Sunday, December 31, 2006

Good Riddance

I haven't been in a posting mood recently.

Samara wants less movie reviews and more man reviews. I'll try to oblige but not here.

All I wanted to say is that I am still kicking.

Goodbye 2006, you've been fun but more than a little shitty.

Hello 2007. I just know you are going to be peachy.



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Friday, December 29, 2006

The Neverending Story @ Rooftop Cinema

Neverending Story
Is there any better way than to spend an evening freezing your tits off overlooking the city watching dubiously classic cinema?

I think not.

And now you can! Melbourne's newest outdoor cinema sits atop Cookie and it is replete with deck chairs, faux grass, a bar and bitterly cold winds.

Sounds like a plan.

Steff and I went for the garlic chive dumplings but stayed for the über-germanic fantasy fest, The Neverending Story.

What memories. It still holds up reasonably well but it is interesting how much film making has changed since 1984. The flow of the editing is all very heavy handed and the plot is overly plodding where it needn't be. Important scenes, such as Atreyu's fight with G'mork, which would have been an extended set piece in today's world, are utterly perfunctory.

Still, I loved it. Sliced childhood. Yummy! (And so were the dumplings, by the way.)

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At 3:18 pm, Blogger R*Y A N said...

been seeing a few films lately, hey mikey?

love your reviews.

margaret and david, watch out.

At 7:17 pm, Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

Is there a website that has a listing or what?

Cookie's nice, but can be way too crowded.

At 12:32 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Yeah R*YAN, seeing a few films.

Keeps my mind off things.


At 12:36 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

And Monsieur Camel,

The link in the post has the programme in it.

At 10:44 pm, Blogger gazonde said...

Hey, film buff, have you checked out Popcorn on Channel 31? They're looking for one-time-only film reviewers. You get sent to a movie, come out and do a Norma Desmond moment, get a copy, they kiss you goodbye forever and the show's hosts, Dan and Julianne, do their own review in comparison to yours.

You'll get ya mug on telly, albeit at the fuzzy end of the spectrum. (I couldn't tell whether Dan – hmmm, Dan – really does have rotten teeth or Julianne really does look like crazy Sheila.)

Happy NYE. Drink a bucketful ... Bathe in it!


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Happy Feet (or, Queezy Stomach)

It is difficult to say anything bad about a dancing penguin but I am going to try.

Happy Feet is cute, loveable and filled with super sweet saccharine-coated annoyance.

It's that age old story - a baby emperor penguin can't sing for shit but he can dance like a bastard. Seeing as the penguin world is completely blank and white (and orange) he is ostracised by the Skecksis penguin leaders and has to find a way to assert his worth by saving the entire emperor penguin population from the evils of over fishing. All through the power of dance.

It all sounds very nice, and it is. There are some very important messages tucked away waiting for you to be hit over the head with. Before the end of the film you will learn that it is important to trust in yourself, that dogmatic faith is short-sighted, that humans are oblivious to the plight of nature and that penguins are good dancers.

I'm being harsh, I know. It is just that Happy Feet feels a little slapped together. It knows what buttons to press then it jumps up and down on them with two feet. The animation is fantastic and the voices are reasonable (with the exception of the mewing Nicole Kidman). It is quite funny in parts and very endearing.

Happy Feet isn't a good film but you'll walk out smiling anyway. Everyone else is seeing it, you may as well go too.

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At 10:59 am, Blogger are academics boring? said...

Happy feet was more than a sweet movie, lots of politics, messages about racism, minorities, being rejection from society (the gay case), dilemma of being yourself etc. The soundtrack was kitsch and I loved it.


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Marie Antoinette (or, Mai Oui!)

I don't think anyone was expecting substance out of Sofia Coppola's latest flick but they were sure as hell holding out for a cavalcade of style. And she delivers.

Marie Antoinette looks and sounds a treat. Just don't touch it because it will fall apart.

There seems to be a push in many films nowadays (and I am directly referencing The Queen and Catch A Fire here) to take non-bias to the absolute extreme. Marie Antoinette is just another example of a film maker trying to be so unbiased that she ends up castrating the film, leaving it voiceless and unimportant. Films need to have a voice so that the audience can agree or disagree. They need to say something or the gut never comes into play and everything begins to feel a little effete.

Grumbling aside, the film is extremely watchable. It is a worthy attempt to make one of histories most reviled figures a little more palatable. Coppola's Marie Antoinette is portrayed as a little girl who is understandably drawn into the decadence of the court at Versailles when her husband is unresponsive. It is a convenient take on the content and the new wave soundtrack helps to highlight the modern interpretation. Yet it is obvious that re-interpreting the French court through modern morays is a artistic conceit rather than founded in any historical fact.

Check it out. It is a bit of fluff masquerading as substance but it is alluring fluff.

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At 3:54 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

Having seen The Queen yesterday, I am inclined to disagree that it is entirely non-partisan, but I'll do that over on my own blog, now that I've got the 'year in review' posts out of the way...


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Sunday, December 24, 2006

Babel (or, 21 Grams Part Deux)

Guns are bad.

You don't have to see the film anymore.

If you've seen 21 Grams you'll know what to expect. Gritty depressing but ultimately hollow posturing. And plenty of it.

I've been following Iñárritu since his excellent debut, Amores Perros but since then I have come to see his films as pointless narrative sliced and spliced to appear more interesting. Babel raises this to high art. It is a pity because, structually, when it is done well, the interlocking, interweaving personal drama is one of my favourites. The key is finding the thematic balance and the integrated tone. Babel had neither.

The three stories are reasonably unrelated, with the least related of them being the most interesting. This of course doesn't bode well for the film as a whole.

I'm probably being harsh. Babel is a film I have been hanging out for and it disappointed on so many levels. The performances of Cate and Brad are less than unremarkable and their characters are not even one dimensional. The film, despite its title, has little to do with language and when it tries to deal with language directly it comes across as flippant. And it is boring.

Don't bother.

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At 1:42 pm, Blogger RC said...

i agree amorres perros is excellent, but i was not fond of this or 21 grams.


At 5:14 pm, Blogger jay said...

Shit man I was going to see this tonight, think I might give it a miss now. haha thanks for saving me $18.

At 6:27 pm, Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

I had sorta the same reaction. None of the stories have a point. None of the stories even end (they're all missing the final act). I keep wanting to say that they should have deleted the least connected story (the Tokyo strand) and given the other three a proper ending (instead of a montage over music), but... the Tokyo strand was my favourite. It was the most interesting and well-acted (Pitt, Blanchett, Barraza and especially Bernal have pretty much zero to do in the movie other than scream or sit around). It was also the best visually and aurally. Plus, that final shot over Tokyo was amazing.

I didn't hate the movie, but I wish it was so much better. At it's current state it's just a bunch of characters not doing much while bad stuff happens to them.

The Tokyo drug trip scene was amazing though. "September"!


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The Queen (or, We are quite amused)

Watching Helen Mirren as HRH Liz II is an eerie experience. She is that good. It is uncanny. And yet, the world that director Stephen Frears takes us into is so "behind doors" that we can have little understanding of how factual it really is.

And then Mirren makes it real. It is an amazing accomplishment of writing and performance that The Queen rings so true. In fact, there were very few, if any, moments during the film when I even thought to question its veracity.

Apparently the screenwriter spent a year on one of the royal estates slowly picking off the royal employees and grilling them for the facts. The result is an intimate portrait as the royals in their utter domesticity, drinking tea and squabbling. Their world, though recognisable, is run by rules from another era, and this forms the films driving conflict.

And the royals are up against some pretty stiff competition. The Blairs, in all their upper middle class glory are our grounded in reality champions of the people. Cheri spends her time ranting against the irrelevance of the royals while Tony makes excuses for them. What is our world coming to?

The Queen plays out rather like a freak show. Look at the funny royals, sonny! Yet their inability to see the world for what it is becoming makes the freak show a compelling one. Perhaps not compelling enough to carry the entire film (it does seem to peter out near the end) though that could be down the the understatedness of the films tone. Without the whistles and bells Frears resorts to some appallingly meaningful stares at the animal kingdom, and while this doesn't get the heart racing it doesn't belittle the grand performances or the film as a whole.

See it for Mirren's performance. She'll take home the little gold man for this. See it for its scathingly balanced take on an phenomenal situation. See it to see if you believe it.

Highly recommended.

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At 9:34 pm, Anonymous shamil said...

damn you Mikey, a perferctly formed review yet again, although you did fail to mention the critical appearance of Tony's stretched Jag er at the begining and at the end.

take care

At 5:18 pm, Blogger jay said...

Funny this was on my list too, maybe a better choice.
Helen Mirin is someone I trust to do a good film.

At 6:31 pm, Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

For some reason I can't picture Queen Elizabeth II being the way that she was in the movie (sarcastic) and does she really set the picnic table up?

I did like it a lot though, but... yeah... I think the character of the Queen was altered a bit to suit a film. She was a bit too spry.


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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Comments Amnesty

"Thank you for being a friend..."

UPDATE: If you read this post, MAKE SURE YOU LEAVE A COMMENT! I hope that doesn't sound too rude but that is kind of the point of the post. I love you all, but it is tough love!

UPDATED UPDATE: To comment you need to click on the link that says how many comments there are (not the envelope). It looks like this: 9 comments

I was shocked the other day to find that one of my new (but well loved) London friends has been keeping tabs on my by reading this very blog. Astounding, I know.

In all honesty, I was quite pleased - especially since that was the reason for cranking this whole contraption up in the first place (albeit from the other side of the world).

I am so grateful that I have so many wonderful friends littered across the lands. It has been a pretty tumultuous year. There have been some uppity ups and some very low downs. I don't think I am overstating when I say that it has been one of my most eventful years. At least in all the trauma I have met some amazing new friends and seen some amazing new sides to some amazing old friends.

So, I thank yous all from the bottom of my heart. Thank you all for your support and advice and hugs and laughs and everything in between. I couldn't have gotten through it all without you.

Now, it is time to reply...

Friends, lurkers, stumblers, lend me your comments.

If you come by the page in the next week I challenge you to say hello. Send a Christmas greeting, if you will. (Hell, I'm not doing cards this year.) It'd be nice to know who's out there.

If I don't know you, introduce yourself. If I do, tell me what you're up to.

Go on, you know you want to.

I'm going to be ambitious and keep bumping this post till we reach 50 comments so get cracking.

It is not hard to do. You don't have to sign up or leave a credit card number or anything like that. Just click on the comments link below and say something nice.



At 8:56 am, Blogger richardwatts said...

No Christmas cards? Gosh, how enviromentally sound of you! ;-)

At 8:59 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alright-a comment amnesty. Can't pass that up.
Xmas greetings from the land of Davina McCall and cumberland sausages. Keep up the great work on the blog. Must-read stuff.
Let me know if you fancy catching up when I'm back for what sounds like a hot, smokey christmas in melbs.

At 9:24 am, Blogger Billy said...


My name's Billy.

I stumbled onto your blog when you were nominated for a gaybloggie, and I've been reading ever since.

So yeah, Merry Christmas, and thanks for keeping me entertained during my working day. ;) Here's my blog if you're ever bored.

At 10:29 am, Blogger On Golden Ponds said...

Hey! Merry Christmas mate.

I've enjoyed your blog alot.

After 3 months of blogging and a few more that that of reading them, I find I now come back and visit a handful every day or every other day - yours is one.

And R*YAN told me at the bloggers get together that you're cute and that I have to get to Q&A for an intro..! hehe

At 11:02 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Loving your blog!
Check it most days...
The movie reviews, the love that was, the outings with mates....all good!

Merry Christmas! This is a much better idea than cards :D

At 11:11 am, Blogger skye and kate said...

Love you lots.. Merry Christmas and all that stuff. Coffee sometime?? xx

At 11:27 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Thanks y'all.

Good to hear from you. There is something about fellow bloggers that facilitates their commenting. I really will have to get myself to a bloggers meet someday soon. Now I am single, I suppose it will be easier.

Richard, what can I say. Fuck Christmas in its stupid arse. I am not in the merry making mood. I'll explain in my next post. But love to you as always. I've said it before and I'll say it again - you rock. If neither of us has met the love of our lives when we're 69 then let's make babies. (I'm sure it will be scientifically possible at that stage.)

Freestyle guy, you have my email address. More than happy to catch up and chill down with you.

Billy, nice to meet you. I suppose the heartfelt pain of not winning the bloggie is now surpassed by the pleasure of knowing the whole affair switched at least one person on.

OnGoldenPonds, cheers, that's nice to hear. About the coming back I mean. Actually, who am I kidding, it is nice to hear that someone thinks I'm cute too.

YarravillePaul, glad you like. Ditto, even though I am not such a prolific commenter at the moment.

At 11:28 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...


Coffee ALWAYS!

I'll call you right now.



At 12:46 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

From Ricky:

Namasta Mikey

Kabhi khushi, kabhi gum...Tum khushi raho!
Tehra dost
aap junglee hai...?

(I'll teach you how to use this thing one day! Words can't repay your friendship this year so I won't try to approximate even the feeblest of attempts. You know!)

At 3:49 pm, Anonymous Shaymus said...

I dont get it...which one in the pic is you???

At 3:52 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

I'm the pouty one next to Bea-hemoth Arthur.

At 6:03 pm, Anonymous Nonstopdisco said...

Merry Christmas.

What's a blog?


At 7:11 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Ah, Benny boy!

What is a blog?

I don't know but when you say its sound is warm and lush. And I have to say that your obvious jazz influences creep through at times.

In the words of those wonderful personals ads we used to read at Surrey Rd: coffee?

At 7:23 pm, Anonymous Donald said...

As a child, I was scared I might be Rose, in my twenties I imagined myself to be Blanche, now I realise, with a shrug, that all along I was Dorothy.

And one day, if I am lucky enough, I'll end up being Sophia.

My love of the Golden Girls, is deep and real. Hehehe!

Love you Mikey! Happy Festivus.

At 8:29 pm, Anonymous Paul Judd said...

Hi, my name is Paul. I never read your blog and have no intention of doing so in the future but by all accounts it is quite interesting. I have therefore decided I want to meet you in person. I have purchased a plane ticket and will arrive in Melbourne on the 1st of February. In general, do you like stalkers?

At 8:36 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Funny you mention that, stalkers, along with nymphomaniacs, are my favourite types of people. I assume you fit the bill on both scores, in which case I would love to meet you when you arrive (though I fear you will be desperately disappointed; I am much hairier in person).

Enjoy your festivities. See you in the new year, g-bag.

At 8:36 pm, Blogger James said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 8:37 pm, Blogger James said...

Hi Mike - I'm still in Paris after all these years -

Je te souhaite un joyeux noël et une bonne année....


At 8:44 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Thanks James, sorry we didn't get to catch up this time around. No doubt there will be other times...

Hope it doesn't get too cold over there.

At 8:49 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh guess i got stuck also. I'm ivan by the drop by my blog if you have the time ;p

At 9:01 pm, Anonymous steff said...

Mike - I can totally relate to the meeting amazing new friends this year and am glad we have met. Awesome blog, fun to read. Want to catch up for lunch on thursday?

Steff xx

P.S.: How about a comment on my blog ;)?

At 1:02 am, Anonymous belial said...

You surely know that we all love you...

Do I now get a candle and some barbed wire? Or isn't it that kind of amnesty?

At 6:18 am, Anonymous Don said...

Hi Mike,
Don here from over at Xmas greetings from West Sonoma County, California.

Wow, what a year! Thankfully, you've come out the other end of it with your humor and grace intact. My best to you in 2007!

At 8:44 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas Mate!

As you keep saying you know all about me :-)(because you read my blog) you would know that this year has been a huge one for me.

So I would like to say thank you for making it even easier for me for being a great blogger friend, you and Richard make going to Q&A so much fun and you both are sweet kind men. Correction you are Gay Man, my favourite kind!

If I don't see you before hand, Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year. I hope 2007 brings you what you want.

At 9:30 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Thanks, Don. Good to hear from you. I hope the move is treating you well and that you are finding the other side of the country a little more fulfilling.

And D.U.P. it sounds like you are already getting your christmas presents so all I can do is wish you the best. I may see you out this Thursday (if I feel up to it).



At 11:52 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greeting Mike,

Loving your writing. Im not long in the blogging space, well I am more cutting and pasting favourite online bits than writing my own stuff - but I am getting there. Have a great holiday :)



At 2:30 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Merry Xmas mr. pouty, and yep, your blog rocks, though I've barely read any, or blogged any, over the past few days/weeks.

Seven's advertizing Brothers and Sisters for '07. Hope they don't piss around with the series: mixing it up, missing a few, ending the run before any cliffhanger, to make us wait until the next run.

(yes, with a shortform name like Tezza, it's gayer than Cher in full make-up, whilst wearing a sparkly dress ... weeeeee)

Have a gay ol' party time. More of that hairy you mentioned, please. :P

At 6:43 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice work with the comment whoring Mike. And nice work on the blog too.

At 1:39 am, Anonymous Adrienne said...

Dude, It's really nice to see all the blog entries. Happy Holidays. Looks like a trip to Oz next year is in the books. Miss you.

At 10:23 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Hey Adrienne, hope the holidays are getting a little cheerier for you. Things always get better eventually. Can't wait to see you again.

Tezza, good to hear from you. I've been enjoying your blog for a while now. Thanks for commenting so prolifically. I'm sure one day I'll get back into the commenting swing. Never fear.

AcidJasmine and Skander. I'll swing by soon. Beware.

Neale, barb wire and candle wax. Must you ask for the same thing every year. See you tonight, no doubt.

At 8:18 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You greedy bitch! 30 comments! Nice work.

I love that it was BSG that brought us together.


At 11:26 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

30 and counting. Still pulling for 50.

I have only seen a snippet of the new season of BSG. I don't know why but my heart is not in it at the moment. Is it going well?

At 6:46 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The first 10 of Series 3 are now finished...they're on summer break until January.

It's been a demanding time for the poor petals.

At 9:22 am, Blogger Billy said...

wow, you're so almost there.

eMack - don't you hate how they cut a series off mid-season in the states??? I'm hanging out like crazy to see what happens in Heroes next...

At 6:06 pm, Anonymous steff said...

I promised to leave another comment to reach the 50 mark. Thanks for lunch today, I love hanging out with gorgeous guys in suits ;). Maybe see you tonight or when I get back the latest.


At 6:45 pm, Anonymous steff said...

And another one! Just listening to your CD now, thanks a million. Sad but beautiful and I already know the next one is going to be all happy songs.


At 10:40 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Christmas and all that jazz mate. Have a good one.

At 10:40 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Christmas and all that jazz mate. Have a good one.

At 11:40 am, Anonymous Gillerpy said...


Looking very forward to trawling through N-N Monsters land. Your prose always delights.

Five messages over five years - not a bad average!

At 2:37 pm, Blogger abnitude said...

merry christmas...another stunbler that linked to you from yaarville paul. you seem to have a good sensse of humor and i hope this helps you boost your comment count.btw..will not be leaving a mastercard number, my drivers license id number or my social security number(from usa)

At 5:06 pm, Blogger R*Y A N said...

okay, i'll be honest. it's been a while between visits but know this, i come here often for inspiration.

it's been fab meeting you and getting to know you.

and golden ponds wasn't meant to say that. he told! :P

merry xmas, mike!

At 8:52 pm, Anonymous steff said...

Me. Again. Last night was fun and dancing with you is always a pleasure. Wish I had the time to see you wearing shorts today to compare with mine...they definitely can't be as good ;).

Til the 28th,


At 9:05 pm, Blogger nash said...

Discovered you via Yarraville Paul - have a fun festive season! Cheers

At 11:26 pm, Anonymous Craig said...

I think this makes me #44.

Have a great Christmas!

At 5:32 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey there boy
love the fact that hudek's tan line is blogworthy. not sure what is required of a comment on a blog page but feel that i should get involved in this world wide web thing.

At 10:16 am, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Scotty, good to hear from you. Hope life in Sydney is still treating you well. Byron mentioned he saw you. It's been a while.

Steff. Still doing it for the team! enjoy your trip.

And anonymous, is there anything in this wide brown land more blogworthy than Sam's tanline?

At 11:44 am, Blogger LatteCoffee said...

Hola from Spain!. I´ve found your blog through my friend YarravillePaul's blog.Good read :).

This is the second year I haven´t send any Christmas cards. Instead I prefer to send them through e-mail?. Tacky? maybe, but it helps to save the forest ;).

Hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year (I´ll be in Lodon btw).

At 6:35 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i ended up on your blog in a roundabout sort of a way. merry christmas. k

At 10:27 pm, Anonymous shamil said...


The past few days and our increasingly lengthy (and sometimes sober) acquaintance have been such fun. I was gunna wait to be number 50 but I seem to be copying the Morrocan constabulary's approach to questioning suspects - cant wait, have to fire now.eek

Merry Christian festivities and have a good time in France or wherever.

Yours (hic)

The evil lord of all alcohol (shamilcohol?)

At 12:26 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And if you threw a party;
Invited everyone you knew,
You would see, the biggest gift would be from me (or more likely Shamil),
And the card attached would say...

...thank YOU for being a friend.

Yay 50!

Lotsa love,

from D
(and all of the above)

At 12:58 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Thanks for the love y'all.

You make Christmas just that little bit less shitty.

Bring on the new year.

Snaps to everyone.

At 10:47 am, Blogger Mamluke said...

Happy Christmas! here's me saying I enjoy checking up on the other side of the planet through you. :)

At 9:29 am, Blogger jason said...

happy holidays to you too...
from lovely New Orleans....
any friend of the Golden Girls is a friend of mine.
(sheesh that sounds gay)

At 10:21 am, Blogger czechOUT said...

wow...53 comments. Is that a record.

Sorry I missed the pre-Christmas rush. I was out in the Alps.


At 6:43 pm, Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

Hi! I haven't been here in a while cause my computer was broken and then Christmas happened.

It's been great discovering your blog, Mikey! Although I was a bit sad you never sent me that Almodovar collection.



At 12:35 pm, Blogger Fletcher Beaver said...

Happy New Year and here's to a great 2007

At 2:18 pm, Anonymous Andrew said...

Hey Mike! Finally I get around to doing this. It's been a busy few weeks with a period of no internet down at Anglesea, and surprisingly I didn't feel like I was missing anything, proving there is hope for me yet.

As I said many months ago in a post-Q+A text I'm glad you're back here among us Melbourne types! It's been great hanging out.

At 6:19 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

And the love just keeps on coming. Thanks everyone.

Andrew, hope you're having fun in the wilds of Victoria. Glad to hear you got a new housemate too - more money for New Year's drinks.


At 11:03 pm, Blogger Tim Norton said...

Hey Mike
I'm a friend of Richards. Been reading your blog for a fair while now, ever since you returned from England. Hopefully we'll get to meet sometime soon. Always feel weird when you read/hear so much about someone before you even meet them.

At 2:58 pm, Anonymous Liam said...

"take me back to your house, your house.." its a cute look for you
enjoy x


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I Need My Head Read

Me + ex + Q + A + Shamil/alcohol + stupid questions = trauma

Being grown up is utterly chops!


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Thursday, December 21, 2006

¡¡¡Feliz año nuevo!!!

I'm starting my new year before this one is over. I've just decided.

Things are looking up.

The job thing: Some very nice opportunities popping their heads up, including a possible inroad into a decent advertising company.

The house thing: A nice little number in Fitzroy coming available in late January. Looks promising.

The hand thing: Fuck it, I can use it.

The boy thing: Only one cure for that...

I'll keep you posted. ; )

Happy New Year!!! Let's kiss that last fucker goodbye!!!

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At 12:12 pm, Blogger Billy said...

Moving to the 'Roy?


We should have a drink some time to celebrate the awesomeness of being a 'Roy local, and bitching about the weekend blow-in carnies. Hahahaha.

Have a feliz navidad now! ;)

At 12:28 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

I'll second that - you'll make an excellent member of the Fitzroyalty, Mike!

At 10:41 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

By the way, I might be looking for more than just a reviewer come February - perhaps a News Editor will be required...


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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Bleed Me Dry

Breakups, don't we love them!

At times like this I turn to music to bleed me of all that all-consuming inner turmoil.

This time around Idlewild's American English is featuring prominently along with one of my all time favourites...

I'm not going to claim that the lyrics are particularly relevant to this specific situation but Björk's sentiments always fortify me against any lovelorn listlessness.
You think you're denying me of something
Well, I've got plenty
You're the one who's missing out
But you won't notice
Until after five years
If you live that long
You'll wake up
All loveless
I dare you
To take me on
I dare you
To show me your palms
I'm so bored of cowards
Who say what they want
Then they cant handle
Can't handle love
Of course, these songs usually give way to more optimistic numbers, like Modest Mouse's Float On or Grandaddy's Now It's On.

Things always begin to look up.

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At 5:04 pm, Blogger Billy said...

I tend to do terrible things like listening to Radiohead or Tori Amos on repeat for days on end. But (as I'm sure you're already aware) it's just a process, and we each have our own.

Buck up tiger, you're the hotness.

At 6:00 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

When it's really bad out comes the Nine Inch Nails.

At 9:19 am, Blogger Billy said...

please tell me you don't cut yourself. Self-mutilation is so not hot right now.


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Code 46 (or, Just add charisma)

Another day, another Tim Robbins film.

Why do I do it to myself?

Well, it was directed by Michael Winterbottom, one of Britain's most eclectic directors - and one of my personal favourites. Oh, and Samantha Morton has been a fave since she played one of the victims in Cracker.

So, yes, I've been keen to see Code 46, Winterbottom's take on sci-fi, for a while now. I was especially interested in how he would manage to portray the future with his trademark low budget, and he did surprisingly well. Winterbottom's effective use of language and stylistic tweaks to familiar surroundings create the near future elegantly and effortlessly - far more elegantly than the cinematic heavyweights like Lucas and Spielberg have managed in recent years with their tedious exposition and overladen special effects.

It is a beautifully simple, Spanish, French, Arabic and Chinese words are blended into the English dialogue along with newly coined terms, whose meanings gradually become understandable as the film progresses. The linguist in me loves how effective the use of language is in building the future of Code 46. The movie-goer in me loves Winterbottom's chuck-em-in-the-deep-end ethos. But - and it is a big but (and I cannot lie) - there is a serious problem with the leads.

No chemistry.

At all.

Robbins and Morton seemed to be going through the motions. It is not that the story is not compelling. The politics of love in the shallow gene pool of the future was more than interesting enough to hold my attention. Interesting but cold - which is rather unfortunate in a film about the future of love.

I've come to realise that I am becoming hypersensitive to the lack of emotional motivation in films at the moment. I forgive Winterbottom because I get the feeling that he had other priorities in bringing the film to the screen. While Code 46 is not particularly successful as a whole, it is a success on many levels. I loved the script, the ideas, the pacing, the editing. All it needed was a little soul to bind it all together.

Worth checking out. It is sci-fi on a budget and done well. Watch it in the spirit of the experiment that it is and you'll enjoy it on one level (and mourn the film that it could have been on another).

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At 10:36 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought it was a yawnfest.

p.s. you said bottom :)

At 10:40 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Tee hee


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Monday, December 18, 2006

Ho, Ho, Fucking Ho!

I have come to realise that I am a bit of an Ebeneezer Scrooge this year.

I am sure there are a number of factors and if you have been following the trains of thought here on NNM you will know exactly what I am talking about.

One I haven't mentioned though is that I have just finished reading Sam Harris' vitriolic work, The End Of Faith. the reasoning is pretty simple: you can't justify believing in something just because it is convenient or feels good to do so. Religious fundamentalists and the moderates and liberals who allow them to thrive are set to destroy our world because of their misguided faith. Now there's a cure for any religious feeling whatsoever.

Harris got me to thinking. Seeing as I don't believe in God, Yahweh, or Allah (so stone me) why should I persist in this deluded celebration of the Christian ethos. Call it whatever you want - family gathering, celebration of love, blah, blah, blah - it is still perpetuated as the birthday of S.B.L. Jesus.

Maybe it will give me a chance to debate with my religious relatives.

Actually, xmas is looking up.

The pic above has been ripped unceremoniously from Harris' site. It is a promotion of his new "pamphlet", Letter To A Christian Nation, which is just like The End Of Faith only shorter.

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At 4:33 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

I went through a four or five year period of boycotting Christmas entirely in my idealistic twenties. I didn't give presents and I gacve back those I received - or tied to - the gesture made my grandmother cry... But yeah, it's a religious, hetero and capitalistic festival - why celebrate it at all?

At 4:37 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...


It is just scary that saying that makes you sound like the Anti-Christ.

Of course that would rely on you believing a Christ that could be Anti-ed.

Isn't it strange that not following such a tradition is one of the hallmarks of a bitter twisted person. I don't feel that bitter or twisted. (Well maybe a little.)

At 7:00 pm, Anonymous Nonstopdisco said...

Christmas is Santa
Santa is Coke
And Coke, by golly, is it!

So back in the '30s when I was buzzing off my head on a drink which "relieves fatigue", hell I didn't just believe in Jesus, I was convinced I was the man himself.

Now I drink water, and Christmas is just irritating.

At 7:19 pm, Anonymous Donald said...

I think we can/should celebrate the end of another year - and just the cool fact of being alive - without necessarily calling it "Christmas".

I think the vocabulary of 'end of the year celebratory season' needs to be broadened to something better than the twee "happy holidays" of north american influence.

What do you think?

At 7:25 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

I don't think there is really any way to extricate the "holiday season" from its religious psuedo-origins.

I think they should rename it "bbq season".


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Catch A Fire (or, Is importance more important than art?)

It is rare for me to step into a film without knowing what to expect. In case you haven't guessed, I am a film junkie and I have always taken it upon myself to know what is coming out, when, and how well it has been received. Not so with Phillip Noyce's latest film Catch A Fire. Perhaps it is my ambivalence to Tim Robbins or that I haven't been in the mood for "issues" films recently, but this one just slipped under the radar.

Yesterday though, out with Steff, we decided to catch it because it was the next unseen film on the bill. Clean slate. No preconceptions. Difficult film.

It is problematic to treat Catch A Fire to a regular review because I don't think it is a great film artistically. Yes, it has a resounding social importance and, while it deals ostensibly with the workings of the ANC during the last days of South Africa's apartheid era, it is still dangerously relevant to today's global situation.

Noyce's film basically documents the development of Patrick Chamusso from committed, yet apathetic, family man to crusading "terrorist". There's the rub - Catch A Fire is a document. It doesn't set out to say anything, merely to tell a story. Inevitably the audience is able to glean meaning from that story, and this is probably how the film has won praise for is even-handedness but in removing any overt agenda, Noyce has left the film flat, unimpassioned and voiceless.

It is a pity because the performances are uniformly excellent. The problem is that they quickly hit a wall. Robbins' Anti-terrorist agent is given no growth, no arc. Yes, this is possibly a realistic portrayal of men in such situations but we never get to see how this life affects him. Similarly, Derek Luke's portrayal of Patrick is admirable but ultimately brittle and under-explored.

Catch A Fire is a film you will want to embrace but it will give you little to hold on to.

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Saturday, December 16, 2006

Eyes, Lies and Illusions @ ACMI

After such praise from Richard, and having an afternoon dangling, I visited ACMI for their latest exhibition. Eyes, Lies and Illusions promised to deliver a cavalcade of mind-bending illusions from the pre-cinematic age. And it did, but I’d seen most of it before so I left feeling less than whelmed.

It is a clever little exhibition, well curated, quirkily set out, but it is much more hands off than it needed to be. Part of the fun of these illusions it their ability to animate with the tug of a string or the flick of a finger and the countless “hands off” signs made it abundantly clear that the powers that be weren’t very amenable to that.

What does manage to shine through from behind the Perspex is the ingenuity of the human mind when it comes to creating diversions and the charming naivity of the human mind for being diverted so fully by such things.

Check it out but try to sneak in because it isn’t really worth the entry fee – you’re not living in the 18th century, you’re not going to be stunned.

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At 11:46 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

Cynic. I actually paid to get into this exhibition, which is rare for me, and I still enjoyed it, so there. *pokes out tongue and runs away giggling*

At 11:52 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

Oh, come now, you can't call me a cynic just because I didn't like the exhibition.

I agree that some of the modern pieces were a bit spesh. I particularly liked the pile of rubbish that inverted.

On the whole though, I found it far too standoffish.

Then, I was in a bad mood.


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Eragon (or, Harry Skywalker of the Narnian Rings)

Farm boy, dragon, princess, mentor, evil tyrant.

Been there, done that.

There is not new ground to cover here. In fact, at times the ground is so well worn that the sides of the furrow come up to your armpits. Eragon sitting on the hill staring at the Tatooine’s Alagaësia's setting sun; Cloaked Eragon entering Jabba’s Durza's palace; the attack of ring wraiths Ra'zacs – at times scenes seemed to be a direct and open homage to the classics of the genre.

Eragon, for all its clichés is an engaging little film. The leads are likable, the effects passable, and the narrative will easily keep the attention of kids and kids at heart. A little charmer is all it is going to be though. Like the Potter films (excepting Cuarron’s effort) and The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, Eragon suffers from being adapted from a best-selling book. Scenes seem to have been shot because they had to be and the end result is less cohesive for it.

It’s a few weeks before school holidays and if this is your bag then catch it before you have to share the cinema with a gaggle of screaming brats.

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Bewitched (or, She's no Elizabeth Montgomery)

I feel dirty.

Oedipus, hand me that spoon. I don’t want to see ever again.

Why, Sweet Baby Lord Jesus, why did they make this film?

Credit to the production team for trying to remake a tv show and treading new ground at the same time but no, No, NO!

Nicole Kidman? Eugh! But snaps for making even Naomi Watts look vapid.

Will Ferrell. I love you but it’s not that kind of movie!

Shirley McLaine. Your star power isn’t enough - you also need to act.

Michael Caine. Michael Caine.

Steve Carrell. I love you, let’s make babies.

Do not touch this film. Give it a wide berth in your dvd store. Don’t even walk down the B aisle.

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Scar Tissue

I neglected to let you all know about my trip to the hand therapist last week. It has been playing on my mind since then and not just because I was neglecting one of the prominent and more informative threads of NNM.

Apparently everything is going well. I still can't make a fist but the fingers are gaining movement steadily. If my hand continues to improve at this rate then I may be able to dodge going under the scalpel again. It was good news but unfortunately I realised how little work I had been putting into my hand. I had pretty much resigned myself to another operation.

More putty, more exercises and more massaging to work the scar tissue.

Scar tissue - forming even now and will do for another year or so. I found this immeasurably upsetting. It fucked my head up no end. In my mind, I was on the uphill trek, about to crest the hill and see the sunrise.

No. They are still pouring cement into my hand and I’m still sinking. (Okay, I was dealing with a breakup at the time as well.)

I know these are only symbols but I put a lot of stock in them. I walked out of the therapy wing realising that I hadn’t come nearly as far as I needed to, physically or emotionally. I’ve been living in a fantasy world for the past few months. It has been fantastic but ultimately illusory.

The road goes ever on…

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At 11:49 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...



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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Casino Royale (or, Blonde, James Blonde)

You've heard it all before, no doubt: Casino Royale is not your regular Bond film.

Unfortunately, that is patently untrue. Casino Royale is like every other Bond film you have seen: car chases, sexy women, big stunts and bizarrely advanced technology, which beeps and blips when it really shouldn't.

What is so different about it then? It's done well - it's well acted and it's well plotted.

They really have taken the formula and perfected it. It should come as no surprise that shedding the layers of cinematic cliché that have caked onto the franchise over the years and harking back to Flemming's original source material would provide a well needed shot in the arm (or pulse on the defibrillator, as the case may be).

Daniel Craig's Bond is craggy (sorry), obstinate, egocentric and posturing, not the suave, double entendre totting pretty boy we have come to know and love tolerate. There is a hardness in Craig that suits the role like a glove and there is a certain elegance to the gestation of the Bond of the future.

On the topic - elegance, thy name is Eva Green. She was fantastic as Vesper Lynd and she carried the whole film along with her psuedo English accent. Her chemistry with Craig was electric even if her lines (and his) were a little wooden. Their relationship will hopefully prove to be the core of what will be an extended rebirth of the franchise.

It is encouraging to see that the production team that has foisted the last few Bond atrocities on us has actually managed to deliver a somewhat more sophisticated and developed film. It gives some hope that even though Hollywood has lost its way, there are still some breadcrumbs for them to follow back to the path.


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At 9:14 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed, and escaped into this film.

But was talking to a mate who loathed it. Called it tedious and fake.

Ain't diversity of opinion great!!!

At 9:05 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

Just home from seeing it this evening - difficult for me to compare it to many other Bond films, as I don't think I've seen anything more recent than the Connery era, and that on TV. Still, I enjoyed Casino Royale, in a mindless way. Great stunts and cinematography, Daniel Craig was all buttonned-down intensity and steely blue eyes, and my god, what a body he has...


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Monday, December 11, 2006

Mercury Muddies Meredith

The Presets
I'm not really in the writing mood but I thought I'd drop this one in before I hobble of into obscurity for a few hours/days/weeks.

Meredith was hot. Dusty and hot. Hot and Dusty.

It is a pity that that is the lasting impression of the whole festival. It was a blast, and driving up with the "boys" and camping out was a great laugh, but it was too hot and too dusty.

You can see all the photos here. Note the distinct lack of nudie shots from the Meredith Gift because we, like most of the campers, decided to leave before they ran the infamous naked dash because it was too dusty and hot.

There were a few band that we braved the heat and dust for. The New Pornographers have cemented themselves as a great recorded band. They can't carry a tune outside the studio. I forgave them in London but twice bitten forever shy. The Presets were fantastic, and so much more classy than I gave them credit. See the pretty picture above. Midlake were pleasant from afar, as were Tapes 'n' Tapes. Combo La Revelacion latined things up well and got the crowd moving as they have done every year of the festival. Dallas Crane were extremely tight, played to perfection and have an awesome presence, it is just a pity I don't like their music. (Much to the disgust of those around us we decided to sleep on an abandoned couch.)

Then it was home and showers.

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I know Andrew only ever read this blogger (sic) to check what I'd written about him, and I promised I wouldn't write anything bad, even after we broke up. Well, time has come to put that into action.

Things that burn bright expire quickly, I suppose.

It is so strange, we didn't really get to say goodbye, we just went about our morning routine in the knowledge that we wouldn't see each other again. That is really hard to cope with. Sitting here now, I already miss him in a way that is hard to put my finger on. There is a little hollow in my chest. It is scary that he could burrow himself in there so quickly, especially since I was not open to it after all that had gone on.

Too much, too soon. That was half the problem but it does make it hurt a little more.

And there's an end.


At 11:59 am, Blogger richardwatts said...

I'm at work if you need to talk. *hug*

At 8:30 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Big hug from me too Mike.

Your posts told of a great adventure with Mike. Sorry to hear it is over so soon.

At 12:40 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oooh... memories.

I remember filling up those little empty spaces, and their lingering effects, with work, partying and exercise. It took me a while to just live the feelings -- like, say, my mid-thirties!

A big ol' chickenshit, really.

Hugs, too.

At 8:59 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh no!


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Thursday, December 07, 2006

The Prestige (or Where did the little birdy go?)

Sometimes a movie has everything. Stars, direction, decent plotting, art direction, and yet it falls short.

Enter The Prestige. Looks great, compelling premise, great cast. Just didn't work.

Why? No emotion. There was nothing to tie the audience to the characters. There was nobody to empathise with because all of the characters, even Michael Caine, were pretty repellent.

On many levels The Prestige edges towards overcoming this fatal flaw through its labyrinthine (yet predictable) plot and sumptuous look but ultimately, when a characters motivations are called into question, there needs to be some belief on the audience's part that these characters feel deeply, and there was not even an inkling of that.

A good film but one which is doomed to look at greatness from behind the electrified fence. So near, yet so far.

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At 8:32 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was a brief glimpse of the wonderful chest of Hugh Jackman....

At 12:46 pm, Blogger RC said...

good point, i can see where you say the emotion is low...i agree...

it is truly a great story.

--RC of


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Who's Crazy?

Sitting on the last tram to Ascot Vale after an evening of delightful repartee with Shamil and the gang, I drifted off to the dulcet tones of Julie Andrews***. Something touched my knee. I opened my eyes to find a man's between my legs, mullet and all.

"Sorry man, just cleaning up the tram."

And he was. He had a huge plastic bag full of litter that had been, well, littered over the tram during the day.

"I don't see why we should have to sit in this, everyone wants to ride in a clean tram."

True enough.

"It isn't my job but I don't mind doing it. Do you know why?"

Because you're crazy?

"Because I know when I get home I can have a joint and a beer and get shitfaced!"


He went off and continued cleaning the tram in his exuberant people-friendly manner. All I can say is that, when you think about it, who is crazier the guy cleaning up the rubbish or the people who happily sit amongst it because it is not their job to tidy up after others.

***It's not my fault. It is that fucking Gwen Stefani track with The Lonely Goatherd sample. I had to get it out of my head. I know, I know, the fact that I have it on my iPod is slightly incriminating. In my defense I put it there for this exact eventuality.

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At 12:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my defense I put it there for this exact eventuality.

Yeah, r i g h t ...

Gwen's still amongst us?


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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

A Mile In Her Shadow @ The Store Room, North Fitzroy

Is it possible to effectively illuminate the experience of a dislocated mind on stage? An upsidedown set, evocatively menacing sound design, a black scrim, erratic lighting. Yes, I suppose it is.

Does it make for illuminating theatre? In the case of A Mile In Her Shadow, no.

Promoted as an examination of the ravages of dissociative disorder in the landscape of a relationship, A Mile In Her Shadow played more like someone had choreographed the ramblings of a lunatic. That may sound insensitive. Don't get me wrong, it was a very verbose and intelligent lunatic, and a lunatic with very valid, even structured experiences. Ultimately though, the script delivered an hour long train of diseased thought, which unfortunately left little to hook any emotional response to. In a work that relies so heavily on a relationship, the lack of an emotional core leaves an intraversable chasm between the audience and the experience.

When it worked, it worked well. The few lucid patches in which we saw the relationship from without rather than within revealed a real chemistry between the actors, who were superb throughout. But these connections were few and very far between.

A Mile In Her Shadow marked the reopening of The Store Room as The Store Room Theatre Workshop, a company with a newly found focus on development. As Artistic Director Ben Harkin explains, "One of the great problems facing new work is that there is just not enough time given to creative development. The aim of SRTW is to allow that time for play. Time for imaginations to soar, to come crashing to the ground, to pick themselves up and start all over again. SRTW promises audiences an exhilarating adventure into the unknown.”

A Mile In Her Shadow is a perfect candidate for such treatment. There is an very solid work waiting to step forth. At present the play is far too tangled up in the mind to garner any emotion response, or indeed to develop any true sense of the the effect of dissociative disorder in the physical world.

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At 12:09 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But was there S.A.S?



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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

A Scanner Darkly (or, See Dick Run Mad)

My biggest question is WHY GOD WHY???

Rotoscoping is pretty and flashy and awe inspiring for about ten minutes then it simply becomes irritating and nauseating trickery.

I'm no fool. I understand that the whole freaky drug mindfuck film is probably the closest that rotoscoping is ever going to come being artistically justifiable. I was hoping... but no, it just didn't work. It is not that the process was a failure, it was more that I couldn't shake the feeling that the film would have been much more effective with crisp images and regular, run of the mill special effects. Hell, I'm not usually one to advocate for big budget CGI but I really think it would have been a more savvy choice here.

Now that my bitching is over. I'm a big fan of Dick (tee hee) and A Scanner Darkly is a solid adaptation of his most personal work. There is a good deal of mindfuckery going on around the cast of Hollywood's pre-eminent fuckups, Winona, Robert and Woody. Keanu almost-acts his way through the role of Frank/Robert/Bruce (actually I think the rotoscoping really works for him) though it isn't terribly demanding.

Given that over a decade has passed I would have thought that A Scanner Darkly would benefit from the drug-fuelled paranoia of Trainspotting but I left the film feeling that punches had been pulled and that, given the state of Dick when he wrote the novel, the film didn't enter into the headspace quite as well as well as it should have.

Recommended, if only because you'll need to make your mind up for yourself.

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At 1:07 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keanu cannot act. He can't. No examples exist of him acting. Nada. Zip. He is not an actor. No correspondence will be entered into on this point.

Also, the few seconds of rotoscoping I saw on the Movie Show was enough to make me want to vomit.

That is all.


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Spider Senses Are Tingling... but in Spanish

Almodóvar's latest hasn't even hit Australian screens yet but there are already reports filtering down from the magical land of Blog that Pedro and Agustín have settled on their next project and it looks like it is going to be more Matador than Women On The Verge....

La piel que habito is going to be very loosely based on the French novel Mygale in which a plastic surgeon exacts a terrible revenge on the men who raped his young daughter. Actually Almodóvar claims that only one scene from the book remains intact. That's pretty loose. I suppose that warrants an "inspired by" rather than a "based on".

Penelope Cruz is all but confirmed to star.

And the cogs start a turning...

A few years back Antonio Banderas was harping on about how his next project would see him reteaming with Pedro in a film titled Tarantula. The film, also starring Penelope Cruz, was to deal with a plastic surgeon who exacts a terrible revenge on the rapist of his daughter by locking him in a basement and reassigning his gender only to fall in love with her.

Hmmm, well, Almodóvar has said that La piel que habito will be "immensely tough and complicated, targeted at select audiences, the kind of film that's discomfiting and doesn't tend to win many awards." Sounds like a match to me.

This seemingly recent interview with Antonio has Shrek's pussy saying, "The last communication I had [concerning Tarantula] was through Penelope Cruz, who said, “You’re going to receive some calls from Pedro soon.” Excitement growing...

And to cement my hypothesis, I offer up that mygale is the now defunct genus of large hairy tropical spiders to which tarantulas belong.

I've been hoping that this project would see the light of day and now it seems it will. Almodóvar seems quite adamant that it is going to be very different from his previous work so I am interested to see if the gothic themes and noir source material will win out over Almodóvar's penchant for melodrama and kitsch. I sort of hope they don't but colour me intrigued.

Thanks to Solace In Cinema for the heads up.

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At 12:44 pm, Blogger richardwatts said...

Colour me intrigued as well - this sounds quite confronting, dark and delicious!

At 6:33 pm, Blogger Mike Scott said...

I choose green. Make sure your colour doesn't clash.

Did you know that well before pink, green used to be the colour most associated with the gays?

At 6:13 pm, Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

I was thinking about this movie recently. I saw Antonio on some show talking about that dancing and wrong-side-of-the-tracks movie whatever it was called and I was wondering what happened to Tarantula because it sounded so good and weird and fucked up and deliciously macabre

So... umm... yay.


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Monday, December 04, 2006

(Clique Clique) Bang Bang!

Most of the weekend was spent, as per usual, hanging with Andrew.

I say hanging but it is more like drinking and recovering. Especially when his friends are involved. Jaysus, the Irish can drink.

Saturday found us at birthday do for Sue and Eimear, with cakes and all! Everything was going gangbusters until St Jerome's closed its doors. We got the hot tip of a club to go to named Clique Clique, or something along those lines. Unfortunately, after we arrived after the arduous trek through Melbourne's laneways we were greeted with a surly bouncer, the knowledge that the club was full and a suggestion to head down the road to Bang Bang.

Bang Bang indeed. There, over the power-riffs of nu-metal from indoors, staring intently at our brightly coloured clothes, the bouncer tried to warn us. "You know what kinda scene this is? It is full of 18 and 19 year olds who have only been going out for a few months..." He could see we were about to step into deep water and we hadn't come prepared with the pre-requisite flotation devices.

Yes, there was a sea of black shirts, black eyeliner and black approximations of "punk", "emo" and nu-metal. (The bouncer in the lemon-yellow Tegan and Sarah top seemed to revel in the incongruity of her apparel.)

Thankfully, vodka and Red Bull proves to be a remarkably virulent tonic.

And the night turned out swimmingly. Upstairs had some more recognisable tunes and downstairs was a dancey dance floor where The Presets got a revolution or two.

It wasn't all beer, vodka, Red Bull and skittles though. I did get clocked by some projectile from some unknown origin. I am sure someone got a laugh out of my bewildered look. By the end of the night the tiled floor, covered in alcohol, had the surface friction of an ice rink. I managed to slip over and sprain my wrist. Some lovely punter reached out his black sleeved hand to pull me up and I stumbled off in search of my dignity.

There was a photo competition going on between Andrew and Sue so everything is documented. I'm sure you'll get to see them soon.

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Overheard in the GB toilets (01/12/06)

I love mah jong.

I am good at it.

I used to be addicted to it.

Hmmm, I can't say I was expecting to hear that when I walked into the toilets. Don't mobile phones make life just that little bit more intriguing. (I prefer to think he was on a mobile phone; sitting in the cubicle talking to oneself about mah jong would be downright creepy.)


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