From an article on the cocaine trade between Mexico and the U.S.:
“They erect this fence,” he said, “only to go out there a few days later and discover that these guys have a catapult, and they’re flinging hundred-pound bales of marijuana over to the other side.” He paused and looked at me for a second. “A catapult,” he repeated. “We’ve got the best fence money can buy, and they counter us with a 2,500-year-old technology.”” —Attacking Fences
Anyway. The Sopranos. I’ve almost never committed an act of violence against a stranger, but I did that summer, and it was basically because I allowed Tony Soprano to posses me.
The stranger was this fellow student at my college who’d stolen my sneakers at a party the previous winter. I’d had to walk home without them on a snowy February night in Montreal. Montreal in February ranges between 20 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit below freezing. Two feet of snow is not considered remarkable. It was a long walk home, and I stayed mad about it for months afterward. I kept my eyes peeled for whoever had stolen my very distinct shoes (yellow Adidas’ with paint splotches on them) but I thought the most likely thing was that they were sitting in the back of a closet somewhere. Who would have the chutzpah to wear a stolen pair of bright yellow sneakers on campus?
I got a call one morning that July from my then girlfriend. She was at the college bookstore and had seen a guy wearing my shoes. I took a cab across town to the bookstore. He was still inside when I got there, and so I paced around outside, realizing belatedly that I didn’t really know what I was going to do. I am not a tough person, and I don’t look like one. I’ve lost basically all of the few confrontations I’d had with strangers, unless you count stammering an apology while backing away as winning. But I realized that unless I wanted to watch this guy stride away in my shoes, I was going to have to channel Tony.
He came outside and almost walked into me. He was a little shorter than me and dressed in a billowy white oxford, with skinny dark pants and my yellow shoes as a kind of playful highlight. I barked at him. “Nice shoes, where’d you get them?” “Uh, my brother gave them to me.” “They’re mine. Take them off.”
He pretended to not know what I was talking about, which is where, I think, if I were functioning like a normal person, I would have been embarrassed and gone into my stammering apology mode. Instead, I summoned Tony. I grabbed him by his stupid white shirt and shoved him against a glass door. I held him there. I insisted that he return my shoes.
I remember holding him there as normal, sane students awkwardly sidled past us. I remember thinking that I was no longer myself, and how strange it felt to have a stranger be afraid of me. There’s a longer version of this story, but the short one is that he confessed, in a roundabout way, and returned my shoes. They’re still in my closet, but I never wear them because they smell awful.” —On the Media
JN: I don’t remember exactly, but Chris and David started developing the story in 2008 after the second film came out, so before the recession, before Occupy Wall Street, any of that stuff. Rather than being influenced by that, looking to old, good books, old, good movies, literature for inspiration, and at some point started thinking about Tale of Two Cities.
I think what was captivating to me about it and what I always felt we needed to do in film was to go there. I mean, all these films threatened to turn Gotham inside out, to sort of pull it, and none of them really have actually achieved that until this film. Tale of Two Cities to me was the most sort of harrowing portrait of a relatable recognizable civilization that had completely fallen to pieces. The terrors in Paris, in France in that period, it’s not hard to imagine that things could go that bad and wrong. So, that was source of inspiration.” —FILM INTERVIEW: JONATHAN & CHRISTOPHER NOLAN | buzzinefilm.com Spoiler free (themes aside)