This past week, I tried to re-watch two old favorites, "Boogie Nights," about the porn industry, and "The Piano Teacher," with Isabelle Huppert, a great French actress, about a sadistic piano teacher who cripples a student's hand on purpose.
In the beginning of "Boogie Nights," one of the main characters, played by Burt Reynolds, follows a bus boy into the kitchen to see if he wants to be in porn movies. Yeah, right. He says something like, "I just think there's something in those jeans that's rarin' to get out."
What BS. Obvious, stupid , unrealistic. The movie lost me there.
In "The Piano Teacher," the main character, played by Huppert, comes home and has a fight with her domineering mother. My God, what a sick little family.
I found both movies disgusting. So I turned them off. Have I changed? I don't know. But my tastes seem to have. Maybe it's hard to watch some movies twice.
What does all this mean? Maybe we bring different things to the work of art at different times in our lives. Maybe we become not a different person but a different audience. Maybe we should expect to be different and our experiences to be different.
What is that old saying? You can't go down to the same river twice.