IT'S MELANCHOLY, DAN.
|Jan 30||Public post|
The Oscars are coming up soon, and I'm sure there are some great films, beautiful films involved. I bet everyone who's seen Can You Ever Forgive Me? just loved it. I know that Roma will be as moving as anticipated once I finally see it. Indeed, The Favourite was a real wild ride and Black Panther is the rare nominated film that you might actually want to watch outside of an airplane.
But all of those films should consider themselves lucky that they came out in 2018 — because Sundance just dropped the best film of 2019.
No other premiere this year could hope to be more gripping and all at once shattering in its depiction of precarious patience; no more nuanced tale of familial frustration has ever been set to film, nor likely shall it ever be again.
I am, of course, speaking of a clip from this Hollywood Reporter interview with Velvet Buzzsaw director Dan Gilroy, and the starring cast, most especially: Jake Gyllenhaal and Jake Gyllenhaal's chunky-knit sweater. It is 15-seconds-long. I have it watched upward of 300 times…
The clip was first brought to my attention by Vulture writer Hunter Harris who, in general, keeps a close tabs on hot, sassy men, for which I am very grateful.
The hot, sassy man of the hour — nay, millennium — is Jake Gyllenhaal, who has had it. It's worth noting that Jake Gyllenhaal and Dan Gilroy are frequent collaborators, and so Jake must surely enjoy working with Dan. But it seems that after a full day of hearing the same stories over and over, and apparently, the same word mispronounced over and over, JG’s shade fuse is short.
I will attempt to explain the perfect content of this clip, but: I must implore you to watch it with your own eyes. I don't know if I should show my cards like this, but I can see what you click on here, friends. I rarely look at that data because the idea that I've ever done anything embarrassing in my entire life—linking to something that a single person wouldn't find interesting counts as embarrassing! the mind is a wonderful thing!—makes me want to eat my own hair.
So, I know that you can’t watch every YouTube-of-a-Vine made by a teenager in 2013 that I link to in a 6,000 word article, and I totally get that, but…
I must urge you to plug your little earbuds in (or pluck your AirPods from the cup holder of your Peloton bike if you're someone who lives in a mansion and eats rubies with your breakfast oats, or whatever) and watch the link in the tweet above. The YouTube video will do in a pinch, but it does have an extra 10 seconds at the front and back that is not solely devoted to highly successful man mispronouncing a word within an inch of its life, and being subsequently reprimanded by his own snarky muse.
Jake Gyllenhaal thought that wearing a cozy, lilac-hued sweater could help him get through this day of hearing and telling the same anecdotes over and over at various press interviews, but he was wrong. The only thing that would get him through promoting his second feature film with director Dan Gilroy — who is also, apparently, his dad — was finally putting his foot down. Let me set the stage:
Dan Gilroy is explaining that in his film Velvet Buzzsaw, he wanted to show a different side of actor Rene Russo, for example, that she’s "soulful, spiritual—she has a touch of mil-ONK-a-lee once in a while." Jake Gyllenhaal, the most tired man who has ever walked this planet, cannot let this parody-esque pronunciation pass:
“It's melancholy, Dan.”
Dan Gilroy tries to laugh it off : "Oh, it’s melancholy! I always get that word wrong." But Jake is not having it — always getting that word wrong is precisely the problem, Dan!
“That is NOT the first time today.”
Not the first time today?! Jake Gyllenhaal has remained hot throughout, like, six significantly different phases of his movie star career, but I think exasperated-grown-son-in-an-androgynous-sweater-who-can't-take-anymore-of-his-dorky-dad's-bullshit might just be my favorite.
What's most incredible about this pronunciation is just how hard Dan goes for it, KNOWING that “melancholy” is a word he struggles with. Every time I say "niche," I flinch, and that's just one syllable — I can mumble and get away with it! [Ed. note: She has not, nor will she ever, get away with it.]
Everyone has a person in their life that they love dearly, but who still puts their eyes on a constant rotation to the ceiling the moment they start trying to tell a story. That person is almost 100 percent of the time, an older man. Jake Gyllenhaal is a frequent collaborator with Dan Gilroy, so he clearly enjoys working wit him — but this is the face of a person who is just waiting for his dad to annoy him.
And while the thrust of the focus is on Jake Gyllenhaal’s looming shade, when you watch the video for the second-through-four-hundredth time, you realize that everyone knows what's coming. But they're not just waiting for Dan Gilroy to say milonkali…they're waiting for Jake Gyllenhaal to hear Dan Gilroy to say melownkalay.
Look at Billy Manussen just ready for big brother Jake to blow up. He knows what's coming…
Rene Russo has heard this anecdote about herself so many times, she's mouthing along with Dan Gilroy who, by the way, is her husband. THAT is the face of the woman who knows her husband does not possess the ability to say "melancholy," but who still can't believe it every time he does it all over again…
And who finds how much it annoys her children hilaaaarious. "You're too good," she whispers, slapping Jake Gyllenhaal on the leg as he seethes. Zawe Ashton is the one who finally lets out an audible cackle at the absurdity of malanckaly, and I think I appreciate her middle sister vibe the most…
I would want to be the inscrutable Jake Gyllenhaal who corrects Gilroy in a millisecond flat, but no doubt I would just be snickering in the background. Even demure Natalia Dyer who has maybe been sleeping with her eyes open to get through this, finally breaks at Jake's deadpan correction.
But my favorite part—my absolute favorite part—of this perfect piece of cinema, is Dan Gilroy just trying to move right on with the confidence of a rich white man who can get away with mispronouncing “melancholy” if he wants to. But Jake G said: Not today old man! We are putting an end to this right here, right now.
That! Is! Not! The! First! Time! Today!
Jake Gyllenhaal: our sassy queen, our petty prince, our patron saint of tired. I don't know why this video tickles me so, but I do know that I can no longer say “melancholy” correctly on the first try. Dan Gilroy has invaded my mind just as he has invaded Jake Gyllenhaal's, and I can only hope that on a week like this one, where it's only Wednesday and I'm already feeling mighty weary, I can turn it around as purposefully as Jake Gyllenhaal sighing…
Indeed — it is melancholy, Dan.