The Lookout

When everything is as confused as I am right now, something as simple as a Netflix disc queue becomes a source of mystery as the red mailers arrive with unknown contents. I tear open the paper and see the Tyvek envelope with its circular burden and read the little label. I have no idea why this has been sent to me – no memory of searching and adding – though I must have done it.

Tonight was “Lookout” – the great plains noir starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a night janitor in a bank. He suffers from dain bramage – sort of Memento light.

I didn’t really want to watch it all that much – I have plenty else to do. But I can’t send it back unwatched (that is something not to be done – a modern day sin) and I need to clear my queue so I can get my next disc. This weekend, I ordered The Rocky Horror Picture Show and moved it to the top of the queue. This is not for me, of course. I have seen Rocky Horror… maybe a hundred times. I have never seen it on video – I’m sure it’s pretty crappy on the small screen, it has to been seen in a crowded midnight theater. I’ve seen the live stage play twice- which is the best way to see the thing.

I ordered it for Lee. He has decided that blondes have more fun, and has bleached his hair. It started out sort of a ruddy gold, but with some work he has it at platinum now.

Several people have told him he looks like Frankenfurter’s Monster, Rocky, from the eponymous musical horror picture show extravaganza. He’s never seen it and asked me what was up, so I’ve ordered it.

Rocky and Lee

Rocky and Lee

I don’t know… do you think there’s a resemblance here?

At any rate, on to The Lookout. After all the weird crap I’ve been seeing lately, it was nice to see a well-done, professionally made, predictable noir thriller.

I remember when I was a youngster and living in Kansas we used to, every now and then, drive out, way out in the country after midnight along the arrow-straight sand roads between the wheat fields with our lights out. These roads are gridded out every mile from there to hell and back. You could speed up until you could feel the tires starting to float on the sand the tiniest bit. The drive would then be as smooth as fresh asphalt.

The thing was, once you turned the lights out your eyes would get used to the dark and you could see everything clearly by moonlight. The colors were gone, everything was a ghostly blue, a silent timeless featureless landscape screaming by.

We could see good enough to see if there was a combine stalled in the road, I guarantee it.

It was cool… except for one thing. I always had the fear, though the odds against it were astronomical, that someone might be doing the same thing, coming in the other direction.