34 minutes ago
Friday, November 28
Wednesday, November 26
Have been lazy about the blog recently so just a quick film post here.
Having read the interview with Mickey Rourke in the weekend's Observer, it seems that Darren Aronofsky's new film The Wrestler is set to be the catalyst for one of the biggest Oscar wins of all time.
Rourke is a man who has really been through alot of shit, most of it his own doing, and it seems that before his comeback run of the last few years, he has been a poverty-stricken loser who thought it was all over for him.
The interview reveals a sensitive man, once touted as a future Brando, who has battled with himself for a long time and is being given one last chance.
His is an intriguing story and I'm hoping The Wrestler lives up to the hype that is starting to build around it.
In other film news, I meant to post about Body Of Lies a while ago after I had watched it. It's a pile of bollocks and again the standard for anti-CIA, cerebral political film-making has been set by the wonderful Syriana. It will be hard to top that, especially if Hollywood's default actor for an Arab-speaking, covert agent in the Middle East is Leonardo di Caprio. I actually think he is a great actor but only in certain roles and in Body Of Lies he has neither the gravitas nor beard-growing abilities to make it all work.
Next on my to-see list is Waltz With Bashir , an animated documentary of sorts by Ari Folman, which deals with the horrors of war in a way not previously seen. Looks like an intense experience.
Anyone catch the Kurt Cobain doc recently there, About a Son? Audio clips of journo Michael Azzerad talking candidly with Kurt while the hack was researching his book at the time. The audio is complemented with stills from the areas Cobain grew up in and used to hang around. A really moving song at the end (Mark Lanegan doing Museum) had me in silence for a good 10 minutes after the credits had rolled. Also on recently was The Thrilla In Manila, the documentary about Ali and Joe Frazier's relationship from friends to foes. The doc reveals some genuinely uncomfortable stuff about Ali, who is so revered amongst sportsfans, and shows him as a nasty, racist man who mouthed off a little too easily on things about which he should have known better. Easily as good as When We Were Kings. Quality stuff.
Anyway coming soon. My ten best films of the year (because everyone else is going to do albums).
Spoiler warning: said list may feature There Will Be Blood. Feel free to suggest your own faves of the year too.
Tuesday, November 11
Sorry to get all serious here on There Will Be Blog but 20 million people (yes, 20 fucking million) died in the First World War and today is the 90th anniversary of its end.
BBC4 recently screened a great documentary - presented by Jeremy Paxman - on Wilfred Owen, a soldier whose anti-war poetry only became really well-known in the 60s and who was befriended and mentored by his poetry peer, Siegfried Sassoon, when they were in Craiglockhart War Hospital in 1917.
These are two poets that I do remember well from school and Anthem For Doomed Youth, one of his most famous poems, was also one of my favourites.
Owen was killed in action in November 1918 at the age of 25, only a week before the end of the war and his mother was told of his death a week later as celebrations rang out on the streets.
Pretty fucked up that the world really learned nowt from the horror stories of WWI and in 2008, war still rages on.
Here's Anthem For Doomed Youth just to get you in a cheery mood for the day.
What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs, –
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.
Strange that war is fought over either land ownership or religion, neither of which I care about that much - I rent and am an atheist.
Monday, November 10
It's strange to watch David Cameron speaking on television; be it at a Conservative Party conference or meeting, during a soundbite to criticise Labour, an appearance on a BBC political discussion show or whatever.
I get the impression that he walks in the door of his pristine Conservative home, props his bike up against the white radiator, removes his cycling helmet, unplugs his iPod headphones with the din of James Blunt just faintly audible..'you're beautifulllll it'sss truuuue'... , strolls nonchalantly into his kitchen, kisses his wife on the cheek, hugs his rosy-cheeked children, traipses through the basement door and descends the stairs, pulls on his white labcoat, slaps awake the young immigrant he has tethered to the large wooden pole in the middle of the floor and plants a shiny axe right in the middle of young Ahmed's head while listening to Huey Lewis and the News, simultaneously telling the rest of Ahmed's family in the basement corner that he doesn't care what they say or how much they cry, he's enjoying himself and won't be finishing up any time soon.
There's just something not quite right about him is there?
Then again, that's nothing when compared to Easter Island-faced Gordon Brown.
He actually comes across like that alien-in-a-human-body from Men In Black; as awkward as a teenage boy in tracksuit bottoms watching a Flake ad.