Monday, March 06, 2006

For all the wrong reasons

If you were able to invite either Truman Capote or Ennis del Mar to dinner, which would you choose? How about your mother? Your father? Your "funny uncle"?

Perhaps the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences found itself in that position last night. Which of those would be an easier dinner guest? Which would entertain the folks the most? Which could be metaphorically treated as a Maltese lap dog?

The Academy invited Capote, and tossed him a treat.

Not to take anything away from Philip Seymour Hoffman's performance, but Truman Capote would be the easiest of the two to have around. He was so far from the mainstream of social behavior that he could be easily dismissed after the entertainment was finished. Hoffman had the mannerisms and the voice down pat. He very well "mirrored" the reality of the character.

Ennis del Mar, on the other hand, is not so easily dismissed. He is soft spoken, masculine, seething with inner turmoil. He is self-deprecating, accepting of the hand he has been dealt. He does not shy from responsibility. Annie Proulx' character hits too close to the realities of the mundane for it to be easily accepted by the ephemeral "red state" mentality--so far. Heath Ledger had no primary source as did Hoffman. His creation came from his own imagination and life experiences.

I'd invite del Mar. I would be very uncomfortable with Capote. My father would've invited Capote and been very entertained and wouldn't have given the man's sexual orientation a second thought. He wouldn't have understood how del Mar could possibly be a homosexual.

Hoffman did an excellent job; Ledger's was just as good and much more creative.

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