What I Liked This Week: 1/5/13

Happy Saturday, everyboddy. Working on a lengthier post that I’ll publish soon, but in the meantime here’s a short list of what I liked this week.

The plan is to do this once a week, unless I end up hating everything on a given week, which is possible but I am trying to put that darkness in the past and/or into my scripts. We hope instead for sunshine and cheeseburgers.

So. What I (especially) liked this week.

  • This article, by Charles Eisenstein, about why “Everything We Tell Ourselves About America and the World is Wrong.” It’s compassionately written, non-confrontational, and not as cynical as it perhaps has a right to be. I may be projecting that last point. Either way, please read it.
  • This short film, MAN, by UK artist Steve Cutts, which is fantastic and only three minutes long so I am not going to describe it. Just watch it. Smart, (definitely) cynical, hilarious — pointed.
  • This “clip” from an ep of Inside the Actors Studio, wherein Dave Chappelle opens up about why he walked away from his successful show, what he was going through at the time, and his opinions on celebrity culture and the entertainment industry. I haven’t watched the whole interview but am going to go back and do so because I’ve always admired what Chappelle did and am interested in learning more about him as a person.
  • This episode of WTF with Marc Maron, where Marc interviews Michael Keaton. I grew up watching and rewatching Tim Burton’s Batman on VHS at my grandmother’s house, and have seen many if not most of Keaton’s movies. I have always been a big fan of his charisma and had been missing him on screen until he started showing up again lately. Also a very big fan of Maron and his show, which was a huge help to me this year as I began the work of re-engaging with my life (on a personal and creative level) after a few too many years spent chasing the darkness (in myself and on the page). Hint: you can’t chase the darkness — it’s unending. That’s why they call it darkness.

Found most of these through The Twitter. The article was posted by Ted Hope, Executive Director of The San Francisco Film Society. MAN was posted by Short of The Week, a site I started following recently that does some great work curating short films from solid talent. I can’t remember who posted the Chappelle clip but will do a better job about logging this sort of info moving forward.

Have a good weekend, people. Hit me up anytime at my own Twitter page.

Welcome. And, why.

Welcome to The Furious Romantic Returns, the blog of Michael DiBiasio. For answers as to what (it all means) and who (is Michael DiBiasio), please visit the What? And, Who? page.

In terms of the reasons why I (Michael DiBiasio) created this blog/site/tumblr/wahdever, after a few other, similar endeavors have come and gone, and despite the fact that I’ve already got more than enough work to do with my film career, and so on and so dork…well…there are a few central reasons.

I frequently have a lot to say. I can’t (and shouldn’t) always work all of this into my screenplays, which — future days of the present enterprise excepted — represents 98% of my writing. But the day-to-day burn of trying to make it as a screenwriter and an indie filmmaker leaves little time and money for talking current events or philosophy at the bar (where I almost always would rather be, when not in front of my laptop), and other such venues. Hence, a more on-demand solution to the on-demand demands of both myself and the demanding generation of which I am part.

Regardless of whether I am right, I feel like some of what I have to say needs to be said: mostly because I haven’t found too many others saying it — at least not as loudly or as often as I would like. Only time will tell, I suppose, whether this means I am crazy or…crazy-with-company.

Attempting to whittle that all down, and also to simpliclarify — most days, for me, are filled with at least a little bit of anger and/or suffering. Partially this is the way I’m built. I am an emotional lightning rod. This sometimes makes it easy for me to be a decent writer. Most of the time it makes it difficult for me to, for instance, walk around New York City — knowing what I know and seeing what I see and feeling what we all feel but don’t always acknowledge — without getting smacked alternately by anger or depression, in the face of the everyday suffering and acquiescence of the average downtrodden American. Because so many of of us are more downtrodden than we realize or admit, because…well…

More on this later. But suffice it to say that I am romantic for a reason (put your phone away and watch a god damn sunset — or a rainstorm, if that’s your cheese) and angry for many reasons (social injustice is rampant, here in America and the world over, and it’s time we woke up and took some responsibility for the mess). Rather than resort to either willful ignorance or, alternately, cynical snark, like so many other representatives of my generation, I decided to take my chances and scream occasionally into the void.

Feel free to join. It’ll work out better for all of us if you do.

Thanks for reading, come back soon, and hit me up anytime on here or on Twitter if you have anything to add.

– Michael