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About E.Lerner

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  1. And both scenes feature a Deckard!
  2. I suppose I specifically had Paul and Casey's arguments and definitions in mind, but especially I'd love to know what being on Team Sanity means to you.
  3. First, I want to say the entirety of questionmarks post is amazing and is 99% of what I wanted to say in defense of Team Fred before I even got to the boards. Thank you, and thanks to all of the other posters here who have been candid about their personal relationships to the super deep themes of mental illness, misogyny and abuse that are all over this zany(?) kids(?) movie. I think the overarching elements of magical realism and imaginative mental spaces more-or-less paper over the logistical question of whether Fred is his own entity or an aspect of Lizzie's psyche. The fact that Fred was revealed to be a storybook character in the original ending, explaining why Mickey's daughter also knows his name and what he looks like, would have answered this pretty neatly, but I don't think it needs to be engaged on that level to resolve the main issue I think Team Sanity has with him. My sense is that the fear and distrust of mental illness is at the heart of Team Sanity's instinct that Fred must be his own entity. An on-its-face reading of the movie where Fred is an aspect of Lizzie's personality would inarguably lead to the conclusion that Lizzie isn't merely working out the gender-based repression she's experienced as child, but that she is literally psychotic and a danger to herself and others. Fred cannot be an agent of liberation and self-actualization if he's actively destroying Lizzie's life and her relationships. Despite (or maybe because) being on Team Fred, I think one of the flaws of the movie is that it treats mental illness pretty flippantly. But I don't think Fred being an avatar of Lizzie's mental illness, rather than simply being her id, invalidates any of the points June or Jason were making. Just the opposite, really — the Fred parts of Lizzie's psyche can indeed be very problematic, even life-threateningly dangerous, but they are still a valuable part of her that she needs to learn to control. Polly, by forcing her daughter to fully repress and ignore those symptoms, is doing real, lasting, traumatic harm, rather than getting her daughter the mental help she needs. I think the way to resolve this for Team Sanity is not to just say "it's a movie" but to say "it's an allegory." Lizzie is explicitly an unreliable narrator, and I think that gives us license to say some of the havoc "Fred" causes is also exaggerated. For example, her dad may have called the police when she was playing "burglars" but they didn't really almost shoot him or have him arrested — that's just what it felt like to her as a child. Or as an adult, she may not have literally sank her friend's houseboat, but accidentally caused some major damage that insurance eventually covered. Lizzie has been told from an early age that her mental illness ruins everything, including her parents' marriage and her mother's love for her. It's totally believable to me that she sees everything through that catastrophic lens.
  4. John just called me Eric (?) Lerner on the mini-episode, so we're deep in the rabbit hole on this one.
  5. It seems like a pretty high-concept joke to be deployed in the middle of a song, but I think there's at least the possibility she was making a reference to Paul's routine butchery of people's names.
  6. E.Lerner

    Episode 218 - Deadfall (w/ Chelsea Peretti)

    I know several people have brought up Tony Clifton as Cage's reference point for Eddie, but is it possible that we was going for The Joker? Cage is a noted comic book obsessive — he has/had a multi-million dollar collection, including a lot of vintage DC stuff — so he'd be deeply familiar with the source material. Points in favor: Largely green and purple wardrobe Insane smile and laugh has been disfigured in some way — disguising his appearance with wig/glasses/fake voices/etc. Carries a deck of cards consisting solely of jokers All of this, plus his outsized presence in what is otherwise a fairly stock noir/small-time-crook setting makes me think that was the overall vibe he was going for. Thoughts?
  7. E.Lerner

    Episode 218 - Deadfall (w/ Chelsea Peretti)

    Was this right around when The Disaster Artist was coming out? We were in the same showing if an extremely drunk girl barfed in the front row right as everyone was getting to their seats.
  8. E.Lerner

    Episode 218 - Deadfall (w/ Chelsea Peretti)

    Now that we know what an actual deadfall is, have we gotten any closer to identifying what it means in the context of the movie? It does sound like the name of a con pulled from Tim Robinson's box of gangster movie props, but I'm pretty sure both Jameses Coburn call the con they pull with Biehn something else. I guess it could be a reference to the meta-con, since Biehn gets trapped in it after he thinks his father is dead, and is pulled in further by falling in love with the plant. The utter stupidity of that as an explanation actually makes me think I might be on the right track here.
  9. E.Lerner

    Episode 217.5 - Minisode 217.5

    Very excited for this episode. Cage's portrayal of The Joker is up there with Ledger's as far as I'm concerned. Joaquin has got some big shoes to fill!
  10. Johnny Castaway, 1992, "the world's first story-telling screen saver."
  11. I don't have it handy, but I recall the line about the step-father's profession at the end was that he was "in construction." I didn't take that to mean that they weren't actually wealthy, but rather that the step-father was mobbed-up — which would explain his overall affect, propensity to violence, and the inability for the son/mother to seek "justice" through traditional channels.
  12. This is basically the twist of a certain Black Mirror episode, but instead of a holonovel/game, the program is a modeling simulation — calculating probabilities, suggesting possible outcomes, and informing decision-making in the real world. (I never watched it, but the finale of Enterprise takes place in one of these, in the holodeck of the Enterprise D during the events of the TNG episode "The Pegasus") That's what I keep gravitating to when I try to explain what the kid was trying to accomplish with this game — his way of asking his dead dad what to do about his abusive new dad. But the problem I keep coming up against is whether Dill has agency or whether he is essentially being controlled by his son. I just don't know if there is an internally consistent answer there.
  13. Also, there are a lot of dumb mistakes that can be lampshaded by the universe having being created by a disturbed 12-year-old, but I object to the idea that this kid knows that a Swizzle is an authentic, rum-and-bitters-based Caribbean cocktail, but not enough about it to know it's a tall drink with a lot of ice, fruit juice, falernum and an eponymous stirring stick. Looks like he got his Swizzle recipe from this woman:
  14. In the (psychic, question mark?) phone call at the end, Dill gestures at the moral of the story, which is that the murder wasn't a good thing to do but it was the right thing to do. But if Dill is ultimately the product of a deterministic universe created by the kid, this is really just a post hoc justification for a decision the kid has already made. Are we as an audience supposed think he made the right or wrong choice? Both the Dill construct and the kid are ostensibly rewarded for their parallel murders by being virtually reunited, so I'm guessing Knight's intention was to convey the former but wow is it a mess.
  15. This was my interpretation, and I think it's borne out by some of that out-of-nowhere voiceover that gestures at how consciousness might be an emergent property of this kind o code. But as the gang touched on several times — and what was really at the heart of June's confusion whether this was a video game at all — it's not clear whether the son is playing his own game. Like, when you see screenshots that are anything but code, it appears to be a relatively simple-looking first-person view of a person fishing off a boat, which suggests he's playing as Baker Dill. But if you take everything that's happening in Plymouth as how it appears to Baker Dill, and not how the kid sees it, you're positing that Dill is an AI consciousness, not as an avatar the kid is merely piloting around. That distinction is super important because it's the answer to the question of "who makes the decision to kill Abusive Greek Dad?" It seems to me that the kid has already made up his mind and is guiding Dill to that conclusion. Which means Dill doesn't have agency and there really are no consequences for the moral dilemma he's placed in (especially the last minute wrinkle with Lucky Gas Pumper, as you said earlier). But all this really goes back to what Jason said at the top of the audience Q&A — if the questions are about the internal logic of the video game world, we can just stop right now because there simply aren't answers to be found.