December 28, 2010 1:30 AM

I feel like I've been talking a lot about movies lately. And since nobody seems to have publicly stated it though it's plainly obvious, I'll just say it for the record: Hollywood has run out of ideas. Not really news, per se, but has anyone noticed how big American movies can be typified into one of five kinds? 1) high-contrast, dark-blooded action movies, 2) coming-of-age/what-a-funny-family comedy-dramas, 3) brittle, CGI-riddled fantasies (with 3a. sub-category, dream-state/metaphysical wet dreams that seek to reproduce The Matrix's success), 4) superhero or cartoon movies, 5) pointless remakes and/or reboots of movies. I think what pains me the most are the remakes, and frustratingly numerous they are, especially those that are simply rehashes that pander to brain-dead American audiences who refuse to read subtitles, respond to anything that doesn't have explosions or shock edits, or have a memory of anything more than 10 years old.

(As a side note, I wouldn't bother to go see Black Swan, unless you're into self-mutilation and brutalistic tone that Darren Aronosfky's all about. There are some good shots, but the symbolic interplay of good side/dark side, white swan/black swan is DOA.)

Winter has definitely come, and, with many of the students and townies gone for the holidays, a dose of loneliness. I've come to appreciate the desolation; it's easy to feel oversaturated. But I won't mind it when they come back, either.

I drew a few pictures today, of an actual person, which is a first in a good while. I've long avoided realism in my drawing, maybe because I feel it belies the idea of perfect representation as art, and also because I think it's kind of boring. I may give it a try again, though, maybe even get some nice paper for it.

Probably the nicest thing I have going for me now is my recently rebuilt bicycle. A well-maintained, clean drive train is a magnificent experience, let me tell you, especially after riding my last chain ring into a circular saw. Best $240 I've ever spent.