July 3rd, 2004

Beep Beep Beep

Somewhere in the neighbourhood a house alarm has been triggered. It beeps for five minutes, goes silent for another five, then starts up again. It's been going for something like 36 hours now. I tried wrestling with it last night- pretending that it was cicadas or the creak of Don Quixote's windmill- but in the end I gave up and reached for the improvised ear-plugs.

The Biggest Dick

I've been trying to think of positive things to say about Brando. I've been trying really hard.

Whether he was a great actor or not is almost beside the point. People think he was great and that's what turns him into the cultural colossus he is. He looms above the movie business, stinking of tom cat.

Machismo: that's what he was all about as both man and actor. He was the biggest dick. And he fathered a tribe of big-dick sons. Hoffman, Nicholson, De Niro, Pacino. Too many. American cinema has been overwhelmed by them- all those sneery, sweaty boy children, crowding the girls off screen.

I hate machismo. I look at Brando and I see the enemy. I'm not critiquing the work so much as I'm critiquing a whole world view, a whole way of being, a whole culture. This goes deep.