Waking Death

September 1, 2004

[neon jon]I was initially disappointed that Mike A. was the only one to show up last night to watch Waking Life. But it did not take long for disappointment to become relief. After tolerating this movie for an hour, I paused it and asked, “Do you want to keep going?” Mike was visibly relieved, we turned it off, and he split.

This morning I watched the rest of the movie by myself. The trailer and the making-of featurette were both good, but it’s not good when they’re better than the movie. And I love jawing about philosophy! There were good bits here and there — like 3 scenes out of 20, two of which come after the one-hour mark when we finally turned it off. I may show just those 3 scenes to the folks coming over tonight — the “good bits” version should take all of 10 minutes to watch.

Jon Reid

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As an American missionary kid who grew up in Japan, I'm a child of two cultures, while not fully belonging to either. This gives me a sightly different view of the world.

6 responses to Waking Death

  1. Aye Carumba! I can’t believe you didn’t enjoy it! I really liked it when I saw it. It’s been a couple of years so maybe it has improved with age in my memory. I was bummed that I couldn’t make it to watch it with you, but I guess its just as well.

  2. I’ve noticed that there are many movies like that these days, with awesome trailers and pretty nifty previews.
    They are so misleading. Such disappointment! =/

  3. I guess I was expecting dialogs, not monologues. So many talking heads just started to bleed into each other, especially as I was somewhat tired. Three episodes stood out: the one on languaging, the one on “ants” and wanting to have “human experiences”, and the last one about whether time was created to make us forget the eternal and how God is always inviting us. But those were the only the ones that seemed to have immediate practical implications. The rest just seemed like blah blah blah. In the words of one of the episodes, “We’re all theory and no action.”

  4. Guess what movie clips were most prominently featured at the Soliton Sessions?

  5. Waking life is the kind of film that hits you like a curve ball. You have to be kinda ready for it. if you’re sitting down to watch a “great movie” then this probably isn’t going to hit the spot. It is however still a great movie in its own right as far as I am concerned. I’d say watch it again when you’re buzzed on coffee late at night. That’d be somewhere near the right setting maybe?
    I put it alongside other great movies that people have panned such as ‘Eyes wide shut,’ ‘Magnolia,’ and ‘Lost in translation.’ All really great films, but films that don’t really set the place on fire just by striking a match.
    Heck the only reason why i stayed in the theatre watching Magnolia is because I paid £5 and I wanted to see if it would actually get any worse. In the end though I bought the DVD, and really watched it from another angle so to speak. Only then did I come to appreciate it.
    Now I am sounding like some arthouse critic who drinks green tea and carries strange looking books under my arms all the time.
    I’ll stop now.
    [PS. Nice blog. Just flew by on my way to somewhere else.]

  6. Hey Simon, thanks for stopping by. Magnolia’s an interesting one — I loved it, my wife hated it. While at the Soliton Sessions, I watched it with Mike and the rest of the gang. I loved it, Mike hated it. To me, it’s all about redemption.
    Buzzed on coffee, eh? Yes, I may have to give Waking Life another crack some day.