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Obsessions

Ah, DVD is so great. While eating my scrambled egg this morning I watched about fifteen minutes' worth of LOTR, selected from different points in the movie with the easy touch of a button. Chose:

- "Shortcut to Mushrooms" (hobbits, cliff, tumble!)
- "Pass of Caradhras" (Legolas walks on snow--very subtle but true to book; Aragorn cuddles Sam and Frodo, just to keep them warm I'm sure)
- "Bridge of Khazad-Dum" ("YOU SHALL NOT PASS!" *whip-snag*, *fall* "Noooo...!"--that was very Luke-Skywalker of Frodo, wasn't it?)
- "Departure of Boromir" (he's gripping Aragorn's shoulder, then he's not, then he is, then he's not, then he is; is this a film flub?)
- Subsequent near-drowning experience of Sam. I agree with reviewer on Salon.com who suggested that the shot of Frodo's hand plunging into the water and grasping Sam's wrist (and Sam's grasping back, after a moment) will enter the annals of "great and famous film moments."

Anyway, it's clear that Tolkien has catapulted near to the top of my life's obsessions so far, in a mere few months. This got me thinking about what my other serious obsessions have been. And by "serious" I mean that I talk about them way too much, and I sometimes get frustrated and start cursing the stars that I couldn't have been involved in them somehow. (Like the hopelessly enamored city councilman in 'Waiting for Guffman': "It's just so GOOD, I mean did you SEE--aaagh!! DAMN I wish I was in this production!")

So the other obsessions, what were they...

I do believe the first would have been the Monkees. Yeah, laugh all you want. In fact this whole list will be somewhat laughable. Peg (my younger sea-star) shared this obsession with me; I was about 10 and she was about 8. We watched ALL the Nickelodeon reruns, played air guitar to their songs on the porch, formed a fan club consisting of us and two other guys in the neighborhood, and thought it monstrously unfair that we hadn't been teenagers in 1967. This obsession died quietly, but to this day I have a special place in my heart for those lads and can still sigh over Nez's voice (Michael Nesmith, for those not in the know).

For years after that, my obsessions were nearer--boys in town, generally. So the next fandom obsession didn't take place until, I suppose, I read 'Les Miserables.' I'm still not sure whether to count this one as an obsession. But I did read that big book twice, saw the musical, and have memorized the CDs. Even now, someone says "You're late" in just the right tone, and my mind immediately swirls into: "Marius you're late! What's wrong today? You look as if you've seen a ghost. Some wine and say what's going on!" "A ghost you say, a ghost maybe; she was just like a ghost to me...one minute there then she was gone..." I don't cry in public, as a rule, but that musical left me no choice at all. Quite the experience.

But there's really no living person you can stalk when it's Victor Hugo's genius you were obsessed with, so clearly I was ready again for a rock-star obsession. Enter The Cure. Age 20, senior in college, getting increasingly dark and sarcastic in response to the pastel sorority fluffs I lived among, I was perfectly poised to get bowled over by Robert Smith. My room became a swath of British flags, candelabras, black overcoats, styling mousse, and new CD's. I was also just discovering the internet, so I was able to read other people's accounts of meeting them backstage, and get myself into a bitterly jealous frenzy. My roommate at the time, no stranger to things Goth, helped me along in this; together we wrote a 30 Days to a Complete Gothic Transformation, and in the summer of '96 actually went and saw them in concert. Me and that spiky hair in the same room...ah, such bliss! And in fact I DID get backstage once, in England--via a chat room, where we sometimes talked with the keyboardist's brother; a few of us got passes. But Robert did not come out to meet us, alas. I had to content myself with getting the autograph of said keyboardist. Bah.

The Cure obsession ended in disillusionment. I had gotten just close enough to see the whole sleazy-backstage thing, wherein your quality of character had really no bearing on whether or not you got to meet celebrities. It was rather more to do with whether the roadies (or keyboardist) found you hot.

And I have not been obsessed with a band since. There have been brief, brilliant obsessions about books or actors. These two coincided neatly when, after deciding I absolutely loved George Eliot's 'Middlemarch,' I found that Rufus Sewell played the romantic lead in the miniseries version. Spent a few weeks in a joint Middlemarch-Rufus obsession. Quite pleasant. And a couple years back, I got interested in the notion of renting every movie Jude Law was ever in, but I gave up at some point.

Bringing us to Lord of the Rings. Of which I have said more than enough already. I can't guarantee anything, but given the quantity (and quality) of fan material available out there for it, and the teasingly long spaces between the three movies, I suspect that this obsession is settling in for a long stay.

I can live with that.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
wjer
Aug. 9th, 2002 12:54 pm (UTC)
LOTR dvd
Yeah, it's pretty darn good - I got it on Ebay for $13 new...happy happy me :).

How often do you write? What kind of writing d'you do? I just started a new community for screenwriters called, oddly enough, 'screenwriters'. You should join! It's kinda small at the moment, but hopefully we can unsmallify it soon.
mollyringle
Aug. 9th, 2002 03:34 pm (UTC)
Re: LOTR dvd
Hiya,

Let's see: How often do I write? Fitfully. Lately it seems to be revising more than real writing. Unless LJ posts count, in which case I write all the time!

Kind of writing: fiction. Prefer novels. Usually just basic fiction/romance/touch of comedy, but sometimes a bit of surreal/fantasy. Have lately started turning them into screenplays just for fun.

Screenwriting: nothing of mine has actually reached a screen yet, so I'm not sure how much help I would be to a screenwriters' community, but I'd be happy to join and soak up the knowledge of others!
kenshi
Aug. 9th, 2002 02:37 pm (UTC)
You'd better not try anything. Sam will kill you.
mollyringle
Aug. 9th, 2002 03:37 pm (UTC)
*snicker*

He's quite lethal with a frying pan, too, to judge from the film. Better watch my step.

Ah, the Very Secret Diaries; they're one of those things I bitterly wish I had written. Brilliant stuff.
hollinelf
Aug. 9th, 2002 03:01 pm (UTC)
- "Shortcut to Mushrooms" (hobbits, cliff, tumble!)
Don't forget the snapped carrot!

- "Departure of Boromir" (he's gripping Aragorn's shoulder, then he's not, then he is, then he's not, then he is; is this a film flub?)
Was a biiiig film flub. I swear there's something wrong with the arrow sequence too. Y'know how you can see the hole in his chest where the arrow goes, but it's not actually there yet? V.odd.

- Subsequent near-drowning experience of Sam.
I will admit, even seeing it for the 6th time I still almost cried, and I probably will everytime.
mollyringle
Aug. 9th, 2002 03:44 pm (UTC)
Don't forget the snapped carrot!
That moment was almost *obscene*. :D

Glad I'm not crazy, with the Boromir film flub. Oooh...will have to look for the foreshadowed arrow wound!

I will admit, even seeing it for the 6th time I still almost cried, and I probably will everytime.
Indeed. It's poignant enough in its own right, but they're catching us at an especially vulnerable point on top of it. Boromir died just a minute earlier, and then Frodo was standing there in tears with his Gandalf flashback--bringing back a memory of the "dead" guy is always guaranteed to get the audience sad... well put together, Mr. Jackson. *golf clap*
:)
hollinelf
Aug. 9th, 2002 04:03 pm (UTC)
I agree, Peter Jackson is a god! And all the actors. I once said that if someone had told me Elijah wood, Sean Bean and Ian McKellen were going to star together in a film, I would never have thought it would work. But, there ya go! I was soooo wrong, and i'm glad glad glad.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )