September 9th, 2004
It's come to my attention that I'm not generating content any more. In an attempt to rectify this, I have exhumed and, with an effort best described as Frankensteinian, revived this, answering questions first posed...rather a while ago.
somebodystrange has perpetuated The Interview Meme.
Rules are as follows: You comment on this entry requesting an interview. I respond with five questions. The questions will theoretically be tailored to you based on what I know of you (or want to know). You copy and paste those questions into your own journal, and write the answers, along with these rules. Anyone wanting an interview from you continues the game by requesting an interview from you.
Five Questions From Dave
1. What moment in your life makes you the proudest?
When I hit one, I'll let you know. I'm not a big fan of "pride"—I think there's a definite reason it's one of the Seven Deadlies—and as such, it's not a lens I look through often. This undoubtedly speaks to some larger condition of my psyche, but I leave an examination/identification of it to others. (That said, beating Chris Bonneau was definitely a thrill.)
2. You are given the all-expenses-paid opportunity to travel anywhere in the world with any one person you choose; money is not an object and you can do whatever you want and stay as long as you like. Where do you go, who do you take, and why?
Antarctica. Why Antarctica? It's always held a fascination, I suppose—someplace that cold and inhospitable just kind of appeals to me; besides, do you know anyone who's been there? I'd like to stay long enough to reach the Pole, then I'd get the hell out. As for who I'd take with me...it would have to be someone I know, but not necessarily all that well, and someone who won't mind the cold; additionally, it would have to be someone whose nerves I won't get on, and who won't get on mine. Any volunteers?
3. Imagine there exists an omnipotent, omniscient, benevolent God. You have the opportunity to ask Him one question, but He will ask one in return. Obviously, he will know the answer, but by asking it, He will cause you to consider something you probably have not truly considered before. (In other words, get introspective on me.) What do you ask Him, and what does He ask you?
Me: Why do I hate myself so much?
Him: What will it take for you to ever forgive yourself?
4. In your opinion, who are the five most underrated actors/actresses in the business today? Five most overrated? Three most underrated directors? Three most overrated?
Underrated actors:I have to lead off with James Spader. I've realized recently that I absolutely love watching him work—there's always so much more going on inside his head and on his face than is (probably) written on the page.Johnny Depp has, until this year, never really gotten the credit he deserved.Cate Blanchett gets critical recognition for everything she does, but there should be large shrines to her in every city and town.Brendan Gleeson has been working a lot recently, and the world is a better place for it.And when I absolutely, positively need a cheap laugh fast, I can't not call on Adam Sandler.
Overrated actors:Sean Connery, your bus is waiting.I could live fairly happily if I never saw Glenn Close again.Nicolas Cage is this generation's Richard Burton: when he's good, he's very, very, good. When he's bad...look out. (Luckily, there's a rule of thumb: Weird Nic=Good Nic. Normal Nic=Bad Nic.)She's lovely to look at, and she's passable as an actress, but Nicole Kidman hasn't deserved most of the accolades she's received in recent years. And Mike Myers, don't go away angry, just go away.
Underrated directors: Neil LaBute. I like Soderbergh's and Tarantino's stuff, sure, but I don't think there's anyone working whose worldview matches up quite so precisely with mine.Wong Kar-Wai is my favorite international director working right now--all I've seen by him is one feature and a short, but they've both been transcendant.And as counterintuitive as it seems, I'd say Martin Scorsese: he's got so goddamn much talent, more than any three other guys, and he so rarely gets all the credit and adulation he deserves (cf. the reception of Gangs of New York).
Overrated directors:Robert Zemeckis tops the list—hell, he may be the first ten people on the list.It breaks my heart to say it, but as of Big Fish, I have to put Tim Burton on the list—he's just been coasting on his early work for so long.And outside of School of Rock, everything Richard Linklater has done has just pissed me off.
5. A movie is going to be filmed about your life, and the characters involved will be from your LiveJournal. Cast the movie (including yourself) with celebrities. (Feel free to cast non-traditionally.)
OK, for a while now I've been going back and forth on the me character: the ideal, I think, would be the impossible spawn of Jack Black and Phillip Seymour Hoffman; if I had to pick only one, though, I'd go with Hoffman.
bdar will be ably played by Zach Braff (particularly after having seen Garden State); hssst will be played by Jennifer Garner because they're both ninja assassin superspies; for somebodystrange, Billy Bob Thornton (yes, really); serendipidy, Naomi Watts, as long as there are no follow-up questions;arettber is given to the previously-mentioned capable hands of James Spader; Audrey Tautou as adickers (don't ask why, it just works, OK?); supercouple wooddealer and jrstraus will be presented by real-life supercouple Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston; and for duck2ducks, I'm put in mind of John Cusack for reasons obscure.
Directed by Joel Coen from a screenplay by Joel and Ethan Coen.
I've gotta say, that last question is ten orders of magnitude harder than it seems on the surface.
Wow. What fantastic answers!
I won't give my responses to all of your answers (because some of it I think is best left alone by someone such as myself), but as far as your actors and directors in #4... I have to say, I strongly agree with most of what you said (which surprises me). I don't know much about Brendan Gleeson -- after looking through his bio, I realize the only thing I've seen him in is Braveheart, having missed everything else he's done. And I personally am not a big fan of Sandler's, but I recognize that it's a matter of personal preference -- plus, to my shame, I will admit to having enjoyed most of Waterboy and The Wedding Singer (despite my additional dislike of the 1980's and Drew Barrymore).
I personally don't have a problem with Glenn Close or Sean Connery, but I will admit that I may be caught up in Connery's mystique as opposed to his talent; I'd have to think about that. As far as Close goes, the only thing I can think of that I've seen her in is The Paper, which is one of my all-time favorite movies.
And as far as the directors go, I'm interested to know (a) how you feel about Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and (b) if you enjoyed it, if that ameliorates your rating of Zemeckis at all, or if it's just not enough to tip the scales. I'm not saying you should like Zemeckis -- I'm just curious about the division between director and work. Is it similar to Tim Burton -- coasting on early work? Or, since your disdain for Zemeckis seems to be fairly intense, if some of his more enjoyable movies still make you roll your eyes. (I also bring to the table Back to the Future II. I will readily admit to enjoying both WFRR? and BTTF2, but as with all movies, I think they're subjective enough that I don't care if you like them or not... I'm just trying to think of a couple Zemeckis movies that I personally have a hard time imagining disliking so that I can try to compare creator with created...)
Oh, yes... I forgot: Billy Bob Thornton -- I can so see that.