Thursday, January 17, 2013

the last book I ever read (Salman Rushdie's Joseph Anton, excerpt twenty)

from Joseph Anton: A Memoir by Salman Rushdie:

It was Labor Day week, his last free time before Fury’s American publication. He met Padma in Los Angeles and they flew to Colorado, to spend her thirty-first birthday, which fell on September 1, watching movies in the mountains and walking the informal streets of the town where Butch and Sundance had robbed their first bank, having a coffee with Werner Herzog here, a chat with Faye Dunaway there. At Telluride nobody was hustling or selling and everyone was approachable. The movie polymaths Leonard Maltin and Roger Ebert, the documentary filmmaker Ken Burns and other well-informed movie folk were on hand, imparting wisdom and cracking wise. The agreed position of everyone at Telluride was that Tom Luddy knew everyone on earth. The great Luddy, Lord of Misrule and master of ceremonies, took it all in good part. Telluride was a jokey place. To ride the ski lift up the mountain to the Chuck Jones theater you had to make a Wabbit Weservation.

They saw the hit French movie Amélie with its slightly-too-sweet elements of fantasy and the Croatian No Man’s Land, directed by Danis Tanovic, which was like Waiting for Godot in a trench under fire, and Agnieszka Holland’s workmanlike, HBO-financed Shot in the Heart, an adaptation of Mikal Gilmore’s book about his murderer brother Gary. They saw three movies a day, fell asleep in some of them, and in between and after the screenings there were parties. They came down from the mountain on September 3 and eight days later it would be impossible not to remember that Edenic moment as a paradise from which not just they, but the whole world had been expelled.

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