31 December 2005

dubious achievements of the year in public speaking

a lot of us are familiar with the notion that when you open your mouth, you should have something of value to say. but it looks like some people could use some instructions on what exactly "of value" means. here, courtesy of the fine folks at media matters, are the most outrageous quotes from 2005. second biggest surprise? george w. bush didn't make the cut. biggest surprise? bush's mother, barbara, also didn't make it, despite her completely idiotic statement that refugees from hurricane katrina were probably better off crapping in the hallways of the superdome, since they were used to living in poverty.

if something like that doesn't make the list, how bad are the quotes that did?

you've been warned. proceed with caution.

happy new year, baby

happy new year to all of the regulars and passersby here. i look forward to more of more like space in '06, since i'm enjoying the blogging experience thus far.

a very special new year's wish goes out to dave and michelle and tava, their new addition, who arrived safely this morning!

30 December 2005

the love that dare not speak its name


movie revieww::brokeback mountain

much like the world of military films (see my review of jarhead), the world of cowboy movies has always been lost on me. being a city girl through and through, looking in on a world that lacks restaurants and toilets that flush holds little appeal. on the other hand, the notion of using one of the most traditionally masculine and conservative settings- the american midwest (played with striking beauty in this film by alberta)- for a gay romance is a perversion of the natural order i simply can’t resist.

this was a film no one wanted to make. jake gyllenhall, one of the leads, was tapped for his role eight years ago, when he was sixteen, at which point he wanted nothing to do with the project. over the years and with the eventual handing off of the film to director ang lee, gyllenhall and others came around. smart move for jake, who, between this performance and his equally excellent turn in jarhead, has established himself as the first standout actor of his generation.

in fact, the only thing that equals gyllenhall’s heartbreaking performance is that of his leading man heath ledger. i’ve no familiarity with ledger, really. the only film i saw him in was mel gibson’s awful “the patriot”, which i have been endeavouring to forget about ever since. here, given more screen time and more depth than his co-star, he rises to the occasion. there isn’t one frame of the film where you doubt him, or where you become aware that he is an actor. compared to gyllenhall’s romantic idealism, he is the realist, completely in love with another man, but aware that the only life he knows how to lead require him to be dishonest.

the film follows the twenty year relationship between the two men, conducted secretly, but not invisibly, as they go through the motions of a normal life, both failing in their own ways. the story carries an emotional impact of considerable force, remarkable since lee relies on the unspoken to carry much of the action. these characters don’t talk much about what they are going through, because they are unable to understand it. they have no vocabulary for what they are feeling. time and again, they rely on physical actions, loving and violent, to say what they cannot express.

the pressure of living their lives in deceipt manifests itself in different ways. ledger struggles to be a good father when he cannot be a good husband. gyllenhall trades emasculation at the hands of his controlling father in law for the willingness of his family to look the other way. both michelle williams (ledger’s real-life girlfriend) and anne hathaway are excellent in the roles of the desperate housewives, each dealing with what they know but cannot express in their own ways.

the film’s pacing, slow and graceful, does try one’s patience (particularly if you’re in an uncomfortable seat). lee is in no rush to bring events to their conclusion. however, while it is easy to say you’d like things to move faster, i cannot think of anything that could be removed without weakening the final product. every look, every gesture, is, in fact, a much longer speech condensed into a much shorter space.

this is a restrained, beautiful movie with two exceptional performances. it’s more than worth a bit of a backache.

the secret of immortality

soleilmoon is taking preorders on "speaker of turkish", the first entirely new album by muslimgauze in almost two years. what's remarkable about this? bryn jones, the sole proprietor behind muslimgauze, has been dead almost seven years now. and he still releases more music than artists who are among the quick.

how does that work?

when he was alive, jones released more music than seemed humanly possible and he hasn't let his metabolically challenged state interfere with that release schedule very much at all.

how does that work? i struggle for weeks to get a single short story written. in that time, this guy would have three albums ready and he's DEAD.

to be fair, muslimgauze music tends to be a little repetitive (multiple versions of the same track on an album) and some of the stuff he was putting out even before his untimely demise sounded unfinished to say the least. but his good stuff- and there is a lot of it- is beautiful and haunting.

how lucky for all of us that there seems to be an inexhaustible supply.

29 December 2005

year's best couple


if i have to hear one more thing about jessica simpson and her boy band husband, or about brangelina, or any of those other celebrity couples, i'm going to have a seizure.

so here is my vote for my favourite pair this year: owen and mzee, united through tragedy, they are, unlike most celebrities, still together after a year.

if this story doesn't make you feel warm and fuzzy, you're not even human.

fumbling towards empathy


movie review::munich

you knew it was only a matter of time until movies about the middle east and the history of terrorism started cropping up in hollywood. the subject has been strangely verboten, but this year, it seems that directors are gradually stepping up to give their version of events. jarhead tackled the effects of the first iraq war on the troops who were sent there, syriana tried to give a global perspective on the flow of power and money through the middle east and now munich steps up to look at the violent fallout from a particular historical event.

steven spielberg is not a favourite of mine. other than ron howard, i find him the worst offender for routinely hawking the most overwrought and trite emotional pieces, where good and evil are too neatly defined. munich is a very different sort of a film for him, because those clear definitions are precisely what gets thrown out the window. the result, however, is still seriously flawed.

for starters, since the audience is already aware of the complications of middle eastern politics and has generally come to accept that palestinians have a claim to being heard and to some type of statehood, it is difficult to recreate the atmosphere of 1972, when support for that cause likely would have got you beaten by an angry mob. so from the beginning, empathy with the characters- israeli government and army officials, mossad agents, not exactly the people you want your daughter marrying- is something you have to work to achieve.

the actors don’t help with this. the six mossad operatives assigned to hunt and kill eleven arabs responsible for killing eleven israeli athletes are given some opportunity to show depth- questioning the validity of their assignment, talking about their faith, interacting with family- but the cast seems to be operating under the effects of some serious qualudes. ciaran hinds gets some credit for trying to liven things up, and is given the script’s few standout moments. other than that, the characters range from dull (eric bana’s blancmange mossad agent) to flat-out unlikeable (daniel craig, looking and sounding more like an ss officer than an israeli- did they really have to give the lines about jewish blood to the blond guy?).

the scene which should form the dramatic core of the movie- where bana and his arabic opposite number discuss politics over a cigarette, feels strangely hollow. it’s easy to respect spielberg for refusing to prejudice the argument, but at some point, the audience has to care about somebody, or it isn’t engaging as drama.

the final scene of the movie takes place with bana and his boss (geoffrey rush, who desperately needs to find a role worthy of his talents again) in a circular dialogue about terrorism and proof that really isn’t anything the audience won’t have heard before. the two of them pace back and forth along the brooklyn waterfront, the manhattan skyline hovering behind them. i couldn’t help noticing that every time they walked to a point where lower manhattan (the movie is set in 1973, the year that the world trade centre was completed) would be visible, one of them would turn and the camera would start to move in the opposite direction. the last frame of the film, where the credits inform us that nine of the eleven men marked for death by the israelis were eventually killed allows the shot to drift where it has been shy to go before, so the news of these deaths is printed against the two towers. it’s a directorial flourish, and a very clever one. but what does it say about the rest of the film that i spent the last five minutes of it following the camera movements rather than the dialogue?

munich is balanced and will not attempt to sway your emotions in any direction on the question of middle east politics. indeed, the movie requires no emotional investment from the viewer whatsoever. a pretty chilling reaction when you think about it.

27 December 2005

what not to do

it is illegal to eat an electoral ballot in canada.

most disturbingly, this is listed as a frequently asked question on the elections canada web site.

exactly how big a problem is hunger in this country that its citizens are clamouring to chow down on their ballots?

recovery mode

for all those of you who, like me, were contemplating suicide as a viable option to having to sit through another christmas carol (my own personal nadir this season came with the carpenters' version of "have yourself a merry little christmas"), here is a little playlist which, listened to as a collection, will get your humbug working and have you ready to face the world again.

boyd rice\ hatesville:: after having to listen to weeks of phony warmth and maudlin sentimentality, it's nice to give equal time to the opposition. here's someone who wants you to know that it's ok to want to carve up your annoying druncle and serve him for dinner.

foetus\ ramrod:: hell yeah! puts your fists in the air and sing along to the soundtrack to everyone's trapped-among-the-rednecks nightmare. wallow in your own superiority, a completely un-christmaslike thing to do.

xiu xiu\ clowne towne:: what your friends really think of you. a sugar-coated cynanide pill from one of my favourite recent discoveries.

mick harris + martyn bates\ murder ballads:: this is not a track, but a set of three albums. any one of the tracks will do just as well as any other, since they do sound a wee bit the same. once upon a time, christmas was a season to tell ghost stories as well as to exchange crap you'll be pawning off at the office secret santa next year. revive the bloodcurdling tradition...

sol invictus\ kneel to the cross:: the parts of church history pope benedict probably won't be mentioning in any of his feel-good speeches.

haus arafna\ last dream of jesus:: it does actually sound like what would be going through your head if you were nailed to something.

sleep chamber\ that's romance:: it is impossible to simultaneously hold the thoughts of christmas and sadomasochism in your mind for longer than eight seconds without suffering permanent brain damage. don't even try. crank this one up and banish the spirits of christmas past, present and future until you feel comfortable inviting them back for a little visit.

whitehouse\ my cock's on fire:: he ain't talking about burning christmas dinner, baby.

peter murphy + tom waits\ christmas sucks:: self-explanatory

repeat as necessary until you start smiling again. you are never as far away from hearing next year's christmas carol marathon as you are right now.

23 December 2005

onward and eastward

well i'm off for a few days to head back to halifax for the holidays, where i will hopefully, eventually, be able to enjoy my mother's christmas dinner.

that means no blog and no email until i'm back (i'm scared).

enjoy some down time over the holidays. in a culture completely obsessed with productivity and work, relaxing is one of the most revolutionary things you can do.

22 December 2005

worst. diet. ever.

i still can't keep anything except bread and crackers down. even that is questionable at certain times.

just to make things more frustrating, i was lucky enough to be the recipient of a few nice holiday baskets at work. (the place where i used to work wouldn't let us keep our baskets, for fear we'd be corrupted with the cans of candied peanuts and wedges of cheese.) i can't touch the stuff in them, other than the crackers, so i'm spending my work days staring at a mountain of stuff i desperately want, but that will probably kill me. gradually, i'm parceling this stuff out to coworkers, who appreciate it more than i do right now.

one thing i have never understood is why people are compelled to share their own nausea stories when they know you're sick. at the best of times, hearing about how your daughter had diarrhea for a month would qualify as too much information. at this point, it's enough to turn me off my crackers and crackers are all i have right now. sigh.

this is almost unpleasant enough to make me consider getting a flu shot. almost.

21 December 2005

yuck

nothing quite like getting the stomach flu to turn you into a big, whiny baby. it sucks to be me...

18 December 2005

love kills


movie review::king kong

peter jackson is remarkable. i’m still puzzling over how the director of trash-cult fare “meet the feebles” and “bad taste”, or the art-house staple “heavenly creatures” managed to convince a studio to give him the equivalent of the GDP of a small country to make a film version of lord of the rings, which most people would have considered an unmanageable proposition. but few would argue that he executed his vision with skill and that the money (from a business perspective) was well-invested.

so it should come as no great surprise that he was happily handed another tonne of money to go remake, king kong, the grand poobah of monster movies, released originally in 1933 and remade (badly) in 1976.

like lotr, this was a labour of love for jackson, who is, as always, deeply respectful of his source material. although the movie is double the length of the original, it incorporates all of the elements fans will remember from it. he even gives little winks to the original within his film: when low-life director jack black (an excellent performance for almost the entire film) and his assistant are desperately trying to think of a replacement for their leading lady, black suggests “fay” but is told she is unavailable because “she’s doing a picture for rko”. there are more subtle hommages as well, like the screams. other than the monster himself, fay wray’s incessant, ear-shredding screams are the thing that most people remember from the 1933 king kong. jackson plays with this a little as his characters embark to the auspiciously named skull island. there are bones and cadavers (always signs of a friendly, well adjusted population), lots of scream-inducing scenery, but our heroine (in this case the radiant naomi watts) holds off. when we finally do get to hear her scream (fay would be proud), it echoes through the eerie silence of the “abandoned” island, reverberating off until it is answered by a primeval roar, rising from somewhere deep in the jungle beyond the wall. this is the director at his most brilliant: a wordless scene with no movement somehow encompasses a world of meaning.

i was very skeptical of this film, not because i lacked confidence in jackson, but because i have, for years, detested the story. i blame bram dijkstra, probably the most astute observer of turn of the century feminine iconography, for my cynicism. the story of king kong fits easily within the world view of the time, that women were precatory and vampiric, that they were lesser creatures who attached themselves to men and drained them of the higher functions to which their greater brains would naturally draw them. kong, as the primal, natural man, is king until he comes in contact with anne, the beautiful blonde female archetype. beauty captivates him, but makes him weak and his desire for the woman leads to his eventual enslavement and death, which psychologists at the time would have argued was allegorical to the emasculation a man suffered at the hands of a woman. think i’m crazy? then explain the quote from black (jackson’s alter ego in the film), widely used in the film’s trailers: “and lo, the beast looked upon the face of beauty. and it stayed its hand from killing. and from that day, it was as one dead.” still need more convincing? look at the scene where kong and anne sit watching the sunset. the king sits contemplatively surveying his domain, while anne, miffed at no longer being the centre of his attention, tries to distract him by performing some of her vaudeville tricks, the splendour of her surroundings lost on her self-involved mind.

you can view kong as a monster movie, but this is to see only part of the story. it is very much a psychological snapshot, bound up with a fear of sexuality (especially female), a suspicion of the natural and the wild and at the same time a yearning for a return which is impossible. the monster fights, kong trashing new york and the bug scene (bring your own barf bag, i’m pretty jaded with films and i almost lost it) will catch viewer’s attention, but it is the emotional, profoundly touching and indescribably disturbing aspect of the film that will stay with you. jackson has taken a story that has some pretty ugly undertones and made something beautiful and it is that which makes both the film and its director remarkable.

16 December 2005

unclear channel


tell clear channel to get with the program and allow the campaign for america's future to use the advertising space they paid for without censorship. you can modify the form letter they provide if, like me, you live outside the US but still think wal-mart is a cancer.

while youre at it, don't forget to rent wal-mart: the high cost of low price. i've now seen it and was surprised that, even though following the swath of destruction laid by wal-mart is sort of a hobby of mine, there were still nefarious deeds that i didn't know about.

15 December 2005

ALBERT ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!


driving in toronto is the certain path to road rage at the best of times and when it snows, it's like they released the entire population of about seven lunatic asylums and gave them all cars. however, despite the snow and slow progress, i made it home fine, thanks in large part to the fact that i have albert as my intrepid silver steed. (please note, the photograph is not albert, but a reasonable facsimilie.) yeah, i anthropomorphise everything, but sometimes, you just have to form a bond with the machinery in your life.

14 December 2005

my spirits are up already


sometimes, you can justify your existence on the planet through one single act. i'm not saying that giving jerry falwell a comeuppance is the only good thing this man has done. but i'm saying that he could have been a complete waste of space for the rest of his life and he still would have been judged a worthy man by his peers.

i only wish that it had been more money involved. might have shut falwell up...

my thermostat is broken

my internal thermostat, i mean. the one that regulates my body temperature.

i normally don't write about things at work, but i'm feverish and i can't help it. i sit in an office that has a door (a useless door that doesn't open, which i'm glad i found out this week as opposed to, say, during a fire) to the outside. the door has a draught coming through it that basically turns my office into the arctic circle. so after a couple of days of cold snap, i went to complain about this.

the response was succinct. "we know, we were wondering when you'd bring that up."

really? while you were wondering about it, did it occur to anyone to take some elementary steps to fix the problem? it's a draughty door frame, it's not like it requires a team of mechanical engineers.

so i got a space heater. the space heater blew out the power for me and my entire department (taking out someone's power while they're working on a presentation that's taken them seven hours is the death blow for any office sympathy you might receive, by the way). now i have a door stop that has aspirations to being a space heater.

i've pretty much determined that i'm going to have a little home/ office improvement session and address my issues with the door, which is, after all, the source of my problems.

for the moment, i cannot get my body the right temperature. i got so overheated i practically tore my clothes off in the car (albert) and now that i'm in my always-overheated apartment, i'm shivering. i think i need to find a more temperate climate, because the older i get, the more these canadian winters bother me. i've gone all wimpy and mushy in my old age.

12 December 2005

and another thing

i've completely had it with christmas music.

every year, i try to stay out of stores until the need is dire and even then i find it difficult to cope standing in these places listening to the crap they play to try to create a mood. what mood are they going for anyway? the one that makes people show up at malls with automatic weapons?

look, i happen to think that some christmas carols are beautiful, as are many pieces of music written when the composer is high on god. that sort of mind set tends to get the creative juices flowing. similarly, i think that a lot of the pre-christian songs that have gotten sort of lumped in with the carols over time have a lot of merit.

BUT FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, STOP WITH THE CORNY HOLIDAY MUSIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

and it isn't bad enough that every year of my miserable life i've been suffocated by these smarmy songs that seem designed to bring about suicidal thoughts in even the best-adjusted people. now you get "modern" versions of them, so i get to stand in a line-up for thirty-five minutes to pay for the gift i got my mother because it was the closest thing i can find to something she might actually like, while at the same time listening to a high-energy house version of "jingle bells".

i'm glad to see that i'm i'm not the only one who feels this way.

thx to james for the link.

it's going to be one of those weeks

"like a lot of you, i hate. but i hate with style and creativity." -henry rollins

ok, i'm not exactly sure what got me under such a black cloud today, but it's reached these epic proportions. it's like anyone who comes anywhere near me becomes the enemy. be happy you're viewing this over the internet, where i can't get you.

the roots of some of this go back to september. i was on a business trip and this had required me to bring a considerable amount of baggage (the physical, not the emotional kind) in the form of samples, etc. i ended up traveling with three bags that were really heavy. my strongest memory of this trip is me, struggling to get all of these bags off the carousel and onto a cart while the two men i was traveling with stood some distance off, drank coffee and giggled at the spectacle i was creating.

yesterday, i got ot see the flip side of my situation. a woman of my acquaintance, had managed to convince the director of her department to come and pick her up in at the airport because she was too freaked out by business travel to risk taking a ten-minute cab ride on her own. apparently, this is completely acceptable behaviour in a thirty-five year old woman. i should add that this woman has a case history of freaking out and running crying to whatever man is in a position of authority and getting sympathy for it.

i wouldn't have a problem with this scenario if i could point to some tangible benefit i was getting from trying to maintain some sort of composure and independence. but the fact is, the men around me, particularly those i do or have worked with, are a lot more likely to tease me about my shoe fetish than to ask my opinion on a matter of substance. i'm still treated like a bimbo, i just don't get the perks.

this used to bother me less, back when i was younger, because when you're young, you don't expect that anyone takes you seriously as a rule (and young women always get the bimbo perks anyway). now that i'm old and gnarled and bitter, it bugs me. it bugs me a lot when i think about it, which is with increasing frequency.

if anyone's looking for me, i'll be wallowing in the vat of self-pity i've had built in my apartment.

10 December 2005

movie review::syriana


just got back from seeing george clooney’s ambitious epic syriana, the latest manifestation of my increasing fascination with the middle east, its oil and the politics of the region.

under the tag line “everything is connected”, the film weaves together the stories of a rogue cia agent (clooney), a smart but naïve securities trader (matt damon), the royal family of an unnamed arabian emirate, a young pakistani worker for a major american oil company discovering the meaning of his faith and a morally conflicted lawyer trying to investigate the merger of two oil companies and to negotiate for them. That’s a lot of plot to fit into two hours.

unfortunately, the net result of the elaborate plotting is that the movie is almost incomprehensible at times, with references that never seem to get sorted out. also, the sheer number of characters who have active roles in the movie make it pretty much impossible to get any who are well-rounded and developed. instead, there is a parade of caricatures for whom it is difficult to develop much sympathy (it’s hard enough to remember their names). There are good americans and bad americans. There are good arabs and bad arabs. there are good women, well, actually, there are no women, save lightweight amanda peet as the textbook american wife of the 21st century.

there are good elements to syriana to be sure and these may, in the end, outweigh its obvious flaws. british-sudanese actor alexander siddig (the real-life nephew of Malcolm macdowell) is impressive as the beatific prince nasir. his opposite number in the film is the appropriately malevolent chris cooper, playing an american oil executive a lot smarter than his southern drawl and cowboy act would lead you to believe. clooney himself is very decent and takes a few steps further towards cementing his position as this generation’s robert redford.

one of the most telling things about this movie is how little the arab characters are involved in the high-level machinations that control their lives. the film’s dramatic climax, when siddig comes face to face for the first time with clooney, is dramatic, because at that moment, the extent of the intrigue that has been going on around him becomes evident. however, for the most part, it is the americans who control all the action, manipulating the arabs to suit their own ends. at the moment when the viewer could level the criticism that it makes the same mistake as american films often do- making it all about the americans and not understanding the cultural others who are supposedly the subjects- syriana makes a chilling reversal in its final minutes. it can’t redeem the film entirely, but the last twenty minutes more than justify the price of admission.

06 December 2005

everybody's doing it

tv ads from a diy chain in germany feature the talents of blixa bargeld. for some reason, this one doesn't bother me as much as the dead kennedys thing (see rant below), perhaps because the ads themselves are just so weird and therefore do actually represent an aspect of the artist in question. i only wish the home depot would pick up this campaign...

jesus may love you, but the rest of us hate your guts

i would think of a flying spaghetti monster joke to go here, but this story seems a little beyond joking...

04 December 2005

on my list to santa claus


dental floss dispenser shaped like a pirhana. having this in the house would make me way more conscientious about the importance of flossing.

thanks to boing boing, again.

03 December 2005

vote-o-matic


ok, it's not designed to tell you how to vote, but the cbc web site has a pretty cool thing that lets you see how your views align with the four major parties running in the current canadian election. no big surprise, i had the most views in common with the ndp. second most was the block quebecois, but i disagreed with their policies on federal-provincial relations and parliamentary reform. (i would argue that if you disagree with the bq on those two things, it doesn't really matter what you agree with them on...)

you knew we were having an election, right? and you're going to vote, right?

02 December 2005

and on the other hand...


sometimes, there are stories you hear about bands that are just so ridiculous, you figure it's just something that the band made up to get attention, or an apocryphal story that has little basis in reality. like the one about how the members of the 80s-era experimental occult and murk collective metgumnerbone stopped recording because they were arrested for grave robbing in an attempt to procure instruments.

hey, what do you know? sometimes, truth really is stranger than fiction and sometimes, those people you read about are every bit as weird as you could imagine.

the best thing about this article? seeing metgumnerbone refered to as a "weird pop group".

i feel unclean...

fridays are often frustrating and apparently today is no exception. the only reason i’m choosing to write about this particular friday is that one of those little aggravations just got under my skin.

i had to stop at a big, faceless electronics store in order to get ink cartridges for my prima donna printer. this is irritating in itself because a) i don’t understand why the printer refuses to print in black when it’s out of yellow ink and b) going to a big faceless electronics store is kind of like being transported to the third circle of hell as far as i’m concerned. could i get some service here? please? help me???? but i digress.

i had completed my task and was standing in the neverending line-up in the hopes that eventually someone would want to take money from me when i became aware of something that wasn’t quite right. at first, i couldn’t put my finger on it, but suddenly, the atmosphere had become slightly less objectionable. then it occured to me: i was hearing decent music.

if you take a quick scan through what music i like, you’ll notice that i’m not exactly a follower of the pop charts. (i have a weakness for the noisy, the eccentric, the iconoclastic and singers with really odd voices.) so for me to hear music that i like in a big box store is pretty much unheardof.

at first, i thought it was funny, but then i realised where it was coming from. there, above my head, in glorious stereo, was the dead kennedys’ ironic anthem “california uber alles” used as the background music in an advertisement for a skateboarding video game.

you know, if i’d had to put the bands i like in order of how likely they were to turn into corporate schills, i would have put the kennedys somewhere near the bottom of the list. i guess corporate colonisation is pretty far advanced when the band who were once threatened with jail time for the distribution of harmful matter to minors is being used to hawk (tony hawk, in this case) the latest mind-numbing passtime for pre-adolescents. (ok, i will confess that the little time i’ve spent around teenagers in the last few years has made me very, very, VERY skeptical about video games. i’d probably have been less offended if the track had been used in an ad for haliburton. well, not quite, but anyway.)

i won’t claim to be pure, i work for a living and that work is in a (somewhat) corporate environment. and i don’t begrudge these guys an opportunity to make money per se, but surely if you made a name for yourself based on a pretty carefully articulated set of beliefs, it’s worse than hypocritical to just shrug those off and flog your creative output to the highest bidder once you're no longer in the spotlight.

this is a group of people i admired. hearing (at a tender age) about their infamous legal battle over the h.r. giger poster included in their “franenkchrist” album helped inspire my still unwavering belief in the power and importance of free speech. i even quoted a portion of their lyrics in a story i wrote (which will remain unpublished, because it’s not like i asked permission or anything...).

damn, i hate being disappointed.

frustrating fridays.

01 December 2005

pass the popcorn

listing of the 50 greatest independent films films ever. i don't agree 100%: i would have put dead man or mystery train on the list if i were chosing a jim jaramusch film over stranger than paradise. i always thought that sex, lies and videotape, while interesting, is overrated. ditto the passion of the christ and blair witch project.

on the other hand, i think there are also some films that really deserve to be on this kind of list, either because they've been unfairly neglected or because they are just that good.
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