February 2, 2007

A Little Snoring Coming From the Back Row

For the Cinecultist, moviegoing is a full body contact sport. Not content to just be a regular kind of movie person who laughs at jokes, cries at tragedy and says "awww" at kittens or small children, CC will leap out of our seat at unexpected acts of violence or fall asleep during the boring bits. For CC watching a movie isn't passive, it's utterly active. Except for that habit of sometimes sleeping during the movies, of course. Seriously, we've taken brief cat naps in pretty much every major movie house in New York and after last night can add the IFC Center to the unfortunate list. Worse yet, we think our tendency to "breathe loudly" while sleeping may have disturbed the woman next to us trying to enjoy the red carpet movie premiere of the documentary, East of Havana. Oops. Our bad.

When we arrived at the Sixth Avenue theater last night at 7:20 p.m., the line of photographers and journos at the red carpet were in full twitter snapping photos and yelling to Charlize Theron. Theron produced East of Havana which was directed by her long time friend Jauretsi Saizarbitoria and Emilia Menocal, so there was quite a downtown New York celeb contingency at the screening. Inside we spotted our imaginary boyfriend Justin Theroux, Famke Jensen, and some other cool fashion-y types (the night was sponsored by DKNY). CC was just there to see the movie, not mingle, so we waited kind of impatiently reading our New Yorker as the bold face names trickled in until 8 p.m..

The movie started out well enough, with a very stylized, graffiti-inspired photo montage of the main characters in the doc. Following the lives of three young rappers in Cuba, the film tries to show with grace the catch-as-catch-can life on the island. The music on the soundtrack is quite good and the rappers' screen presence telling their stories is moderately engaging. However, there's no particular drama in the hour and 20 minutes and a bunch of pretty pictures of decaying Havana don't add up to anything substantial. About 40 minutes in, CC started to feel the full effect of our 5 p.m. happy hour beer and began to get the heavy eye lids. Then, because we were leaning to the right slightly to read the subtitles around a guy's big head, our nodding off at this point may have bugged our neighbor. If so, we heartily apologize. We never mean to sleep at the movies, it just happens sometimes when the action on screen doesn't totally compel. The sad reality, because the filmmakers seemed so well-meaning and earnest in their introductions, is that this movie probably shouldn't be on the big screen. On television, particularly somewhere like MTV or Fuse, it's music video-esque flashy editing would really pop. But as a feature film, it was snore city.

Cinecultist skipped the surely star-studded after party. People who nap during the screening don't really deserve free drinks and celeb gawking.

Posted by karen at February 2, 2007 10:42 AM
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