The Marriage Interpreter (No. 20)

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The Husband: The father is an uptight face who says, “Balderdash.” And, “How DARE YOU, Sir!” I say it all the time. And I say, “Balderash!,” too. The mother is Peggy Sue. She’s American. Read on, Reader!

Mash Note Dept. : Wes Anderson

 
 

 
 

I am sprawled across the tomato bisque colored couch listening to the soundtrack to Wes Anderson’s The Royal Tenenbaums.

One song slides into another, creating a flawless, cool-hearted, melancholy mood— the handiwork of Mark Mothersbaugh (of Devo who has become a composer and film arranger in a big way in the last 25 years).

There’s very little crash or bang in the soundtracks that Mothersbaugh created for Anderson, which makes them ideal for writing.

They build a solid mood.  You can slide forward with them.  And they will go along with you, anywhere.
 
 

Wes Anderson’s films, notably Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, are three touchstones that I return to again and again when I am trying to figure out some intangible in my own work.

Anderson’s films inspire a really strong reaction in most people.

Folks either lovelovelove his flicks or they hatehatehate them.

One trait shared by the fans and dissenters alike is being LOUD about their feelings about the Anderson oeuvre.

I’m one of the lovelovelove folks, so please forgive me my adoration.

And now, before you commence with your eye-rolling exercises at the mere thought of watching an (insert expletive here) Wes Anderson film, give me a few minutes to tell you why I adore his films as much as I do.

I promise to stick to the basics.  I promise not to go overboard.  And I promise that I won’t hold it against you if you don’t agree.

Just hear me out.  That’s all I ask.

(You may commence with the grousing and the grumbling in the comments section at the end.)

Okay.  Give me a second to get this sleeping dog off of my legs.

Ah.  Much better.
 
 

My personal story about Wes Anderson really has to do with the three films I mentioned:  Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, …. Read on, Reader!

Because This Word Should Be In The Dictionary— The Ukulele and Kazoo Version

 
 

Newmarket Railway Kazoo Band, 1915
 

 
 

The ukulele and kazoo version

 /ˈthē/ /yü-kə-ˈlā-lē, ˌü-/ / ən(d)/ kə-ˈzü vər-zhən, -shən
 
n. phrase   An artwork that appears brilliant at first look, and middling-to-goshawful in retrospect:  Albert thought American Beauty was brilliant, until he saw All About Eve.  He then realized, to his horror, that American Beauty was the ukulele and kazoo version of a classic American film.  

{Orig.  Mod. Bluebirdian parlance, Texas-specific}
 

 

Library Appeal , 1973

 

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