Wow! As August comes to a close after flying by, a lot of great films hit which I would give four salt shakers to: Harvard Beats Yale 29-29, Trouble the Water, Tyson, The Class and Goodbye Solo. Normally I would choose one or two of these and tell you why to see them, but I didn’t want August to pass without acknowledging that this month marks the first anniversary of this blog!
Jessi and I worked together before she moved to New Mexico. I have seen so many friends come and go out of my little friendship fish bowl that I assumed we would e-mail once or twice a year before eventually losing touch. We are both frustrated creatives with the exception that Jessi works at it and I just repress it. Our e-mails would often turn to films we’d seen and we’d compare notes. As is obvious in this blog, some of the films she loved I hated and visa-versa. She then suggested this blog which I was dead against it since I see most blogs as self-indulgent and didn’t want to jump in that pool. However she convinced me to give it a try, nothing fancy just straightforward, concise reviews.
Last August, 'Salty Popcorn' began with Jessi’s post on 'Tsotsi'- I immediately countered thinking it was going to be the point-counterpoint deal, like the original Siskel & Ebert. We then both reviewed "The Savages" and "Surfwise", two great little indies and I put my best of all time list down. As we closed the most productive month ever, Jessi reviewed "Jumper" and I looked at "August" as we quickly realized it would never work for us to line up our viewing habits with the same films. We persevered somehow and this blog literally became my therapy.
Without going into detail we have both continued our struggle for meaningful work, again Jessi being more successful than I. I thought this blog would just die off since there were so many other places where folks could get opinions- but between Jessi and myself I feel we have added some original voice on the state of current home cinema. Even if we do have very light traffic, content is content.
I know one thing- as life gets me down - I do still find watching films to be my most favorite thing ever. This past year wasn't a banner year but through it all I have been able to watch many films I would never have had time for. Films inspire me and take me to a world as seen through someone else’s eyes. They touch and inform me- and remind me that the struggles of life are a common drama. I've seen artists who understand film as the 20th century art form and those who see it as a business churning out product. SP has allowed me the forum to yell at those who get it wrong and praise those who get it right. I’m still touched by heartfelt dramas and laugh loud at good comedies but unfortunately, more often than not, I feel like a hollow piece of crap has wasted my time and sucked out my soul. Yet that’s the point, I can suffer that turkey so you don’t have to. Even in my negative reviews I try to steer you to a similar film that got it right. So I thank you Jessi for nudging me into this. Happy Birthday ‘Salty Popcorn’! - Let’s keep the films popping and I’ll keep it shaking!