Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Some Thoughts on Reality Bites

Scene: Three bloggers chat about the mid-90's classic, Reality Bites. (as with all chat posts, try to avoid the [sic])

Dave: Watched Reality Bites last night...early 90's are high-larious...

Liz: Oh yeah. The high wasted jeans? Priceless

D: High wasted jeans, self-loathing grungers, AIDS paranoia...and disturbing lack of text messaging and YouTube...

L: It always amazes me how many situations in movies and TV aren't valid anymore, because people have cell phones now. There's like 10 episodes of Seinfeld that revolve around them missing each other at movie theaters and in parking garages

D: You are right though, cell phones completely invalidate a lot of those Seinfeld eps. Who sits at home and waits for the phone to ring anymore?

L: Yeah. And who answers phones not knowing who's calling you?

D: “Hello? Oh thank god it's YOU!"

Like the whole thing at the end where Winona is looking for Ethan Hawke because she does not know where he is...the dude is a struggling musician in a crappy band. Just look them up on Myspace for chrissake!!

The people in that movie were like the first to have such high amount of angst towards retail jobs.

L: Now we'd all kill for retail jobs. (Well, those of us without normal jobs, which will be all of us soon enough)

D: Yeah, people would murder Janeane Garofalo to be manager at the Gap...and Winona Ryder would not be valedictorian, an Asian would have beat her out for sure...

L: Yeah I think Indians and Asians definitely have the Valedictorian market cornered

Red: That movie is a gem. You know what I noticed though, after watching it recently? Everyone in that beezy is a zillion times better than Winona

L: Winona's awesome though. Don't speak ill of Winona.

R: I like Winona, but she really is the weak link in that movie. Sorry, Liz.

L: Fine. Whatever. Haha you're probably right, I haven't seen it in a while

[Editor’s Note: I’m totally right]

D: Dude, she wasn't THAT bad...she did a great job of smoking cigs and having s3x with two guys... Oh yeah, and the freakin’ BIG GULPS were killing me...nobody actually drinks those anymore, do they?

R: I didn't say she was terrible! Just compared to the rest of the cast she's a bit lacking. Geez!!

They still love their Super Big Gulps in Klan-Tee.

[Editor’s Note: Santee (aka Klan-tee) is one of the super redneck parts of San Diego]

L: Totally ... the fat parts of America(JK Santee! Love you babe!)

D: Santee HAS to have the most people named "Cody" in all of SD

L: I imagine its also a place with a lot of TruckNutz

D: It HAS to be...10,000 Points to Santee resident with both TruckNutz and Yosemite Sam mudflaps...

R: God. Trucknutz should be they are in Florida.

D: Good thing government is busy creating important legislature against the root of all of society's ills: TRUCKNUTZ

L: TruckNutz are pretty much the new mullet when it comes to defining white trash, I think

D: They have to was the Calvin pissing on whatever sticker for a while but I think TN takes the cake...

Ethan Hawke was also sporting the "wannabe chollo buttoning only the top button of a dress shirt" look during one scene…Thoughts?

R: Ethan Hawke is perfection in RB. Everything he does is awesome.

L: Hey, That's my Bike = Best Band Ever

D: See...we are on opposite sides of this movie...that guy was way too emo for me in that...

L: I agree. I was being sarcastic about the band. Ethan Hawke actually kind of bugs me in RB. I hate how a guy can be a dick through a whole movie, but everyone forgives him because he had daddy issues or whatever.

R: Ethan is the quintessential bad boy who finally comes around in RB. That character alone sums up why so many women are delusional about love.

I just love all his great lines. Like when he answers the phone and says "You've reached the Winter of our Discontent." Hilarious.

D: I know, what a douche...and meanwhile the normal guys in that movie get totally shafted...

R: I mean, how many times have they told that story: Girl has to choose between boy she really loves, but is an a-hole or the guy who really loves her, but is kinda dorky. The thing about RB, though, is it's like that cliché perfected.

L: True. And Ben Stiller fucks up and gives her a legitimate reason to be mad

R: See, I always have a problem with that. I don't think what BS did was so bad. I mean, you know if you sell your crappy student doc to an MTV like company they're gonna totally change it. And if he genuinely didn't know...I dunno. I always think she's a little harsh on him...and it's really just a plot device to ensure they break up.

D: Yeah, I kind of agree with you on that part...I mean, he's still doing her a favor, trying to get her out of the pathetic unemployed state she's in...

L: Yeah you have a point, I guess it wasn't that bad. They just needed to break them up so she could be with Ethan Hawke.

The "winter of our discontent line" is great. That movie has a lot of quotable phrases

R: Yeah. Janeane G gets a lot of them. I love when she tells Winona, "You are IN the Bell Jar"

E: hahaha, and her speech about how she's the AIDS character on Melrose Place

R: That's my absolute favorite part. That whole scene with the 2 of them at the diner...classic.

Plus, that movie makes Houston look cool...which is, like, impossible.

L: Yeah I always thought it was random that it took place in Texas. Ripping off Richard Linklater I guess

R: The chick that wrote it is from Houston. The DVD commentary is actually pretty good. It's the writer and Ben Stiller and you can just tell having that movie made was, like, the highlight of her life.

D: Oh that's cool. It would probably be the highlight of mine, too.

L: Oh I always thought Stiller wrote and directed it. Sorry, Girl Who Wrote It!

And scene


The Vegetable Assassin said...

I hate to be a bitch (hell no, I don't) but I hate Winona. In anything. Girl cannot act. She's the same in every single goddamn movie and every time I just want someone to shoot her. Even in "Heathers" which I loved, she was the same annoying harpy.

I haven't seen RB in a long time but right now just the thought of Ethan Hawke, Winona and Ben Stiller (spit!) in one movie makes me feel all agitated.

I liked the conversation though. I'm happy you're all still nuts.

sid said...

Have never watched this movie and with my short attention span I couldn't even bother to read your entire conversation. So all I got from this is that various Seinfeld episodes are no longer valid due to the appearance of cell phones.

words words words said...

Hate this movie. I felt embarrassed to be a member of Generation X and associated with people so far up their own asses.

Love Winona.

Ethan Hawke is the weak link in everything he is in.

I haven't seen it since it came out, so this could all be completely wrong.

BeckEye said...

I couldn't read this whole thing because...


Yes, they all crossed WAY over the line in the sands of coolness in that flick. (I remember that line because it was the one time I laughed.)

I'm with Fran. I was embarassed to be considered part of that generation. It's like they were trying to make fun of the excesses and "MTV culture" while being part of it at the same time. It's interesting that Ben Stiller was cast as the douche and he's the most likable person in the movie, because he's the only one with a job who isn't whining about what the world owes him or why his life is so gosh-darn hard.

I'm sorry for the rant. But like I said...

Malcolm said...

What I didn't like about Reality Bites is that it tried too hard to be cool and ironic. If you didn't know any better, you'd walk away from RB thinking that all so-called Gen-Xers did was whine and sit around singing TV themes. The most blatant example that I recall is the scene where some of the characters were playing the "Good Times" game. What the fuck was that all about?!

red said...

Wow! I had no idea people had such strong feelings about Reality Bites! I hate to say this, but I think this is an age thing...

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

I have never seen TruckNutz. Thank you for teaching me about a little piece of Americana that I really didn't need to know about.

Liz said...

If all you got out of this was TruckNutz, I think we served our purpose.

Yeah, I don't want to play the "age card," but I think Red and I are a few years younger than some of the haters (sorry if I'm wrong). Maybe this was much more entertaining for people who were in junior high/early high school when it came out than to those in late high school/college?

Malcolm said...

I think one's opinion of "Reality Bites" is likely based on age. For those who were in their teens when it came out, they may have said, "I can't wait until I'm in my 20s because these characters are cool". Because I was in my 20s at the time and the movie was about my "generation", I took a more cynical view of it.

words words words said...

I think the age thing is probably a valid point.

Now hold still while I suck the life force out of the lot of you and keep my brittle body alive for another week!

pistols at dawn said...

I saw it in the theater when it came out and never felt that it was worth revisiting, but I do remember that Young Me thought the Evan Dando cameo was fantastic.

Le Meems said...


I need to go get a Slurpee, now.

Dave H said...

See, Le Meems gets are all supposed to LAUGH!