Monday, March 28, 2011

The Art of Film - Two Parts

part 1.
I hope you don't mind if I go on and on today. If you do, oh well, I'm going to anyway :) I've got two things to talk about both related to the art we all love: film. Matt and I have been watching a lot of foreign films lately. I am usually not a huge fan of reading subtitles because I like to knit while watching and you obviously can't knit, read subtitles and watch the movie at the same time. But, lately foreign flicks are almost all I want to watch. I think they are a little more inventive and artistic in other countries when they make their movies. You also get a glimpse of their culture and a feel for the way they live when you watch them, which I love.
Last night Matt and I watched Amélie, a French film directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Netflix gave it five stars for us and it received 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. Still, I had put off watching it for a long time because the trailer didn't really appeal to me. However, Matt's cousin posted on Facebook that she and her groom-to-be watched and loved it so I decided we should give it a go. I loved loved loved adored adored adored it! It was absolutely the cutest movie I've ever seen in my life. Everything about it was unique. I hear all of the director's movies are fantastic so I am looking forward to finding out for myself (without any reservations this time). 

Now I'll get to my real point; what I got on here to talk about.
If you watch European movies you have probably noticed the contrast between their cultural views on sex and violence on screen, and ours. I was thinking about it today, and the perception over there really makes a lot more sense... Before you go and roll your eyes, hear me out. They are very open with sex and nudity, but very strict on violence, and we are definitely the opposite. Our nation is no stranger to sex scenes in movies, but it is very different. It's hard to explain. Sex doesn't seem to be as glamorized or (for lack of a better term) "porno-like" in most European countries. Love scenes in their movies are more nonchalant and seem to pass as easily through a film as a scene of someone eating breakfast. I'm not saying they are all like this, but it has certainly been my experience with the films I've watched. There may be a lot of nudity in a say a French or Spanish movie but you almost never see a horrific murder scene. 
This really got my wheels turning... Why is it that it is so extremely uncomfortable to watch a love scene when your grandma is in the room, but you don't give a second thought to watching someone being shot in the head? Mating is as natural as breathing in the animal world. What is unnatural and what we should shy away from and feel uncomfortable with is violence. I believe it is just so embedded in American culture that we don't stop to give it a second thought. 
I really want to try to implement the "European approach" to restriction on television and movies when raising my children.  I don't ever want my children to be able to watch a human or any other animal being put to death by a violent act without emotion. Likewise, I do not want their reaction to be excitement over how "action-packed" a movie or television show is due to it's violent content. And, along with that, I don't want to make sexuality and nudity such a huge forbidden issue (when they reach an appropriate age of course). I think it should be more of a open non-issue. I'm not positive but I'm willing to bet they have a lower rate of teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases over there than we do. Maybe I'm wrong though. And, I'm positive it is much easier said than done. Like my Dad always tells me, I'll know when I have my own children.

*Please note that I am in no way, shape or form putting down any of my friends or family for however they've chosen to raise their kids. I'm just thinking out loud. Feel free to disagree with me :)

part 2.

Another thing I was thinking about earlier today was music videos. Remember those?? I used to always watch music videos while I was getting ready for school in the morning, but I hadn't seen one in forever until I searched it out. Musicians still make them! MTV doesn't seem to have them at all anymore, and does VH1 still even exist? Where do they air them? I guess maybe they just make them so their fans can watch them online and have an image to go along with their tune. I was delighted to discover that some of my favorite songs to listen to right now also have amazing videos! Yay! Here are a few that make me extremely happy to be alive. They are beautiful and I hope you will take some time to watch :)
P.S. For those of you who aren't computer savvy, if you want to watch the video full screen you just click on the video and it will take you to the youtube website. Once you're there you can click on the four arrows in the bottom right-hand corner to enlarge the video.

Happy Monday

This song had no video, only the audio with the lyrics. I'm still adding it at the risk of people thinking I've gone over the "hippie" edge. I don't care. I absolutely LOVE this song. It perfectly sums up how I have been feeling about spirituality in a catchy little piece of happiness.