Inuit Empire - A Timeline of My Day at the New York Film Festival - October 8, 2006
A Timeline of My Day at the New York Film Festival
October 8, 2006
Saw “The Journals of Knud Rasmussen” at Alice Tully Hall. A very beautiful film about an early 20th-century Danish explorer in Inuit Greenland, but I enjoyed “The Fast Runner” more. Did not stay for Q&A.
Looked for people outside ATH selling tix for 8:30pm “Inland Empire.” No luck. Called friend Liz to tell her I’d try to get 2 tix. Still no luck.
Decided to wait in standby/cancellation line. I was about number 10 in line.
Lady in red sweater came out and sold tix to first 3 or 4 people in line, then she went back inside the box office.
Lady in red sweater came out again and sold tix to the next 3 or 4 people in line, then went back into the box office. At this point, I’m about #3 in line.
Random man sells ticket to #1 guy in line.
Lady in red sweater returns. Sells one ticket to #2 girl in line (#1’s friend). They leave. This puts me in first place now.
Elderly gentleman with neck brace, cane in one hand, and indistinguishable ticket waving in the air in his other hand, walks by cancellation line. As I move closer to see what the ticket’s for, another man, who had not been standing in the cancellation line at all, gets to the old man before me and buys the ticket. I see that it’s for “Inland Empire” at 8:30pm. I tell the man that I and everyone else who’s been standing in the cancellation line for hours should have had the first chance at getting that ticket. The ticket stealer shrugs his shoulders with no shame at all, and walks away.
Lady in red sweater returns again to sell me (#1) and #2 guy behind me (who I later find out’s name is Mark) $16 tickets. They are for the loge section, which essentially is the high top side balcony. With 8:30pm ticket in hand, I then attempt to sell my two next day Monday at 11:30am tickets. I go to the end of the cancellation line, figuring these people have the least chance of getting in to the 8:30pm show tonight, and most likely chance that they want to buy my tix for next day. Most people tell me that they can’t buy them, because they have to work on Monday. They are very adamant about getting in tonight, despite their chances. About half-way down the line, one guy buys a ticket. A couple of people later, another guy buys my second next day ticket.
I’m starving. I run to Starbucks. Line’s too long. Go outside to newsstand. Buy a Payday candy bar. Scarf it down and run back to ATH.
Get inside ATH and meet up with Mark.
Hand our tickets to the ticket taker ladies and head into the Left Loge and take our seats. His is right next to the edge with a better view. Mine is right next to his with two girls blocking my view in front of me.
Run out to bathroom.
Return from bathroom. David Lynch is already on stage introducing the film, and acknowledging Laura Dern’s presence in the box seat on the almost exact opposite side of where I’m sitting.
Film starts. The girls in front of me are still blocking my view. I move the seat a little, and manage to see in between their heads the middle portion of the screen. Nothing to the far right or far right of the screen is visible to me because each girl has a head on them. Then the two girls move their heads in together to discuss what’s taking place on screen. Now the middle of the screen is blocked, and I can only see the far right and far left of the screen. They keep going at it every few minutes. I gently and politely tap their shoulders and whisper, “I’m sorry, but you keep blocking my view. Would you mind if you would keep your heads apart?” They apologize. I get about 10 minutes of middle screen, then they’re back at it. What exactly do they need to keep conferring about? Is it absolutely necessary for them to speak at all during the film? Just watch the film! Not only is this David Lynch film one of his most bizarre and non-sensical films ever, but now I can even see what does not make any sense. David Lynch is such a visual director that any spec of screen that I can’t see will probably ruin the whole experience, and it did…for a while. Thankfully, a middle-aged couple who sat two rows in front of me got up half-way through the film. Seemed they didn’t like it. I moved into their row and had a perfect view of the entire screen for the final half of the nearly three-hour film. At this point, the film just kept on getting crazier and creepier, and I couldn’t make any sense out of it, but I still found it somewhat enjoyable.
Film ends. Spotlight shines on Lynch, Dern, and co-star Justin Theroux in box across the way.
I go down to the orchestra section and stay for the Q&A.