29.5.12

American Psycho/American Psycho/24 Hour Psycho

So Deborah read American Psycho, and then I read it, because as much as I love horror movies, I've never quite red a book that was horror. It was a great book, but eventually pretty exhausting. It had a ton of talking about labels,

"Hamlin is wearing a suit by Lubiam, a great-looking striped spread-collar cotton shirt from Burberry, a silk tie by Resikeio and a belt from Ralph Lauren. Reeves is wearing a six-button double-breasted suit by Christian Dior, a cotton shirt, a patterned silk tie by Claiborne, perforated captoe leather lace-ups by Allen-Edmonds, a cotton handkerchief in his pocket, probably from Brooks Brothers; sunglasses by Lafont Paris lie on a napkin by his drink and a fairly nice attaché case from T. Anthony rests on an empty chair by our table. I'm wearing a twobutton single-breasted chalk-striped wool-flannel suit, a multicolored candy-striped cotton shirt and a silk pocket square, all by Patrick Aubert, a polka-dot silk tie by Bill Blass and clear prescription eyeglasses with frames by Lafont Paris."

Some pretty grotesque descriptions of murders that you just didn't want to read through after a while. Don't get me wrong, the build up to the first murder was excellent, and when it happened you were happy to finally see Patrick act upon his insane desires. 

"I've sprayed Mace into her eyes, mouth, into her nostrils, I place a camel-hair coat from Ralph Lauren over her head, which drowns out the screams, sort of. I keep shooting nails into her hands until they're both covered - nails bunched together, twisted over each other in places, making it impossible for her to try and sit up."

I mean, without giving too much away, Patrick really just came off as a petty wealthy person who cared more about his business cards than the well being of humanity. Anyway, this was my favorite part, and to me, made the whole book worth it, 

"I even dragged a beached jellyfish back to the house and microwaved it early one morning, predawn, while Evelynslept, and what I didn't eat of it I fed to the chow."

This made him seem the most insane to me, eating a jellyfish? That image is too good. After reading Deborah and I watched the movie! Which was full of Christian Bale looking good, but you know, he is supposed to look great.



The movie was dated, which was fine, and left out some of the more fun parts of the book (like the jellyfish). It wasn't as bloody as I would have hoped, and nearly all the murders that they did take from the book were slightly different (to be expected) but overall fun to watch because the dialogue was good and the casting was even better.  Anyway, all of this American Psycho Business really made me think of this article I read about 24 Hour Psycho, Douglas Gordon's piece where he took Hitchcock's Psycho and slowed it down to 2 frames per second, making it last 24 hours. 


Here is a little clip of that. I guess it was at MoMA in NY about 5 years ago, bummer! I haven't seen it in person but I imagine my response would be similar to that of the person who uploaded this video, "Douglas Gordon rocks my world yo." Yes, and now I just want to view this piece somewhere.  Gordon says about the work, 

"24 Hour Psycho, as I see it, is not simply a work of appropriation. It is more like an act of affiliation... it wasn't a straightforward case of abduction. The original work is a masterpiece in its own right, and I've always loved to watch it. [...] I wanted to maintain the authorship of Hitchcock so that when an audience would see my 24 Hour Psycho they would think much more about Hitchcock and much less, or not at all, about me..."

Well that's nice of him, I always appreciate when artists make it less about them and more about the work. (How it should be?) He also says,

"The exhibition begins with 24 Hour Psycho (1993), a slowed-down version of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 film Psycho. A different take on a familiar classic, it introduces many of the important themes in Gordon's work: recognition and repetition, time and memory, complicity and duplicity, authorship and authenticity, darkness and light."

So many themes going on in this work! I'd even suggest that many of those themes are present in American Psycho.  Repetition definitely, nearly every act that happens in that novel after a while feels repetitive. Complicity of the characters who seem completely uninterested in any affairs that don't involve how others perceive their wealth.  

Thinking about time and memory never fails to make me at least a little sentimental. I've been in NY for 9 months. 

1 comment: