Cirque du Soleil & Shutter Island

Spoiler alert!

Yesterday we went to see the Cirque du Soleil’s Alegria with my boyfriend’s family. The tickets were a Christmas present from his sister. The show opened with a short clown sketch, involving the audience that sat right next to the stage. I’m not a big fan of clowns, so I’ll just skip that part. It was followed by a trapeze bit. The man was amazing. I was blown away. Not only was he an incredible athlete, his form was beautiful and really added to the performance.  On top of the gorgeous man flying through the air with the ease of a bird–which I think was the theme of the show–was the explosive voice of a live singer. The 18th century costumes, the myriad of lights, the trapeze artist swinging midair in auditorium in beat with the whimsical, slightly creepy circus music fully sucked me in and I felt myself becoming a believer.

The rest of the show were hits and misses. I discovered that I am not particularly fond of performances that keeps my heart in my throat, like the fire guy who lit his calloused hands and feet on fire as part of the show. But none of the performances topped the trapeze artist, which made me suspicious of my reaction to him. Was it really that good, or was it the initial impact to the start of the show? Was it the glitz and glamor that I slowly got used to?

This brings me to Shutter Island. Cinematically, it was seamless and beautiful. The artistic direction was nothing to complain about. Generally speaking, I find Scorcese’s work to be Hollywood’s attempt to capture the subtleties of Italian film making. He always seem to miss the mark by a touch. I thought he did a stand-up job with Shutter Island. It was creepy, and I love creepy movies. Maybe it was the storyline. I say the movie probably would have a bigger impact on its audience 20 years ago. I feel that our generation has been trained by the media too well that it takes a lot to impress us. We know the tricks, and I am the type to wait for a twist on top of a twist. I remember loving the movie right after watching it, then the impact faded bit by bit and I found myself forgetting why I loved it in the first place. Again, was it the superficial aspects that made an impression on me, and not the plot? If so, is it really a problem?

Am I just over-thinking the ultimate goal of entertainment? I was entertained on both occasions, but I guess I was just looking for a little bit more, something to make a deeper impression on my mind.

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