I've heard from a few people at the very least that it's interesting to peek inside the process of writing a book. If this totally bores you, email me and I'll give you the names of those people so you can go beat them up.
Watched Braveheart, Jurassic Park, and Independence Day today. No worries about the DVDs--went to Best Buy and got some nice $9.99 bare-bones editions of JP, ID, and Titanic. (Titanic special features? "Interactive menus." Hoo, boy, hold me back!)
Actually, the Independence Day DVD has two versions of the movie, one with nine extra minutes, and is rather spiff--or would be, if I actually liked the movie. Anyone know what's in the special edition? Because I was not in the mood to try and divine what they'd added in the ten years since I'd seen the theatrical version. I mean, it's a fun movie and all, and it was actually one of the best audience experiences I've had in a theater--it was literally July 4th, and half the audience seemed toasted even though it was only early afternoon--but it gets pretty ham-handed in places. Like, any time Randy Quaid or the dog are onscreen.
It's also been fun watching the movies with the English subtitles on--well, the subtitles on JP suck, because they take up a random quarter of the screen at any given time, but the other movies' subtitles have the decency to chillax down on the lower black widescreen bar. I did finally discover that William Wallace shouts "Alba gu bra!" at some point, but damn if I know what that means.
(Also: Mel Gibson really does have a Jesus complex, doesn't he?)
So. Tomorrow I watch Titanic, and then I will officially be out of time to stall. I'm getting a little worried about this whole enterprise--well, a lot worried--but, you know, sitting on my ass and worrying about it doesn't do any good. I may as well worry while I type up notes.
What I've decided to do is order the movies chronologically, which gives us a nice 1993-2003 span, and also ends the book with Lord of the Rings, which will clearly be the longest section. I set up a nice little My Movies category at the IMDB so I can have the info pages at hand, and the IMDB has provided me with the following list:
1993 Jurassic Park
1999 The Matrix
2001 Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
2002 Star Wars: Episode II—Attack of the Clones
2003 Lord of the Rings (2001-2003)
I'm going to write a brief little italicized intro to go in front of each movie, sort of recounting the reception the movie had on its initial release, the effect it had (or did not have) on the culture. Not only will this contextualize the movies, which I'm actually pretty well-equipped to do since I
ran run a movie news site, but it pads up my word count, and that's always good.
The actual process of writing the parodies is going to be a lot more haphazard, because that's the way I write anyway. Basically, I took some scattered notes while I watched the movies, only if something interesting occurred to me (Gladiator: entire pages of blank space) , and I'll start typing those up first. Whatever catches my imagination in the process gets written first, and even then I have a tendency to wander around a bit.
(I was fortunate enough to find six pages I'd written for Return of the King a while back, so I'm already a bit ahead of the game.)
Also, we've begun the argument of how much "obscenity," as my mother puts it, to include. Keep in mind that this is a polished, professional working woman, Baptist, and mother of two... who has no problem shouting "MOVE, ASSHOLE!" when traffic gets a mite slow. (She's anti-obscenity for the book at this point.) And then there's her mother, the genteel church-mouse type who would be horrified by, let's say, "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in Fifteen Minutes." And then there's Vladimir, who argues that I shouldn't censor myself. And then there are the movies themselves, which actually have, you know, sex scenes and beheadings and curse words. And my British publisher might be fine with anything I say, while whatever American publisher I get might want to tone things down. Meanwhile, "Everyone sit down and shut the goddamn hell up!" still makes me smile. So I have no idea. I have a feeling as to what y'all would vote, but... well.
P.S. Cat-bitten hand has not fallen off yet. Actually, looks pretty good, considering.