Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Quick Shots: Nick and Norah's Infinte Playlist

This is a Kat Dennings. I find her hot as hell. I can say that, because she is legal. I know this, because I wiki'd her. 2008-1986 = 22, suckas.

Since moving to this city last year, my supporting cast has become markedly more diverse: I now boast friends of different religious and sexual backgrounds, ensuring I can make insensitive comments about most demographics, because I have at least one friend in said demographic.

Yet most of these friends are limited to dee-effing it at work, so when my lesbian Amy asked me if I wanted to go see Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist after work, I was a little surprised. After accounting for the whereabouts of everyone she would have asked instead of me, and because it was right after my shift at a movie theatre across the hall and Lady Trail would be out at her sign language class, I agreed. Thoughts, which go mildly spoilerish:

--Clearly, I am not this film's demographic. This is not to say I didn't enjoy it, but it's clearly not meant for me. Every generation, every segment of youth culture at a given time requires its 'movie where kids like them stay out all night doing nothing.' Back in my day, it was probably 'Dazed and Confused'. For the dumb kids of this generation, it was 'Superbad'. For the indie kids rocking the neon frame sunglasses and the scarves in the summer, it's Nick and Norah. It's a love letter for music nerds, and I can appreciate that, since once upon a time I used to be one. My issue might be with the type of music showcased.

--NY indie rock reigns supreme in this movie, and as a genre, it's music I have little patience for, and only recently gained some insight as to why that might be. I was flipping through the annual Da Capo anthology of music writing for this year, and read a rebuttal to a column by New Yorker critic Sasha Frere-Jones on the problems with indie rock. Topping the list: it has no soul. Read: it's not black enough. I'll leave Frere-Jones' column for you, but as expected it generated a sufficient level of ire in the music press upon its publication. One of the responses was from Slate's Carl Wilson, the piece collected in the Da Capo book. Wilson argues that Frere-Jones' problem isn't just the lack of musical miscegenation, it's an issue of class; indie rock isn't just the music of white kids, '...more blatantly upper-middle class and liberal-arts-college-based, and less self-aware or politicized about it.'

Wilson adds this makes the music less body-centric, more 'bookish and nerdy'. And as a drummer who listens to hip-hop 77 per cent of the time, that just doesn't click with me. Many arguments were had with coworkers the month we were playing Vampire Weekend regarding the danceability of it. Take a wager what side of the debate I stood on.

The characters in Nick and Norah love this stuff. They want plaintive guitar strumming and nonsensical, vaguely romantic lyrics. When something resembling hip-hop does take the stage, it's courtesy of a white guy in a Liberace jacket, to the dismay of everyone in attendance. Cool for them, but it ain't my bag. Well, !!!'s cool. I dig them. And Lady Trail plays the new TV On the Radio in the house, which is cool. But both those bands are familiar with groove.

--There's a really random plot point about orgasms that comes 3/4 through the movie out of nowhere, and doesn't really reach a worthy conclusion. While initially confused at its inclusion, I then remembered the movie was based on a teen novel, which made perfect sense.

--Where's Fluffy is the worst f*cking name for a band I have ever heard. Ever in life. The Dickaches, though, that's quality.

But it's a cute little movie, a fine enough distraction, and if you can still stand Michael Cera playing Michael Cera, you'll love it.


Anonymous Laurenonizzle said...

hahaha, nice callout on the 'Michael Cera playing Michael Cera' - so true. And I can't stand it anymore... though I would totally date him.

10:00 AM

Blogger The Trail said...

On the way out of the theatre, we were discussing what happens when he plays a criminal mastermind.

'Like, just find him...okay? And um, kill him. When you do. Find him.'

11:00 AM


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