Monday, 4 May 2009

Rock Hudson, Poundland

Come here to the sofa at once and join me on the horizontal to watch my important collection of films.

First: Embryo, a tremendously stupid medical thriller starring Rock Hudson, Barbara Carrera, Roddy McDowall and Diane Ladd, which I bought at Poundland last year.

Poundland is where I go to buy Brylcreem, and sometimes biscuits, but I also use it to expand my cinematic horizons. Because what happens if you only watch what you’re advised to? You carry around this burdensome, deforming notion of Good Taste all the time, and you get all het up about whether you’re watching the right things, and whether you’ll be capable of saying something interesting about them when you’re asked at dinner parties. I get invited to surprisingly few dinner parties, but even if that all changes and I end up doing them every night of the week, I doubt anyone will ever solicit an opinion about Embryo from me. So if you read on, don’t be expecting much help with the dinner parties.

What’s far more likely is that you’ll be scarred with an indelible mental image of Rock Hudson toilet-training an adult Barbara Carrera, because that notion does crop up during my evaluation of the film.

It’s amazing how someone can implant an idea like that in your head, and it proves almost impossible to dislodge. It could be this scenario of Rock Hudson painstakingly toilet-training Barbara Carrera, or it could be something closer to home. I still think that I may have ‘child-bearing hips’, for example. One day when I was in the Fourth Form, I was waiting in the lunch queue outside the Dining Hall, and a boy called Ben Mayes walked up to me and said quite casually, “Hah, you’ve got child-bearing hips.” Looking back, I doubt he had any idea what ‘child-bearing hips’ might be. I expect he’d just heard his Mum saying it, and inferred somehow that it would be a pretty disillusioning thing to say to a pubescent boy. In fact, I am pretty much straight-up-and-down in the hip area, and always have been. But I do look at myself in the mirror sometimes, even all these years later, and wonder.

So anyway, that’s what may be in store once I get started on Embryo.

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