Saturday, February 19, 2011

Diary of a Madman

So, we went to see "Diary of a Madman" last night at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Harvey Theater. It's based on the short story by Nikolai Gogol. It is a funny and disturbing near-monologue in which the main character, performed by Geoffrey Rush, expresses his descent into madness and dissolution.  Lots of laughs at first, not so many in the second half.

The quest for identity, for voice, can be a difficult and lonely one.  I missed the very end of the performance. I mistimed a bathroom break, then made the mistake of taking the word of the usher on how much time was left in the performance.  The last few minutes becoming increasingly uncomfortable to witness.  They were lost for me.  As I was waiting to enter the theater I said, "I had thought that this was Diary of  Madame, I expected a very different performance..." Always the quipster.

I would go see it again. I doubt I'll have the chance. Apparently the tickets are nearing selling out and we were very lucky to have gotten the seats that we did, just a few rows from the stage.

I doubt that I will watch "Pirates of the Caribbean" with any renewed interest, but I will be more aware of Geoffrey Rush.   If nothing else Pirates succeeds on the level that it hopes to. What more can be asked of a film really?  I always find it funny that my friends here in New York feel obligated to denounce films like "Charlie's Angels"... as if they expected to get in the theater and "Doctor Zhivago" would emerge on the screen before them instead.

What can be done?

The character reminded me of old mange-knuckles over at the DMV but I've run out of time to draw any coherent comparisons.  It is time for my wife and I to go buy a home in Brooklyn, she tells me.  It did occur to me that ever since I wrote the DMV piece I've been struggling with what has become an unwieldy blog, a forum for either my complaints about age, or me positioning myself against subjects that I clearly know little about.  My buddy at selavy warned me against this, said it makes me sound like a politician.  He couldn't be more right.  So, for now, I will stop with all this senseless campaigning, and get down to balancing the budget.

Until then, your faithful despondent,
-April 43rd