In talking to a friend about The Departed, which I thought was just terrific, our conversation turned to the Scorsese oeuvre in general (he wanted to know if it was like GoodFellas--quite different, in my estimation, particularly in its tone and visual style). I realized that it was two Scorsese films that changed forever the way I looked at movies.
Before, it was mostly story, theme, character. After seeing The Color of Money (minor Scorsese, I know, but one of my favorites) and Taxi Driver, I found myself mesmerized by the image. You know the way Scorsese will sometimes cut away from a shot of the main action to linger on a particular detail (in both these films, it happened to be shots of hands--Travis Bickle making an expansive gesture over the desk of the Cybill Shepherd character, or the title shots, I think it was, in The Color of Money)? These moments irrevocably changed the way I saw movies.
I had a similar experience in high school with literary reading--when my English teacher pointed out how the frame narration in Heart of Darkness worked. I would like to know from my readers if they have had similar moments, where a light went on and you suddenly had new tools for apprehending things.
Update: Runner's World. Running son ran in the State XC meet yesterday. Despite having had some bad garlic bread ("It was more bread-garlic, Mom," he told me; "I'm afraid to burp") at the team pasta dinner the night before, and therefore being afflicted with a dire digestive tract situation, he came in 34th in a large field, with a time of 17:01. (For the sake of comparison, last year he ran the same course at about 17:45, coming in about 60th.) He ran a terrific first mile again, though I don't have an exact time to report. We all feel he could have taken 20 seconds off that time had he been feeling better. I will report periodically on his winter running--he'll be training all year round now.