On Jim Harrison's "Brown Dog" & Park Chan-wook's film "Stoker"

So I feel sorry for my poor blog, to which I don’t give enough attention—like the ignored dog that’s always whimpering to be taken for a walk or the proverbial red-headed stepchild (with apologies to all red heads and stepchildren in the world, hoping they’re not abused or taken for granted, you little ginger snaps). For the holidays I’m going to try to post something every day. Like those weird couples who take a vow to have sex every night (or day) for a year to spice up their love life. Only different. And for a ribaldly funny sex scene in cinema, check out what Marlon Wayans does to some stuffed animals in his Paranormal Activity parody A Haunted House (2013).
Right now I’m reading Jim Harrison’s forthcoming Brown Dog, which is a collection of six novellas, some of which I’ve read before in their earlier incarnations. Harrison is a terrific writer, one who loves a long, complicated sentence. He throws everything in the sentence like a baroque pizza, and you read all about the pepperonis, the mushrooms, and the mozzarella, only to get another pizza delivered to you in the very next line. I’ve always admired Harrison, and absolutely one of the best novella collections of all time is his (eponymous) Legends of the Fall (1979), which has three novellas, all of which were made into good films. How’s that for a long sentence about a writer who likes long sentences?
And last night I finally caught Park Chan-wook’s film Stoker (2013), which has the beautiful snow queen Nicole Kidman as a wealthy widow with a troubled teen daughter, who is visited by a sinister uncle, the kind of remote family figure who gives every family’s black sheep some kind of badness record to vie for. Although I can’t say that I loved it, the images are both glorious and gruesome. Plus it has that actress (Mia Wasikowska) who made for a great Alice in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (2010). I most definitely recommend it. It’s like Blue Velvet meets Jane Eyre.

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