Yesterday, I went back on Lamictal. I made it almost five months. But I've been losing more days to my unquiet, raging mind than I've been able to work. I've made Kathryn's life hell. There have been seizures. I've been extra-suicidal. Monday evening, I thought I was on my way to the emergency room. And this state of affairs cannot be allowed to continue. So, I'm back on Lamictal, with all it's horrible fucking side effects. It will be six weeks or so until I'm at a dose high enough that it's likely to help, but hopefully I'll see some improvement soon.
How have you lot been?
I'm trying get the editing finished on Beneath an Oil-Dark Sea. On Tuesday, I finally finished reading through all the stories – there are twenty-nine that made the cut, plus a poem. Now, all the line edits have to be made, and Sonya will be reading over the ms., as well, but first I need to fix the problems I discovered. Yesterday I began working on the little notes that come after each story, and I still have to write the dreaded Introduction. And there's Other Work. And we're supposed leave for Manhattan on Tuesday for my dreaded fucking dreaded, dratted fucking dreaded birthday. Fifty. Get your affairs in order. The ride's almost over, and if it's not, it might as well be. One more reason to consider getting off at the next exit. Yeah, I'm one of those people.
Haven't you missed me?
Also yesterday, we saw Gareth Edwards' Godzilla. I loved his Monsters (2010), and I loved the trailers I saw for his remake of Godzilla. The trailers suggested a dark, dark film, possessed of powerful mood and a definite point of view. However, neither of those things can be said of the film I saw yesterday. I'm still not entirely sure what I thought of Godzilla. The creature design is marvelous. The opening credits are possibly the best opening credits since The Watchmen (2009). I'm sure of that much, and there are a few scenes that live up to the promise of the trailers. But I feel like the film loses its way after about half an hour. Actually, it feels like, about half an hour in, maybe less, the studio fired Edwards and hired Roland Emmerich. I found Aaron Taylor-Johnson dull as a dusty glass of water, and Elizabeth Olsen was even worse. Why do you bother to hire actors like Bryan Cranston and Juliette Binoche, then kill them off almost immediately – immediately in the case of Binoche – only to turn the film over to someone like Aaron Taylor-Johnson? I fear that was a fatal flaw. Bryan Cranston infuses his scenes with an intensity and passion missing from most of Godzilla. Oh, and Ken Watanabe (Dr. Ishiro Serizawa) delivers some of the most awful, wooden dialogue this side of anime. I don't know. Maybe my opinion will improve upon a second viewing (which won't happen until it's out on DVD), but I wanted a gut punch. I wanted another film of the caliber of Cloverfield or Monsters. This isn't a Godzilla that looks back to Ishirô Honda's original Gojira (1954), a masterpiece of light and shadow and brooding majesty. This is more like the silliness that came afterwards. Godzilla as a superhero. And maybe if the trailers had prepared me for that, I'd have enjoyed the ride a bit more. Though, if it is that sort of film, it falls far, far short of del Toro's brilliant and beautiful Pacific Rim (2013)*.
Now, I need to work.
Is this really happening?
* Giant robots as superheroes, monsters as superheroes, whatever.