Sunday, December 30, 2007

I Need To Get Paid To Write About the Damn Movies

Or, I need a car, because I haven't seen enough current movies this year.

But, here's my official Top Ten of 2007. All other 2007 entries eligible for next year, including Juno, Sweeney Todd, Control, Charlie Wilson's War, There Will Be Blood, etc.

Dekalog still makes the list.

10. Grindhouse
9. Superbad
8. Across The Universe
7. Bug
6. The Darjeeling Limited
5. Eastern Promises
4. The Lives of Others
3. American Gangster
2. Dekalog
1. No Country For Old Men

Had to remind myself what I'd seen this year, and I'd left off a few notables. I've been out of my gourd lately, because I completely forgot to mention American Gangster, which is no small oversight, seeing as how it's Ridley Scott's best film since Blade Runner.

Honorable mention must go to the makers of Shoot 'Em Up, the fuckinest fuckin' fucker of a movie I've ever seen. We were right, Smoke Frog, we were right.

Thanks also to that one guy who screamed "Holy Shit!" during Spider Man 3 when Pete b-slapped MJ.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Wanna Be Writin' Somethin' Got to Be Writin' Somethin'

Early, I know, but here's my Top Ten. Read 'em and weep, making exceptions of course for the as of now unseen by me Charlie Wilson's War, Sweeney Todd, and There Will Be Blood (The very latter may well top the list retroactively once I've seen it.)

There are others I've missed, but in a feat of laziness (and fiduciary apoplexy, resulting in increased Netflix turnover later on) I'll just take a cue from years past and put them on my 2008 list when I finally see them (again, the caveat here being that Paul Thomas Anderson's movie, if the standey I saw for it and the early reviews I've read of it are any indication, will fuck me long and my socks will still be on).

10. Grindhouse - I was one of the lucky handful of the faithful who sprawled out in a sparsely populated theater to see this one on Easter Weekend. It was one of the filthiest, silliest, bloodiest, most ridiculously over-the-top exercises in self-indulgent movie making nonsense I've ever seen. And I laughed my ass off for the first half and was truly knocked out by Tarantino's.

9. Superbad - Fuckin' McLovin' amazing.

8. Babel - Metaphysically and artistically, this is the movie Crash could never have even thought to hope to be.

7. Pan's Labyrinth - Bitch knows how to cut a bitch in the mouth.

6. Children of Men - Gets better every time you watch it. These are all 2006ers, but I saw 'em this year, and I doubt they'll be topped any time soon. When it happens, you'll know.

5. Dekalog - Saw all 10 of these this year. It's from about 20 years ago. Recommended viewing for anyone who thinks about right and wrong. Also recommended viewing for anyone who will someday die.

4. The Darjeeling Limited - In all fairness, this is higher on the list than the Meso-American Triad and the freakin' Kieslowski because it's an honest-to-god 2007er. This one's more direct, more simple, and less quixotic than The Life Aquatic, and it really only rivals Tenenbaums. For those who simply can't be pleased by Wes Anderson making the same film about the aloof, dry types he's consumed with, well, look elsewhere. Unless, you're one of the straights, and you wanna see Natalie Portman naked, of course (What's that? You've already gone to Fandango?). Me, I'm fine if he keeps playin' this ditty for as long as we're both here.

3. The Lives of Others - Tightly constructed and unflinching, this is an unexpected German companion piece to The Conversation and Blow Up, in its own way.

2. No Country For Old Men - Even for the Coens, this is a bizarre and cold film. It's also one of the best I have ever seen, and that beats a lot of competition, including some from the Coen Boys themselves. I'm not sure I find it as nihilistic as some have (particularly Andrew Sarris, who is not a bitch, not really. His review was cordial.)
I don't remember being affected so suddenly and powerfully by an ending. At least not since Magnolia.

1. Speak of the devil, I really don't know what the number one will be. Is it gonna be Sweeney Todd? I love Burton, Depp, Bonzo Bonham Carter and Co, but never enough for them to top my year-end best. Aaron Sorkin? You comin' back to us? Well, the good Congressman's story, even in your un-coke stained (and reportedly splendid this time around) hands, is going to be hard-pressed to beat my adoration for what the Coens accomplished with No Country.

It's more than likely going to be a showdown between No Country and There Will Be Blood, unless Juno really is as good as they say, and by that, I mean Citizen Pregnant Fucking Kane.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

And the Award...

...For most perfect Google search to yield a result for this site goes to:

"Christopher Plummer Fanfiction"

Yeah. Fanfiction. That's half right.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Andrew Sarris is a Bitch

He's the only reason the Tomatometer(tm) is scoring a 96% for No Country For Old Men.

Didn't Pauline Kael debunk your ass in the late sixties?

Whatevs, Mr. Auteur Theory.

That movie [insert wild wobbly Jesse-style praise here]

Mind you, no large gesture of praise would amount to hyperbole. Not even from 'round these parts, or even, gasp, from 'round them parts.

Saturday, November 17, 2007


Feliz Cumpleaños

Or so sang sonorously Señor Wattenbarger, to my Granny today, at the surprise birthday party we threw for her.

Incidentally, Obi Wan and Señor send their love to us, be we on the west coast or in the far east, or anywhere in between.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Blip Bootwa Blip Wop Let's Make 'em Bounce

No he escrito últimamente, pero...

Fine, sure I'll post a bit, since I had to wait 'til asked, and have a very hungry second.

My recent adventures, mind, will pale in comparison to Jef's. (Read up, and be afraid, while laughing.)

Same's true for the westward perigrinations of our very own More Human Than Human Slavicist. Good luck on the Sorbian. We here thought it was dying. Shows what we here know.

Also, I never see you anymore, Cara, and I find it often cause for concern. I know you've been busy, but I miss your prose every time I get a little bit of it. Your post taste good. Like, in the mouth.

As fer me? Well, I'm pretty sure I'm either a picaro or a one's own garden cultivator, but I can't be both. This past month has been wild, rockstar, full of mistakes, blunders, miracles, and mostly laced with placid-sense-of-calm. All for good reason, but the sooner that mellowness passes, the better.

Addendum: I've missed this happening ever since I moved sites, but, I suppose inevitably, the google searches are coming back, including weekly searches for "Chateau Neuf Du Pap", thanks to this post.

Also, the number of searches for "Christopher Plummer Gay" are making me giddy.

Addendum II: Storm From the East: Rhys, you should call me. Been too long.

Elektro: Santos

Truth of the Matter is, He Said, She is: No Country For Old Men - McCarthy

Waiting Impatiently For: No Country For Old Men

Let's Get High: The Darjeeling Limited, Water, American Gangster

Thursday, November 08, 2007


Oh dear. We're renting Dreamcatcher. Words I never thought I'd hear myself saying, but we must. Someone. Anyone. I must see this.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Next Sunday, A.D.

So, I'm an especial doofus, jackhole and nincompoop for having not called, on Halloween, Holly, my dear friend and partner in humanitarian music delivery this week at Janie's.

Holly manages a feat of editing panache while maintaining verbal (and emotional) devotion to the show that formed us, and I was along for the ride, quipping and laughing my ass off at jokes and songs I've heard a million times and still love with uproarity.

Go there. Be filled with mirth.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Getting a Reaction from the Geiger Counter...

This Halloween, make sure you take a stroll down to Barstoolio Lane, 'cause she's doin' a Countdown-to-All-Hallow's-Music-A-Thon, where you'll find kickin' remixes of Danny Elfman and other assorted goodies. She's also revealed my most sinister mix, maybe ever, right here.

Her copy is FTW! (Also FTW, her photoshopping, see below)

Here's a link to my set, right click as per usual.

1. Roxiller - Fear

2. Yelle - A Cause De Garcons (Sta mix)

3. Justice vs Simian - We Are Your Friends (Scottie B, King Tutt, and Samir mix)

4. Mr. Oizo - Nazis

5. Santos - Elektro

6. Lostep - Because We Can

7. Chris Carter - Creature Feature

8. Mr. Oizo - Nazis (Justice mix)

9. Armand Van Helden - I Want Your Soul (Fake Blood mix)

10. Klaxons - Gravity's Rainbow (Soulwax mix)

Monday, October 22, 2007

You'll Never Be Alone Again

Well come on.

Still not sure where I stand on Justice's regalia, memorable as it is....

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Only Poetry I've Ever Written That I'm Proud Of.... about Star Wars. So, I'll give this over to a finer hand:

Fuck You, mister,

Fuck your sister,

Fuck your brother,

Fuck your mother,

Fuck your pop--

Hey! I'm a cop!

- I'm a Cop, by Thomas Pynchon

Sign (one of many) that he's postmodern: He left out "Fuck your uncle".

That little ditty's not directed at anyone. I'm not rattling off aggression. It just makes me smile.

That's all I got fer right now, folks, and the Camino browser recognises neither the spelling of Pynchon or Camino. It also, tellingly, doesn't recognise postmodern.

I will say this, I'm rumblin' some funnies deep down somewhere. I sense it when my trick knee starts achin'. Kinda like when there's a hard rain comin'. Hard rain's comin', and that always leads to some funny. Watch this space.

Lend Me Your Ears and I'll Sing You a Song: Across the Universe, The Lives of Others, Out of the Past

Dance, Too Much Smarty in the Pants: Gore Vidal - United States: Essays

Oh My God, That's the Funky Shit: Alex Metric

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Worst. Whorehouse. Ever.

Why, yes, I do exist as a mere expediter of your movie larnin'. I like funnelling links to Ebert's reviews into you as if you were a right viscous cinematographic feedhole. Ignore that, if you can.

Don't, however, ignore this.

And I can't help it that he just reviewed COM on Friday. I haven't got much to write about at the moment, bloggily, so until I can bargle nargle zouse, well, you know the rest.

Im in ur mnd's I

Mkin Metfors. Kfusedthxbai

Friday, October 05, 2007

I've Got You, Babe


"Along the way, they are pursued by Homeland Security troops, and there is a chase scene with one of the most sudden and violent moments I have ever seen in a film. Not all of the chases in all of the Bournes equal this one, shot in a single take by one camera, for impact."

He Was Never Once Paid by the Word: Bleak House

All the President's Stab: Zodiac

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Are You a Replican or a Replicant?

Ridley Scott, you will never make sense to me. Knowing when to quit? Not you. I hope I can see this in a theater, what with the 8000 Lines per Frame F/X restoration. I like my eyes, and I want to like, even more, the way they see.

Ambiguity, however, seems to find itself only in your post-post-post production mentality, and not, sadly, where it belongs.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Even knowing full well that Ebert has marked his return with heaps of praise upon numerous films the likes of which might just indicate his elation to be back at work rather than indicating their own actual greatness (time will tell, but many will disagree with his assessment of Shoot 'Em Up. Not me, though), I'm still thrilled that his trumpeting of the Meso-American Triad is in full-swing.

After this, we must still wait impatiently for his review of Children of Men.

Now, Iñárritu is my least favorite of the three. Del Toro and Cuarón don't constrain themselves with a "hyperlink" narrative structure, and yet, I think Iñárritu probably achieved as much as he could with the plot(s) of Babel, a film I loved much more than 21 Grams. There's a palpable, yet undeniably mystical connection between the different threads comprising the third of his trilogy, a giant strength this time around. Babel builds on the possibilities of this structure instead of relying on it. Few recent films have achieved this kind of metaphysics. It's tempting to believe that Iñárritu has found what he was searching for.

Ebert's review of Babel lends ink to almost everything I was unable to articulate about it. Even if you weren't blown away by the film, you should read the above review, solely because it's an example of criticism achieving power all on its own. It evokes a movie that either you still haven't seen, or possibly, you saw but still haven't seen. It's the best thing Ebert's written since his illness. Don't believe me? Wait until the last sentence.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Didn't He/She Forget 'Pansexual'?

I'm all postin' with the computer on my belly. This is unusual for me, but readers, my belly is a tad less buoyant than it was a few months after I purchased my computer, pretty little gateway into a pretty little sedentary lifestyle that my Macintosh was. For now, I know of nothing more to report, save that I must find a better job (full-time would be good), base of operations, car, set of prospects (of all the type you'd imagine me looking for), a little energon, and a lot of luck.

There would be more to post, blast it, were it not for my one foot in the doldrums and one foot lord knows elsewhere, but that's the extent of the poetry in it, for now.

Switch Bitch: The Kingdom (Riget) - Series II

Closer before Closer was Closer: The Passion of Anna

Monday, September 10, 2007

Wow. Just. Wow.

My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult

Here's a link to my latest set, The Derridiculous Ghettoblaster.

Janie asked me to rattle off some copy for her whenever the fancy bit me, so I chose to do a track-by-track commentary at her bitchin' Noise pad, upon the unveiling of the set.

Big thanks to her for hosting me and servicing my DJ Ego, and big thanks to Holly for evangelizing the sounds to a new and sophisticated crowd.

The Adam Freeland influence (his DJ work more than his production work, really) has always weighed heavily on my choices, and I'm glad to say that where the proper music goes, I can only follow. It's really the most fun I can have without taking my clothes off. Most of you are luckier for that, eh?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Good News, Everyone!

Non-Post, but it's been ten years, and the man's back.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Heads or Tails

Toronto's shiny right now, and the more I read these, the more apoplectic I become, for I am very, very far from there.

Oh, to be credentialed, throttled from theater to theater, borne back ceaselessly into the raisinettes, and heedlessly transformed by what is all very much happening right now. This is a strong year.

When the time comes, I follow the Cannes Festival and Telluride (it would be fun to go, but no biggie if that never happens). I generally could care less about Sundance's Little-Indie-Shitfit-of-Sexually-Confused-Adolescents-and-Semi
-Learning-A-Valuable-Lesson-Doggerollcall. (Or LISOSCASADTAOLAVLD, as it's otherwise known), though I know for a fact I'm being unfair to many good films that have premiered there.

None of these festivals urge me towards the light quite like Toronto. Telluride's a close second. Either way, what I'm getting at here, is any one of 'em would be a great beat to cover. Great beat.

Mighty Fine Pickin' an' a Dingin': Spoon - Gimme Fiction

Everything's Gonna Be Just Fine: Burner of Corpses - Fuks

Love, Blood and Rhetoric: Hamlet (Branagh)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Have You Ever Seen a Human Heart?

To A Dreaming Experiment:

Good Show. Wish I Could Be There.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Thumb Wars

Linky Post:

Couldn't be more right.

Also, here's the silliest litigation of all time, this hour.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

This Was Fun For Me

Earlier this week, at the campus bookstore:


Me: So, yes, I've found your section number. You'll need--

Customer: Hold on, I'ma write this down

Me: Alright, you'll need Timaeus and Critias, by Plato.

Customer: Timbus and Crimunn. Who's that by?

Me: Plato. Next you'll need--

Customer: That's Plato, by Timbus and Crimunn.

Me: Yep...You'll also need The Analects of Confucius.

Customer: Who's that one by?

Me: Scatman Crothers. Thanks for comin' in.


Ok, well that last bit's apocryphal, as the customer was somebody's dad, sweetly gathering book info for his daughter.

Ah, cowwage.

Philatelite: The Decalogue

Coming Soon: A new flyin' bassline in your face(line?)

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Hideous Control Now

This is my graduation video:

Friday, August 10, 2007


Not sure about the sound quality here, but I tested out the first random free podcasting host I found.

You can find it here.

That's a little set I did last summer, and I mostly wanted to share it for the first three tracks.

I've got some killer stuff lying in wait for the lot of you to taste, coming soon, if this was a success.

So, gimme some feedback on the sound quality and let me know if there's any consensus on my needing to try this elsewhere.

Also, the name of that podcast site is probably going to change, as it's very late and I lack clear judgment.

The Newest in New

This here label's the quirkiest of recent memory.

It's French, Bitches

You Call Your Musical Minimal...

To this crew of people I've never even met (I imagine you all as muppets), who've given me such rising accolades over here, I'm humbled.

Thanks to Holly for fighting the true fight this week. We got our own fortune and glory, now and later.

For my part, it's been good for me to aide in exposing people to the music (and hopefully not too much to myself!), because the plight of breaks has often been that it's either too dark or too bizarre in some ways to be main-floor material, which I've been yet again reminded recently, at a much different locale.

Breaks at large are not necessarily all of that piece, but I tend to skew my sets towards the ruff and ragged, and at other points towards the brainy or the head-scratchy. I can't change this. There are parts of the world, and the scene, that have figured this out as funky, but most either want pretty or hard, and nary the twain shall meet between the feet. Apparently.

BT once said he was in to music that took a few listens to absorb, grasp, and yes, finally love. I guess I'm like that too, though I can't write music like he does (or at all).

If everyone were as opened minded as this week's cast, crew and audience, we preachers, Holly, PB, myself and others, would be on top.

Addendum: Also, though it might've turned the sky crimson(er) this past week, whither Charlie in this deba(t)(cl)e? Gathering ye a new set, I hope?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

And Behold, the Void Opens Up Beneath Your Feet

I've just finished my schoolin'.

No, I don't know what the fuck I'm going to do. That's settling in. Sinking in. Percolating. Fearorizing. But. I'm going to let that go for now, because my little b-bwoy mix that could is Holly's pop-rocks/soda pop explosion over at Janie's.

Means the world to me, Little Petal. Thanks.

Phew. Seven year plan. When you consider I didn't know what the fuck to do away from home, didn't pick a major until 2002, and then sojourned to Moravia for a full year sometime after that, seven years is just fine, and I needed the extra two. I'm a slow builder, right. Yes.

Love you, my friends, betters and compatriots.

Here's hoping for that elusive American Second Act.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Ok, I thought I was done, but Ebert had to go bitchslap silly 'ol Jonathan Rosenbaum, and well, here I am, tub of popcorn and big frightening Jack Napier grin on ma face.

I Have an Ego

And it's being validated this week.

So, I've decided to compile all my setlists from mixtapes and otherwise, right here.

The germ of this is that I'm being validated by fellow Kid 606 Lover (and boy could that mean something more than it used to...).

...Anyway, she's doing so with Charlie's favorite set of mine ever!

You'll be able to viddy that link on a regular basis at the bottom of my Top Ten Chart, which, y'all should check up on once in awhile and then meander around to sites like these:




Phew. Enough Links. Go. Play. I have one more final, for maybe the rest of my life, and it's tomorrow.

Like a Bottle of Chateau Neuf Du Pap

Third Round, and you two have had a cigarette, I gather?

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Monday, August 06, 2007

I Will Attack, and You Don't Want That

Oh, hilarious.

So, Holly vs. Longhorn Book Deal in a cage match at The Great Barstoolio's (that place with all the funny sex music talk):

The musical mise-en-scène?

Why, if it isn't house vs. breaks, the original Abel and Cain.

Only, we're totally Cain. When you see that forehead mark, you know the funky trouble's comin'.

Fly, you fools.

Though, lately, I have been talking up the death of the genre boundary, I must still insist that that's less to do with being frustrated with breaks at all (quite the opposite), and more to do with the whole tired lot of house, d'n'b and otherwise genre-strangled formulations vegetabalizing me at most intervals of their being played out.

More trash talk is by all means accepted here.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Whatever. You Liked Carnosaur!



No more scouting on the TubeYous for that clip of that review of Blade Runner or that recovered footage of them....apparently bitch-slapping each other, and then Protestants.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

If I Could Be Paid To DJ

That'd be the ultimate steal.

Thanks to the few who came out to hear the music tonight. I was just a passenger on this one, and hopefully on many, many more rides in the future.

By that I mean that there is simply so much amazing, groundbreaking, interesting, funky, heady, rich, truly futuristic, dazzling and sky-bound music coming our way right now that it's virtually impossible to sprint ahead of it all.


A likely result of this will thankfully be the decimation of all genre boundaries, which is great, right, like, I know, because this allows for contrasts and stuff.

I would call this kind of talk self-indulgent were I anything but a star-struck funk-rider.

Check These:

1. Chris Carter - Xing
2. Si Begg - Non-Stop-Cut-Paste
3. Lostep - Little Peaking
4. Tipper - Open the Jowles
5. DJ Icey - Under Construction (General Midi mix)
6. Chris Lake - Release
7. Justice - Waters of Nazareth
8. Mr. Oizo - Transsexual
9. No Hands - Clap Your (JHZ Mix)
10.Si Begg - Hard Like Funk
11.Phones - Sharpen the Knives
12.Chris Carter & Dopamine - Dolodub
13.Uberzone - Satisfaction (Trop mix)


This is just getting too fucking weird.

For those of of you who haven't seen it, since the article doesn't clarify this, the above was the star of Antonioni's Blow-Up.

Umm....Anybody keeping watch on Godard?

Dear Universe

Can you space out the killings of the ones you sent here to shape our collective consciousness just a little bit? Seriously? What the fuck?

Ah, well.

I can handle Jefferson and Adams dying on the same day, but not this!

Waddaya Think?

In lighter news, I went and Simpsonized myself. I was terrified, and almost clicked away, shaking, with terror sweat (and disgust rickets), upon realizing that the promotional Burger King/Red Haired Nazi-Clown-Crossover was the vector for this. It was, however, worth it, because we should all be yellow. Lord's work, embiggening the smallest man, just like the movie.

More Cromulent than Any Episode in Seven Years: The Simpsons Movie

Monday, July 30, 2007


Ingmar Bergman


Sure, Altman could always use new drinking buddies, even with the repletion already in front of him.

Addendum: I've mentioned this before, and I hope Netflix makes it available again for those still yet to experience it, but Fanny and Alexander, the long version, is everything a movie can be, and once you've seen it, a bare minimum of what every movie ought to be.

You owe it to yourselves, whether you're "serious" about films or not.

And Finally: Woody Allen's review of The Magic Lantern

Friday, July 27, 2007

Music Takes You

This here's Chris Carter's Myspace page. No. Not the X-Files guy, but the guy what soundfucks you into a stuttering break-daze.

The only reason I linked his Myspace profile will be revealed to you when you scroll down and ponder his friend list. Go on.

The Future, Folks, is Openin' Like the Ark of The Covenant: Justice, SebastiAn, Uberzone, Phones, Blim, Carter

Seriously, Marion, You'll Want to Keep Your Eyes Shut: Transsexual EP - Mr. Oizo

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Not Like Fergie

Forgot to mention this earlier this summer.

Freeland's back, but this time, he's in for it. Judging by the smattering of negative (extremely negative) reviews from some loyal Global Underground fans around those parts, this one might be a bit too weird for 'em.

I've heard people not in the negative/GU camp knock him for lookin' the ponce on the cover, and I guess I agree with them there.

I urge them, regardless, to check this one out. I got the promo for the comp this spring and it was full of some of the weirder songs in the set, and I for one, welcomed that with open arms.

We need to go the outskirts of the weird. There's nothing wrong with that. I'll take, interspersed with noise, sections of strange, rock inspired house and a slight two-step any day. And you folks can expect to hear Sharpen the Knives by Phones the next time you hear me DJ. It's nerve-rattling, noisy, shamanistic cacophony, and it pokeys just on this side of the line of going-too-far. Too much of that's not a good thing, but just a little is brilliant.

Seriously, GU people. You listen to techno. Have a sense of adventure.

That track by Sebastian you're complainin' so much about? Too many notes?

BUMP: Adam Freeland: GU Mexico City

Thanks to Freeland, and Jess: Justice

Friday, July 20, 2007

A Series of Low Concussions

Another day, another trailer. The Coens? Yeah. They're back.

I don't prefer this to actual content, but...



I'm Calm. Fuck, who am I kidding, I just watched it AGAIN.

This One's Not Very Plotty

From Ebert's new Answerman:

Re: Jodorowsky vs. Allen Klein

They finally made peace in 2004. When I interviewed Jodorowsky at Cannes in 1990, he told a bitter but hilarious story about their feud, which I'll tell again when "El Topo" becomes a Great Movie in the near future, joining Jodorowsky's "Santa Sangre" on my GM list.

Ok. I loved El Topo, but you really think gentle filmgoers should be subjected to this?

Also [elation], six, count 'em six reviews this week! [/elation].

Muzakle Discovery of the Month: Phones

Smarty Pants Thing: Sophie's World

Monday, July 16, 2007

What? Do I Have to Pay Extra?

If you would like to add this item to your queue, you must first remove an item.

Apparently, I've reached the limit as per number of films I can have in a row on Netflix. Do I need to add a kid's queue?

Ways I see it, those movies are gonna exist whether or not I've ordered 'em.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Hello, Computer.

Apologies to anyone who has left me a voice message or called me over the last few days only to subsequently wait by the phone in a puddle of your own sad. I shut down and restarted my phone this afternoon to discover nearly a dozen unplayed messages had been hidden within, with no record or indication of their previous existence.

That should explain those first few lines of admonishment here. My bad, though your message, when I finally did get it, was well worth the mixup.

And what about them erstwhile Houseys playin' the battle breaks?

Until we saw the above's show in Georgia all those years ago, we'd never imagined that you could put people to sleep in the middle of their ecstasy trips.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Pertinent, Salutary and Vewy Pretty

Words that need to be removed from commentary/criticism, right now and forever after: visceral and resonant

Word that was never a word and should be removed from English speaking mouths, followed by an addendum prescribing that further utterance yields a minimum punishment (though not to be limited to) of death by Foreskin Monster from the recent King Kong movie: ginormous

Also, as I'm on the Aronofsky Advisory Committee, everyone should see The Fountain. If nothing else, it's proof-positive that he's a painter in skiffi form.

Skiffi. As Harlan Ellison put it years ago, that's how you pronounce the neologism Sci-Fi. That's one I never hated, and in light of the overused and the never-real, it really ain't so bad is it?

Flannel Libre

I've just finished two years of Spanish, and of course, that means I'm either going to find ways to keep studying it, or lose the chance I have to ever even scratch conversational.

Either way, three credit hours away from graduation, and it's on to my scheduled September panic attack, followed by the one I have penciled in for the winter.

Way Better in the Original Gaelic: Transfomers

Parp!: Deadwood Season 3

Frente Sandinista: Phones - Sharpen the Knives

Friday, July 06, 2007

Out of the Way, Lad. This is Prime's Fight.

Baypist, I haven't given you my money (or my parents') since Armageddon.

A childhood fixation, however, is a childhood fixation, and for what it's worth, you and your DP were pretty good at pointing the camera at almost nothing and letting Digital Domain wow us with fucking wow oh my god in heaven wow indeed.

And Shia LaBeouf, I think I'll call you Pluckspaz.

So, yes, gentle readers, I liked a Michael Bay movie. We were all eight years old once, and speaking of that, there's really no way that Bay's supercharged retread (G4?) could possibly have dealt me the same eye-popping, heart-stopping, heroic badassery and Manichaeism tutorial that this right here, in my youth, dealt to me, I swear to Hasbro.

Ain't that right, Minda, and can I get a "'Til All Are One"?

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Dear, Sweet, Sinus-Pressure Inducing Thunderstorm...

Just get fuckin' already.

Yes, you're beautiful. Yes, we've missed you.

Monday, June 25, 2007

*Heart Glow* *Forest Rustle*

Jiminy Jillickers, he did an Answerman column!.

Not to mention this.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Are You in Possession of a Circulatory System?

Then you needs to put into it an Icky Thump


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Small World Pimpin'

A wee gmail chat between myself and Jef V. Johnson:

Me: Brace yourself, for Marshall Miller has moved to Baltimore.

Jef: You've got to be fucking kidding me.

And though I've heard the town is miserable to drive in, I'm going to have to make my way up there, seeing how I'll have three stops to make.

Rolling the dice to see if I'm getting drunk, in a completely unrelated boondoggle (or would be boondoggle were it actually my doing), I received an email from Entertainment claiming that my email address was used to sign up for what must've been a World of Warcraft account. Though it's possible, it bein' gmail and all, that somebody of the same name (and far more spare time) possessing the same email address, has signed on for it, I can't help but wonder if there's somebody familiar behind this.

There was a free-trial upgrade to the new Geekier and More Life-Consuming version in the mail last week, so...

In the corner of my ear, I just heard Felicity Huffman spout the phrase "he's wearing tiny acetate man-panties", and away I go.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Frank Langella's Hide Will Spake Zarathustra Thusly in My Basement...

Got your message this morning in my inbox.

Better luck next year, Plummy. We were really rootin' for you down here.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Would That I Were Paid To Write Daily Panegyrics Deux: Dead Heat in a Zeppelin Race

In all seriousness, I love Christopher Plummer. Just so there're no doubts on that one.

More importing from The Darkness today, right'cheer.

This one's a little coming-home present for Sojourner Booth, and serves to commemorate the time when she said, "Hey, you're gay, now it's ok for you to look at my rack (it was ok before)."

And then I joined with: "Hey, now that I'm gay, I can write a praise-filled piece on my blog about them boobs!"

And then, as with the Sestina, it was all over but the doin' because she held me to that promise.

Sticky Flicky: Lawrence of Arabia, The Weather Man

Who's Wave? Tip's Wave: Tip Hop - Tipper

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Contractual Obligation

It's my sworn and signed duty to show my undivided support to the proprietor of this site, Toronto's very own Christopher Plummer.

Wishes-to-be-Sir Plummer was just nominated for a Tony Award for his performance in Inherit the Wind, and, stipulated in no uncertain terms in the fine print of my polish/tune/maintenance of tympanies contract with Mr. Plummer, I must make celebratory mention of it. I earn sub-minimum wage.

The Tympani Room recently spoke with Plummer over the phone, to celebrate his nomination.

Tympani Room: So, congratulations on your nomination. Of course, we're all rooting for you downstairs.

Christopher Plummer: Thank you. Thank you. I thought playing Mike Wallace would do it, but if the Academy won't recognize me, this blasted thing will have to do.

TR: So, what do you regret more, your lack of Oscars after all of these years, your otherwise paltry award set, or the fact of your Canadian faux Knighthood? I mean, Companion of the Order of Canada just doesn't ring like 'Sir' does it?

CP: ...I'm sorry, just who the hell are you, again? Don't I pay you for something?

TR: Yes, I'm in percussion. So, you don't in fact wish you were actually British? And not some faker?

CP: Sonny, I am Great Britain. I'm the greatest Shakespearean actor of my generation!

TR: Fine, Mr. Von Trapp, but are we going to make it out of Austria tonight or what?

CP: QUIET, YOU! CONFOUNDED ROBERT WISE! The New York Times has said that I milk every inch of tension out of the dichotomy of my Atheism/Faith/Suspender straps. And I've won a slew of Emmies. If you knew the importance of your job, by the way, you would know that the Tympanist is the King of his own Province, and plies his trade on the calfskin from parabolic bowl to the mighty hemispheric! We tune slowly and own the entire orchestra--

TR: --I'm sorry, are you just reading from a Wikipedia article?

CP: End of interview. *Click*

TR: Oh. Ok, I'll just lock up for tonight. Vanity percussion rooms are a real chore to maintain. We'll have our fingers crossed for you down here!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

You're a Buns-hole


Take that, F.C.C. A few things:

The Court: “In recent times even the top leaders of our government have used variants of these expletives in a manner that no reasonable person would believe referenced sexual or excretory organs or activities.”

According to the F.C.C. Chairman, if the Commission is unable to curtail profanities as they see fit, then "Hollywood will be able to say anything they want, whenever they want.”

Yes. Yes they will.

Here's my question: Will they be allowed to smoke while doing so?

Saturday, May 26, 2007

....and Release

Pirates review right there, not on the main page, to respect those whom haven't seen it yet.

How many events are there this summer? Yes, I mean cinematically. What else is the tympani room for?

Anyway, we've had a lachrymose, emo Spidey, I haven't yet seen the zombies, and the previews before the new Pirates movie tonight reminded me that there's more big name product being peddled around in consecutive order this time than I can ever remember. I'm psyched about Ocean's 13 (and I will hear none of that guff about why I shouldn't be; Soderbergh's out Godard-ing Godard, and he's doing so right under the noses of so many critics)

Dude! They made a Simpsons movie. Sold.

Live Free or Die Hard had me at its title.

And I will grudgingly see the Transformers movie, if only because, no matter how much I hate the new designs, I heard the transform sound in the trailer, and they got me with that hard rock I haven't tasted since grade-school (who am I kidding?).

But, seriously, though, and you know me, I bloviate a serious fo-shizzle 'round these parts:
Does it seem like the more fucked up things get out there, the more Hollywood has the most absolute, mind-sifting escapism back-to-back-to-back for us in the queue?

I mean, this summer is defined by big, loud, uber-violent, utterly unlikely, and totally set-piece driven fare, more I think, than we've seen before. Not like we haven't been heading this way, but still, to get bigger has been the ultimate goal, if this is any indication. How can there be a winner, and how is it all to be sorted out for world-wide audiences?

On a technical level, the contenders are fierce. Massive. They're intimidating. They'll pummel you right into your seats and two things will be solved for you:

One: You won't be allowed to imagine any facet of the film in question for yourself. Frankly, the film's budget makes your imaginination look bankrupt anyway.

Two: It just ain't gonna matter much, all said and done. By the end, most of you kids will think that this is all a movie is. We've got you young, and we're taking you with us from here on in.

MMM: Awesome, I Fuckin' Shot That, Extras, Daguerréotypes, The Gospel According to St. Matthew

El Libro de Smarty Pantalones: The Plot Against America - Roth

Muzak: See My Charts Down Thar

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Ongoing Pussification of American Culture


Sure. Go ahead. Great idea.

Retroactively, that would make Casablanca a good hard R. Not to mention that Good Night and Good Luck would become Youth Restricted Viewing at Blockbusters in SoftandMalleable, Nebraska and TieyourShoesforYou, California.

Plus, you'll only be able to find copies of Coffee and Cigarettes off this continent and people will still start smoking early anyway, here, there and everywhere.

One last plus, Demolition Man becomes a PG-13 and is slowly reconsidered to be a prophetic masterwork.

Addendum: The quote in the linked article is attributed to that guiding light of western redemption, decency, and morality, Joe Eszterhas. He also wrote Showgirls.

And finally, I know it's an evil industry. I don't dispute that. Unfortunately, we either outlaw cigarettes entirely, or we simply, at long last, quit our nagging and our overprotective whining over it. Don't want someone you know to die from cigarettes? Me neither. But we make our own beds.


From the NYTimes this morning:

"The covers of the glossy magazines cluttering newsstands are divided between Nicolas Sarkozy, the newly elected president, and Cannes, and it is not always clear which — affairs of state or affairs of cinema — are more important." I French?

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Jerry Falwell 1934-2007

To steal (for a good cause) from Tony Kushner:

Jerry: What's it like? After?

Belize: After...?

Jerry: This misery ends?

Belize:...everyone in Balenciaga gowns with red corsages, and big dance palaces full of music and lights and racial impurity and gender confusion. And all the deities are creole, mulatto, brown as the mouths of rivers. Race, taste and history finally overcome. And you ain't there.

Jerry: And Heaven?

Belize: That was Heaven, Jerry.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Plankton Plankton Plankton

I wish things were that maniacal, but in plain fact it's just Spanish Spanish Spanish right now. In other news, I've become addicted to a rare movie site and am currently squandering my future by glueing myself to it at every turn (and this is precisely the point at which I should be studying Preterite vs. the Imperfect: the Imperfecting). This could get ugly. Oh boy. This could get very very sexyugly. Chimes at Midnight people, fer chrissakes Chimes at Midnight! Berlin Alexanderplatz!

If you need me, I'll be in the sacristy. Delicious delicious delicious.

Frumious: Great Expectations

Bander: Riget II, Rome

Snatch: The Road - McCarthy

Saturday, May 05, 2007


For all who've gone a ponderin' my online reticence since I met-cute with the sweet yonder-years of decade number three, being those few I haven't conversed with very directly or at all, well, this'll cease that particular ponder:

Mom got Granny into the hospital two weeks ago, and on Tuesday she was transferred to UT Medical Center to receive the services of a doctor who could perform a stint on an artery leading to her stomach.

The second procedure (after a failed Wednesday attempt) was performed just five and half hours ago, and was a decided success. We're in a good place now. She'll be monitored as she digests food(without pain) and gets her circulation in check, and for now it seems the hard part's over. Thanks to this, she's avoided bypass surgery, or at least made the possibility of going through that less frightening. She'll be home soon.

There's just too much lightning and nicotine, compounded with the kinetic energy of a Mynatt/Francis firing through that woman, for her to be kept down. We saw her in the ICU and she was just beaming. Wanted to dance a tarantella and cook a pot roast, concurrently or consecutively (some of this is her words).

We're all heaving relief sighs and thanking our luck (like this is new) we've got that very same DNA.

And it's summer time in the Shire. Far as I'm concerned.

Monday, April 30, 2007

Would That I Were Paid to Write Daily Panegyrics

My first thought at having turned twenty-five:

If A Prairie Home Companion were nine hours long, it would be too short.

One of the last exiting thoughts during my gig as a smoldering twenty-four year old:

Thanks and many a wow to Jef Johnson for sending me this!

That's exceedingly wicked and I miss you and your tattered sweater. Glad to see you've got a rockin' near future.

Here's to the next quarter of a century, all.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

No. No. No.

This can't be right. My oft repeated, nausea inducing love of Poland notwithstanding....Ugh. You see what you do to me, Poland? You reduce me to this, this tangled mess of bleh. Bleh. I guess I'll just have to take your awesome young people and leave you out of it.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Monday, April 23, 2007

Even Though You Liked Cop and a Half....

I wish I could be there.

*beep* You Wanna Hear that New Fatboy Song?: Bloc Party, Groove Armada
Readin': My Ass Off
Because You're Different: The Science of Sleep, Solo Con Tu Pareja, Rome, Grindhouse

Friday, April 20, 2007

I Think He Took His Wallet

And just like that, all of my undergraduate writing was done. Weird.
I swear this place'll be more than just a sporadic writin' hole. I'll get back in the game when I'm finally permitted to take my burnt-out mind back from the grasp of this collegiosity.
Also, more mojo. Much more. Stay tuned, America.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


By chance, you and I are all right. Others aren't. I wasn't going to say anything, but then I looked about and felt that there was a chain going, so here's my link to it.

I'll bet even the numb among us touched the ground to see if it was still there yesterday. Some of us lost that ground, and my thoughts are with them.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Existentialist? I Hardly Even Know H-Glarbblech *Sock Stuffed In Mouth by Overhearing Passerby*

Oof...That was not a fresh sock.

Ok, but I deserved that.

Yes, it'll be one of those.

And by that I mean a vaguely variable post to be glossed by the readership as it likes.

Things are coming to a head ever sooner than one would like, and I'm beset on all sides by those farther advanced.

Exemplum: To be emulated.

(N)ever fear.

Soon, I'll be graduated. If I have the wherewithal in me to move soon thereafter, I'll do it, but no promises on the horizon (much less concrete destinations to attach to promises unformed). Until then, I have three papers to write, and dozens more things to pen in the future.

I have good exempla, in forms both terrestrial and otherwise. And more experience (though noon auctoritee) than I'll typically admit myself to. Good Start.

Enditynge!: Great Expectations, The Wyf of Bath, The Reve, The Franklin, The Pardoner, The Physician
Pretty Good, and So Far, Meh: The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, Rome
Aural: Transmissions from the Satellite Heart
Oral: Claritin

...With His Giant, Hammy Fists

Ok, I'll admit it, I've been lazy. See, I (kinda) watched the pilot for the Haggisly retread of all things gangster.*

Then, realizing that the show was too much of a chore to actually sit through, I just left the job of evisceration entirely up to Holly (who was being employed to write up the hit either way).

See, I even had an opportunity last week to watch it live with her and co-eviscerate. Unfortunately, I've been too meh and lazy about the whole blarney-less fiasco to summon the will. She, on the other hand...

She did us all a service on that front.

And she won the war.

Bravo, on all recent counts, Devotchka.

And to all other mediocrities, be forewarned: World's gettin' smaller for you. All Hell's A Comin'

*Did they actually think they could get away with cribbing Gordon Willis's cinematography? Don't they know that you simply don't try that unless you are in fact Gordon Willis?

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Oh, To Live in London

T'would make it possible to be closer to the scene, nearer to this esteemed, old school caner

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Pull My Finger

I'm so sick and tired of hearing that Children of Men supposedly left something out. Do you need every little detail spelled out for you, critics, flaky audience members? I'm not sure it's inherently a flaw to simply emphasize certain details over others. In fact, it's part of the writer's as well as the director's job! If I could get a list of specific dystopian circumstances that the film doesn't cover which would've had some bearing on the momentum of the narrative, then I'll take those criticisms seriously.

Until then, if you want an essay on dystopia viz infertility, mapped out like a damned textbook, then go find/write one yourself. The film may have some inherent flaws, but so does Apocalypse Now.

Is perfection really what you want? Are these same harping malcontents the ones that made 300 a far more successful film? I can only speculate.

P.S. By the way, before you start, I actually quite liked 300 for what it was, but it's earned three times as much as Children of Men, is in possession of far less vision, and is riddled with many, many more inconsistencies, historical bunglings and unfortunate choices.

Semaphore: Wuthering Heights, The Franklin's Tale, The Merchant's Tale

Paraffin Station: Planet Funk

A Tasty Little Dish: The Magic Flute

Monday, March 26, 2007

Also, Before I Sleep

Caught this the other night and thought it was pretty funny. Stick with it 'til the end. It's funnier than you'd think. Just ask Holly

Why Do You Hate Freedom? Land?

Let me count the ways. Starting very, very soon.
I'll backstory this a little:
A while back, I was bedevilled into renting Freedomland by a friend of mine. I've finally acquiesced so as to receive conversation from him that deviates from the "have you seen it yet, oh god it's so terrible" territory.

This better suck.
I've never "live-blogged" an "event" before, but the kids these days seem to love it, and since I'm cranky, this will be sporadically interesting.

In light of recent Joe Roth developments, feel free to interrupt me at ANY TIME. I don't want to give this movie the impression that it's more than a movie loaf. But I pre-judge. Time to find my play button. Hush.

6:42 PM


..... seeing as how Samuel Jackson usually changes his hair pretty dramatically, that this time it's simply grown out into the shape of that hat. I'll let you know if he ever takes it off.

Also, I haven't yet seen a snake.

6:48 PM


Sheer Lunacy

6:57 PM


One edit per syllable. One edit per

6:57 PM



6:59 PM

...well...his partner just called him Big Daddy

7:02 PM



7:05 PM


You son of a bitch, I'll show you fuck me!

Did I get drunk and write a screenplay again?

7:06 PM


At Erin's house? Just sayin'



7:14 PM


Is still there.

7:18 PM


I mean, I know much of what I'm saying here is only for the benefit of myself and those who've seen it, so apologies in advance.

7:21 PM


There goes the hair.

7:39 PM


It adds racial tension, and the bulldog detective work of a veteran police detective. And then it flies to pieces with unmotivated scenes, inexplicable dialogue, and sudden conclusions which may be correct but arrive from nowhere. The film seems edited none too wisely from a longer version that made more sense.

- Roger Ebert

8:59 PM

TNT movies are getting worse. Wait. We don't get TNT

9:07 PM

Joe Roth, Ladies and germs.
I am requesting movie jump up my butt.

9:14 PM


Must be stopped. No matter the cost.

Stop hitting yourself

9:16 PM


9:20 PM


9:26 PM

Julie: I wish I had your heart

Sammy: Huh

Julie: (Claws her way into Sam Jackson's chest)

Chuck: Cover your heart, SAMMY! COVER YOUR HEART!

9:28 PM


9:33 PM

Gone, but not forgotten.

Sorry, but bad movie make me run out of funny. Makes Homer go something, something....except there's a movie called The Reaping coming soon. Once in a while, it's good to see examples of what not to do. But only once in a while.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Oh, Despotic Codswallop

Joe Roth, director of: Freedomland, Xmas with the Cranks, and others.

Julie Taymor: Julie Taymor

This could be worse than the Brazil "Love Conquers All" fiasco of '86.

I will have a review of Freedomland up fairly soon. There will be blood.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Have You Ever Lied?

Ladies and Bastards.....
You saw awhile back how Holly had artfully arranged the disarray of a series of posts at a sports board. I'm cribbing her style, and applying it to IMDB message board posters, those compulsive illiterati, those sultans of prosody. The result is below; I've left everything in its original state (i.e., original spelling, punctuation, vitriol), save for my rearrangement in an attempt at defining the average IMDB messageboard user.

Amazingly, many of them were spelling and making sense more accurately than I could've imagined. Made my job slightly harder. I may have to move on to a breaks board. We all know them fans can't spell.
Our subject for Today's Poetic Endeavour:

Ghost Rider

So, if there was an infinite amount of time before right now, would we have ever
reached this moment in time?
Norbit P/DW $63,092,521
I did think he thought 52 million popsicles.

If I promise to give you a chocolate bar after an infinite amount of time, will I
ever give you the chocolate bar?
Face/Off, Lord of War, City of Angels, Moonstruck & Raising Arizona.
dam things not on the soundtrack

and the fact i drive on those roads almost evry day
did ghost rider jump out of the screen and cock slap you
it boggles my mind how god damn retarded you are,
Vic Mackey is God, Jack Bauer is his angel of death!

bulletproof monk was a comic book? i did not know that
i loved his voice and pointing as well
there is no reason to see this film.

Have you ever lied? That makes you a liar.
they sould ahev got him to change sooner and delelops more of a battle between the
to sides
Needed at least one more scene with Peter Fonda
if only for the fact that i will never feel him inside me...

All 3 things, matter, time, and space, come into existence at the same time.
No, I don't wanna hear that because my sister's a hermaphrodite.
She has a penis.
You basically f#cked a dude.

Nicholas Cage is stronger than me now.
also girls, Just wonderin, I dont hang out alot in public,
Im actually kind of shy,
Im just wonderin if I am at all good looking.
Cute, handsome whatever.

Addendum: I have gone to the trouble of making them less coherent. It's for our benefit, perhaps. Take from this what you will, but I have to post something while I'm on vacation. Cheers

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Take Your Stupid Mask


...What do I do now? I've seen the best parts....

Monday, February 26, 2007

I Loved You When It Was Cool!

From a NYTimes article making the claim that The Departed won because the industry was trying to take back big name glory from the Indie-Scene:

It was less poignant than telling that these four men, Mr. Scorsese included, were onstage together, having become what they once assailed. They are the establishment, and they are not ready to cede the field to a moshed-up world of indies and global filmmakers.

Well, yes, at least two of those guys are truly powerful, but there's a reason for that.
But I take a bit of umbrage towards the assertion that these guys are some kind of powerful monolith standing in the way of Indie recognition. When was the last time George Lucas won a screenwriting or directing award? Heh. Coppola garnered his first awards by making The Godfather, and has virtually no power (for multiple reasons).
Spielberg and Lucas are truly powerful, but they don't award themselves.
To make movies on the level that these directors envision requires quite a bit of clout, one way or the other.

As for the indies and the internationals: There are always more bad films than good. Indie (or international) does not equal better by default. Let's not forget that.

Even if The Departed is just an excellent example of a popcorn movie (it's more than that), then we can only concede that that is very much a good thing.

A win for this one is an opportunity for better films to be made overall, in theory.

The only way these key filmmakers from the early 70s American scene gained their current prominence was by learning how to make movies that are as riveting as Scorsese's winner. Period.

Jesus, thirty seconds after Scorsese finally wins an Oscar he's labeled "The Establishment"


This makes up for last year.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

...Last Call

The Pics, Where I'm Really Carin' Much At All:

Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki for Children of Men

Animated Feature: Happy Feet (Haven't seen it, but the trailer is so cute, and Cars kinda sucked)

Art and Set Direction: Eugenio Caballero (Art Direction); Pilar Revuelta (Set Decoration)/Pan's Labyrinth

Direction: Show Me All The Blueprints. OR I'LL KILL YOU.

Documentary: Al Gore's Big Adventure

Editing: Alex Rodriguez and Alfonso Cuaron (COM)

Supporting Actress: Rinko Kikuchi (Babel)

Best Picture: The Departed

Saturday, February 24, 2007

...So That They May Not Understand One Another's Speech

I'm too taken by what I've seen to go back and quote verbatim David Mamet, but to paraphrase him: What could happen to just anybody, by chance, is the subject of gossip, not Drama.

So, after last year, and in some cases after many years before that, it's very surprising that I can say that this time around, the Academy, whether by choice or not, has chosen five films that center around events that could only occur to a very peculiar set of people under a very peculiar set of circumstances.

It's tempting to try very hard to keep from coming back to that old grindin' axe, but this is a stark contrast to what the Academy wrought for us to hold up to a standard last year.

And thank the golden-age gods, because, and perhaps precisely because, the strongest films this year were surrounded by one of the most abysmal roundups of reprobating paeans to many a rambling flea (see below this post, fer instance).

The films I've seen (save for Little Miss Sunshine) in the major category are all stories consumed with the whale and not the flea.

The two finest films of 2006 were undoubtedly Robert Altman's final kinofuck and Alfonso Cuaron's panorama of a thousand languages, but of course, in a recurring Academy tradition, they were too awesome to be nominated.

Babel is still the red-headed step-child of the Mesoamerican Triad. But it's probably the squash in this case. Would that make Pan's Labyrinth the beans? Probably. He's fatter.

I got lost in my carby metaphor.

Anyway, let not what I've just said fool you. I'm won over. The chronological hullabaloo is not a distraction this time, and the difference in depth, power and directorial mastery is unbelievable between Inarritu's latest and his overrated 21 Grams. It's a fantastic piece. If it wins, I'll be more than satisfied, perhaps even floored. A win for one of those three is a win for them all.

Any one of the five choices would be an interesting one for The Academy. Do they go for LMS in an oddball (and totally undeserved) way? Do they give it to The Departed, signalling a win for masterful entertainment over a "deeper social message"?
Do they give it to Clint Eastwood, for what would decidedly be his most unconventional film?
Do they give it to Babel, with all of its transgressions and unfriendly-to-Americans-multiple-language-sets?
Or do they give it to a biopic? They won't do that. That would be the most conventional choice for them, which is what usually wins out, but The Queen doesn't have that kind of buzz. Mirren will likely win, but the movie itself will not.

See Babel. It seems to be a parable, but it's not perfect. It is astonishing, though.

Glossed: Joseph Andrews, The Wyf of Bath's Tale

Sneak PEAK: Adam Freeland - GU Mexico City

Could There BE Anymore Casualties?: Babel, Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One

Friday, February 23, 2007


Postscript: AHAHahahahahahahahahahhAHAhAHHAHHAAHA


It's happening more and more often. Last year, I found out, long after I'd sworn off the notion of ever going to see it, that The Wicker Man was directed by Neil LaBute. This confused me. I still haven't seen it, and probably won't.

Now, it's happened again with The Astronaut Farmer. Billy Bob Thornton as a former astronaut building a rocket in his barn? The concept and the marketing scheme are in a head to head thunderdome match, the trophy of which goes to the one that ends up irking me the most. Anyway, I was all set on not seeing it until I found out it's by the Polish Brothers. What's going on?

I'm glad they've gotten high-profile work, and now that I know this is by them, I may actually have to see it. They've been derided as Coen/Lynch-come-latelies, but I think they're much more exciting than that gives them credit for. Now this...

The movie itself doesn't actually look bad to me, it's just a strikingly weird premise.
My greatest hope is that the movie features nothing but two hours of Billy Bob Thornton farming astronauts.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


From Claire's LJ:

Oh, I'd forgotten about this little meme.

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open it to page 161.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.
5. Don't search around and look for the coolest book you can find. Do what's actually next to you.

Here goes:

"This is the ritual for a leprous disease in a cloth of wool or linen, either in warp or woof, or in anything of skin, to decide whether it is clean or unclean."

Fun. and. Informative.

That IMDB dumb-cribbing is on its way. Also, at some point, a T2 sestina. Can the magic repeat itself twice?

Bustin' Elves

In case you actually missed Joan's sestina:

Being The Lord of the Rings Sestina

Nine companions set out from Rivendell,
Led by the most effeminate of Elves.
They journeyed in order to make a quick toss:
A great lake of fire, a small ring of power.
They were happy to leave and toasted with a pint;
Fucking lembas bread isn't as tasty as meat.

But there's more than one kind of delicious meat
To be found on the road from Rivendell;
And the mead goggles that come when you shotgun a pint
In the company of smoldering, pouty-lipped Elves
Can wield a strange but alluring new power;
A dwarf's not the only thing you can toss.

Not all love can be measured by pint;
It might be torn asunder in one swift toss
By a devilish beast that's the bane of the Elves.
It hungers for attention and old man meat
Just like Mr. Anderson in Rivendell
The uppity one with the eyebrows of power.

Never should have fucking left Rivendell
Could have tapped that sweet evenstar ass of the Elves
Could have shown ol' horseface just what to toss
And reveled in greasy Gondorian power.
Another op'nin, another pint;
In the sandwich of fellowship, I am the meat.

On the road to Isengard, the tower of power
If I slit a throat, would it fill a whole pint?
These Uruks smell worse than Rivendell.
I managed to drop my leaf brooch with a quick toss.
I can't carry it for you, but I can carry meat.
Give it to us raw and wriggling; you keep nasty Elves

I'd cut a bitch just to get a cold pint
Like the Magic Bullet, I can chop and toss
But I can't get my hair to stay sleek, like the Elves'.
In this deepening darkness, love is my meat.
It's like they told me in Rivendell
The smallest hobbit can contain great power.

A new power is rising, a dark lord to toss
Rivendell sends forth a fellowship of meat
Let's drink a pint to the Elves.

- Dame Livia Harlowe

....but I Can Carry Meat.

Lights fade low: Moonlit scene. Futon. Jesse Half Sleeping. fairly out of it. Phone Makes Holly Sound. Jesse Clicks Off Phone. Picks Bitch's Way Out. Figures Holly Out Drinking With Friends like On Chinese New Year. Chuck's Phone Rings. Jesse Checks Message on his Phone.


Jesse: Well, this must be important. Hey, what's happening?


Jesse: Did Chuck answer his phone?

Holly: Not happily.

So, long and short, y'all remember the Sestina from earlier. I'd meta-link it from here, but Joan, well, last week, on Facebook:

Joan: I think I'm emotionally ready now to try the LOTR sestina, and wait with bated breath for you to e-mail me my six key words.

Jesse (drunk):


And then Joan pulled off this master-stroke.

Between Holly's recent verse discovery, and mine and Joan's resurrection of a defunct poetic standby for the purposes of the geek-rehash, I'm thinking we might be on to something....

COMING SOON: IMDB Cut and Paste.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Yeah, but I Get to Drink it First...

We're more than a little with you, oh gentle Midwestern critics.
Still haven't grokked Babel, The Queen, or Clint Eastwood's big two. Thing is, and I've had some lengthy discussions of late about this, I don't think my seeing them will change my mind a whit about the unbelievable snubbing of Children of Men, save for in the technical categories, where if the Academy hadn't nominated it, they would be truly, adamently bonkers, not just merely the middlebrowers that they are.

It seems that every year the overall nominees become better and better, with glaring, sometimes unbelievably dunderheaded nominations being passed around for what I can only assume are private megamanical celebrations of unadulterated power. I would be giving them a little too much credit if I indulged that belief. This year, however, there seem to be no real terrible nominations (only a major, rather mainstream snub with COM)

In the end, I say I don't care about the Oscars, but I'm lying, because a win for Gladiator has given us plenty of movies like it where Braveheart sufficed, and I shudder to think of the pail of Crash imitaters that might surface, but that could be a knee-jerk. Would I be upset if more people made movies like Babel? Well, I haven't seen it, but probably not. There's nothing that's been nominated this year that could do any damage, not really, and I won't be upset if any of them go home with the big prize (though a win for Little Miss Sunshine might be pushing it, it's absolutely impossible to get upset for any reason over such a funny little flick)

I wholeheartedly agree that lighter fare should sometimes win. After all, Little Miss Sunshine is serious business, just like all great comedy.
In the end, it's foolish for the most part to assume you have a classic on your hands until after years pass. Name a best picture winner other than Titanic, or maybe The Lord of the Rings that you really remember or think about anymore. There are some, to be sure, but it might be harder than you think. It's your memory that decides what's great or not. When you're done with it, and a year later it still rocks you, then you might be on to something.

Addendum: So having said that, why am I not saying anything about the posthumous Altman snub? After all, A Prairie Home Companion is also lighter fair as well as serious business, and LMS can't come close to touching it. Well, here's the thing, what I said about memory and yadda yadda yadda yadda. All true, but sometimes you know. And most of the time they don't. They only begrudgingly give out accolades to any person whose entire career was devoted to giving the industry the finger.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Warmness Shortly Thereafter, Following Krunkness

To any and all who'll be rockin' into Chattanooga this weekend, bring extra blankets and pillows, for all our sakes.
Yes, yes, we've been well furnished with blankets by our respective moms as well as most recently by good friends, but more blankets will always be necessary. The nights they are a not lookin' to be quite so cold as late, but you know the ol' drafty yellow house; She doesn't retain warmth the same as others do.
So please, let me know if you've gotten this message by Thursday, or I'll have to call you and remind you.
Party party.

Endite, You Glorious Bastards!: Defoe - Moll Flanders, Richardson - Pamela, Fielding - Shamela,
The Knight's Tale, The Reeve's Tale, The Miller's Tale, The Man of Law's Tale

Go to Sleep Now: The Crane Wife - The Decemberists

Granny Just Bought Me an Annotated: Bible

Been Rockin' Out with My Brand New:

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

I'm Eating It!!

And so, Studio 60 will fall by the wayside in March. It will, according to NBC, return at a later date. They did indeed order a full season, so we can expect them to make good on the promise. After that, I'd say it's probably done and gone.

Holly, I'm with you, because the past 3 or 4 episodes haven't been half-bad, have in fact had some very nice moments, and even the weakest Sorkining is far preferable to even the strongest Haggis-punch. I'll bring the oreos, but I may in fact make actual haggis. To fling.

In all of Sorkin's preaching, he's never stooped to a Haggisly low. He's come close a coupla times (a point that, after last fall, I won't belabor), but someone with his track-record can be forgiven. Charlie Wilson's War comes out this year, far as I know. Lookin' forward to it.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Ellie Lama Zabachtani

Project Remove From Copyright is underway.....slowly.

Here's a golden oldie from the year in Brno.

The process of moving old posts from TDOTHSAOFS over to here (allowing for meta-links) is excruciating, if only because I refuse to correct any mistakes or improve anything stylistically while I'm re-editing the code.

Which inevitably means that what's fit to print will be limited (my work on the old blog was sloppier, by and large, than it is here, though I feel it got better the last two years I used it).

It's fun, at least for me, when I find a post, such as the above, that I need do nothing with and can still smile about.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Remember Remember the 31th of...., huh, that's not as catchy.

Starting at Midnight:

Here's to Guy Fawkes Hanging Day!

Because, no matter the cause, blowing up buildings is stupid, murderous, and not to be sincerely celebrated. That includes for the sake of contrariness.

If Fight Club had been released after 9/11, the ending would've been extremely different.

The ending of 1984 for Vendetta is in many ways preferable to Orwell's vision, precisely because it shows hope in the face of totalitarianism. The other side of that coin, cool as the movie is, is that it's a terribly naive vision, designed quite frankly to rebel against current moralities. I can't imagine a movie getting released right now, set somewhere in the states, that advocated blowing up buildings that harbored seats of power or influence.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and wager that we can protest without being as egregiously melodramatic and simple minded as our ideological enemies.

Why the sudden critique of V? Dunno. Been stuck in my craw since I saw it. I enjoyed it quite a bit, but in that amoral way I enjoyed A Clockwork Orange. I don't go to movies for morality's sake, mind, and the final image didn't exactly fill me with outrage. So what's bothering me about a fairly entertaining film? Call it, in those last few, Parliament bombing minutes, that feeling you get when you're confronted by an emo kid explaining how emotional emo is to you. It's that feeling.

Subtract that from the movie (and subtract a little more of its obvious catering to our liberalism, not to mention that oft repeated reduction of the purpose of books), and you've got a helluva fun one.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Bess Knows

It occurred to me, just a second ago, that I hadn't said anything at all in print about the absence, due to illness, of Roger Ebert.
His recovery has left a fairly obvious empty spot on the world of film criticism, though Turan, Kauffman, and others keep writing.

Ebert himself has been, undoubtedly, the most well-known film critic, but those who don't read film criticism might be puzzled as to why. What makes a film critic, and what makes film criticism? It's the most widely dismissed field of writing there is (next to blogging). In lieu of my own content, I thought I'd post some links to particular reviews of his that formed my attachment to him, and include some later reviews that reveal just exactly what a critic can be, at top form.

If you read none of these (shame), please, come back, and read his review of Breaking the Waves. I swear to you, he actually made me love the movie more than I already did. He wrote that review with easily as much compassion as it took to make that movie.


Milk Money

Breaking the Waves

The Exorcist

Belle De Jour


Pulp Fiction

I Spit on Your Grave


Grave of the Fireflies

48 Hours

There are many, many more, and since 1968, the man hasn't stopped writing about the movies, until now. Notice how he describes that 1973 "began and ended with cries of pain" in his review of The Exorcist, or how much loathing (and for what reasons) he has for I Spit on Your Grave.

In the case of Grave of the Fireflies, take note of how he stands up for the brilliance of a terribly traumatic film, fully committed to his observance that "No great film is depressing; only bad ones are". Also, I put up a link to his review of 48 Hours, because early on in Eddie Murphy's career, he tracked with great sensitivity the how and the why of Murphy's success. It's astute and loving. Come back to us, Roger.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

el Renacimiento

Finally saw Children of Men.

I'm in my Very Happy Place right now.

I haven't had that kind of experience in a theater in quite awhile. This is a stand-alone movie, like Brazil, or 2001.
It harkens back to the days when directors had mad visions on a huge scale and all stops were pulled. Ignore everything you've heard. Just go, ye with a pulse. You owe yourself a real experience.

Takin'the Good With The Evil: The Kingdom: Series 1

Bang Bang Shoot Shoot: The White Album

If You Didn't Care What Happened to Me: Children of Men


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Blithering Dammit

I must find more opportunities to use the word unctuous. It's a word I like, but damn it all, if there's a word I misspell to the point of having to look it up CONSTANTLY, it seems to be that one (which requires being able to spell it, so you can imagine, after I've had a few more glasses of scotch, how that goes for me).

I swear, folks, this'll be it for a few days, postingly, because I'm commissioned by the government to figure out just what's happening in Moll Flanders, and by god, I'm pretty sure that I can't get to Jane Austen fast enough. Oy.

Confusing? No. Mildly diverting.

Am I a stay-at-home middle class 17th century maid or housewife? NO.


Saturday, January 13, 2007

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Imperial Army Strong

Haters make way for steps side by side.
Riding in line to hide numbers, perchance.
We wouldn't want those Jawas to get out alive.
Riding this dewback makes me ache on the ass.
Been troopin' so long I've forgotten the taste.
The taste so sweet of wine, beer, or whiskey.

We got back to Tatooine for haggis and whiskey.
Drank so much I fell over the side.
Railings on imperial bases leave little to taste.
Course, honorable discharge from an injury perchance.
Nah, it didn't even work when Bun-Ear Lady shot me in the ass.
I can't believe we left no Jawas alive.

That gold sodden droid is in very poor taste.
I shot him several times, but he's still alive.
Some big furry screamer was around perchance.
My helmet smells like whiskey.
Plus there's this awful pain in my side.
Lord Vader has no ass.

Most troopers live fine on this side.
My parents have some money, perchance.
It's the only thing that keeps me alive.
My Mom made our planet Senator seem like such an ass.
He didn't want to seem in bad taste.
She bribed him with some Coruscantian whiskey

When I joined the Imperial Army, they called me an ass.
I told them that they lacked intergalactic taste.
They said, stay here, be on our side.
I said no matter what I'd be alive.
They've got a working death star, and you send me free whiskey.
Nothing's gonna happen, perchance

I never knew how Jawas would taste.
I'm the one who's gonna make others un-alive.
Like those screeching, annoying jawas, perchance.
Like you taught me, Mom, anything goes well with whiskey
It burns the throat on each side.
I won't even make mention of the infantry going after Leia's ass.

We come in and kick ass, for we are the storm ALIVE.
Here in the storm you will taste the knowlege of whiskey.
In the end know the side you will, PERCHANCE.

....Umm...this may or may not warrant explanation. Ok. It does. A series of events (and paranoiac, but ultimately loving worries) led me to owing Joan a Facebook Wall Sestina due 24 hours from the date it was promised. And there it is.

Reason # WAAAH?!!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Well, That's Better Than Adequate

This is the only one of these I've really read.

Friday, January 05, 2007 we owe O'Reilly a thank you?

Dust having settled, I think back over passionate debate about certain films that should've beaten Crash last year (which is to say, dead-horse-floggingly, any of them with a pulse), and I remember going for the Soggy Bottom Boys over Mission JewPossible, Harper Lee Done Wrote Herself a Book, and George Clooney vs. The O'Reilly Factor: The Movie.
I think, now, that I must've been rootin' for Brokeback in a sort of, Don't-Change-Horses-Or-Fuck-On-A-Mountain-Top in midstream kinda way. I liked that one, but not as much as I like Good Night. Capote was a great performance piece but not a great film, and Munich, as wonderful as it is, kinda loses itself in the end.

And why the hell was I going so crazy over West Wing: Season Four?
I mean, when it rocks it rocks, but...

2,1,3,4. That's my order. God. I was swooning SO hard.
Needed to go through that, as I think re-evaluating one's opinions is like, important and stuff.

Not if we're playing bridge: Good Night, and Good Luck