Quarantine Watch: Legion

I watched Legion last night, starring Paul Bettany. It was lousy. There are a lot of things I should have been doing with that time, but it was late, and my mind was pretty much shut off, or wanted to be.

The movie came out in 2010. Since it is still on Netflix, I’ll avoid any spoilers. Mainly because I’m not going to write much about it. It was bad.

The movie hinges on the idea of a mercurial, disappointed God. Thematically, that certainly resonates. I’ve been enjoying some of the darker memes going around the interwebs showing an angry, detached God enjoying our suffering. There’s also one of God or Jesus asking a doctor why he’s removing the tumor he put in the patient.

Obviously, I’m not a believer. I reckon one faith or spirituality is as good as the next, and I like Nicholas Kristof’s stories about the good that religions and people of faith do. Compassionate Jesus sounds like a good person. (Sure seems like there were probably a few more lepers, though.) I don’t think Scientology is any less valid than Christianity. They both require a lot of faith and the belief that we can understand a divine being’s intentions. Whatever it takes to navigate this weird existence. Unless it involves hurting others. In that case it’s a lousy belief system. I should clarify the Scientology reference, then – they definitely sound predatorial. I hear they sue at the drop of a hat, though, so if this blog disappears, you’ll know why.

I feel bad about some of Bettany’s movie choices. I think he’s potentially a very good actor, but he’s dealt with a fair share of bad scripts. His characters come off as one dimensional. I thought he was excellent in Master and Commander. I need to watch that again. In Legion, he spends most of the movie ignoring the other characters’ questions. Given his role and objective, it seems like a good, thorough heart to heart would have solved a lot of the problems or challenges.

Dennis Quaid was in the movie, too. It was a terrible bit of acting. Maybe intentionally so. If he was going for something along the lines of Michael Gross’s character in Tremors, well then ok.

I said before that I wasn’t a believer, but I do like the storytelling behind religions. Legion touches on God’s armies. I’m going way outside of my lane here, but so many of our belief systems mimic or replicate our actions. The eternal, warring battles between Good and Evil. So some of that was fun to see play out. Still, I think the Greek and Norse gods were a lot more interesting. And soap operaish.

If I’d bought a ticket and popcorn for $30, I’d be bummed out about the movie selection. But watching it in the quiet of the night in a quarantined world? I wasn’t going to really do anything with those two hours anyway.

Before I close this out, let’s talk about the wonders of cheap, wide egg noodles. I have always loved them. My mom’s a great cook, but as an idiot kid, I just didn’t know what I was missing. (In my defense, I think there are studies showing that for some kids, the taste buds just don’t want to deal with much. I think it was 20% that, 80% stubborn and difficult.) About as interesting as I wanted was tuna casserole, which was funny, because I didn’t like fish. But I loved that tuna casserole. If I recall correctly, my mom used wide egg noodles in that. Maybe it was another dish. But I’ve been a fan ever since. And the past couple of days I feasted on egg noodles. Got a lot of mileage out of that bag. The best combo was egg noodles, SeaBear lemon pepper salmon (thanks mom and dad), and pinto beans.

Read a few good articles recently. The big surprise was finding one on Yahoo. I remember the early years of the internet, the golden age of portals. Yahoo was a good page to start the day on – a quick handy digest of news and information. Then it all went downhill for Yahoo. But I really liked this article by Hannah Keyser – “If the coronavirus pandemic marks the collapse of civilization, would we know?”

I’ve been thinking a lot about themes mentioned in the article, and it reminds me of one of my favorite books – From the Holy Mountain. Learned about it on a tip from my dad as I was about to travel around the Middle East. It looks at a couple of monks in the Byzantine era, maybe the 600s? They fear that the Christian world is collapsing, and they set off to see it and mark its passing.

I was going to add in some other articles, but I think I’ll call it a day. Hope everyone is safe, and I hope no one gets offended by my ramblings above. If you find peace and comfort in religion, then that’s what matters, not some blogger’s thoughts on the topic.