Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Atlas with my sleepy sister

Having an out-of-town visitor means just a little -- or maybe a lot -- less free time. 

Sometimes, even with someone as undemanding and cool as my sister, the extra facetime just leaves you with significantly less downtime, the time in which you usually keep up your routines. This is especially the case if the person is staying with you, which is unusual for us, but which we can accommodate for just a single person by converting my office into a bedroom with a single bed.

And sometimes you don't even realize it's been an entire week since you last posted to your blog.

It hasn't been a particularly newsworthy movie week anyway, but with a little less programmed time, your mind has time to wander and think about things to write about. Not this past week.

But my sister is now away in Tasmania on a solo trip for three nights, so here I am, finally catching you up on my movie happenings.

Since I was trying to also catch up on reviewing -- I've dropped to only a single review a week for about a month now -- I scheduled myself to watch the newly released J. Lo vehicle Atlas on Netflix on Sunday night. 

Despite her spotty and jet lag-afflicted sleep schedule, my sister said she would join me for the viewing. 

My first instinct was to find something that she might be more naturally interested in, but when she said she had nothing in her personal mental queue, I just decided to proceed with Atlas -- secretly believing she wouldn't last, simply because she has been sleeping so poorly.

She didn't, in fact, last, but she did stay there on the couch the entire 118 minutes, despite snoozing for probably 65% of the movie.

This didn't bother me in the slightest, because I appreciated the social viewing time my sister wanted to engage in -- though it did make me feel like a heel for my choice of viewing, which, while not terrible, rose only to the level of mediocre in its very best moments. (I wavered between two and two-and-a-half stars on Letterboxd before going with two.)

One thing I did notice, though, is that my style for the watching of mediocre movies when I'm tired is significantly cramped when there is someone else there on the couch with me.

When I'm struggling through a movie due either to boredom or exhaustion -- the latter was more at play here -- I usually have an easy solution at my disposal: Just take a nap. Sometimes I sleep too long and end up finishing the movie the next day, and sometimes this sort of thing does play havoc with my sleep that night. But at least there is a form of sweet relief in the struggle against sleep.

But when you don't have the couch all to yourself, there's no stretching out and snuggling up with a blanket. And when there's a second person who is theoretically watching the movie, you can't pause it anyway.

Every time my sister would wake up, I thought she'd realize she was toast and just go off to bed. But no, she was determined to sit there through the whole thing, even though she must have realized she had no idea what was going on.

The other thing I thought was funny was that every time I paused it to see how much time was remaining -- which was a lot of times -- she would wake up. It was as though her mind were conscious enough to recognize that the dull roar of explosions and an over-emoting J. Lo meant that everything was on track, and she could sleep. As soon as there was a pause, her mind wondered what was going on and woke up. 

Well, I wish she had just gone to bed, because that night she woke up at 3:30 a.m. and did not get back to sleep. Did I mention jet lag had been killing her?

But at least without any pauses, I got the movie over in time to watch the Survivor finale reunion show -- which I had decided it was wise not to start at 1:30 a.m. the night before, after finally finishing the finale.

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