two hundred one

Shutter Island, Scorsese’s latest film, is dreadful. He, Scorsese, excels at gritty real, albeit historically inaccurate, stories. He makes those worlds come to life very well, with the unrelenting underworld of america seething through every pore. Shutter Island, though called for a director with more flair, more style. It’s about the real unravelling, and it was the first film of his career where he worked outside his comfort zone, that being outside gangsters and degenerates. He gets the real down here, but he doesn’t know how to twist it, how to bend reality to make the viewer appreciate the journey. Rather, he relies on shitty CGI effects, which could’ve easily been done in camera. I mean, why not make a storm rather than digitise one? Why now dump all those papers into the air, rather than digitise? Same with the ash, maybe the most potentially powerful scene in the film. He ruined it through laziness. It made him seem an old man fascinated with technology, but hopeless in utilising this fantastic thing before him.

It’s done hackfully and it all falls apart. The only things done right in the film were the casting, which is phenomenal, and then he used this song.

Don’t see this movie.

Do see this one.

one hundred ninety eight

Finally getting up and sorting my teaching abroad business. Hopefully, in a month and a half, i’ll be on a plane across the world to see what will meet me on the otherside, in the land of the rising sun, or nearby.

Anyrate, i think i’m in love with Anna Karina, but how could you not be, yeah?

She’s probably dead now, though.

one hundred ninety six

Yesterday, around sevenish, i picked up Ledfeather by Stephen Graham Jones and turned to a random page and read a few, just because sometimes that’s what you need, a refresher, a taste, a reminiscence of what it was to live in that world. I put it back down, went to Dewey’s show, then got back around midnight thirty. Watched some television, and then, at about two thirty, i picked up Ledfeather again and opened to that page before it starts where all it says is

I remember you

and i was hooked all over again, for the third time, never the last time, and the next thing i knew, the sun was rising and my heart was breaking, but in a good way, the way that resurrects you, that shows you everything you forgot to pay attention to, forgot to remember, and i closed it because it was done, again, finished for the third time, and i could’ve turned back to page one and began again, which is how the first two readings happened, in consecutive days, because this book burns you, burrows deep, and smolders, lives, reconnects cells, and balances chemistry. If i had had this book when i was sixteen, i wonder if things would’ve been different. I wonder if this could’ve saved me the way Crime and Punishment brought me a sort of salvation, though it had to first consume and destroy me. This book, though, Ledfeather, it will save a life, it will change a life, and it will whisper to you across a century, through the forgotten dreams and lives, and the face of Doby Saxon will forever cling to the retinas, his face whited out by headlights, his hand reaching through the windshield, and you’ll fall apart with his his story, history.

one hundred ninety four

Fitzcarraldo by Wernor Herzog is absolutely brilliant. Conquistador of the Useless, maybe, but fantastic all the way through. Herzog is a roguish filmmaker and, for that, we love him. I was going to write a full review, but i feel tired and lazy. Up since seven and work from 9-5. I feel like a civilian.

one hundred ninety three

There was another piece in the Times today about yet another 20 percent drop in CD sales. (Are they running the same news piece every 4 months?) Jeez guys, the writing’s on the wall. How long do the record execs think they’ll have those offices and nice parking spaces? (Well, more than half of all record A&R and other execs are gone already, so there should be plenty of parking space). They, the big 4 or 5, should give the catalogues back to the artists or their heirs as a gesture before they close the office doors, as they sure don’t know how to sell music anymore. (I have Talking Heads stuff on the shelf that I can’t get Warner to release.) The “industry” had a nice 50-year ride, but it’s time to move on. Luckily, music remains more or less unaffected — there is a lot of great music out there. A new model will emerge that includes rather than sues its own customers, that realizes that music is not a product in the sense of being a thing — it’s closer to fashion, in that for music fans it tells them and their friends who they are, what they feel passionately about and to some extent what makes life fun and interesting. It’s about a sense of community — a song ties a whole invisible disparate community together. It’s not about selling the (often) shattered plastic case CDs used to come in.

–David Byrne