ok, so you were agreeing that there is that social attiude (coz I smiled when I read it, thinking “one” could be seen as reflection on self)…but then you got me thinking maybe in my youth I did pester some hapless reluctant obsession and who would know the impact haha maybe on some therapist’s couch somewhere today “there was this bird, meg, i think all my anxieties about women started with her….”
@Meg—I think you and JOKS may be on to something very interesting in analyzing gender sexual aggression (even though non-violent, and rather tame) when Roong becomes a persistent squeaky wheel. Though its psychological depth seems perhaps like something you have brought to the table. I’m not sure the director was engaged in a psychological profiling of a type, so much as the elements of an interesting and more complex engagement than one usually sees in less original films. I also wasn’t bored or felt overly pandered to during the sex scene with Orn and her boyfriend. In fact I was glad the scene played so long. In cinematic sex scenes (most so formulaic, we compress time into formulaic images—foreplay closed-ups of hands, lips, clothing being removed; then some close-ups of the woman’s head being thrown back, or to the side to indicate incredible erotic sensations (because he kissed her nipples, or some lower belly skin below the navel), a few medium shots or longer to show the two bodies arranging for some penetration (almost always Missionary positions w/ guy atop), then the close ups again on woman’s face to silently explain her complete abandonment of reasonable control until some feigned orgasm, generally breathy, rarely sonically devilish. All that’s left is lighting the cigarettes.
Blissfully Yours, however, kept the outdoor lighting, the medium and longer shots, the flab and moles on each one’s bodies and the long process middle aged people might require to become aroused enough for orgasm—only the guys’ orgasm into a condom as is produced later. CCC films allow the time it takes to watch and think about scenes. The boredom is an important factor. Is she comfortable, will she have those raw red abrasions on her back? Will his knees be uncomfortable digging into the hard ground beneath the blanket. Is she really lost in sex, or thinking of other things and “phoning it in” since the guys often are not all that aware of anything except the actions which religious types might consider “mutual masturbation.” There are so many questions which come into our minds just watching them. Almost none of them about sex. There’s a familiarity between Orn and her husband’s work mate. It’s sex as physical exertion toward the endorphine and dopemine runs of Orgasm. Most of the interest in the scene is interior in both actors, as it should be. We aren’t being asked to be voyeurs to titillate our own psyches, but query and reflect on hetero sex itself, theirs and ours. As a viewer, I rarely get that time, nor the absence of manipulative formulas, in order to think about sex, infidelity, the natural animal function of it all, the selfish drive for release, yet locked in a partnership of soft wet rubbing machines. I was taken back to how loving Orn was with her husband earlier that same day, and yet it didn’t feel disingenuous, or false. As seen in the market place and hospital, Orn is a person who can be dogged to get what she needs. Her husband has some sex issues and she has a lover on the side. Whether in the jungle or a bedroom overlooking the Seine, sex is as complex or simple as the people so engaged. I can handle the boredom of long walks through jungle, long doctor’s visits, long everything in Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s films because of the opportunity we receive as viewers to peruse the characters, the details, the story as it has been presented up until this point, the director’s decisions, the camera operator stepping on Orn’s purple bra while checking for camera flares, the lives of individual Thais, as opposed to typical Thais or cinematic Thais. I didn’t vote for this film, but I liked it a lot and thoroughly admire Weerasethakul’s technique and delivery. Meg, I don’t mean I’m right and you’re wrong about the sex scene, when I’m rational I realize those aren’t even factors with which to concern ourselves. I’m glad I saw JOK and your comments. Good films are a huge uterine birthing space for the growth of our insights and reflections, multitudinous as fetal cells duplicating. Films which don’t use the possibilities offered in the creative processes, but which rely on cant, technological money shots, or which use the art form solely as a product designed for fulfilling marketing programs to engender revenue; a pox on ‘em. I have to go and can’t proof read—my apologies.
“something you have brought to the table. I’m not sure the director was engaged in a psychological profiling of a type”
agree though I’d give all my bonnets to know if anything of that nature did cross AW’s mind, I did wonder – i have a particular interest in mens’ social perspectives/experience and am tuned in to stuff like that so thought about the skittish Min and his experience perhaps in a different light to what would be usually ingested with equanimity
will read this in more detail later, going out…
@Meg—I too am interested in “men’s social perspectives/experience . . . the skittish Min and his experience perhaps in a different light to what would be usually ingested with equanimity.” It’s a place that men don’t often examine in film or in public settings. Men have scads of secrets and insecure or taboo psychic areas, especially hetero men (in my proof-less opinion). The director has certainly looked into men with a certain honesty in other of his films. You may be correct about his concerns in Blissfully Yours as well. Let’s look at Min some more.