Monday, January 28, 2013

The friendly ghost


But what should I do now? Maybe something fun, something to relax. Oh, a movie, I haven't seen a movie in a while, what's playing? Oh yeah, Kids — the one that got the NC-17 rating, that should be amusing. It’s at the Sony Nickelodeon. That's the theater inside the BU campus, right? I've never been there before.

I need something to eat. Okay, while I put on oats I'll take a shower, yes another shower, always something I can rely on. Wasn't I just here but I feel so different, what is it? Something about my body in the water and even when I'm drying off, the towel on my skin, yes it's still wet but who cares, who cares if it's wet, yes I'm chilly but I get to put on clothes, how exciting that I get to put on clothes and I even arrive early at the theater and some woman says to me: You look great, you'll be in one of these one of these days, trust me.

I figure she must mean Unzipped, should I go in and watch the end before Kids starts? No, maybe I'll walk around. Nothing to see, really, just a bunch of preppy assholes walking around — oh, wait, I know that one. Sort of. I mean I have no idea what her name is. Hi honey!

Hey girl. Do you go to BU?

No, I'm just seeing a movie.

Unzipped? I love his fashion.

No, I’m seeing Kids.

Oh, okay — are you going out tonight?

When I get back to the theater, they ask me for ID— are you serious?

I'm about to start telling them how I don't even get carded at bars, and you're going to cart me for fucking movie? But then I realize I do actually have my ID, in my bag, so I just handed to them with that glazed look in my eyes like how dare you.

Then I get inside and oh, this is kind of fun. Going to a movie by myself in the middle of the day, why don't I do this all the time? I guess because there's hardly ever anything I want to see. And, of course, the middle of the day, forget that.

And, forget these previews. And, gross, the actual movie starts with a het preteen makeout scene, you can see the sweat on their skin, little zits on her face. I thought Larry Clark was gay. I've seen some of his photos, and it's all shirtless boys. Like this boy, I guess— he's the one who's eroticized by the camera, his skinny body while he says: I'll be gentle.

Fake New York accents, what is up with these accents? All these teenage boys talking about virgins and pussy and how AIDS is a make-believe story. This boy Tully who looks like he's about 12 and slurs all his words in the voiceover, keeps talking about how he likes virgins, and then you see the girl from the opening scene, Jenny, going with her friend to get her HIV test, they're both getting tested but Jenny has only had sex with one guy. Tully.

Yes, you know it's doomed and is this some sort of cautionary tale for hetero teens who aren't even allowed into this screening except then she gets her results and it really is doomed and you don't know what to do. I mean I don't know what to do.

But here she is, driving around New York with shorter hair, right, wasn’t her hair longer before? Here she is, telling a taxi driver that everything's wrong and I'm thinking dammit, she's right, she's right. Everything is wrong.

And then there's a scene in Central Park, all these kids smoking pot and then two guys walk by holding hands and all these boys are yelling faggots, you fucking faggots, and one of the faggots, kind of cute and a little bit industrial or something, he starts to yell back and dammit I know that feeling. Oh how I know that feeling.

Then Casper, a white guy who's best friends with Tully who’s also white, he gets in a fight with a black guy who’s a few years older, and then suddenly his whole group of friends, mostly white guys but all races I guess, a few girls too, all of them are kicking and punching the guy in the face until Casper knocks him in the face with his skateboard and the guy passes out, blood all over his face and everyone is laughing.

He might be dead, that's what some of them think. They leave him there.

I don't know if I've ever seen the violence of teenage boys depicted so accurately.

Maybe this is kind of like Safe, in a way, although the style is so different. This is more like an MTV video. But is it also a queer commentary without queer characters? Except those two fags who walk by. And later a fag who does the guest list at the underage nightclub except no one’s dressed up at all, tank tops and cut off shorts, do people really look like this at New York clubs? Maybe it's not even underage, I mean they're serving alcohol.

Jenny walks right past the line, guest list, and truth be told she does look better than the rest — better hair, better make up — some guy hands her a pill, no actually he sticks it into her mouth, says it's better than K or ecstasy, she's trying to find Tully to stop him from fucking another girl, or that's what you think anyway, until the end when she walks in on him with a 13-year-old, he's just said the same things he said to her at the beginning: I'll be gentle. Of course I care about you.

And she walks in on him fucking this girl, and then starts crying, stumbles over to a sofa in the other room and passes out. Casper rapes her while she’s sleeping. The friendly ghost. We see his ass, muscular, pumping away while he's telling her it's okay.

And I'm crying, thinking oh this horrible world. This horrible world, and how do I live in it? I'm watching the credits with tears in my eyes and everyone's leaving. How will I get up off this chair, and go back outside?

At the very end of the credits, it says part of the proceeds go to teen crisis organizations. Aalk about crisis. I know those teenage boys. I mean I knew them. Those were the teenage boys I went to school with. Everyone went to school with them.

Afterwards I'm in the bathroom stall hugging myself and saying it's okay, Mattilda, it's okay. I wish I could call someone to hug me, but I don't know who that would be.

I call Sean. She says we should get cocktails.

I can't get cocktails right now.

 

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