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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

"My First Visit to the Movies", by Lex10

Lex10, GlyphJockey (and PCL contributor!):

"I don't remember it. I was too little. One might even think why the hell was he even in the movies at that age? Couldn't they get a babysitter? Or were they just well intended, but missing the mark?

Hell, regarding mistakes, I can remember trying to drag my daughter into a haunted house at Hallowe'en one year thinking it would be fun, but I heard about the foyer of the place (as far as we got) for the next four years from her every subsequent Hallowe'en). Eesh.

So Sebastian asks, "We're you scared?" To which all I can say is, "Fuck yeah! Brother, that's all I can remember!" (Well- not quite)

So, uh let's talk about my terror (don't worry, there's a happy ending):

The first film that I want to talk about giving me a, for lack of a better expression, shivering shit fit is Francis of Assisi

directed by the venerable Michael Curtiz, responsible for Mildred Pierce, Casablanca, Captain Blood, and We're No Angels. His mise en scene was the best bar none in the history of cinema, but that didn't reeeally mean anything to the little Lex10.

It was the scene shown below where a soldier shoves a torch into the face of the woman. A torch in the face!!! A t-o-r-c-h, torch! Worse yet, they pull the torch away and show the woman's burned face!!!!Yaaaa!!!!!! I spent the rest of the movie, worrying that they'd torch another woman, except briefly in one part when I got to contemplate how if you're really good, really, really in touch with god, - you'll bleed out your hands and feet! Fuck! I thought, "Ya can't win!" No wonder I lied in my first confession....

Actually, the next SSF*, I think, happened before Francis of Assisi- it was a re-release of Snow White. The imagery in the clip below should help, and the fact that this clip is in Danish doesn't lessen the small-child-fear triggers. This affected me so badly, that I had to be taken out to the lobby, where I failed to be comforted for quite a while.

My mother was so upset by the incident, she wrote a letter to Walt Disney accusing him of getting his jollies this way.......

*Shiverin' Shit Fit

The next flash of movie that I cannot pinpoint as my first, also comes under the "Should they have taken me?" heading, but if you asked me then I would have said "YEAH!"


Yipe. Yipety yipe yipe. There were more tremors than on just my pallid little brow, I can tell you. Like in my man-basement. I couldn't believe that there were theatres you could go to watch women take off their clothes!! That was like, my favorite thing, unclothed women, as our well thumbed Montgomery Ward catalog would have stood testament to. Plus, kinda the polar opposite of Francis.

"Enough" I can hear Sebastian saying. What, to me emotionally is my first real movie? I went to a matinee at the Menlo Park Mall. I walked in and the walls were bathed in blue light. Not just blue Yves Kline Blue - it fucking radiated anticiaption. The air was cool, and scented with popcorn, and I was a little man on his own at the pictures:

A Hard Day's Night-

I couldn't believe I was seeing this movie, with its black and white, reel upon reel of meaningless running and posing (whatn the fuck was going on?) English slang, itchy wool coats and song after song after song. I still get a weird chill when I see it, and I'm not even a Beatles nerd.

All I knew was, when I walked out of that theatre, I wanted to be one."


Note: Click label: "My First Visit to the Movies", to read more first-movie-stories.