Pop Culture Friday: Wake Me Up, Gravity, I’m Gone Edition

11 Oct

1.    Wake Me Up by Avicii–I really like Avicii, though this is not my favorite song.  I’ve noticed a new trend in pop music moving away from dance music and towards a folkier sound, a greater earnestness.   Mostly I applaud this, because it’s far more interesting than some of the other stuff, and after the high tech bleep blop years of the last 10 years it’s nice to see things that are earthier and simpler.   However, this song still shows its pop roots, particularly in the video which has the same overbearing product placement, and a concept that’s either dumb or simple which ever way you go about it.   These two girls live in a redneck town and have tattoos that look like play symbols.   The townsfolk (who are all ugly) don’t like them.  The teenage girl goes to the city, meets a bunch of attractive people with the same tattoo and goes to an Avicii concert.  She returns to get her little sister, because they’ve found a place where they belong.   It’s a little manipulative–playing off everybody’s desire to belong someplace, even though belongingness is not reality.  On top of that, I don’t imagine the place I would belong as being filled with people just like me.   In fact, one could argue that she moved to a place where she simply becomes the townsfolk there, and someone else will be excluded.   The “Wake Me Up” lyrics seem to be about wanting to sleep through the difficult years until you are adult enough to chart your own course.   The funny thing is that this is an adolescent view on adulthood, because most adults are no more able to freely do whatever they want than kids–they just have different limitations.    There’s a new theme recently about longing to find your crew, your tribe, real people and real experiences–the longings of a generation who have lived most of their lives behind a computer screen.   It’s interesting, and though I am a bit critical of it, it’s still way better than most pop fare.

2.  Gravity–I already reviewed this movie, but watch it for God’s sake.   You won’t be sorry.

3.  Gone–by James Patterson–Patterson is a pulp thriller writer that has written dozens of books, this is number six in a series.  Here, the detective Michael Bennett has to go into witness protection with his 10 adopted children, as a terrorist kingpin in a white suit kills a bunch of people.   Wow.  I have no intention of reading this, but 10 adopted children?   That’s a lot to hide–I mean did they move him across the country?   Is it like 7th heaven with crime?  I don’t like thrillers because they reinforce suburban fears about strangers walking in and destroying your life, which, yes, can happen, though much bigger problems usually happen through people you know (just saying.)

Well America, your book is kinda blah, but the movie and the song?  No complaints here!  Keep ’em comin!

 

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