Monday, February 29, 2016

Immersive Experiences, Unhelpful Advice, Cliffhanger Series Finales, and Needing IMDb Assistance

1. Started watching an episode of Home and Away.

2. Wondered about the Anzac trench replica used in the show.

The Summer Bay students are being forced to sleep there overnight. The experience includes hearing gunshots and/or other explosives and being hit with falling dirt things.  

I Googled and saw that one of these trenches was made in Melbourne for 2015 Anzac.  

The Summer Bay kids are supposed to be in Canberra, though. Or they're on their way back from Canberra. Melbourne would be quite out of their way.  

3. Found an article about a trench replica in Western Australia. 

4. Could imagine that if they have one of these replicas in Western Australia and Melbourne, it seems likely they'd also have one in the ACT or New South Wales.

5. Thought that Roo (Georgie Parker) said the wrong thing to Maddie (Kassandra Clementi).

Maddie is trying to decide if she should return home with her mother (Kathryn Hartman) instead of continuing to live with Roo.  

Maddie says something very sweet. You and Mr. Stewart have done so much for me. And I know that if I leave, I'm going to hurt you. I'm just really confused. 

Roo replies, You have to do what you think is the right thing.  

I think that's incredibly unhelpful.

It seems to me that the main thing holding Maddie back is the fear of hurting Roo. What Roo said isn't going to make things any easier for her.

I think what Roo should have said is, Yes. It's going to hurt when you leave. We love you. We'll miss you. But if you want to be with your mother, I completely support this. I want you to be happy.  

6. Wondered if I've ever made one of Jack's tough decisions even tougher by saying the wrong thing.  

I say Roo said the wrong thing, but I understand why she did it. When we're hurting, the stuff that comes out of our mouth is sometimes not very helpful or supportive.  

7. Thought it was generous of Alf (Ray Meagher) to have a health-related collapse.

The Summer Bay High kids weren't really gaining any insight from the trenches replica activity.

But now they're all bonding together to help Alf.  

Seriously, though. I think museums, replicas, and reenactments can give minimal insight into what people experienced in the past.  I don't think there's anyway we can come fully understand other people's trauma and drama without experiencing it ourselves.  

Personally, I think if there's anything that can give us a somewhat close understanding, it's TV shows, novels, films, and theater. 

8. Realized I could be wrong about this. Maybe it's different for other people.

I'll use The Holocaust for an example. For me, I'm going to get more insight and emotional connection from movies like Schindler's List and Europa Europa. Walking through a museum and seeing artifacts is going to touch me much less. But with other people, it might be the opposite.

And maybe for some of the Summer Bay High students, the replica/reenactment was having an effect on their psyche. Maybe they didn't need Alf's medical collapse to make the experience more meaningful.  

9. Started to watch the last episode of Tangle.

10. Stopped watching the episode before getting past the recap and did other things.

One of these things included reading part of a sample of a Paul Kelly Book—The Triumph and Demise.  It's about the Rudd and Gillard drama. So far, I like it. I'm definitely going to finish the sample, and maybe I'll actually buy the whole book. It will probably depend on how much it costs.

I'm going to have to REALLY love the book to want to spend more than eight dollars on it. And I doubt I'd love it that much, because I don't usually love nonfiction that much.  

It might end up being one of those books where reading the sample is satisfying enough for me. I had that yesterday with another nonfiction book—about the Americas.  It was sort of interesting, and I'm glad I read the sample. But I don't think I'd want to read a whole book about it.  

11. Felt I needed to clarify that the Paul Kelly who wrote the book isn't the singer.

At least I don't think he is.  

12. Checked. He's not.

I'm sure I've checked on this before.

It's just sometimes I doubt myself.

13. Went back to Tangle.

14. Wondered who Ally (Justine Clarke) is going to end up with at the end of the episode—the best friend of her deceased husband (Matt Day) or the brother of her deceased husband (Kick Gurry).  

I have no idea who it's going to be, and it could actually be neither. 

I like that I have this uncertainty.  

I think it makes the show more exciting.  

15. Didn't know who I wanted Ally to end up with. I think the brother is the better man. I think he'd treat Ally better than the friend would.

However, I feel Ally is more in love with the friend. She has more chemistry with him. And that makes a difference.

Sometimes settling is not about going with someone who isn't decent enough.It's about going with someone you're not truly in love with.

16. Wondered if it's better, in the end, to choose the person you love less but treats you well over the person you're madly in love with but doesn't treat you the way you'd like.  

I don't know.

The problem is, if you choose a person for how they treat you and not for how much you love them,  you might not end up treating THEM so well. The relationship might be very uneven, and the less- loved person might be taken for granted.  

17. Liked scene with Christine (Catherine McClements) bitching out her psychologist.

Christine does this, because she feels the psychologist gave her bad advice—advice that went against her own instincts and advice she feels ended up causing major problems for her family.  

I don't know if I agree that the advice was bad or not, but, at the very least, I feel the psychologist was annoyingly condescending.

The thing is,  I resent some people for advice they gave me in life, and there's a part of me that would like to bitch them out. Most of this annoying and hurtful advice comes from people who don't know or refuse to try to understand the full story.  

It's unlikely I'll ever bitch them out, but it was cathartic to see Christine doing it. 

18. Heard Christine bitch out Nat (Kat Stewart) for being a selfish parent—putting her needs before her child.

That's another thing I'd like to bitch out—selfish parents. 

I don't think parents should be selfless. Definitely not. They don't need to be martyrs all the time.It's just sad that there are parents who usually put their own interests and ego ahead of their children's needs and wants. They rarely make sacrifices, big or small, for their children.  

That being said, I'm not sure Nat is that kind of parent. I think she was in the past. And in the present, she's an actress who has a bit of an ego. That probably makes her selfish to some extent.  I'm not sure how bad she is as a parent now, though.  I know she's not perfect, but I don't know if she's absolutely horrible.

19. Saw the ending of Tangle.

Not only did it lack a happy ending—or at least a temporarily moment-of-peace ending; it was downright troublesome.  It seems like a cliffhanger, which makes me think the creators of the show did not expect it to be the last episode.

20. Thought that if TV show writers are not 100% sure their show is going to be renewed, they should end on a slightly positive or, at least, hopeful note.  I think most viewers are intelligent enough to know there's not going to be a happy ending for these people. Heck, there's never a happy ending for ANYONE.  But most people are lucky enough to have moments of contentment. There's no reason to end a series on the day the shit totally hits the fan. End the series on the day AFTER the shit hits the fan...with the inference that one day shit will hit the fan again.  

21. Went to the Tropfest website.

Today I'm going to watch a 2010 finalist film called "Nick and Shauna".

Pia Miranda is one of the stars, and also a producer.  I can see that from the icon picture, and the small amount of credit information that's on the film's Tropfest page.

There's a guy in the picture who looks familar to me, but I'm not sure who he is.

I'll find out later.

22. Started watching the film.

23. Had an idea of who the guy is.

I'm pretty sure he was in the last season of The Secret Life of Us. He played the brother of Jane Harber.

24. Recognized another actor.

I don't remember his name, but I think he was one of the stars of Howzat. 

25. Finished watching the film.

I thought the premise was fun. It's about cousins whose childhood dance video goes viral, and they try to capitalize on their fifteen minutes of fame.

I can't say I was overly entertained by the execution of the film.  I'm not sure why.  It could just be my mood.  It could be that I felt the actors were mocking the characters.

No, that can't be right. 

I mean the actors WERE mocking the characters, but plenty of comedy does that successfully.

I can't really give a definite, rational reason for why I didn't like the film very much.  It's just that for some reason I found it more annoying than funny and endearing.

26. Thought the name of the director (Alyssa McClelland) sounds familiar. I think maybe she was one of the actresses on I Rock.

I'm probably totally wrong about that.

27. Saw that the main actor in the film is Ryan Johnson.  

28. Saw that the Howzat actor's name is Abe Forsythe. His role in this film, by the way, is very brief.

29. Saw from IMDb that Alyssa McClelland is NOT the actress from I Rock.   

I do know her as an actress, though. She's the one who was in the short film with Kerry Armstrong—the one with the elevator.  I watched it twice—once because of Kerry Armstrong, and another time because of the director. Now I can't remember who the director is.

30. Used IMDb to refresh my memory.

The name of the film with Armstrong and McClelland is "Mind the Gap".  The director is Rachel Givney. She's the one who directed "Bargain"—one of the 2009 finalists.  That film introduced me to the actor Andrew Steel, which led me to watching the show Justice Lease.

I wish my brain had the capability to remember all these connections.

31. Looked for the I Rock actress.

It's Allison Bell.

That's not very close to Alyssa McClelland. 

I guess I got the Al part right.