Monday, December 21 2009
I finally got around to putting in two items of much-procrastinated brownhouse hardware. One was a holder for a toilet paper roll, which consisted of nothing more than a six inch piece of half inch galvanized pipe in a matching flange, terminated with a matching cap. The other was a hinged metal support to keep the upper sink folded up against the wall when the lower sink is to be used. Such supports are used for holding open treasure chests or other lidded boxes and can only be found with a fake gold finish. This finish is even less authentic than it looks. It turns out that it is thin layer of paint or enamel. I had to buff it off with a power buffer in order to expose the underlying steel so I could electroplate it with a muted antique finish of copper and zinc.
Gretchen spent most of the day either baking cookies or writing (she's got a big speculative writing project that she's been working on). Meanwhile I've been continuing with my self-guided self-education in movies.
Watching most of the original Grey Gardens documentary, I was struck by the accuracy of the biopic version (starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange). As you might recall, I characterized Drew Barrymore's performance as an example of how not to perform a character with an accent not your own. But having watched the original, I have to make a retraction. Not only is Little Edie's accent exactly like Drew Barrymore's recreation, everything else about her is as well, especially the slightly-bewildered hostility tempered by insecurity and resignation.
I also rewatched the original Alien, which I probably saw for the first time in the late 80s or early 90s. Interestingly, its special effects and what not do not seem noticeably inferior to those of the sequel (though the sequel had a much larger budget). Indeed, the acting in Alien is much better than in Aliens, indicating that James Cameron isn't really an actor's director in that he doesn't seem to know how to coax the most natural performance out of his actors.
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