Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Echo Canyon

By Pauly
Los Angeles, CA

Back in L.A. and the first thing I read?

Here Is What Happens When You Cast Lindsay Lohan In Your Movie.

It's not as trashy as it sounds. It's in the New York Times... okay, so that's not necessarily a good thing either because the pillars of journalism at the NYT have long since eroded. But a New York Times writer visited the set of Lohan's latest film and wrote "just the facts ma'am" and cranked out a piece that is instant low-brow fodder and a guilty pleasure for snooty faux-intellectuals who read How Should a Person Be.

The Lohan piece was a recommended article on Long Reads. In the age of fractured attention spans, it's refreshing to find a site that points out long-form journalism, lengthy essays, and elongated short stories. I was bombarded with sports stuff the last few days in Vegas and needed to take the morning off. NBA beat writers were cast aside. I opted for Lohan rubbernecking.

Paul Schrader and Braxton Pope teamed up to make Canyons, a noir-bent erotica written by Bret Easton Ellis. BEE's fingerprints were smudged all over the script. Adding a booze-swilling, pill-popping cliched trainwreck like Lohan sounded like a good idea at 3am when you've just inhaled six lines of blow. Drama ensues when Lohan does her best "spoiled-rotten and entitled" Lindsay Lohan imitation. Schrader and Pope knew they were serving up shit sandwiches and everyone had to take a big, juicy bite. Nothing surprises me anymore. People will do anything for a buck or to catch a glint of the spotlight. Cocaine is a helluva drug. It bankrupts you financially and artistically and then you wake up one day totally broke, jacked up on anti-depressants and cajoling Lohan to come out of a locked bathroom to do an orgy scene with a couple of porn actors.

The article was entertaining enough to finish reading it, but I won't see the film. Schrader's directing attempt seemed hopeless, although enjoyed his work as a screenwriter for Taxi Driver and Raging Bull.

I expect Canyons to become a cult classic in a couple of years for a new generation of stoners and couch potatoes, totally forgotten until Lohan dies in a tragic accident when she drives her Porsche off PCH and crashes into a vegan taco truck.

* * *

One of my neighbors is a guitar player in what sounds like a really putrid metal band. It's the same two chords over and over and over. He invites a buddy over to play drums once in a while... and although the drummer sounds tight and somewhat accomplished, the guitar player is bloody awful. Must be the lack of practice time? I don't hear him practice as much as my other neighbors (vocals across the alley and violin upstairs). Then again, it's a good thing he doesn't practice every single day when I'm in my office trying to write the first great American novel of the 21st Century. 

A different neighbor owned an ukelele. Fucking hipsters. Yet a real, legit musician lived in one of the other units in my building. He was horn player and practiced later in the evenings around 10pm for an hour or so. He bailed and I think a young guitar player and his cougar girlfriend moved in for a while. They fought a lot and drank a ton. They picked up and left one day. Disappeared. His subscription of Guitar magazine were never forwarded to his new pad, so the current tenant throws it away in a junk mail bin that also has become a refuge for orphaned mail from previous tenants. Once in a while you see a magazine that's worthy of adopting. In this instance, I snatched up Guitar mag.

The worst part about the immediate upstairs neighbors above us is the loud snorer. Sawing logs four at a time. And he's not what I call a big dude, yet he sounds like a small regimen of loggers snoring in unison. If I can hear it through the ceiling, then you know it's fucking loud. Trying to fall asleep at 3am while your neighbor is sawing logs is not an easy task. It almost makes me hate him for being able to fall asleep so easily, while I stare up at the ceiling in the darkness. I cannot see it, but I know it's right above me and above that is the bed in which he sleeps while he's dreaming weird shit like hanging out with Lady GaGa look-a-likes at trannie IHOP in WeHo.

* * *

If you're a fan of the Blues Brothers and John Belushi, then you have to read this oral history of the making of the Blues Brothers. Lots of hijinks. Lots of craziness. Lots of blow. How much blow? They set aside a budget for it. Man, I showed up on the steps of Hollyweird at the wrong decade.

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