The Player

Find self in hurry to get to work after The Wolfman experience. Notice that self now growls when annoyed. Pleased, as this replaces dinosaur wail that self employs whenever hurt or scared. Receive text at work from non-flatmate James telling self to drink champagne with him later on in day. Devastating weather situation provokes rejection of concept even though painfully obvious self has nothing else to do. Notification from non-flatmate James concerning his degree result means that celebration certainly in order.

Drink self to Archway and hide out in The Hideaway with James and non-flatmate-Prince-Charles-Cinema-employee Jimmy. Steal toast from Norton and declare “Champagne for my real friends, real pain for my sham friends.” Discussion of massive oil spills and Liberal homosexuals ends with revelation that whole event elaborate ruse to force self to watch Tim Robbins in The Player which was apparently plan all along. Two bottles of blush sitting in self satchel suggest self was gearing up for very different sort of evening.

Announce secret film blog and that preparations are necessary before best Altman film besides M*A*S*H begins. Know that inebriation will induce forgetfulness so nab copy of Review section from The Guardian to record notes. Note-taking later develops into transcription of flat-owner James’ sarcasm.

AVI copy of film appears on large television. Know not whether AVI version is worse quality than DVD as am struggling to pick which one of the Robbins’ I should focus on. Decide self too drunk and switch to Pepsi.

Find self saying in high pitched voice, “My names Robert Altman and I can rip off Orson Welles any time I please!” in response to famed sequence-shot opening. Self quickly chastised by James and non-drinking Jimmy, as homage obviously on purpose. Feel humiliated and that self role should from now onsimulate Ryan Phillippe role in Gosford Park.

Feel sorry for Robbins as someone threatening him with confusing postcards. Robbins convinced postcards coming from chameleonic-actor Vincent D’Onofrio but know that they are actually from vengeful ex-wife Susan Sarandon. Robbins so convinced that postcards from Vincent that he tracks down screenwriter Vincent and joins him in cinema. Jokingly notify absinthe-drinking James and absinthe-drinking Jimmy and recently-appeared-James-flatmate Johnny (not self flatmate Johnny) that The Player appears to have meta-filmic elements. Chastised again by non-flatmate James for failing to notice that film Robbins and Vincent are watching is called, in film, The Bicycle Theives, which is incorrect translation of original Italian and that this has distinctly Western connotations. Remain silent as feel out of depth. Take on Ryan Phillippe role by fetching cork screw from kitchen. Feel decadent and self-aware because action solely for personal benefit.

Am reminded of Boston Legal season two when Vincent says to Robbins, “See you in the next reel, asshole.” Find this funny because it is true. Notice Altman link to self self-reflexivity regarding title of blog. Am joined in laughter by potentially tipsy Jimmy and feel part of group once again. Robbins gets angry at frustrating Vincent and drowns him. James theorises in reaction to this: “Death of the Author?!”

Robbins decides to go to murder-victim Vincent funeral, but does so in incongruous fashion in large black jeep. Brent Spiner lookalike eulogises for dead Vincent. Feel sorry for Robbins as he is conflicted and scared and doesn’t know yet that Sarandon will divorce him.

By now have finished half bottle of blush after switching back from Pepsi and am sure that sudden appearance of Whoopi Goldberg hallucination. Feel sorry for Whoopi because playing actual character in heavily cameo-laden film embarrassing. Don’t know whether Whoopi terrible or brilliant. Either way, find self disliking Whoopi because of brutal laughter attack on Robbins in her office.

Foresight showed by Altman from beyond grave as Angelica Huston is seen in screening room declaring, “I have to cut.” Altman clearly on paranormal wavelength with David O. Russell. Alerted by James to cut from Malcolm Mcdowell to Andie Mcdowell. Realise Altman teasing me because Andie notes quickly in scene that Anie unrelated to Malcolm. Realise that The Player is not to be watched in self condition and paranoia and confusion reach dangerous level.

Condition leads to rupture in on-going sympathy with conflicted Robbins when he claims, “I came so close to dying tonight.” Little does Robbins realise what absinthe-infected James and self are going through. Relationship rebuilt when self remembers what Cloverfield-monster Sarandon will later do to him.

By end of film am watching AVI copy in 2D, 3D and 4D because of inebriation. Remain conscious long enough to hear James observe that Robbins’ character name amalgamates Cecil B. Demille and D. W. Griffith, visit bathroom, take bus with not-as-drunk-as-self Jimmy and pass out in bed. Notice that flatmate Tom still AWL. Presume worst due to how angry Robbins was in film and in real life because of what angry Sarandon will later do to him.

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About josh-in-reel-life

Often disgruntled blogger.
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