“For me, going to the movies is such a frequent occurance, that I dont tend to put much thought into it. A lotta people need to see a trailer multiple times, get feedback and reviews, and then make an informed decision about what to watch. While all of that can influence me, its not unheard of for me to go see something based on the tiniest bit of information. A few weeks ago, that was Never Let Me Go. Today, it was Howl. My knowledge of the film was it starred James Franco, and had something to do with a poem called Howl. Id YouTube-d the trailer once, but didnt actually pay attention. Really, they had me at James Franco. I love and adore that boy, and have enough respect for him as an actor that I trust his choice of films. In this case, I feel a lil more research would have been beneficial since I prolly wouldnt have put such a high priority on it.
Im not saying it was bad. It was rather good. Im just saying it wasn’t for me. The fact that it was centered around a poem shoulda tipped me off. I have never had the attention span for poetry. There may be the occasional poem here and there that I can get thru, but usually my brain shuts off after the first line. I can’t explain it. A good chunk of the movie was just the poem. You’d see Franco reading it, then there’d be some animated sequences with his voiceover reading it, then it’d be read during the courtroom scenes. I really tried to focus, but its like I have a special brand of ADD. My mind was all over the place except that poem.
The other thing that didnt work for me was that it was documentary style. Again, that’s just personal preference. I like narratives, to be told a story. This style wasn’t quite that. It jumped around between Allen Ginsberg’s life story (right, I haven’t said so yet, but that’s who Franco was playing), the poem, and the courtroom hearings over whether or not his material was obscene. The courtroom stuff did hook me. The biographical stuff got me when it was acted out, not during the interview-y bits.
Speaking of the courtroom, a big part of why I did enjoy those scenes was the wonderful and dashing Jon Hamm. Yes, he was very much Lawyer Don Draper, but that doesnt mean it didnt work!
Anyways, between chatting with one friend on facebook, texting with another, and talking to the roommate, this blog entry just aint going any further. My recommendation on the movie is that if you’re a fan of Allen Ginsberg, in particular with his poem Howl, then yes go and see this. Otherwise, its not really worth it.
Howl – \m/ \m/