Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Oh, Hey There...

...I know, I know, I come back long enough to say "I'm still here!" and then vanish again.

Basically, a few things are slowing down my work on this thing at the moment.

1) My job. It's not as nuts as it was in the fall (literally the busiest I have ever been), but I tend to stay late at the office to write my posts on a desktop computer because my laptop's uncomfortable for long stretches of typing, and there are seasonal things going on right now that keep me working well into the time I usually have set aside for writing this thing. There are basically three days during the week I can stay late, and they've all been occupied the last couple of weeks.

2) The length of my retrospective. Basically, I can write up a single movie pretty quickly, but doing three movies in one block means three times as long writing. So there's sort of a bottleneck effect. And yeah, I kind of want to keep doing the Hellraiser movies in blocks of three, because I think it's important to sort of see how they relate (or don't) to each other, and that's easier for me to examine in a single piece than doing separate ones that have to link back to each other over and over. Once I'm done tackling these films, I can go back to single posts.

3) Gotta be honest, the middle three Hellraiser films are kind of a bummer. The fourth is actually - well, "good" might be stretching it a little, but there's promise, there's a good idea there largely betrayed by a low budget and (according to the director, at least) attempts to make it more commercial. But both the fifth and sixth films are repurposed scripts that had the Hellraiser "mythology" inserted into them after the fact. The fifth is awful, easily as bad as the third, and the sixth (while also largely having the same conceit as the fifth, suggesting that there was a minute there where everyone was trying to write the next Jacob's Ladder), while being a much better movie - hell, probably better than even the second - is also sort of dispiriting in that although it's a good movie, knowing that it was a retooled script still sort of bares the lie. It makes it obvious how little it mattered by this point that the film be a creative work. It was something not to be made, but to be assembled from whatever parts were lying around. That the results were actually not bad at all is almost secondary, and it's sort of hard to write about something so nakedly and callously mercenary. I can only hope that the final three are so bad that I can just rant at length and abandon.

So yeah, I'm still here. Again. Just wrestling with the process.

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