Friday, April 28, 2006

Lou Reed in Dark Water


After a perfectly lovely dinner complete with beer battered fish, mango salsa, coconut rice, topped off avec swampy cocktails, Tanner and I watched the Japanese version of Dark Water last night. The film's dark yellow, jaundiced colors and ominous tone create a uniquely somber mood. It rains constantly throughout the movie and you can almost feel the humidity seeping out of the television and coating your skin. The apartment building the mother and daughter move in to is dilapidated and dank, reminiscent of anonymous Communist Block housing. Like most Japanese horror films, Dark Water takes its time to get to the scary stuff. It creates an intense mood that sticks you to your seat and then it proceeds to weave this magical web around you and, before you know it, you are deep into its clutches and there is no turning back.

Without giving away the ending, I can say that it is really, terribly sad. It hit me in some deep, dark, water logged, secret place where the lonely roar seems almost deafening. It makes you want to hug your mother really hard until she tells you to quit it because you are a 32 yr old grown-up and you can't sob like a little baby anymore. Like the single mother in the film, our single mom has always loved us so very, very much. As the mother in the movie says to her little girl, "I think everything will be ok as long as you are with me."

Oddly enough, this film reminds me of a song we were listening to last night on Tanner's ipod: Lou Reed's "Perfect Day" off his Transformer album. Like Dark Water, "Perfect Day" is dark, dank and bittersweet. It is seeped through and through with loneliness, angst and suffering. But I always thought that made it an even more intense love song. Love and sadness are so closely intertwined, right? To me, that song was Lou Reed saying to the world, "Yes, life sucks the big one. You come into the world alone, spend most of your time here in pain getting knocked about and then you die alone...but, the big BUT, there are those little brief bursts of sunshine that make the madness bearable. Drinking sangria in the park, going home when it gets dark, dancing to slow songs in the kitchen, watching a movie and cuddling on the couch, drinking swampy juice, getting your hair brushed and even arguing about a sad song - all of these little bits and pieces make life worth every penny.

Tanner didn't agree that "Perfect Day" is a love song. He thought Reed was being sarcastic. Lou is pissed at this girl that keeps him hanging on when he wants to let go. Bitter, yes, but sarcastic...? I don't get that. Call me dippy if you will but Reed sounds so darn genuine. Or maybe that is just the soaring melodies that make it feel real to me...? What a sucker I am, eh?

The one thing we agreed on is that these perfect days, as nice as they may be for a momentary distraction, don't change the big picture. You still wake up the next day facing the same demons and sinking in the same dark water. But I think ultimately, it is like Reed's last refrain, "You're going to reap just what you sow" which says it all. It is your choice to reap something nasty and dank or something fresh and vital. You choose the path your life is going to take (unless you find yourself stuck in a Japanese horror film!!). And if that path can involve a homecooked meal, green cocktails, ciggies on the porch, spirited arguments and snuggles with the most special, wonderful and amazingly sarcastic boy ever, then bring it on. I mean, how many people can make you forget yourself so that you think you are someone else, someone good? That is one helluvah perfect evening. Sing it Lou...

Lou Reed
Transformer (1972)
Perfect Day

Just a perfect day,
Drink Sangria in the park,
And then later, when it gets dark,
We go home.
Just a perfect day,
Feed animals in the zoo
Then later, a movie, too,
And then home.

Oh it's such a perfect day,
I'm glad I spent it with you.
Oh such a perfect day,
You just keep me hanging on,
You just keep me hanging on.

Just a perfect day,
Problems all left alone,
Weekenders on our own.
It's such fun.
Just a perfect day,
You made me forget myself.
I thought I was someone else,
Someone good.

Oh it's such a perfect day,
I'm glad I spent it with you.
Oh such a perfect day,
You just keep me hanging on,
You just keep me hanging on.

You're going to reap just what you sow,
You're going to reap just what you sow,
You're going to reap just what you sow,
You're going to reap just what you sow...

PS Me and Lou Reed both got the golf ball eye disease!!!!

16 comments:

The Le Duo said...

'...with the most special, wonderful and amazingly sarcastic boy ever'

thats Tanner!

ps. come to Mankey Bar in Winooski tonight! Kyles band is playing and Marnie, Abbie, and I are going. fun fun fun till you daddy takes you prb away.

Anonymous said...

Japanese thrillers are the best movies!

"PS Me and Lou Reed both got the golf ball eye disease!!!!"

Hahahaha..!

- Your fan, Ivan (ivanie-89.livejournal.com)

Eva the Deadbeat said...

Yeah, the Asian horror movies rock the house, fer sure. Their dark moods, high creepy factor and subtleness are unparalleled. The Suicide Club is still giving me nightmares. I got my sister a bunch of Asian horror movies for her b'day and we have yet to watch The Eye, Koma and Tale of 2 Sisters....eeep!

JB, I gots to edit my stupid, always-behind, bloody, bonkering bits of a cable access show. But maybe i will pop by for a drink and hear a song or two!!

Love from the golf ball eyes!

Tmoore said...

mmmmm, Pabst Rue Bliven. yeah Jb, i'll stop by for one or 6. Great post baby; and you're the most lovely, sweet, hopefull, angst ridden gal ever. Keep on proving me wrong;

Just one little niggle; I suggested that Lou was beening sarcastic and cynical; not nessesarily pissed at the girl, just life in general perhaps. essentially the only difference between our opinions, and i think we came up with this in the end, was that your glass is half full, mine half empty.

I like your glass better though :)

Eva the Deadbeat said...

thanks babe, i like your 1/2 empty glass too, we can trade glasses every now and again and share sips...our glasses balance each other out pretty well me thinks...uh huh, uh huh!

PS and next time we disagree over a possibly sarcastic love song, is a spanking really necessary!?? ouch!

The Le Duo said...

'the Eye' is super good. I watched it with Marnie and Than aka the King of All Asian Horror movies (he even likes the re-makes)

Eva the Deadbeat said...

Cool! I liked the American and Japanese versions of The Grudge. But probably enjoyed the Japanese version a tad bit more as much as I luv Buffy. I've heard Old Boy is scary...

Brooke said...

You must bump A Tale of Two Sisters to the top of your list. It's the best creepy J-Horror film I've seen.

Eva the Deadbeat said...

Oooh goodie! I got The Tale of 2 Sisters on a whim cause of the sister reference but I had no idea if it was any good! Can't wait!

steve said...

Perfect Day is supposedly about heroin, which is why it was used in the OD scene in Trainspotting.

Eva the Deadbeat said...

Hey, is this Steve Bauman? If so, what's up? How you doing? If not, hello anyway! Hmm...can it still be a love song? Maybe a love song about heroin? No, he already did a love song about heroin...hmmm...check out the remix video of Perfect Day in my current post...not many signs of heroin in that sanitized version...no siree!

steve said...

Hola, indeed, c'est moi.

It's supposedly another love song about heroin, which made it really funny when I heard it playing in a drug store as muzak.

That remix thing... wow, did that suck. A clarinet solo? Was that Evan Dando doing that one overwraught bit at the end? They gave Shane McGowan and his missing teeth like one word (that's probably all he can handle at a time)...

The original is perfect. I don't like Lou Reed at all as a singer (or a songwriter, for that matter), but it's such a cornball song on the surface that his dispassionate monotone really takes it someplace interesting.

steve said...

Y'know, I bet that video was made because of the hype in England over Trainspotting. A couple of the people there are totally unknown here (like Ian Broudie of Lightning Seeds), and a few I didn't even recognize.

Eva the Deadbeat said...

Yeah Steve, I am with you. That Perfect Day remix is bogus but....I guess I am happy they are giving some attention to Lou so....I don't mind its existence too much. I think it must be a primarily Brit invention, probably did come out on Trainspottings' coattails. And if it is a love song about heroin, that makes the opera singers singing the song even sillier! I almost dig the absurdity of it!

And I am glad the Brits appreciate Lou. Seems like Americans only value that one damn song, "Walk on the Wild Side" which makes me barf I have heard it so many bloody times. Sad overplay abuse of a good song.

'Member that piece on Sid and Nancy I did (with your vhs)? There is an interesting youtube arguement about it...check it:
out...http://www.youtube.com/
watch?v=dUg1Mv0Nb1c

steve said...

The cynic in me thinks the English are only giving credit to Lou because he was a heroin addict and survived, and that was the height of heroin chic thanks to Trainspotting. I was actually over in London when the movie was playing there, and had a chance to see it before it came over stateside. It was crazy popular, and suddenly everyone was into Lou Reed and Iggy Pop.

But I can't really get into either because I think they've had mostly awful solo careers (with a oouple of exceptions) and made their marks with their bands (Velvet Underground and the Stoogest, respectively). For their band work, they get free pancakes at my house. For their solo stuff? Not so much.

The other great heroin song that gets the saccharine remake treatment is "There She Goes" by The La's. That awful remake made it out be this pretty love song, and the original is truly a beautiful slice of pop music. But considering the guy that wrote it is a heroin addict, well...

Some of the most overt heroin music is by Spiritualized. Very subtle stuff like: "Just me my spike and my arm and my spoon" and "Feel the dope running down my spine" are lines in the surprisingly beautiful (and funny) "I Think I'm in Love."

I saw your post about your YouTube adventures, so I did check out a few of the links. Yikes. I get dragged into message boards from time to time because of my job, and always regret it as they make me weep for humanity. But I do like the idea that Sid was a great talent destroyed by Nancy.

You need to do a montage to a Neko Case song, because I think she's the most amazing singer on the planet. And she's hot. She has a song called "Teenage Feeling" on her new CD that might be fun. Or at least do one to a New Pornographers song. Did you ever listen to the CD of their stuff I made for Margot? (I'm sort of obsessed with Neko.)

J.D. Ryan said...
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