Rules of Attraction, at its base, is a novel about communication and the inefficiency of words. Just like a quality psychedelic experience, set and setting are crucial elements with his writing. We become trapped in our personal experience of the world, each of us wandering around in our locked down boxes, misunderstanding one another as we inadvertently help to reinforce their own boxes. It follows the lives and affairs of a group of students at Camden's college in the Eighties, but don't expect to find a linear plot or a storyline whatsoever. Avery's camera moves, in the first of many complex and brilliant tracking shots, down the hallway and down the stairs to introduce us to the demonic looking Sean Van Der Beek who swigs from a bottle of Jack Daniels and scans the crowd like a vulture looking for the evenings plaything. Crucial to keep things moving, but negligible if you decide to take a fourteen-month leave of absence from Brett Easton Ellis.
In the end he felt it was too unrealistic with regard to the nudity and attitude to it and he couldn't reconcile with the fact that there was no one to like in it. It's definitely a very interesting book, from its purpose to the way it's executed. I cared so much what others thought of me, where I stood in relation to them. Go see it, but be prepared to feel nothing. Everything is meaningless and yet so stuffed with passion. High school and college years tend to spin by too quickly and are remembered in spurts like the friendships made, the crushes that came and went, the crisis of the moment that pales in comparison to anything pressing after age 27. Everything I believe in floats away when I witness him, say, eating or crossing the boundaries of a crowded room.
Two notes - the book both starts and stops in the middle of sentences which threw me when I opened it, convinced it was a misprint , and Sean's older brother Patrick pops up later as the main character in the well-known American Psycho. Sean begins narrating his final thoughts only for them to end prematurely as the film cuts to the end credits, which are run backwards. But like much of Ellis's writing, the characters leave a lot to be desired in the end, we care about them about as much as they care about anything but their own pleasures. A theme that pops up in Easton Ellis's later works. I imagine this book would read a lot differently in your twenties, than your thirties or forties. I tried to enjoy this.
Every now and then, a minor character tells their story from their perspective through their own little mini vignette. They touch on a lot of the same themes, but Ellis does it with a lot more subtlety and grace. A bruised and beaten Sean is shown drinking a whole bottle of , tearing up a series of purple letters, before approaching and having sex with a blonde girl at the party. I came out of there thinking that perhaps they would offer me some reimbursement for my time. It seems to lean heavily on the 'shock value' of the characters' lives filled with casual sex and drug use.
I thought it was the only one that captured the sensibility of the novel in a cinematic way. Surprisingly these are not 1 dimensional characters, they are unique onto themselves, and give the novel shape and structure. Writers Ellis, Jonathan Lethem, and Jill Eisenstadt all attended the very expensive Bennington College in Vermont. It is then revealed that, rather than having sex with the blonde girl as he does in the intro, Sean has an epiphany, reconsiders and he instead leaves his drink and exits. While he seemed the most sane out of the three main characters, I think it may be possible that he was the most insane.
He breezes past topics like suicide and abortion which, when you give the way they're treated some thought, make you sick. Do you really like those boring, naive, coy, calculating girls or is it just for sex? Where re-invented American Psycho as an elegant comic horror film, Roger Avary, who wrote and directed The Rules of Attraction, dives headlong into the depravity roiling in the student body of the fictional Camden College. I came across The Rules of Attraction at a local thrift shop and I recognized the authors name which helped in my decision to pick it up. The apathy Ellis invokes in his readers, shows in his characters, is still masterfully done. However, on the whole it feels very much like a product of the era in which it was written, much like some of the films spawned by Ellis books are quintessentially 80s movies Less Than Zero, American Psycho, which has the 80s yuppie consumerism as it's main theme even though it wasn't filmed until the late 90s.
This was uncommon because whatever, it was just sex, we didn't wait around for each other. I can't imagine wanting to read this book, if my life was like this, and I can't imagine wanting to read this book if my life was thankfully nothing like this. Sometimes I think you have. It is very hedonistic and self involved, which appealed to my self involved 19 year old self. It's an endless loop of drugs, sex, and parties. I opened it up in the middle while eating a frozen dinner and drinking watermelon flavored Smirnoff.
It has no plot, it begins and ends in the middle of a sentence, there are too many characters strewn about, too many labels, too many songs, too many places. No two people are going to have the exact same interpretation of a moment. The Rules of Attraction mainly follows three members of a love triangle - Lauren, Paul, and Sean - while fleshing out the story with some interjections from ot Although I've always intended to read Ellis' American Psycho, I read this book today in an entirely unintended way my Little's fiance brought two books with him to Ohio State University's graduation ceremony and he let me borrow the one he wasn't reading. Sean, still believing Lauren wrote the purple letters, misinterprets the unnamed girl's suicide note and assumes Lauren never wants to be with him. After stealing drugs from dealer Rupert, Sean tries to speak to Lauren again, asking only to know her.
This, to me, is unfortunately not one of these books. I handed it back to the boy, along with a drawing I made for him. Like Movies like rules of attraction Nation of Thousands, I feel like this minute missed it's spot because of it's wastage strategy. The Rules of Attraction is definitely very risque and slightly over the top, but that's part of what makes it so alluring. It starts as a split screen sequence that follows Van Der Beek and Sossaman in two seperate tracking shots as they get moving early on a Saturday morning, each navigating the beautiful sun drenched campus, Sossaman even stops to smoke a joint with her lecherous professor an excellent cameo from Eric Stoltz who partnered with Avery as the lead in Killing Zoe and memorably played the heroin dealer in Pulp Fiction, a sequence Tarantino reportedly wrote for Stoltz based on his heroin fueled sequences in Zoe. It seems to lean heavily on the 'shock value' of the characters' lives filled with casual sex and drug use. Wandering through a library or a book shop, even 20 years from now, you will see this book and remember how strange and dark and pointless and sad it was.
Much like Arronofsky's magnificent Requiem for a Dream or my previous spotlight film Elephant, The Rules of Attraction will cut through the fog and break your heart because of how effectively the elements of performance, music, writing and directing gel together. I loved the book during my Brett Easton Ellis, everything from the cinematography, the dialogue and that open-ended ending, it's something I loved watching and re-watching throughout my undergrad years. The highlight of the year. People who did not like this book simply did not understand it. You end up rooting for the sleaziest of antagonists—nobody in Camden deserves redemption and most actions taken are wholly despicable. I do believe there is literary collusion going on.