Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It is no longer Remembrance Day but I still remember.

Amarcord (I Remember) - a film by Fellini which I watched over and over again when I worked at a second run movie theatre called Cinema Lumiere. It was operated by a coke addict whom we called the Snow Plow. Sometimes the audience would be munching popcorn in their seats but the Snow Plow couldn't pay for the reels for that evening's show. The night we advertised 81/2, for instance, we only had 63/4 in the can with a full house awaiting the masterpiece. The Plow always worked something out with the guys holding the reels though and so I saw many good films many times over. Amarcord among them.

Amarcord is a bildungsroman. Basically that means "coming of age" and is usually meant for novels ("roman" being German for "novel") but has been co-opted by film afficianados. When I saw Amarcord at the Lumiere I had a few years prior been through my own bildungsroman and was now firmly rooted in my kunstleroman (developement of an artist).

So after the show each night I skipped across the road to the tobacconist's shop to buy hot pink cigarettes with shiny gold filters called Chaliapin (after the Russian opera singer). I smoked them at the Embassy Tavern uptown while listening to old war vets with medals and jowls tell their tales over tall glasses of beer.

See, I told you I still remember. I remember everything. And I remember nothing.

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