torsdag, oktober 25, 2007

Approaching the City from the Air

Increasingly each Netflix DVD I receive is a shiny, round, flat piece of crap about 4.5-inches in diameter. Each arrives with a 0.5-inch hole in the center. As the modern toilet is not configured to accept rigid waste of this shape, I instead opt for putting these pieces of crap in my DVD player.

True, probaby 4 out of 5 play, but that 5th disc, like the one dang dentist who refuses to approve such-and-such toothpaste, holds out.

Okay. Now: not only have I been taking Swedish classes of late but I've been revisiting the entire Ingmar Bergman oeuvre and watching the movies in order (save for 1955's Smiles of a Summer Night, which Netflix lists as "A long wait").

I'm up to 1968: Hour of the Wolf.

I've been bitten by this film before. (Ha! Pun!) My mother once tried to give it to me for Christmas but Amazon never mailed it. We were asked if we wanted to be put on a waiting list. We did. Eventually, updates about the order stopped coming.

I've seen it before, yes. And I like the film. I wanted to see it again. So I ordered from Netflix as part of this Bergman run.
Alas! No joy. It arrived, but the piece of crap (described at the outset here), refused to play beyond the opening, annoying, unavoidable growl of MGM's promotional lion. (I cannot help but recall, happily, the opening of Strange Brew. The lion roars, per usual. Then the camera takes us behind the black screen and there we find Bob and Doug Mackenzie standing behind the MGM lion, whose resting on a platform. One of the Mackenzie brothers utters, "Maybe you should crank his tail, eh.") So the DVD isn't working. Not too surprising.

Ignorantly, I held up the DVD player for inspection--as if the player was the problem, and maybe the player is the problem?--and held it at a slight angle when a little urge in me compelled me to hit the OPEN button. The door slid open, but the disc...WOOP! It slid back inside the player.

Fair enough.

First I tried to shake it free. Ape sounds: Ooo-ooo-OOO! Failure. Then I tried to retrieve it with chopsticks. (Why do I have a pack of chopsticks?) Then small butterknives. More shaking. This, friends, is what separates us from the other low beasts: tools! And: ignorant uses of them.

Finally, I put on my shoes and trudged down to the car (which, of course, I'd parked two blocks away) and retrieved the old toolbox I once made with my grandfather. (Awwww.) I found what I needed: my toyish-looking little Stanley screwdrivers with the magnetized heads.

A few minutes later I had taken out the 10 little screws that hold the cover on the player and extracted the DVD; but not before taking a few photographs of the city of circuits and cobwebs that lives on inside this thing.

To boot: It's back together and STILL WORKING! Nice. AND: the disc played!

(I liked the film less than the last time I watched it.)

Still: Viva cinema! Viva Stanley! Bring on Autumn Sonata!


Anonymous Sara said...

Oh, I'm sorry you're having such a hard time with Netflix! I haven't had any problems with them yet. =(

3:33 em  
Blogger Claire said...

Dude. That whole screwdriver episode was very manly of you. Kudos.


10:45 fm  

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