Saturday, March 26, 2011

Lionel Logue, Fiona Byrne, Barry O'Farrell, and Sims

1. In honor of Naomi Watts, I had a dream inspired by The Ring.  I'm at a shop with televisions.   There's this one TV that has little toy policemen next to it; in the corner.  The television is playing a documentary type thing where these men try to film a secret spiritual ceremony.  The women involved in the ceremony don't want to be filmed, and do whatever they can to stop the filming.   They're a bit violent about it.  I decide that since these women didn't want to be filmed, this movie should never have been made; and I shouldn't be watching it.  I try to stop, but I can't...even though I want to.  I can't turn off the TV, and I can't get away from watching it.

At the end of the video, an announcer comes on and says anyone who has watched this video will die in 30 days.  I'm hoping it's a joke, but am a little worried.  The announcer does say that if you tried to NOT watch the video, you'll have a less horrible death.  I then seem to be worried less about actually dying, and more about what would be the exact day of my death...kind of like in Scary Movie 3.   It's March 30 (in the dream) so I'm guessing maybe my date of death is April 30.  I'm figuring maybe by 30 days, they meant exactly a month away.  Or maybe not.  I'm wondering if I have to get out a calendar and count out the days.   

2. Saw that Kristina Kenneally has lost the election.  I'll read the articles later. Maybe.

3. Read an editorial that someone sent me about Lionel Logue.  Frank Bongiorno talks about how the movie is basically a bunch of lies.  You know....I think that's what made me lose my passion for the whole story.  I saw The Social Network, loved that, and learned most of it was not true.   Or maybe I knew before I saw it.   Then I saw The King's Speech, and for some reason I had the impression that it was mostly true.  So I decided I liked The King's Speech better.  But now I've come to realize that The King's Speech is really no more honest than The Social Network.  

Is there a benefit to dishonest nonfiction?  I don't know.  In a way, I think it just confuses us.

The article says, Logue was the Prince Alfred’s College–educated son of an Adelaide brewer. There’s no hint in the book of the larrikin who would cheekily occupy the chair of St Edward, mumble something about the previous “royal arseholes” that have sat there, and encourage the king to swear like a trooper in order to overcome his speech defect. Nor is there any suggestion that he insisted on calling the king “Bertie,” of which much is made in the film.

Yeah.  The Logue in the book is much different from the one in the movie.  And to me, the fake Logue is one of the best parts of the whole story.  So how are we supposed to feel when we learn it's not really true?

Well, I feel a bit cheated.

I think it would have been better if they refrained from manipulating history, and instead made a....I don't know.   How about a Disney cartoon with a fairy tale king who is helped by a teacher/therapist?  Then we don't have to worry about historical inaccuracies and disillusioned fans.     

4. Agreed with what Bongiorno says here.   Logue claimed to have treated the king “just as any other patient,” but this is clearly a nonsense. His letters to him while he was still the Duke of York in the early 1930s seem more to resemble those of a jilted lover than the “friend” of the film.

Yes, this is definitely the idea I got from the book.  There was a sad sort of clinginess.  I think I mentioned that it reminded me of The Giving Tree. It's a relationship in which one person is much more invested than the other person.

5. Thought about Bongiorno's idea that Logue was fictionalized so he'd fit the stereotype of an Aussie larrikin.  He says,  Is it because modern popular culture cannot conceive of an Australian except as the city cousin of Crocodile Dundee? An Australian–Briton of Logue’s generation, one with a deep respect for monarchy and a sense of ownership over British culture as strong as if he had been born in the home counties, is literally unthinkable in the world of modern cinema.

Stereotyping is big in cinema.  I won't deny that.  But I don't think Logue is presented in that way simply because the filmmakers couldn't get past the stereotype.  I think it's more the fact that by pushing the stereotype they made Logue more admirable; I guess because it's a very positive stereotype.  I didn't love Logue because he was a good speech therapist.   I loved him because he stood up against pretentious attitudes. Or at least I imagined that he did.  What would the movie be like if they had avoided the larrikin stereotype?  Who knows, but I doubt it would have won an Oscar.  

6. Felt a bit guilty for my political apathy.   I guess I'm feeling a bit disillusioned.  I don't really like the Liberal Party.  I don't like the Labor Party.  I like the Green Party when they're not being anti-Israel, but I doubt they're ever going to have a lot of power.  So there you go.

7. Read about Green Party in Marrickville.   My friend emails me about Marickville sometimes because she doesn't like their planned boycott of Israel.  I can't say I'm fond of that idea either.

The article doesn't mention the boycott.  It just says that people thought the Green candidate (Fiona Byrne) would win, but now it looks like she probably won't.  

8. Looked at Fiona Byrne's blog.  She denies allegations that they were planning to boycott China; and there's nothing about Israel.  I searched for that, and Palestine.  I got nothing.   

9. Read article about Fiona Byrne and the Israel boycott. The article says she denied pushing for a boycott; and she denied accepting an invitation to speak at a rally in support of the boycott.  Then later, when shown a flier for the event, someone from the Green Party admitted she had planned to go, but canceled so she could have a post-election break.   Okay.   Or maybe so close to election time, she didn't want herself seen as connected to anything controversial.  A Labor Party campaign person says, Fiona Byrne is an extremist, who is trying to hide her extremism for a few days in the week of an election.   Yeah.   It does seem that way.

10.  Read about the Labor Party's defeat.   The new Premier is Barry O'Farrell. Is it bigoted of me to say that I'm glad an Australian state leader has an Australian accent?  Probably.  Yeah.   It's just weird to hear a Premier of Australia talking with an American accent. I'd probably be fine if she had a Korean, Italian, Middle Eastern, French, or Spanish accent.  And if Texas got a governor with an Australian accent, I'd be TOTALLY cool with it.   

I'm slightly ashamed of these feelings.

11. Read about the election seat changes....same article as above.  There's 93 seats in the NSW Parliament.  The Labor party used to have 50, and now they have only 18.   Wow.  That's a big loss.   Eleven seats are in question, so they could get a few more perhaps.

12. Looked at Barry O'Farrell's website.   I may have looked at it on another day. Or I think I tried to look at it, and it was loading too slow.  Now it's working quite well.

I'm watching a bio video about O'Farrell.  He talks about how his family live in Darwin, and how Tracy stole most of their possessions in 1974.  So, he doesn't have many photos of his childhood.

O'Farrell doesn't like people who act unfairly or seek to harm others. I'm with him on that!  He also doesn't like people who don't deliver.   I'm with him there too, unless the person has a really good reason for not delivering what they're supposed to be delivering.

I got kind of bored after awhile, so I quit the video early.

13. Read article about brain surgery in brain injured patients.  It says that an Australian study has shown that those who undergo a craniectomy (skull surgery) are more likely to have impairments later down the road than those who are put into an induced coma.   

The surgery looked more promising because people recover quicker than those in the drug-induced coma.  They spent less time in ICU.  But later comparisons show that the drugged patients do better.

My sister had a brain injury, so that pushes me to be somewhat interested in the subject.   

14. Played Sims, and one of my Sims married William McMahon today.   Now he's William Winter.   I'm naming all of my new Sims after famous Australians.  Today I named a toddler Natasha Stott-Despoja.   She was adopted by two gay dads.  There's lots of gay parents in my neighborhood.   Gay marriage is allowed there, and everyone homeschools.  It's like my utopia.   

15. Decided to post early, because I've been working on Harry Potter related stuff and I'm overwhelmed right now.