It Chooses You

It Chooses You In the summer of Miranda July was struggling to finish writing the screenplay for her much anticipated second film During her increasingly long lunch breaks she began to obsessively read the Pe

  • Title: It Chooses You
  • Author: Miranda July Brigitte Sire
  • ISBN: 9781936365012
  • Page: 467
  • Format: Hardcover
  • It Chooses You

    In the summer of 2009, Miranda July was struggling to finish writing the screenplay for her much anticipated second film During her increasingly long lunch breaks, she began to obsessively read the PennySaver, the iconic classifieds booklet that reached everywhere and seemed to come from nowhere Who was the person selling the Large leather Jacket, 10 It seemed importIn the summer of 2009, Miranda July was struggling to finish writing the screenplay for her much anticipated second film During her increasingly long lunch breaks, she began to obsessively read the PennySaver, the iconic classifieds booklet that reached everywhere and seemed to come from nowhere Who was the person selling the Large leather Jacket, 10 It seemed important to find out or at least it was a great distraction from the screenplay.Accompanied by photographer Brigitte Sire, July crisscrossed Los Angeles to meet a random selection of PennySaver sellers, glimpsing thirteen surprisingly moving and profoundly specific realities, along the way shaping her film, and herself, in unexpected ways.Elegantly blending narrative, interviews, and photographs with July s off kilter honesty and deadpan humor, this is a story of procrastination and inspiration, isolation and connection, and grabbing hold of the invisible world.

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      Posted by:Miranda July Brigitte Sire
      Published :2020-06-08T16:58:42+00:00

    One thought on “It Chooses You

    1. christa

      At first I didn’t like Miranda July. She seemed too precious. Her first book of short stories, contrived quirkiness. Like watching Zooey Deschanel shop for leg warmers at Goodwill. But I didn’t like Miranda July in that way that meant I’d be peeking out from behind the curtains to watch her walk down the street. I didn’t like her in a way I understood to mean that I didn’t like her right now, but that wasn’t necessarily my final verdict. Then I loved Miranda July. It was her movie [...]

    2. veronica

      Like a lot of Miranda July's projects I had a lot of conflicting feelings about this book -- giving the book a 3 star rating really doesn't reflect how I felt about it, it's more like the average of my reaction to the book, some of which I loved, loved and some I hated. The good: it's poignant, funny, the PennySaver people are a fascinating bunch and the photography is great. The bad: the nagging feeling that this was all freak show exploitation. The ugly: July's non-stop solipsistic whining abo [...]

    3. Melki

      Now I like to forageIn some people's storageAs much as the next guyAs a way to avoid working on her screenplay, Miranda July spent hours perusing the weekly Pennysaver. Her curiosity piqued, she set out to meet the sellers of items ranging from a hairdryer to a sixty-seven piece art set. The result is a collection of interviews and photos; people gladly telling the stories of their lives, sharing their dreams and losses, and explaining how they came to the decision to part with their particular [...]

    4. Margaret

      I eagerly anticipated this book's arrival to my local library for weeks--because the concept is intriguing. I was disappointed, however, with the execution of this concept. The author seemed far more interested in how each encounter could be used to tell the audience something about herself, rather than telling each individual's story. Many times it seemed like the author enjoyed portraying these characters negativelyr example, the woman holding the small feline, photographed with her belly hang [...]

    5. Danger

      This was a weird one. Partially serving as a (somewhat-but-not-really) chronicle of Miranda July’s process of writing her 2nd feature film The Future, during which she procrastinates by meeting up with and interviewing random people who had placed ads for junk in the local PennySaver. Although I would consider myself a fan of July’s (both her film and prose) this book turned me off at first. It was just solf-indulgent. Like she was placing her position as an “artist” (a quirky one at tha [...]

    6. Bert

      This is a brilliant kind of conceptual art/memoir that is mostly sad, and gives me that existential funny-tummy feeling that i try really hard to avoid because it is maybe too real. It is also life-affirming. So this book is concerned with authenticity, and what happens when you spend too much time in your own head, or that empty feeling of being tied to the internet or of just being alive right now, that sense that you are not living an authentic life. What i love about Miranda July is she neve [...]

    7. Jennifer

      This is a tough one. This one repulsed me. I'm still trying to figure out why and I might delete this tomorrow because I feel like I might be judging too harshly, but here it goes anyways. Something about a white, pretty, privileged, screenwriter chick who only associates with Hollywood industry people (of course) and lives in Silver Lake (of course) and yet despite not having a "job" (which must also be explicitly pointed out to me) can still pay rent a few blocks away at a "cave" (unlikely) wh [...]

    8. Kathrin Passig

      Ich hab es eigentlich nur wegen der sehr guten Prokrastinationsgeschichte in der Einleitung gelesen und bin dann dran hängengeblieben. Am Ende geht es um Kunst, also, wie Kunst eigentlich funktioniert. Die Lektüre war einerseits tröstlich: Man kann die ganze Zeit nur Blödsinn machen und herumpfuschen und scheitern. Andererseits beunruhigend: Man müsste das alles viel ernster nehmen, als ich es tue, dann käme auch was Interessantes dabei heraus. Würde auch fünf Sterne geben, vermute aber, [...]

    9. Zach

      While the project behind this book, interviewing people with items listed in the Penny Saver, is interesting, what makes the book worth reading is Miranda July's unique perspective onwell, everything. Sure, lots of the stories she finds speak for themselves, but as anyone who's familiar with her performance art knows, what she really excels at is locating the relevance (some people might use the word meaning, but that would imply an authorial imposition and I don't think she does that) of object [...]

    10. Elena Tomorowitz

      There's a part of me that wants to raise my fist for Miranda July and say, "Yeah, she GETS our generation!" But then there's the cynical part of me that wants to shake her and ask her what her deal is. It's so hard to separate Miranda July from "It Chooses You" just as much as it would be difficult to envision not-Miranda July as the main character in either of her films. It's kind of like everything she touches turns into a gummy bear or some other quirky snack that she probably eats for dinner [...]

    11. Chloe

      Miranda July is my hero. In "It Chooses You," she does everything I wish I could do. She senses the overwhelming pressure of computers and online life, and fights against it. In doing this, she experiences the world of strangers living in her own neighborhood (albeit the very large neighborhood of Los Angeles), and really explores the sad state of the internet-driven social constrictions that surround modern life. Instead of reading a stranger's blog, she experiences a person's real-life "blog" [...]

    12. Shannon

      I was a fan of Miranda July's book of short stories and found this book while ordering quirky reads for the library's collection. I was immediately drawn to the idea of answering PennySaver ads and I'm a huge fan of reading about the lives of ordinary people. And in that sense, this collection of essays nails it. July meets a small collection of heartfelt and quirky Americans. But that's the thing, I wanted more of the people and less of July. I found myself skimming over the parts about her scr [...]

    13. Kevin

      I thoroughly enjoyed this odd little book (in which Miranda July, looking for inspiration to finish her screenplay, decides to interview people that she finds in the PennySaver ads). The interviews are funny, charming, and display an unvarnished array of Los Angeles citizens. Some of the dialogue, and her own commentary, is oddly touching. The subplot--about her personal life and the struggles of getting a movie finished--is quite interesting as well. The photos are pure Americana and wonderful. [...]

    14. Marcy Dermansky

      This book pleased me very much. Now I want to watch Miranda July's films which for reasons not quite clear to me -- envy perhaps -- I have avoided.

    15. Ellie

      It Chooses You is a recounting of how one artist (Miranda July) dealt with writer's block: she read the local Pennysaver, a print-version Craig's List type resource often found in supermarket. She contacted several people advertising in the paper and interviewed them. The interviews are more interesting for her connection to the subjects than for their content. I found July, a performance artist, writer, and filmmaker to be a touching and fascinating presence. I looked forward to my reading of t [...]

    16. Jennifer

      After owning this book for months and not picking it up (because I wasn't sure what to make of it), I loved it so much I read it cover to cover in one afternoon. It Chooses You tackles so many things at once - fear of being a terrible/fake/undeserving artist, fear of running out of ideas, fear of falling in love because that could mean someday losing that love, and fear of being alone. These themes are tackled from a couple different, and equally interesting angles. Miranda writes about her own [...]

    17. Udai

      The funny thought of wanting to know how other ordinary people, like passersby in the street, live their lives always struck me. This thought always came with profound sadness and emptiness making me feel that life is worthless.What makes life special? And why are we here? And why are they still living their worthless lives? Knowing that your story isn't that special and knowing a lot of stories get forgotten is an overwhelming feeling that will leave you lost in a sea of vagueness. If someone w [...]

    18. Cheryl

      This is one of those books that could cause a lively debate/discussion among readers (particularly nonfiction readers). I saw this happen in real time. Admittedly, when I first tackled this memoir, I was lured in by the beginning, when the narrator talks about the writing apartment she kept even after getting married, her relationship, her screen writing writer's block, and the internet dabbling. It is a book about a struggling screenwriter who can't find a sponsor or the ending to her movie, so [...]

    19. Alice Urchin

      I was feeling nostalgic and rereading No One Belongs Here More Than You when I was stricken with this need to buy all of Miranda July's books off of . This one arrived today, and I read it in one sitting. For the most part, it satisfied the craving that I was having, but at the end of it, I just felt really weird and sadwhich is sort of a tone of a lot of the book. I didn't know this when I started reading it, but in it, she had taken a break from writing The Future because she's sort of stuck a [...]

    20. Gosia

      This kind of book you want to keep reading but you don't want to finish. Amazing. I remember watching 'Me and you and everyone else we know' after it came out and I was maybe sill too young for it but I remember it left me with some indescribable feeling. I had this feeling all along reading this book.Especially as I just had a baby and this is one of the topics Miranda wonders about.Especially as I spend way too much time online and I feel I don't live the real life. Especially as I'm procrasti [...]

    21. Christopher

      Miranda July is a difficult writer for me to like. Something about her just embodies the whole essence of all that is twee and precious and utterly indigestible with a certain branch of post-modern literature. Even contemplating the phrase "post-modern literature" kind of makes me shiver, as if I had little spiders with bi-level haircuts crawling up my neck. I tried watching her film "The Future", and while I think there was a lot about it that was competent - it looked nice, the characters were [...]

    22. Belinda

      Recently married Miranda July gets stuck while working on the screenplay of her second feature film, The Future. While deliberately not working on her computer, with its endless distractions, she flicks through a free magazine distributed to LA residents called the PennySaver, in which people advertise items for sale (note: it is in the PennySaver that Juno finds the adoptive parents for her baby in the movie Juno). In a somewhat epic act of procrastination, Miranda decides to investigate the ki [...]

    23. jess

      The premise is that Miranda July is writing a screenplay (now a motion picture "THE FUTURE") but she's having some issues with her writing/revising, and as a distraction, she starts responding to ads in the Pennysaver, interviewing each subject, ostensibly trying to get to the bottom of what they are selling, why they're selling it, and who they are. But, you know, it's Miranda July, so really it's about love, failure/success, art, and the broken ways we humans get through the world. Brigitte Si [...]

    24. Sian Lile-Pastore

      well, this was just great. It's also really honest, funny, odd and a little sad (I may have cried at the end). If you've seen July's films this is going to make more sense to you, but if you haven't seen them you'll want to after reading this. It's a book about writing, Miranda July is trying to finish writing her screenplay (which becomes the film 'The Future')"This story takes place in 2009, right after our wedding. I was writing a screenplay in the little house. I wrote it at the kitchen tabl [...]

    25. FredericGermay

      After seeing 'Me, You, & Everyone We Know' and 'The Future,' I was astonished by how bravely artistic the writer/director, Miranda July, was. Being immaturely impatient, the idea of simply waiting until her next movie came out sounded awfully unpleasant. And so I came across this book.It Chooses You is short, sweet, and vividly colorful. In it, Ms. July details a social experiment of hers, where she scoured the pennysaver ads and visited the individuals who were selling these little trivial [...]

    26. Alicia

      Loved the movie The Future. And loved this book. We were lucky enough to catch a Q&A with Miranda July following a screening of The Future at the ArcLight, and I'd read some articles about the making of the movie, so I knew the back story with the character of Joe (the old man who advertises the hairdryer in the Penny Saver). But even if I hadn't known what was coming, I probably still would've bawled throughout the last chapter of this book."I thought about his sixty-two years of sweet, fil [...]

    27. Ginny Pennekamp

      Full disclosure: ME, YOU & EVERYONE WE KNOW is a great movie. Perhaps my favorite Sundance screening ever. I have seen BEGINNERS 3 times and the directors commentary twice. I own & have read Miranda July's book of short stories and love it. I have seen THE FUTURE. It was eh.This book is only 1 part experiment, and 3 parts director's commentary on THE FUTURE. The really interesting thing is, it explains in part why the movie failed, and why she knew it was going to. And it has one really [...]

    28. Stephen

      Maybe you don't like Miranda July, I can understand that, it's hard to believe her sincerity when everything seems to have the same weight for her, and she can be a bit too cute or neurotic (or worse, "quirky"), but there are parts of this book that are really affecting: mostly those parts when July lets her interviewees speak for themselves. Those parts make the book worthwhile, even if there are only a handful of them and they get quickly lost in the haze of July's preoccupations. On the level [...]

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