After all, it's just a ride….

Chaos Reigns….

excalAs Alan Partridge might say ‘that….was a week’. Memo to self, when in the honeymoon period of a new assignment don’t get delusions of grandeur and volunteer for extra duties in order to show willing, as you might just get awarded duties on two of the most staggeringly and fiendishly complex programmes you’ve ever been involved in, and spend all week furiously writing funding strategies to raise £500,000 squillion quid from a hilarious portfolio of potential stakeholders, diluting argot infected lobbying papers down to 2 page action plans, digest 150+ page twenty year planning manifestos and generally feel as if you’ve bitten of more than even your voracious appetite can chew. In my muddled head I had a plan to continue one of my side projects here this evening and complete a detailed review of a horror classic which is perhaps 60% completed, after crunching through thousands of words this week I simply can’t face it, so tonight’s entertainment will be a chaotic mélange of some stuff I’ve picked up during the week, heck at this point I don’t think I can even stomach seeing Flight tomorrow to tick off another portion of the Oscar© checklist as that would mean I’d have to craft my review before festivities commence again on Monday morning – I’m simply exhausted. But enough of my first world, deeply tedious work challenges, here is a badly scored Excalibur montage;

One of the benefits of my resumed commute is the opportunity to read more, I’ve finally got through January’s Sight & Sound which contained a fantastic ‘deep focus’ article on the past ten years of neo-noir pictures, expertly charting the peaks and canyons of one of my favourite and quietly resilient genres, musing on the changing semiological definitions and murderous movements of those that walk in an urban and spiritual malaise. James elects and explores the most proficient pantheon of the past decade or so including the likes of Mulholland Drive, In The CutBrick, Memento, Sin City, A History Of Violence, Tell No One, Drive and many others which cobweb out from his chief suspects to incorporate other lines of inquiry, connecting the lipstick smeared entry wounds with an adroit, trenchcoated and resigned rain-swept glee. Alas the article isn’t available on-line so you’ll just have to go and buy your own dossier, in any case this gives me an excuse to post one of my favourite scenes from Mann’s unappreciated Collateral which also got a damn fine reappraisal;

I guess the big news that I’m hopelessly out of date mentioning is of course Star Wars Episode VII – A New Throat being directed by J.J. ‘don’t call me Jameson’ Abrams. From a corporate perspective he’s the ideal man for the job, a talented purveyor of adrenaline fuelled cinema whom can handle the creatures, the SFX and genre trappings with professional accuracy, unlike many young whippersnappers in the directors chair he’s a prime dimension Metteur en scène, not liable to bring his personal baggage or thematic fascinations to the project, like Michael Curtiz or Anthony Mann he has a grasp of swashbuckling cinema which is neutrally perfect for the task at hand – and hopefully he won’t be distracted by the umbrella impetus to sell intergalactic schooners of product. I’m not being negative, as previously mentioned I don’t have any real rancor in this fight, I like J.J’.s work on a purely excitement driven front and if anyone can revitalise that crippled franchise then he’s the man for the job.  The Red Letter Media gang holographed this news a few years ago;

Sweet baby Jesus on a moped and his clan on skateboards this post is a mess isn’t it? That’s what twelve-hour days do for you after ten months of unemployed bliss, just the whole interacting with other professional people has taken on a grim and resigned effort – why can’t I be project managing nonsense like this? That sounds like fun, and with no significant purpose to its empty efforts. Now you’re probably querying the Boorman references ‘up-post’, right? Well, the good news is that during April and May the BFI are hosting a full retrospective of his work, and to keep the chaos flowing  I am drawing my plans together for a trio of reviews, Excalibur is a must but what else should I see on the epic screen?  Answers on a rust encrusted, sorely underused blade of destiny please. Finally, for a little decompression, here is an elegiac video essay which I should really save for a Malick prologue given that To The Wonder opens here in London three weeks today, however this is simply too beautiful to suppress;

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