Here's a picture of Jake Gyllenhaal spitting out sea water and a dead unicorn.
The day after Thanksgiving I was returning my home to its normal layout. (We’d transformed our living room into a banquet hall; it looked good, but I still don’t know how I’m going to repair the dent in the floor left by the wind octet.) In the process of carrying the pool with live swans upstairs to the sewing room (you have to make due when living in the city) I heard a sound come from my lower back that sounded like an excerpt from a composition by Harry Partch…
Yes, Christmas came early and Santa brought me sciatica. (Even though I specifically asked for a pony. With sciatica.)
What is sciatica? It is a set of symptoms including pain that may be caused by general compression or irritation of one of five spinal nerve roots that give rise to each sciatic nerve, or by compression or irritation of the left or right or both sciatic nerves, the source of which typically stems from tiny devils prodding the inside of your bowels after the neighborhood witch has cursed you.
This is exactly what my leg looks like now.
As a result, I haven’t been able to sit at my desk for a month and I’ve been doped up on pain-killers, steroids and craziest of all, smoking those reefer cigarettes.
It’s been over ten years since I actively smoked pot. I used to love it, but at a certain point in my twenties I developed a dire anxiety disorder, and getting high switched from something that made South Park even more funny to something that made me want to hide inside my bathtub. Under water.
Who knew this new year would see me turn into a temporary stoner? It’s been helpful, though – not so much for the pain relief, rather, it makes laying back and doing nothing much more... doable. Normally I could never spend an entire day and evening watching TV, but take a couple tokes of Mary Jane and suddenly: Why yes I would like to watch an eighteenth episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show, thank you!
Today is my boyfriend’s birthday. Naturally I went to Amoeba Music Hollywood to shop for a gift, and found the perfect thing for him (plus a couple un-birthday gifts for myself). I’m giving him Miracle Mile on DVD (it is, alas, not yet available on Blu-ray).
For those of you unfamiliar with the film (which is most people) I highly recommend it. I’m not going to attempt a critique because I hate spoiling as much as I hate spoilers – unless, of course, it’s movie reviews by Charles Reece, but only because they’re so riddled with complicated diversions and inflammatory flourishes that I forget about the movie he’s discussing entirely; besides, his writing is more fun than watching the actual movie most times, so there’s a pay-off.
Here's the trailer for Miracle Mile. Don't worry about spoilers - the preview does nothing helpful to give you a sense of what the film is either about, or even like. In fact, I defy you to watch this and predict a narrative...
You, my readers, have a sense of what I’m into by now and therefore can trust that if I’m recommending a film it’s worth two hours of your time. I’ll say only that, with Miracle Mile, the film you start with is not the same one you end with. Part David Lynch, part NBC Movie of the Week, there is nothing about this film that should work – from the radically changing tonal shifts in genre to the unlikely pairing of Anthony Edwards and Mare Winningham as romantic leads – but it does. It’s sort of breath-taking, actually, though not because it’s without flaws; you could even call it a mess and I wouldn’t fight you – but oh, what a glorious mess it is.
The score for Miracle Mile was composed and performed by Tangerine Dream. Dude.
As a side note, my boyfriend is a huge fan of Winningham’s music. Did you know she cut a few albums? You can find them in Amoeba Music’s folk section, and they’re well worth investigating.
She also appears on the soundtrack for Georgia, along with some intentionally questionable tracks by Jennifer Jason Leigh, plus John Doe of X fame. The soundtrack for Georgia is comprised of original recordings, rather than merely a compilation of previously recorded material, making it one of those rare soundtracks that’s worth owning. It’s a damn fine film too, although I wouldn’t recommend watching it unless you hate being in a good mood and want to bring yourself down a few notches. Don’t watch it with a gun in the house, is what I'm saying.
Happy birthday to all the boyfriends whose birthday is today, but most especially my guy. He’s rad, and I’m totally lucky that he got all born and everything.
➡ One of the best-written sitcoms in history, The Dick Van Dyke Show set the bar for all the rest.
➡ Long out-of-print, Amoeba Music still has the Tangerine Dream score for Miracle Mile!
➡ Love her as an actress? Adore her as a singer: Mare Winningham.
➡ Inventor of instruments and influential to all modern composers, Harry Partch is awesome.
➡ Plus much, much, so much more available at any one of our three retail stores!