High Fidelity
July 7, 2000

Well, I knew High Fidelity couldn't be too bad when the song "You're Gonna Miss Me" by the 13th Floor Elevators started up during the opening credits. The film is about the various failed relationships of a perpetually immature record store owner and avid collector played by John Cusack. There's a whole bunch of nifty music which makes the movie go down like buttah.

I finally no longer think John Cusack is a fetid heap of dung. I couldn't stand his acting for a very long time. He was always a character actor who never seemed able to actually play characters, he was always John Cusack (kind of like a 90's version of Clark Gable with smaller ears).

However, with this movie, as well as Being John Malkovich, he finally seems to be able to submerge his personality. Could there be an Oscar in his future? I can only wait and see like the rest of you mere mortals.

The film has a lot of fun cameos. Bruce Springsteen has a nice l'il musical number, Tim Robbins plays a very funny bit part as a long-haired new-agey guy. Al Johnson of the local Chicago band U.S. Maple has a small role as a geek who slobbers after a Captain Beefheart album. There were prolly a lot more Chicago hipsters in this movie, and if I was thirty percent hipper I'd have spotted them. Oh well.

As I've gone on about in previous reviews, the Davis is all purdy now with its red carpeting and trail mix treats and unsmelly theaters, but I gladly got a taste of the old cozy Davis Theater this night. The film caught and burned through for several minutes before anyone turned the projector off, and it took at least ten minutes to get the film fixed and running again. My God, it felt like home again.

See you at the movies. Save me the unstained seat.