Information is dispensed as needed, and you know everything you need to know about the characters to keep the story going, no more, no less. The camera doesn't linger forever on beauty shots, but instead the whole thing just keeps moving. Studios today should force directors to watch Casablanca before they begin shooting their own films. The movies would be better for it (and probably would cost less, too). And if any of you out there haven't seen it, please give it a try. Even if you don't like it, well, it's only 1 hr., 42 min.
These are just the most stagnant of days, aren't they? Summer's winding down but isn't really gone, autumn hasn't begun yet but you know it's out there. It seems like nothing is happening and everyone is just treading water, going through the motions of everyday life, waiting for something to happen, some kind of change to set the next part of their lives in action. God knows I'm waiting for something to happen. I know, I know, don't wait for something to happen, make it happen. That sounds so easy and inspirational and I'm sure it works for some people. Me, though, it seems like I can't get anything going, and I'm stuck with just the little fires I'm trying to set, hoping one of them will catch the right breath of air that will turn it into a glorious conflagration. Or maybe it will just rain on them all.
I'm not making any sense, am I? Part of the problem is that I'm working on a math project, and math makes me excessively introspective and daydreamy. When I have to do math stuff, I suddenly shift into this mode where the world slows down and I examine every object and every movement to try to find ideas for math problems. Staring at the bricks of buildings, wondering how much they weigh, looking for geometry in rooftops and algebra in leaves. I become one of the neighborhood crazy people, walking slowly, looking up too much or down too much, carrying a tape measure that I whip out to measure sidewalk squares and rims of tires. I look crazy or like a potential criminal. Maybe I am, ladies and gentlemen, maybe I am--both.