Ode, Dear

Moviestar!Jake at Zodiac's Cannes photocallLoot at you, mister Too Good to be True!
With each passing day grows the illusion that I know you.
What you are to me, the eye cannot see,
though you shall never hear me complain of the view.

Thus is my feeling for you misunderstood.

My movie star, to me you are
before all else, a man, and human, and imperfect and good.
You are no hero, nor would I wish you so.
Never would I demand more of you than I do of myself.

Worship and reverence are not part of who I am.

Your paradox is this, that you are
unreachable, and different, and too lovely
and pedestrian, and sensible, and silly.

And so what is wrong with writing odes to a man
who is not greater than the rest, but in the ways that matter to me?
Should I not adore you because you are human?

For I can think of no better reason to love a man.

Photo: IHJ.


Any minute now

Jake signs autographs at the Brokeback Mountain TIFF screeningOne unfortunate side effect of Jake's summer vacation has been the uninterrupted propagation of the same old assorted rumors and gossip about his personal life by people who pretend their word is fact. I suppose in a way I do sympathize with them--they are just as susceptible as I am to Jake withdrawal. Perhaps they are hoping that such an unrelenting assault on that wall of official silence will finally prompt someone inside to make a statement. It wouldn't surprise me if they believed that, considering the delusional nature of some of their professed "news."

Jake at the TIFF screening of Moonlight Mile. What's with the cuffs?I don't need a crystal ball to confidently predict that in the next handful of days, we will suddenly have sightings and possibly photos of Jake at home in Los Angeles. With Rendition's TIFF Gala screening scheduled for September 7, Jake will be in Toronto a mere nine or ten days from now. We know how he loves to gad about the country; a rapid succession of airport appearances is all but guaranteed as he returns home, runs errands, and packs off again for the Great White North. (I just realized in writing this that Jake attended the 2005 TIFF three glorious, envy-inducing nights in a row. Where the hell was I in 2005?) I will breathe a seemingly unwarranted and preposterously overwrought sigh of relief when everyone resumes discussion of Jake's manner of dress, selection of purchases, and hairstyle of the moment...the things that matter, in other words.

Jake at the Proof TIFF screening, with such a gorgeous smile I can forgive the suitI also find it gratifying that while the news outlets seem to be calling Rendition Reese Witherspoon's new movie, once again, as in the trailer, Jake has been granted top billing in the TIFF's online listing for the film. Alphabetical preference? Not exactly, as Alan Arkin came in third. Probably doesn't mean anything to anyone else, but I like it.

Velvety moviestar!Jake at the TIFF screening of his mom's film Bee SeasonThanks again to Xenia for a couple of things: first, I have implemented those shirts inspired by your comment in a new CafePress shopfront. There's nothing earth-shattering there, and certainly nothing that could be considered "art," so no markup has been applied to any item. Someone profits, but it ain't me. Second, I have really been enjoying my rediscovered Radiohead CDs! And I haven't done a lot of searching yet, but so far what I've heard of the White Stripes has me convinced that yes, I have heard them before, and of course liked what I heard. I guess I will have to start listening to the radio again, perhaps streaming while I write at night. So many things that I have missed in my self-imposed isolation!

Also, thanks to Prophecy Girl of Jake Watch for giving Zen Gyllenhaalism a mention on the blog. And thanks to everyone else who has visited, and especially commented, so far. I'd write anyway, but it wouldn't be anywhere near as much fun without you.

All photos: IHJ.



NBC will be airing Saturday Night Live's Best of 2006/7 episode again tonight. One can never get too much dreamgirl!Jake.

Everyone has raved about this demonstration of Jake's singing abilities, not to mention those arms. Well, call me picky (because I am), but I won't be impressed until I hear him sing in his natural, gut-felt voice rather than a falsetto or a drunken cowboy bellow. He insists he can sing, and so far the closest we've gotten to what Jake really sounds like is the adorable bit from Bubble Boy when Jimmy sings the Land of the Lost theme song.

Unfortunately his voice is mostly drowned out by Dweezil Zappa's guitar track. Not that I have any problem with Dweezil or his guitar; I've always been rather fond of him in a casual way. But I'm dying to hear Jake's true singing voice, and this was almost the jackpot.

Young Jake knows exactly how sexy this looksOne night last week at the gym, my iPod cycled around to Maroon 5's "Harder to Breathe," and while Adam Levine does not appeal to me, something in his voice drips with sex. It always has, but that night it led me on an interesting mental journey spurred by the thought that perhaps Jake, having grown up in the same time and place as Levine, might have a similar style of performing. I'm not talking about stage performance because I've never seen one by Maroon 5, nor do I watch MTV these days. All I was imagining was a singing voice. And it wasn't Levine's voice; it was Jake's. And it was a potent fantasy.

Obviously my continued appreciation of Jake does not depend on hearing him sing. There was a time when I thought his speaking voice was too high--it didn't go with that body, that face. Since then I have grown to love it, his sweet, gentle, boyish voice. It soothes me, so much that many nights I play Jarhead on my DVR so that I may fall asleep to his voiceover. I'd love to hear him really sing, but even if I never do, his voice is music to me.

Photo: IHJ.


Jake and Reese in New Jersey?

We have promotion!

This morning the Courier-News Online is reporting that Rendition will be screened as part of the Filmmakers Symposium this year, somewhere between September 17 and December 4. Since these are described as previews, let's assume it will happen before October 19.

Jake with Gavin Hood on the Rendition set in MoroccoWhy is this exciting? Because the Filmmakers Symposium presents not just the films, but some of the key talent behind each picture, in a question and answer session following the screening. And look for yourself if you don't believe me, but Jake Gyllenhaal, Reese Witherspoon, and Gavin Hood are expected to attend. The symposium's director Chuck Rose cautions: "Assessing film and guest availability is often like playing the ponies. Distributors juggle their release dates to gain competitive advantages. Sure shots can be scratched at the last minute, and wonderful surprises and fantastic celebrities can pop up out of nowhere, so I try to keep the schedule as fluid as possible."

I wonder if the audience will be vetted to prevent stupid questions from coming to the mic? You know the kind I'm talking about, what with both of them in the same room. Then again, maybe it will be a nice, awkward opportunity for some scathing Gyllenhaal humor.

If only New Jersey weren't so far away from my house. I was already planning a trip around the Rendition opening weekend. I'd adjust those plans if someone at the FS could promise me a date for the screening, but I can't afford to book it (no refunds) and then find out later that Rendition has been bumped to another night. Damn, it sucks to be poor.

As recommended by BirdGirl on the JW Forums, I've been DVRing IFC's reruns of "Indie Sex" this week, and it's a wonderful little series, including commentary from Peter Sarsgaard among others. One episode dealt with the effect on the popularity and earnings of movies released under the dreaded NC-17 rating in the US. Today Guardian Unlimited revealed that another Toronto International Film Festival presentation, Ang Lee's Lust, Caution, has just won this "death knell" rating from the MPAA.

Jake Gyllenhaal and Ang Lee on the Brokeback Mountain setThis isn't the horrible news we might first perceive it to be. Focus Features has announced that they plan to buck the trend of recutting for a more acceptable R, and release the film as Lee intended it to be seen. I love you, Focus Features. Lee's reputation for creating beautiful, delicate but powerful masterpieces may be just what the industry needs to turn around the negative connotation of NC-17.

If nothing else, it's inspired me to fantasize about what the NC-17 version of Brokeback Mountain might have been like. Not that my imagination hasn't been there many times before....

Photos: IHJ.


Idol speculation

Jake Gyllenhaal clowns around with pal Austin Nichols on the Day After Tomorrow setIt's always wonderful to be reminded that Jake is on the minds of entertainment types other than the gossip mongers and paparazzi scum. This morning I found a blip by Liz Smith of the Baltimore Sun in which she speaks of a rumored movie-version of the musical-version of Sunset Boulevard:

I spoke with a top movie producer the other day, and he dismissed the latest round of interest in the movie. "Oh, please. Forget the musical....

"I say update the Billy Wilder original. Make Norma a washed-up star from the disco era. Cast Halle Berry and Jake Gyllenhaal."
Thanks, unknown top movie producer. Your random selection of Jake for the role once played by the iconic William Holden brightened my morning. Many of us Gyllenhaalics like to toss around ideas for future parts, especially remakes as they provide known characters from which to select. While I must sadly confess it has been many years since I saw the film, Joe Gillis does seem like an absolutely perfect fit for our man. But unlike the greedy and visionless studio types, I don't believe every movie needs to be remade. Modern remakes have gotten completely out of hand, to the point that Hollywood is revisiting films made in the mid-80s. Fortunately, Jake has so far demonstrated superior judgment in most of his choices, and I'm never really worried that he'll participate in something of such poor quality as to damage his impressive reputation.

Jake at the TIFF showing of ProofThen there was the suggestion by the writers at IGN that the newly released BioShock game might make a great movie starring Jake. Okay, they mentioned several potential leads, including Jake's Brokeback Mountain costar Heath Ledger. But the fact that Jake popped up on their list along with Mr. Forbes' Ultimate Star Payback himself, Matt Damon is definitely not a bad sign. Their comment: "Is Gyllenhaal ready to carry a big budget flick like BioShock? We think so." I guess this impressed me most because IGN is, well, a network for gamers, and my impression is that, like their audience, its contributors are largely male. This is a vote of hetero confidence that confirms my belief in Jake's universal appeal. No, I would not be particularly thrilled at the prospect of Jake's appearance in a video game movie, but again, I trust his judgment; he'd do it only if it was worth his time.

While neither of these remarks holds any real implications for Jake, and we remain in a lazy summer limbo wondering what his next project will be, at least I am reassured that he has not been forgotten by all but the tabloids (and of course, we, the Gyllenhaalics).

Photos: IHJ.


Ruminating and anticipating

Jake with director Gavin Hood in MoroccoAdditional photos of Jake on the Rendition set in March have appeared on IHJ. That hair is killing me. Reminder to self: put spare underwear in purse for this movie.

There is no doubt I'll be physically attracted to Douglas Freeman (I already am), but will I like him? He promises to be a departure for Jake: conservative, ambitious, buttoned-down, perhaps even suave. How different will he be from the likes of Donnie Darko or Tony Swofford? One of the many reasons I'm a Gyllenhaalic is Jake's ability to imbue every character with a tremendous dose of humanity. No matter what questionable situation the character may find himself in, I'm moved because I actually care about a person Jake has made real.

Jake Gyllenhaal, hotter than the Moroccan climateWith someone as visually striking as Jake is, it might be reasonable to think audiences would have a tough time embracing his Robert Graysmith or Harold Dobbs; what socially backward obsessive cartoonist or lovesick mediocre mathematician has ever looked like that? But Jake pulls it off expertly every time. He's so believable that he is that character as I watch.

So, will Doug Freeman, CIA operative, win my heart? I know he will.

Maybe I've lost all objectivity. I watched October Sky followed by Zodiac yesterday, and while there was arguably more subtlety and nuance required for the part of Robert Graysmith, 18-year-old Jake's Homer Hickam is more than credible sharing the screen with Chris Cooper as John Hickam. Some things you can learn with experience; some things are just about talent. I'm inclined to believe that Jake's incredible work is the result of both, but especially talent.

Photos: IHJ.

Somewhere in an alternate Gyllenverse, part I

(previously posted to the JW forums, 4/5/07)

Disclaimer: I am not a screenwriter, so please cut me an appropriate length of slack.

[SCENE: Night, interior. A hotel room, clean, but not too ostentatious. Our protagonist, an impossibly gorgeous young actor, is on his cell phone.]

J: So what did they say?

Anonymous fictitious agent (hereafter "AFA"): [on other end of phone line] Promise me you won't freak out.

J: [beat] Fuck. So that's it? Tell me what they said. [begins pacing]

AFA: I'll tell you if you promise you'll stay calm. Sit down.

J: [sighs exhasperatedly] Okay, whatever. [still pacing around room] I'm sitting.

AFA: Well...[hesitantly] They loved your reading...

J: ...But?

AFA: But...you've gotta understand, Jake, this character is a really sensitive issue...for the studio as well as the director...

J: [growing more agitated] If you don't spit it out, I'm going to start breaking shit...

AFA: [hurriedly] Okay, okay, calm down. Uh, listen... [laughs insincerely] They said you're just too good looking for the part.

J: [stops pacing, stunned to silence]

AFA: Jake? Did I lose you?

J: [sits on bed, defeatedly putting head in free hand]

AFA: Jake?? [to self] ...fucking cell phones...

J: I'm here. Are you kidding me? That's why I'm out?

AFA: I'm sorry, Jake. Fiedler said no one wants to do a movie about a mentally challenged serial rapist with a lead who makes the audience wet.

J: [shaking his head] Can't he give audiences more credit than that? That's fucking ridiculous! No one's going to be attracted to this guy!

AFA: No, his problem is that they're going to be attracted to you. Thinks the ones who don't go home feeling ashamed of themselves will be writing letters and calling because someone made a movie about a sick rapist and depicted him as "lovable" and "desirable," or something like that. You know, the same old bullshit.

J: I can't believe this is happening again.

AFA: [beat] Hey, I know you really wanted to do this--

J: [interrupting] What about makeup? [gets up, wanders over to mirror, begins making faces] Prosthetics? They could give me a harelip or something.

AFA: Not good enough. Besides, if they wanted you with a harelip, they'd get Joaquin Phoenix. He's cheaper than you.

[J pulls phone away from ear and looks at it in disbelief]

J: [back to phone] Are you serious? Doesn't anyone care about the acting?

AFA: [sighs] I'm sorry.

J: [drops back on bed, begins chewing thumb] Okay, well...Thanks, man.

[J ends the call, flops backward onto bed for a second, then gets up again, goes back to mirror]

J: [looking incredulously at his reflection] Joaquin Phoenix??

This is a little piece of satire that's been floating about in my head for a while. It occurred to me one day that Jake's appearance might be a problem in some cases. Like Chloë Sevigny said, film makers might think they have to do something to suggest he's more average looking just to make him believable as certain characters. Now, of course, we don't feel that way, because he's so good at becoming the character that we forget we're watching Jake. But what if some dumbass Hollywood suit didn't get that? This scene is what might happen.


Broadway Jake

Jake and Anna Paquin in This Is Our YouthIf Michael Riedel of the New York Post has any idea what he's talking about, Jake Gyllenhaal is confirmed to star in "Farragut North" on Broadway. This is a good news, bad news article, the only bad news being that the play is set to open "in the midst of the presidential election next fall." We were originally expecting to see it some time this fall, which then became "winter of 2008."

Jake and Hayden Christensen in This Is Our YouthThe good news, apart from Jake's being cast, is that much-respected director Mike Nichols has "quietly wrested ["Farragut North"] away from Second Stage, the off-Broadway company that was to have presented it later this year." Wait, it gets better.

Jake holds his Outstanding Newcomer award

Written by Beau Willimon (who worked on Dean's 2004 campaign), "Farragut North" is a hot property right now, with George Clooney and Matt Damon having snapped up the film rights.
Please, fates, gods, whatever entities are out there, perhaps benign, perhaps scary and Lovecraftian, please let all of this be true.

Update: Now we've got Playbill in on the act, and instead of serving as a reassuring confirmation, they've titled their article as a question: "Will Nichols Direct Country Girl and Farragut North for Broadway?" Why must you torture me in this fashion? If you read the text without regard for that silly question mark, it sounds all in the bag. I need to know now if I must begin saving money for a New York trip in 2008, or I can continue spending frivolously on multiple DVD releases of Jake's movies.

Photos: IHJ, All Stars Online.


There is no 'spoon

Inevitably, when a Gyllenhaalic uses Yahoo's news search to look for potential material for her nascent blog, the results page bouncily recommends that she also try the following search: Jake Gyllenhaal Reese Witherspoon (except today--it seems the Jessica Simpson fans have been doing more searches lately). This is the number one reason why I prefer to use Google's news search. But I digress.

Jake and friend Chris at the starting lineLately, the "news" has been pretty thin. Nowhere did they mention the most spectacular Gyllenhappening of the past week, for example. Thankfully sources like Wet Dark and Wild and Jake Watch are on the job. And thanks, Jake, for giving me this lovely reminder that I do not have to work at our annual 5K this year, since budget cuts mean there will be no 5K.

No, the only "news" I got the other day was the post by an entertainment blogger who thinks Jake is among seven stars in danger of falling off the "A-List." Someone please let this gentleman know that Jake hasn't quite made the so-called "A-List" yet, and he's got plenty of very satisfied fans who would love nothing more than to see him keep choosing roles based on what they say to him, and what he can do with them, rather than their potential for box office. There are enough of those fools already. Jake makes movies I actually enjoy (well, there was Highway...). If he took the advice of people like this guy, he'd be doing a series of soulless blockbusters until eventually he became just another greedy actor.

Next, this.

Jake, I want to have your babies.
Yes, I included it in my last post. But I'm not done enjoying it yet. And apparently I'm not the only one whose eye was caught by this, amongst the dozens of other new pictures posted alongside it over at IHJ. It was taken at the New York City premiere of Jarhead. I cannot overstate how grateful I am to Ally and Stephanie at IHJ for keeping the Jake pics coming. Without them and their secret, powerful media connections, desperate addicts like myself would not be treated to pictures from events two years in the past just at the moment when a Jake-drought is threatening to desiccate my joie de vivre and permit reality to spoil my days.

Finally, for now, I want to take a moment to say hello to my reader in Seoul, Korea. You have no idea what your faithful viewing of my blog means to me. My friends are here because they know me from other places. They felt compelled, in other words. (Now they're going to bash me for saying that.) You, on the other hand, are a complete stranger, and yet you appear to be reading my posts just about every day. It occurred to me that you might just be some kind of hiccup in a poorly-configured network, but I'm trying to be less cynical these days, so I am embracing you as a human viewer. Thank you for providing an audience.

Photos: IHJ.


Happy birthday, Swoff!

Jake Gyllenhaal as Swoff, about to cross the berm
No, not that one.

This one.

Lance Corporal Anthony Swofford
Anthony Swofford, former Marine scout/sniper and author of the bestselling Jarhead, was born on August 12, 1970 in Fairfield, California.

Like many of Jake's fans, I had not read Anthony Swofford's intensely personal Gulf War chronicle before Sam Mendes brought it to the screen. In general, I have always had a distaste for the type of guy (or girl) who wants to join the military, and in particular the Marines; Swofford knows I'm not alone, and acknowledges that he basically hid from his peers his unpopular aspiration in order to avoid ridicule. He was right. Being of the same generation, I am like those kids he went to school with who would not have understood. But perceptions can change.

Jake as Swoff, dreaming of pink mistAfter being completely fascinated and horrified by the movie, I knew I would eventually read Jarhead. It took me a while to get around to it; even after I purchased it the book sat on my bedroom floor for a month while I finished reading other recommendations. Once I finally opened it, I couldn't put it down.

In fact, after reading the last sentence, I flipped back to the beginning and immediately started again, reluctant to leave the perversely beautiful brutality of Swofford's prose and his ordeal. I have never done that before with any book. It would be glib to say that I now understand his position, but my view of low-level military personnel and those who wish to be a part of that system will never be the same. And while my understanding of the man both then and now is based upon what bits he has chosen to feed me from the dark pantry of his psyche, I won't deny feeling a profound empathy and connection with Swofford, from page one.

Jake's Swoff hits the deck under friendly fireHis style, a lyrical but concise delivery that makes all the more disarming his unrelenting honesty, has made me an instant fan. I don't know if that's because it reminds me of my writing--and I seem to be all about finding ways to love myself through others, since I can't do it directly--but reading Swofford feels like reading my own journal. Of course I have not lived anything remotely as compelling or formative as his experience, but as I follow him, I imagine myself sharing his reactions, his interpretations, nearly every opinion and emotion expressed, as if he were a version of myself in some other life.

When I first encountered Swoff, via Jake, I thought he was an immature, self-centered asshole. It turns out that 37-year-old Swofford agrees with me about 20-year-old Swoff, proof that Jake's performance was frighteningly accurate. Many viewings later, I love and feel sympathy for Jake's Swoff, as I now do the man himself. (That doesn't mean I won't exploit this opportunity to show you BareAssed!Jake. Life is too short.)

I'm also bemused by a few parallels between Jake and Anthony Swofford.

Jake Gyllenhaal with Anthony SwoffordWe all heard about how Jake chipped his tooth during shooting of the scene where Swoff takes his vengeance on Brian Geraghty's Fergus, and subsequently let himself get a bit too abusive in further takes, resulting in the two not speaking for days on the set. What I have never seen or heard anyone else mention is that Swofford also chipped his tooth on a gun, while threatening not his platoon mate but himself. This strange confluence of events can't have escaped someone like Jake, who has professed a belief in "the energy between people." Then there's one of Swofford's STA buddies who was named Atticus, either by his parents or Swofford for the sake of anonymity. Granted, I don't get out much, but that's the only Atticus I've ever encountered, outside of Harper Lee's novel and Jake's beloved German Shepherd (the latter named after the character in the former).

Anthony Swofford, from the jacket of Exit AAnthony Swofford loves to cook, specifically citing Mario Batali as a favorite source of recipes. And I can't discount the mesmerizing quality of Swofford's blue eyes; while not on the level of Jake's beauty (and no one is), Swoff does indeed appeal to me. The last time Tony Swofford was with me in the shower, he wasn't entirely Jake's Swoff.

Being impressed as I was with Jarhead, I wanted to try Swofford's fiction novel, Exit A, so Friday while I ran all over town on errands, I stopped in to the local Border's. Their online self-service station did not reveal stock status, only a probable location of "Literature: Fiction." It took me five minutes to establish that "Literature: Fiction" was bereft of Swofford, because their concept of alphabetization at this Border's apparently involves some algorithm for wrapping around multiple freestanding shelves that puts T before S. On my way out I decided to browse the 50% Off bins that I had passed as I entered, and right there in the center of the box in front of me was a copy of Exit A--deeply discounted. So deeply that I don't feel right saying how little I paid for it. Swofford probably doesn't care what I paid for his book, but if it were my book, I don't think I'd exactly be thrilled to learn that it could be had brand new for less than most items at their in-store café.

Jake Gyllenhaal is too gorgeous for words at the NY Jarhead premiereI haven't begun reading it yet. I am afraid. I'm afraid because while Anthony Swofford is a hundred times more well-read than I, has a superior vocabulary, and has demonstrated admirably that he can write, the hardest part of writing isn't the prose for someone like me; it's the story. I've read articles and correspondence by Swofford, and his mastery of language is evident. But I've not read any of his fiction before. What if the magic of Swofford's prose fails to carry a mediocre tale that does not have the built-in gravity of truth? Clearly, I'm projecting my own inadequacies upon a writer whom I do not know. That's what I do best. I know that even if Exit A sucks, it does not diminish the savage beauty of Jarhead. Still, I will feel deflated, as if the facile words and faltering story really were my own.

Fortunately for us, Swofford is not me: he has had the courage to pursue his writing, has successfully been published. He claims he is driven by a constant fear of failure, something that for me has had the opposite effect. Maybe if my failure meant a humiliating death, it would be more of a motivator. Or maybe it's success that I really fear.

Happy birthday, Swoff. Have a few drinks on me.

Jake's Swoff wonders if Staff Sergeant Sykes knows how utterly insane he isFurther reading:

Chat transcripts
Washington Post
USA Today

Sydney Morning Herald
Das Magazin
Combustible Celluloid
Mother Jones
The Stranger
The Portland Mercury
Jake as Swoff trains his beautiful eye on the enemy

Jarhead L.A. Premiere
LX.TV with SuChin Pak
Tribeca Film Festival

By Anthony Swofford
"Coming Home: Seven Families Lay Their Fallen Soldiers to Rest. A Photo Essay" (Mother Jones)

Simon & Schuster

Photos: NY Times News Service, Dan Winters, IHJ.


Interlude: American lies

When I wrote about Rendition being labeled as liberal propaganda, I didn't realize the mud was already flying over at the IMDb message board for the movie. Since Jake has gone back under the radar after his teasing appearance almost two weeks ago with the Avon lady, I am left to entertain myself by other means. Unfortunately, the discussion was not what I'd expected. The thread can be summed up as follows:

Your mother!

For those who decide to visit it anyway, don't say I didn't warn you. Ten points to anyone who can correctly identify my comment. No, I have no idea why I expected any better from an entertainment message board. I won't be returning.

Extraordinary rendition, the subject of the movie, is beyond the petty bickering of people who want to use it as a bullet point in the argument for their side.

Every American should read this article from 2005 and this ACLU description of the process. Know what your government, my government, is up to. Does torture work, is it necessary? Why has our president lied to the world, denying that U.S.-sanctioned torture takes place? This is not some Machiavellian drama; real, living human beings are involved.

Jake Gyllenhaal, good looking revolutionary, poses for the ACLU

Photo: IHJ.


Food for thought

Jake Gyllenhaal, shoving some taco-looking thing into his mouthThis afternoon I spent twenty precious minutes of my one-hour lunch washing the bugs off of every leaf of a head of iceberg lettuce. It was nasty, but the worst part is that I'd already made (and eaten) a salad from that lettuce before discovering the infestation. Oh well. As usual, my thoughts drifted to Jake. Would he take the time to wash iceberg lettuce? Would he even disgrace his palate with iceberg lettuce? Probably not. But then, Jake is not a vegetarian on a tight budget trying desperately to lose weight.
Jake Gyllenhaal, looking kinda pissed and sucking on a smoothieEvery time I cook, and the result is generally a monochromatic, unappetizing pile of soy-based sludge (yes, I add vegetables, but you can't tell by the time I'm done), the same idea rolls into my head: Jake would be horrified. And I know he would. If Jake Gyllenhaal, avowed foodie, cupcake- and blood sausage-eater extraordinaire (well, not together--that I know of, anyway), Mr. my Milanese is amazing, saw what this Italian-American woman has been feeding herself for the past seven months, he would weep for me. He's sensitive like that.
Jake on the set of The Good Girl, satisfying himself with a SnickersBut I don't believe Jake has ever been fat. This picture of him with the white towel is the heaviest I've ever seen him. I'd estimate he might be carrying at the most an extra ten pounds here. Okay, fifteen. Scandalous! An innately active, athletic person like Jake generally will never face the problem with weight that I've endured my entire life.

This is not the first time I've lost over fifty pounds. Hell, it isn't even the second. I am hoping it is the last.
Jake holding what I swear has to be a plate full of raw meatHowever, it should go without saying that were I ever to have the privilege of dining with (or--gasp!--being cooked for by) Jake, he could feed me pizza, filet mignon, or Sprinkles cupcakes, and I'd eat it all. You bet I would. A girl has to know her priorities.

All photos: IHJ and the IHJ Community.



Jake Gyllenhaal poses for the UK's Guardian magazine

O glorious, guileless muse!
How you taunt and betray me, at once provoking action and holding firm my wrist that ink touch not paper.
From 'neath the jumbled piles of thought in my head speaks your voice,
More! Give me more!
If only that sentiment were truly yours and not my own wistful murmur.
Tis not your humility that I lament, but your indifference.
For the caress of your eyes upon my written words
would be as the touch of your hand upon my flesh.
Instead I am condemned to forever dream of both and achieve neither.

(previously posted to the JW forums)

I'll be adding things here from time to time, like this one, that I originally shared on the forums at Jake Watch, mostly because I'd like to have them all here. This is the first.

Photo: IHJ.


Rendition trailer!

Better late than never.

So, yesterday while I was at work, innocently doing actual work for the first time in about a week, the rest of the world was ooh-ing and aah-ing over the full Rendition trailer, which must have magically appeared as I slept. Bastards. I would have posted these captures and the trailer much sooner, but I sort of couldn't stop myself watching it over and over...and over....

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Jake in RenditionJake in Rendition
Jake in RenditionJake in Rendition

This is going to be one intense role for Jake, from all appearances. Jake has died in a few films, but to see him almost getting blown up in that last bit was strangely exciting to me. Go figure. It looks like Douglas Freeman is a rather locked-down, caged-animal kind of guy. Not just that...Jake looks somehow bigger here; he has a large physical presence, more intimidating than his Jarhead bulk, in my opinion. He's powerful and mesmerizing, and that's with a grand total of about 10 seconds' worth of action. I could not anticipate this release with any more excitement unless Jake were coming over to escort me to a premiere himself. Or maybe to bring me back to a private screening at his home. Ahh, dreams.

I included that last cap because it just makes me all giddy. No less than three Academy Award winners are credited here, but Jake is billed first, at least in the trailer. That's gotta be a good sign, right? I tried to access the movie's advertised home page again, but it still isn't in place as of this morning. Oh well.

My one fear about this film right now is that it will in some way try to justify the process of extraordinary rendition by portraying it as having a desirable outcome. While there is no reason to suspect this, I know that it would be a very effective form of audience manipulation, and in fact to avoid being considered yet another liberal attack on foreign policy, it would be essential. I don't consider myself liberal nor conservative; my interest is justice and human rights, and I wish the leaders of my country were more interested in representing me than themselves.

All captures by me.