Letters to Holly

Wednesday, February 28

Silent Snakes on a Hill

Bachelor Night consisted of three events of varying quality.

I call the store yesterday to see if my ring came in. It did. Thanks so much for calling me, Zales. I get there and find the same two young guys working the cabinets as I saw two weeks ago. I give my name, and the one who didn't process my order initially retrieves my ring. He takes it out of the numbered ziplock bag and hands me a receipt to sign. The receipt states that the undersigned has inspected the ring for all requested repairs. I read this and wait to be given the ring. To inspect, you see. The clerk is baffled as to why I'm not signing. So I say, in small words, I need to see the ring first. He holds it for me but removes the tissue wrapping. Looks OK, I suppose. I just want the stone; I can pay for another fitting or sizing somewhere else. I give him the signed receipt. He walks to another counter to get a Zales box. And as he does he mumbles something to the other clerk. It's probably about my unreasonable behavior. I get the boxed ring without a "thank you" or "hope she likes it" or even a "good evening." Nothing. I'm now convinced these two are running the joint by themselves in the scary-ass zombie-movie mall.

So tomorrow I'm contacting Zales and telling them they have a store run by monkeyfucker frat boys without a lick of courtesy or professional demeanor. What do I expect to happen? Nothing. But I shall never give them one damn dime again. Zales, you equals dead to me.

When Your Sis comes back, I'll present her with the ring, and hopefully all this frustration will vanish.

I then rented two movies, Snakes On a Plane and Silent Hill. While at the Buster of Blocks I noticed, just three shelves over from the massive stack of Snakes on a Plane DVDs, a knockoff film called Snakes on a Train. I had no idea such a thing existed, but I picked up the Plane film confident it would be ten times better than some quicky film slapped together to exploit rental customers with bad hearing or bad memories.

But after seeing Plane, I don't know how much worse the Train film could be. Plane is just awful. It's no fun, it's too formulaic, and it lacks the willingness to wink at the audience. It's also pretty damn stupid. When there are five subplot points that make your Logic Sense tingle within the first ten minutes, you realize have booked yourself a flight on Horseshit Airlines. The biggest surprise was Julianne Marguiles, who most know as the curly-haired nurse from ER, the one involved with Clooney's character. I felt bad for her to be stuck in this film. Jackson looks not at all embarrassed to be here, but he has very little opportunity to let go. The cult of the film developed around him solely, and without him, the film is easily dismissed. I can't recommended even for camp. It's just that flat.

Silent Hill, based on a creepy videogame, is a nice surprise for those who like outright monster horror. It's smart and sleek, with no wasted time for needless character moments. I admire its work ethic. The villains is a little plastic, the scenario a little muddled, but it has great atmosphere and otherworldy menace, my favorite horror element. One actress calls it a mix of "Alice in Wonderland" and Dante's "Inferno," which is almost precise, but one recalls too easily Aliens as the mom descends to a mechanical maze to find her abducted daughter. I enjoyed this one scroll by, but sadly didn't find myself scared by it at all.

Picture of the Day
Really. They made it.

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