Zeroville 2

“The thing is, that movie last night is a completely different movie when you watch it by yourself. Why is that? Movies are supposed to be watched with other people, aren’t they? Isn’t that part of the point of movies – you know, one of those social ritual things, with everyone watching? It never occurred to me a movie might be different when you don’t watch it with anyone else. [. . .] Too wisted not to be private, you know? I mean, five hundred or a thousand people of however many it is in a theater – what are they going to do with a movie like that? There’s too much common sense floating around the room, and what you have to do with a movie like that is give up your common sense, which is easier to do when it’s just you alone. It just seems … radical, any movie that, like, demands your privacy, because it’s, you know … a movie like that makes common sense completely beside the point, and you’re one on one with it, in the living room by yourself rather than the theater with all those people, and watching it is like being naked and you can’t be naked like that with strangers, you can’t even stand the idea of it, and you know that after you’re finished with it, much more with a movie like that than any stupid horror flick, some deep dark shit is going to be waiting at the bottom of the stairs …. so I just couldn’t sleep. That movie’s like a ghost. Watch it alone and you become the thing or person it haunts.” (266)

“The movies hasn’t changed. It’s still the same exact movie, but it’s like it sets something in motion, some understanding you didn’t know you could understand, it’s like a virus that had to get inside you and take hold and maybe you shrug it off – but when you don’t, it kills you in a way, not necessarily in a bad way because maybe it kills something that’s been holding you down or back, because when you hear a really really great record or see a really great movie, you feel alive in a way you didn’t before, everything looks different, like what they say when you’re in love or something – though I wouldn’t know – but everything is new and it gets into your dreams.” (267)

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