Saturday, April 04, 2009

A Couple Things

1. I went to see Adventureland Saturday and thought it was good but far less funny than I expected. I mean I laughed and all, but it mostly made me sad. Which is fine, except a little warning would be nice. I like to go in expecting the whole sad thing. (I also like to read the last pages of books ahead of time; I'm not so big on surprised). 

Adventureland also made me miss driving. Which is strange, I suppose, but one of the things I miss most about living in the suburbs is driving home late at night with the streets nearly empty and your headlights sweeping across the road, maybe a sad, quiet song playing. I loved that. 

I was three in 1987 (when Adventureland is set) and I certainly never worked in an amusement park, but the world of the movie still feels totally familiar--an experience I expect many people will have. 

2. In a 280 word review of Buffalo Lockjaw, TONY's Drew Toal manages to say that Buffalo is as grim and frostbitten a city as one can find in the continental U.S. (someone doesn't know their grim and frostbitten cities very well, I suspect), refer to it as a "bleak upstate land," and reference the 0-for-4 Superbowl run. Now if he'd also managed to wedge in Brett Hull's skate and the Appalachia-esque economy I might have been impressed by his "Buffalo is a miserable hole" dedication. But as it is it's just lazy reviewing. I mean, he says that the "scenes of high-blood-alcohol regression flirt with Northern-gothic clich├ęs"--I might argue for realism there*--but then manages to spit out a review where he regurgitates the most hackneyed cliches about Buffalo despite his limited space? How tedious.

*I haven't read the book yet so I can't really say, but I would bet Ames isn't exaggerating when it comes to Buffalo and drinking.

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