I made it, I made it – thank you god (sobs). Five days of torture, five days of dismembering and decapitations, five days reliance on London’s public transport system post-midnight, I’m amazed I’m still in one piece. Frightfest was an absolute blast, a tiring, endurance challenging experience but I loved it – it’s now an essential part of my yearly schedule going forward. Once I really got into the swing of things around day three I was in movie-hog heaven, with no less than five screenings on the Saturday and four on the Sunday and Monday, altogether I managed to see 17 films and one great documentary on the history and cultural resonance of the ‘Video Nasties’ phenomenon of the eighties, I may do a separate blog post on that at some point. I’m quite happy to take a break from the screen for a couple of weeks although I really should give Scott Pilgrim a chance, we’ll see how my batteries recharge and my review back-log is managed. Although I’ve managed to finish five reviews the prospect of another twelve is quite daunting, at this rate I should wrap things up just as the LFF starts.
In terms of a quick round-up then I can strongly recommend both Monsters and The Loved Ones which are both unmissable, I’m part way through my review of the former which I’m taking my time on as I want to do it justice, especially since it is potentially the film of the year. Genre fans will appreciate The Dead, Buried, The Bedevilled, The Last Exorcism, Hatchet 2 and the I Spit On Your Grave remake; the lazily touted ‘this years Let The Right One In’ Mexican cannibal picture We Are What We Are was also hungrily effective. Predictably the UK efforts were terrible, both 13 Hours* (an adherent of the louder equals scarier film school) and Cherry Tree Lane, yet another technically solid (in terms of building up tension once the brutal home invasion begins) social realist example of middle-class hoodie fear which is really starting to bore me rigid. I’m talking dead rigid. To be avoided at all costs are both Damned By Dawn (Australian Evil Dead clone which is destroyed by terrible CGI and a serious lack of imagination and genre understanding) and Red, White & Blue, one of the most pretentiously tedious pseudo-art wank indie wannabe Sundance courting two hours of torture I have ever experienced. I don’t think I’ve ever so actively willed a film to finish but it just kept going and going, with its hateful characters and punishing soundtrack, ‘its like called Red White & Blue yeah ‘cause its about America yeah, and that skank in the film who gives all those guys AIDS is like a metaphor for America in the world yeah, and that’s why I’ve obviously put loads of flags in the background of many of my shots yeah, and that’s why there’s that psycho whose just come back from Iraq yeah’……I’m not making this up. Movie cliché review example No. 1 – hey guys, I’ll tell you what, the real torture wasn’t the I Spit On Your Grave re-make it was sitting through this agony, amirite?
The Adam Green and Joe Lynch series of short comedy / horror films gave the festival a sense of progression and camaraderie, everyone was just so friendly and approachable, it’s an oft quoted mantra but it’s true that horror aficionados are the friendliest bunch of fans out there. Like me you may have had some presumptions of the type of denizen that Frightfest would attract, that irritating neck-beard sporting, basement dwelling thirty-something singleton who still lives with his parents. Well, it’s quite simply not true – well, not 100% anyway - as there were many people from all sexes and ages attending the event and besides as long as everyone is having fun who really cares? I didn’t manage to catch anything on the alternative Discovery screen due to some amateur fumbling on my part – when the advice reads ‘Turn Up at 10.00am to collect tickets that are allocated on a first come, first served basis’ what they really mean is ‘turn up at 9.30am, at the absolute latest, and cross your fingers’. I had wanted to see Fanboys at this screen with essentially a perfect fellow audience for that film’s vein of humor, plus a comedic break from all the violence would have been welcome, alas it was not to be and I soldiered on through the guts and gore. I was looking forward to the The Walking Dead preview footage, appropriately enough this screened after the world premiere of the new zombie chiller The Dead (pretty good old-school Fulci style take on the sub-genre for cadaver aficionados), all of the ten minutes of it was a bit of a cheat given that much of what they screened is available on-line with a slightly extended ‘awakening’ scene, nevertheless I have very high expectations for that series as it looks very well crafted and is being ushered forth from some great source material by one of the most skilled genre creatives working at the moment. Roll on November and bitorrent.
The organisers were genuinely concerned about the replacement of Buried for the withdrawn A Serbian Film, director Alan Jones giving a passionate speech on the history of events which led to this lamentable decision, apparently after demanding the cuts Westminster Council also ordered a further submission to the BBFC which could have again been put in turnaround, this procedural point really leaving the organisers in an untenable position both in terms of time and artistic integrity. This is the first film in 11 years to be queried and this all sounds very politically manufactured to me, I predict we’ll see other incidents such as this over the next five years.
Finally, it’s just great fun to hang out in the foyer and see the likes of Neil Marshall, Kim Newman, Christopher Smith and of course Emily Booth wandering around, it was very amusing to me to be seated three seats away from Kane Hodder – that’s Jason Voorhees to me and you - with Eli Roth sitting right in front of me during the European premiere of The Last Exorcism last night, I think I missed a trick by not waiting until a quiet moment of the screening and firmly clasping his shoulder, yelling FIRE!! in his ear and watching him shriek and flee like a scared girl, that would have made the Fangoria news headlines. So, anyway, I will start to move over my completed reviews from the sister site to here as I craft my remaining reviews for publication over there (if you catch my drift), I will be picking my battles to get the bigger premieres and more important films covered first before cherry picking some of the quiet gems such as Bedevilled for further analysis. Won’t the pain ever end??
* One observation I think I’ll keep from my ‘international’ review, 13 Hours ‘star’ Gemma Atkinson whom I understand (cough, cough) is a Hollyoaks actress turned glamour pin-up girl, when she was introduced on stage one comedian behind me yelled ‘We love your work in Nuts’ to scattered applause. Well, it made me laugh……
Ladies and gentlemen, I believe I have finally found my tribe. I need a break from crafting my reviews – a difficult task to juggle when you consider mortal concerns such as sleep, sustenance and sanity – but this has been an amazing experience, prompting the question as to why haven’t I tried this before? What was I thinking? I toyed with the idea of attending Frightfest last year but it clashed with my Paris expedition, that of course does not excuse my previous eight years of oversight. This festival is a wonderful experience, quite different from the London Film Festival given that that is stretched over the panorama of the capitals movie capacities, Frightfest is appropriately more focused on the two screens of the Empire Leicester Square, and it is all the more efficient and cosy in that design.
The infrastructure is amazing – the Empire’s Screen 1 is enormous – it’s much more impressive than the flagship Odeon across the square (where I saw Inception from the balcony which was not that impressive) – with a superb sound system and generous sight-lines from every seat, it is testament to the festivals approach that the organisers genuinely encourage patrons to select alternative seats for less compacted screenings and they are easily approachable and welcome discussion, the whole ethos is to have fun, meet people and enjoy yourself. Almost every screening I’ve seen has been punctuated with Q&A’s with the stars and directors of the particular film, not to mention some throughly amusing intermission episodes, short films, montages and teasers that really build a sense of occasion. Earlier today yesterday the director of The Human Centipede turned up unexpectedly with some stills from his compounded sounding sequel, the day before Tobe Hooper materialised for the first time in the UK for eighteen years, before that Tony Todd and Kane Hodder were stalking autograph hunters and genre aficionados - suffice to say there is a real sense of community and there are unexpected surprises at every turn. Oh, and free DVD’s – nice.
I did want to address the removal of A Serbian Film controversy so here is my two cents, I confess I’m in a quandary. On the one hand, from reading more about the film, about its events and sequences I’m partially glad I don’t have to endure this experience as it sounds reprehensible – that’s my choice. It may – and I stress the may – be one of those loathsome films that confuses artistic intent with simple obscenity, to generate a media buzz on the back of its empty cacophony. On the other hand I am in binary opposition to a process that allows adults – and again I stress the word adults – to confiscate, to censor and prevent what other adults can see, what other adults can read, what other adults can listen to and absorb, never forgot that this is Westminster Council who similarly banned Cronenberg’s Crash a decade ago on the grounds of similarity minded, pathetic puritanicalism. It may be a horrendous piece of work with no value but I and other adults would like the opportunity to make that judgement rather than some vague arbiter of cultural acceptability. There is a principle here and it is very scary when one sliver, when one portion of society can make this judgement without oversight or accountability. Several million points of kudos to the Frightfest crew to aligning with the artistic judgement call and pulling it rather than screening it in an uncut form, not to mention Westminster Council overlooking and insulting the thousands of pounds that is spent by people coming from all over Europe and the US to such a well established event, that is in diametric opposition to a local council’s objectives and concerns.
Personally speaking, after easing myself into the carnage with a mere two screenings (plus events) over the first two days I went lunatic yesterday with a back to back five film extravaganza, fuck knows when I’ll find the time to cover all this activity, suffice to say some screenings will be abbreviated - the two UK films and the Tobe Hooper double bill plus Q&A can be compressed, we shall see how this all develops. I’d like to catch some of the Asian, Australian and French material that is still on offer but some of the other remaining essentials may prevent this task. I’m back in the saddle later on but I have to give an enormous endorsement to Monsters - trailer above – which I suspect will be the best film of the festival and one of the best films of the year. It’s terrific. Seriously. Finally, another shameless plug, some of my reviews are getting streamed over here, please give them some traffic. Tomorrows todays big attraction? A world premiere of the first 15 minutes or so of The Walking Dead…..
OK, I’ll come clean, there is only one reason I’m attending Frightfest this year, and who can blame me?
Who remembers BITS? I do. Frequently. Soooo, anyway, I should be at the NFT screening of this tonight but work interfered as usual and a last-minute crisis needed to be resolved so I didn’t get away from Essex in time - I’m not hugely annoyed as I’ve seen Meadows being interviewed before and I suspect that seeing the first part of that series would merely whet my appetite for the rest, I can wait for the inevitable DVD, hopefully by Christmas. To be honest I could do with another relaxing evening at home before events kick off tomorrow, given that I will seeing upward of three movies a day for the next five days I shall be relaxing at home with Season 3 of Dexter. So here’s the absolute, final, utterly decisive post of the week, wish me luck and I’ll catch up with you post-festival. If I make it of course…
It’s speed review time! In preparation for the incrementally approaching Frightfest extravaganza here is a quick double whammy, a couple of flicks I’ve just caught over the weekend, one serious and one stupid, both throughly entertaining in their own particular ways. I’ve timing myself to see how long it takes to throw these two together, I therefore make no apologies for any lack of sense or any paralysing insights into the human condition rendered via celluloid form, heck just getting some sentences together and hopefully getting the plots explained can sometimes be difficult enough. These two films are quite different beasts, one a melancholic mediation on memory and regret, the other some grisly aquatic carnage, they don’t quite make comfortable bed-fellows but both are recommended, I guess your attraction to either with depend on your mood. So lets begin;
Argentina, the late 1990′s. Haunted by the brutal unsolved rape and murder of a young schoolteacher twenty-five years ago retired magistrate Benjamin Esposito (a terrifically smoldering Ricardo Darín) has decided to exorcise his demons by writing a novel of his experiences, a tome whose research leads him down new avenues of investigation that drag some submerged secrets back into the revelatory sunlight. Benjamin’s quest simultaneously rekindles a smoldering romance he almost consummated with the sultry Irene (a pulchritudinous Soledad Villamil), a para-legal colleague whose assistance in his original inquisition threw them both into terrible danger at the hands of the corrupt and murderous political elite as his country slid inexorably toward a horrific military dictatorship. Benjamins only other accomplice in his crusade is his alcoholic colleague Sandoval whose drunken rants against the growing degeneration of his beloved country provoke some lethal attention, both men being provoked into bravery by the fathomless love that the victims young husband Ricardo Morales (Pablo Rago) still cherishes for his lost inamorata.
El secreto de sus ojos is a superb, politically muted and noirishly tinged investigative thriller with a simmering cry for justice at its core. Quite rightly the political turmoil surrounding this moving tale is secreted in the ambience of the tale, enabling the investigation of the terrible crime to come forward through a dexterous use of the traditional flashback technique, the film deftly flips through match-cuts and sound cues from the immediate aftermath of the crime of 1974 to Benjamin’s later investigations almost three decades later. As such the film is embroidered with notions of regret and the trouble with memory, for me the more powerful strand was the unconsummated love affair between Benjamin and Irene, a woman from a higher caste and class which complicates and ultimately dooms his romantic intentions. Director Juan José Campanella throws in some unusual camera techniques, utilising different focus patterns to distort and sequester elements of the frame which builds the films sense of mystery and suspense, there is also a terrific chase scene between the police and the main culprit at a Buenos Aires football stadium which is traced in a Hitchcockian overhead shot that moves from a wide, establishing landscape to the urgent concerns flickering across Benjamins anxious face in one deft, ‘uncut’ manoeuvre. Now, moving on from the sublime to the ridiculous….
Any aquatic monster movie that opens not only with a Richard Dreyfuss cameo, but a Richard Dreyfuss cameo of him alone on a boat, drinking bottles of ‘Amity’ beer and singing along with this signposts a film which is not exactly subtle in its intentions – welcome to Piranha in terrifying 3D. Sleepy Lake Victoria, a small, sun-drenched American hamlet is host to the yearly spring break festivities where hordes of Budweiser fuelled, firm bodied students descend to party like it’s, erm, 1999 or something. An underwater tremor releases a horde of frenzied, carnivorous ichthyoids who are very,very hungry, when a crew of inquisitive divers breach their lair events turn a bloody crimson hue in two shakes of a vertebrates tail. Elizabeth Shue – always a treasure on-screen in my humble opinion - is the town’s efficient Sheriff with solid support from the hefty Ving Rhames, the film’s main hero however is newcomer Steven R. McQueen as Shue’s son Jake Forester, a young resident who is hired to be the location scout for sleazy porn director Derrick Jones (Jerry O’ Connel in a barely camouflaged satire of the odious git behind the Girls Gone Wild DVD industry – you can find your own links) who is shooting a new movie on his yacht. Jake accepts this dubious assignment in order to defend the honor of his friend Kelly whom has been seduced by Jones, his obvious affection for her resulting in some unlikely heroics when events become drenched in pelagic peril. There’s also a couple of further cameos from a bug-eyed Christopher Loyd as the towns elder scientist and Eli Roth makes a brief appearance as the host of a wet t-shirt contest – a real stretch for his acting prowess I’m sure – before SPOILER being dispatched in one of the films more pleasant homicides SPOILER END.
Utter and complete nonsense of course but Piranha 3D is great fun, it walks a fine line between parody and caricature of all those exploitation flicks of years gone by although there are a few knowing winks to the audience throughout its compact 88 minute run time – this is a film which doesn’t get a chance to out-stay its welcome – director Alexandre Aja concocts a winning combination of titanic tits, gruesome gore and hectic homage, I felt a little stupider on exiting the cinema but that’s not always a bad thing now is it? Once the slaughter proceeds in earnest during the films final half hour I was chuckling away with all the other patrons, I may regret this phrase but the film has some of the best kills I’ve seen on the big screen for quite a while. The 3D, as you might imagine is of the shock and awe variety, there is plenty of beasts hurtling at you from the screen, plus a few well executed jumps complement the films B-Movie intentions. You don’t care about any of the characters and it’s blatantly obvious who will be left relatively unscathed as the credits begin scrolling, plus the obligatory avenue for a bigger, bloated sequel is mooted during the films closing moments - who can ask for more?
Phew, well I’m quite pleased with that effort I have to say. A little over an hour and a half without identifying links or pictures for those two reviews (which has taken me a further couple of hours if you must know) this bodes well for when the carnage commences on Thursday evening. Baring some tumultuous events in the film world things are going to be very quite around here for the ten days or so, make sure you bookmark the Sound On Sight joint to follow my incoherent warblings as there is no way I’m going to have the time to update this blog and submit my reviews once things get rolling. I’ll probably transfer my reviews back over here with the usual links and pictures once the dust has settled in early September, maybe I’ll expand on my initial reactions to the movies I see with further musings and observations, we’ll see how it goes. Essential viewings for me at the moment – and be seriously beware because some of these links are astoundingly NSFW – include Hatchet II as the opening film, Eggshells, the supposedly harrowing I Spit On Your Grave remake, We Are What We Are, the aforementioned Monsters, The Dead, The Last Exorcism as the closing film and of course the immediately notorious A Serbian Film which just looks, well, it just looks evil. EDIT – Forgot to mention I have tickets to a preview of this on Wednesday at the NFT, its got a good looking website….
Courtesy of the truly marvelous raconteurs over at the GGTMC - one of the top five podcasts out there film fans - here is some genuinely cultish, magical martial arts amusement that I enjoyed this evening;
Terrific fun if you are in the mood. So what to see this weekend – The Secret In Their Eyes is a definite for tomorrow, then maybe Mother if I’m going to be serious or Piranha 3D (this radio interview signposts some fun), a combination of these shall be achieved. It’s a difficult choice;
Finally I’ve tried and failed to embed a short slice of miasmic brilliance to the blog which I’m sure you can enjoy here. Wow.
It’s time for my annual theatre visit. After musing over The Stage and my recently acquired copy of Time Out some research lead me to realise that some jokers, lead by a dude called Sam Mendes had decided to adapt the 1950’s Technicolor classic Forbidden Planet for olden times, transporting the action from outer space to some remote Atlantic island where some Italian noblemen are washed up following a catastrophic storm, their bedraggled forms encountering the mysterious Prospero and his beautiful daughter Miranda in a sorcerous tale of duplicity and magical bedevilment. I bet the producers of this Old Vic hosted adaptation thought the trick of camouflaging the Leslie Nielsen starring original with some complex, byzantine language coupled with strict attention period dress and decorum could obscure their projects origins – pah, stupid amateurs, let it be said gentle reader that you have to get up pretty damn early to outfox the Mint.
Well, this was pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good*. Not brain exploding brilliant but pretty good. I think I may have been spoiled by my theatre experiences, the half-dozen or so visits I’ve made over the last ten years have been uniformly amazing, thus when a slightly above average evening is delivered it feels like a let-down. It was quite a modest production, there were no enormous effects rigs barging around the Old Vic to simulate the storms or special lighting techniques to emphasize the supernatural dimensions of either Caliban or Ariel, there was also no particular stand out performance but the story was great, there’s the terrific, luxurious language and of course there is always a sense of vivid immediacy in seeing something performed live in front of you, I managed to get stall tickets on the fourth row back from the stage so I was amidst the action as it were. I’d still quite like to see a production of Othello, A Midsummer Nights Dream and Hamlet of course, I’ve managed all the other plays of Bill’s I’ve liked and studied which of course is an obligatory part of any UK child’s state education. I’m looking forward to something else a little different next month; the Doug Stanhope evening is fast approaching which I’m sure will be……memorable.
Of course I can’t let this article pass without comment. I imagine the tinfoil hat brigade will be incandescently beaming at the revelation of Kubrick’s daughter clasped in the claws of Scientology, no doubt they believe it is revenge for his exposing of the illuminati in Eyes Wide Shut, this interview will be the mental equivalent of napalm hurled onto their smoldering paranoid fantasies, not to mention the sensational Tom Cruise tangent to the tale. There are claims amongst these cretins that Kubrick was finally going to come clean on his involvement with the Moon landings during some scheduled interviews to market Eyes Wide Shut’s release back in 1999, whilst it is accurate that he intended to address some of the wild rumours that had been circulating around him which were harming his family he wasn’t killed to suppress the ‘truth’ – these people really do have some severe mental issues. If it wasn’t so sad - a brainwashed daughter ostracised from her family to the point of missing her sisters funeral, that’s so fucked up – it would be funny. I remember Jan Harlan saying during the opening remarks of the Kubrick Study Day that once they had the terrible news of Stan’s death they were frantically trying to reach Vivian before word got out in the press, one would assume they’d have a phone number for her on the West Coast but this all makes that confusion much clearer. Kubrick did consider making a film set amidst the German Film Industry of the 1930’s due to those unfortunate family connections which I think is an incredibly fertile subject matter for a movie – all the allusions you could make to propaganda, image, surface and control that resonate today (jeez, now who sounds paranoid eh?) - one assumes that project is what mutated into the abandoned Aryan Papers. Anyway, here’s some examples of Vivian’s work on her Dad’s films, I guess this means (and I’m going to be horribly inappropriate and selfish here) that the Full Metal Jacket documentary that she shot will never be edited and completed - god-damn it. Firstly the only commercially released footage of Stanley actually at work;
And finally check out the eerie, disconcerting soundtrack to this magnetic scene;
I’m disgusted by most religions but those Scientology fucks really take the biscuit, biscuit barrel, biscuit recipe and biscuit production chain, I really hope Anderson crucifies them as the money obsessed, soulless, evil charlatans that they are in his new flick. Obligatory documentary here.
*Apologies, I watched all of Season 2 of Curb Your Enthusiasm again last Sunday and it’s still in the bloodstream.
Another quiet weekend cinematically speaking, the calm before the incoming storm as it were. I was toying with going to see The Expendables as it was playing locally (I couldn’t be bothered to venture far from my overcast Limehouse) over the weekend but I’m sure common sense prevailed, I watched the trailer again and I’m sorry – it looks fucking terrible. Sure, all I would want and expect was a big dumb action thriller but I’m deeply suspicious of any film that plays its trump card – a certain cameo – in its trailer, a wariness compounded by all those battle scenes also looking throughly boring – judging by the podcast reviews I’ve been listening to over the past few days I made the right choice. Which brings me to something genuinely revolutionary, the full US trailer for Enter The Void, one of the best films of last year;
I have to stress that whilst I’d urge you all to go and see it please remember it is very, very explicit and as such its not to be seen with potential dates or friends of a nervous disposition. So a quick wrap-up of other stuff, all these opinions raging over Scott Pilgrim Versus The World have got me intrigued, I have to say it looked like another tiresome Kick-Ass type fan-boy effort to me from the trailer but Edgar Wright is usually fun, I also like Michael Cera but the divided reviews have me in a quandary, especially those from die-hard Shaun, Spaced and Hot Fuzz fans who claim that it just isn’t funny – I think I’ll still give it a chance, our Melbourne correspondent quite liked it which sways me into the ‘give it a chance’ camp. Looking further ahead this also sounds very interesting, it’s a definite entry for the films to see in 2012. I honestly don’t know what I will be able to fit in before the film festival, I’m at the theatre tomorrow for my impromptu annual visit but I do need a further cultural antidote to all the (NSFW) horror and SF I’ve been consuming, therefore I really need to give that Argentinian film a viewing. OK. Maybe Thursday, until then here’s the trailer for a film that has been generating some enormous buzz for its Frightfest premiere, colour me intrigued;
Yes, it’s SF completest time again, just like my viewing of The Terminal Man a couple of years back I have finally managed to track down a film I have been wanting to see for years, in any format – DVD, VHS, Laserdisc, Betamax – I don’t care, I just wanted to see the damn thing in true collector mode and cross off one of those elusive UK SF movies which never seemed to crop up on TV back in my youth and never had much of a small screen release, although copies of The Final Programme have been floating around on e-bay and Amazon I wasn’t particularly inspired to shell out £100 or more for some questionable copy from some shady retailer. When I saw that a print had been unearthed and scrubbed up for this years Edinburgh film festival I seriously thought about going up there to see it, as usual work interfered but my patience has brought dividends as not only did I get to enjoy a screening of the film – it’s actually pretty awful in that sort of cult movie way – at the NFT this week they also brought on stage source material writer Michael Moorcock for an illuminating Q&A after the screening. Along with the likes of Bradbury, PKD, Tolkien, Helprin, King and Gibson, Moorcock was one of my favourite speculative fiction writers as a wee nipper so this was quite a coup, a two for one deal if you will. But first the movie;
Imagine, if you will, a UK version of Barbarella made by the incompetents behind the Confessions films being fired halfway through production and replaced by Mario Bava during his Danger Diabolik period, or if its easier just visualise a 1973 film with a lot of Theremin use on the soundtrack. Jerry Cornelius is a near future metaphysical James Bond, a multi-dimensional agent who veers more to Oscar Wilde than Ian Fleming, a polysexual dandy who roams the actinoid levels of reality to foil plots and promote chaos. Against the backdrop of a pop-art inspired end of the world, an era replete with rumours of the Americans nuking Amsterdam, against a car choked Trafalgar Square our hero becomes embroiled in some undisciplined stratagem concerning his opiate addicted sister and their lunatic brother, a conspiracy to build some supercomputer from the blueprints of his dead father’s estate and commence ‘The Final Programme’ that should usher in a new epoch and strata of human development. Accompanying and thwarting Jerry on his quest is the sexually adventurous Miss Brunner whom with the assistance of her own mainframe system and three mysterious scientists may just have sinister plans of their own….
Well, this was a pretty bad film when taken at face value and personally speaking I got pretty bored about an hour in – thank god I didn’t opt for that £100 extravagance eh? I’ve got nothing against free flowing, psychedelically charged lunacy but if you’re going to evoke the likes of Jodorowsky then you at least need to make it so bizarre and fresh that you can have a laugh at the sheer insanity, the sheer illogical incoherence of it all. All the jokes and set-pieces fall flat, what is trying to be a kind of metaphysical Withnail & I a decade before its time is more of a LSD tweaked On The Buses, there is a faint sort of louche, post-sixties comedown aura to the film, a sense of sexual abandon and narcotic indulgence that lurks in the background, but these qualities evaporate quite swiftly as you wait for a genuinely interesting and amusing scene or shard of dialogue, its all a bit of a chore I’m afraid. It’s a real cult movie, and by that I mean it’s cult would be very narrow and restricted to someone who very specifically has a passion for Seventies derived, British science fiction, someone who could reel off alternate credits for the likes of Hugh Griffith or Graham Crowden, someone who would smirk when the likes of Sandra Dickinson cropped up as a waitress in a restaurant near the end of the universe, that of course making obvious comparisons to the likes of this. That said it was quite odd and fun to see the likes of Sterling Hayden as some alternate world inversion of Jack D. Ripper – he’s an Ankh sporting, hippie general in The Final Programme – but for really drilling down into fan-boy territory in the vein of this article by John Paterson it was pleasing to see the exuberant Patrick Magee in action, you may remember him as the writer A Clockwork Orange or the Chevalier de Balibari in Barry Lyndon, he’s a face that also cropped up in plenty of other Seventies fare including a few Hammer pictures and he excels in delivering those slightly exaggerated, slightly hysterical performances that can brighten up even the most moribund of projects. It’s also the only other film I think I’ve ever seen with the Nazi goon Toht in it, playing a professional assassin, like many of the films appearances he only lasts for a single scene but a little digging around has just unearthed the revelation that Klaus Kinski was offered his role in Raiders and turned it down – crikey.
As I said I was a huge Michael Moorcock fan as a teenager, amongst that slightly canted Science Fantasy genre he was one of the pioneering writers, the creation of his own idiosyncratic multiverse where his various anti-heroes would embark on their perilous, occasionally misguided quests – be they Hawkmoon, or Corum, whether they were the Dancers at The End of Time or fan favourite Elric of Melnibone* - would occasionally cross paths in a manner similar to the Marvel Universe, as we all know that sort of intertextuality is a sweet, sweet elixir to the fan-boy crowd, myself included. Whilst he’s been enormously prolific over the past five decades – he has the discipline to get up in the morning, have a spot of breakfast and write for seven or eight hours before retiring for the evening - I’ve not read much of his stuff since my misbegotten youth, the odd short story collection or the likes of Mother London (one of the best ‘London’ books I’ve read by the way) here and there but I still, to this day, have never got round to actually reading the Cornelius novels, despite owning a couple of them later in the series I was and am still sufficiently anal to only read or watch material in its specified order – its just the way I’m made. It was therefore a treat to see Moorcock in the flesh after the screening, he’s another one of those eccentric, English wordsmiths like Jonathan Swift, Milton, William Blake, J.G Ballard or the similarly Rhododendron bearded Alan Moore, one of those imaginative colonists who weaved political and cultural satire into their fantastical tales. He was also in Hawkwind for a while, psychedelic rock fans, or at least I think he wrote some lyrics and hung out with them as part of the whole late Sixties, West London Notting Hill hippy scene….
Much of the interview revolved around how much Moorcock loathed the film due to just how divorced from his novel it was, apparently the director was one of the self important ‘I’m an Auteur’ types who rejected the novels themes and structure in favour what he felt needed to be said, in this case with thoroughly disastrous consequences. Moorcock explained that he is one of those authors who does feel some sense of duty to defend the integrity of his characters on behalf of the fans – he’s not a take the money and run type – and consequently he has not sanctioned any of his characters or series for adaptation since, such was his depression at the butchering of one of his most personally loved creations. I admire that commitment (although as he joked his agent doesn’t share this opinion), that sense of the characters you have conjured up being worthy of protection, of preserving the integrity of your imagination in the face of economic enticements. The inevitable Elric movie question was raised and I’m sorry to report that the project is pretty much dead, although given what those guys did with Pullman I can’t say I’m shedding a tear – I’m not a huge Pullman fan but their effort was one of the worst fantasy film adaptions of recent years. Whilst the project had progressed quite smoothly over the past decade and although Universal were keen to push forward a couple of flops earlier in the decade – Van Helsing and The Chronicles of Riddick – soured the top brass who were now uncertain of what to do with another ‘anti-hero’ story, the film has languished in development hell ever since. Moorcock cryptically revealed that one director whom he admired and whom remained nameless was keen to do it and had a great concept for visualising the tales with a respect for the source material, I genuinely wonder who that might be. He also revealed that he had recently finished a ‘Arthur C Clarke influenced Dr. Who story written in the style of P.G Woodhouse’ – make of that what you will but I think I’ll give it a miss Mike, I don’t really care for Dr. Who I’m afraid. So that’s that, another fine NFT event, I have couple of other things to look forward to over the next few weeks including a Q&A with a bona-fide British screen legend – should be fun eh??
* Don’t you just love web 1.0 design? No, me neither, but included for amusement value……
No, I’m not playing the ‘Birdie’ song so fuck off. I’ve been meaning to post a link to this amazing resource for a while, it prompts an amusing wonder down memory lane and I think it is an exemplar of just how cool the web can be sometimes – you can spend hours browsing that site if you’re in a musical mood. So with no apologies here are some magpie pluckings from that fabulous site, let’s kick off with a mirror;
Then there is always the ethereal Lush;
This was always my favourite. Anyway, moving on, Devo’s best;
Siouxse Sioux in Batman Returns soundtrack mode, this brings back memories;
This is a weird version, for obvious reasons;
Good fun – Mudhoney;
I’ll regret this, I was never that much of a goth but a few tracks of the, erm ‘Sisters’ have always been fond to me;
Brief and to the point;
For ultimate retro fun then let me introduce you to some playlists of the UK Chart Show – indie Version – which I’m sure will provide you with another rich vein of nostaglic investigation – here’s my favourite, and please forgive me a small private joke with some friends;
My coverage of The Final Programme screening and NFT Michael Moorcock Q&A is almost done, and a quick look around the London listings reveals a few potential films for the weekend – I’m almost tempted to do a Five Easy Pieces and Human Centipede double bill for the comic potential alone. OK, perhaps not, I’m also keen to give this a look which has had some terrific reviews, it really depends on my energy levels tomorrow as its been a hectic week and whilst I’ve managed to negotiate a two month extension to my current assignment today (thank fuck) I’d welcome a recuperative couple of days at home. We shall see….
Another break from the fully scoped reviews, my first Frightfest triple bill in preparation for the festival. First up, the UK’s hilarious 1983 answer to Alien;
And finally an old school classic;
But if you really want to talk about ultimate, gut-wrenching horror then dust off your cheque books – this is fucking horrific. Finally, the obligatory that has been doing the rounds, the last four minutes of that says it all….
Although I have been lucky enough to attend some of the events and special screenings surrounding the NFT’s Future Human season I did want to fit in a ‘straightforward’ screening, that is to say just a film, on its own, without any Q&A or interview to follow in an effort to do the season justice if that in any way makes sense. Considering my genre preferences selecting some SF film to go and see wasn’t going to be a particularly difficult task, I mused over the likes of Avalon which I haven’t seen and Soderbergh’s Solaris which I quite like, before deferring to James Cameron’s robust The Terminator, I figured after all the dense, philosophical SF stuff I’ve been watching over the past few weeks I really could with some stuff getting blown up, some judicious use of squibs and stunt-people, a film where the narrative obstacles are solved with explosives and shotgun blasts rather than erudite musings on the nature of mortality and infinity – in short, some fun.
Single, twenty-something Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) is going to have a pretty bad day. Leading a somewhat sedentary lifestyle in early eighties Los Angeles Sarah’s life is turned upside down when she becomes the target of an unstoppable, homicidal time-travelling android – Ahnoldt in his star cementing role – who has been sent back from 2029, a post nuclear holocaust future where man is engaged in a desperate battle with the machines to prevent our extermination. Unbeknownst to Sarah she is destined to be the mother of the resistances one true hope, the charismatic leader John Connor – check out those initials – who represents future mankind’s only hope of salvation and victory over Skynet’s merciless automatons. Whist the meek Sarah is no match for the relentless terminator assassin she has one slim chance for survival, the future resistance have sent back one of their most skilled warriors, Kyle Reece (Michael Bien) to defend Sarah and ensure the birth of the prospective messiah.
I haven’t seen the film for a good few years and I was looking forward to seeing it on the big screen in all its blue-hued, techno fetishistic neo-noir glory, thankfully the print did not disappoint and this was terrific fun. It’s a remarkably compact picture, in Cameron’s trademark style it bounds along with a relentless enthusiasm and is a textbook exemplar of how you make a superlative Hollywood action picture, with just the right balance of back-story and plot, the requisite action pieces – although I doubt the remorseless execution of the cops by Ahnoldt in his assault on the station house would be sanctioned today – the contemporarily impressive SFX, the attention to detail on lighting and costumes, the modernist soundtrack, it all moves along so efficiently you don’t have time to question its pulpy origins. It would make a great double-bill with Michael Mann’s Thief as both premier examples of that period’s aesthetical designs, the fethisization of the urban and industry, those glowing pools of neon reflecting over the surfaces of cars and rain-sodden streets, all the flash-forward stuff to LA circa 2129 was clunky in places but still held together, you can see where every penny of the modest $8 million budget was spent.
One has to question whatever happened to Michael Biehn? I know he cropped up in Planet Terror a few years ago but after some starring roles in James Cameron’s next couple of films you have to wonder why he didn’t quite make it. It was amusing to see the psychiatrist Dr. Silberman whose appearance got a laugh and of course the obligatory Bill Paxton cameo. That’s pretty much it for me and Jim on the big-screen, with the exception of Piranha 2: Flying Killers which I can’t see getting a screening soon I’ve caught up with all his movies on the big screen, as long as you don’t count the documentaries. So that’s it, I’m going to try to keep things a little more succinct around here so I’ll just close with the charming news that we shouldn’t really be worrying about an imminent holocaust emanating from our machines, we seem to be doing a pretty good of job of it ourselves without any outside assistance. Sweet dreams…
There is really only one place to begin;
The Dawn of Man. A montage of prehistoric images denotes the timeless passage of the years and decades, aeons before such concepts existed in the human imagination, as a collection of our simian cousins shelter from the elements, from rival clans and from the lethal predators of the epoch, a scrabble for sustenance amongst the arid African veldt. One morning the troop awakes to discover that a ominous, obsidian black monolith has appeared in their midst, its presence signalling a terrified rage amongst our forebears, a suspicion of the unknown and incomprehensible. Through association, through a mental leap mirrored in the films narrative we make the association that this mysterious object has ignited a flash of inspiration in one ape, our distant ancestor whom when toying with the discarded thighbone of a deceased tapir makes an imaginative vault forward of his own, to the strains of Also sprach Zarathustra, to utilize the first tool – humankind is on its way and it’s no accident that our first utensil is used to kill our fellow denizens for food - shifting our diet to carnivore - and to eliminate the aggressive leader of another ape clan, signalling the survival of the fittest through aggression, through belligerence and most crucially through technology…
Let’s hold on there for a second – before we get into the review proper I’d best cover the NFT event before I get carried away, and in the case of my favourite film of all time this is a distinct possibility. While I’ve loved many of the film talks and interviews at the NFT over the years in terms of an actual screening this was pretty much unsurpassed. This is the third time I’ve seen 2001 on the big screen, once of course back in the year 2001 as part of its limited London re-release and once a couple of days after I got back from Tokyo in 2006 with camera operator Kelvin Pike in attendance. This however was something else, it was Kubrick’s own master print of the film – and as such it is something of a sacred relic as it would be the print that all others would be graded and compared against for potential screenings – accompanied by a forty five minute presentation from Douglas Trumbull to set the context of the films production a half century ago. As with the Silent Running event we were treated to some behind the scenes photographs and anecdotes, in the interests of space much of the tales are recounted here. There wasn’t anything I hadn’t heard before – the development of the Slitscan process, the building of photographic techniques and models literally from scratch over a three year production period, the ubiquitous use of source lighting in the frame, the most incredibly fertile, creative atmosphere Trumbull said he has ever worked in – this is all well established but that article is a good synopsis. The screening itself was in breath-taking 70mm in the perfect environment of the NFT1, as an atheist I hesitate to claim it was some sort of religious experience but it was pretty damn close* considering the Trumbull introduction, the print and the culmination of a whole weekend of cinematic endeavours on my part – Inception, Silent Running, Toy Story 3D, 2001: A Space Odyssey - that’s actually quite a composite of movies eh? But I digress;
Through the most ambitious match-cut in cinema history hundreds of thousands of years are traversed in the blink of an eye, in a symmetrical marriage the bone, the first weapon transforms into a orbiting space vehicle, an ICBM launch platform although the Cold War background to the film was eventually jettisoned along with the Martin Balsam voiceover that remains in the original script. Throughout the film Kubrick suggests order, control and rationality through the compositions and editing framework, as with the photo above the aura of an overwhelming, indistinct intelligence lurking behind the screen and consequently is alluded to subconsciously throughout the four acts of the movie – the Dawn Of Man, The Moon and Second Monolith, the Discovery Mission, Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite – which also form a robust spine to the films narrative, a harmonious structure that can be alluded to birth, adolescence, middle-age and death. Those graceful movements of the spaceships gliding amongst the stars as the Blue Danube seduces the viewer are a counterpoise to our uncivilised, brutal genesis, and in these movements there is a majesty to human achievement, an inherent beauty and sense of civilisation that has apparently divorced us from our animal instincts and origins. It bears mention that these sequences are unsurpassed today, they are immaculate some forty years later in terms of SFX and were a quantum leap forward in terms of the craft of film-making in comparison to the B-Movie progenitors that Kubrick viewed as part of his exhaustive research methods.
But with this beauty there is a detachment, a certain aloofness amongst these future scientists and astronauts, almost all evidence of emotion has been supressed – Consider Poole’s response to his parents birthday message, or Bowman’s response to the lethal manoeuvring of HAL or even Heywood Floyd’s controlled pleasantries with his Soviet colleagues – even after a revelation of epoch shattering ramifications, that we are not alone as another monolith, another inert artifact has been discovered buried beneath the Tycho crater on the Moon, rationality and logic reign supreme. After docking at the space station our first character emerges, Dr. Heywood Floyd (William Sylvester) who is leading the scientific delegation to unearth the origins of the mysterious menhir, and ensure total secrecy of the discovery due to the potential cultural and sociological carnage that would be caused by such a revelation. After delivering an obtuse presentation, thanking his American colleagues for working so hard to maintain the cloak of secrecy a sojourn is made out to the excavation point to inspect this tombstone to human dialectics. It is interesting that the film doesn’t really have a central character – except perhaps HAL but we’ll come back to him – as Kubrick and Clarke didn’t want to be distracted by such hollow narrative conventions, perhaps examining these events on an individuals belief system , instead aiming for a much broader investigation into the ramifications on our species rather than any particular protagonist. It’s a frequently made point but it beats repeating for emphasis, barely anyone had seen the earth from space and of course we hadn’t even reached the Moon by 1968 (I still wonder if that apocryphal story about the Apollo 11 crew is true, them musing over having a joke after they’d reached the sea of tranquility and relaying that they’d discovered ‘something ‘to mission control – that would have been awesome, after all they did watch the film the day before blast off I think) and for the most part Kubrick and his crew got most of their predictions right, hiring NASA consultants Frederick Ordway and Harry Lange as technical advisors on the picture certainly paid dividends.
One of the films submerged motifs is sustenance and the theme is slyly inserted throughout the films four movements. The first is during the aforementioned shift from vegetarian to carnivore as we make our first unsteady steps on the evolutionary ladder, secondly during the flight to Tycho Floyd and his companions consume nutrition that is emitted in tepid cubes - we are divorced by millions of years from our hunter gather instincts – and the most basic elements of survival are now mediated by technology. Thirdly Poole and Bowman’s in what now has become a SF staple preparing similarly tepid cuisine during their mission to Jupiter and finally of course Bowman’s crowning meal prior to his transformation to the star child. If the three basic drivers of human instinct are to eat, to find shelter (which throughout the film is again supplied by our technology and tools in our spacecraft that operate as hermetically sealed, purely functional vessels) and to procreate, the latter may seem throughly absent in this cold, mechanical future but it’s present according to some of the more esoteric theories I’ve read on the film, as with the mechanical couplings during the opening titles of Strangelove the space vehicles move through a balletic courtship and certain scenes allegedly echo sperm being absorbed into the fallopian tube – take a look at 5.00 onward here – and the repercussions of the act are seen three times – Floyd’s phone call to his daughter (that’s Kubrick’s daughter Vivian fact-fans), the creation of a new lifeform in the form of HAL and of course the image of the star child reborn at the film’s climax. I happen to think that such a contention is weak but whatever turns you on I guess…
In an echo of the first scene the monolith, now discovered emits a powerful radio signal (5.00 onward here) to the outskirts of Jupiter and we shift to the lengthiest sequence of the film, the Discovery mission commanded by a five man crew, three of whom are in suspended animation to preserve valuable resources and two astronauts Frank Poole (Gary Lockwood) and Dave Bowman (Keir Dullea), assisted in their mission by to my mind the masterstroke of the film, as it seems that in our middle age our tools seem to be overwhelming, superseding us and evolving beyond our control, after all any imperfection can only be attributable to ‘human error‘ – yes, we’ve finally come to HAL. First of all the coincidence that the acronym Heuristically programmed ALgorithmic computer just happens to follow the letters immediately before IBM is just that, one of those coincidences and not a submerged joke on the part of Clarke or Kubrick. HAL is the only character with any personality in the film and its no mistake that ‘he’ is the only character whose eyes we see through in frequent POV shots, in what I can attribute to Kubrick’s particularly ironic sense of humor he makes us sympathise with a creation of silicon and steel in this brave new world, not the neutral, humorless figurines of flesh and bone.
A composition that echoes the stargate, the foreground suffocating the astronauts in the middle-ground, in the background squats HAL in a typically omnipotent pose. Anyway, during the Trumbull Q&A disbelief was still expressed at how some of the effects in this sequence were achieved, particularly the astonishing centrifuge scenes as seen here, alas I’m not the person to spoil the fun so you’ll just have to find out for yourself. During the secret mission HAL malfunctions and makes a faulty detection of a failing satellite dish that would compromise the ships communication links with mission control, a failure that forces Bowman and Poole to consider deactivating the machine. When Poole is in EVA, replacing the satellite components HAL makes a lethal decision – just like his creators in order to survive – and severs Poole’s air supply, prompting Bowman to make a doomed rescue effort and barter for his re-entry to the ship in what has become an all time classic exchange. One classic deserves another as we proceed to HAL’s death, the films one and only obliquely emotional moment – at least in the sense of characterisation within the films world - Bowman disconnects HAL and a emergency message is revealed which details the true details of the mission and the monolith, evidently we must kill our creations in order to evolve. It was this scene and the sequences to follow that arrested me as a child and catapulted the film into my all time favourite position, it is absolutely magnificent and moving, there is a certain irony that the apotheosis of mankind’s achievements to date, the creation of an artificial lifeform and thus the most brilliant and revelatory tool (that phrase again) that our civilisation has crafted almost thwarts mankind’s ecstatic transformation, our pride, paranoia and neurosis being invested into the creations we use to tame and explore our environment. Prior to his passing the neurotic apparatus has also terminated the life support of the three hibernating crew members in what I’d wager is one of the most chilling (no pun intended) kill scenes committed to celluloid, the victims ensconced in sarcophagus that brings to mind Egyptian burial shrouds in another strand of transformation that will shortly be fully realised in the films most challenging sequence – Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite;
A film, like any other successful work of art should ask more questions than it answers in my opinion and it was the hallucinatory final sequence to Kubrick’s visual symphony that still confuses, befuddles and bewitches viewers to this day. That marriage of discordant music and phantasmagoric imagery is utterly unique and unsurpassed to me, I love how it has garnered a wealth of interpretations over the intervening four decades, the visual formations of the planets, moons and stars all suggesting a controlling hand, a sense of purpose and reason to our reality, before plunging into the stargate itself where the visual cues of rotation and alignment explode, shifting from the vertical to horizontal to ignite a sense of being transported to somewhere other, to somewhere utterly alien, I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again – exactly how did such a sequence get smuggled into a such a big-budget, event movie? This sequence was crafted over forty years ago, when our scrying of the heavens was still very much in its infancy, when you see images such as this you have no fucking soul if you are not moved and awed by the incomprehensible scale of our universe, here’s Carl who can put things slightly more majestically than me.
The film’s most pressing motif is vision, how we interpret information through our primary sense, a crystallisation of the Kubrick gaze that runs throughout his work. The editing structure of the films final flow that I have embedded at the end of this post confirms this supposition, as Bowman looks from one stage of his evolution to another in a POV cut to celerity tempo is a brilliant employment of cinematic grammar – a tempo also employed during the stargate sequence - proving that this is an artist working at the peak of his powers. I consider 2001: A Space Odyssey to be one of the all time great works of art, of any medium, ever. Quite honestly who else has attempted to cover the entire genesis, evolution and future of our species in two and a half hours? There are Picasso’s and Michelangelo’s masterpieces of course, but in the field of film, the decisive art form of the twentieth century it is quite simply incomparable. The film is a voyage akin to those of the Argonauts, of Odysseus, Theseus or the Knights of the Round Table in terms of artistic expression, it has the Odyssey sobriquet for a reason I think, from ape to man and then beyond, traversing upon Sibylline possibilities. If you skim through that original script that I linked to above you can see just how much exposition Kubrick stripped out and that in a sense is the real strength of the film, the audience fills in the blanks, you interpret its meanings and propositions,the viewer draws their own conclusions from its visual structure, its narrative mysteries and staggering divinations. Here is Tarkovsky’s response to the Stargate sequence from his similarly cerebral Solaris, apparently he found Kubrick’s concatenations amusing, his fluctuations from B&W to colour drawing down the epic and cosmological to the mundane and industrial, it’s almost a political reprimand of its era;
How accurate were Kubrick and Clarke’s predictions? Well, it’s a mixed bag of course but it’s still a pretty good effort I think. Coming back to Trumbull’s revelation of the missing footage I’m thinking some things are best left undisturbed, just as Kubrick had his assistant Leon Vitali destroy all the outtakes from his films back in 1999 why interfere with and potentially obfuscate perfection? So that’s close to 3,000 words but maybe I should have just bowed down to the prowess of 15 year old Margaret Stackhouse whose review – which can be seen here – was considered one of the most intelligent and insightful on the film by Clarke and Kubrick, even as they both refused to be drawn in to any specific explanation of the films – as Stanley said “It’s not a message I ever intended to convey in words. 2001 is a nonverbal experience…. I tried to create a visual experience, one that bypasses verbalized pigeonholing and directly penetrates the subconscious with an emotional and philosophic content.” – amen to that. As is my idiom here are some interesting documentaries and curios that orbit the film, (the assertions by the actress who played the stewardess in that documentary are total fabrications by the way), arguably the apotheosis of Kubrick’s career, I’ll be moving on to some other SF material next week from my old chums Michael Moorcock and Jim Cameron. But I would be remiss not to close on the final movement of the film, a sequence I still find faintly terrifying (it really, really freaked me out as a kid) in its amaranthine claustrophobia, a human zoo that begets our species final evolutionary metamorphosis, I’m not a religious man but for me 2001 is a seraphic experience in its final fervour, immaculate and impeccable in every way;
* I’m joking. Mostly.
Another stop-gap I’m afraid. I’ve been steadily working on my 2001 post between another brutal work week and whilst the structure and framework are crystallised, whilst the photos and clips are mostly embedded and the first couple of paragraphs are finalised I want to get this one absolutely perfect, it will take a while longer but that’s this weekend’s mission - please be patient. I’m also toying with re-designing the whole design of the blog which complicates this activity, I doubt that will pan out with these ambitions but we’ll see how things go. Apart from this I’ve not got much on this weekend, maybe I’ll venture out of the flat and go and see this or this for a break – yeah I know the latter looks terrible but I could do with a break , in that spirit lets enjoy some lightweight pyrotechnics;
All in one steadicam take, most impressive. Keeping on a Kubrick theme of sorts I saw the film below last week, it’s an interesting piece of work that’s worth a look, beyond the violence in that clip there is a studious aura to the film, a distanced examination of mythology that Refn was aiming for with some impressive photography, a stoic delivery and a curious finale;
Alas one of the finest war films isn’t up on YT but the below will have to do, a montage of Malick which may be a minor methadone fix to keep you going util we finally get the word. It’s not got to Venice or Toronto, fingers crossed for London, and can someone please tell me when this will be available? I guess the copyright holders are strategically waiting for developments….
Those Hans Zimmer scores work well don’t they? Moving on, just to be increasingly lazy here is something else I’m stumbled across, again I wait with baited breath for another work of genius from my favourite American maverick…
I’m sure his new effort will be…..well, whatever I’ll be there, front and centre on opening day. Finally, maybe, I should just throw my fragile sanity to the dogs once again and indulge in this:
It’s just down the road in Borough so I’m tempted, especially in an effort to perk up a normally dull Sunday night. Anyhow for now I’m off to watch The Slumber Party Massacre as part of my continuing Frightfest homework, what can I say, I’m committed one way or another….
I worry for my sanity sometimes, I’ve launched into an irregular monster movie and horror flick season this month to get in the homework zone for Frightfest, I watched Them! last night and found myself sympathising with the radioactive killer ants – this does not bode well. I’m looking forward to this tonight;
Fun little site here. Apart from Frightfest there are a few movie events on the horizon, alas it also seems lady luck punches me in the knackers again as the UK premiere of the newly restored Metropolis clashes with the opening night of the festival – I’m not happy with that development. Still, every cloud has a silver lining it seems, I have tickets to see a few other items and monster movie wise things are looking positively insane as del Toro has finally announced his next project, in sanity shredding, psyche pulverizing 3D no less….
Well that was fun. Fantastic weather, some pleasing summer tracks before the carnage of the evening. For my own, selfish prosperity here is whom we saw;
Then the almighty, the one and only The Fall;
These are in no particular order by the way, and it was a torrent of electronica for the rest of the day including Mouse On Mars;
It’s nice to have some music on the blog for a change, don’t you think? There was Moderat;
Then some Silver Apples whom were very Kraftwerk;
And then some more dancing like a loon in the Bugged Out tent until bedtime;
Given that this all unfolded a half hour walk from my flat and therefore it was easy to
get stagger home means that it shall be repeated next year.