faustus: (cinema)
( Feb. 13th, 2011 08:01 pm)
This isn't the first film - but I've not written the others up yet.

1 Casablanca (Michael Curtiz, 1942) )
faustus: (cinema)
( Jan. 30th, 2011 11:54 pm)
I suspect there has been something missing here, but I have been watching a lot of tv and things have been melding into one another...

So, especially because I know what is coming up in 2011 (having been there when I watched them), do we finish 2010 on a high?

CXX: The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Jim Sharman, 1975)

Richard O'Brien's gender bending musical - with Hammer horror sets, now watchable with the opening in black and white - as interesting for its cast as anything else.

CXXI: The Abominable Dr. Phibes (Robert Fuest, 1971)
CXXII: The Incredible Melting Man (William Sachs, 1977)
CXXIII: Blackenstein (William A. Levey, 1973)
CXXIV: The Island of Dr. Moreau (Don Taylor, 1977)

So what is the finish the year on a high film? )
faustus: (cinema)
( Jul. 18th, 2010 09:53 pm)
Catch up, no doubt missing stuff:

LX: Slutty Summer (Casper Andrea, 2005) - dull gay indie
LXI: Shock to the System (Ron Oliver, 2006) - enjoyable crime TVM
LXII: 3-Day Weekend (Rob Williams, 2008) - away for the weekend in ski lodge comedy
LXIII: Mr Brooks (Bruce A. Evans, 2007) - Kevin Costner is highly recommended movie shock - as is Demi Moore. Go rent. Now.
LXIV: It's Alive (Larry Cohen, 1974) - baby horror
LXV: It Lives Again (Larry Cohen, 1978) - son of baby horror
LXVI: It's A Wonderful Afterlife (Gurinda Chada, 2010) - Ealing style comedy with Asian twist, the funniest bit being a pointless Carrie homage
LXVII: Four Lions (Chris Morris, 2010) - Ealing style comedy with Jihad twist, go see - although London looks rather like Sheffield
LXVIII: Kung Fu Hustle (Stephen Chow, 2004) - the sort of film Tarantino tries but fails to make - barking but brilliant
LXIX: The Kid Stays in the Picture (Nanette Burstein and Brett Morgen, 2002) - talking book, with pictures; Robert Evans's autobiography
LXX: Herbie Goes To Monte Carlo (Vincent McEveety, 1977) - VW falls in love and evades evil diamond thieves
LXXI: Herbie Rides Again (Robert Stevenson, 1974) - VW evades evil property development corporation
LXXII: Herbie Goes Bananas (Vincent McEveety, 1980) - VW evades evil archeologists

Totals: 72 (Cinema: 18; DVD: 43; TV: 11)
faustus: (Comedy)
( May. 21st, 2010 11:59 pm)
A day off, although I did have a couple of hours reading Shikasta. Odd, and a little round the houses. I wonder who coined "space fiction" and when. Shall look up. The post brought Aurora: Beyond Equality, and Star-Anchored, Star-Angered arrived on Tuesday. US and Canadian posting is slow, although Aurora was last thing ordered.

I nearly talked myself out of going to see Kick-Ass; good job I didn't, too, as whatever you think about Jonathan Ross (and I think a move out of the mainstream would be to the good), his missus is a sharp talent. I am wearing a broad grin, and caught the bus with a couple of mins to spare, after a long wait to get up there.

Meanwhile, I spoke three little words to someone, and got the response: )

More to come.

And thus home, and the realisation that I can't go to Chichester for a day because I'm seeing a stand up Saturday night. Will have to think about staying over night (and thus it doesn't have to be a Saturday). Shall discuss this with Tilda.
faustus: (cinema)
( Apr. 2nd, 2010 12:52 pm)
XXIX: Meteor (Ronald Neame, 1979) )

XXX: Gumshoe (Stephen Frears, 1971) )

XXXI: 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963) )

XXXII: The Anderson Tapes (Sidney Lumet, 1971) )

XXXIII: Superman (Richard Donner, 1978) )

XXXIV: Flash Gordon (Mike Hodges, 1980) )

I'm holding back on A Single Man, because it needs a spoilery rave and rant.

I've been looking for the following for ages - there's a Wise director's cut, but I wanted the original release, the Star Trek trilogy box was films 2-4 and there was stupidly expensive boxset of the ten. Star Trek movies don't show up in CEX. But finally I found a cheaper complete films boxset on Amazon, and so I've got all the films should I wish to watch/rewatch them.

XXXV: Star Trek: The Slow Motion Picture (Robert Wise, 1979) )

Totals: 35 (Cinema: 8; DVDs: 19; TV: 8)
faustus: (cinema)
( Jan. 1st, 2010 11:59 pm)
I-X )











faustus: (Culture)
( Jan. 1st, 2010 09:00 pm)
I am torn about New Year Resolutions, if only because I'm bad at carrying them out - and it feels like setting yourself up for the fail. My experience at work of life being increasingly determined by Intended Learning Outcomes and so forth mean that there is more focus on the one thing that you did not do rather than the nine hundred and ninety nine that you did. Why is your glass only half full?

I failed at completing the top hundred films, the Hitchcocks and the Colin Dexters, but I saw a lot of other films and read a number of books, and wrote a lot - see this:

Cut for sheer bloody exhaustedness )

I've had a To Do List to get me through December, and I think I did pretty well: )

So for 2010, my resolutions? Well, what am I committed to?

  1. Probably another chapter on The Man Who Fell to Earth
  2. A section for another guide to sf
  3. An article on steampunk
  4. A chapter based on the proposal
  5. A 100,000 word book on seventies sf.

On that latter, I want to watch 100 films, read 300 books, and watch about three hundred episodes of television.

See what I mean about the fail? It's the fine for films, but it's three or four times as many books as I've read last year. Think of it as one a day until November.

On the other hand, a rolling to do list would have to include all the Hugo and Nebula novel winners of the 1970s, namely:

  1. Larry Niven, Ringworld
  2. Robert Silverberg, A Time of Changes
  3. Philip José Farmer, To Your Scattered Bodies Go
  4. Isaac Asimov, The Gods Themselves
  5. Arthur C. Clarke, Rendezvous with Rama
  6. Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed
  7. Joe Haldeman, The Forever War
  8. Frederik Pohl, Man Plus
  9. Kate Wilhelm, Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang
  10. Frederik Pohl, Gateway
  11. Vonda McIntyre, Dreamsnake
  12. Arthur C. Clarke, The Fountains of Paradise
  13. Gregory Benford, Timescape
  14. Joan D. Vinge, The Snow Queen

The number ticked off mean I can probably add shortlists too (but what is it with the Nebulae in 1975?).

In other aspects of life - less pub follows, and I want to do more food preparation and preparation, so I have things to defrost rather than too much reliance on prepared food. No more crisps; tips on low fat savoury snacks for lunches welcome (there must be oaty stuff). More fruit.

I want to get to Nottingham, Chichester and Alfriston, in part for exhibitions, and maybe to Brighton. It's about time I went back to Hastings, and maybe a second visit to Lewis or Eastbourne.

I am going to see this comedy

I need to get a rhythm.

Over the last year I managed to redress the work and leisure balance - by going to the movies, by seeing comedy, by going to the pub. What I also need to do is doing nowt time - to catch my breath.

So, there's the plan, and as far as it is a resolution, bring on the fail...
faustus: (cinema)
( Dec. 21st, 2009 12:13 am)
And this is impossible to discuss without giving away plot points.

CXVI: Avatar (James Cameron, 2009) )

Totals: 116 - [Cinema: 36; DVD: 70; Television: 10]
faustus: (Default)
( Dec. 16th, 2009 02:47 pm)
Brief comments to catch up:

CII: The Parallax View (Alan J. Pakula, 1974)
1970s conspiracy thriller built around an assassination, and who saw what. Warren Beatty in the man watching his back.

CIII: Jennifer's Body (Karyn Kusama, 2009)
There's a great movie to be built around the tagline "She's evil, not high school evil", but this isn't it. Despite the Juno pedigree, this lacks the sharpness of that script, and just doesn't play enough with the conventions - nor make much sense.

CIV: C'era una volta il West (Once Upon A Time in the West, Sergio Leone, 1968
This doesn't quite have the sweep of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, and lacks Clint, but still a gripping, thrilling, amusing, western full of dialogue you'll be wanting to quote for days. A harmonica player and a desperado join forces to help a widow who is bullied by the buiders of the railroad. Tarantino should watch and note how to do it properly.

CV: The Card Player (Dario Argento, 2003)
From Argento as scriptwriter to Argento as director, scriptwriter and father of one of the cast. A giallo, perhaps, but in any case a horror thriller cast in the mode of Hostel and the Saw series (which it predates. A cop is forced to play online poker to save kidnapped blondes. Predictably total bollocks but fun.

CVI: The Outlaw Josey Wales (Clint Eastwood, 1976)
Eastwood clearly paid attention whilst doing the man with no name - not exactly a revisionist western, but a spin on The Searchers which shows more respect for native Americans than the white settlers. I really need to bone up on American Civil War iconography to follow the ins and outs of westerns.

CVII: Lenny (Bob Fosse, 1974)
Biopic of the Russell Brand of his day, one of those comedians who made Bill Hicks and Richard Pryor possible: Lenny Bruce, here played by Dustin Hoffman. The narrative leaps around, and aspires to documentary, but I'd say the ending was botched. In glorious black and white.

CVIII: Im Lauf der Zeit (Kings of the Road, Wim Wenders, 1976)
Wenders is one of those directors, like Greenaway, who was very big in the 1980s but has vanished from mind. I appear to be working through the boxset given what else I have on the to watch pile, and this is no bad thing. This is a road movie, in glorious black and white, and at times looks like a western - albeit one shot on the borders of East Germany. The plot, such as it is, concerns the travels of a cinema engineer and an estranged husband. It's an 18, which is a little harsh, but it does include male nudity, a major character taking a dump and a cameo masturbating. Probably ninety minutes too long, but indulge it.

CIX: Celia (Anne Turner, 1989)
Rewatch of a film both charming and disturbing - the story of nine year old Celia in Australia in the era of the red scare and the rabbit epidemic. Like Heavenly Creatures (Peter Jackson - what happened to him?), this takes us into a child's psyche. It was mismarketed as horror, but it is certainly disturbing.

CX: Red Eye (Wes Craven, 2005)
Effective but frankly barking thriller that is not exactly typical of the director's oeuvre. A hotel receptionist's father is held sort-of hostage to ensure her co-operation during a flight home. The criminals seem to have gone to far much trouble to achieve what they want - a carefully placed bomb would have diposed of the plot. Brian Cox collects another easy paycheck as yet another father possibly marked for death, and the principals are pleasant enough to watch.

CXI: Be Cool (F. Gary Gray, 2005)
Gruelish Elmore Leonard sequel where various gangsters, rappers and Russians fight over owed money, witnesses to an assassination and a disputed music contract. John Travolta treds water, James Woods offers an amusing cameo, and the best bits involve The Rock as a gay bodyguard. Ho hum.

Totals: 101 - [Cinema: 32; DVD: 69; Television: 10]

Meanwhile, back at the totals:

2913 / 4000 words. 73% done!


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