My Screening of "Waking Life"
By Cody Wayne
November 16, 2001
(4 and a half hits out of 5... screw it, take the whole five-strip.)
My friend picked up some free passes to see "Waking Life", the new Richard Linklater film using a mind-blowing form of animation known as rotoscoping. FREE! We even got some free popcorn and a root beer since we knew some people who worked there, and it's not even a clandestine sorta operation. No hiding from the boss. It's all good as long as they don't serve the popcorn in the "special" bags. That's what costs the theatre the money. I'm guessing the bags themselves must be rather expensive if they have to withstand the weird chemicals in the yellow shit they throw on if you ask for it. I refuse to refer to it as "butter" as it's commonly called. It's some weird gelatinous yellow shit that, when heated, forms an only slightly less viscous, slightly more transparent salt liquid. I mean, what the fuck do you want that shit on your popcorn for? It actually dissolves the popcorn. Jesus, man.
So here's some shit about the movie.
Movies should, from now on, be rated on the amount of LSD it would seem reasonable to take and remain seated and focused while watching. I'd give "Waking Life", I don't know, a rating of about 500 micrograms. What this means in the new rating system that I've just now developed is that you should all go find someone with some good clean newly dipped blotters or just some straight liquid and eat about 3-5 hits. I can recommend this only to those people who know how to handle their psychedelics in public places, seeing as though 5 hits is a fairly good amount of acid, there's a fairly good chance that one could lose it, especially if it's really good acid.
Or maybe I'm just creaming myself over the fact that I've never seen a movie more conducive to the mean psychedelic experience.
"Waking Life" is basically "Slacker" on acid with, oddly enough, a more-focused theme, one dealing directly with how we deal with life, how we express who we are, and what the FUCK is holding us back from ANYTHING. Focused might not be the right word. The film is basically a series of thoughts and theories expressed through various relevant character roles that SHOULD BE engrossing, engaging, provoking, stirring, whatever the hell you wanna call it. It deals mainly with the infinity of NOW, the dance between the dream and waking states, and the infinite possibilities within each. "Waking Life" is an important film, a relevant film, a must-see film... ESPECIALLY right now with the general sleepwalking populous being distracted to the point of hysteria by mass-media-induced fear and to the point of stupidity by the usual barrage of TV sitcoms and talkshows that MIGHT be in par with a 6th grade maturity level.
But here's where the ole catch-22 comes flying in nose first... the people who NEED to be given acid and strapped down, eyelids stretched open or, as a jailed character in the film suggested, simply cut OFF are the ones who AREN'T going to see it. Several people walked out of the film after 15 or 20 minutes because the movie consisted of heads talking to each other about topics that required the viewer to sit back and EVOLVE THEIR MINDS. Nope, sorry my little fluff-heads, this is not a candy necklace or a ring-pop, this is called THE LIFE YOU'RE LIVING... and what a provocative life you must be leading full of non-conformity and self-realization. My friend at the concession stand said she overheard people walking out expressing how "stupid" the movie was. My guess is that these people went directly to the Santa Monica Promenade and jacked themselves off to the usual hell-diversions we've allowed Big Brother to bone us with.
This is a mother mind-fucker of a film. It's now become quite clear that this film was intended as a behavior modification film, a propaganda film, if you will, for the rising new class of highly evolved beings, that being US, and I'm sure you know who you are. That's why LSD is a perfect transcendental sacrament to take while going through the reprogramming process. What we should do is turn this film into a cult, never take it from the theatres. We should tell people that Britney Spears is doing a special performance in the theatre, tell them that we're showing some long lost "Joanie and Chachi" episodes, tell them that the Teletubbies have come to entertain the children, tell them that Birkenstock and Tommy Hilfiger have finally joined forces...IN THE THEATRE. Once they're in, lock the doors and spray a fine mist of LSD on the men, women, and children, then show the film. There will be no escape, no mommy, no daddy, just YOUR MIND dealing with thoughts that break barriers and leave you wondering why you've let it get this far without addressing these issues OUT LOUD. It's about JUST SAYING IT all the while SHOWING IT in an as-of-yet-unseen streaming form of animation that was used only to provide the cerebral palate with the perfect surrealness of the content... to induce the trance state with the visuals and then bombard you with the issues. Fucking IMPLANTING the issues so we can start moving along COLLECTIVELY to a more perfect realized eternal MOMENT, like a dream that we've taken control of, leaving no room for impossibilities:
"You can have so much damn fun in your dreams. And, of course, everyone knows FUN RULES."
"The ongoing WOW! is happening right now."
"If the world that we are forced to accept is false and nothing is true, then everything is possible."
"There's only one instant, and it's right now, and it's ETERNITY."
THAT'S what "Waking Life" is about. Go watch this film. Impregnate your mind.