My own private purgatory

March 18, 2009 at 7:40 pm (Uncategorized)

How can you stay in Idaho and not watch My Own Private Idaho. Ever heard that? Well one I lived in Idaho only for 12 weeks or so and secondly Idaho shouldn’t be the reason you want to watch this work from Gus Van Sant, the guy who brought us the movie which probably should have won the Oscar in 2009 Milk.
I must start with a confession though. I am very uncomfortable watching movies with homos and all. Watching brokeback mountain (in French) and that too with a chick I was trying to ask out was clearly one of the most  awkward 2 hours. Thankfully the movie was good enough for the time to pass by quickly. This “homophobia” has probably to do with me being Indian.

Anywho, the movie starts with one of the most impressive opening scenes with Mike (river phoenix) having hallucinations as he stands in the middle of an empty road. In terms of impact, the orgasm portrayed by a house falling from the sky onto the ground,  few scenes would surpass it. Mike and Scott (Keanu Reeves) are gay street hustlers as they land up in Portland afer Mike has another of his narcoleptic episodes

Scott is revelaed to be in line for a big inheritance from his parents when he turns 21, subject to his being a “good son”. His father is the mayor who thinks his son’s wayward ways is God’s way of punishing him.

The movie though shot brilliantly loses much of its steam in the first 40 minutes so much that I didnt want to come out of this self imposed blogging exile. But I guess this is going to serve as preparation for my new job. Times when you dont like them, times when you do but when there is a job to do, you better get ur hands dirty
Scott and Mike leave for Idaho to meet Mike’s older brother Richard in a quest to resolve Mike’s narcoleptic visions about his mother. Richard reveals himself to be Mike’s real father (Joseph Fritzl, where art thou) and then Scott and Mike leave for Rome in search of his mother.

Some great evening shots of Rome are followed by the revelation that she doesnt live in Rome anymore. In her place they meet this Italian girl Carmella who hooks up with Scott much to the envy of Mike (who is shown as having romantic feelings towards Scott from the beginning)
Scott and Carmella leave for States leaving Mike behind to continue his work as a gay hustler. But another narcoleptic lapse later, he finds himself back in Portland where Scott has overcome his past, disowned their former mentor Bob who dies soon after.

As the funerals for Bob and Scott’s father take place temporally and spatially simultaneously, in contrasting conditions though the scene cuts back to Idaho where a passed out Mike is picked up by a driver and the final image is that of the house which had crashed in the beginning.
I hate the very thing about this movie which other critics rave about- There is hardly a central thread running through which can bind the movie. Gus does a wonderful job with the cinematography and scene set up but scenes individually dont make a movie click. The only saving grace is the fine performances delivered by all and sundry. Specially from someone who was coming of Bill and Ted adventures.

The plot has evidently been borrowed from Henry IV. I say what plot. The characters are flat and the dialogue lifeless. It’s a visual treat. Just mute the volume, skip the gay scenes and sit back and enjoy some spectacular scenes

My own private idaho

My own private idaho

Genre : Beats me

Rating : Yawnnnn

Go see it for : Why Idaho is one of the most beautiful wonders hidden in the middle of nowhere.

Go see it with : Your gay partner

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