THE LIFE AQUATIC UPDATEJust so this week wasn't a complete washout for posting, I'll add a little something. Depression over several things (including the fact I'm turning 30 in a little over a month, as well as some other things I'm not comfortable talking about here) has made me very lazy this summer, and then I got some sort of late-summer bug, which gave me a fever and assorted stomache maladies for several days, sapping what little energy I had left to do anything. And now it's ragweed season; today seems to have the highest pollen county my nose encountered so far this year.
It really is too bad that I have been feeling so lazy this summer, because the weather has been about as ideal as I can remember a Montreal summer being, with daytime highs usually only around 25ºC, and night time lows in the low teens. No heat waves, which a lot of delusional people on the radio* seem to like but I loathe, unless I'm somewhere where I can look at people in various stages of undress, but there's nowhere like that in Pincourt outside of the municipal pool, not a good place to go if you don't have kids and don't want to go swimming yourself, since people would notice you leering at them, and all there is at the Pincourt pool anyway is little kids and their parents.
I have some things I have half-written... I'll see if I can finish them this weekend. But I rented the new Special Edition of The Lost Boys, starring Canadian Kiefer Sutherland, Canadian Corey Haim (a Montrealer who went to John Rennie High School in Pointe-Claire), and the, umm..., not-Canadian Goonie Corey Feldman. Even though it's an old movie, since it's the SE, I have to have it back to Pincourt Blockbuster by tomorrow morning.
Anyway, Yahoo Movies now has the trailer for the new Wes Anderson movie, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, starring Bill Murray, which I have been waiting for for a long time.
Here's the plot synopsis:
"Eccentric oceanographer Steve Zissou (Bill Murray) and his motley crew - Team Zissou - find themselves in troubled waters when they attempt to track down the mysterious "jaguar shark" that ate his partner while filming a documentary of their latest adventure. Zissou must also contend with a beautiful journalist (Cate Blanchett) assigned to write a biographical profile, and a new member of the team who might possibly be his long-lost son (Owen Wilson)."
The trailer itself is a bit dark and a bit saturated and almost looks like it was mastered from a fuzzy VHS tape, and this time I'm sure it's not the gamma on my monitor, but I've heard this is from a work print. The colours may be intentionally a little saturated to make it a little trippy, as, with the inclusion of creature animation by The Nightmare Before Christmas's Henry Selick and a couple of shots that look like they are from some crazy kind of dream sequence and with several tracks from David Bowie in the background, including "Queen Bitch" from Hunky Dory and "Starman" from Ziggy Stardust, Wes Anderson (perhaps assisted by his illustrator brother Eric Chase Anderson) does seem to be going for a semi-psychadelic look. Certainly, it's a trippier look than Bottle Rocket, Rushmore, or even The Royal Tenenbaums (in which Eric Chase Anderson's own distnctive visual touch was most evident).
For people who miss the "old" sardonic Bill Murray, he sounds the most Peter Venkman-ish in this trailer as I've ever heard him sound since around Groundhog Day. This will still be a more artsy film than Ghostbusters or anything else from Ivan Reitman, but it doesn't appear to be one of his more serious, melancholy, middle-aged guy roles, like in Lost in Translation (or as Mr. Blume or Raleigh St. Clair, of course).
You do see a glimpse of the cutaway shot of the Bellafonte (the name of the ship), which looks pretty much as I imagined it would. Well, at least I know those test screening reviews at Ain't It Cool News, which I discussed in June, were legit.
Also, for font geeks, yes, he is still using Futura for all of his titles, but this time, it's a "hollow" yellow outline form of Futura.
Here's a few of the pieces of dialogue which I liked best.
Steve: I'm going to go on an overnight drug(?), and, in ten days, I'm going to set out to find the shark who ate my friend and destroy it.
Reporter or Scientist: (French accent) What would be the scientific purpose of killing it?
Steve: (pauses) Revenge.
Steve: Split into two groups. I'll take Ned, Ogata, and Wolodarsky.
Klaus Daimler: (William Dafoe) Thanks... thanks alot for not picking me. (He looks sad and dejected like a student not picked in phys ed class.)
Ned Plympton: (Owen Wilson) I'm going to fight you, Steve.
(Steve punches him in the nose, Ned falls.)
Steve: You never say, "I'm going to fight you, Steve." You just smile and act natural and then you sucker punch him.
(Ned punches Steve back.)
All in all, I think it looks terrific, and I have almost no doubt that it will be my favourite film of the year, and I hope Oscar doesn't almost completely snub Wes n' Bill this time around. Yes, it does look very pretentious, but Wes Anderson is one of the few people in the world who make prentension part of the overall charm of the piece.
Just to maximize the Google hits I get, some other songs heard in the trailer, according to this thread on the IMDb forum, are "Ceremony" from Joy Division, and Mark Mothersbaugh's/DEVO's "Gut Feeling". (Mothersbaugh and his Mutato Musika studio also composes the instrumental music for all of Wes Anderson's films.)
*No, I'm talking about CJAD people, not Rush Limbaugh, who I almost always agree with completely. :P