Saturday, 25 October 2008

Welcome Back Department - Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler; Axl Rose's Chinese Democracy

On Thursday night I went to see Darren Aronofsky's The Wrestler, which took the Golden Lion at Venice this year and is attracting an awful lot of heat (affirmed by the ram-jam attendance at the first London press screening) in terms of a possible award-season run for its leading man, Mickey Rourke, for whom this picture may constitute the most substantive career-comeback moment since he started to destroy his professional reputation round the end of the 1980s. I think I may be writing more about The Wrestler and Rourke in print soon.
That same Thursday the free papers told me that Guns 'n' Roses' 13-years-in-the-making Chinese Democracy album is now ready for stores on November 24. I was quite pleased, though I will soon be returning to my Metallica Dilemma in terms of what sort of rock 'n' roll records a fellow of my age really ought to be buying/listening to. But then Axl will have aged and matured a little bit in the interim too, right?
In any event, for various thematic reasons and nudges in the dialogue, the spirit of Rose rather hangs over one's viewing experience of The Wrestler, even before one reaches the point in the movie that showcases a highly unexpected licensed usage of 'Sweet Child o' Mine'. The end credits duly express a deep gratitude to Axl W. These are the moments in life when it all makes sense: when, as Tracy Walter says in Repo Man, you're sitting there thinking about a plate of shrimp, then someone says 'plate' or 'shrimp' or 'plate of shrimp'...

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