June Music

(June 30, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in June. It’s a good mix of stuff… old and new. And new stuff from old favourites like Aksak Maboul: Hm. Well, there’s not actually that much new stuff from new people this month, is there? Last month we had Irreversible Intanglements and Yves Tumor, but this month we have a 1984 … Continue reading June Music

ELC1995: Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny

(June 29, 2020)

Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny #1-4 by Elaine Lee, Dan Spiegle and Will Simpson, published by Dark Horse comics. (See this for what this blog series is about.) Hm! I assumed that this was an adaptation of one of the movies? Wasn’t one of them called something like “Spear of Destiny”? But it’s … Continue reading ELC1995: Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny

Home Renovations

(June 28, 2020)

So, I’ve got this chair on the balcony, and it’s got this brilliant design…. See if you can detect the minor irritating problem here. 1, 2… Yes, exactly. So whenever the weather turns nice and I want to sit down in it, there’s usually still a puddle there, and I can’t just tip it over … Continue reading Home Renovations

ELC1993: Ragman: Cry of the Dead

(June 27, 2020)

Ragman: Cry of the Dead #1-6 by Elaine Lee and Gabriel Morrissette, published by DC Comics. (See this for what this blog series is about.) This is the only series Lee wrote for DC Comics proper, but I’ll be covering her Helix and Vertigo (both DC imprints) later in this blog series. Let’s read the … Continue reading ELC1993: Ragman: Cry of the Dead

ELC1990: Steeltown Rockers

(June 25, 2020)

Steeltown Rockers #1-6 by Elaine Lee, Steve Leialoha and others. I wasn’t planning on doing the Lee comics in chronological order, but I think this may be the earliest one of the ones I’m covering in this blog series, anyway? (Oh, Here’s an explanation of what this blog series is.) Let’s read the first three … Continue reading ELC1990: Steeltown Rockers

Elaine Lee Comics

(June 24, 2020)

Starstruck, written by Elaine Lee and with artwork by Michael William Kaluta is one of my favourite comics. It’s certainly my favourite genre comic — it’s an exhilarating reading experience, and seemed to hint at an entirely new way of doing comics. Over the years, I’ve re-read it many times… mostly because they keep releasing … Continue reading Elaine Lee Comics

Totally Epic

(June 23, 2020)

Half a year ago I started (re-)reading everything published by Epic Comics. Today, I finished. It was an… it was an… isn’t there an expression for “big task”? I guess not. It was a big task. And stupid. Let’s not forget stupid — I never should have done it, but I did get to read … Continue reading Totally Epic

Officially The Best Redux

(June 13, 2020)

As a contrast, after watching a year’s worth of Netflix movies, I thought it would be fun to watch all the films on the Sight & Sound directors’ poll, so I did, and probably bored all you all to death while doing it. Or was that the COVID? It was probably the COVID. *crosses fingers* … Continue reading Officially The Best Redux

OTB#1: Tokyo Story

(June 10, 2020)

Tokyo Story. Yasujirô Ozu. 1953. ⚄ We’ve reached the end of this blog series, and we go out on a really good one. It’s a really moving film; even more so than that bicycle thief one. I can totally see why this ended up as #1 in 2012: The performances are swell, the cinematography is … Continue reading OTB#1: Tokyo Story

OTB#2: 2001: A Space Odyssey

(June 10, 2020)

2001: A Space Odyssey. Stanley Kubrick. 1968. ⚅ The end is nigh! For this blog series. I think… I haven’t seen this movie since the 80s? I think I saw it in a movie theatre? Yeah, I’m pretty sure I did. And then on VHS later. When thinking back on it, there’s so many scenes … Continue reading OTB#2: 2001: A Space Odyssey

OTB#2: Citizen Kane

(June 9, 2020)

Citizen Kane. Orson Welles. 1941. ⚂ I have seen this movie a number of times before — I’m not a complete moron. (Note: “Complete”.) But it’s been several decades, and I just remember some flashes of a huge, empty house, and a sled being thrown into an incinerator? Oh, now it’s coming back to me… … Continue reading OTB#2: Citizen Kane

OTB#4: 8½

(June 8, 2020)

8½. Federico Fellini. 1963. ⚅ I watched this (wow) six years ago, and it’s a wonderful movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#5: Taxi Driver

(June 8, 2020)

Taxi Driver. Martin Scorsese. 1976. ⚅ OK, let me just tell you where I’m coming from: I don’t like Martin Scorsese’s movies. All the ones I can recall seeing are about uninteresting morons that do uninteresting and stupid things. They’re usually competently shot, with a cast of actors that make watching the movies not sheer … Continue reading OTB#5: Taxi Driver

OTB#6: Apocalypse Now

(June 8, 2020)

Apocalypse Now. Francis Ford Coppola. 1979. ⚃ I’ve seen this a couple of times before? But back in the 80s. I remember being quite taken with most of Coppola’s movies at the time — I even liked One from the Heart and Rumble Fish (well, sort of). Sitting down to watch this, though, I have … Continue reading OTB#6: Apocalypse Now

OTB#7: Vertigo

(June 6, 2020)

Vertigo. Alfred Hitchcock. 1958. ⚅ This movie is #1 on the critics’ poll. I have seen this before, of course, but… it’s probably a while ago? Is this the one with the Dali sequences? Hm… No, that was Spellbound! Which I have to see again. Oh right, this is the one with Kim Novak… Which … Continue reading OTB#7: Vertigo

OTB#7: The Godfather

(June 5, 2020)

The Godfather. Francis Ford Coppola. 1972. ⚄ I watched the second episode in this series a couple of months ago, and it was (to my great surprise) quite fun. So I’m guessing this is gonna suck. [five minutes pass] I can’t stop staring at the huge wads of cotton they’ve stuffed into Brando’s face: He … Continue reading OTB#7: The Godfather

OTB#9: Mirror

(June 5, 2020)

The Mirror. Andrei Tarkovski. 1975. ⚅ I watched this film when doing the one-movie-from-each-country blog thing. It’s really good, but I think Stalker is better, really. And perhaps Solaris, too? But I can kinda see why that one isn’t on this OTB list… I think… Anyway! This one is really good, too. This blog post … Continue reading OTB#9: Mirror

OTB#10: The Bicycle Thieves

(June 5, 2020)

Bicycle Thieves. Vittorio De Sica. 1948. ⚅ I watched this amazing movie in 2014? I’m not rewatching it now, because I’m all out of kleenexes. *sniff* I’m tearing up just thinking about the movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#11: Breathless

(June 5, 2020)

Breathless. Jean-Luc Godard. 1960. ⚄ I watched this some years ago, and it’s a wonderful movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#12: Raging Bull

(June 5, 2020)

Raging Bull. Martin Scorsese. 1980. ⚁ OK, we’re now in the final dozen movies in this blog series, and what’s striking about the final (i.e., most highly rated) movies is that they’re mostly box office smashes: It is, perhaps, not surprising, exactly — but it’s definitely a thing. It’s not that the OTB list is … Continue reading OTB#12: Raging Bull

OTB#13: Persona

(June 4, 2020)

Persona. Ingmar Bergman. 1966. ⚅ I watched this movie two years ago during the 87 Bergman Things blog series, but I wanted to watch it again, so here you go: Probably a slightly different series of screenshots? You gets what you pays for, dead reader. [thirty minutes pass] Looking at the remaining films on the … Continue reading OTB#13: Persona

OTB#13: The 400 Blows

(June 4, 2020)

The 400 Blows. François Truffaut. 1959. ⚅ I really thought I’d seen this before, but I couldn’t find it anywhere… until I searched for Quatre Cents Coups. Duh. Anyway, I watched this in 2016, and now I’m watching it again. I don’t actually remember much of this (pre?-)Nouvelle Vague movie other than that it was … Continue reading OTB#13: The 400 Blows

OTB#13: Andrei Rublev

(June 3, 2020)

Andrei Rublev. Andrei Tarkovsky. 1966. ⚂ I watched this a couple of years ago, and it’s a bit naff. Which was really surprising for me, because Tarkovsky is usually absolutely brilliant. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#16: Fanny and Alexander

(June 3, 2020)

Fanny & Alexander. Ingmar Bergman. 1982. ⚅ I watched this in 2018, but I’ve watched it a bunch of times before. It is 100% amazeballs. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#17: Seven Samurai

(June 3, 2020)

Seven Samurai. Akira Kurosawa. 1954. ⚂ [two minutes pass] I thought I had seen this movie before, but now I think not? And it lasts ALL THE HOURS. I may have to take a pause in the middle of this. I mean, I got up at 6 this morning and it’s 20 now… [half an … Continue reading OTB#17: Seven Samurai

OTB#18: Rashomon

(June 3, 2020)

Rashomon. Akira Kurosawa. 1950. ⚃ [fifteen minutes pass] I’ve seen this before, of course, but only once? I think? But the Rashomon concept is so well-known that it feels like I’m just waiting for the plot elements to happen… which isn’t the best way to watch a movie. So far, the cinematography has been a … Continue reading OTB#18: Rashomon

May Music

(May 31, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in May. The albums I bought this month seems to be all over the place… new stuff, old stuff… and unusually enough, I haven’t actually listened to any of it, because I’ve been listening to old stuff. But I can recommend this one:

OTB#19: Barry Lyndon

(May 31, 2020)

Barry Lyndon. Stanley Kubrick. 1975. ⚁ Oh, I saw this as a (young) teenager. I remember renting it on VHS. What I remember from it is… er… that there were a lot of green hills? Correct! I also remember that I really liked the movie. And that it’s somehow a Kubrick movie that all Kubrick … Continue reading OTB#19: Barry Lyndon

OTB#19: Ordet

(May 31, 2020)

Ordet. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1955. ⚄ I watched this in 2015, and it’s really good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#21: Au Hasard Balthazar

(May 31, 2020)

Au hasard Balthazar. Robert Bresson. 1966. ⚃ I watched this five years ago. I remember liking this a lot more than I apparently did. I was probably wrong! This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#22: Sunrise

(May 31, 2020)

Sunrise. F.W. Murnau. 1927. ⚅ This is a 2K version (from Eureka (Masters of Cinema)), but it’s only been very lightly restored? That is, it’s got a lot of horizontal shudder going on, which is usually the first thing they fix (since it can be done pretty much automatically by computers these days)… but otherwise, … Continue reading OTB#22: Sunrise

OTB#22: Modern Times

(May 31, 2020)

I think that guy might have nose powder. Modern Times. Charles Chaplin. 1936. ⚄ Here’s the thing: Obviously Chaplin is a genius etc bla bla bla, but… they’re not movies that I would seek out to watch on my own, because… I just don’t enjoy them that much? So I’ve never seen this one; perhaps … Continue reading OTB#22: Modern Times

OTB#22: L’Atalante

(May 28, 2020)

L’Atalante. Jean Vigo. 1934. ⚄ I watched this in 2015, and … I vaguely remember this movie. It’s pretty spiffy. And has cats! This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#22: La Règle du jeu

(May 28, 2020)

La Regle du jeu. Jean Renoir. 1939. ⚃ I watched this in… 2014!? That’s like half a lifetime ago. I have absolutely no recollection of having seen this, but apparently I wasn’t too impressed. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: The Night of the Hunter

(May 28, 2020)

The Night of the Hunter. Charles Laughton. 1955. ⚅ Ooo. This is a good one, I think. I may have seen this only once before? Or… I think I remember thinking the last time I saw this (in the 90s? at the Cinematheque?) that I must have seen it before, so I was probably scarred … Continue reading OTB#26: The Night of the Hunter

OTB#26: Touch of Evil

(May 28, 2020)

Touch of Evil. Orson Welles. 1958. ⚄ I watched this movie in 2015, and it was apparently really good. I remember zilch about it now, though. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: The Battle of Algiers

(May 28, 2020)

The Battle of Algiers. Gillo Pontecorvo. 1966. ⚃ I watched this movie when doing the “one movie from every country” thing. It’s a bit disappointing. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: La strada

(May 28, 2020)

La Strada. Federico Fellini. 1954. ⚄ I talked about this movie here. It’s good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#30: Stalker

(May 28, 2020)

Stalker. Andrei Tarkovsky. 1979. ⚅ I was so sure I’d already blogged about this movie that I didn’t re-buy it for this Officially The Best blog series. But then it turned out that I hadn’t, so I rebought it on bluray. Which took weeks to get here. And now it turns out that the bluray … Continue reading OTB#30: Stalker

Useful Consumer Review

(May 25, 2020)

A few years back, I got a Dyson robot vacuum — the 360 Eye. I’d tried various other robot vacuums before, like the iRobot thingie, but the problem with those is that they’re… so noisy. I mean, not to me: I can just leave the room and sit somewhere else. But they seem to be … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Self-Hosting WordPress Even More

(May 24, 2020)

I know, I know; all blogs that’s hosted on WordPress inevitably turns into a blog about WordPress… Sorry! This is just a post of aimless complaining about an issue that’s so minor you won’t believe it, but these days there aren’t anybody on my lawn that I can shout at. Sorry! I started this blogging … Continue reading Self-Hosting WordPress Even More

I Am So Observant

(May 22, 2020)

They’ve been … grinding away at the stairs in this building for the last few days. The house is from the late 1800s, and (apparently unusually) the tiles in the stairwell are made from concrete, not ceramics. So they’re porous, and grow ever-more dirty over the years? I’m not an expert. I didn’t know that … Continue reading I Am So Observant

Outline

(May 4, 2020)

I’ve just read the second book in Rachel Cusk’s Outline trilogy, and it’s fabulous — perhaps even better than the first? Anyway, it reminded me that I read a shattering and hilarious parody of Cusk in a Norwegian newspaper a few months back. So I translated it into English; I hope nobody minds? I think … Continue reading Outline

OTB#30: Amarcord

(May 2, 2020)

Amarcord. Federico Fellini. 1973. ⚂ Ah, yes… I saw this a few years ago, but on a horrible interlaced DVD (so the effective resolution was horrible). The is a 2K version restored by Criterion, and… it… still doesn’t really look very good? Like… the colours are kinda all over the place and… but that’s probably … Continue reading OTB#30: Amarcord

April Music

(April 30, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in April. Oh my. That’s a lot of new music. How did that happen? Did I spend the entire month of April on my couch shopping? Yes, I did. The two main threads here are my continuing fascination with Ze Records. They were a late-70s/early-80s New York record company (very, very New … Continue reading April Music

OTB#30: L’Avventura

(April 29, 2020)

L’avventura. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1960. ⚅ Emacs tells me that I watched this in 2014, but that was before I started movie blogging 4 realz, so I have no recollection of this movie. But I’ve quite enjoyed the other Antonioni films on the list, so this is probably going to be spiffy. [half an hour passes] … Continue reading OTB#30: L’Avventura

OTB#30: The Godfather: Part II

(April 25, 2020)

The Godfather Part II. Francis Ford Coppola. 1974. ⚄ I’m watching the movies on this list of the officially best movies in reverse order, and since the first Godfather movie is further up on the list, I’m watching part II first. ¡Scandalo! But I gotta keep the blogging concept going, right? Right. I haven’t seen … Continue reading OTB#30: The Godfather: Part II

OTB#30: Il Vangelo secondo Matteo

(April 21, 2020)

The Gospel According to Matthew. Pier Paolo Pasolini. 1964. ⚅ I watched this move a few years ago, and it’s pretty spiffy. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#30: City Lights

(April 21, 2020)

City Lights. Charles Chaplin. 1931. ⚃ Oh, wow. It’s a silent movie? From 1931? I thought Hollywood had stopped making these at least a couple years before? And everybody had hastily started converting everything into talkies? Was Chaplin one of those people who thought that silent movies were for art and sound was vulgar or … Continue reading OTB#30: City Lights

OTB#30: Come And See

(April 21, 2020)

Come and See. Elem Klimov. 1985. ⚂ I watched this movie the other year, and I wasn’t very impressed, but that might have been because of the horrendous DVD transfer I was watching? This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Un condamné à mort s’est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut

(April 21, 2020)

A Man Escaped. Robert Bresson. 1956. ⚄ There’s four films by Bresson on this “officially the best” list, which is a lot? I don’t think there’s anybody with five movies, but Bresson is tied for the coveted Most Movies On The List prize with Ingmar Bergman, Federico Fellini, Jean-Luc Godard, Stanley Kubrick and John Cassavetes. … Continue reading OTB#37: Un condamné à mort s’est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut

OTB#37: Some Like It Hot

(April 20, 2020)

Some Like It Hot. Billy Wilder. 1959. ⚄ I’ve blogged about this movie before, but we’re in a pretty serious grouping of movies on this list, so I want to re-watch it. Here’s a second look at the screenshots from that movie. You’re welcome. The last time I watched this, it was on an interlaced … Continue reading OTB#37: Some Like It Hot

My New Exnovations in Packaging Blog

(April 18, 2020)

Oh boy oh boy! I braved the throngs of shuffling zombies I mean panting jogging sportspeople to go to the post office to collect a biiig package from Staples: (Orange for scale.) What could it be!? It was… some Post-It index flags (the primary and vital tool for my comics blog). Thanks, Staples! Your packing … Continue reading My New Exnovations in Packaging Blog

OTB#37: La dolce vita

(April 17, 2020)

La dolce vita. Federico Fellini. 1960. ⚅ I must have seen this before? Right? But I can’t really recall it… This is the one with the fountain scene? I must have seen it… or perhaps I’ve just seen that scene, which is included in every documentary about Italian cinema. Oh, yeah! Here’s the opening shot … Continue reading OTB#37: La dolce vita

Storage… To The Max!

(April 16, 2020)

For some years now, I’ve been ripping DVDs (and blu-rays) before watching, both for practical reasons and stupid reasons. One theoretical nice side effect of all this is that I can re-watch movies without rummaging through boxes of stuff… And I actually did re-watch something this year, although I should have re-bought it on blu-ray. … Continue reading Storage… To The Max!

OTB#37: Close-Up

(April 14, 2020)

Close-Up. Abbas Kiarostami. 1990. ⚄ This is one of the rare movies on this “officially the best” from outside of the US/Europe/Japan/Hong Kong Axis of Movies, and I watched it for my World of Films and Cocktails blog series. It’s really good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Viridiana

(April 14, 2020)

Viridiana. Luis Buñuel. 1961. ⚄ The third and final Buñuel movie on this list of movies. (Well, or the first, if you’re counting from the top, which would be more logical…) Eep! No English subtitles on this bluray! *phew* Subscene to the rescue. Without kindly pirates it would be next to impossible to watch the … Continue reading OTB#37: Viridiana

OTB#37: Passion of Joan of Arc

(April 13, 2020)

The Passion of Joan of Arc. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1928. ⚅ This film is absolutely amazeballs, and I wrote about it here. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Playtime

(April 13, 2020)

Playtime. Jacques Tati. 1967. ⚅ So this is where Roy Andersson got his aesthetic from! Oh my. I realise now that I’m in a kinda multiple French delusion zone: For some reason, the name “Tati” made me think both of that umbrella movie by Jacques Demy, so slightly understandable, but also of Louis de Funès, … Continue reading OTB#37: Playtime

OTB#44: Le mépris

(April 9, 2020)

Les Mepris. Jean-Luc Godard. 1963. ⚂ I watched this in 2015 and didn’t like it at all, apparently. I was probably wrong, because the screenshots look lovely. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#44: Once Upon a Time in the West

(April 9, 2020)

One Upon a Time in the West. Sergio Leone. 1968. ⚃ I’ve seen all the Eastwood Leone movies… but I may never have seen this one? I probably have, though, on third-generation VHS back in the 80s. Oh wow. Argento and Bertolucci? Well, the first sounds good, but not the second… OH WOW! This is … Continue reading OTB#44: Once Upon a Time in the West

OTB#44: The Apartment

(April 9, 2020)

The Apartment. Billy Wilder. 1960. ⚂ I watched this movie five years ago, and apparently I didn’t like it? I can’t remember why. I mean, it looks fun? I may be wrong here? I kinda want to re-watch it, but not with that DVD transfer, which sounds tragic. This blog post is part of the … Continue reading OTB#44: The Apartment

OTB#44: Hour of the Wolf

(April 9, 2020)

Hour of the Wolf. Ingmar Bergman. 1968. ⚃ I watched this a couple years ago, and I think it’s an odd Bergman movie to land on this “Officially the Best” list. It’s… I think there’s at least 20 better Bergman movies out there? I mean, it’s not bad, but… This blog post is part of … Continue reading OTB#44: Hour of the Wolf

OTB#48: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

(April 9, 2020)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Milos Forman. 1975. ⚄ I think I saw this when I was a child. I remember… it being sad? Yes. That’s all I remember. And I think I may have it confused with Birdy. And… Oh! Now I remember the Mad parody of it. There’s some pillow action at … Continue reading OTB#48: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

Noindex Redux

(April 8, 2020)

A month ago, I wondered whether there was any way to make those useless WordPress overview pages (i.e., category, author and “page X” pages) go away from search index results. To recap, whenever I’m looking for something, Google has a tendency to return a result pointing to “page 35” of somebody’s blog, but when I … Continue reading Noindex Redux

OTB#48: L’eclisse

(April 6, 2020)

L’eclisse. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1962. ⚅ Oh, L’eclisse… not Réglisse… So this isn’t a French movie about liquorice, but an Italian movie about an eclipse. Makes more sense. [time passes] OH MY EMACS! Everything in this movie is so gorgeous! The performers, the lighting, the costumes, the interiors, the framing, the film stock, the 2K transfer… … Continue reading OTB#48: L’eclisse

Is This The Kind Of Thing You Should Be Worried About Finding On The Back Stairs?

(April 6, 2020)

The Campaign Against Link Rot

(April 6, 2020)

This blog has been going for a while, and more and more of the very, very useful external links (ahem) now point to sites that have disappeared, or that have rearranged all their internal links. This is sad. I wondered whether there was a tool that’d just point all the broken links to archive.org, and … Continue reading The Campaign Against Link Rot

The Google Audit

(April 6, 2020)

As I’m sure you remember perfectly, in 2012 (!) I did something silly (no really): I scripted a teensy thing that would check what was playing on the stereo, and then search Youtube for a video that matched that as best it could (based on artist name, track title and the length of the track), … Continue reading The Google Audit

OTB#48: Lawrence of Arabia

(April 4, 2020)

Lawrence of Arabia. David Lean. 1962. ⚁ This isn’t a movie I’ve looked forwards to watching. I think I’ve seen it… a couple of times? Back in the 80s? I seem to remember it being one of those double VHS box things? And all I remember about the movie is that it’s one portentous desert … Continue reading OTB#48: Lawrence of Arabia

March Music

(April 1, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in March. After a very slow February, I pulled myself together and got buyin’. And not just new old music: But mostly. And, hey, a new single from Team Dresch!

So You Want To Run Your Own Mail Server…

(March 25, 2020)

Whenever the subject of running your own mail server comes up, there’ll always be two people who chime in. The first will say “No, don’t do it! It’s a virtually impossible thing to do these days!” The second will say “Don’t listen to that guy! It’s trivial! I just installed one and I had no … Continue reading So You Want To Run Your Own Mail Server…

Outgoing DKIM and exim4

(March 22, 2020)

So, I sent an email to my sister, and I didn’t hear back. After exchanging some SMS-es, it turns out my mails went to the spam box on Gmail. Rude! That’s a new development for my MTA (quimby.gnus.org), so I tried poking around seeing whether I’d ended up in a blacklist or something. But, no, … Continue reading Outgoing DKIM and exim4

OTB#48: The Searchers

(March 22, 2020)

The Searchers. John Ford. 1956. ⚃ There’s sure a whole bunch of westerns on this survey, padner. I got this one from a 20 disc box set some years back. I think it was this? That’s a pretty solid collection. This is the only John Ford movie on the list, which is somewhat surprising. And … Continue reading OTB#48: The Searchers

OTB#48: Pickpocket

(March 21, 2020)

Pickpocket. Robert Bresson. 1959. ⚅ Oh, I’ve got this both on DVD from Artificial Eye and bluray from Criterion… I’m watching the Criterion release. OH MY EMACS! Bresson is straight from the screen into my pretentious mind. Those affectless deliveries! The moral quandaries! Those French hairstyles! It’s just pure fabulousness. I’m there from the first … Continue reading OTB#48: Pickpocket

OTB#48: Pather Panchali

(March 20, 2020)

Pather Panchali. Satyajit Ray. 1955. ⚄ There aren’t a lot of movies on this list from outside the US/Europe/Japan/Hong Kong axis. Is this the only one? Haven’t made a survey, but it kinda looks like it? Uhm… Oh! It’s got Close-Up by Abbas Kiarostami, too. (From Iran.) That one’s really good. My guess is that … Continue reading OTB#48: Pather Panchali

Washing

(March 19, 2020)

OTB#48: Man with a Movie Camera

(March 19, 2020)

Man With A Movie Camera. Dziga Vertov. 1929. ⚅ I think… when English translators are translating from certain languages… they always end up with “scenario” being “SCENARIO” instead of “script”, which is what it means… At least that’s my impression after reading a book about movies translated from French to English the other month. And … Continue reading OTB#48: Man with a Movie Camera

OTB#48: Rear Window

(March 18, 2020)

Rear Window. Alfred Hitchcock. 1954. ⚅ I saw this movie just the other year (I think… on a plane?), but now I’ve got it in 2K, so I’m rewatching it. The movie is kinda perfect, but this 2K transfer isn’t. Or perhaps it was just this soft on the celluloid (or er whatever the young … Continue reading OTB#48: Rear Window

OTB#48: Goodfellas

(March 18, 2020)

Goodfellas. Martin Scorsese. 1990. ⚂ My most shocking, controversial opinion ever is this: I think Scorsese is overrated. I was amused by all the accolades The Irishman got when it came out. I mean, just look at the critics falling over themselves in trying to praise it more than everybody else. It’s a mediocre movie, … Continue reading OTB#48: Goodfellas

Did You Ever Wonder What It Would Look Like If You Pointed A Lamp Down Into A Scanner And Then Scanned?

(March 17, 2020)

No? But now you know.

OTB#48: Shoah

(March 17, 2020)

Shoah. Claude Lanzmann. 1985. ⚂ I suspect I’ve seen this before: Was it serialised on TV in the 80s? But it’s just a perfect day for watching this nine hour kneeslapper, isn’t it? Oh, yeah, I have definitely seen this before: I remember the really annoying way it has of have people talking in Polish/Czech/whatever … Continue reading OTB#48: Shoah

OTB#48: Psycho

(March 14, 2020)

Psycho. Alfred Hitchcock. 1960. ⚅ Oooh! Psycho! I haven’t seen this for quite some time! And now in a restored 2K version! Oh, it’s not in “acedemy” ratio? That’s the way I remember it, but perhaps it was pan-and-scanned when I watched it on VHS in the 80s… Hitchcock was a fucking asshole and apparently … Continue reading OTB#48: Psycho

Organs

(March 14, 2020)

I was just walking back to the couch to watch the next movie when… OH MY EMACS! I’ve had that Zamioculcas for over a decade, and it’s never done that before. Is it Corona!?

OTB#59: Blow Up

(March 14, 2020)

Blow Up. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1966. ⚄ Whu uh. I thought I had seen this movie before, but in my mind it’s in black and white, and it’s set in Italy. This is in colour and is set in the UK. From the first five minutes, I would have guessed that this was a Nick Roeg … Continue reading OTB#59: Blow Up

OTB#59: Gertrud

(March 13, 2020)

Gertrud. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1964. ⚅ Oh, wow — a Dreyer movie from 1964? I had no idea he lived that long. Hm… Ah. It’s his final movie. I’ve seen the fabulous Joan of Arc he did back in the 20s, but not a lot of his later movies. This is some grade-A bizarre acting. … Continue reading OTB#59: Gertrud

Stockpiling the Essentials

(March 13, 2020)

OTB#59: Aguirre, Wrath of God

(March 12, 2020)

Aguirre, Wrath of God. Werner Herzog. 1972. ⚅ Wow, this is the only Herzog movie on the list… and it’s a Herzog movie I haven’t watched! Amazeballs. (Not really.) Anyway, this is so incredibly lush… every scenes seems out of control and fraught with danger. And Klaus Kinski is insane here. (And probably in real … Continue reading OTB#59: Aguirre, Wrath of God

OTB#59: A Woman Under the Influence

(March 12, 2020)

A Woman Under the Influence. John Cassavetes. 1974. ⚅ This is the fourth (and highest-rated) Cassavetes movie on the list of Best Movies Ever (Officially). OK, after watching all these Cassavetes movies, it’s hard not to be charmed by his aesthetic. I think that he’s thinking that he’s showing us actual, real, life, and everything … Continue reading OTB#59: A Woman Under the Influence

OTB#59: Il conformista

(March 12, 2020)

The Conformist. Bernardo Bertolucci. 1970. ☐ I am not a fan of Bertolucci, so I was happy to see that there’s only one movie by him on the “Best Of” list. And this is movie of his I haven’t seen before, so that’s even better. Perhaps this one will be great! There’s a whole bunch … Continue reading OTB#59: Il conformista

The Mysteries of WordPress

(March 12, 2020)

I moved to a self-hosted WordPress last week, and importing the images failed, so I had to do that manually. (That is, with rsync.) Everything seemed to work fine, but then I noticed that loading the images of some of the older pages seemed to take a long time. Like, downloading megabytes and megabytes of … Continue reading The Mysteries of WordPress

OTB#59: Blue Velvet

(March 9, 2020)

Blue Velvet. David Lynch. 1986. ⚅ I think I may only have seen this movie once before, which is odd, because I love David Lynch. On the other hand, I remember not being … thrilled? by this movie when I saw it. Which was probably on VHS in 1987 when I was 19. What I … Continue reading OTB#59: Blue Velvet

OTB#59: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

(March 9, 2020)

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. Sergio Leone. 1966. ⚄ Has anybody remarked on the similarity between the first trumpet thing (mow mow moooow) in the theme song and the Sad Trombone thing? No? Anyway, this is the first Leone movie in this blog series, and it’s a movie I’ve seen a couple times … Continue reading OTB#59: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

OTB#59: La grande illusion

(March 9, 2020)

La Grande Illusion. Jean Renoir. 1937. ⚄ I watched this movie about five years ago, and it’s pretty spiffy. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#67: Ugetsu Monogatari

(March 8, 2020)

Ugetsu. Kenji Mizoguchi. 1953. ⚂ I read a compilation of Cahiers de cinema (the 50s years) the other month, and one film that was mentioned a lot was this one. I haven’t seen it before… I haven’t seen it before, and it definitely has it going on. But… there’s a whiff of super-simplified morality play … Continue reading OTB#67: Ugetsu Monogatari

This Is A Test

(March 8, 2020)

This blog has been hosted on WordPress.com for many a year. It has, all in all, been a very pleasant experience: It feels like the uptime has been at least 110%, and most everything just works. The problems with using that solution is that it’s very restrictive. There’s so many little things you just can’t … Continue reading This Is A Test

Search Index Cleanliness Is Next To Something

(March 5, 2020)

Allegedly, 30% of all web pages are now WordPress. I’m guessing most of these WordPress sites aren’t typical blog sites, but there sure are many of them out there. Which makes it so puzzling why Google and WordPress don’t really play together very well. Lemme just use on of my own stupid hobby sites, Totally … Continue reading Search Index Cleanliness Is Next To Something

OTB#67: Badlands

(March 3, 2020)

Badlands. Terrence Malick. 1973. ⚄ As usual with American movies depicting teenagers, it’s always confusing: Are these older actors really supposed to be teenagers, or are they developmentally challenged adults? Spacek looks mid-20s, but acts like she’s aiming for twelve, and Sheen looks like he’s late-30s, but acts like aiming for fifteen? Or are they … Continue reading OTB#67: Badlands

BC&B: Morue à la Provençale le Caméléon w/ Aïoli

(February 29, 2020)

Food time! The salt cod dishes in the Bistro Cooking book have been pretty spiffy… this one looks like it’s in a more bacalaoish direction than the previous ones, what with all the tomatoes and stuff. There’s all the usual stuff… and then a whole lot of herbs. Even before starting to cook, it smells … Continue reading BC&B: Morue à la Provençale le Caméléon w/ Aïoli

February Music

(February 29, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in February. *gasp* Virtually no new music! Well, it’s been a slow February.

Parallax Error Beheads You

(February 25, 2020)

tl;dr: I made a silly 3D web page thing. Yadda yadda: For entirely nostalgic reasons, I’ve been buying a bunch of paperback books published by the largest Norwegian publishing house, Gyldendal, in the 60s and 70s. I guess these are the Norwegian equivalents of what Penguin was at the time: Cheap, but nice and with … Continue reading Parallax Error Beheads You

The Fate of gmane.org

(February 25, 2020)

As previously discussed in this embarrassing saga, gmane.org was bought by Yomura Corporation, and they have now let the domain expire. The domain went to the normal Namesilo auction process, and I was waiting for it to appear there so I could buy it back. I didn’t check often enough, and before I was able … Continue reading The Fate of gmane.org

OTB#67: Vivre sa vie

(February 24, 2020)

Vivre sa vie. Jean-Luc Godard. 1962. ⚅ Godard movies of this era are such a delight to watch. He’s having so much fun, being all mischievous and stuff. Like filming the actors from behind for the first five minutes, and fading the music in and out at seemingly random. He’s so punk. Every single scene … Continue reading OTB#67: Vivre sa vie

OTB#67: Blade Runner

(February 23, 2020)

Blade Runner. Ridley Scott. 1982. ⚃ Apparently, I didn’t really like this movie when I saw it some years back. It seems better in my head than a ⚃, so it’s quite possible I was too grouchy when I watched it. On the other hand, perhaps not? This blog post is part of the Officially … Continue reading OTB#67: Blade Runner

OTB#67: Sunset Blvd.

(February 23, 2020)

Sunset Boulevard. Billy Wilder. 1950. ⚄ It’s a Billy Wilder movie, so I assumed that this was a comedy. It’s not, and I’m a moron. That’s some supporting cast. This is one of three Billy Wilder movies on this “best of” list, and the only one I haven’t seen recently. (Or… ever? But it does … Continue reading OTB#67: Sunset Blvd.

OTB#67: Journey to Italy

(February 19, 2020)

Journey to Italy. Roberto Rossellini. 1954. ⚅ This 2K restoration looks great: Another class release by the British Film Institute. Your tax money at work, for some values of “your”. But… “English version”? Oh! They seem to be moving their mouths in a slightly English-looking way? Did Rossellini film several versions of this? (As usual … Continue reading OTB#67: Journey to Italy

BC&B: Tranche de Gigot La Boutarde w/ Tarte au Citron Madame Cartet

(February 19, 2020)

Food and book time! I usually shop specifically for the dishes in the Bistro Cooking book, but today I saw some lamb cutlets and I thought that surely there’d be a recipe for that in the book, even if that meant I had to cheat and skip forward a bit in the Les Viandes chapter. … Continue reading BC&B: Tranche de Gigot La Boutarde w/ Tarte au Citron Madame Cartet

OTB#67: In The Mood For Love

(February 18, 2020)

In The Mood For Love. Kar Wai Wong. 2000. ⚄ I saw this movie a couple of years ago, and I’m not rewatching it for this blog series. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#67: Singin’ in the Rain

(February 17, 2020)

Singin’ in the Rain. Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen. 1952. ⚅ Hey! We’re no longer on #75! It was a 16-way split, so we stayed on the same number for a while. #67 is only split between… eight movies… Oh well. I’ve seen this movie a bunch of times, but it’s been a few years … Continue reading OTB#67: Singin’ in the Rain

OTB#75: M

(February 16, 2020)

M. Fritz Lang. 1931. ⚃ Oh! It’s German? I really thought I’d seen this before and that it was an American movie? Perhaps I was thinking of the 1951 Losey movie… but… I do remember Peter Lorre being in it? I’m all kinds of confused. Anyway, this is a very narrow movie. I mean, format … Continue reading OTB#75: M

BC&B: Poulet Basquaise w/ Céleri Rémoulade

(February 15, 2020)

Food time. The next starter in the Bistro Cooking book is another rémoulade. And… it does look like a nice slaw, doesn’t it? Celery root and Dijon mustard. But… that’s like the entire dish? Just a slaw as a dish? That’s… kinda… Perhaps this is the the best slaw ever. Anyway, it’s just those ingredients. … Continue reading BC&B: Poulet Basquaise w/ Céleri Rémoulade

OTB#75: Battleship Potemkin

(February 13, 2020)

Potemkin. Sergei M. Eisenstein. 1925. ⚅ I’ve been looking for the Pet Shop Boys version of this movie, but that’s apparently never been released, so I watched this movie while playing the CD and things probably didn’t line up perfectly… I mean, it can’t because silent movies have a kinda vague connection to timing anyway… … Continue reading OTB#75: Battleship Potemkin

New Lists Can Now Be Added To Gmane

(February 12, 2020)

I’ve now hacked up a new admin interface to the Gmane mailing list archive. If you want to add new lists, use the new admin interface. Older lists can also be edited, and you can request resubscription and stuff. This stuff has not exactly been rigorously tested, so if you have any problems with the … Continue reading New Lists Can Now Be Added To Gmane

OTB#75: The General

(February 11, 2020)

The General. Clyde Bruckman / Buster Keaton. 1926. ⚃ Lobster? Who are they, then? Over the years, the companies doing releases and restoration of classic (and not-so-classic) movies has been ever-changing. Let’s see… there’s Criterion, of course, who’s been going all along. And BFI, doing more and more stuff, presumably gummint-funded. But I was thinking … Continue reading OTB#75: The General

OTB#75: There Will Be Blood

(February 11, 2020)

There Will Be Blood. Paul Thomas Anderson. 2007. ⚂ Is this one of those movies designed for an actor that acts big to be allowed to be totally over the top so that he can win an Oscar (see all male actor Oscar wins ever)? Oh it is: The standard joke is that the craft … Continue reading OTB#75: There Will Be Blood

Reagent is… Nice?

(February 11, 2020)

I’ve been procrastinating on writing a web-based admin interface for news.gmane.io… because I just haven’t been able to make up my mind as to what technologies to use. I hate learning new stuff, but it feels pretty stagnant to tap away in Javascript (on the frontend) and PHP for whatever has to happen on the … Continue reading Reagent is… Nice?

BC&B: Gardiane La Cargue w/ Cervelas Rémoulade

(February 10, 2020)

Busyness never ends, so I’ve had no time to read anything… which means that I can’t cook anything either. It’s this whole concept. Finally, time for some food. So the starter couldn’t possibly be simpler: It’s sausages with a Dijon mayonnaise. But that means that I get another crack at making mayonnaise: My two previous … Continue reading BC&B: Gardiane La Cargue w/ Cervelas Rémoulade

Strict Lamp Policies

(February 10, 2020)

I bought a lamp the other day. I had no idea what I had signed up for! “Failure to do so will be punished according to the current national legislation.” Is this what they call a zero-click license agreement?

OTB#75: A Clockwork Orange

(February 6, 2020)

A Clockwork Orange. Stanley Kubrick. 1971. ⚂ I’ve seen this before, but it was in my teens and I don’t really remember much about the actual movie. But everything from it is part of popular culture now, so it all seems so familiar anyway. Surely those bar tables aren’t very practical. Virtually no critics thought … Continue reading OTB#75: A Clockwork Orange

OTB#75: Angst essen Seele auf

(February 6, 2020)

Fear Eats The Soul. Rainer Werner Fassbinder. 1973. ⚄ This is the only Fassbinder on the “best of” list, and it’s a movie I can’t recall seeing anybody mention before, so I’m excited. Well, some things just aren’t believable here! Like the bartender not knowing how to pour beer! That’s a lot of foam, dude. … Continue reading OTB#75: Angst essen Seele auf

OTB#75: Hidden

(February 5, 2020)

Hidden. Michael Haneke. 2005. ⚃ I talked about this movie here. It’s the best Haneke movie I’ve seen, so I’m not shocked it ended up on this list of movies. I had expected Amour to show up either on this list or the critics’ list, but I realise now that that movie was released after … Continue reading OTB#75: Hidden

OTB#75: The Shining

(February 5, 2020)

The Shining. Stanley Kubrick. 1980. ⚄ Yesterday I watched Salò, and I may have given the impression that it’s more interesting than it is. It isn’t interesting. There’s no reason to watch it; it’s just audience abuse. So tonight (while waiting for the dinner to cook) I’m watching a much cosier movie. I don’t think … Continue reading OTB#75: The Shining

OTB#75: The Seventh Seal

(February 4, 2020)

The Seventh Seal. Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⚅ I watched this movie two years ago, and it’s fabulous, of course. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#75: Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

(February 3, 2020)

Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom. Pier Paolo Pasolini. 1975. ⚁ Well, this isn’t a movie I’ve been looking forward to seeing… I’m so over the whole épatering la bourgeoisie thing. Somewhat interestingly, the critics and the directors are really divergent on this one, only getting to the 202nd place in the critics’ poll. … Continue reading OTB#75: Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

OTB#75: Kes

(February 3, 2020)

Kes. Ken Loach. 1969. ⚃ I’ve seen this before… like, a handful of years ago? I did not much like it then: The relentless awfulness of the boy’s life is… relentless? (I have a way with words.) But perhaps I misremember. Especially now that I’ve got a 2K copy of the movie. Heh heh: The … Continue reading OTB#75: Kes

OTB#75: Mulholland Dr

(February 2, 2020)

Mulholland Drive. David Lynch. 2001. ⚅ I’ve seen this several times before, of course… but now it’s in 2K! I adore Lynch, but I wonder: Why Mulholland Dr. and not… like… Inland Empire? There’s two Lynch Movies on this list: Blue Velvet (duh) and this. Perhaps the attraction of this movie is that it’s, well, … Continue reading OTB#75: Mulholland Dr

OTB#75: Husbands

(February 2, 2020)

Husbands. John Cassavetes. 1970. ⚀ I watched this movie a few years back, and I really loathed it. I can’t quite remember why, but I was probably right? Was is something about that interminable dinner scene? Hm… This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#75: The Wild Bunch

(February 2, 2020)

The Wild Bunch. Sam Peckinpah. 1969. ⚂ Oh, I’ve got this on an old 6Mbps DVD release… I should have bought a 2K version, because it looks like that would have been really nice… OK; I’m going through all the rest of the movies to see whether they’re suspiciously small files and re-buying them. But … Continue reading OTB#75: The Wild Bunch

OTB#75: Los Olvidados

(February 1, 2020)

Los olvidados. Luis Buñuel. 1950. ⚄ I didn’t know that Buñuel made straight-up sappy movies like this. This feels like it could have been any Italian neorealist movie of its time. Only set in Mexico. Not surprising: Los Olvidados was largely disparaged by the Mexican press upon its release. It’s a very picaresque look at … Continue reading OTB#75: Los Olvidados

The Best Comics of 2019

(February 1, 2020)

When reading comics, the ones that seem particularly interesting end up in this little shelf in the living room that I can then sit and ponder. I meant to do this blog post at least a month ago, but time flies, so here goes. And I don’t have time tonight to write anything insightful (hah! … Continue reading The Best Comics of 2019

January Music

(February 1, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in January. There’s proportionally fewer Discogs finds this month, because I went through Norman Record’s Best Albums of 2019 list and picked up some stuff that seemed fun. Like black midi: Which, indeed, turns out to be very good. Well, OK, I also bought ‘ard Corr by Well ‘ard from Discogs, because … Continue reading January Music

Innovations in Music Distribution

(January 30, 2020)

I was at a concert the other day, and as usual, I checked out what wares the musicians had to sell in the interval. And there was this box: … with a card inside: It’s USB! Isn’t that great? It conducts light really well, so that if your USB hub has a LED, it looks … Continue reading Innovations in Music Distribution

OTB#75: Jaws

(January 30, 2020)

Jaws. Steven Spielberg. 1975. ⚂ This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series. I assume this has been voted the 75th best movie of all time by directors is because of the technical qualities. I mean, nobody can argue against how effective the “doon duun” scary music is. It’s beyond perfect. And … Continue reading OTB#75: Jaws

OTB#91: Pierrot le Fou

(January 30, 2020)

Pierrot le fou. Jean-Luc Godard. 1965. ⚅ I did not re-watch this movie for this blog series, but you can read about it here. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#91: Un chien andalou

(January 30, 2020)

Un Chien Andalou. Luis Buñuel. 1929. ⚄ I have never seen this, but I’ve seen shots from every scene from this movie in various articles over the years. So I knew when to hold a pillow before my face, and I still haven’t seen That Scene. This is Luis Buñuel’s famous exercise in épater la … Continue reading OTB#91: Un chien andalou

OTB#91: Chinatown

(January 30, 2020)

Chinatown. Roman Polanski. 1974. ⚄ I’ve seen this before, but I was like… twelve. The only thing I remember is the shocking ending. This is like a proper mystery movie! With lots of detecting and conspiracies and stuff. I did not remember that at all. Very moody. Nicholson is great, of course, as the somewhat … Continue reading OTB#91: Chinatown

OTB#91: La Maman et la putain

(January 28, 2020)

*gasp* Shoes in bed! La maman et la putain. Jean Eustache. 1973. ⚄ All the movies on the list of the best movies (officially) are readily available… except this one. The only legit source I could find it from was this $80 VHS tape, and since my VHS player i… somewhere… I bought a bootleg … Continue reading OTB#91: La Maman et la putain

OTB#91: Beau Travail

(January 27, 2020)

Beau Travail. Claire Denis. 1999. ⚅ Somebody described Denis as “the best living director today” a few years back, and that’s what it takes to get on the Official The Best list if you’re a woman. (At #91.) There are no further female directors on the list. I’ve seen this movie several times before, and … Continue reading OTB#91: Beau Travail

OTB#91: Opening Night

(January 27, 2020)

Opening Night. John Cassavetes. 1977. ⚅ Gina Rowlands! I love her. I’ve had my doubts about Cassavetes before. I mean: But this is brilliant. Everybody behaves so awfully towards the Rowlands character (including the Cassavetes character (her husband, after all) slapping her), that it starts getting… is like Cassavetes trying to say something to her? … Continue reading OTB#91: Opening Night

OTB#91: The Gold Rush

(January 25, 2020)

The Gold Rush. Charles Chaplin. 1925. ⚄ Man, this has been beautifully restored by Criterion. It’s a 2K release, and it looks super sharp. OK, some of the shots are a bit blurry, but it generally looks great. Much better than the transfers I saw back when I was a child. Because I think it’s … Continue reading OTB#91: The Gold Rush

OTB#91: The Deer Hunter

(January 25, 2020)

The Deer Hunter. Michael Cimino. 1978. ⚂ This won all the Oscars, which immediately makes me suspicious. And I have seen it before, but I was probably… twelve…? at the time (probably got it on VHS some years after the release). And I remember absolutely nothing about it except that it’s sweaty and there’s some … Continue reading OTB#91: The Deer Hunter

OTB#91: Zéro de Conduite

(January 24, 2020)

Zéro de conduite: Jeunes diables au collège. Jean Vigo. 1933. ⚃ Since there are 16 movies tying for “last place” on this top 100 (all at #91), it means that I’ve got some leeway in choosing the order of movies. So the next film alphabetically was The Deer Hunter, but that’s over three hours long!? … Continue reading OTB#91: Zéro de Conduite

OTB#91: L’argent

(January 20, 2020)

L’Argent. Robert Bresson. 1983. ⚅ I blogged about this movie here. I should probably re-watch it, but I’m not. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#91: The Killing of a Chinese Bookie

(January 20, 2020)

The Killing of a Chinese Bookie. John Cassavetes. 1976. ⚂ OK, the weirdest thing about the list of 100 best movies I’m doing is that Cassavetes has four movies on it. I mean, there’s nobody on here with more movies than Cassavetes. I wonder whether that’s an artefact of the age of the participating voting … Continue reading OTB#91: The Killing of a Chinese Bookie

OTB#91: Sans Soleil

(January 20, 2020)

Sans Soleil. Chris Marker. 1983. ⚃ The DVD of this I bought has La jetée as the main attraction, and this movie as the extra. Which makes sense, because I’ve heard of La Jetée, but I haven’t heard of this movie. Which makes me excited. I really love the central conceit of this movie: It’s … Continue reading OTB#91: Sans Soleil

OTB#91: Don’t Look Now

(January 18, 2020)

Don’t Look Now. Nicolas Roeg. 1973. ⚄ Oh, man. I have no recollection of having seen this movie, but every scene there’s a kind of primeval recognition. Could I have seen this, like, on TV as a child or something? It’s deja vu all the way for me. I must have been scared shitless while … Continue reading OTB#91: Don’t Look Now

OTB#91: Soy Cuba

(January 18, 2020)

I Am Cuba. Mikhail Kalatozov. 1964. ⚅ This is a movie I was completely unaware of, and I don’t seem to be the only one: It really is a neglected classic. It’s so weird! Movies this weird don’t usually end up on lists like these. Is it recently rediscovered or something? I’ve never seen cinematography … Continue reading OTB#91: Soy Cuba

Clownin’

(January 18, 2020)

I’ve had my servers in my employer’s data room since 1997, but (since that company doesn’t exist any more), I had to make some changes. I had planned on doing some coloc thing locally here, so I bought some semi-spiffy new servers. But then I changed my mind. It all just seemed too much work: … Continue reading Clownin’

OTB#91: L’Année dernière à Marienbad

(January 16, 2020)

L’Année dernière à Marienbad. Alain Resnais. 1961. ⚅ I’ve seen this at least a couple of times before. The last time was in 2015 according to Emacs… I regret not rebuying it on 2K. It’s such a beautiful film, and I’ve got it on a windowboxed DVD, so the resolution is like nil by nought. … Continue reading OTB#91: L’Année dernière à Marienbad

OTB#91: Le Samouraï

(January 16, 2020)

Le Samouraï. Jean-Pierre Melville. 1967. ⚃ I have apparently bought the Spanish version of this, but fortunately there’s also a French soundtrack. But no English subtitles! Subscene to the rescue! What would we do without pirates? Just watch Michael Bay movies? Oh, wow. Alain Delon. I don’t think I’ve seen any films by Melville? But … Continue reading OTB#91: Le Samouraï

Officially The Best

(January 16, 2020)

I’ve always wanted to watch all the movies on the Sight and Sound list of movies. First of all, it’s a poll taken of working directors, and that in itself makes it interesting. Secondly, the film that won was neither Citizen Kane nor Vertigo, which immediately makes it seem more relevant. I’ve jokingly referred to … Continue reading Officially The Best

B&CB: Aïoli Monstre w/ Aïoli

(January 16, 2020)

New year, new decade, new food. The previous salt cod dish from the Bistro Cooking book was delicious, so I’m all excited about this one: Lots of veggies, cod and aioli. The only thing that’s odd about this recipe is its name: Grand aioli. I mean, that’s just the sauce. So this is a two-for-one … Continue reading B&CB: Aïoli Monstre w/ Aïoli

news.gmane.org is now news.gmane.io

(January 15, 2020)

As previously discussed, the gmane.org domain was no longer viable, and the NNTP server has now moved to news.gmane.io. Likewise, mailing list subscriptions have been moved from m.gmane.org to m.gmane-mx.org. As of this writing, neither service is up, because I’m doing the final resync before restarting the services on a new server. I expect the … Continue reading news.gmane.org is now news.gmane.io

SMTP Callouts

(January 13, 2020)

After doing several rounds of mop-ups after moving all the mailing lists from gmane.org to gmane-mx.org, I was wondering whether there were any way of checking whether a mailing list is dead for sure or not (mostly to see what percentage had been ported), and… of course there isn’t. But you can use SMTP callouts … Continue reading SMTP Callouts

“Spamtraps”

(January 10, 2020)

When looking at the log on my mail server, it usually looks like this: Just and endless stream of spammers sending spam to addresses that don’t exist. I’ve often wondered why people who run MTAs don’t just band together and work out was to just ban these obviously horrible spammy monsters from the interweb totally! … Continue reading “Spamtraps”

Whatever Happened To news.gmane.org?

(January 6, 2020)

I fucked up. Short version: If you’re reading mailing lists with an NNTP news reader via news.gmane.org, you should update your news reader to point to news.gmane.io instead. Over the past few years, people have asked me what happened to Gmane, and I’ve mostly clasped my hands over my ears and gone “la la la … Continue reading Whatever Happened To news.gmane.org?

NFLX2019 Redux

(January 4, 2020)

Almost a year ago I foolishly decided to watch all “Netflix Originals” movies to see what it’s like. Here’s the tl;dr: Based on these movies, Netflix is doomed. There were some movies I enjoyed, but none I could recommend without any caveats. However, it’d be a mistake to think that these movies have that much … Continue reading NFLX2019 Redux

NFLX2019 December 31st: Ghost Stories

(January 4, 2020)

Ghost Stories. Karan Johar, Dibakar Banerjee, Zoya Akhtar and Anurag Kashyap. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Nooo! The final Netflix Original movie of 2019 is an Indian movie! Nooo!!! Not that there’s anything wrong with Indian movies. Some of my best friends are Indian movies. It was just not what I was expecting to round off the year. … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 31st: Ghost Stories

NFLX2019 December 31st: Dead Kids

(January 3, 2020)

Dead Kids. Mikhail Red. 2019. ☆☆★★★★★ Huh. A Filipino movie? That’s definitely a first in this year of Netflix Originals. It’s… a bit amateurish. The actors are pretty likeable, but take that scene in the bar where they’re arguing about going to a night club: There wasn’t anything much wrong about any single line, but … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 31st: Dead Kids

NFLX2019 December 26th: The App

(January 3, 2020)

The App. Elisa Fuksas. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Hey! It’s Italian! I think this is the first Italian Netflix Original I’ve seen in this blog series? Perhaps it’ll be wonderful! Hm… that’s a lot of mobile phone screen caps… In portrait mode… Well, that’s harsh… But what does he really mean? Well, I can see why people … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 26th: The App

The Best Albums of 2019

(January 1, 2020)

Here’s the best music of 2019, according to Emacs, which has carefully tallied what I’ve been listening to: Sam Amidon I See The Sign Meat Beat Manifesto Opaque Couche Coil Swanyard Various Third Noise Principle (Formative North American Electronica 1975-1984) Brigid Mae Power The Bones You Keep Close Lucy Roleff Left Open in a Room … Continue reading The Best Albums of 2019

December Music

(January 1, 2020)

Music I’ve bought in December. Hm… not a very exciting month for new music, apparently. But I got a bunch of old stuff that I remembered needing, like Chrome Hoof:

NFLX2019 December 24th: Como Caído del Cielo

(December 30, 2019)

Como Caído del Cielo. José Pepe Bojórquez. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ A Mexican movie? I think this is the first one I’ve seen in this blog series? So the plot is that a dead guy’s er spirit gets to take over a dying guy’s body. Hilarity should ensue, but doesn’t really. Instead they go right to the … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 24th: Como Caído del Cielo

NFLX2019 December 20th: The Two Popes

(December 30, 2019)

The Two Popes. Fernando Meirelles. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Oh, fuck. This is that Catholic propaganda movie? Gah. OK, perhaps it’s watcheable anyway? I mean, the Riefenstahl movie was pretty good. This is also one of the few Netflix movies that has gotten some attention in the media, so it’s a movie Netflix has pushed hard, I … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 20th: The Two Popes

NFLX2019 December 13th: 6 Underground

(December 30, 2019)

6 Underground. Michael Bay. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆☆ Huh! It’s that guy from Deadpool! In a plane! And now he faked crashing the plane! And now they’re in a car chase! Is this the best movie ever? And the car chase is in Italy! And now there’s guns! There’s somebody in the back seat doing surgery to … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 13th: 6 Underground

BC&B: Poulet au Vinaigre Le Petit Truc w/ Estouffade Provençale

(December 27, 2019)

The next poultry disk in the Bistro Cooking book is a chicken-in-vinegar thing, and I’m not all that fond of vinegar, so I’m slightly sceptical. But let’s see. The ingredients are simple enough: A chicken, tarragon, wine and vinegar (and some veggies). And Stargate: SG1. So to get the show started, the chicken has to … Continue reading BC&B: Poulet au Vinaigre Le Petit Truc w/ Estouffade Provençale

Visitors

(December 27, 2019)

Blinded by the neighbour’s house.

The Best Albums of the Decade

(December 13, 2019)

As a data scientist, applying machine learning to my listening patterns has led to this quantitative analysis of the albums of the decade. I can therefore reveal that these are officially the best albums released during the previous ten year period: Dani Siciliano Dani Siciliano Black Cab Games of the XXI Olympiad Anohni Hopelessness Grumbling … Continue reading The Best Albums of the Decade

NFLX2019 December 6th: Marriage Story

(December 7, 2019)

Marriage Story. Noah Baumbach. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Oh, I’ve seen reviews of this movie in all the newspapers. And it’s always that way: A Netflix movie either has no presence whatsoever in mass media or it’s absolutely everywhere. So I guess that there’s certain Netflix movies that Netflix pushes really hard, and the rest they just … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 6th: Marriage Story

NFLX2019 December 5th: A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby

(December 6, 2019)

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby. John Schultz. 2019. ☆☆★★★ Oh, this is part of a series? At least, while searching for it, there seemed to be some other movies with suspiciously similar names. And it starts with a recap. Check. Man, it just immediately seems like a super-cheap film: The early crowd scenes seems … Continue reading NFLX2019 December 5th: A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby

NFLX2019 November 28th: Holiday Rush

(December 6, 2019)

Holiday Rush. Leslie Small. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ I think we’re getting to a certain … time of year. I think Netflix has done at least half a dozen Xmas movies this year? But interestingly enough, each one seems to target a lightly different genres. Or audiences. So this is the black one. Uh-oh. OK, but these … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 28th: Holiday Rush

Stereo

(December 6, 2019)

So I’ve been futzing with my living room stereo setup lately after getting new speakers, and things look a bit too… stacked? So I thought I’d at least slim down the box the stereo is sitting on: That’s an Ikea box, and it’s too wide and too high and too deep. Inside that box is … Continue reading Stereo

NFLX2019 November 27th: The Irishman

(December 5, 2019)

The Irishman. Martin Scorsese. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ So here it is: Netflix claim to cinematic greatness. They shovelled a whole lot more money in Scorsese’s way than anybody else would have, and they got a movie (shown in actual cinemas (for a couple of weeks)) that all the newspapers in the entire world wrote think pieces … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 27th: The Irishman

NFLX2019 November 21st: The Knight Before Christmas

(December 4, 2019)

The Knight Before Christmas. Monika Mitchell. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Uh-oh. This movie starts off with that sample of an eagle er falcon that’s used everywhere. Yeah, this one: This doesn’t bode well for the budget. OK, this is very high concept: A knight from the thirteen hundreds (I think?) is magically transported to the present day. … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 21st: The Knight Before Christmas

NFLX2019 November 15th: House Arrest

(December 4, 2019)

House Arrest. Shashanka Ghosh, Samit Basu. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ I think this may be the final Indian Netflix Original of the year. They’ve been more miss than hit, so my expectations aren’t high. This one starts off really well: They’re going for a kooky, topsy-turvy aesthetic, and the actors seem charming. It’s basically a screwball comedy … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 15th: House Arrest

BC&B: Saucisson Chaud Pommes À L’Huile w/ Cake au Citron

(December 4, 2019)

It’s been a while since I French Bistroed (had a cold twice! or two different ones once! each!), but it’s time to start cooking again. The next thing in the appetiser section is … basically some sausage with some potatoes tossed in an onion/vinegar mixture. I’m quite sceptical, because it looks (once again) like it’s … Continue reading BC&B: Saucisson Chaud Pommes À L’Huile w/ Cake au Citron

November Music

(December 1, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in November. I’ve been buying all the usual nonsense this month, but I’ve particularly been delving into the output of Broklyn Beats (yes, one O), a label that was active in the early noughts. They concentrated on what some people at the time called “brokebeat”: Harsh, annoying music you can’t dance to. … Continue reading November Music

Translations are Hard

(November 29, 2019)

Yesterday I was delving into the wonderful world of crowd-sourced subtitles, and I was wondering whether TV translations are easy to do. I downloaded the Emacs/mpv-based subed mode and got started. And then stopped immediately, because the mode is really geared towards editing srt files, not writing brand-new ones. You can write new ones, but … Continue reading Translations are Hard

Some Bergman Subtitles

(November 29, 2019)

I was wondering how much work it is to do subtitles for some of the Bergman rarities I uploaded yesterday: Somebody has written a subtitling mode for Emacs, so I wondered whether that was going to be my new hobby. But then it occurred to me that there’s a gazillion of busy bees out there: … Continue reading Some Bergman Subtitles

Some Bergman Things

(November 28, 2019)

Some years back, I watched a whole bunch of things Ingmar Bergman had done. Most of his movies “proper” are available through conventional means, but a surprising number of things weren’t. (We’re talking plays like The Ghost Sonata (on one end of the video quality scale) to The School for Wives (on the other end), … Continue reading Some Bergman Things

Useful Consumer Review

(November 27, 2019)

All Emacs users, at one point or another, feel like they need a pedal to get all the keystrokes in. But now I could actually use one: I’ve got a blogging project that requires using a scanner, and triggering that with a foot would mean less bending to reach the keyboard. So I got an … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Totally Epic

(November 25, 2019)

I don’t really have time for this, but I’ve started blogging about yet another 80s comics publisher: Epic Comics. Or rather “publisher”: It’s an imprint of Marvel Comics, but was initially running as a somewhat separate entity within the Marvel offices. Don’t expect very frequent posts. Or at least not to begin with, as the … Continue reading Totally Epic

NFLX2019 November 15th: Klaus

(November 22, 2019)

Klaus. Sergio Pablos. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ This is super sweet. It’s told in a brash, irreverent tone, but it’s a very sentimental Christmas movie about Santa Claus and stuff. If you’re easily moved, it’s full of really touching scenes throughout: It’s amazing that they keep delivering these highly emotional punches time and time again. And the … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 15th: Klaus

NFLX2019 November 8th: Earthquake Bird

(November 22, 2019)

Earthquake Bird. Wash Westmoreland. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Man, this is a mess. I was totally on board thinking this was a really interesting movie, where ever shot had a deeper meaning. We were all “oh, this means she can see dead people! No, she’s a vampire! No, she’s dead!” but calm down: There’s no Shyamalaning going … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 8th: Earthquake Bird

Adding a CSS File to WordPress

(November 18, 2019)

Of all things in the world that are frustrating, Googling for how to do things in WordPress is the absolute worst. I guess I’m not used to, like, search for stuff that’s popular. Because whatever you search for related to WordPress, the top ten answers are from content farms that wants to sell you something, … Continue reading Adding a CSS File to WordPress

Emacs Supremacy

(November 13, 2019)

I use Emacs to control the stereo, so 95% of the screen is Emacs: But I like to have a clock there too, so since I started this thing (in… 1997?) I’ve also had an xwatch in the corner. The other night I decided that this was completely and utterly untenable: So I thought “it … Continue reading Emacs Supremacy

Useful Consumer Review

(November 13, 2019)

My wifi saga has been long and painful. Using a single AP, no matter how monstrous, just hasn’t worked in this flat: I’d get miserable bandwidth whenever not within two meters of the AP, and some parts of the flat got no coverage at all no matter where I put it. I guess wifi doesn’t … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

NFLX2019 November 8th: Let It Snow

(November 9, 2019)

Let It Snow. Luke Snellin. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ My prejudices immediately told me that this was going to be a horrible teen comedy thing. But it’s not! It’s a fun teen comedy thing. The actors are charming (it’s an ensemble thing) and the interlocking plots (FSVO plot) are all kinda interesting (and intersects in interesting ways) … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 8th: Let It Snow

NFLX2019 November 1st: Holiday in the Wild

(November 9, 2019)

Holiday in the Wild. Ernie Barbarash. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ This is initially just confusing, because they’re sending off somebody to college… … but which one is he? Is the one in the middle or the one on the right? Who’s playing the teenager here? (It’s the one in the middle, and he’s cast for this way-appropriate-age … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 1st: Holiday in the Wild

NFLX2019 November 1st: The Man Without Gravity

(November 9, 2019)

Hey! I’ve read that book. The Cloven Viscount? The Man Without Gravity. Marco Bonfanti. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Fourth movie of the night! Wow. An Italian movie? I think this is the first Italian Netlix Original? There’s a buttload of Indian ones, and a handful of Spanish, but other than that it’s mostly American. But no, this … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 1st: The Man Without Gravity

NFLX2019 November 1st: Drive

(November 9, 2019)

Drive. Tarun Mansukhani. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Third movie of the night: This is an Indian action movie or something? “DROVE”? As in “it drove me crazy”? The titles at the start seemed to say something about Israel? Is this an Indian/Israeli thing? And now there’s dancing! Yay! What spectacle. After the titles, I’m definitely intrigued. Oh … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 1st: Drive

NFLX2019 November 1st: The King

(November 9, 2019)

The King. David Michôd. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ OK, second movie of the night, and it’s a longer one. I guess you could term this a… post-Game of Thrones historical drama? That is, it’s “gritty”. But it does aim for more realism than Game of Thrones, I guess: The hairstyles are bad and the actors have artfully … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 1st: The King

NFLX2019 November 1st: American Son

(November 8, 2019)

American Son. Kenny Leon. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ I was already behind on mah Netflix stories, but then I got a cold and now I’m even further behind. But now I’m fine! I slept from 8 to 20 today! Can I watch all the Netflixes tonight? There’s only seven! It’s now 23, so I should be done … Continue reading NFLX2019 November 1st: American Son

BC&B: Gratin de Morue w/ Tartines de Pistou et Poisson Fumé la Boutarde

(November 2, 2019)

Is this the first fish course I made from this book? It may be, and it’s because I took a look at the first recipe in this chapter and thought “well, OK, that sounds good, but… not now.” But now is now. Or a couple of days from now, because the main ingredient here is … Continue reading BC&B: Gratin de Morue w/ Tartines de Pistou et Poisson Fumé la Boutarde

October Music

(November 1, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in October. I’ve been buying a lot of stuff this month, eh? It’s mostly along two lines in inquiry: Is everything Ze Records published in the late 70s/early 80s fun? The answer is yes, but not everything is good. But some is! The other is: There has to be more good music … Continue reading October Music

NFLX2019 October 25th: Rattlesnake

(October 26, 2019)

Rattlesnake. Zak Hilditch. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Hm! This has some similarities with that grass movie I saw the other day. I mean, driving in the boondocks… and a child… OK, it’s not a very er similar similarity. Hm… Is it Wicker Man!? I’m just fifteen minutes in so I’m just guessing here. I’m enjoying this. They’re … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 25th: Rattlesnake

NFLX2019 October 25th: Dolemite Is My Name

(October 26, 2019)

Dolemite Is My Name. Craig Brewer. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Hey? Eddie Murphy? There’s a face I haven’t seen in a while. He’s good here. Some of the famous people doing all these cameos aren’t really up to his level, but there’s other fun performances, too. Like Tituss. Anyway, it’s very entertaining. It’s a rags-to-riches story, but … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 25th: Dolemite Is My Name

BC&B: Pâtes aux Citron, Jambon, et Olives Noires le Procope w/ Quatre-Quarts aux Poires

(October 21, 2019)

I had a cold, so I’ve been fixing Emacs bugs instead of cooking, but now I’m back in the kitchen. This is the first pasta recipe I’ve done from the book? Looks annoyingly simple: It more fun to do elaborate dishes. But perhaps it’ll be delicious. Hm. That list of ingredients makes me doubtful, though. … Continue reading BC&B: Pâtes aux Citron, Jambon, et Olives Noires le Procope w/ Quatre-Quarts aux Poires

NFLX2019 October 18th: Upstarts

(October 18, 2019)

Upstarts. Udai Singh Pawar. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Indian movie. Hopefully it’s a comedy, because the serious Indian Netflix movies have been pretty dire. … Oh, darn. It’s a dramedy. I think! My initial thought was that this movie made fun up start-up culture and apps and stuff… but… perhaps it’s serious? If it’s the latter, this … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 18th: Upstarts

NFLX2019 October 18th: Eli

(October 18, 2019)

Eli. Ciarán Foy. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Whut… the titles said “Paramount” and then “MTV Movies” and then a bunch of other producers. So how is this a Netflix Original? Oh: In October 2017, Paramount Players acquired distribution rights to the film, and set it for a January 4, 2019 release. However, Netflix acquired distribution rights to … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 18th: Eli

NFLX2019 October 18th: The Laundromat

(October 18, 2019)

The Laundromat. Steven Soderbergh. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Oh, shit. This is a didactic Soderbergh movie about money? Was this one filmed on an Iphone, too? Soderbergh’s previous Netflix movie was one of the very few that I had to bail on because of pure tedium. OK, I broke down and googled. This is based on the … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 18th: The Laundromat

NFLX2019 October 18th: Seventeen

(October 18, 2019)

Diecisiete. Daniel Sánchez Arévalo. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Hey! A Spanish Netflix Original. I have hope! [30 minutes pass] I still have hope! Actually, this is a pretty spiffy film. A lot kinda rests on the face of the seventeen-year-old in question, and he kinda aces it. He veers a bit between petulant and determined, but he … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 18th: Seventeen

NFLX2019 October 12th: Street Flow

(October 17, 2019)

Street Flow. Kery James. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ The French title means… Suburbanites? I’m just guessing. I don’t know from French. But I guess that doesn’t translate to the US. “Street Flow” is kinda generic, though. It’s a quite stylish movie with good (and good-looking) actors. The plot is, however, of a pretty standard “it’s tough growing … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 12th: Street Flow

NFLX2019 October 11th: Fractured

(October 17, 2019)

Fractured. Brad Anderson. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ I’m half a minute in and I’m assuming they’re Shalamaying us. [time passes] So now I’m 15 minutes in and I’m still assuming that they’re Shyamalaning us, but even if they aren’t, the assumption is draining all fun out of the movie. Not that there’d be much fun anyway. It’s … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 11th: Fractured

NFLX2019 October 11th: The Forest of Love

(October 17, 2019)

The Forest of Love. Sion Sono. 2019. ☆★★★★★ This is such a bizarre movie. Netflix keeps is really mainstream with the movies they make (or have made) in the US, but they buy up the rights to some pretty oddball foreign movies. But none as odd as this. I don’t even know how to start … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 11th: The Forest of Love

NFLX2019 October 11th: El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie

(October 17, 2019)

El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. Vince Gilligan. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Full disclosure time: I’ve watched two episodes of Breaking Bad. I watched the first one and thought “this is Extruded New Golden Age Of Quality TV Product”: All the ticks of “seriousness” that viewers of silly TV series love these days. And I watched the … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 11th: El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie

NFLX2019 October 4th: In the Tall Grass

(October 17, 2019)

In the Tall Grass. Vincenzo Natali. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ So what’s this then? A Children of the Corn remix? Oh, it’s based on a shortish story by Stephen King. It’s about a pregnant woman and a a guy lost in … tall… grass? What is that grass anyway? Doesn’t look like papyrus? I guess it’s just … Continue reading NFLX2019 October 4th: In the Tall Grass

NFLX2019 September 27th: In the Shadow of the Moon

(October 17, 2019)

In the Shadow of the Moon. Jim Mickle. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Netlix didn’t release much over the summer, but now suddenly there’s a whole bunch of stuff! Let’s get started. Well, that’s a strange way to start a movie. With a straight-up scientific voiceover that explains the concept of the movie. (It’s telepathy.) OH!!!! The voiceover … Continue reading NFLX2019 September 27th: In the Shadow of the Moon

2×10%

(October 11, 2019)

Since this summer, I’ve er had some time on my hands, so I thought I’d work at fixing Emacs bugs. (Or closing stuff that’s no longer relevant.) And since working towards some goal is more fun, I decided that 10% of the Emacs bug tracker would be nice. There was about 4500 open bugs in … Continue reading 2×10%

BC&B: Poulet Rôti aux Herbes Pile ou Face w/ Le Cachat

(October 6, 2019)

OK; time for more food. The next selections from the Bistro Cooking book in the cheese section is this thing: It’s… uhm… Simple? It’s chevre with cottage cheese and some herbs. I did not have summer savory (because it’s autumn), so I just went with thyme. So you dump it all into a food processor … Continue reading BC&B: Poulet Rôti aux Herbes Pile ou Face w/ Le Cachat

BC&B: Daube de Boeuf Auberge de la Madone aux Cèpes et à l’Orange w/ Gâteau au Chocolat Le Mas de Chastelas

(October 5, 2019)

It’s been a while since I cooked anything for this silly blog series, but I’ve been like busy and stuff. And so I’m going to cheat and not actually read a book (this is a food/book pairing blog, I’m sure you don’t remember). So just food this time, but it’s food that takes a while … Continue reading BC&B: Daube de Boeuf Auberge de la Madone aux Cèpes et à l’Orange w/ Gâteau au Chocolat Le Mas de Chastelas

September Music

(October 2, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in September. After some months of really trying to cut down on buying music, I just kinda gave up. LET THE FLOODGATES OPEN!

BC&B: Tapenado Restaurant Maurice Brun w/ Oeufs en Meurette

(September 23, 2019)

This is a slightly unusual tapenade — it’s big and chunky and is supposed to be eaten like an appetiser. Well, I’m on board with that, because I love olives. I was unable to find olives from Nyons, so I substituted some other, less Nyonneuse olives. I wonder what makes them special… Hm… Ah, they’re … Continue reading BC&B: Tapenado Restaurant Maurice Brun w/ Oeufs en Meurette

Parsing Exif Data

(September 22, 2019)

Emacs is moving away from ImageMagick support, and is instead handling all the major image formats (PNG, JPEG, etc) natively. The reason for this is that the ImageMagick libraries have a pretty bad track record: Over the years, a large number of Emacs crashes have turned out to stem from ImageMagick crashing. While things have … Continue reading Parsing Exif Data

NFLX2019 September 20th: Between Two Ferns: The Movie

(September 21, 2019)

Between Two Ferns: The Movie. Scott Aukerman. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ *gasp* This is like the first Netflix Original in a while that isn’t “well, if you like that kind of stuff, here’s a movie that’s kinda like what you’d like to see, only not actually that movie you’d like to see”. Instead if’s a mockumentary about … Continue reading NFLX2019 September 20th: Between Two Ferns: The Movie

NFLX2019 September 13th: Tall Girl

(September 21, 2019)

Tall Girl. Nzingha Stewart. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ There haven’t been many Netflix Original movies the past few months. I’ve kinda missed watching horrible, horrible movies. This doesn’t really look that bad. It’s a high school comedy where the main concept is that it’s embarrassing to be a tall girl. I can relate. I’m tall, girl. So … Continue reading NFLX2019 September 13th: Tall Girl

My New Innovations in Packaging blog

(September 21, 2019)

While unpacking this week’s haul, I was surprised when unpacking a Laraaji album (Sun Transformations) sent to me by… … All Saints Records. It’s this intricately, but beautifully cut paper. It feels like just kinda normal paper, but since it’s been cut in this way, it replaces bubble wrap. It’s kinda magical: It’s light but … Continue reading My New Innovations in Packaging blog

BC&B: Salade Frisée aux Lardons aux Lyonnais w/ Mon Gâteau au Chocolat

(September 20, 2019)

I think I’ll do a salad tonight, because… Salads. As salads go, it’s not very saladey. I mean, the main ingredient is pork sausage. Those aren’t green. Or not supposed to be green. If you’re eating green pork sausage, you should probably reconsider. I went to a couple of stores to get endive, but couldn’t … Continue reading BC&B: Salade Frisée aux Lardons aux Lyonnais w/ Mon Gâteau au Chocolat

TSP2019: Letters from Baghdad

(September 19, 2019)

Letters from Baghdad. Sabine Krayenbühl. 2016. This is not my favourite genre: It’s a docudrama with the footage “aged” to simulate oldee tymee stock; everything played back slightly too fast to make it look like an old silent movie. But with fake sounds inserted… incessantly… it’s never silent; always a bed of foley or music. … Continue reading TSP2019: Letters from Baghdad

TSP2019: Suspiria

(September 17, 2019)

Suspiria. Luca Guadagnino. 2018. I have not seen the original Suspiria movie, but I’ve seen quite a few movies by Luca Guadagnino, and I’ve liked almost all of them. There’s so many references here… “Dr. Klemperer”… Arthur Koestler… “Berger”… Baader-Meinhof… Surely these can’t all have been in the original horror movie? Or perhaps they were? … Continue reading TSP2019: Suspiria

TSP2019: Avengers: Endgame

(September 17, 2019)

Avengers: Endgame. Anthony & Joe Russo. 2019. Hey! It’s time to catch up with Tilda Swinton again. I really enjoyed the previous Avengers movie (by the same directors as this one). The Marvel Studios movies have really gotten a whole lot better the past few years, embracing humour and sci-fi more than the first few … Continue reading TSP2019: Avengers: Endgame

BC&B: Pot-au-Feu aux Deux Viandes Chez Adrienne w/ Gratin Dauphinois Madame Laracine

(September 14, 2019)

OK, time for more bistro cooking and more books. Today I’m doing this meaty meat recipe, which looks pretty fun. It’s the most complicated recipe so far, with about seven things that have to be timed to be finished at the same time. And it’s got marrow bones, which I’ve never cooked ever, so that’s … Continue reading BC&B: Pot-au-Feu aux Deux Viandes Chez Adrienne w/ Gratin Dauphinois Madame Laracine

BC&B: Soupe à l’Oignon Pied de Cochon w/ Anchoïade Chez Gilbert

(September 11, 2019)

As you will remember from the previous chapters of this blog series (*cough* *cough*), I’m cooking my may through the Bistro Cooking book. So for dinner tonight I’m starting off with: So that’s an… anchovy… paste thing on toast, I guess? So here’s the ingredients: It’s really super-simple, once again: Basically just garlic, anchovies and … Continue reading BC&B: Soupe à l’Oignon Pied de Cochon w/ Anchoïade Chez Gilbert

Bistro Cooking and Books

(September 8, 2019)

I’ve had this cook book by Patricia Wells for decades, and have always liked the results when I’ve made something from it. Which hasn’t been often, mind you, because I’m super lazy and the recipes often start with “take 25 rabbits…” and doing the required math to get down to the sizes I’m going for … Continue reading Bistro Cooking and Books

BC&B: Poulet Rôti L’Ami Louis w/ Gratin Dauphinois Madame Cartet

(September 8, 2019)

The major problem about blogging about cooking is that this is the default state of the kitchen: I’m glad that nobody saw that picture, because there’s like no room to cook anywhere because I’m a slob. Oops! OK, that’s marginally better. So today (the first day of this blog series) I’m cooking the first poultry … Continue reading BC&B: Poulet Rôti L’Ami Louis w/ Gratin Dauphinois Madame Cartet

Entering the Clown

(September 5, 2019)

I’ve always been the self hosting kind of guy (i.e., old), but with recent changes I’m trying to simplify and move things around. I’m not quite sure where I’ll end up with my main server(s) yet, and I’m testing out various things, but for my one self-hosted WordPress instance, I thought I could try something … Continue reading Entering the Clown

Comics Cavalcade Day 12

(September 3, 2019)

Look at that pitiful selection of comics remaining! Will this be the day when I finally conquer the Window Sill Of Too Many Comics? Let’s find out, and as usual: No reviews. The Structure is Rotten, Comrade by Viken Berberian and Yann Kebbi (Fantagraphics) This is a pretty odd book. The authors seem to want … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 12

Apocalypse

(September 2, 2019)

NFLX2017 December 15, 2017: Bright

(September 2, 2019)

Bright. David Ayer. 2017. ☆☆★★★★ I started watching this and then I realised that I hadn’t seen the movie, so I thought I should do that first. Amusingly enough, when I search for “Bright” in the Netflix app, it is not among the about 50 or so hits. Apparently “Lucifer”, “Triple Frontier” and “Isn’t It … Continue reading NFLX2017 December 15, 2017: Bright

Comics Cavalcade Day 11

(September 1, 2019)

OK, the number of unread comics on the window sill has definitely decreased, so this blog series is working! And, as usual, I’ll just be reading comics and write some uninformed notes, because there’s just no time for reviews. Incomplete Works by Dylan Horrocks (Victoria University Press) This is a collection of short pieces from … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 11

August Music

(September 1, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in August. By the minuscule list below it kinda looks like I’ve finally managed to scale down the amount of music I’m buying… but it’s probably just because I went away on holidays. We’ll see!

NFLX2019 August 30th: Back to School

(August 31, 2019)

Back to School. Remy Four, Julien War. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Hey, it’s a French comedy! As is often the case with Netflix movies, it’s got a classic plot: Two nerds going to a school reunion. These things usually suck, and… it’s not that bad? There’s hi-jinx and mistaken identities and all that kind of stuff. It’s … Continue reading NFLX2019 August 30th: Back to School

NFLX2019 August 29th: Falling Inn Love

(August 31, 2019)

Falling Inn Love. Roger Kumble. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ This is a likeable easy-on-the-eyes romantic comedy thing. It’s a classic set-up: Stranger arrives in little town; lots of comedy hi-jinx fixing up an old house and romance ensues. It’s got a good, relaxed vibe going on: It’s very secure in its genre conventions, but that doesn’t get … Continue reading NFLX2019 August 29th: Falling Inn Love

Comics Cavalcade Day 10

(August 29, 2019)

The to the finish continues, and as usual, no reviews, just reading. Marble Cake by Scott Jason Smith (Avery Hills) This is such a fresh comic. It’s told via an ensemble cast that more or less all interact with one another kinda randomly, but it all builds up and connects. It’s such a well-observed piece: … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 10

Comics Cavalcade Day 9

(August 28, 2019)

OK, I got more comics, but this week I’m going to finish the Window Sill Of Comics for sure for sure and finally bring this blog series to an end. I HOPE. As usual, just reading, no reviews, because there’s just no time. Kid Gloves by Lucy Knisley (First Second) I have rather sworn off … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 9

The Continuing Story of the Balcony

(August 27, 2019)

I had a peek out on the balcony just now (it’s unseasonable warm, fortunately), and this thing was waiting for me: What on Earth? I did not plant those flowers, so once again something has started growing spontaneously. Or perhaps there’s a guerrilla balcony plant planter gang terrorising arid balconies? What is this thing, anyway? … Continue reading The Continuing Story of the Balcony

Setting up GPG for Emacs

(August 26, 2019)

I know, everybody hates GPG these days (and for good reasons), but I’ve been looking at the Emacs bug database and getting annoyed with all the SMIME etc bugs that aren’t getting fixed, and thought I should do something about it. I last used GPG in the nineties, and I’ve forgotten everything I possibly could … Continue reading Setting up GPG for Emacs

Chirp Chirp

(August 25, 2019)

I put Violin Phase by Steve Reich on, and immediately four little birds congregated on the balcony, looking pensive and confused. (The fourth is hidden behind the speaker.) Coincidence or happenstance? You be the judge.

NFLX2019 August 16th: Sextuplets

(August 25, 2019)

Sextuplets. Michael Tiddes. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Wayans namechecks Tyler Perry early on in this movie, and for good reasons: The gag here is that Wayans plays six different characters. It’s an unpretentious, silly movie, and there are jokes that work. But they don’t come along very often. Looking at imdb, apparently a large number of people … Continue reading NFLX2019 August 16th: Sextuplets

Sunday Morning Evidence

(August 25, 2019)

… of what drunks in this neighborhood drink.

Comics Cavalcade Day 8

(August 25, 2019)

What happened!? How did the Window Sill Of Unread Comics grow while I was away on holiday? Oh, right, I stopped by Comix Experience in San Francisco and bought this little stack of comics. Not to mention this bigger stack of candy. So let’s get reading: Comics Cavalcade Comix Experience Edition! And as usual, no … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 8

NFLX2019 August 2nd: Otherhood

(August 24, 2019)

Otherhood. Cindy Chupack. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ The Netflix recipe is to put a bunch of actors we like watching into a movie, and not really spending any money whatsoever on anything else, like directors or a script. But so what? Bassett, Arquette and Huffman are fun to watch. This starts off like it’s a lighthearted middle-age … Continue reading NFLX2019 August 2nd: Otherhood

NFLX2019 July 31st: The Red Sea Diving Resort

(August 23, 2019)

The Red Sea Diving Resort. Gideon Raff. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Uh-oh. “Inspired by true events”. Those are words to strike fear into any film fan. But what the fuck is this movie? It looks pretty nice… The action scenes are in shakycam, which isn’t my favourite, but the cinematographer doesn’t overdo it. We get kinda perhaps … Continue reading NFLX2019 July 31st: The Red Sea Diving Resort

NFLX2019 July 18th: Secret Obsession

(August 23, 2019)

Secret Obsession. Peter Sullivan. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Oh, Daily Dot: Secret Obsession is a soulless lump of generic mush that aspires to the cheese level of a Lifetime original joint but doesn’t come anywhere close. So this is a slasher flick? As has happened before with these Netflix movies, I’m not at all confident that this … Continue reading NFLX2019 July 18th: Secret Obsession

NFLX2019 July 12th: Point Blank

(August 23, 2019)

Point Blank. Joe Lynch. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ OK, after a couple of holidays I’m back on the Netflix Originals beat. My mission: To watch all the movies Netflix has released this year, according to the list compiled by these people. Right off the bat, this movie rubbed me the wrong way. The actors are pretty charming, … Continue reading NFLX2019 July 12th: Point Blank

THIS IS NOT A PAINT DISPOSAL SITE

(August 20, 2019)

The City and the City

(August 18, 2019)

Rent?

(August 17, 2019)

Dive

(August 17, 2019)

The Universe is a Haunted House

(August 16, 2019)

Decadence

(August 9, 2019)

So last night we went eating at the Japanese place next door to the hotel, Taikosho, and it turned out the had lots of funky, unusual stuff, like a duo of different uni on tempura: Deelish! Of the more decadent things on the menu was wagyu nigiri with caviar, and I was all “yeah, and … Continue reading Decadence

Funky Hotel

(August 8, 2019)

FF1972: The Guardsmen of Infinity Portfolio

(August 7, 2019)

The Guardsmen of Infinity Portfolio by Carter Scholz and Jim Wilson. This is the second publication from what one might call Fantagraphics’ prehistory. Publisher Groth was a teenager at the time, and I’m going to guess that everybody else involved was, too. You have to love the self confidence displayed in that introduction up there. … Continue reading FF1972: The Guardsmen of Infinity Portfolio

FF1976: Always Comes Twilight

(August 7, 2019)

Always Comes Twilight edited by Dave Dapkewicz. Concluding our look at Fantagraphics’ prehistory, here’s Always Comes Twilight, a 48 page magazine sized… thing… printed on nice thick paper. The editor explains what this thing is: It’s a fanzine, and that he’s grown out of comics fandom and will never read a comic again. Which is … Continue reading FF1976: Always Comes Twilight

FF1971: A Selection of Fictional Narratives

(August 7, 2019)

A Selection of Fictional Narratives by Dennis Fujitake. A couple of years ago I read all the floppies that Fantagraphics had published. It was a pretty random thing to do, but it turned out to be a fun little project. I used comics.org to get a list of the comics to read, and at the … Continue reading FF1971: A Selection of Fictional Narratives

Technical Analysis

(August 6, 2019)

I thought I could use my prodigious financial know-how to do an analysis of Emacs Open Bugs chart. First of all, we have clearly defined positive trend channels reaching back to 2009, broken by a period of recession. But lately, this growth has been curbed and we’ve seen a clear development of a resistance line … Continue reading Technical Analysis

Comics Cavalcade Day 7

(August 5, 2019)

These holidays keep getting in the way of me making some progress in my to-be-read shelf of comics. (I mean window sill.) That’s the point of this blog series: To finally get to Comics Queue Zero. So, as usual, just comics, no reviews, because nobody has time for that. How I Tried to Be a … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 7

July Music

(July 31, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in July. And I went to Barcelona and saw a Joe Jackson concert (great) and went to Sónar (fun). I need to buy some stuff from some of the peeps I saw there… like… er… uhm… Oh, yes! Afrodeutsche was great. Very German. (You know, like To Rococo Rot and… Pole? Yeah.) … Continue reading July Music

Comics Cavalcade Day 6

(July 29, 2019)

Eep. I got caught up in an avalanche of Emacs bug fixing, so instead of working my way through the unread comics here, I’ve been slacking off. And buying more comics! Aargh! This blog series will never end! Previous rules apply: Just reading comics, no reviewing, because nobody has time for that. Usagi Yojimbo by … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 6

A Panel From A Comic Strip Presented Without Comment

(July 29, 2019)

Your Emacs Statistics Service

(July 28, 2019)

I’ve been plugging away at the Emacs bug database the last month or so. I’m the kind of person who gets obsessed with something for a time and then I do something completely different the next month. So I’m away from Emacs developments for months on end (and this time it’s basically been a couple … Continue reading Your Emacs Statistics Service

Washed Away

(July 28, 2019)

As we saw in the previous episode of this mysterious saga, the pigeons had left the nest on my balcony, and just a few days later, I finally got my gloves and washing supplies off and started to scrub down the nesty area. The pigeons hadn’t pooped much on the chair-like object… … or indeed … Continue reading Washed Away

Empty Nest

(July 25, 2019)

As we saw in the previous episode, some pigeons had laid an egg on my balcony the day before I left for Barcelona. I saw one pigeon sitting on the egg quite happily, too. But now I’m back, and here’s what’s on the balcony now: No pigeon! No egg! Some feathers! What happened? I mean, … Continue reading Empty Nest

Greek

(July 22, 2019)

Festival

(July 20, 2019)

Estrella

(July 19, 2019)

Crispy Mini Taco With Tuna

(July 18, 2019)

Lodgers

(July 15, 2019)

For some days now, while I’ve been on the couch, programming, this guy has been sitting pensively on the balcony: Not really doing anything, other than looking at me once a while: Hi there! I didn’t really think much about it, and everything looked normal out on the balcony (which I haven’t used this summer). … Continue reading Lodgers

End of an Ear

(July 11, 2019)

Hey, I forgot to mention that last week was my final day at the job I’d been at for… 22? years, but I’ve now assembled a souvenir from the library I put together while I was there: So I’m no longer a bankster, and I have to figure out what I’m going to do when … Continue reading End of an Ear

Comics Cavalcade Day 5

(July 9, 2019)

OK, got a really late start today, so this’ll be a short one. But just comics; no reviews, as usual, because busy busy. Heat by Jean Wei (Peow) This sounds like a high concept comic (a fire demon comes to live on a farm), but it’s really sweet. It’s got a quiet ruminative feel. Unfortunately … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 5

Comics Cavalcade Day 4½

(July 9, 2019)

I thought I was going to be busy all day today, but apparently not, so let’s do a half day of comics. As usual, the rules are: No reviewing, because we do not have time for that. Soda 12 by Gazzotti and Tome (Zoom) This is a “modern” (i.e., isn’t from the 50s) French-ish series … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 4½

Crimson

(July 5, 2019)

I’m not a King Crimson fanatic, but I really love the three albums with Adrian Belew from the early 80s (the ones all Crimson fans hate). And it turns out that Fripp is re-releasing the entire oeuvre in a ridiculously lavish fashion. It’s like 20 discs per “era”. It’s ludicrous! I love it! So I … Continue reading Crimson

Comics Cavalcade Day 4

(July 3, 2019)

The cache of unread comics has shrunk considerably! So let’s get reading, and as usual: No reviewing. Fashion Forecasts by Yumi Sakugawa (Retrofit/Big Planet) So this booklet is based on an Insta thing? Hey, this is amazing. Not only is it funny, but the artwork’s so appealing. Love the colours. It would have been nice … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 4

Comics Cavalcade Day… 3?

(July 2, 2019)

The was an unplanned service interrupting in this blog series yesterday (OK, I went to a garden centre and bought a rose bushlet that I then had to plant and etc), but I’m now back to reading comics all day long. And as before: No reviews, because ain’t nobody got time for that. War of … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day… 3?

Not Grass

(July 1, 2019)

I had planned on spending all day today reading comics, but I found myself at a garden centre and I bought a rosebushlet, so I thought it was time for me to get weeding the balcony instead (and get the furniture out of storage). And then it started raining immediately, of course. *sigh* The ivy … Continue reading Not Grass

June Music

(June 30, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in June.

Comics Cavalcade Day 2

(June 30, 2019)

It’s day two of the comics reading marathon, and today I hope to put in more hours than yesterday. The rules are the same, though: No reviewing. Nocturne by Tara Booth (2d cloud) This is amazing! It’s a hilarious but simultaneously moving look at an encounter gone wrong and the aftermath. Booth’s artwork is so … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 2

Comics Cavalcade Day 1

(June 29, 2019)

I love comics. I mean, as a medium: Most comics suck, but when the comics are good, they’re better than anything. They connect to something in my brain like nothing else. To this day, my most intense dreams are of me stumbling into an unknown back room or cellar of a well-known comics store and … Continue reading Comics Cavalcade Day 1

Grass

(June 28, 2019)

I haven’t been weeding the balcony this year (June has been cold). So I went out to the balcony for the first time this year and this was what’s out there: What is that? Grass? It’s a mighty substantial grass. Is that… some kind of grain? Wheat? Rye? Barley? Am I a farmer for real … Continue reading Grass

NFLX2019 June 19th: Beats

(June 21, 2019)

Beats. Brian Welsh. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ I thought this was going to be the usual rags to rap riches story, but instead it’s an unusual rags to rap riches story. It’s got PTSD and mental illness and stuff. It turns out that everything needed to get well is some hard truths from an older man. The … Continue reading NFLX2019 June 19th: Beats

Towards a Cleaner Emacs Build

(June 20, 2019)

I’m planning on getting back into Emacs development after being mostly absent for a couple of years. One thing that’s long annoyed me when tinkering with the Lisp bits of Emacs is the huge number of compilation warnings. The C parts of Emacs were fixed up at least a decade ago, but this is what … Continue reading Towards a Cleaner Emacs Build

NFLX2019 June 14th: Murder Mystery

(June 14, 2019)

Murder Mystery. Kyle Newacheck. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Oh deer. Adam Sandler. Jennifer Aniston. And the director has a long an undistinguished career in television. But, you know, Netflix is TV, so… I assumed that this was going to completely horrendous, but it’s actually not that bad. The concept here is that Aniston and Sandler are working … Continue reading NFLX2019 June 14th: Murder Mystery

NFLX2019 June 7th: Elisa & Marcela

(June 14, 2019)

Elisa & Marcela. Isabel Coixet. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Another Spanish Netflix Original? Sure, I’m game. And it’s in black and white? Great. But… it looks kinda like an odd black and white? It’s looks a bit washed out… as if it was done on colour video and then they just dropped all the colour? I don’t … Continue reading NFLX2019 June 7th: Elisa & Marcela

Fame!

(June 12, 2019)

New York Times, patch.

Ununicode

(June 5, 2019)

I’ve been messing around to see whether running a WordPress installation is fun or not (spoilers: it’s really not), and all of a sudden my test blog articles had turned a strange shade of non-UTF-8. For instance, some texts I had quoted used that strange apostrophe in “it’s”, and that had turned into “it’s”. Now, … Continue reading Ununicode

May Music

(June 1, 2019)

Music I’ve bought in May. After restraining my music buying impulses for a very, very long time (a month or two?), I broke down in May and went on several shopping sprees. In particular, I’ve been buying Joe Jackson live albums and singles and stuff. I grew up with Beat Crazy, that wild and weird … Continue reading May Music

NFLX2019 May 30th: Chopsticks

(May 31, 2019)

Chopsticks. Sachin Yardi. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Hey, yet another Indian movie… They have been of more variable quality than the American movies (which are mostly er not very good), so perhaps this’ll be good? It’s a comedy, at least. This is mainly a Hindi-speaking film (I think?), but when they speak English (as all Indians seem … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 30th: Chopsticks

NFLX2019 May 31st: Always Be My Maybe

(May 31, 2019)

Always Be My Maybe. Nahnatchka Khan. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Hey, this looks cute. It’s about two friends growing up? Wow, that’s a weird song choice. Young Americans (by David Bowie) in a horrible cover version? Didn’t want to pay for the rights or would it be too obvious that that’s a horrible choice of a song … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 31st: Always Be My Maybe

Eclipse to Pacific

(May 26, 2019)

Last summer, I did a little separate blog on Eclipse Comics, and nine months after I wrote the last blog article “proper” for the blog, I finally got the documents about the Toren Smith vs. Eclipse Enterprises court case. So now that that blog is over for reals, I thought it might be fun to … Continue reading Eclipse to Pacific

NFLX2019 May 24th: Rim of the World

(May 25, 2019)

Rim of the World. McG. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ It’s a sci-fi movie by the guy who produces Supernatural? Sure, I’m in. Oh, it’s a movie for children. Oh, well. Hey, it’s kinda amusing. Lots of kooky characters; some great lines. Heh heh. I laughed out loud in real life loudly. This is funny! As with Malibu … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 24th: Rim of the World

NFLX2019 May 24th: The Perfection

(May 25, 2019)

The Perfection. Richard Shepard. 2018. ☆☆☆☆☆★ I’m not sure in what sense this is a “Netflix Original”. It’s a Miramax movie released in 2018… but then Netflix bought the exclusive distribution rights? Or something? OK, I’m hiding the rest of the text because if you want to watch this movie, you should be un-spoilered. Click … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 24th: The Perfection

NFLX2019 May 17th: See You Yesterday

(May 25, 2019)

See You Yesterday. Stefon Bristol. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ What’s this then? From the name it sounds like a science fiction movie… but it’s produced by Spile Lee? Is that what he does these days? I kinda lost track of him in the 90s after a couple of kinda boring movies he did after the initial burst … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 17th: See You Yesterday

NFLX2019 May 16th: Good Sam

(May 25, 2019)

Good Sam. Kate Melville. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Watching Netflix Originals in this way, one by one based on release date but knowing nothing about them, I find myself playing the What Genre Is Netflix Making A Generic Movie In Now? game. This is about a scrappy TV reporter? It’s very efficient: In the second scene, the … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 16th: Good Sam

NFLX2019 May 13th: Malibu Rescue

(May 24, 2019)

Malibu Rescue. . 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ So what’s this then? Is this a children’s movie… or is it at parody of a children’s movie? OK, I’ve watched now for ten minutes and I still can’t tell. Perhaps it doesn’t matter? It’s weird as fuck anyway. The actors are really fun. Everything is somewhat over the top, … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 13th: Malibu Rescue

NFLX2019 May 10th: Wine Country

(May 24, 2019)

Wine Country. Amy Poehler. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ Oh wow. Amy Poehler, Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph, Tina Fey, Jason Schwartzman… Oh! And Poehler directed this! From the name, I supposed that this would be a Netflix rip-off of that Pinot Noir movie that was all the rage a while back, but this looks more like a parody … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 10th: Wine Country

NFLX2019 May 3rd: The Last Summer

(May 24, 2019)

The Last Summer. William Bindley. 2019. ☆★★★★★ So… this is one of those teen dramedies about a pre-nostalgic “last summer”. There are jocks, there are nerds, there are Heathers. It’s such a generic throwback of a movie. I can’t decide whether the filmmakers are totally inept or they’re taking brave artistic choices: Everything is washed-out … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 3rd: The Last Summer

NFLX2019 May 3rd: Despite Everything

(May 24, 2019)

Despite Everything. Gabriela Tagliavini. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ I went on a holiday for ten days, and then I had a cold for a week, so I’m way behind on my Netflixes. I seem to have eight movies to catch up with… Well, that’s doable this weekend. Let’s get started. Hm… Oh, this is a Spanish movie? … Continue reading NFLX2019 May 3rd: Despite Everything

It’s a Sign

(May 14, 2019)

Caution

(May 13, 2019)

It’s a Bargain!

(May 13, 2019)

A Siegfried-Free Night

(May 9, 2019)

But instead there was Ikue Mori, Arto Linsay (i.e., two thirds of DNA) and YoshimiO (or Boredoms etc fame). It was fabulous and very funny. Xxx.

Wrong Aspect Radio

(May 8, 2019)

If Only It Had Been Twenty-Three Years

(May 7, 2019)

Police Enforced

(May 6, 2019)

CCCB: Ulysses

(May 2, 2019)

This is the last entry in this blog series (where I read an old unread book and bake something, because that’s a thing), and I wanted to bake something non-sweet for a change. But not bread. After considering a lot of things that straddle the baked goods/dinner continuum it all of a sudden occurred to … Continue reading CCCB: Ulysses

New Music

(April 30, 2019)

Music I’ve bought this month. I finally managed to stop buying so many albums!  On the other hand, I changed the posting date from the 12th to the 1st, there’s just 18 days in this month.

Colon Files: rsync-tr

(April 24, 2019)

I was copying over some music to my phone (via jmtpfs and rsync), and I noticed that some of the files failed with “Input/output error”: After a while it dawned on me what all these files had in common was that there’s a colon in the file names. And presumably the MicroSD card in the … Continue reading Colon Files: rsync-tr

Today’s Topical Peanuts Strip

(April 22, 2019)

wordpress.com is annoying

(April 21, 2019)

I’ve got some blogs hosted on wordpress.com, and when I looked at the stats for one of them today, this thing popped up: Wha… My blog isn’t “set up” unless I signed up for some weird Google product? When I click on that link I get this: There’s no way to say “I don’t fucking … Continue reading wordpress.com is annoying

unsilence

(April 20, 2019)

Hidden tracks on CDs used to be a pretty common thing. Not “real” hidden tracks: You could play tricks with the directory structure and put a track before the first one, so you have to skip back from 1 to get to 0. No, the common way to do this is to pad the final … Continue reading unsilence

NFLX2019 April 19th: Music Teacher

(April 19, 2019)

Music Teacher. Sarthak Dasgupta. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ I’ve been following the “drama” and “comedy” lists here and thinking that I was getting all the Netflix Originals. But then I noticed that I wasn’t getting “The Silence”, which I thought was a Netflix Original. It turns out that it’s on this list instead, which is a list … Continue reading NFLX2019 April 19th: Music Teacher

NFLX2019 April 19th: Someone Great

(April 19, 2019)

Someone Great. Jennifer Kaytin Robinson. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ I’m like totes caught up with the Netflix (this movie was released today), so I’m watching other movies on the side. But since they’re not really uh conceptual? then I’m not blogging about them, for which everybody’s happy, I guessing. But I’ve discovered over the years that it’s … Continue reading NFLX2019 April 19th: Someone Great

A Panel From A Comic Strip Presented Without Comment

(April 15, 2019)

NFLX2019 April 12th: The Perfect Date

(April 12, 2019)

The Perfect Date. Chris Nelson. 2019. ☆☆☆☆★★ I think imdb says it perfectly: i think this in one of the many netflix-production that will place itself in the basket of inrecognition, unless you like social network-work, and the freshnes of new juicy fruits entering the silver screen with beauty and galore . i think the … Continue reading NFLX2019 April 12th: The Perfect Date

NFLX2019 April 12th: Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?

(April 12, 2019)

Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?. Jota Linares. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ A Spanish Netflix movie! I am exite! But… well, there’s good bits. They’ve gone for a very low-makeup look for the actors (you can see every pore), and the actors are pretty good. Especially the women. But it’s difficult to get into this … Continue reading NFLX2019 April 12th: Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?

New Music

(April 11, 2019)

Music I’ve bought this month. My plan to cut down on buying new music to give me more of a chance to actually listen to what I’m buying is showing results! Plot twist: I haven’t listened to any of these albums — I’m still trying to catch up with the stuff I’ve bought earlier. *sigh*

CCCB: The Fall of Hyperion

(April 11, 2019)

I’ve done too many almond-based goods, so I thought I’d try my hand on some profiteroles with this recipe. Approx. Because I didn’t really want the chocolate part. Most of the recipes stress how “simple” this recipe is… but it has the normal number of ingredients. What’s simple, perhaps, is that it uses something as … Continue reading CCCB: The Fall of Hyperion

Keith Giffen / K. K. Kitten

(April 7, 2019)

I finally read the second volume in IDW/Eurocomics brilliant reprinting of the Sinner series by José Muñoz and Carlos Sampayo. It was was published about a year ago, but I somehow missed it. One of the shorter pieces in the book, Over Some Drawings, seems to call out for more attention than it got. I … Continue reading Keith Giffen / K. K. Kitten

NFLX2019 April 5th: Unicorn Store

(April 5, 2019)

Unicorn Store. Brie Larson. 2017. ☆☆☆★★★ Huh. Brie Larson? But she’s Captain Marvel? Two movies released at the same time? Errr: It screened in the Special Presentations section at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival. It was released on April 5, 2019, by Netflix. So it’s two years old, but now suddenly it’s a “Netflix … Continue reading NFLX2019 April 5th: Unicorn Store

NFLX2019 March 29th: The Highwaymen

(April 5, 2019)

The Highwaymen. John Lee Hancock. 2019. ☆★★★★★ Does it say anything about our times that Netflix found it attractive to make a movie about Bonnie & Clyde where the heroes are the men who hunt them down? Or is it just the result of a random walk performed by the Netflix movie generator script? I’m … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 29th: The Highwaymen

NFLX2019 March 29th: 15 August

(April 5, 2019)

15 August. Swapnaneel Jaykar. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Hey! Another Indian movie. Netflix are really going after the Indian market? The other (three?) Indian movies so far this year haven’t all bin good, but they have a better track record than the American Netflix movies, so I’m excited. One slight puzzling thing about the Indian Netflix movies … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 29th: 15 August

CCCB: Marya: A Life

(April 4, 2019)

Last week I did croissants to indifferent results, so why not try something that has almost as bad reputation for being tricky: Macarons. And then I found this recipe for liquorice macarons. Yes! But then I started to study it, and it seems kinda odd. I mean 2 cups of chocolate chips for the filling? … Continue reading CCCB: Marya: A Life

4AD 1999

(April 2, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1999 on Spotify. This is the end! Not of 4AD, but this blog series, and more importantly, an era: Ivo Watts-Russell sold 4AD to Beggars Banquet. So what did he do as the final year as the label boss? Release a buttload of Gus Gus things, and a smattering of “best of” … Continue reading 4AD 1999

NFLX2019 March 22nd: The Dirt

(March 30, 2019)

The Dirt. Jeff Tremaine. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ This doesn’t start off well, but once it gets going there’s one funny scene after another. It’s not even the most OUTRAGEOUS scenes that are funniest — there’s like the scene where they dump the blond guitarist. Ramsay Bolton totally deadpans his way through it, and that drummer guy … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 22nd: The Dirt

NFLX2019 March 13th: Triple Frontier

(March 30, 2019)

Triple Frontier. J.C. Chandor. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Oh deer. You’ve seen this movie a gazillion times before: Cool military guys doing cool military things with a roaming, restless camera (steadycam and helicopter footage). Every single shot is a cliché and there’s metal music to underscore how cool it all is. I mean: War is hell. That’s … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 13th: Triple Frontier

NFLX2019 March 8th: Juanita

(March 30, 2019)

Juanita. Clark Johnson. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Oh, I haven’t bitched about the Netflix UX yet, have I? Let the rant commence: I loathe it. I go to the Netflix app and it says DOUUUNNG as loud as possible. Then I start thinking about what I’m going to watch and it starts auto-playing, with full sound, whatever … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 8th: Juanita

NFLX2019 March 8th: Walk. Ride. Rodeo.

(March 29, 2019)

Walk. Ride. Rodeo.. Conor Allyn. 2019. ☆★★★★★ Oh deer. This is based on a true story? At the start here I thought this was a quite funny parody… but then… I slowly realised… that it’s a real Based On A Real Story movie. I don’t like to use hate speech so I’ve avoided using this … Continue reading NFLX2019 March 8th: Walk. Ride. Rodeo.

NFLX2019 February 22nd: Paddleton

(March 29, 2019)

Paddleton. Alex Lehmann. 2019. ☆☆☆★★★ Uhm. Ray Romano. He’s, like, somebody I don’t like a lot. I didn’t even recognise him before I read imdb. Well, to be honest, I still don’t recognise him after reading imdb. This is a movie extruded to satisfy the urges of the same audience as this? It’s even got … Continue reading NFLX2019 February 22nd: Paddleton

NFLX2019 February 22nd: Paris Is Us

(March 29, 2019)

Paris Is Us. Elisabeth Vogler. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆☆ I was totally wrong about how many Netflix Originals have been released this year: I had somehow counted 30, but there’s only 14. Which means that I’ll probably get caught up this weekend?! Have Netflix cut back? If they continue at this pace, there’ll be vaguely more than … Continue reading NFLX2019 February 22nd: Paris Is Us

CCCB: The Edible Woman/Surfacing/Lady Oracle

(March 28, 2019)

If there’s one thing an amateur cook shouldn’t attempt (and there’s nobody more amateur than me), it’s croissants, apparently. So I wanted to give it a try. It’s 3x more futzy than any other recipe I’ve attempted. It’s not that any single step is particularly daunting, but there’s just so many of them with hours … Continue reading CCCB: The Edible Woman/Surfacing/Lady Oracle

4AD 1998

(March 26, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1998 on Spotify. I asked last week whether 4AD would even release anything good again, and here we are in 1998 and the answer is… Yes! There’s Kristin Hersh’ new album, and His Name Is Alive make a comeback of sorts with Ft. Lake. And then, uh, and then… uh… Well, there’s … Continue reading 4AD 1998

Spirou

(March 24, 2019)

A while back, I launched an in-depth investigation into a claim that French(ey) comics used to be serialised half a page at a time. Somebody on the internet was clearly wrong (because not even French children are that patient). As I had never myself seen these anthologies, I had to resort to Google for the … Continue reading Spirou

NFLX2019 February 22nd: Firebrand

(March 24, 2019)

Awesome beard. Firebrand. Aruna Raje. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ I never thought I’d say these words but: *phew* Finally it’s another Indian movie! This is a somewhat strange movie. It combines the aesthetics of a lighthearted drama with a rather distressing storyline about PTSD after rape. This is a movie that seems to have avoided attention by … Continue reading NFLX2019 February 22nd: Firebrand

NFLX2019 February 8th: High Flying Bird

(March 24, 2019)

High Flying Bird. Steven Soderbergh. 2019. ☆★★★★★ Everybody loved Steven Soderbergh after Sex, Lies, and Videotape, but then the rest of his movies happened. I mean, he’s got a bunch of blockbusters with the Oceans * movies (haven’t seen them), but he’s also done more ambitious movies, like his Solaris remake (I’ve seen it, but … Continue reading NFLX2019 February 8th: High Flying Bird

NFLX2019 February 1st: Velvet Buzzsaw

(March 23, 2019)

Velvet Buzzsaw. Dan Gilroy. 2019. ☆☆★★★★ Once again, this movie seems so calculated. It’s like they put random attractive movie traits (Gyllenaal as totally gay; the art scene; horror) through a blender and came up with this without anybody wanting to make this specific movie. That doesn’t mean that this is horrible: Any scene is … Continue reading NFLX2019 February 1st: Velvet Buzzsaw

NFLX2019 January 25th: Polar

(March 23, 2019)

Polar. Jonas Åkerlund. 2019. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Oh. Jonas Åkerlund? Did he just do the film about black metal Lords of Chaos? Hm… I see; that one was made a couple of years ago but not really released until now. Anyway, I’m expecting something stylish with an excessive amount of violence, so I’ve got my pillow ready. … Continue reading NFLX2019 January 25th: Polar

NFLX2019 January 18th: Soni

(March 22, 2019)

Soni. Ivan Ayr. 2018. ☆☆☆☆☆★ Great! After two horrible American Netflix Originals, this is an Indian movie picked up for distribution by Netflix, so its script presumably hasn’t been auto-generated by an Eliza bot. This movie reminds me a bit of 70s hyper-realist movies like Jeanne Dielman. 23, quai du Commerce. 1080 Bruxelles. I mean, … Continue reading NFLX2019 January 18th: Soni

NFLX2019 January 18th: IO

(March 22, 2019)

Futura! Brave choice! This guy eats a tomato for the first time in forever and has a foodgasm, which reminds me of this Sheri Tepper novel I read many years ago: It’s set in a future where there is no nature, and on a game show, a family wins the right to eat the very … Continue reading NFLX2019 January 18th: IO

NFLX2019 January 11th: The Last Laugh

(March 22, 2019)

The Last Laugh. Greg Pritikin. 2019. ☆★★★★★ OK, this one is HDR for some reason… why not… By Emacs! This is a horrible movie. Let me sum up the plot: Chevy Chase and Richard Dreyfuss are old. That’s it. The (I hesitate to call it that) cinematography is violently pedestrian. The jokes are… there… The … Continue reading NFLX2019 January 11th: The Last Laugh

NFLX2019 January 4th: Lionheart

(March 22, 2019)

Lionheart. Genevieve Nnaji. 2018. ☆☆☆☆★★ OK, we’re off on The Journey Into Netflix Originals. This is the first thing I’ve actually watched on this setup: I’ve only done debugging, so far, and of course problems are showing up, so my concentration on this film is far from 100%. I’ve got the Apple TV set to … Continue reading NFLX2019 January 4th: Lionheart

NFLX2019

(March 22, 2019)

I’ve recently been watching mostly old movies, so I thought it was about time for a complete turn-around: What’s going on in movies today? And the freshest movies available (outside movie theatres) are on Netflix: In particular the “Netflix Originals”. Some of these have a brief limited theatrical release, but arrive on the screens pretty … Continue reading NFLX2019

CCCB: The Ticket That Exploded

(March 21, 2019)

For this week’s cake I’m making something called “tropical aroma”. I know you’re thinking “pineapple and mango?” now, but this is an old-school chocolate cake, and the tropical ingredients are cinnamon, nutmeg and coffee. And possibly the chocolate. That’s tropical too, right? I’m not a coffee drinker (I guzzle tea by the gallons), but I … Continue reading CCCB: The Ticket That Exploded

4AD 1997

(March 18, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1997 on Spotify. Listening to 4AD in 1997 is obviously listening to a label shutting down. There are no new artists, but instead there’s the first of many pilferings to come of one of 4AD’s most commercially successful bands of the 90s, Pixies. And there’s a concerted effort to make Tanya Donelly’s … Continue reading 4AD 1997

AWOB18: Hellraiser: Judgment

(March 16, 2019)

Hellraiser: Judgment. Gary J. Tunnicliffe. 2018. ☆★★★★ This is another Hellraiser sequel made for pure reasons: Several years later, Dimension Films was required to make another Hellraiser film to retain their rights to the series, giving Tunnicliffe a chance to propose his vision to the studio. Well… it’s… inventive… I guess the idea is to … Continue reading AWOB18: Hellraiser: Judgment

AWOB11: Hellraiser: Revelations

(March 16, 2019)

Hellraiser: Revelations. Víctor García. 2011. ☆☆☆★★★ The impetus for some of the previous Hellraiser movies is sometimes obscure, but this one is straightforward: The film was produced in a matter of weeks, due to an obligation on Dimension Films’ part to release another Hellraiser film or risk losing the rights to the film series. Due … Continue reading AWOB11: Hellraiser: Revelations

AWOB05: Hellraiser: Hellworld

(March 16, 2019)

Hellraiser: Hellworld. Rick Bota. 2005. ☆☆☆★★★ This is the third and final Hellraiser movie directed by Rick Bota, and this time he’s got somebody vaguely famous to play the lead: Lance Henriksen. And according to imdb, it had a generous $5M budget, so it’s pretty flush in a Hellraiser context. And, yet again, it’s based … Continue reading AWOB05: Hellraiser: Hellworld

AWOB05: Hellraiser: Deader

(March 15, 2019)

Hellraiser: Deader. Rick Bota. 2005. ☆☆★★★★ This is the second in a trio of movies made by Rick Bota/Tim Day/Carl Dupre/Ron Schmidt (and people) as director/writer/producer combos. Weirdly enough, it’s the only one that’s only available on DVD, while the first and third movies are on bluray. What’s up with that? Oh, Weinstein Bros: Like … Continue reading AWOB05: Hellraiser: Deader

AWOB02: Hellraiser: Hellseeker

(March 15, 2019)

Hellraiser: Hellseeker. Rick Bota. 2002. ☆☆☆★★★ Hey! Ashley Laurence, who was in the first two movies, is back! As with the previous movie, this apparently originated in a script Dimension Films had in storage that they altered to add some Hellraiser characters. (The Weinsteins are always so thrifty.) This horror movie feels refreshingly old-fashioned. I … Continue reading AWOB02: Hellraiser: Hellseeker

AWOB00: Hellraiser: Inferno

(March 15, 2019)

Hellraiser: Inferno. Scott Derrickson. 2000. ☆☆★★★★ Heh:: Like Hellraiser: Hellseeker (2002) after it, “Inferno” was originally a non-Hellraiser related horror script owned by Dimension. To save money on writing a completely original Hellraiser story, the script was quickly edited to insert the Pinhead and the Cenobites. Well, that’s promising! Now I’m picturing a production company … Continue reading AWOB00: Hellraiser: Inferno

AWOB96: Hellraiser Bloodline

(March 15, 2019)

Hellraiser Bloodline. Kevin Yagher. 1996. ☆☆☆★★★ Pinhead… In… Spaaaaaaace. This is the final Hellraiser movie that got a theatrical release. And:: [It’s] the last [film of the franchise] to develop [its] story around the original premise rather than simply tacking Hellraiser elements onto a pre-existing script. As such it’s one which, for all its problems, … Continue reading AWOB96: Hellraiser Bloodline

AWOB92: Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth

(March 14, 2019)

Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth. Anthony Hickox. 1992. ☆☆★★★★ After two movies that have a quite homey feel to them, this seems more… professional. I’m guessing it was made in the US? It has that American feel to it. Grips and best boys that are in the union. The first two Hellraiser movies may not … Continue reading AWOB92: Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth

AWOB88: Hellbound: Hellraiser II

(March 14, 2019)

Hellbound: Hellraiser II. Tony Randel. 1988. ☆☆☆☆★★ Well, that’s an odd way to start a sequel: We get a very… intense… recap of the first movie! Before the titles! All the famous one-liners and excerpts from the most gruesome scenes. I don’t think I’ve seen it done that blatantly before. And then we’re off: Several … Continue reading AWOB88: Hellbound: Hellraiser II

AWOB87: Hellraiser

(March 14, 2019)

Hellraiser. Clive Barker. 1987. ☆☆☆☆★★ This is pretty scary right from the get go. It’s an original way to introduce the audience to the horrors, too: Give us glimpses of the fantastic, and drench it in blood. Barker is of the Carpenter school of horror movies: Show it all; don’t hint at it. And then … Continue reading AWOB87: Hellraiser

A Weekend of Blood

(March 14, 2019)

Last year, I re-read a bunch of 80s comics published by Eclipse Comics, and among these were a a bunch of adaptations of Clive Barker short stories as well as a couple of fannish books about him. I quite enjoyed reading his Books of Blood at the time: They were something new and fresh in … Continue reading A Weekend of Blood

CCCB: Magic Hour

(March 14, 2019)

I’ve never made a pie before, which isn’t surprising, I guess, because I’ve basically never baked in my life before starting this blog series. So I was just thinking about what to make, and the words Lemon Meringue Pie just popped into my head. So I’m going to make that, even though I’ve never tasted … Continue reading CCCB: Magic Hour

New Music

(March 12, 2019)

Music I’ve bought this month. Last month I declared that I was going to cut back radically on how much music I’m buying (because I can’t listen to all this stuff), so this month I’m down to… er… thirtyseven releases… OK, quite a bit of that was albums trickling in that I’d ordered earlier, so … Continue reading New Music

4AD 1996

(March 12, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1996 on Spotify. Let’s focus on the positives: Dead Can Dance returned with Spiritchaser, and that’s a quite good album. Throwing Muses continued the streak begun with University and released another excellent album. His Name Is Alive went in a new direction: They discovered the Beach Boys. Heidi Berry released her final, … Continue reading 4AD 1996

Useful Consumer Review

(March 11, 2019)

I’m always in the lookout for new smart remotes, so when I saw this Turn Touch wooden thing, I thought it might go better with my living room table: Than the old remote I use to control the stereo (and the lights): Eh? Eh? Slightly better, huh? That Targus thing there has worked reliably for … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Decade Redux

(March 10, 2019)

After watching movies kinda aimlessly for a while, I wanted to focus on a specific era, so I chose the 40s: One movie from every month of that decade. I chose the 40s more by process of elimination than anything else: All the other possible decades had bits that seemed less exciting here and there. … Continue reading Decade Redux

December 1949: Twelve O’Clock High

(March 9, 2019)

Awrite! The final movie in this blog series! December 1949! A decade of movies! It’s over! I think I started in… September? So it’s taken me about six months to watch 120 movies? That’s two thirds of a movie per day. OK, I’ll do a summing-up post later… So what’s this movie about? A high … Continue reading December 1949: Twelve O’Clock High

November 1949: Port of New York

(March 9, 2019)

Huh. This… looks like a B movie sourced from Youtube from VHS, but how did I buy this? It must be on a box set of some kind, but … which one? I sure can’t find it. And it’s weird. It’s got a voiceover like an educational short. I’m guessing this is a public domain … Continue reading November 1949: Port of New York

October 1949: Love Happy

(March 9, 2019)

What! A Marx Brothers movie!? I thought I’d seen them all? How did I miss this one? It must have been part of that Marx Bros box set I bought some years back? But… huh. This is not one of the classic Marx movies. There’s not a lot of Groucho in here (and his scenes … Continue reading October 1949: Love Happy

September 1949: The Fighting Kentuckian

(March 9, 2019)

Hey, John Wayne. Oh, and er Laurel? I mean Hardy. Or do I? This is a romantic western comedy, I guess. Wayne is a polarising actor, but I really like having him on the screen. He’s fun to watch. This is very, very slight fare. It’s charming and easy on the headbone. But perhaps it … Continue reading September 1949: The Fighting Kentuckian

August 1949: I Was A Male War Bride

(March 8, 2019)

Howard Hawks! Cary Grant! Ann Sheridan! And this is the first post-war war movie I’ve seen in this blog series, I think? Oh… it’s not really a war movie. It’s a post-war movie, set in present-day (i.e., 1949) Germany. This is a screwball comedy of sorts: Lots of pratfalls for Grant to excel at. But … Continue reading August 1949: I Was A Male War Bride

CCCB: Woman on the Edge of Time

(March 7, 2019)

Thursday is baking day, and I chose a cake I haven’t tasted in decades: The Tosca Cake. It’s apparently named after that most jumpingest of all opera heroines. Perhaps it’s named after her because it’s a pretty heavy cake and Tosca fell like a rock into the river? The comment on that page, however, claims … Continue reading CCCB: Woman on the Edge of Time

Working with X in Emacs

(March 5, 2019)

While tweaking the Emacs-based screensaver, it began to become clear that I just didn’t have access to a sufficient number of X events. In particular, I want to be able to wake the screen up by hitting the shift key, and I just could see any way to get at that event. So I asked … Continue reading Working with X in Emacs

4AD 1995

(March 5, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1995 on Spotify. I think perhaps it makes sense to regard 1995 as the end of the iconic, classic version of 4AD. 4AD’s ends their association with The Wolfgang Press here, and that’s a group of people that had been with them (in various permutations) since 1980: The very first “proper” 4AD … Continue reading 4AD 1995

July 1949: Too Late For Tears

(March 2, 2019)

Based on the title I thought this was gonna be a Douglas Sirk weepie. But instead it’s a very noir film noir! This movie started off simply fabulous. Ly. Great random set-up and perfect noir performances. But things get more involved and the actors start chewing the scenery and instead of ever-increasing tension, we just … Continue reading July 1949: Too Late For Tears

June 1949: Kind Hearts and Coronets

(March 2, 2019)

Huh. Is this the first Ealing comedy I’ve watched in this blog series? I believe it is… Oh! They didn’t start until 1947, so that explains it. This is only their fifth movie, apparently. This isn’t quite what I expected: It’s slow and witty, but it’s about a serial killer murdering his way into a … Continue reading June 1949: Kind Hearts and Coronets

May 1949: Africa Screams

(March 2, 2019)

Hey! Abbot and Costello. I haven’t seen too many of thse… This is uncomplicated fun: A mix of physical humour, weak bon mots and general silliness. I’m smiling a lot while watching this, but I’m not actually laughing. But I can totally see an eleven-year-old me finding this to be the height of hilarity. The … Continue reading May 1949: Africa Screams

April 1949: The Secret Garden

(March 1, 2019)

Dean Stockwell!? But he can’t possibly… Oh, he plays the ten year old boy. And I was thinking of Harry Dean Stanton. ANYWAY. This is a fascinating movie. It’s not that often you see a movie that doesn’t fit neatly into a genre category or where you have no idea where the plot is going. … Continue reading April 1949: The Secret Garden

March 1949: Little Women

(March 1, 2019)

Oh, this isn’t what I thought it was going to be at all? I thought it was with… Bette Davis? And an adult drama? Little Something Else? The? Anyway, this is a big-budget Hollywood movie, and it really shows. When this kind of thing works, it really works. And this really works. There’s so many … Continue reading March 1949: Little Women

Fun with DPMS; or, An Emacs-Based Screensaver

(February 28, 2019)

I’ve got a bunch of monitors, large and small, that (in general) are always on. Because I’m too lazy to switch stuff off and or. They display some useful information, but are largely decorative (i.e, some of them display temperature data, and some use xscreensaver to show what albums are playing). But I’ve got the … Continue reading Fun with DPMS; or, An Emacs-Based Screensaver

(Not) HDR10 to sRGB

(February 27, 2019)

I’m going to be watching a bunch of 4K movies in High Dynamic Range (i.e., UHD HDR) later this year, and I’m going to be screenshotting a bit. Now, as you can see from that blog post, I’m using an HDMI splitter that sends the UHD HDR bits to the TV, and sends 2K SDR … Continue reading (Not) HDR10 to sRGB

4AD 1994

(February 26, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1994 on Spotify. The most important thing that happened in 1994 was that Kristin Hersh launched her solo career. While not really that radically different from her Throwing Muses music, it gave us more Kristin Hersh, and that’s always better, right? Also: 4AD signed Lisa Germano and released her stunning Geek the … Continue reading 4AD 1994

No Fuss No Knead Yes Bread

(February 25, 2019)

No-knead breads have become very popular lately, but the recipes all seem to have some incomprehensibly complicated steps (involving folding the dough and a pre-heated pot) in the middle. So I thought I would try to just bypass those and see what happened, and the results were just as good. And a lot less work. … Continue reading No Fuss No Knead Yes Bread

Paperlike HD

(February 24, 2019)

Since the first time I heard of e-ink products, I was pretty enthused: Imagine having something with the resolution of paper and the convenience of a very light tablet to read from! What a marvel! And then I saw an e-ink e-reader. They’re horrible! The resolution is way less than paper, and when you flip … Continue reading Paperlike HD

February 1949: Caught

(February 23, 2019)

Quite a few of these late-40s DVDs have been from Olive Films, a company I was previously unaware existed. Is this a new iteration of one of the older quality-minded DVD companies? Like… uhm… Eureka? Artificial Eye? Curzon? Tartan? I know that some of those have gone under and been resurrected under other names… All … Continue reading February 1949: Caught

January 1949: A Letter To Three Wives

(February 23, 2019)

*gasp* Nineteen fortynine! I just have 12 more movies to go for this blog project! This is pretty good. We get presented with three women’s lives, possibly at a pivotal point for any of them, and it’s pretty interesting. But mainly I’m wondering whether Ingmar Bergman saw this movie and then thought, hmm, I can … Continue reading January 1949: A Letter To Three Wives

December 1948: Force of Evil

(February 23, 2019)

Hm… that’s a very familiar name? Oh, yeah, that’s what I thought: Orson Welles did a movie with a similar name. This is definitely not that one. It’s John Garfield playing a mobster(ish) lawyer. It’s about the intricacies of running a numbers game. Basically everybody in this movie are crooks. I don’t know. I didn’t … Continue reading December 1948: Force of Evil

October 1948: June Bride

(February 22, 2019)

Oops! I was supposed to watch this before the previous movie, but I got confused because the first copy of this DVD arrived broken and I had to get another one in and then etc. But here it is! June Bride! Bette Davis! And… people… I didn’t think Davis did that many comedies, but this … Continue reading October 1948: June Bride

November 1948: Unfaithfully Yours

(February 22, 2019)

He’s on the down low here. It feels like forever since I saw the previous movie. But it’s been only… two weeks? Last weekend was Copenhagen. Oh wow! This is written, directed and produced by Preston Sturges, the director I wasn’t aware of before doing this blog series, but who’s become a new favourite after … Continue reading November 1948: Unfaithfully Yours

CCCB: Downriver

(February 21, 2019)

For the baking today, I’m going to do a slight re-run: A few weeks ago I did a knead-free pan bread. Which turned out delicious. But it seemed to me that the recipe just had a few more complicated steps than seems necessary: You’re supposed to fold the dough a few times before doing the … Continue reading CCCB: Downriver

A New Eval Server For Emacs

(February 19, 2019)

Emacs has a mechanism for client/server communication (and remote eval) that’s simultaneously too insecure and too secure at the same time. Here’s the extremely convenient way to start a server: (setq server-use-tcp t server-host (system-name) server-name (concat “foo-” (system-name))) (server-start) This will create a file (if called on a machine named “stories”) called ~/.emacs.d/server/foo-stories with … Continue reading A New Eval Server For Emacs

4AD 1993

(February 19, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1993 on Spotify. 1992/1993 sealed 4AD’s fate: They had two major hits in the US college market with Belly’s Feed the Tree and The Breeders’ Cannonball; both going into heavy rotation on MTV (back when that meant something). Major label Warner Bros came sniffing seeking grunge acts, and Ivo Watts-Russell signed a … Continue reading 4AD 1993

Adventures in Netflix

(February 14, 2019)

I’ve been watching a buttload of 40s movies over the past few months, and I was thinking about watching something really modern next. And then it occurred to me: How about if I watch all “Netflix Original” movies released in 2019? Sizzling fresh movies! And if you’ve ever read this blog before, you’ll know there’ll … Continue reading Adventures in Netflix

My New “Trends In Packaging” Blog

(February 12, 2019)

So I bought a Kid606 remix CD via Discogs… That’s a very normal envelope. And then there’s paper. And then there’s… A Frank Ocean CD from… er… Channel Orange? And then there’s the CD I bought! So Frank Ocean is now packaging material for Kid606. These are the latest trends in packaging.

4AD 1992

(February 12, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1992 on Spotify. 1992 was another year of change for 4AD. Ivo Watts-Russell wanted to be able to pick more freely among things to release without getting in a serious relationship with bands, so he started the Guernica imprint which released three things at a rapid pace at the end of the … Continue reading 4AD 1992

New Music

(February 11, 2019)

Music I’ve bought (or resampled) this month. I discovered a shelf of 12″ things this month: They were all items I’d bought in the early noughts before I started doing FLAC instead of MP3. So I had to resample them all, of course, even though I’ll probably never listen to many of them again… But … Continue reading New Music

September 1948: Sorry, Wrong Number

(February 9, 2019)

Oh, wow! I know this storyline! I’ve been listening to old Norwegian radio dramas while walking the last year, and there was a 50s serial about an invalid woman overhearing a murder plot on a crossed line on the telephone, and then trying to do something about it — all over the phone. So the … Continue reading September 1948: Sorry, Wrong Number

August 1948: The Scar

(February 9, 2019)

Huh! The previous movie was also an Eagle-Lion thing. How odd I’ve bought two of these in sequence. At least this had been restored properly; the Amazing Mr. X looked horrible. This is noir, though, and is told from the viewpoint of a bunch of small-time (wannabe) gangsters. I don’t think I’ve seen a movie … Continue reading August 1948: The Scar

July 1948: The Amazing Mr. X

(February 9, 2019)

Wow, this is a bad DVD transfer. Looks like it’s been sourced from VHS via an NTSC broadcast. But never mind. This is fun! It’s a horror movie, sort of. Or perhaps thriller? It’s kinda thrilling, anyway. Being able to see what was going on would perhaps have been even better, but it works anyway. … Continue reading July 1948: The Amazing Mr. X

June 1948: Easter Parade

(February 8, 2019)

I can see! In colour! Based on the name I thought this was going to be a cheap B movie, but instead it’s an Irving Berlin extravaganza! With Fred Astaire and Judy Garland! But like I guessed by the “parade” name, this is basically a bunch of songs and dances and skits with some nonsensical … Continue reading June 1948: Easter Parade

May 1948: Hamlet

(February 8, 2019)

Directed by Laurence Olivier, this is pretty spiffy. Lots of weird little touches. It’s not filmed theatre at all — it’s all movie. I didn’t recognise Olivier at all. Perhaps I’ve just seen him in much later movies? Or is it just the blond(e)ness? He’s fabulous here, anyway. We’ve all seen Hamlet way too many … Continue reading May 1948: Hamlet

April 1948: Letter from an Unknown Woman

(February 7, 2019)

Oh, directed by Max Ophüls. I haven’t seen a lot of movies by him… I remember seeing The Earrings of Madame De… the other year. I think? Yes. I was apparently befuddled then. This looks great. The cinematography is relentlessly intriguing. Joan Fontaine is marvellous. Her acting style is so different from what you usually … Continue reading April 1948: Letter from an Unknown Woman

CCCB: Miracle of the Rose

(February 6, 2019)

When I went to the kitchen equipment store and asked for the stuff I needed to bake these things, the shop assistant asked me “you’re making smultringer (literally “lard rings”) after Christmas?” incredulously. Which was slightly weird. These are things one makes in Scandinavia at Xmas, but they’re eaten all year long, because these are … Continue reading CCCB: Miracle of the Rose

4AD 1991

(February 5, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1991 on Spotify. The most striking thing about 1991 is that a lot of the sleeves aren’t very good. Vaughan Oliver/Chris Bigg might have been going through a period of burn-out, and there’s some external designers used, too. Counting Backwards, Time, the Spirea X releases, Flesh Balloon are all pretty bad. And … Continue reading 4AD 1991

March 1948: Fort Apache

(February 2, 2019)

Johns Ford and Wayne! Is this the first John Wayne movie I’ve seen in this blog series? Hm… Oh, Shirley Temple and Henry Fonda, too… This is sweet. I thought this was going to be one of those serious and relevant westerns (not that there’s anything wrong with that), but instead it’s pretty funny. Not … Continue reading March 1948: Fort Apache

February 1948: Sleep, My Love

(February 2, 2019)

Noir! Sirk! Colbert! *gets popcorn* This is brilliantly paranoid; a vortex of (possible) gaslighting, (possible) insanity and (possible) conspiracies. They give away the game a bit too early, I think, and from then on it all seems a bit too predictable. But it’s fun and it’s funny and gripping and it’s quite Douglas Sirk. Sirk … Continue reading February 1948: Sleep, My Love

January 1948: The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre

(February 1, 2019)

Bogie! And… other people… I thought this was going to be a western, but it’s contemporary and is something much more singular. It’s the kind of movie you (I mean, me) have no idea what direction it’s going to go in. It’s by John Huston, so of course it’s good, and as usual with a … Continue reading January 1948: The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre

December 1947: The Lady From Shanghai

(February 1, 2019)

*gasp* Orson Welles! And Orson is dubbed into a comedy Irish dialect!? WTF?! His lips don’t match up to the audio all the time, at least, so I’m assuming it’s not Welles himself doing the awful impression… This is such a weird movie! I love it! It makes no sense! I assume that Welles’ diet … Continue reading December 1947: The Lady From Shanghai

November 1947: Out of the Past

(January 30, 2019)

This is a film noir, but it starts off as like a 50s Tennessee Williams movie. But then you get all of the genre trappings: Flash-backs, gangsters, dames, beaches, repartee. I’ve never realised how similar Robert Mitchum and Kirk Douglas are. They’re basically the same person. Mitchum is a bit more muscular, but otherwise they’re … Continue reading November 1947: Out of the Past

October 1947: Green Dolphin Street

(January 30, 2019)

This has few votes on imdb so I assumed that it was a B movie. But this is an MGM high budget costume drama… with Lana Turner and Donna Reed. And what costumes! It was nominated for a handful of technical Oscars as well as Best Cinematography and was apparently quite popular upon release. That … Continue reading October 1947: Green Dolphin Street

4AD 1990

(January 29, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1990 on Spotify. 4AD head Ivo Watts-Russell has later said that he was going to shut down 4AD after ten years, but he didn’t because he felt an obligation to the bands. So instead 1990 turned into one of the busiest years ever, with 17 releases, and some of the biggest commercial … Continue reading 4AD 1990

September 1947: Dark Passage

(January 27, 2019)

Wow! Bacall! Bogie! Agnes Moorehead! I haven’t seen this before? I don’t think so? Why!? It’s the most noir thing ever! It’s an absolutely thrilling and riveting movie. The first-person camera in the first section of the film is amazeballs. The constant coincidences in the plot makes such paranoid sense. It’s fantastic! I’m not familiar … Continue reading September 1947: Dark Passage

August 1947: Life With Father

(January 26, 2019)

Technicolor! Irene Dunne! William Powell! Elizabeth Taylor! This is not a noir! Unfortunately, the DVD version seems to be sourced from a torrent copy of the movie at a bitrate of “there’s a bitrate?”, and the torrent was sourced from an NTSC broadcast, so it’s very pretty on my screen. It looks like it originally … Continue reading August 1947: Life With Father

July 1947: Brute Force

(January 26, 2019)

Now this is noir! Burt Lancaster is in jail (where it rains all the time) planning an escape! I’m reading Miracle of the Rose by Jean Genet these days, which is told from an er slightly different perspective than this movie. But there are certain parallels: Both are told from the perspective of the prisoners, … Continue reading July 1947: Brute Force

Useful Consumer Review

(January 26, 2019)

I’ve had an Epson Expression 10000XL for over ten years, and it works very well. I mainly use it to scan covers of LPs and the like, so the A3+ size is perfect. It’s only got two problems: It’s slow, and it has a noisy fan. I can live with the latter, because the fan … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

June 1947: The Ghost and Mrs. Muir

(January 25, 2019)

This is pure entertainment, and I love that. Gene Tierney is perfect as the plucky widow, and Rex Harrison camps it up as the ghost of a ship captain. It’s such a perfect fluffy thing. It meanders pleasantly without straining the brain. But then! In the third act! Drama! This kind of thing works much … Continue reading June 1947: The Ghost and Mrs. Muir

May 1947: Possessed

(January 25, 2019)

Oh My Emacs! Another Joan Crawford movie? Is this like the 30th in this blog series? Who bought these movies anyway? This is super noir. They even found rainy days to shoot in Los Angeles. As usual, you can’t fault Crawford’s er expressive performance. The other actors also plays it large, and it’s pretty great. … Continue reading May 1947: Possessed

April 1947: Monsieur Verdoux

(January 25, 2019)

Oh, this is Chaplin’s “serious” movie? Didn’t that flop spectacularly? Chaplin was subjected to unusually hostile treatment by the press while promoting the opening of the film, and some boycotts took place during its short run. In New Jersey, the film was picketed by members of the Catholic War Veterans, who carried placards calling for … Continue reading April 1947: Monsieur Verdoux

4AD 1989

(January 22, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1989 on Spotify. The playlist is, once again, not complete because Spotify doesn’t have everything. The missing songs are marked with an asterisk*. 1989 is a year of change. None of the old 4AD heavy hitters (Cocteau Twins, Dead Can Dance, This Mortal Coil, erm Clan of Xymox) release anything this year, … Continue reading 4AD 1989

March 1947: Green For Danger

(January 19, 2019)

I’ve never seen a DVD from this er company: It seems to be called Mr. Fat W Video, and the titles look like they’ve been made in Video Toaster in the 90s. And the DVD looks to have been upsampled from a low-resolution, low-bandwidth source: There’s both jaggy lines and banding. But it doesn’t look … Continue reading March 1947: Green For Danger

February 1947: The Fabulous Dorseys

(January 19, 2019)

This is yet another (probably public domain) B movie from that DVD box set I’m apparently mentioning every third movie in this blog series. This is the rags-to-riches story about the Dorsey brothers (who were jazz musicians back in the day). The acting shifts between horrible and ridiculous, but the script is pretty amusing. And … Continue reading February 1947: The Fabulous Dorseys

January 1947: Calendar Girl

(January 18, 2019)

It’s been a while, but here’s another B movie from that box set where all the other B movies came from. Unfortunately the sound quality here is so bad that I can make out only every third word. It’s kinda charming. It doesn’t really amount to a whole lot, but it’s inoffensive. Nothing much to … Continue reading January 1947: Calendar Girl

December 1946: Humoresque

(January 18, 2019)

Joan Crawford! John Garfield! And directed by Jean Negulesco! Er… Ok, that’s a completely utterly unfamiliar name to me. That’s a really unenthusiastic Wikipedia page. He was nominated for a bunch of awards but didn’t win much. But they let him make a bunch of movies, so I guess they were commercially successful? This is… … Continue reading December 1946: Humoresque

November 1945: Brief Encounter

(January 18, 2019)

This seems awfully familiar… Oh, I watched this in 2014! Oh, well. Let’s watch it again; I seem to remember it being rather good. This 2K version has been beautifully restored — the last time I saw this was on .7K. So many more pixels! This is adapted from the Noel Coward play, and I … Continue reading November 1945: Brief Encounter

CCCB: Jane Eyre

(January 17, 2019)

Thursday is book’n’bake day. The bready hype the last few months has been the no-knead bread recipe from the New York Times. (Were they the ones responsible for the one-pot pasta travesty that was all the rage a couple of years ago? That thing was vile.) But let’s give it a go. You basically just … Continue reading CCCB: Jane Eyre

4AD 1988

(January 15, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1988 on Spotify. And here my problems really start with the “let people listen to 4AD as if they were around at the time” approach starts fraying. Over the next few years, 4AD would start getting in to the 12″ remix business, and it starts here with The Wolfgang Press’ King of … Continue reading 4AD 1988

October 1946: My Darling Clementine

(January 12, 2019)

As westerns go, it doesn’t get more western than a movie directed by John Ford starring Henry Fonda (!) as Wyatt Earp (!!) in Tombstone (!!!). Shirley, I must have seen this movie before, but I really can’t remember anything about it… This Criterion restoration of the film is almost … too much? The blacks … Continue reading October 1946: My Darling Clementine

September 1946: La belle et la bête

(January 12, 2019)

Huh! It’s an opera? Sounds very modern? I didn’t know that Jean Cocteau did operas? How odd. Oh! Philip Glass composed an opera perfectly synchronized to the film. The original soundtrack was eliminated, and he composed the opera to be performed along with the film projected behind the orchestra and voice talent. The compact disc … Continue reading September 1946: La belle et la bête

New Music

(January 11, 2019)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Not Dishwasher Safe

(January 11, 2019)

Some Kenwood attachments parts aren’t dishwasher safe. Guess which one! (Yes, they were both equally shiny before going into the dishwasher.)

August 1946: Black Angel

(January 11, 2019)

What’s this then? I wasn’t prepared for the segue into film noir was going to be this abrupt. Of the films after the war ended, virtually all the movies have been noir. This is another one, and it’s weird. I did see the twist coming a mile away, but there’s just so much strange little … Continue reading August 1946: Black Angel

July 1946: The Strange Love of Martha Ivers

(January 11, 2019)

I love the title! And… wow! This is absolutely brilliant! I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s condensed, over-the-top melodrama; every scene, every camera angle pitch perfect. Lizabeth Scott is wonderful here. I’m not familiar with her work, but she’s like every 40s dame distilled. And Kirk Douglas is perfect as the milk-toast weaselly D. … Continue reading July 1946: The Strange Love of Martha Ivers

Automated Turn-On Logic

(January 10, 2019)

CCCB: Last and First Men/Star Maker

(January 10, 2019)

Wow, it’s Thursday, so something must be baked. And it’s not me! Years ago, there was a fabulous cookie in the stores here. They were made by Walkers, and they were “stem ginger” cookies. They were glorious. Chewy, flavourful, in your face. Apparently nobody else liked them, because they disappeared only to be replaced by … Continue reading CCCB: Last and First Men/Star Maker

4AD 1987

(January 8, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1987 on Spotify. This isn’t complete, unfortunately. The Fat Skier mini-album by Throwing Muses doesn’t exist on Spotify. Three of the tracks appear on various compilations, and I’ve included them on the playlist, but you’re missing some wonderful songs like And A She-Wolf After The War, Pools in Eyes and Soap and … Continue reading 4AD 1987

June 1946: Anna and the King of Siam

(January 5, 2019)

Barbaric! I don’t know… Irene Dunne is fun, of course. Rex Harrison as the king of Siam is… as you’d expect? But there’s something kinda loathsome about this film. It gets generally positive reviews, but it’s… horrifying and dreary. I really struggled to get through the last five hours of this horrid thing. Anna and … Continue reading June 1946: Anna and the King of Siam

May 1946: The Postman Always Rings Twice

(January 5, 2019)

Wow! This just looks so… restored! It’s the crispest 40s movie I’ve seen. This 2K bluray isn’t even a Criterion release. Oh, this is the one that was remade with Jessica Lange and Jack Nicholson, but I don’t think I’ve seen this version. I can’t get over just how weird and abrupt this movie is. … Continue reading May 1946: The Postman Always Rings Twice

April 1946: The Blue Dahlia

(January 5, 2019)

Oh, written by Raymond Chandler and with Veronica Lake and Alan Ladd. We’re out of B movie territory, finally. Not that there’s anything wrong with B movies. … Wow! This is some kinda noir masterpiece! There’s just so much in here! Ladd’s semi-mute stoicicity (that’s a word). Lake’s dead-pan witty repartee. William Bendix simmering like … Continue reading April 1946: The Blue Dahlia

March 1946: Strange Impersonation

(January 4, 2019)

Well, this is a strange little movie. Barely an hour long and filmed on cheap (but nice (with the least convincing lab set ever in the history of ever)) sound stages, but it seems to have some ambition. It’s a B movie film noir/mystery thing, and is kinda unusual in that all the characters that … Continue reading March 1946: Strange Impersonation

February 1946: Breakfast in Hollywood

(January 4, 2019)

Perhaps I should have limited the number of movies from the 50 movie box set of (presumably public-domain) small-studio musical comedies for this blog series, but some of them have been unexpected gems. The vast majority are just vaudeville skits with some dialogue to fill in the gaps. Just like the previous movie, this is … Continue reading February 1946: Breakfast in Hollywood

January 1946: People are Funny

(January 4, 2019)

Of all the B-movies I’ve seen during this blog series, this is the one of them. As usual, it’s a series of vaudeville bits with some plots in between. The plot here is slightly more substantial (if that’s the word) than usual. I think. It was awfully confusing, but perhaps that’s because I’ve got a … Continue reading January 1946: People are Funny

CCCB: Composed on the Tongue

(January 3, 2019)

IT IS THURSDAY AND I MUST BAKE I had a lot of egg whites left over from making custard, so I thought I’d just make something very simple to go with this week’s book: Meringue. Olé! Caramba! Gaucho! But I put lots of liquorice powder into the er dough before piping it onto the silicone. … Continue reading CCCB: Composed on the Tongue

4AD 1986

(January 1, 2019)

Listen to 4AD 1986 on Spotify. 1985 was a good year for 4AD, but didn’t have many surprises. 1986 ramps things up considerably. First of all, we have Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares. I don’t think anybody saw that coming or were prepared for how beautiful these Bulgarian songs could be. And Cocteau Twins decided … Continue reading 4AD 1986

The Best Comics of 2018

(December 31, 2018)

*cough* *cough* I think I have a fever? What a way to start the new year. But as I’m stuck here on the couch under a duvet, I might as well type up that “best of 2018” comic thing I didn’t have time to do in December? Sure! When I happen upon a comic that’s … Continue reading The Best Comics of 2018

December 1945: Doll Face

(December 30, 2018)

I knew they had short ties back in the 40s, but… This is a B movie from that box set where all the other B movies I’ve been watching. And as usual, it’s set in a vaudeville theatre, so that the movie makers can just film a bunch of stage actors and then pretend that … Continue reading December 1945: Doll Face

November 1945: The Lost Weekend

(December 30, 2018)

Oh, Billy Wilder. I wasn’t quite aware that he had done a film noir, I think? I’ve seen all his 50s/60s comedies… This movie won all the Oscars, and confirms most of my prejudices against those movies. It’s about a tedious alcoholic doing tedious alcoholic things, but very dramatically. So much drama. It’s not that … Continue reading November 1945: The Lost Weekend

October 1945: And Then There Were None

(December 30, 2018)

Oh, this is the Agatha Christie thing! I’ve seen a bunch of versions and read the book etc, but I don’t think I’ve seen this version before. And I’ve forgotten who the murderer is. How delightful. At first I thought that they had embellished the novel greatly (as they usually did back in the days; … Continue reading October 1945: And Then There Were None

September 1945: Mildred Pierce

(December 30, 2018)

Surely I’ve seen this Joan Crawfordaganza before, but it really doesn’t seem very familiar… This is the Criterion-restored DVD version. It’s good, but it doesn’t look as brilliant as their best restorations do. The blacks never go down to full blackness, so everything is a bit washed out… but perhaps that’s what the director was … Continue reading September 1945: Mildred Pierce

August 1945: Love Letters

(December 29, 2018)

!!! Dum ti dum ti dum… WHAAAA AYN RAND! So it this going to be a super-corny schmaltzy ode to objectivism? It’s a budget movie? It looks like it’s been filmed on the cheapest, most cramped sound stages. I assume that it ended up in my queue due to block-voting on imdb (I selected movies … Continue reading August 1945: Love Letters

July 1945: Christmas in Connecticut

(December 29, 2018)

Hey! Why did this premiere in July? I assumed they did Xmas movies at Xmas? Is imdb wrong about the release date? Oh, this is delightful. It’s got a classic screwball set-up, charming actors and witty repartee. The “You have a baby? I want to give him a bath!” bit is even more unintentionally hilarious … Continue reading July 1945: Christmas in Connecticut

June 1945: Murder, He Says

(December 29, 2018)

It feels like weeks since I saw the previous movie… perhaps because it was? Gotta catch up now then. Wow, this is an odd movie. It’s a screwball comedy, but it’s set in a such a nightmarish milieu that it’s sometimes difficult to know whether to be horrified or amused: It’s about a hapless insurance … Continue reading June 1945: Murder, He Says

He gave her a room full of Chippendales that nobody sits in

(December 29, 2018)

In the continuing series of blog posts about misunderstanding lyrics:

CCCB: El desorden de to nombre

(December 27, 2018)

For the baking part of this challenge, I chose the Norwegian delicacy “school bread”, which is a bun with a dollop of custard, and then coconut frosting on the exposed bready parts. I’m guessing it’s called that because it’s very sweet and kinda fulfilling, what with all the wheat, sugar and egg involved. Not a … Continue reading CCCB: El desorden de to nombre

4AD 1985

(December 25, 2018)

Here’s 4AD 1985 on Spotify. In 1985, there weren’t really any major revelations: It’s business as usual, but, oh, what a business. The Wolfgang Press finally (after a complicated band story that started with Rema-Rema, the first “official” thing 4AD released as a label in 1980) came into their own after five years. With a … Continue reading 4AD 1985

CCCB: The Two of Them

(December 20, 2018)

It’s Thursday, so I have to pick a book to read. Hickory dickory… I choose The Two of Them by Joanna Russ. Many of the books I’ve apparently avoided reading for two and a half decades have good reasons for not being read. This is not one of them. I bought, at the time, all … Continue reading CCCB: The Two of Them

4AD 1984

(December 18, 2018)

The B-side to Kangaroo, the single by This Mortal Coil with the confusing name “It’ll End In Tears” is not included here, because I can’t find it on Spotify. It’s basically a short instrumental version of Kangaroo, though, so it’s not a catastrophe, I guess. But it’s a nice version. Somebody should fix that on … Continue reading 4AD 1984

For Flacs Sake

(December 16, 2018)

Yesterday, I bought this Black Cab EP off of Bandcamp, but when I played it today, all I got was silence. A new form of Extreme Australian Minimalism or a bug? My music interface is Emacs, and it uses flac123 to play FLAC files. It’s not a very er supported program, but I find it … Continue reading For Flacs Sake

May 1945: The Valley of Decision

(December 16, 2018)

Gregory Peck and Lionel Barrymore… And Greer Garson… Oh, I’ve seen her in Mrs. Miniver, which was very good indeed… Uh-oh! It’s a movie about Irish in the US. ME AM SUSPICIOUS There’s something particularly dreadfully tedious about Irish cultural extruded product. The combination of religiosity, pomposity, sentimentality and forced cheer is positively venomous. If … Continue reading May 1945: The Valley of Decision

April 1945: Blithe Spirit

(December 15, 2018)

*gasp* I can see colours! Technicolours! Well, this is a high-ticket item. Directed by David Lean from a script by Noel Coward (and also produced by him). Margaret Rutherford is wonderful as the most unlikely medium ever. It’s a very, very English screwball comedy: A deceased woman comes back as a ghost to visit her … Continue reading April 1945: Blithe Spirit

March 1945: Delightfully Dangerous

(December 15, 2018)

This is another cheap and cheerful B movie from that 50 movie box set. Perhaps a majority of the movies on the box set are stage shows wrapped in a nonsensical excuse for a framing device. I don’t mind; it’s fun to watch those stage shows. This is also an excuse to show a variety … Continue reading March 1945: Delightfully Dangerous

February 1945: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

(December 15, 2018)

This is like… neo-realism… before neo-realism. So is it realism? Oh, this is Elia Kazan’s first movie. He’d go on to define the 50s with A Streetcar Named Desire, On The Waterfront and East of Eden. This movie looks wonderful. It’s so sharp: The light and the shadows. New and fresh and a new thing. … Continue reading February 1945: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

January 1945: Objective Burma

(December 15, 2018)

On a War Movie scale of 1 to 10 this is 25: It’s all soldier, all the time. The director has the best profile picture ever on IMDB: And the movie is just about what you’d expect from seeing that picture: It’s brash, manly and filled with robust humour. And as you’d expect, it’s not … Continue reading January 1945: Objective Burma

December 1944: Together Again

(December 15, 2018)

Oh, this is from the Icons of Screwball Comedy DVD “box”, which I can’t seem to find at the moment… I’m substituting the other box for the dice throw picture. CONTINUITY ERROR This is a supremely amiable movie. The actors are charming; the storyline is cute; the lines are witty. It’s entertaining and amusing, but … Continue reading December 1944: Together Again

CCCB: Oliver Twist

(December 12, 2018)

It’s Thursday, so it must be time to bake something and read a book I’ve avoided reading for a couple of decades. I’ve done cake and cookies, so why not bread? Nutty bread. Looks like the flour:nut ratio is 25:10, and I have no idea whether that’s like totally nuts. I have baked a couple … Continue reading CCCB: Oliver Twist

The Best Albums of 2018

(December 12, 2018)

“Best album” has been decided by Emacs which keeps track of what albums I’ve listened to most, so this is a totally objective list that objectively literally lists the best music this year. Except for the bits where I just edited by hand, because I’ve been listening more to old music than new music this … Continue reading The Best Albums of 2018

New Music

(December 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

4AD 1983

(December 11, 2018)

Here’s 4AD 1983 on Spotity. 1983 is the watershed year for 4AD, when they transition fully from a post-punk label into something much stranger and something that people will still obsess about decades later. Most important commercially (and musically, for that matter) are the Cocteau Twins releases. The Peppermint Pig single was a major step … Continue reading 4AD 1983

November 1944: The Children Are Watching Us

(December 8, 2018)

Oo. Those are purdy fonts. Huh? An Italian movie from 1944? Oh, it’s from the director of Bicycle Thieves, which is a wonderful movie. And this is pretty great, too. According to this, it was filmed in 1942, before Italy started losing. There’s no mention of the war in this film, although we do see … Continue reading November 1944: The Children Are Watching Us

October 1944: To Have and Have Not

(December 8, 2018)

After a couple of cheapies, this is a proper, expensive A movie. I mean, Bogart? Bacall? Howard Hawks? Hemingway? Doesn’t get more A than that. The movie has been beautifully restored for this bluray release. I must have seen this movie a few times before (who hasn’t?) because some of the scenes seem awfully familiar. … Continue reading October 1944: To Have and Have Not

September 1944: Swing Hostess

(December 8, 2018)

Oh, another cheapie B-movie from PRC from that box set. The previous movie, Minstrel Man, wasn’t er good, but you never know… This one seems more promising… for one, there’s no blackface. And the lead’s a better actor. It’s a real movie, sort of: It’s not just an excuse to string a bunch of songs … Continue reading September 1944: Swing Hostess

August 1944: Minstrel Man

(December 8, 2018)

This is another B movie from that DVD box set. The transfer is pretty good here — while some of these have been sourced from torrents, this looks like a straight from film to DVD transfer. Hm… it might have been done via high quality video tape… There’s some typical tape ghosting going on. It … Continue reading August 1944: Minstrel Man

July 1944: Summer Storm

(December 7, 2018)

Yay! Douglas Sirk! Mah favourite. I was a bit in the mood for a comedy after the last movie, but whatevs. I’m such a fan that I apparently bought two copies: Wow. This has Edward Everett Horton in a kinda-sorta serious role. I don’t think I’ve seen that before. I mean, it’s Anton Chekhov (it’s … Continue reading July 1944: Summer Storm

June 1944: Since You Went Away

(December 7, 2018)

Can any powder-box really be too gay? How odd. This DVD starts with a five minute overture (i.e., some swelling orchestral music playing while we’re shown some stills). I wonder whether this was part of the original movie theatre experience… I guess it could have been, because it’s long enough that it may have been … Continue reading June 1944: Since You Went Away

May 1944: The White Cliffs of Dover

(December 7, 2018)

Ah, finally! Back to the 40s! I only have the TV on on weekends, and the past few weekends have been busy with concerts and parties and other boring stuff. This is a proper grandiose, romantic war movie, with stoic British women pining (and nursing) away at home while brave British soldiers bravely fight against … Continue reading May 1944: The White Cliffs of Dover

Bamboozled

(December 6, 2018)

I cracked open a paperback of The Incrementalists by Steven Brust and Skyler White and: Huh, apparently a child had been checking whether their pen worked? Oh well, that’s what happens when you buy used books. And then I flipped to the back cover: Uhm. Right. Are either Brust or White doctors, by any chance?

CCCB: The Place of Dead Roads

(December 6, 2018)

It’s Thursday, so it must be time for some baking and an old book. I decided on ginger nuts, and I wanted a recipe that would give me slightly soft cookies. So I went for one with syrup. Does that makes sense? I don’t know? Do I look like I know what I’m doing? There’s … Continue reading CCCB: The Place of Dead Roads

4AD 1982

(December 3, 2018)

The 4AD 1982 playlist on Spotify. In a shocker, not everything from 1982 is available on Spotify. The Birtday Party/Lydia Lunch split isn’t, but I’ve substituted some other live Birthday Party tracks. The Lunch track isn’t available at all. And the We Means We Starts single (with a different version of Not To) by Colin … Continue reading 4AD 1982

8K: Metropolis

(December 2, 2018)

Look! *gasp* The number of albums er um musical units I have surpassed an arbitrary nice-looking number in the decimal number system! But what album was the eight thousandth? It’s this one! Metropolis! A jazz-ish album from the late 60s by Mike Westbrook, who I discovered recentlyish after Phil Minton did a gig here, so … Continue reading 8K: Metropolis

My New “Trends In Packaging” blog

(December 1, 2018)

As previously seen here, we’re all about packaging. The new trend in packaging 12″ EPs is:

CCCB: Haunted

(November 29, 2018)

It’s Thursday, so it must be time to pick an ancient unread book from the bookcase and bake some cake. The lucky winner this week is Haunted, a short story collection by Joyce Carol Oates. This is a collection of horror stories published in various magazines: It’s time for a shocking confession: I’ve never read … Continue reading CCCB: Haunted

4AD 1981

(November 27, 2018)

Here’s the link: 4AD 1981 on Spotify. Working with the 4AD data set brings back memories… In the early days of the WWW, before Mozilla came on the scene, I had written a 4AD database (called “eyesore”, written in C++) where you could mark what releases you owned, and it would spit out a list … Continue reading 4AD 1981

April 1944: Trocadero

(November 24, 2018)

This movie was done for TV. I didn’t even know that they did movies for TV in 1944, but I’m apparently off by a couple of decades according to Wikipedia. Or is the “FOR TELEVISION” thing it says at the start about this particular edit of the movie? I have no idea, but this is … Continue reading April 1944: Trocadero

March 1944: The Curse of the Cat People

(November 24, 2018)

Another Val Lewton production! Hm… oh. His name seemed so familiar that I assumed that I had seen dozens of his films, but it’s really just The Ghost Ship. Is there another producer with a similar name? Hm… ah, he headed the RKO horror division, overseeing a string of cheap B-movies that looked better than … Continue reading March 1944: The Curse of the Cat People

The Business Dealings of the Lesser-Known Koch Brothers

(November 24, 2018)

February 1944: Passage to Marseille

(November 24, 2018)

Claude Rains! Bogart! This is no B movie. I found this to be a frustrating watch. It’s a sort of mid-war fantasy about war. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it’s so… stiff? Perhaps it’s because everything looks like it’s filmed on a sound stage? Even the outdoors bits? This is definitely not … Continue reading February 1944: Passage to Marseille

January 1944: Career Girl

(November 23, 2018)

That’s some design on those er leotards. Indeed. This is a cheap and short B movie, I guess? It’s got a classic set-up: A Broadway hopeful moves into a hotel for Broadway hopefuls. Lots of good movies have been written around that concept… and while this is very likeable, and it’s got some good lines … Continue reading January 1944: Career Girl

The Award for the Most 1986 Comics Ad of 1986 Goes To…

(November 23, 2018)

CCCB: Mind as Passion

(November 22, 2018)

Eenie meenie… It’s Thursday, so time to pick another book to read from the cache of my most ancient unread books and bake another cake. And this time the lucky winner is Susan Sontag: Mind as Passion by Liam Kennedy. Which I apparently bought at a sale in mid-90s (so it’s a bit newer than … Continue reading CCCB: Mind as Passion

4AD 1980

(November 18, 2018)

Some years back, I read the excellent Facing the Other Way book by Martin Aston. It’s about the British independent record company 4AD, which I used to be an er somewhat obsessive fan up in my teens, which resulted in absurdities like this. I decided to listen to everything 4AD had released, chronologically, while reading … Continue reading 4AD 1980

December 1943: Ghost Ship

(November 17, 2018)

“Why, a captain has more law than the King of Siam! A captain can marry you!” “Well, I’m already married.” This is an extremely odd film about a crew on a ship ships that’s possibly haunted. Excuse me while I do some googling. It was produced by Val Lewton for RKO Radio Pictures as part … Continue reading December 1943: Ghost Ship

November 1943: Old Acquaintance

(November 17, 2018)

It’s Bette Davis! Again! Geez, the person who bought these movies had a one track mind… Anyway! It’s a comedy! A romantic comedy! I didn’t think Davis did those, but this is the second one in this blog series… Oh, it’s not a comedy after all. That makes more sense. It’s about an insufferably grating … Continue reading November 1943: Old Acquaintance

October 1943: Guadalcanal Diary

(November 17, 2018)

This DVD has a very artifactey transfer — it’s probably mastered off of a torrent site. This is not the first movie in this blog series that’s been told from the point of view of the troops, but this one keeps the focus there throughout the movie. And while it’s a propaganda movie (the opening … Continue reading October 1943: Guadalcanal Diary

September 1943: Le Corbeau

(November 16, 2018)

What’s this then? A French movie? Made during the occupation? That had to be controversial. Ah. Some wikipedia editor says: The film caused serious problems for its director after World War II as it had been produced by Continental Films, a German production company established near the beginning of the Occupation of France, and because … Continue reading September 1943: Le Corbeau

CCCB: Larque on the Wing

(November 15, 2018)

Like everybody, I’ve got a bookcase of unread books, but perhaps weirdly, mine is organised along a simple principle: Older books sink towards the bottom. That is, as I read books, I compact the rest and move them towards the bottom left. It’s a sedimental journey. The last couple of years I’ve read very few … Continue reading CCCB: Larque on the Wing

Useful Consumer Review

(November 13, 2018)

The backlight to the monitor in the hallway half died, and the monitor was more than ten years old, so getting a replacement seemed more prudent than trying to get it fixed. I wanted a kinda small monitor for the table. The main use cases is me scanning record sleeves and paying bills (because this … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Cropping Images in Emacs

(November 12, 2018)

I woke up in the middle of the night and started thinking about cropping images in Emacs, as one does. I started wondering how Emacs processed mouse events, and that turns out to be very easy: You just use `read-event’ inside a `track-mouse’ form, and you get all the events and coordinates, offset from the … Continue reading Cropping Images in Emacs

New Music

(November 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

August 1943: Hi Diddle Diddle

(November 3, 2018)

This is a B movie, I guess? Cheap and cheerful. It’s got a convoluted and silly plot that putters away in a very pleasing manner. Much intrigue and running around. It’s not exactly a cinematic masterpiece, but it’s really funny. It’s just an almost-perfect bundle of silliness, and everything works out like it’s supposed to. … Continue reading August 1943: Hi Diddle Diddle

July 1943: This is the Army

(November 3, 2018)

Oh Em Gee! Colour! It’s a movie in colour! Is colour even possible?! My eyes! An Irving Berlin eleganza extravaganza. It’s about a bunch of guys drafted into the army and then they put on a show. As one does. It’s great! It’s got lines like Angry sarge: “Did you sleep well?” Private: “Sure. This … Continue reading July 1943: This is the Army

June 1943: Hitler’s Madman

(November 3, 2018)

Douglas Sirk! I love his 50s melodramas, but I haven’t seen any of his earlier stuff, so I’m excited to watch this movie. Virtually all of the war movies I’ve seen so far in this series (that are set in foreign countries) are set in the Czechoslovakia. I guess it makes sense… it was an … Continue reading June 1943: Hitler’s Madman

May 1943: The Ox-Bow Incident

(November 2, 2018)

Oh! A western! With a name like that I thought this was going to be about an obscure Pacific naval battle or something. This is from a director, William A. Wellman, who’s done a shit-load of movies, but who’s unknown to me, for some reason or other. Aaaanyway. This is a kinda odd western. It’s … Continue reading May 1943: The Ox-Bow Incident

April 1943: Clancy Street Boys

(November 2, 2018)

I am Confused, Bemused and Bemildred. What is this?!?! It starts off with a street gang spanking their leader… and then the rival gang spanks him… and I guess my general confusion is due to the video quality is kinda like fourth generation VHS, and the audio is more rumble than voice. But what’s even … Continue reading April 1943: Clancy Street Boys

March 1943: Hangmen Also Die

(November 2, 2018)

Huh. A British war movie directed by Fritz Lang from a script co-written with Bertolt Brecht. I had no idea what to expect here, but they use their not-inconsiderable talents to go all-in on the anti-Nazi propaganda war effort. And it’s great! The Nazis are evil, eeevil; mincing and brutally sadistic at the same time. … Continue reading March 1943: Hangmen Also Die

Cleanroom Development

(October 30, 2018)

Useful Consumer Review

(October 28, 2018)

I needed a new scanner, and I wanted one that was significantly faster than the one I’ve been using until now. After some Googling, I landed on the Epson DS-50000, which is an A3+ scanner with a promise of being able to scan an A3 300DPI page in four seconds. The web site I bought … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

A Scene From Parts Unknown Presented Without Comment

(October 28, 2018)

February 1943: Air Force

(October 27, 2018)

It’s a war movie! I’ve seen some spy stuff during this blog series, but very few out-and-out war movies. And it’s by Howard Hawks, so it looks like the shots are gorgeous… Except that the transfer I have i ridiculous. There’s digital artefacts all over the place. Not just banding and exaggerated grains, but also … Continue reading February 1943: Air Force

January 1943: The Hard Way

(October 27, 2018)

Opening with an attempted suicide, that’s not what you expect when imdb says that this is a romantiv musical. The scenes of industrial grime in a factory town are stunning. imdb is on acid, of course. This is a movie about struggling out of property and the hard-nosed grift needed. Ida Lupino is brilliant as … Continue reading January 1943: The Hard Way

A Cover Of A Comics Magazine Presented Without Comment

(October 27, 2018)

Download Codes

(October 27, 2018)

I mostly buy music on physical format because… I don’t know. I’m old? Right. So included in the latest batch was the new single from 80s phenomenon Soft Cell: And as is often the case these days, there’s a download code included so that people presumably can avoid actually listening to the vinyl: Now, I … Continue reading Download Codes

December 1942: A Night To Remember

(October 26, 2018)

Oh, this is just perfect. It’s a screwball comedy about a couple moving into a haunted tenement house… OR IS IT!??! Things move at a brisk pace, and if all the individual gags aren’t exactly genius, it all just kind of works. “Jeff! Don’t be a fool!” “Don’t be silly. I’ve always been a fool.” … Continue reading December 1942: A Night To Remember

November 1942: Once Upon a Honeymoon

(October 26, 2018)

Ginger Rogers! Cary Grant! In a romantic Nazi intrigue comedy! Director Leo McCarey was a veteran director with films like Duck Soup on his resumé, but hadn’t really been super-successful. (He did do An Affair To Remember later, though.) And… this movie tries so hard. It’s got so much going for it, like Rogers’ preposterous … Continue reading November 1942: Once Upon a Honeymoon

October 1942: Now, Voyager

(October 26, 2018)

Ooo! Bette Davis! I thought that perhaps I’d seen this before, but if so, it must be a long, long time ago, because scenes seem familiar in vague flashes. Perhaps I saw it as a child? But, man, Davis is amazing here. Didn’t get the Oscar, of course. Isn’t it weird how it’s more difficult … Continue reading October 1942: Now, Voyager

September 1942: The Major and the Minor

(October 13, 2018)

What could be more appropriate after watching a movie with Fred Astaire than a movie with Ginger Rogers? Had they stopped working together by this time? The computer says yes, almost. This is directed by Billy Wilder, who’d worked in movies a lot before this, but it’s only his second directorial feature (and the one … Continue reading September 1942: The Major and the Minor

August 1942: Holiday Inn

(October 13, 2018)

Yes! Fred Astaire! Bing Crosby! Irving Berlin! Bluray! I wonder whether I have the release date wrong here… or did they really release an Xmas movie in August? Watching movies by month I wanted to experience the change of the seasons, but… Anyway, it won the Oscar for best song: White Christmas, and no surprise. … Continue reading August 1942: Holiday Inn

July 1942: The Pride of the Yankees

(October 13, 2018)

Oh. This is about some sports guy? Who got a disease named after him? And it was nominated for all the Oscars? But only won for “Best Film Editing”? And it’s directed by schmaltzmeister Sam Wood, who we previously saw in Our Town and Kitty Foyle? I fear the absolute worst! And, yes, Wood lays … Continue reading July 1942: The Pride of the Yankees

June 1942: Mrs. Miniver

(October 12, 2018)

This movie won all the Oscars. So I approached this with some scepticism. But it’s irresistibly charming. The actors playing the Minivers are absolutely wonderful, but there are some variable performances otherwise. The plot’s not quite what I expected, either… Still, I don’t think this is quite as good as Wyler’s previous movie The Little … Continue reading June 1942: Mrs. Miniver

May 1942: Private Buckaroo

(October 12, 2018)

This is from that collection of cheap b movies and features the Andrews Sisters. This also has the fabulous Mary Wickes. She can liven up a movie just by being in the general vicinity of it, and when she’s on the screen, she’s just everything. And Shemp Howard is a perfect foil for her. This … Continue reading May 1942: Private Buckaroo

April 1942: This Gun For Hire

(October 12, 2018)

Yay! A real noir thriller! Alan Ladd’s great as the taciturn assassin. I don’t think I’ve seen many movies with Veronica Lake, and she’s definitely of the “I’m standing here waiting until the other person finishes their line so that I can say my line” school of acting, but she’s fun. She’s certainly a better … Continue reading April 1942: This Gun For Hire

New Music

(October 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Variable Pitch Tables

(October 10, 2018)

While using the Emacs WordPress interface on various screens here, it became clear that the sloppy way I was laying out various tables just didn’t really work. I was using the `variable-pitch’ font and sort of eyeballing how much space each column would take and then using `display ‘(space :align-to 100))’ to line stuff up. … Continue reading Variable Pitch Tables

Pickle

(October 9, 2018)

Further Fun With the Clipboard

(October 7, 2018)

In the previous episode of this blog, I mused about how Emacs should perhaps handle non-text yanking (i.e., HTML and images). I didn’t really want to write a mode to examine the clipboard and the selections, but I did anyway just now, and I discovered something kinda interesting. Well I never! Anyway, this is basically … Continue reading Further Fun With the Clipboard

March 1942: Reap the Wild Wind

(October 6, 2018)

When I saw the start of the title sequence, with the American eagle and everything, I thought that we’d finally arrived at a honest-to-goodness American war movie. But no: It’s a Cecil B. DeMille extravaganza set in 1840. It’s a romantic/comedic/epic kind of thing, and I had no idea that the plot would get this … Continue reading March 1942: Reap the Wild Wind

February 1942: To Be Or Not To Be

(October 6, 2018)

To Be Or Not To Be. Ernst Lubitsch. 1942. Oh yeah! This one! I’ve seen it several times before. And the Mel Brooks remake, of course. I’ve been attempting to avoid movies I’ve seen before in this blog series, but my research sucks! “Heil myself.” It’s a very funny film, of course, and as a … Continue reading February 1942: To Be Or Not To Be

The Mysteries of the Selection

(October 6, 2018)

After writing the package to edit WordPress articles in Emacs, I started thinking about doing something about non-text X selections in Emacs. Emacs has all the required low-level support it needs to be able to yank HTML and images into Emacs, but nobody’s mainstreamed more high-level support into Emacs. Mostly because nobody really knew what … Continue reading The Mysteries of the Selection

My New Concert Review Blog

(October 5, 2018)

I went to a metal festival. In a church! It’s been desecrated I mean des-consecrated, but it’s still a great room. Thank you, religious people, for making impractical spaces like this that can be used for fun stuff now. The downstairs crypt is more intimate. Anyway, as usual I thought that the traditional metal bands … Continue reading My New Concert Review Blog

January 1942: The Man Who Came To Dinner

(October 4, 2018)

The Man Who Came To Dinner. William Keighley. 1942. Oh this isn’t Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner… I did think that was a much later movie… and it is! Well, you can’t but enjoy Monty Woolley’s over-the-top performance, and Bette Davis is here, so it’s definitely got things going for it. It’s funny! It’s good, … Continue reading January 1942: The Man Who Came To Dinner

Editing WordPress Articles in Emacs

(October 2, 2018)

I’ve got my blog on WordPress.com, which has some positive aspects (I don’t have to run it) and some negative (I can’t control it fully). But whether I’m running WordPress myself or not, there’s one thing that’s always true: I loathe the browser-based editor. When composing blog articles, I’ve been using the post-by-mail interface that … Continue reading Editing WordPress Articles in Emacs

December 1941: Sullivan’s Travels

(September 29, 2018)

Sullivan’s Travels. Preston Sturges. 1941. After a string of low-budget movies today, here’s an A feature. By Preston Sturges! This is his third movie in this blog series! I didn’t plan this! It starts off with people fighting on the top of a speeding train! That’s the best way to start a film! It’s a … Continue reading December 1941: Sullivan’s Travels

November 1941: Secret of the Wastelands

(September 29, 2018)

Secret of the Wastelands. Derwin Abrahams. 1941. Oh! This is a Hopalong Cassidy movie! I don’t recall having seen any of these before, but Hopalong himself looks very familiar. According to imdb, William Boyd basically did no other roles after the mid-30s, so I guess I must have seen one of these before? Looks like … Continue reading November 1941: Secret of the Wastelands

October 1941: All-American Co-Ed

(September 29, 2018)

All-American Co-Ed. LeRoy Prinz. 1941. Another thing from the box set, and pretty kooky. It’s a great set-up where they manage to come up with a good explanation for why a guy from an all-male college disguises himself as a woman and goes to an all-female college. I know! The drag isn’t very er fishy, … Continue reading October 1941: All-American Co-Ed

September 1941: Let’s Go Collegiate

(September 29, 2018)

Let’s Go Collegiate. Jean Yarbrough. 1941. Another b-movie cheapie from the musicals box set. And what seems to be a trend here, the b-movies are more diverse than the main features: This on has not only black people, but an Asian guy! Which is a first in this blog series, I think. It’s amusing, I … Continue reading September 1941: Let’s Go Collegiate

Useful Consumer Review

(September 29, 2018)

In the last episode, I whined about how useless wireless earbuds are, with the main problem being that the typical range of these earbuds extends all the way from your left ear to your left shirt pocket, and not any further (when you’re outdoors and the blutooth signal doesn’t have walls to bounce off of). … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

August 1941: The Little Foxes

(September 29, 2018)

The Little Foxes. William Wyler. 1941. *gasp* Bette Davis! She’s magnificent here, but that shouldn’t be a surprise. This is a film set in the somewhat oldee south, but I wonder whether it’s a conscious political decision to have a black person in just about every scene (mostly as servants, of course). It makes a … Continue reading August 1941: The Little Foxes

July 1941: Sergeant York

(September 29, 2018)

Sergeant York. Howard Hawks. 1941. This is a big-budget huge sentimental Hollywood movie written by John Huston and directed by Howard Hawks and starring just about everybody. This was nominated for all the Oscars and won a couple, and neither is surprising. This is one of those national myth-building American films that pop now and … Continue reading July 1941: Sergeant York

June 1941: Man Hunt

(September 28, 2018)

Man Hunt. Fritz Lang. 1941. Is this the first American war film (sort of) in this blog series? Everybody’s speaking English, though (except for the Germans), so perhaps it was just financed by Americans, but it’s British? And it’s Fritz Lang! Golly! The cinematography is on another plane entirely from these other American films I’ve … Continue reading June 1941: Man Hunt

May 1941: Sunny

(September 28, 2018)

Sunny. Herbert Wilcox. 1941. This is more the video quality I expected from the 50-movie DVD box set. Completely unrestored. But the sound’s kinda good. This is based on a stage musical, so it’s chock-full with musical numbers and doesn’t have much of a plot. Which is fine by me. Yay! Edward Everett Horton! I … Continue reading May 1941: Sunny

April 1941: That Uncertain Feeling

(September 23, 2018)

That Uncertain Feeling. Ernst Lubitsch. 1941. There’s like… nothing here. The film spins its wheels from the start to the end, and nothing really happens. It’s plain weird. But it might just be my lack of concentration? I don’t know. I skipped back a few times because I just didn’t track what (if anything) was … Continue reading April 1941: That Uncertain Feeling

March 1941: Meet John Doe

(September 22, 2018)

Meet John Doe. Frank Capra. 1941. I’ve seen this before! Unfortunately, this is the Amazon Prime version of this movie, and the video sucks and the audio is very mp3-artifactey. (Everybody is talking from underneath the ocean. Whoosh whoosh.) NEVER AMAZON PRIME AGAIN (unless I really have to). This is, of course, a very good … Continue reading March 1941: Meet John Doe

February 1941: Road Show

(September 21, 2018)

Road Show. Hal Roach. 1941. I love it! It’s one of those screwball comedy things. It’s absolutely insane. This is another movie from the absurd box set, and the audio/video quality is a lot better than anybody has a reason to expect. It’s a low budget movie, so I guess it’s a “B movie” of … Continue reading February 1941: Road Show

January 1941: Come Live With Me

(September 21, 2018)

Come Live With Me. Clarence Brown. 1941. This is another pro-immigration movie, with a refugee from Austria who’s being deported, and the very odd hi-jinx that ensue. (Which include her married boyfriend frittering and his wife (and her boyfriend) and you know.) It’s obliquely making references to the Situation in Europe. It’s very risque, and … Continue reading January 1941: Come Live With Me

December 1940: Kitty Foyle

(September 21, 2018)

Kitty Foyle. Sam Wood. 1940. I guess you could call this a light-hearted romp… or loathsome misogynistic propaganda. But that’s only the intro, and then we’re into the main part of the movie, and things get less divisive, I guess, but… I don’t understand these people at all. “My favorite movie of all time” “Another … Continue reading December 1940: Kitty Foyle

November 1940: Little Nellie Kelly

(September 20, 2018)

Little Nellie Kelly. Norman Taurog. 1940. So Irish. So very Irish. But this is an odd duck. It takes us through the American immigration process in excruciating detail. Is it meant as a manual for Irish immigrants? It’s based on a Broadway show from 1922… so what was the reason for the movie version in … Continue reading November 1940: Little Nellie Kelly

October 1940: Christmas in July

(September 20, 2018)

Christmas in July. Preston Sturges. 1940. Oh my god. This is one of those spiralling-out-of-control comedies with plenty of room for embarrassment, which I have to watch from behind a pillow. But it’s really good. Such great lines and so likeable characters. Is this one of those films they show on TV every Xmas? Because … Continue reading October 1940: Christmas in July

September 1940: Up in the Air

(September 20, 2018)

Up in the Air. Howard Bretherton. 1940. This is the first film from the 25 DVD/50 movie musicals box I’ve seen. I was expecting horrid audio and video quality, but this isn’t so bad… the sound is a bit scratchy. It a very simple (presumably low-budget) film about musical film-makers favourite subject: Performers putting on … Continue reading September 1940: Up in the Air

Z-Wave and Emacs

(September 16, 2018)

I’ve had a 433-MHz-based “home automation” system (i.e., light switches) for quite some time. It works kinda OK. That is, I’m able to switch the lights on and off, which is the main point. But, man, the range of 433MHz devices sucks, including all Telldus models. I’ve been able to overcome the problems by having … Continue reading Z-Wave and Emacs

August 1940: Night Train to Munich

(September 15, 2018)

Night Train to Munich. Carol Reed. 1940. I’m guessing that Carol Reed isn’t a woman? Yes? It just occurred to me that I did no filtering for gender when I bought these films, so I’m wondering whether this is going to be a 120 movie sausage fest… Anyway! I was very impressed by the montage … Continue reading August 1940: Night Train to Munich

July 1940: The Great McGinty

(September 15, 2018)

The Great McGinty. Preston Sturges. 1940. I like the plot structure, what with most of the movie being a flashback, and I like that the protagonist is, well, a crook. But such a personable crook. It’s all about grift and the mob running US politics and stuff, really, and we’re cheering them on. Being a … Continue reading July 1940: The Great McGinty

June 1940: The Mortal Storm

(September 15, 2018)

The Mortal Storm. Frank Borzage. 1940. This is the first war film in this blog series, and I assume that there’ll be a lot more, but perhaps not before December 1941? It’s the first one that touches on the war in Europe at all, except for a throw-away line in His Girl Friday. Anyway, this … Continue reading June 1940: The Mortal Storm

May 1940: Our Town

(September 15, 2018)

Our Town. Sam Wood. 1940. I hadn’t quite realised how many of films from the early 40s were based on theatre plays. I think so far it’s been… all of them? Almost all of them? This is another one. This was nominated for all the Oscar awards, including “best sound, recording”, and the sound is … Continue reading May 1940: Our Town

April 1940: The Doctor Takes A Wife

(September 14, 2018)

The Doctor Takes A Wife. Alexander Hall. 1940. You gotta admire the sheer preposterousness (that’s a word) of the premise here, but it just doesn’t fire on all cylinders. It’s also a very typical “battle of the sexes” thing of the period, which doesn’t help. But there’s a lot here to enjoy. The performances are … Continue reading April 1940: The Doctor Takes A Wife

March 1940: Too Many Husbands

(September 14, 2018)

Too Many Husbands. Wesley Ruggles. 1940. Hm… Did I see this before? I didn’t think so… Is it part of a box set I’ve bought some years ago? *time passes while I rummage through the bookcase* I dud have it! On “Icons of Screwball Comedy Volume One”. Well, this isn’t a very good track record … Continue reading March 1940: Too Many Husbands

February 1940: Pinocchio

(September 14, 2018)

Pinocchio. Norman Ferguson. 1940. I’ve never seen this one, but I’ve seen excerpts from it every Xmas (on a couple of channels), so I’ve heard the intro song more than a 80 times, and I’m feeling very Xmas-y now. You can say many things about Disney, but at least they took really good care of … Continue reading February 1940: Pinocchio

January 1940: His Girl Friday

(September 14, 2018)

His Girl Friday. Howard Hawks. 1940. And we’re off! I’ve seen this movie plenty of times before, and that’s not what I want to do in this blog series, really, but I had bought a new copy of this (as part of a screwball box set), so what the hey. And, as you all know, … Continue reading January 1940: His Girl Friday

Decade

(September 14, 2018)

When watching movies, it’s easy to get stuck in a rut and always return to your favourite genre. (Which, for me, is science fiction. I’ll basically watch anything that’s science fiction, no matter how bad it is, and it gets really, really bad.) I’ve tried to mix it up by giving myself various stupid challenges, … Continue reading Decade

New Music

(September 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month. After starting to sort the music I have by release date, I noticed that I have like absolutely no music from the 60s.  So I’ve been trying to explore that slightly more (like with the absolutely wonderful Bobbie Gentry), but I’m not really sure what methodology to use. I mean, … Continue reading New Music

Nails and Hammers

(September 9, 2018)

You know that old saying about gravitating to your favourite tool? Well, my go-to thing for compositing text on top of images (and stuff) was LaTeX, and I’ve been doing that for decades. What I’m mostly using this stuff for these days is the extremely important task of displaying weather data on small, cheap USB-powered … Continue reading Nails and Hammers

Useful Consumer Review

(September 1, 2018)

I walk a lot, and I used to listen to music while walking, using big, beefy, good wireless headphones or headphones with an mp3 player built in. That’s a solved problem; excellent products exist. Last year I started listening to radio dramas instead. Mostly mysteries, and quite a lot of stuff from the 50s. It’s … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

IMDB in Emacs; or, Honey, I Made an ORM

(August 28, 2018)

I’ve always been frustrated by the IMDB web pages. Usually when I’m looking at a director’s oeuvre, I’m not interested in all the shorts, videos and games the director has created, but just want a list of the movies. When I’m looking at a specific movie, it’s often because I want to know who the … Continue reading IMDB in Emacs; or, Honey, I Made an ORM

TSP2012: Radioman

(August 25, 2018)

Radioman. Mary Kerr. 2012. Whaaa! Another documentary! I’m developing a hatred of documentaries… But mostly American ones. This one in British, by Mary Kerr, and it’s good. But you have to wonder about whether this film will do its subject any good or whether it’ll just… make him so public that he can’t continue to … Continue reading TSP2012: Radioman

TSP2017: Letters From Generation RX

(August 25, 2018)

Letters From Generation RX. Kevin P. Miller. 2017. OH FUCK! It’s an American documentary, So it’s an incessant barrage of pedestrian imagery, where they try to keep the interest of bored viewers by putting in as many edits in per second as possible replete with “action reenactments”. I just loathe the “sentence fragment with dramatic … Continue reading TSP2017: Letters From Generation RX

TSP2011: Genevive Goes Boating

(August 25, 2018)

Genevive Goes Boating. Lucy Gray. 2011. This short (narrated by Tilda Swinton) can be found on Vimeo. It’s a kind of fairy tale/parable thing. I really like the way it’s made: The home-made-aesthetic scenography etc, and it is interesting, but I didn’t really get much involved. I guess the fairy tale thing just doesn’t work … Continue reading TSP2011: Genevive Goes Boating

TSP2017: Okja

(August 25, 2018)

Okja. Joon-ho Bong. 2017. I remember there being some controversy about this film at the Cannes Film Festival because it’s a Netflix film. That is, it wasn’t released to movie theatres? I think? And they changed the rules to exclude such films afterwards? Anyway, I signed up to Netflix to see just this film, and … Continue reading TSP2017: Okja

TSP2014: The Gospel According to St. Derek

(August 25, 2018)

The Gospel According to St. Derek. Andy Kimpton-Nye. 2014. This documentary can be found on Youtube here, here, and here. It’s a quite traditional documentary: A theme is established, and then they get a series of people talking about that, and then a new subject, and then pretty much all the same people talking about … Continue reading TSP2014: The Gospel According to St. Derek

TSP2017: async – first light

(August 25, 2018)

async – first light. Apichatpong Weerasethakul. 2017. This short can be found on Vimeo. It’s based on a piece by Ryuichi Sakamoto and is by the guy who made Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives and is a series of clips of people sleeping. It’s nice. This post is part of The Tilda … Continue reading TSP2017: async – first light

TSP2016: The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger

(August 24, 2018)

The Seasons in Quincy: Fout Portraits of John Berger. Bartek Dziadosz. 2016. This is a documentary film in four parts (with four different directors) produced by The Derek Jarman Lab. I know nothing about John Berger (but I’ve probably seen a couple of films based on his… work?), and this is not a film that … Continue reading TSP2016: The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger

TSP2018: Isle of Dogs

(August 24, 2018)

Isle of Dogs. Wes Anderson. 2018. Hey, it’s a Wes Anderson film, so of course Tilda Swinton is in here somewhere. It’s an animated film, but she does the voice of Oracle. (She has like four lines in the film, and two of them are “what?”) And… I love Wes Anderson, but it’s weird. Not … Continue reading TSP2018: Isle of Dogs

TSP2015: B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West-Berlin 1979-1989

(August 24, 2018)

B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West-Berlin 1979-1989. Jörg A. Hoppe. 2015. Hey! This is another part of my project to see whether all the films of a moderately famous actor are available in these modern days. (Spoiler: No.) It’s been a couple of years since the last one, so I thought I’d just do mop-up … Continue reading TSP2015: B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West-Berlin 1979-1989

Twiddling Youtube; or, I mean, Innovations in Machine Learning

(August 14, 2018)

I mean, we’ve all been annoyed when we set up our USB monitor in our hallway that displays weather data, and then we decided to show videos from Youtube that somehow relate to the music that’s playing our apartment; we’ve dreamed of having something like the following catch our eyes when passing by on the … Continue reading Twiddling Youtube; or, I mean, Innovations in Machine Learning

New Music

(August 12, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Innovations in Emacs Touch Interfacing

(August 7, 2018)

I’ve long attempted to hack some touch interfaces for laptops in non-keyboard configurations. The sad thing is that there aren’t really any good solutions in GNU/Linux. If you want to be able to respond to more complex events like “two finger drag”, you have to hack GTK and use Touchégg, and then it turns out … Continue reading Innovations in Emacs Touch Interfacing

Best Size Specification Ever

(August 5, 2018)

I was going to buy that book it if it were 13-43/64″ wide, but 13-41/64″ is just an insult! Pah! “Monster sized.” Puny!

That’s Totally a UFO

(August 4, 2018)

I can haz mp4?

(August 3, 2018)

Let’s Encrypt was so ridiculously easy to install on my private web server that I wondered whether I could switch to mp4s for gifs. I mean, video snippets. I can’t do those directly on wordpress.com, because wordpress.com does not support controlling where mp4 videos appear in email posts. So let’s try! Did it work? Huh? … Continue reading I can haz mp4?

Innovations in Web Scraping

(August 3, 2018)

I added event descriptions to my Concerts in Oslo a few months back. It mostly worked kinda OK, but it’s using heuristics to find out what “the text” is, so it sometimes includes less-than-useful information. In particular, those fucking “YES IT KNOW IT”S A FUCKING COOKIE!” texts that all fucking web sites slather their pages … Continue reading Innovations in Web Scraping

Stamped Box

(August 1, 2018)

Hey! I got a package from France with the most stamps ever! Just look at it! Such variety! I’m very impressed. The contents are even better. It’s the Éric Rohmer bluray/DVD box set. The Intégrale. That sounds much classier than “complete edition box set”. I mean, if that’s what it means? The French are so … Continue reading Stamped Box

Useful Consumer Review

(July 28, 2018)

When buying electronics, the range of products available is vastly superior in the US compared to any European country. Fortunately, power adapters are now almost all “universal”; that is, they accept 110V-230V. So the only problem is the physical interface. I’ve been using these teensy adapters for a while, but the problem is… .. that … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Innovations in Balcony Furniture

(July 28, 2018)

It’s been a very pleasant summer here (I’m not even wearing a sweater now), so I’ve been spending a lot of time out on the balcony in the evening. I’ve had this chair for yonks, but it has two problems: 1) it’s not that comfy, and 2) it’s too tall. The house I’m in is … Continue reading Innovations in Balcony Furniture

Century 2018: Black Panther

(July 28, 2018)

Black Panther. Ryan Coogler. 2018. This started off really well and I was like “wow! this is like a real movie or something!” but then soon got bogged down in really bad acting (like the challengers in the coronation scene (and where they should have had thousands of people watching the fight, not dozens CGId … Continue reading Century 2018: Black Panther

Century 2017: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

(July 27, 2018)

Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Rian Johnson. 2017. OK, I’ve seen the other new Star Wars films… I think… And I saw the original ones back in the 80s. And I saw the first of the prequels. In short, I’m not really a Star Wars fan, but I though the previous one was pretty entertaining … Continue reading Century 2017: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Century 2016: Tickled

(July 27, 2018)

The parrot is fascinated by all the bokeh. Tickled. David Farrier. 2016. Last year, I bought all the films John Waters said were the best of 2016. Well, at least all the ones that were available at the time… There were a couple that were totally “er, no”, like Cattle Towards Glow, but in general … Continue reading Century 2016: Tickled

Century 2015: Louder Than Bombs

(July 21, 2018)

Louder Than Bombs. Joachim Trier. 2015. Hey! A Norwegian film! And it’s co-written by the guy who did a movie in my apartment. Er… small world? This, weirdly enough, is filmed in the US, with English language actors and a mostly American crew, I guess? And it’s weird seeing Joachim Trier’s usual directorial touches that … Continue reading Century 2015: Louder Than Bombs

Century 2014: Retour à Ithaque

(July 21, 2018)

Retour à Ithaque. Laurent Cantet. 2014. Quite a few of the DVDs I have I can’t really remember why I bought. I do remember this one: I thought it was a Cuban film, so I got it for my World of Films and Cocktails blog series. And it is filmed in Cuba, but it’s really … Continue reading Century 2014: Retour à Ithaque

Century 2013: Venus in Fur

(July 21, 2018)

Gah. Another DVVD with forced subtitles… Venus in Fur. Roman Polanski. 2013. Without Canal+, there would have been no European cinema for the past two decades. That’s my conclusion after watching a lot of films these past couple of years. Canal+ is always, in my mind at least, listed as a co-producer of any European … Continue reading Century 2013: Venus in Fur

Century 2011: Dreams of a Life

(July 20, 2018)

Dreams of a Life. Carol Morley. 2011. Oh, right. This is a documentary by Carol Morley, who did The Alcohol Years, which I saw… a couple of years ago? Hm. I don’t remember what it was about, but I must have liked it if I bought this one? Hm, I think I did? So it’s … Continue reading Century 2011: Dreams of a Life

Century 2010: The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec

(July 20, 2018)

Gah! This is one of those blu-rays that has a ‘forced’ subtitle; i.e., it’s part of the video stream instead of being a separate thing. Whyyyy. Oh, it’s by Digital Factory. I guess that’s more digital. I was so confused by the subtitles here. Jardin. Jaguar. Ooh! I love those ears. So Tardi. The Extraordinary … Continue reading Century 2010: The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec

Century 2009: Precious

(July 20, 2018)

Precious. Lee Daniels. 2009. Hey, I bought this one twice. Even if it won a couple of Oscars it’s not that bad! But the American convention of having adult actors playing teenagers is so weird. For the first few minutes I wondered why a woman in her mid-20s was attending junior high, but then (helpfully) … Continue reading Century 2009: Precious

Concert Diary: Rockefeller

(July 18, 2018)

Dear concert diary. Today I went to a Slowdive concert, mostly because Lost Girls were the opening act. They were great, and so were Slowdive, but the experience was somewhat marred by the odour of the venue. Rockefeller is the foundational concert venue in Oslo. t’s always been somewhat whiffy: If you don’t stand in … Continue reading Concert Diary: Rockefeller

Fighting Thirst…

(July 15, 2018)

… and capitalism at the same time.

Century 2008: The Smiths: The Queen is Dead

(July 14, 2018)

The Smiths: The Queen is Dead. Derek Jarman. 2008. What’s this then? Oh, it’s an “unauthorised” documentary about The Smiths focusing on The Queen is Dead. I’ve seen a couple of these before. They’re made on the cheap… But this does actually have The Smith’s songs, so it’s not as no-budget as some of the … Continue reading Century 2008: The Smiths: The Queen is Dead

Century 2007: What Would Jesus Buy?

(July 14, 2018)

What Would Jesus Buy?. Rob VanAlkemade. 2007. Whaaa. It’s a documentary by that Supersize Me guy? Why did I buy this? I hate modern American documentaries: They’re snippet, snippet, snippet with some officious deep male voice telling you how outrageous everything is. Or… Oh, it isn’t. It’s a mocumentary? Well, that makes more sense. I … Continue reading Century 2007: What Would Jesus Buy?

Century 2006: As You Like It

(July 13, 2018)

As You Like It. Kenneth Branagh. 2006. Oh, Kenneth Branagh. How we adored him in the early 90s. He could do no wrong. He was that perfect mix of high culture (Shakespeare) and real drama (Peter’s Friends) with a detour into silly genre (Dead Again). And he was married to Emma Thompson and had Phyllida … Continue reading Century 2006: As You Like It

Century 2004: Triple Agent

(July 13, 2018)

Triple Agent. Éric Rohmer. 2004. Oops! I had gotten to 2002 last month, and then I went back to 2001 in the previous post. So now we’re at 2004, because I have nothing from 2003, so that all worked out perfectly! Right? And… it’s an Éric Rohmer film! Yay! And it’s a period drama. I’m … Continue reading Century 2004: Triple Agent

Century 2001: The Man Who Wasn’t There

(July 13, 2018)

The Man Who Wasn’t There. Joel Coen. 2001. Hey, it’s been a while since I saw a movie. Busy busy. But finally! A weekend that’s all open. Now, I was a bit distracted while watching parts of this film, It certainly has an original cast of characters and some great actors in Frances MacDormand and … Continue reading Century 2001: The Man Who Wasn’t There

New Music

(July 12, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Pox

(July 11, 2018)

Flearman’s comments on the post about footnotes* reminded me that I was going to read all the issues of Pox, the Swedish punk indie comix magazine. So I got buyin’: These are all from Dolores in Göteborg. That’s like…. thousands of pages of late-80s anthologies that I’ll… get around to reading any day now. But … Continue reading Pox

Century 2002: Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

(June 30, 2018)

Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. George Clooney. 2002. I didn’t have tripe sec, so I used a orange liqueur instead. Offal, oranges; it’s all the same. But this is the first film George Clooney directed, and it’s such a typical first movie. Clooney’s going USE ALL THE TRICKS FROM ALL THE MOVIES in this film. … Continue reading Century 2002: Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

Century 2001: Hawaiian Gardens

(June 30, 2018)

Hawaiian Gardens. Percy Adlon. 2001. Well, this is a different aesthetic from Percy Adlon. Instead of super-saturated colours a sound stage and nice film stock, this looks like it’s been filmed on an early-generation digital camera, and it’s all on location with natural lighting. It’s got a rating of 4.1 on imdb, which is the … Continue reading Century 2001: Hawaiian Gardens

Everything Dies

(June 30, 2018)

Gah! I had the almost perfect machine for schlepping around the apt while cleaning, and then it goes and does this: Rebooting seems to help… sometimes. One out of five reboots it seems to come up alright again, but if I flip the orientation it goes back to that state again. It’s an HP Spectre … Continue reading Everything Dies

Century 2000: In The Mood For Love

(June 30, 2018)

In The Mood For Love. Kar Wai Wong. 2000. The last time I saw this film, it looked completely different! 2046 was more like this film, only much more mannered. This film has nerve and emotional depth. I watched the Anthony Bourdain Hong Kong show the other week, and he mentioned that this was his … Continue reading Century 2000: In The Mood For Love

Innovations in Music Distribution

(June 29, 2018)

I was at a jazz concert the other week, and I was looking at the CDs and stuff the musicians had brought to sell. Adam Pulz Melbye had brought a shrinkwrapped bass string: With a Bandcamp download code. (Censored above.) I just had to buy one! Genius! It’s weird that I haven’t seen anybody doing … Continue reading Innovations in Music Distribution

Century 1999: An Ideal Husband

(June 23, 2018)

An Ideal Husband. Oliver Parker. 1999. How weird. I can’t find the DVD for this film, or any of the other four I ripped on the same day… I must have… put them… somewhere.. But. Hm. what’s the expression to describe this… “Aggressively pedestrian”? “Excessively standard”? Ever single shot here is a shot you’ve seen, … Continue reading Century 1999: An Ideal Husband

Century 1996: Star Trek 8: First Contact

(June 23, 2018)

Star Trek 8: First Contact. Jonathan Frakes. 1996. Oops! Another Star Trek film. I guess my stacks of DVDs were pretty light on 90s films… I remember this as being much better than it is. It’s got the best Star Trek villains, the Borg, but somehow this film manages to strip away many of the … Continue reading Century 1996: Star Trek 8: First Contact

Century 1995: Rendez-vouz in Paris

(June 16, 2018)

Rendez-vouz in Paris. Éric Rohmer. 1995. Eric Rohmer was a director I was totally and utterly unaware of until a couple of years ago when I bought one of his films on a whim in a DVD shop somewhere. Mostly because of his name, which reminded me of Sax Rohmer. And it’s weird, because he … Continue reading Century 1995: Rendez-vouz in Paris

Century 1994: Trois Couleurs Blanc

(June 16, 2018)

Trois Couleurs Blanc. Krzysztof Kieslowski. 1994. This is one of the oldest DVDs I have, I think. I remember buying the box set while on holiday in London in the 90s. And somehow it’s never felt vitally urgent to watch these films, so it’s taken me almost 20 years to watch the trilogy. I have … Continue reading Century 1994: Trois Couleurs Blanc

Century 1991: Poison

(June 16, 2018)

Poison. Todd Haynes. 1991. Todd Haynes have done so few films. If I’m reading imdb correctly, this is his first one (from 1991), and he’s only done six more, which isn’t a lot of films per decade. And it’s not like his movies haven’t been successful… It’s weird. I like all his films (although I … Continue reading Century 1991: Poison

Century 1990: Alice

(June 15, 2018)

Alice. Woody Allen. 1990. This is a Woody Allen film from after I stopped watching him (I think I stopped the year before, growing tired of watching film after film concerning the problems of rich people in Manhattan), so I’m curious as to what he’s up to now, then. Aaaaand… it turns out to be … Continue reading Century 1990: Alice

Century 1989: Rosalie Goes Shopping

(June 15, 2018)

Rosalie Goes Shopping. Percy Adlon. 1989. This is one of the less-than-handful of films from the Percy Adlon DVD box set I bought that I can actually watch (most of the rest are in German without subtitles in any language I understand), but, oh, what a film. I remember watching this when it was new … Continue reading Century 1989: Rosalie Goes Shopping

New Music

(June 15, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Century 1988: Pee Wee’s Christmas Special

(June 10, 2018)

Pee Wee’s Christmas Special. Wayne Orr. 1988. OK, I’m on today’s nth cocktail, but I think this might be the best TV thing ever shown anywhere ever. Pee Wee has gotten an amazing number of amazing stars to appear on his special (Grace Jones, k. d. lang, Cher, Whoopi Goldberg), but it’s still the same … Continue reading Century 1988: Pee Wee’s Christmas Special

Century 1987: September

(June 9, 2018)

September. Woody Allen. 1987. Hm… what was the film that made me stop watching the yearly Woody Allen film? I don’t think it was this one… Perhaps it was one a couple of years later? Crimes and Misdemeanors? I don’t recall. But I do remember why I stopped watching his films: I was sitting in … Continue reading Century 1987: September

Century 1986: Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home

(June 9, 2018)

Worst. Punk. Ever. Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home. Leonard Nimoy. 1986. OK, we’re firmly in the 80s now. Instead of the crew of the Enterprise having extremely shiny faces now (a typical 70s thing), everybody has thoroughly powdered skin now. All matte. I did watch this film in the 80s, and the only thing … Continue reading Century 1986: Star Trek 4: The Voyage Home

Flowers

(June 9, 2018)

For the first time ever, I’ve bought annuals, because I thought the balcony thing with the rose bushes looked a bit on the sparse side. I.e., 90% soil. I may have gone slightly overboard. The other one is a bit more reasonable. The ivy things will hopefully cover the soil and extend downwards while the … Continue reading Flowers

Century 1985: Spies Like Us

(June 8, 2018)

Spies Like Us. John Landis. 1985. It was this one or The Purple Rose of Cairo, which I don’t have any positive memories of. This is such a confusing movie. It has all the hallmarks of a zany crazy comedy, but there are like no jokes here, and the few jokes that are identifiable as … Continue reading Century 1985: Spies Like Us

Century 1984: Broadway Danny Rose

(June 8, 2018)

Broadway Danny Rose. Woody Allen. 1984. Yeah, OK, for 1983 it was this is The Search For Spock and I threw the dice and I went for this one. Allen had like an Imperial period where he could do no wrong, and this is towards the end of that period. And when he’s on screen … Continue reading Century 1984: Broadway Danny Rose

Century 1983: The Man With Two Brains

(June 8, 2018)

The Man With Two Brains. Carl Reiner. 1983. Oh my Emacs! This is so stupid. In the best way possible. I must have seen this before at some point, because so many scenes were familiar, like the Hufhurr thing, but it’s been a while. And I guess a lot of the jokes haven’t aged well … Continue reading Century 1983: The Man With Two Brains

Century 1982: Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan

(June 8, 2018)

Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan. Nicholas Meyer. 1982. I was going to watch Der Stand der Dinge by Wim Wenders, but my DVD turned out to just have German subtitles. *sigh* It seems to be a current theme with European films. So I have a choice between another Woody Allen film and this. … Continue reading Century 1982: Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan

Century 1981: Reds

(June 2, 2018)

Reds. Warren Beatty. 1981. Most films I have on my shelf of unseen films I can pretty much figure out why I’ve bought. This one, I have no idea. Did somebody recommend it to me? This is such a 70s film, and not in a bad way. If I had to make a guess at … Continue reading Century 1981: Reds

Farmer Lars

(June 2, 2018)

The last couple of years have had sucky summers so I kinda neglected the balcony. When gardeners go missing, nature happens: I have no idea what’s growing there, but it’s kinda stingey and I certainly didn’t plant it. So it’s a weed of some kind, but not the fun kind. So I basically ripped out … Continue reading Farmer Lars

Century 1980: Stardust Memories

(June 2, 2018)

Stardust Memories. Woody Allen. 1980. My plan was to watch Céleste by Percy Adlon for 1980. I’ve been looking for a collection of his films forever, because the few films of his I’ve seen I think range from great to wonderful (Zuckerbaby, Rosalie Goes Shopping, Salmonberries, Bagdad Cafe), and I wanted to watch the rest … Continue reading Century 1980: Stardust Memories

Century 1979: Die Patriotin

(June 1, 2018)

Die Patriotin. Alexander Kluge. 1979. In a weird way, what this film reminds me most of is The Last of England by Derek Jarman. They are stylistically very far apart, but there’s something in the punk approach to talking about larger issues that seems to connect them. Jarman’s film is mesmerising; this isn’t up there … Continue reading Century 1979: Die Patriotin

Century 1978: Interiors

(June 1, 2018)

Interiors. Woody Allen. 1978. Oh, right, this is Woody Allen’s first Bergman rip-off. I mean, his first drama film. I honestly thought this was going to be better. And the cinematography is totes amazeballs: The subdued colour scheme and the unshowy angles. It’s so calm and understated. But I feel that basically all the actors … Continue reading Century 1978: Interiors

Century 1977: The Duellists

(May 26, 2018)

The Duellists. Ridley Scott. 1977. I had to choose between watching the bluray of Eraserhead or this (both made in 1977), and I chose this. It’s the film Ridley Scott directed before Alien and then Blade Runner, both of which are er rather good. (I especially love Alien.) So I was curious as to what … Continue reading Century 1977: The Duellists

Century 1975: Love and Death

(May 26, 2018)

Love and Death. Woody Allen. 1975. Woody Allen is terribly controversial at the moment, but this is an incredibly funny film. Diane Keaton is perfection and the one-liners keep on coming at you. Not to mention all the physical comedy. It does tend to lose its steam with some regularity, and the standup-derived bits don’t … Continue reading Century 1975: Love and Death

Home Renovations

(May 26, 2018)

I’m not er very well versed in the mysteries of balcony furniture. But I bought this slatted thing years ago and it’s gotten sadder every year. And not it looks like this: Something had to be done! So I rummaged around in the Cupboard of Mysteries and found this: That I’m pretty sure I’ve never … Continue reading Home Renovations

Concerts in Oslo

(May 26, 2018)

I maintain a site that list concerts in Oslo. In Facebook’s continuing war on its users, the events API was discontinued without warning a month ago. (That is, they may allow access to some apps after doing an individual review, but somehow I suspect that allowing access to a service that tries to drive foot … Continue reading Concerts in Oslo

Century 1974: The Cars That Ate Paris

(May 26, 2018)

The Cars That Ate Paris. Peter Weir. 1974. I’ve been cocktailing from this very old book, but I think I’m ready to move on to another book now. Oldee-tymey cocktails seem basically to be random combinations of boozes with very little finesse. I feel the need for less booze and more mixers. Anyway! This is … Continue reading Century 1974: The Cars That Ate Paris

Useful Consumer Review

(May 26, 2018)

Some weeks ago I bought this Levimoon lamp. I didn’t really think it was going to work or anything, but hey: Unfortunately, despite being totally cool and fun, it makes a “BzbbbzbbzzHhghghzzbz” sound after it’s been switched on for about two minutes, so it’s a crapgadget instead of a useful lamp. And getting the moon … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Century 1973: World on a Wire

(May 25, 2018)

World on a Wire. Rainer Werner Fassbinder. 1973. I am no Fassbinder connoisseur, but I’ve seen my share. But I’m pretty sure this is a pretty abnormal Fassbinder film. On the other hand, aren’t they all? But this is sci-fi flick of sorts, and I don’t think that’s really his metier, is it? It’s like … Continue reading Century 1973: World on a Wire

Century 1972: Slaughterhouse Five

(May 25, 2018)

Slaughterhouse Five. George Roy Hill. 1972. Hey! I read this book when I was a teenager. And that was in the previous century! I’m amazed at how many scenes are familiar to me still, so it made a huge impression, apparently. Some of the scenes (like when the guy started talking about the dog and … Continue reading Century 1972: Slaughterhouse Five

Nice Vinyl

(May 25, 2018)

Zola Jesus’ album Okovi was one of the best albums released in 2017, so now there’s a remix/additions album out, and it’s on totes groovey vinyl: How pretty! Sounds great, too. And for some reason, Norman Records sent me a signed picture of Chris Carter in the same parcel: Thanks? It’s what I’ve always wanted? … Continue reading Nice Vinyl

Century 1971: Out 1: Noli me tangere

(May 20, 2018)

Out 1: Noli me tangere. Jacques Rivette. 1971. It’s a Saturday, and I should be working, but instead I’m watching this 12 or 13 hour movie from 1971. I’d read about it before, because it’s a pretty famous film (or perhaps infamous), and Carlotta released a really handsome collection of it on Bluray. 2K, but … Continue reading Century 1971: Out 1: Noli me tangere

Century 1970: The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes

(May 18, 2018)

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. Billy Wilder. 1970. What a strange and awkward film. Is Wilder going for a 40s comedy but updating it embarrassingly with a gay panic storyline? But it’s mostly just a cod-standard Sherlock Holmes story. Although slightly more irreverent than usual and not based on a Conan Doyle story. It’s … Continue reading Century 1970: The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes

Century 1966: Andrei Rublev

(May 13, 2018)

Andrei Rublev. Andrei Tarkovsky. 1966. This is officially the 13th best film ever. It’s got the most classic casting problem: The casting director is really hot on a certain type, so we get about twenty actors that look pretty much identical. So I’m spending most scenes waiting for somebody to mention the other characters by … Continue reading Century 1966: Andrei Rublev

New Music

(May 12, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Century 1964: Paris When It Sizzles

(May 11, 2018)

Paris When It Sizzles. Richard Quine. 1964. This cocktail was surprisingly delicious. The ingredients seem kinda meh, but all together they resulted in an amazing cocktail. Hay! I had two films from 1963 lined up, but it turned out that my DVDs of Les Carabiniers and Le petit soldat had no subtitles whatsoever, so that’s … Continue reading Century 1964: Paris When It Sizzles

Century 1959: Some Like It Hot

(May 11, 2018)

Some Like It Hot. Billy Wilder. 1959. Another Monroe film! This one’s pretty much on fleek. Can’t really fault it much, other than that I seem to remember the repartee being snappier? And I would guess that if I were to google around a bit I might find thought pieces about this being a transsexuals-as-predators-by-proxy … Continue reading Century 1959: Some Like It Hot

Century 1957: The Tarnished Angels

(May 6, 2018)

The Tarnished Angels. Douglas Sirk. 1957. Yay! Another Douglas Sirk film! I just watched the documentary on the DVD of There’s Always Tomorrow, and the was asked what his favourite film was (of his own), and he said that he doesn’t think like that. But he’d recently seen Tarnished Angels at a MoMa thing in … Continue reading Century 1957: The Tarnished Angels

Century 1956: There’s Always Tomorrow

(May 5, 2018)

Hm… is that the right aspect ratio? Isn’t the Earth supposed to be, like, round? Oh, that’s better! This is an anamorph DVD. You don’t see that very often – they usually just letterbox it, which means fewer pixels. Nice. There’s Always Tomorrow. Douglas Sirk. 1956. I’ve been looking forward to watching this movie: I’m … Continue reading Century 1956: There’s Always Tomorrow

Century 1955: The Seven Year Itch

(May 5, 2018)

The Seven Year Itch. Billy Wilder. 1955. I’ve seen this before, of course, but it’s been a while, I think. I wondered whether I would find it creepy this time over. I mean, it’s an entire film about some nerd creeping on Marilyn Monroe. And there certainly are some icky scenes in here, but Monroe … Continue reading Century 1955: The Seven Year Itch

Century 1954: La Strada

(May 4, 2018)

La Strada. Federico Fellini. 1954. What an odd film. Fellini’s later film are more overtly artificial, but here it’s unclear what the panto-like performance of Gelsomina is meant to convey. Is she supposed to be 14? Slightly er naive? Why does she shift from being naive to knowing so often? Why is she blond(e)? Nobody … Continue reading Century 1954: La Strada

Century 1952: Jack and the Beanstalk

(May 4, 2018)

Jack and the Beanstalk. Jean Yarbrough. 1952. Hey! Abbott and Costello on the heels of Laurel and Hardy! Whenever some Oldz person writes about either of the pairs, they’ll make sure to mention how the other pair is better/worse. I can never remember which one they prefer. Probably Laurel and Hardy? Based on the two … Continue reading Century 1952: Jack and the Beanstalk

Century 1951: Utopia

(May 4, 2018)

Slapstick isn’t funny if it looks like the guy is really suffering Utopia. Léo Joannon. 1951. The DVD transfer is rather beat. I almost looks like it was mastered from a VHS copy? And Laurel and Hardy look really beat here, too. Hardy is sweating profusely in many scenes and Laurel looks like he’s at … Continue reading Century 1951: Utopia

Century 1950: At War With The Army

(May 4, 2018)

At War With The Army. Hal Walker. 1950. Hay! What happened to the 40s? I skipped it, because I’m amassing a collection of 40s film for a future nefarious blogging project. So we’re not in 1950, but with a comedy/musical/war film. With Jerry Lewis! Oh! This has the scene that Monty Python referred to with … Continue reading Century 1950: At War With The Army

Century 1939: The Flying Deuces

(May 3, 2018)

The Flying Deuces. A. Edward Sutherland. 1939. Hey! That’s a gap of several years since the previous film! I thought I had more 30s DVDs… And I sort of have, but they’re all part of various box sets, so I’m skipping them for this blog series, which is All Single DVDs All The Time. This … Continue reading Century 1939: The Flying Deuces

Century 1934: It Happened One Night

(May 1, 2018)

It Happened One Night. Frank Capra. 1934. Uh-up. This one won the Oscars. But how bad can it be? It’s Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert, directed by Frank Capra, so it should be, like, good. But it’s not. It all feels like a creeper rapey thing: Gable pursued Gilbert with a ferocity and inevitability that’s … Continue reading Century 1934: It Happened One Night

Century 1933: This Day and Age

(April 30, 2018)

This Day and Age. Cecil B. DeMille. 1933. I thought they said that teenagers were invented in the 50s! But here we are in the 30s and we’re rebelling without any cause whatsoever. Is this really from the 30s? Is imdb lying to me? Well, Wikipedia agrees with imdb, so let’s go with it… Anyway, … Continue reading Century 1933: This Day and Age

Century 1924: The Last Laugh

(April 30, 2018)

The Last Laugh. F.W. Murnau. 1924. Wow. That Murnau is going to go places. This is just so incredibly stylish and exciting to watch. Beautifully restored, too. It’s fascinating how well Murnau is able to tell the entire story with nary an intertitle: Virtually everything is conveyed through the acting, setting and cinematography. This involves … Continue reading Century 1924: The Last Laugh

Century 1921: The Phantom Carriage

(April 30, 2018)

The Phantom Carriage (Körkarlen). Victor Sjöström. 1921. This is one of Ingmar Bergman’s favourite films, and Bergman did a play based on the making of this film. Which explains the double feature on this DVD. Back in the pre-talkie days, Sweden was allegedly seen as a somewhat important film nation, and this was one of … Continue reading Century 1921: The Phantom Carriage

Century 1918: Hearts of the World

(April 29, 2018)

Hearts of the World. D.W. Griffith. 1918. Hey, it’s the first post of the new movie blog series hopefully taking me from 1918 to 2018. By skipping some years. D. W. Griffith is a very controversial director, of course, but Lillian Gish is Lillian Gish. This is an awfully confusing movie. Mostly because I thought … Continue reading Century 1918: Hearts of the World

Century

(April 28, 2018)

Or rather: Leftovers. I was tidying the DVD stacks (rooting out doubles and the like), and it occurred to me that I should probably watch all this stuff at some point or other. While going through the discs, I noted that the oldest unseen movie I have is from 1918… And this year is 2018… … Continue reading Century

Bustin’ Out

(April 27, 2018)

So I was watching the newish Ghostbusters (the one from 2016) on 4K Bluray (it’s a pretty funny film; a couple of the scenes had me in stitches, but it’s got pacing problems, and too many of the jokes didn’t land), and it looks like this: I mean, it’s just a normal very-wide-screen film (2.4:1, … Continue reading Bustin’ Out

Dear Interweb

(April 21, 2018)

I was listening to an old mix tape the other day, and I happened upon this song: I can’t for the life of me figure out who this song might be by.  Shazam doesn’t recognise it and I can’t find any of the text snippets on Google (“dreams of what could be if you love … Continue reading Dear Interweb

mpv Is Nice

(April 20, 2018)

I’ve been watching movies and TV using an Emacs interface since 2004, according to the movie.el file.  Under the hood, though, I’ve hacked away at mplayer to make it do what I want, which includes a convenient way to switch audio outputs and output progress info so that I can store that to restart the … Continue reading mpv Is Nice

New Music

(April 17, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

87 Bergman Things Redux

(March 30, 2018)

When I embarked upon my majestic Ingmar Bergman journey (ahem) there basically were two reasons for doing so: 1) I really wanted to, and c) it’s silly, and XIV), this box set had been released: I thought it was a complete collection, but it’s basically half his output. I’ve seen most of Bergman’s films before, … Continue reading 87 Bergman Things Redux

BTLXXXVII 2004: Bergman Island

(March 29, 2018)

Bergman Island. Marie Nyreröd. 2004. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This is basically a long interview with Bergman. Apparently these filmmakers were the first who was given access to film at Bergman’s home at the Färö island, and it’s a rather fabulous place. But this is not a completely successful documentary. It seems to want to wring too much … Continue reading BTLXXXVII 2004: Bergman Island

BTLXXXVI 2003: Behind Saraband

(March 29, 2018)

Yes, he’s painting the leaves with yellow paint to make it look more like autumn. Behind Saraband (I Bergmans regi). Torbjörn Ehrnvall. 2003. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This is the “making of” documentary from Saraband, Bergman’s final film (both as a director and a writer). He’s a very spry 85 year old here. Still a very hands on, … Continue reading BTLXXXVI 2003: Behind Saraband

BTLXXXV 2003: Saraband

(March 29, 2018)

Saraband. Ingmar Bergman. 2003. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Bergman’s winding down of his career over several decades is deliberate and well-directed: He said goodbye to directing films with his most successful production Fanny & Alexander (a tribute to his grandmother); his final film script was Faithless (where he sort of apologised for his life); he wound down his … Continue reading BTLXXXV 2003: Saraband

BTLXXXIV 1978: The Making of Autumn Sonata

(March 29, 2018)

The Making of Autumn Sonata. Ingmar Bergman. 1978. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. This bluray showed up in my mailbox the other day, and I was all “wat” because I’ve already seen Autumn Sonata. But after ripping it I recalled that the reason I bought it was that there’s a huge “making of” film included: It’s three and a … Continue reading BTLXXXIV 1978: The Making of Autumn Sonata

BTLXXXIII 2000: The Image Makers

(March 28, 2018)

The Image Makers (Bildmakarna). Ingmar Bergman. 2000. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This is the TV version of what Bergman wanted to be his final theatre staging. If you think “TV theatre”, this is it: It has an aesthetic that harks back to (or emulates perfectly) the first wave of “TV theatre” in the 60s and 70s when they … Continue reading BTLXXXIII 2000: The Image Makers

BTLXXXII 2000: Faithless

(March 28, 2018)

Faithless (Trolösa). Liv Ullmann. 2000. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Another film directed by Liv Ullmann, but this time without Sven Nykvist. It’s a film about making a story, and also about that story. It’s a fun way to approach this story, but it’s a pretty harsh self-portrait Bergman’s painted of himself. (Assuming that the young asshole of a … Continue reading BTLXXXII 2000: Faithless

BTLXXXI 1997: Behind In the Presence of a Clown

(March 25, 2018)

Behind In the Presence of a Clown (I sällskap med en clown). unknown. 1997. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Geeze. The “making of” films of Bergman’s films in the 80s and 90s are so fascinating. This is another fly-on-the-wall thing where we follow the taping (it’s TV) of the movie, and it’s pretty great. I didn’t know that Bergman … Continue reading BTLXXXI 1997: Behind In the Presence of a Clown

BTLXXX 1997: In the Presence of a Clown

(March 25, 2018)

In the Presence of a Clown (Larmar och gör sig till). Ingmar Bergman. 1997. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Bergman continues his stories about his family (more fictional than ever). This time it’s more about his uncle Carl (played by the same guy who did the part starting with Fanny & Alexander, so it’s his fourth film in this … Continue reading BTLXXX 1997: In the Presence of a Clown

BTLXXIX 1996: Harald & Harald

(March 24, 2018)

Harald & Harald. Ingmar Bergman. 1996. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This is a satirical political short (all unusual things for Bergman) about a text produced by the Ministry of Culture in Sweden. It’s funny, but I don’t have the context here, so I’m slightly lost. Here’s a typical sentence they’re reading and making fun of: “The theatre is … Continue reading BTLXXIX 1996: Harald & Harald

BTLXXVIII 1996: Private Confessions

(March 24, 2018)

Private Confessions (Enskilda samtal). Liv Ullmann. 1996. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. I couldn’t find this film anywhere: Not on Amazon, not Netflix, not nowhere, so I torrented it. And the torrent turned out to be with Spanish dialogue. *sigh* But then it turns out that some kind person has put the entire thing on Youtube. Thank you. Pernilla … Continue reading BTLXXVIII 1996: Private Confessions

BTLXXVII 1995: The Last Gasp

(March 23, 2018)

The Last Gasp (Sista skriket). Ingmar Bergman. 1995. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. The first ten minutes is documentary: Bergman shows us clips from old Swedish films (pre 1920) and tells us a bit about the people that made the films. And then we get a one act TV play where Bergman imagines a meeting between two of these … Continue reading BTLXXVII 1995: The Last Gasp

BTLXXVI 1992: The Best Intentions

(March 23, 2018)

The Best Intentions (Den goda viljan). Bille August. 1992. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. The copy I had of this film didn’t work, so I had to watch it via Amazon Prime, and it turns out to have two levels of subtitling in English: One from the theatrical version (burned into the film) and one for the hard of … Continue reading BTLXXVI 1992: The Best Intentions

Flashair, Emacs and Me

(March 23, 2018)

My blogging methodology is that I 1) open an Emacs Message buffer, write stuff, and then 2) take pictures of stuff (mostly comics), wanting to have those images appear right where I’m typing. This is a solved issued with Flashair, PyFlashAero and watch-directory.el, but I thought that it sucked that there were so many moving … Continue reading Flashair, Emacs and Me

BTLXXV 1993: The Bacchae

(March 17, 2018)

The Bacchae (Backanterna). Ingmar Bergman. 1993. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Bergman had first staged this opera to great acclaim at the Stockholm opera. This TV version is, as usual with Bergman, hugely reworked. And between the acts we get a five minute lecture about Dionysus. Anyway, it’s trey fab, especially the first act. I think it loses some … Continue reading BTLXXV 1993: The Bacchae

BTLXXIV 1992: Sunday’s Children

(March 16, 2018)

Sunday’s Children (Söndagsbarn). Daniel Bergman. 1992. ⭐⭐★★★★. This film is based on a script by Ingmar Bergman (which is again based on a chapter of his autobiography Laterna Magica). It’s about Bergman’s fraught relationship with his father, and it’s directed by Bergman’s son Daniel. It’s like Bergman-o-rama. The most amazing thing about this film is … Continue reading BTLXXIV 1992: Sunday’s Children

BTLXXIII 1992: Before Madame de Sade

(March 16, 2018)

Before Madame de Sade (Inför Markisinnan de Sade). 1992. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This is an interview that was shown before Madame de Sade on Swedish TV, so I should probably have watched it first, but I hate knowing stuff about things I’m going to see, so I didn’t. Hah! Bergman mostly talks about Mishima and not so … Continue reading BTLXXIII 1992: Before Madame de Sade

BTLXXII 1992: Madame de Sade

(March 16, 2018)

Madame de Sade (Markisinnan de Sade). Ingmar Bergman. 1992. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. This is the TV version of Mishima’s play that Bergman had staged at several theatres. It looks like it’s been somewhat reworked for TV: It’s by no means just a filmed version of the stage version. I got my copy off of teh torrenz, and … Continue reading BTLXXII 1992: Madame de Sade

BTLXXI 1986: The Blessed Ones

(March 15, 2018)

The Blessed Ones (De två saliga). Ingmar Bergman. 1986. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. Bergman ended his film career with Fanny & Alexander, but after Bergman’s previous TV film was upscaled from 16mm to 32mm and shown in theatres anyway, he apparently decided to make sure this never happened again by doing his first TV movie on video. (He’d … Continue reading BTLXXI 1986: The Blessed Ones

BTLXX 1983: Ingmar Bergman Bids Farewell to Film

(March 15, 2018)

Ingmar Bergman Bids Farewell to Film (Ingmar Bergman tar farväl av filmenb). Nils-Petter Sundgren. 1983. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Hey! Another documentary following Fanny & Alexander. The previous one was a fly-on-the-wall “making of”, and it was absolutely brilliant. This one is basically a guy interviewing Bergman about Fanny & Alexander for an hour. For what it is, … Continue reading BTLXX 1983: Ingmar Bergman Bids Farewell to Film

BTLXIX 1985: The Making of Fanny & Alexander

(March 14, 2018)

The Making of Fanny & Alexander (Dokument Fanny och Alexander ). Ingmar Bergman. 1985. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. I’ve seen more than a handful of “making of” films, but this is pretty unique. The documentary camera person is present throughout the filming and must have been just a few inches from the cinematographer. It really feels as if … Continue reading BTLXIX 1985: The Making of Fanny & Alexander

New Music

(March 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

BTLXVIII 1984: Karin’s Face

(March 10, 2018)

Karin’s Face (Karins ansikte). Ingmar Bergman. 1984. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This short is basically Bergman showing us some pictures from his family album, with an emphasis on pictures of his mom. I got my copy off of teh torrenzes. The accompanying music is sentimental in the extreme. Perhaps Bergman should have used a disco soundtrack instead. But … Continue reading BTLXVIII 1984: Karin’s Face

BTLXVII 1984: After the Rehersal

(March 10, 2018)

After the Rehersal (Efter repetitionen). Ingmar Bergman. 1984. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Bergman insists that he had meant for Fanny & Alexander to be his final theatrical release, but After the Rehearsal ended up being released for cinemas in the US anyway. That’s the version on this DVD, I think, because it looks super-grainy and very crackly and … Continue reading BTLXVII 1984: After the Rehersal

So Much 4K

(March 10, 2018)

I got a 4K TV a while back, but I haven’t had any 4K media. Until yesterday! A couple of months ago, the encryption on 4K Bluray media was partially broken. It’s not just rip’n’go as it is with DVDs and 2K Bluerays, but, basically, you can anyway. You just download this file that has … Continue reading So Much 4K

BTLXVI 1983: The School for Wives

(March 9, 2018)

The School for Wives (Hustruskolan). Ingmar Bergman. 1983. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This play was rehearsed by Alf Sjöberg (the director), but he died and Bergman decided (as a tribute) to film the piece for TV. So it’s the usual kind of Molière farce. It’s funny, of course and the actors are great. It’s very filmed theatre, though. … Continue reading BTLXVI 1983: The School for Wives

BTLXV 1982: Fanny & Alexander

(March 9, 2018)

Fanny & Alexander. Ingmar Bergman. 1982. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Bergman’s final “real” film, and like some of the preceding ones, there’s a TV series version and a shorter theatrical release. I’ve seen the TV version a couple of times before, so this time I’m watching the theatrical edit. And it’s restored gloriously by Criterion on Bluray. I … Continue reading BTLXV 1982: Fanny & Alexander

Fast Music, or: USB Is Weird

(March 7, 2018)

I have my music on an USB3 RAID5 consisting of three external disks connected to one of these, which isn’t a bad little computer: It’s has a 1.7GHz i7-3517UE (Ivy Bridge) CPU, so it’s small, but not horribly slow. But then one of the disks went AWOL and I thought that perhaps it was time … Continue reading Fast Music, or: USB Is Weird

BTLXIV 1980: From the Life of the Marionettes

(March 3, 2018)

From the Life of the Marionettes (Aus dem Leben dem Marionetten). Ingmar Bergman. 1980. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Bergman called this his only real German film: Conceived, written and filmed while Bergman was in his German exile. And it certainly feels like an outlier in Bergman’s career. For one, the audio quality is way beneath Bergman’s usual standards. … Continue reading BTLXIV 1980: From the Life of the Marionettes

BTLXIII 1979: Fårö Document 1979

(March 3, 2018)

Fårö Document 1979 (Fårö-dokument 1979). Ingmar Bergman. 1979. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This is Bergman’s second documentary film about the island he made his home and workplace: Fårö. (Which doesn’t mean “sheep island” even if it looks like it.) Most of his most successful films were filmed on the island, and he did two documentaries about people living … Continue reading BTLXIII 1979: Fårö Document 1979

BTLXII 1978: Autumn Sonata

(March 3, 2018)

Autumn Sonata (Höstsonaten). Ingmar Bergman. 1978. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Huh! I may not have seen this one before… It seems rather unfamiliar. In any case: Ingrid Bergman and Liv Ullmann. In a house. Drama. It’s wonderful. Bergman (the director) about Bergman (the actor): I discovered early into our rehearsals that to be understanding and offer a sympathetic … Continue reading BTLXII 1978: Autumn Sonata

BTLXI 1977: The Serpent’s Egg

(March 2, 2018)

The Serpent’s Egg. Ingmar Bergman. 1977. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. Hey! I watched this in 2014! And I’m not really looking forward to watching it again… but apparently I bought a new copy of the DVD for this blog series. Oh, well. Perhaps it’ll be better this time! This is Bergman’s first film after he fled (sort of) … Continue reading BTLXI 1977: The Serpent’s Egg

BTLX 1976: The Dance of the Damned Women

(March 2, 2018)

The Dance of the Damned Women (De fördömda kvinnornas dans). Ingmar Bergman. 1976. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Well, this is a strange one. It’s a wordless short, but it’s not a ballet per se. Before it starts, there’s a woman that explains that this is what we’re going to see, and that afterwards there will be a discussion, … Continue reading BTLX 1976: The Dance of the Damned Women

BTLIX 1976: Face to Face

(March 2, 2018)

Face to Face (Ansikte mot ansikte). Ingmar Bergman. 1976. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Originally a three hour TV series, “[i]t was edited down for theatrical releases for running times from 114 to 135 minutes.” And it stars Liv Ullmann and Erlend Josephson, so it’s very much similar to Scenes from a Marriage in that way. This one’s produced … Continue reading BTLIX 1976: Face to Face

The Ever-Shifting Sands of udev.rules

(February 25, 2018)

I use Telldus Tellstick to do home automation *cough* I mean control the lights: It’s an unassuming USB stick that implements a serial interface so that you can talk to it by just sending some strings to it and read the response. Ideal for Linux! Yes! But. You do want the device to show up … Continue reading The Ever-Shifting Sands of udev.rules

Useful Consumer Review

(February 25, 2018)

I’ve had the vast majority of the lights in my apt. controlled remotely (from Emacs, of course) for like a decade. It’s a flexible system built on Telldus Telstick receivers and transmitters, and Nexa wall sockets. But… Look at the un-pretty: Yes, those outlets are fugly. Fortunately quite a few of them are hidden behind … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

BTLVIII 1975: Silence! Action! The Magic Flute!

(February 24, 2018)

Silence! Action! The Magic Flute! (Tystnad! Tagning! Trollflöjten!). Katinka Faragó, Måns Reuterswärd. 1975. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This “making of” film of The Magic Flute is really interesting. It’s mostly fly-on-the-wall, and it’s really well edited and funny. “The Magic Flute isn’t just a risible fairy tale… But as a music play, it’s fairy tale/poem/dream.” This is one … Continue reading BTLVIII 1975: Silence! Action! The Magic Flute!

BTLVII 1975: The Magic Flute

(February 24, 2018)

The Magic Flute (Trollflöjten). Ingmar Bergman. 1975. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This was the most expensive TV production ever made in Sweden at the time, so there were the usual mutterings of “scandal”, but they sold the finished TV show to so many countries that it ended up earning the Swedish TV company a lot of money. This … Continue reading BTLVII 1975: The Magic Flute

BTLVI 1974: The Misanthrope

(February 24, 2018)

The Misanthrope (Misantropen). Ingmar Bergman. 1974. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This is a TV recording of a Danish theatre production of Moliere’s The Misanthrope directed by Bergman. It’s quite fun, and Ghita Nørby as Célimène is a blast to watch. I don’t think anyone would quite have guessed that it was a Bergman production if they hadn’t known, … Continue reading BTLVI 1974: The Misanthrope

BTLV 1973: Scenes from a Marriage

(February 23, 2018)

Scenes from a Marriage (Scener ur ett äktenskap). Ingmar Bergman. 1973. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. I’ve seen the TV series before, so I thought it might be fun to see the cinema version, too. I vaguely remember the TV series as being a very involving soap opera. The cinema version is apparently just an edited-down version (they lopped … Continue reading BTLV 1973: Scenes from a Marriage

BTLIV 1970: The Lie

(February 23, 2018)

The Lie. Alan Bridges. 1970. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This is the British version of The Lie, which I saw the Swedish version of last weekend. So we’re skipping back from 1973, way back to the misty days of 1970, when a bunch of European countries all recorded their own versions of the same Bergman script. I’m not … Continue reading BTLIV 1970: The Lie

BTLIII 1973: The Ghost Sonata

(February 23, 2018)

The Ghost Sonata (Spöksonaten). Ingmar Bergman. 1973. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. What a strange artefact. This is from the collection of the Bergman bootlegger, and it’s a video recording from 1973 of Bergman’s production of Strindberg’s The Ghost Sonata from a single camera placed on the balcony, apparently. There’s a lot of video ghosting whenever anybody moves, which … Continue reading BTLIII 1973: The Ghost Sonata

BTLII 1972: Cries & Whispers

(February 17, 2018)

Cries & Whispers (Viskningar och rop). Ingmar Bergman. 1972. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Unless I misremember the following films, Cries & Whispers is sort of the end of an era: It’s the last of the classic 60s films (even if we’re now in the 70s). After this, it all becomes a bit confusing, with TV productions (sometimes cut … Continue reading BTLII 1972: Cries & Whispers

Useful Consumer Review

(February 17, 2018)

You know when you’re measuring out things for baking? So you put a mixing bowl on the kitchen scale and then measure out 300g of sugar, and then you tare it back to zero, and then you’re going to pour 500g flour into the bowl, but after pouring some flour, the flour bag is empty, … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

BTLI 1970: The Lie

(February 17, 2018)

The Lie (Reservatet). Jan Molander. 1970. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This TV play (directed by Jan Molander from a script by Bergman) had its origin in the work with The Passion of Anna film: The script for that film apparently started off as this script, but then evolved into something very different, so Bergman gave the original script … Continue reading BTLI 1970: The Lie

Destruction!

(February 17, 2018)

I got a letter with this insert: “Received damaged from abroad”. Destruction! From Australia! Or… Was it pre-destroyed? Hm… Hm!

BTL 1971: The Touch

(February 14, 2018)

The Touch (Beröringen). Ingmar Bergman. 1971. ⭐⭐★★★★. The intention was to shoot The Touch in both English and Swedish. In an original version that doesn’t seem to exist anymore, English was spoken by those who were English-speaking and Swedish by those who were Swedes. I belive that it just possibly was slightly less unbearable than … Continue reading BTL 1971: The Touch

BTXLIX 1969: The Passion of Anna

(February 14, 2018)

The Passion of Anna (En passion). Ingmar Bergman. 1969. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Whaa? This film is not in 4:3? It’s more like… 16:11? At least the DVD is. And it’s in colour, too, but Bergman’s already done that. You kinda think of Bergman as being extremely distinctive and set in his own ways, but viewing his films … Continue reading BTXLIX 1969: The Passion of Anna

New Music

(February 12, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

BTXLVIII 1969: The Rite

(February 10, 2018)

The Rite (Riten). Ingmar Bergman. 1969. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Bergman had done a handful of things for TV before, but up until this one, they had all been theatre plays adapted for TV. This is his first “real” film for TV, and he apparently made it because he was fed up with how much time and effort … Continue reading BTXLVIII 1969: The Rite

BTXLVII 1968: Shame

(February 10, 2018)

Shame (Skammen). Ingmar Bergman. 1968. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Bergman goes political. It’s an incredible film, but Bergman was dissatisfied himself: In other words, we are talking about poorly constructed manuscript. The first half of the film is really nothing more than an endlessly drawn-out prologue that ought to have been over and done within ten minutes. What … Continue reading BTXLVII 1968: Shame

BTXLVI 2004: Hour of the Wolf: The Search for Sanity

(February 10, 2018)

Hour of the Wolf: The Search for Sanity. Greg Carson. 2004. ⭐⭐★★★★. This is the first Bergman film that was sold to distributors in the US before it was filmed, and as such the rights for the DVD are somehow in American hands. But that means that there’s a documentary featurette in English, edited together … Continue reading BTXLVI 2004: Hour of the Wolf: The Search for Sanity

BTXLV 1968: Hour of the Wolf

(February 9, 2018)

Hour of the Wolf (Vargtimmen). Ingmar Bergman. 1968. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. After the Tour de France of Persona, Hour of the Wolf is a bit of a let-down. The scenes seem to carry no weight. Instead of the shots being filled to the brim with (possible) meaning, they’re kinda just… there… here. But it’s a hard act … Continue reading BTXLV 1968: Hour of the Wolf

BTXLIV 1967: Stimulantia

(February 9, 2018)

Stimulantia (“Daniel” section). Ingmar Bergman. 1967. ⭐⭐★★★★. The mid-60s wasn’t Bergman’s busiest period, film-wise. All These Women in 64, Persona in 66, and Hour of the Wolf in 68. Well, OK, for anybody else, that’s a quite impressive schedule, but Bergman had basically done about two films per year until now, so… Anyway! This is … Continue reading BTXLIV 1967: Stimulantia

BTXLIII 1966: Persona

(February 9, 2018)

Persona. Ingmar Bergman. 1966. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Of all of Bergman’s films, this is probably the one that has launched the most doctoral theses. So I’m going to refrain from my usual trivial nattering and just say: It’s kinda good, innit? This post is part of the 87 Bergman Things series.

BTXLII 1964: All These Women

(February 4, 2018)

All These Women (För inte tala om alla dessa kvinnor). Ingmar Bergman. 1964. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This is Bergman’s directorial colour film debut. Weirdly enough, it’s his second colour film script, and both of them are co-written with Erland Josephson. It’s like they got together to write scripts for colour adaptation… This is also Bergman’s final comedy. … Continue reading BTXLII 1964: All These Women

BTXLI 1963: The Silence

(February 4, 2018)

The Silence (Tystnaden). Ingmar Bergman. 1963. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Bergman thought that this would be another box office disaster (like Winter Light), but instead it became the producer’s (Svensk Filmindustri) biggest movie so far. And it’s not difficult to agree with Bergman (it’s about two women and a boy in a hotel in a country where they’re … Continue reading BTXLI 1963: The Silence

BTXL 1963: Wood Painting

(February 3, 2018)

Trämålning. Lennart Olsson. 1963. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This is a rather weird one. It’s a short-ish TV movie (directed by Lennart Olsson) based on the old one-act play that Bergman earlier had developed into The Seventh Seal. (Yes. Very confusing.) The actors are variable, but Ulla Akselson (as the witch) is great. I got a copy of … Continue reading BTXL 1963: Wood Painting

BTXXXIX 1963: A Dream Play

(February 3, 2018)

A Dream Play (Ett drömspel). Ingmar Bergman. 1963. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Boo! Uno Herring is back in this TV play. I still can’t really understand what he’s saying: His diction is so … strange. Some sounds are half-swallowed, and there’s the occasional extra syllable that shouldn’t really be in that word. So it’s subtitle time again, which … Continue reading BTXXXIX 1963: A Dream Play

BTXXXVIII 1961: Behind Winter Light

(February 2, 2018)

Behind Winter Light (Bakomfilm Nattvärdsgästerna). Ingmar Bergman. 1961. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. I’m really starting to enjoy the commentaries by whoever that is on these “behind the scenes” shorts. They’re terse, but to the point. This is 3x longer than any of the previous films, though, and perhaps it would have been an idea to give her somebody … Continue reading BTXXXVIII 1961: Behind Winter Light

BTXXXVII 1963: Winter Light

(February 2, 2018)

Winter Light (Nattvardsgästarna). Ingmar Bergman. 1963. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. 1963 was a particularly busy year for Bergman: I’ve got five things from that year scheduled here. There’s nothing in 1962, though, so perhaps there were just a lot of stuff percolating… Bergman turned down a 24x pay raise from MGM and stayed in Sweden. Watching this straight … Continue reading BTXXXVII 1963: Winter Light

BTXXXVI 1961: The Pleasure Garden

(February 2, 2018)

The Pleasure Garden (Lustgården). Alf Kjellin. 1961. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. Bergman thought it was about time that Svensk Filmindustri did a proper colour film, but he didn’t have time to do it himself. So he co-wrote the screenplay (with a pseudonymous credit) and left Alf Kjellin to direct it. It was pretty much universally panned at the … Continue reading BTXXXVI 1961: The Pleasure Garden

Cornucopia

(January 31, 2018)

I ordered a couple of mini-comics from Quimby’s Bookstore, and I got an amusingly large stack of … stuff. At least I think all this was from Quimby’s; I unpacked a lot of stuff at the same time. I can’t think of where else this would come from. First of all, the two comics I … Continue reading Cornucopia

BTXXXV 1961: Through a Glass Darkly

(January 27, 2018)

Through a Glass Darkly (Såsom i en spegel). Ingmar Bergman. 1961. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Harriet Andersson is back! After the relationship with Bergman ended (and Bergman started one with her sister), she’d been gone from Bergman’s films for some years. Along with Gunnar Björnstrand and Max von Sydow, this little film has an extremely solid cast. Even … Continue reading BTXXXV 1961: Through a Glass Darkly

BTXXXIV 1960: The Devil’s Eye

(January 27, 2018)

The Devil’s Eye (Djävulens öga). Ingmar Bergman. 1960. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. The studio had bought the rigths to a dusty Danish comedy called The Return of Don Juan. Dymling and I entered into a shameful agreement. I wanted to direct The Virgin Spring, which he detested. He wanted me to direct The Devil’s Eye which I detested. … Continue reading BTXXXIV 1960: The Devil’s Eye

BTXXXIII 1960: Storm Weather

(January 27, 2018)

Storm Weather (Oväder). Ingmar Bergman. 1960. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This is a TV play shown on the occasion of Strindberg’s 111th birthday or something equally spurious. It features nobody from Bergman’s usual coterie of actors, so perhaps they’re all taken from Bergman’s theatre ensemble? As theatre actors most of them deliver their lines very crisply and precisely, … Continue reading BTXXXIII 1960: Storm Weather

BTXXXII 1960: The Virgin Spring

(January 26, 2018)

The Virgin Spring (Jungfrukällan). Ingmar Bergman. 1960. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This is Bergman’s first Oscar win? It’s not difficult to guess why (spoiler warning: God turns out to be real; i.e., instant US appeal). Even so, it’s rather good. Sven Nykvist is back as the cinematographer, and that really shows. Every scene is a perfect little tableau. … Continue reading BTXXXII 1960: The Virgin Spring

BTXXXI 1958: Behind The Magician

(January 26, 2018)

Behind The Magician (Bakomfilm Ansiktet). Ingmar Bergman. 1958. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Same narrator as the previous “behind” featurettes. This one’s quite informative. This post is part of the 87 Bergman Things series.

BTXXX 1958: The Magician

(January 26, 2018)

The Magician (Ansiktet). Ingmar Bergman. 1958. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. We’ve now reached the point where a Bergman film can be immediately identified by just looking at any random frame from his movies, so I guess we’ve gone past the “early” bit of his career. It’s all so programmatically present in this one: All the characters being metaphors … Continue reading BTXXX 1958: The Magician

BTXXIX 1958: Brink of Life

(January 26, 2018)

Brink of Life (Nära livet). Ingmar Bergman. 1958. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. At a time when very few men had ever been present at an actual birth, Brink of Life came as a shock for many viewers. The newspapers reported people fainting (the record being set in Bergen in Norway, where eight people passed out during the same … Continue reading BTXXIX 1958: Brink of Life

The Best Countries

(January 24, 2018)

A while back, I watched a film and drank a cocktail from each country on Earth, but it occurred to me just now that I had never done any visualisation of where on Earth the good movies and drinks are. Since I had the data semi-readible available, I whipped up some charts. Here’s the film … Continue reading The Best Countries

The Complete Crumb Comics

(January 23, 2018)

Robert Crumb is one of the most highly regarded American comics creators, but the past few years has seen both a backlash against his perceived sexism and downright revulsion towards his comics by younger people, as well as a free-floating discussion over teh comix blogs about how Crumb isn’t seen as a major influence over … Continue reading The Complete Crumb Comics

BTXXVIII 1958: The Venetian Woman

(January 21, 2018)

The Venetian Woman (Venetianskan). Ingmar Bergman. 1958. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. Bergman was so productive these years that establishing a chronology isn’t trivial. But this TV production seems to have been released before his next feature film, but I have no idea which one was made first. ¯_(ツ)_/¯ Anyway, it’s Bergman’s second TV production. It was apparently shown … Continue reading BTXXVIII 1958: The Venetian Woman

BTXXVII 1957: Mr. Sleeman is Coming

(January 21, 2018)

Mr. Sleeman is Coming (Herr Sleeman kommer). Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. This is Bergman’s first TV movie. It doesn’t seem to have gotten an official release, so I had to get it from teh torrenz. It’s a play filmed for TV (with multiple cameras, I think). Bergman’s usual cohort of actors (Bibi Andersson, Max von … Continue reading BTXXVII 1957: Mr. Sleeman is Coming

BTXXVI 1957: Nattens ljus

(January 20, 2018)

Nattens ljus. Lars-Eric Kjellgren. 1957. ⭐⭐★★★★. I got this one from the Bergman Pirate. It’s not officially a Bergman film: He worked on the script, but is uncredited. Is this the only non-Bergman-directed film I’ve seen Gunnar Björnstrand in? And… he’s not as good here as I had come to expect. The entire film is … Continue reading BTXXVI 1957: Nattens ljus

BTXXV 1957: Behind Wild Strawberries

(January 20, 2018)

The narrator says “There’s me”. And if she’s the script girl, then that’s Katinka Faragó, according to imdb. Narrator identified! Possibly! Behind Wild Strawberries (Bakomfilm Smultronstället). Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. I still don’t know who’s doing the voice-over on these documentaries, but she seems fun. You don’t really get much information beyond what the actors’ … Continue reading BTXXV 1957: Behind Wild Strawberries

BTXXIV 1957: Wild Strawberries

(January 20, 2018)

Wild Strawberries (Smultronstället). Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Is this Bergman’s greatest commercial success, perhaps? It’s probably second to The Seventh Seal as “The Bergman Film”, though. It’s such a lovely and surprising film. It has a road movie structure where people fade in and out of the proceedings in a very pleasing manner. This post … Continue reading BTXXIV 1957: Wild Strawberries

BTXXIII 1956: Behind The Seventh Seal

(January 20, 2018)

Behind The Seventh Seal (Bakomfilm Det sjunde inseglet). Ingmar Bergman. 1956. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. The narrator on this short is the same as on the previous one, but I still don’t know who it is. Perhaps the script supervisor? The narration is very seat-of-the-pants: The narrator has obviously never seen the footage before, so she’s commenting on … Continue reading BTXXIII 1956: Behind The Seventh Seal

BTXXII 1957: The Seventh Seal

(January 20, 2018)

The Seventh Seal (Det sjunde inseglet). Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. This is probably the one film everybody thinks of when you mention Ingmar Bergman, right? Very serious, filled with symbolism and religious anguish. As pop-culture penetration of art film goes, nothing beats Death on the beach playing chess. And Max von Sydow, for the first … Continue reading BTXXII 1957: The Seventh Seal

All Ears 2018

(January 19, 2018)

BTXXI 1955: Smiles of a Summer Night

(January 19, 2018)

Smiles of a Summer Night (Sommarnattens leende). Ingmar Bergman. 1955. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. “A romantic comedy by Ingmar Bergman.” Bergman was depressed but needed money, so he made this little masterpiece, which was also his international break-through, I think. It won prizes in Cannes and everything. Gunnar Björnstrand’s glued-on comedy beard is rather disturbing, though. “The last … Continue reading BTXXI 1955: Smiles of a Summer Night

BTXX 1947: Woman Without a Face

(January 19, 2018)

Princess!? Such lighting. Woman Without a Face (Kvinna utan ansikte). Gustaf Molander. 1947. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. We’re diverging from the chronological Bergman thing again and skipping back from 1956 to 1947: To this Bergman-scripted, but Gustaf Molander-directed thing. It’s weird being back in this period again after the 1955-56 streak of mature-ish Bergman films. It’s all artifice … Continue reading BTXX 1947: Woman Without a Face

Further Trends in Packaging

(January 16, 2018)

I got a package today that had this mysterious item… Epic unpackaging: It’s a cassette! Inside a cardboard thingie! It’s the latest thing.

BTXIX 1954: Behind Dreams

(January 14, 2018)

Behind Dreams (Bakomfilm Kvinnodröm). Ingmar Bergman. 1954. ⭐⭐★★★★. This is the behind the scenes documentary for Dreams: The first one of these that were created for Bergman films. We get reminiscences by an unnamed female voice that says things like “that’s a lot of blurry images; I think those should be edited out”. It’s hard … Continue reading BTXIX 1954: Behind Dreams

BTXVIII 1955: Dreams

(January 13, 2018)

Dreams (Kvinnodröm). Ingmar Bergman. 1955. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. After the success of A Lesson in Love, you’d think that making the follow-up (with basically the same cast and crew) would be easy enough. But it just doesn’t have the same sparkle. While it isn’t as effortlessly brilliant as the previous movie, it does demonstrate that Bergman the … Continue reading BTXVIII 1955: Dreams

BTXVII 1954: A Lesson in Love

(January 13, 2018)

A Lesson in Love (En lektion i kärlek). Ingmar Bergman. 1954. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. Yay. Eva Dahlbeck and Gunnar Björnstrand (Sweden’s Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant) are back in this delicious comedy (which is Bergman’s first real comedy). Harriet Andersson does a wonderful performance as a tomboy 15-year-old, too. It’s a thoroughly entertaining film. This post is … Continue reading BTXVII 1954: A Lesson in Love

New Music

(January 11, 2018)

Music I’ve bought this month.

BTXVI 1953: Sawdust and Tinsel

(January 10, 2018)

Sawdust and Tinsel (Gycklarnas afton). Ingmar Bergman. 1953. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Finally cinematographer Sven Nykvist is on board (for part of the film). Unfortunately, he doesn’t return to the fold until 1960, I think… This film perhaps marks the beginning of the end of the end of the “Early Bergman” stretch of films? You’ve got Harriet Andersson … Continue reading BTXVI 1953: Sawdust and Tinsel

BTXV 1948: Eva

(January 10, 2018)

Eva. Gustaf Molander. 1948. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. This film didn’t arrive in time for its rightful place in this blog series. Shame! Shame! So cast your mind back from 1953 to the long gone past of 1948… This one is not directed by Bergman, but the script is by him and it’s based on one of his … Continue reading BTXV 1948: Eva

Footnotes*

(January 9, 2018)

I was reading the Fantagraphics collection of Zanardi by Andrea Pazienza tonight (it’s not very good; it’s like the stuff you’d stumble upon in European underground magazines in the 80s and be amused by for a couple of pages before you’d get annoyed by the incoherence and bored by the boorish humour and skimmed the … Continue reading Footnotes*

BTXIV 1953: Summer with Monika

(January 8, 2018)

Summer with Monika (Sommaren med Monika). Ingmar Bergman. 1953. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Another box office smash for Bergman, although this one was critically panned at the time. (And the American “version” (edited down and with added nudist camp shots) led to a trial: “Reporting on the case against the distributor, the Los Angeles Examiner quoted Judge Byron … Continue reading BTXIV 1953: Summer with Monika

BTXIII 1952: Secrets of Women

(January 8, 2018)

Secrets of Women (Kvinnors väntan). Ingmar Bergman. 1952. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. After an enforced break after the horrible This Can’t Happen Here, Bergman is back writing and directing this one, designed to be a people-pleasing comedy, because Bergman just couldn’t afford another box office bomb. I think it’s the first kinda real pure Bergman film. The dialogue … Continue reading BTXIII 1952: Secrets of Women

BTXII 1951: Breeze Ads

(January 8, 2018)

Breeze Ads (Reklamfilmer för Bris). Ingmar Bergman. 1951. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐. I got these ads as part of a haul from a Bergman bootlegger, but the quality is really bad. You can find much better quality footage here, for instance. This DVD looks like it has been through seven generations of RealVideo compression. These are pretty weird … Continue reading BTXII 1951: Breeze Ads

Watch Repair Guy

(January 7, 2018)

In my 20s, I bought a bunch of cheap but fun watches. While tidying up the other month, I came across the watch cache, and I thought it might be fun to start wearing them again. The batteries had all expired decades ago, of course, and taking them all to the watchmaker sounded kinda silly, … Continue reading Watch Repair Guy

BTXI 1951: Summer Interlude

(January 6, 2018)

Summer Interlude (Sommarlek). Ingmar Bergman. 1951. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Oh, right. This film was done before the horrible This Can’t Happen Here, but wasn’t released until a year after due to a strike and economic problems with the film studio. They’re extremely different films: While This Can’t Happen Here is probably the worst film Bergman ever did … Continue reading BTXI 1951: Summer Interlude

BTX 1950: This Can’t Happen Here

(January 6, 2018)

This Can’t Happen Here (Sånt händer inte här). Ingmar Bergman. 1950. ⭐★★★★★. This is a movie that apparently has never gotten a DVD release? I had to source it from teh torrentz, and it looks like it has its origin in a VHS copy. Perhaps it was shown on TV at one point? It’s a … Continue reading BTX 1950: This Can’t Happen Here

BTIX 1950: To Joy

(January 6, 2018)

To Joy (Till glädje). Ingmar Bergman. 1950. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. This is Bergman’s second writer/director credit, and it couldn’t be more different from his first one, Prison. As the title suggests, it’s basically a happy and nostalgic film, where the protagonist is an obvious and hapless stand-in for Bergman himself. It’s pretty funny. Bergman is pretty savage … Continue reading BTIX 1950: To Joy

BTVIII 1949: Thirst

(January 5, 2018)

Thirst (Törst). Ingmar Bergman. 1949. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. After the brilliant Prison completely bombed at the box office, Bergman is back to directing another movie written by somebody else. A bundle of actors from his previous film reappears here, though. It’s a surprisingly vigorous and amusing film: Bergman isn’t sulking after the less than stellar reception of … Continue reading BTVIII 1949: Thirst

BTVII 1949: Prison

(January 5, 2018)

Prison (Fängelse). Ingmar Bergman. 1949. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐★. Finally! A real Bergman film. This is the first of his films that’s both written (not based on a book/play) and directed by Bergman, and we basically get all his obsessions on a plate: Religion, injustice, evil, making movies, symbolism, Fraudianism, watching old movies. It’s the first of these … Continue reading BTVII 1949: Prison

BTVI 1948: Port of Call

(January 5, 2018)

Port of Call (Hamnstad). Ingmar Bergman. 1948. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Oh, it’s Bergman’s 100th birthday this year, so there’s supposed to be a bunch of retrospectives, re-releases and documentaries this year. I had no idea when I embarked upon my Bergmania… Anyway, this is a very strangely edited film. It’s like if the editor is off by … Continue reading BTVI 1948: Port of Call

Electric Cars

(January 1, 2018)

(Carl Barks, 1955.)

BTV 1948: Music in Darkness

(December 31, 2017)

Music in Darkness (Musik i mörker). Ingmar Bergman. 1948. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Once again, Birger Malmsten stars, and like Lorens Marmstedt allegedly adviced Bergman two movies ago, “You have to remember that Birger Malmsten is no Jean Gabin”. He still isn’t, but he’s perfectly nice if somewhat uninspiring. (I just had a peek at Bergmans filmography, and … Continue reading BTV 1948: Music in Darkness

BTIV 1947: A Ship Bound For India

(December 31, 2017)

A Ship Bound For India (Skepp till India land). Ingmar Bergman. 1947. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. You can say many things about this film, but you can’t really claim that the DVD transfer is very satisfactory. It’s grainy and uneven as fuck, but perhaps that just reflects the unrestored original film… As would come to be common in … Continue reading BTIV 1947: A Ship Bound For India

BTIII 1946: It Rains On Our Love

(December 30, 2017)

It Rains On Our Love (Det regnar på vår kärlek). Ingmar Bergman. 1946. ⭐⭐⭐⭐★★. Now we’re getting somewhere. This in a different league from the two previous films. It’s based on a play written by a Norwegian guy, but, still, it’s a pretty good story. Very time-appropriate. It’s got a nice flow, and Gunnar Björnstrand … Continue reading BTIII 1946: It Rains On Our Love

BTII 1946: Crisis

(December 30, 2017)

Crisis (Kris). Ingmar Bergman. 1946. ⭐⭐⭐★★★. Bergman’s directorial debut (if you don’t count the last scene of the previous film). The introductory voice-over presents the film as “an everyday play… almost a comedy”. According to Swedish Wikipedia, the production was almost shut down, but the studio head gave Bergman a second chance and restarted the … Continue reading BTII 1946: Crisis

BTI 1944: Torment

(December 29, 2017)

Torment (Hets). Alf Sjöberg. 1944. ⭐⭐★★★★. This is very much a young man’s film: It’s all about a sadistic Latin teacher and his hapless pupils. I’m just guessing, but I assume that it’s Bergman’s revenge on a specific teacher. This isn’t directed by Bergman, but Bergman wrote the script. It still looks a lot like … Continue reading BTI 1944: Torment

87 Bergman Things

(December 29, 2017)

Ingmar Bergman. There’s nobody more jolly, so I’ve long wanted to (re-)watch all his films. But every time I’ve poked around to find a convenient way to do that, I’ve been discouraged by the spotty way his filmography has been made available: One film here; three films on this box set; five on this (with … Continue reading 87 Bergman Things

My New Concert Blog

(December 20, 2017)

The Best Albums of 2017

(December 19, 2017)

This has been a kinda weird year of music for me. I’ve spent quite a lot of time resampling old vinyl and sampling old tapes, so I’ve listened to a lot less new music than usual. Nevertheless, here’s the list of the best music of 2017, determined by how many times I’ve listened to each … Continue reading The Best Albums of 2017

The Curious Case of Neon Lit

(December 18, 2017)

Cast your mind back to the early 90s: *biff* *bang* *pow* Comics aren’t for kids any more! After the amazing success (both commercially and critically) of Art Spiegelman’s first Maus volume, many publishers wanted to get in on the action. Literary power houses like Pantheon Books (a part of the Knopf/Doubleday/Random House publishing behemoth), Penguin … Continue reading The Curious Case of Neon Lit

A Carpenter Winter Redux

(December 17, 2017)

Compared to some of his peers (say, David Cronenberg or John Waters), John Carpenter doesn’t have a very distinct point of view. You can usually spot at Cronenberg or a Waters film from a mile away, while Carpenter is less distinctive. There are some technical things that Carpenter does have a hang-up on, though: He … Continue reading A Carpenter Winter Redux

ACW2010: The Ward

(December 17, 2017)

John Carpenter. The Ward. 2010. This is likely to be John Carpenter’s final movie: He’s said that he has no interest in doing any more of them because he’s retired. It would be fun to say that he went out on a major success, but, as usual, it bombed at the box office. It’s got … Continue reading ACW2010: The Ward

ACW2006: Pro-Life

(December 17, 2017)

John Carpenter. Pro-Life. 2006. This is the other Carpenter episode from the Masters of Horror Showtime TV series. It’s a lot, er, more TV-ey than the Cigarette Burns episode, but it’s still way grislier than there’s any point in being. I had to skip past some of the scenes. But I’m a wimp. The way … Continue reading ACW2006: Pro-Life

ACW2005: Cigarette Burns

(December 16, 2017)

John Carpenter. Cigarette Burns. 2005. This is an episode from the Showtime TV series “Masters of Horror”, which was an anthology horror series that received quite a lot of acclaim at the time. This episode isn’t super-Carpenterish: A lot of faffing about in Europe (with European actors) (or is it Canada?). It’s about a film … Continue reading ACW2005: Cigarette Burns

ACW2001: Ghosts of Mars

(December 15, 2017)

John Carpenter. Ghosts of Mars. 2001. Somehow Carpenter got decent funding for yet another movie after so many of them not making any back (except perhaps 20 years after on DVD). And this time it’s a sci-fi movie! Yay! And Carpenter managed to hire some pretty entertaining actors (Pam Grier, Natasha Henstridge, Clea DuVall, Joanna … Continue reading ACW2001: Ghosts of Mars

ACW1998: Vampires

(December 15, 2017)

“My vampires are savage creatures. There isn’t a second of brooding loneliness in their existence. They’re too busy ripping and tearing humans apart.” Right… John Carpenter. Vampires. 1998. Ah! A vampire film where the vampires are the bad guys! It’s been a long time since I’ve seen one of those… This is the goriest Carpenter … Continue reading ACW1998: Vampires

The Best Comics of 2017

(December 14, 2017)

Geez! December again. Anyway, I thought that this had been a pretty weak year for comics, but look at how many comics ended up in my “hm; that was pretty interesting” lil bookcaselet. And as an innovation this year: I also found room for comics that has a larger form factor! So much innovation. Let’s … Continue reading The Best Comics of 2017

ACW1996: Escape from LA

(December 13, 2017)

Debra Hill is back. John Carpenter. Escape from LA. 1996. Wow! Debra Hill is back as a producer! John Carpenter is known as a genre director, but this is the only sequel he’s done. He didn’t even direct any of the Halloween sequels. The highest-rated review on imdb says that it’s a misunderstood masterpieve but … Continue reading ACW1996: Escape from LA

New Music

(December 11, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month. The end of the Grand Sampling (of bootleg and rare tapes from the 90s).  It’s been fun revisiting the tapes, but it’s also nice that I can go back to listening to newer music again.

Useful Consumer Review

(December 11, 2017)

I’ve got most of the rooms in the apt. wired up for sound, but I’ve never managed to work up enough stamina to get the bathroom wired. So I’ve been using this Creative wireless blaster thingie for years and years, and it works OK. It sounds fine and it usually works. But it’s… kinda a … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

ACW1995: Village of the Damned

(December 10, 2017)

John Carpenter. Village of the Damned. 1995. Well, this isn’t a good movie, but it’s still got a kind of charm going. I’m not quite sure what that charm is, though. Carpenter isn’t an overtly distinctive director, but it’s obvious that he’s got… something… Even if it’s not really on display here much. This post … Continue reading ACW1995: Village of the Damned

ACW1994: In the Mouth of Madness

(December 9, 2017)

I might be slightly mad here, me. John Carpenter. In the Mouth of Madness. 1994. I have no idea whether this was a studio film or not. It has a mid-level budget (more than twice of any of Carpenter’s indie films), but it’s wild and wacky. It’s not really all that scary, but it keeps … Continue reading ACW1994: In the Mouth of Madness

ACW1993: Body Bags

(December 9, 2017)

John Carpenter. Body Bags. 1993. After the horrible (but high-budgeted) Memories of an Invisible Man, Carpenter retreated to TV (Showtime) and made this fun anthology horror show. He directed two of the bits himself (and acted as the “Crypt Keeper” like host for the show) and left the third for Tobe Hooper. This is the … Continue reading ACW1993: Body Bags

ACW1992: Memories of an Invisible Man

(December 9, 2017)

Oops. I seem to have the German bluray… But there’s an English soundtrack on there, too, so never mind. This looks like an incredibly 80s film. Yup. Even though it’s from 1992. Oh, well. He’s more 90s. John Carpenter. Memories of an Invisible Man. 1992. Oh, dead. Carpenter’s back making a studio film after two … Continue reading ACW1992: Memories of an Invisible Man

ACW1988: They Live

(December 8, 2017)

John Carpenter. They Live. 1988. It was a dystopia back when Carpenter made it, but it seems like a pretty romantic and optimistic future now. Anyway, there’s so much to like about this film. The unfathomably stupid protagonist and the wildly corny “pithy sayings” he comes up with; the drag-out professional wrestling match in that … Continue reading ACW1988: They Live

ACW1987: Prince of Darkness

(December 8, 2017)

John Carpenter. Prince of Darkness. 1987. After the unpleasant experience with releasing Big Trouble in Little China (the studio wanted Indiana Jones, which that film definitely wasn’t, so they made him recut the film a couple of times before spiking the release), Carpenter swore off studios. (Or perhaps it was the other way around, because … Continue reading ACW1987: Prince of Darkness

ACW1986: Big Trouble in Little China

(December 8, 2017)

John Carpenter. Big Trouble in Little China. 1986. I really thought I had seen this before, but absolutely nothing looks familiar. I do remember this film getting really bad reviews at the time, and I can see why. It’s a zany comedy/action film; a very popular genre in the 80s. But Carpenter seems to have … Continue reading ACW1986: Big Trouble in Little China

Quiz Time

(December 6, 2017)

Guess what this is! . . . If your guess was “smoked eel marzipan”, then you were correct. Mmm… marzipan… Those wacky Germans… A bit disappointing that it’s neither smoky nor fishy, though.

Tangled Lettering

(December 3, 2017)

I was reading Pride of the Decent Man by T. J. Kirsch, published by NBM. It’s OK, but I found myself sort of vaguely annoyed by the diary/letter parts. They look like this: And then I started really staring at the diary (and letter) snippets. And then it hit me: There’s really no other way … Continue reading Tangled Lettering

4AD Bootleg Tapes

(December 3, 2017)

During the 90s, I was involved with a lot of tape swapping related to the British record company 4AD. These tapes have since languished in a box in the basement, but this autumn I went on a I Must Tidy Things! jag and carried the box up to the apt. and digitised all the tapes. … Continue reading 4AD Bootleg Tapes

ACW1984: Starman

(December 2, 2017)

What a pretty baby! What is friend? What happened! They’re both in focus at the same time!!! And now the backgrounds are in focus at the same time as the people!? WHAAA. Is this even a Carpenter movie!? John Carpenter. Starman. 1984. By this time in his career, Carpenter had abandoned everybody from his stable … Continue reading ACW1984: Starman

ACW1983: Christine

(December 2, 2017)

Uh-oh. Nasty boys. You can tell that he’s evil by his leather vest. John Carpenter. Christine. 1983. The only thing I remember about this film is 1) I thought it was a bit meh, and 2) I had several friends that thought this was the greatest film ever. Or something. I’m excited to determine who … Continue reading ACW1983: Christine

ACW1982: The Thing

(December 2, 2017)

John Carpenter. The Thing. 1982. Carpenter’s first major studio movie. It’s very different from all his preceding films: Instead of a cheery amateurishness, we’re into Standard 80s Sci-Fi territory. “Competent” US actors that emote in the normal American mainstream film way, and a “professional” film score that tells us how to feel at any given … Continue reading ACW1982: The Thing

ACW1981: Escape from New York

(December 1, 2017)

That’s pretty much how cell phones looked in 1997. John Carpenter. Escape from New York. 1981. It’s fun watching these Carpenter films chronologically. You see how Carpenter’s cast of regulars develop. Adrienne Barbeau (who first popped up in that TV horror film) reappears, and the star is, of course, Elvis. This is another one of … Continue reading ACW1981: Escape from New York

ACW1980: The Fog

(December 1, 2017)

That looks so much like a real house and where you would park your car! John Carpenter. The Fog. 1980. The explanation for the multiple beers (or “beers”): I’ve been having this weird problem the last few weeks with some ripped Blurays. Most of them play just fine, but a handful have sound that’s 10% … Continue reading ACW1980: The Fog

Of Interest to 4AD Fans of Olden Times

(November 28, 2017)

Back in the late 80s/early 90s, I was a huge 4AD fan and did many fannish things, like running VHS tape chains of 4AD-related video clips and the like. It’s a bit difficult to remember at this remove just what was so important about watching video clips and interviews with these bands now, but this … Continue reading Of Interest to 4AD Fans of Olden Times

ACW1979: Elvis

(November 26, 2017)

Apparently Fritz the Cat was huge in Tupelo in the 40s. Elvis. 1979. I didn’t know what to expect. John Carpenter doing a TV documentary about Elvis? Presley? Starring Kurt Russell!? But John Carpenter is no David Cronenberg. I had somehow gotten them slightly confused in my brain: They’re both people starting in the 70s … Continue reading ACW1979: Elvis

ACW1978: Someone’s Watching Me!

(November 26, 2017)

Someone’s Watching Me!. 1978. This film was made before Halloween, but released after it, apparently. I thought it kinda strange that Carpenter would go from a smash hit like Halloween to making films for TV (it was shown on NBC), but that chronology makes more sense. The version I watched is in 16:9, which is … Continue reading ACW1978: Someone’s Watching Me!

ACW1978: Halloween

(November 25, 2017)

Halloween. 1978. As with most of these films, I’ve only seen them on VHS before. Man, the blu-ray transfers look fine. (And all of John Carpenter’s films seem to be available on blu-ray, which is pretty impressive (commercially) for a director.) The movie may have had a small budget, but Carpenter didn’t skimp on the … Continue reading ACW1978: Halloween

ACW1976: Assault on Precinct 13

(November 24, 2017)

Assault on Precinct 13. 1976. John Carpenter’s music is a definite draw. It’s kinda raw and has a vitality to it. Anyway, I thought I had seen this before, but I think I must have been confusing this film with The Warriors or Fort Apache, The Bronx or something. Some of the scenes are very … Continue reading ACW1976: Assault on Precinct 13

Let It Snow

(November 24, 2017)

I wanted to make the Carpenter series of posts look ridiculously romantic, so I got the swashiest font I could find.  But it’s not enough: I wanted to make it snow, too. Now, this blog is on WordPress.com, which adds limitations to what is easy or even possible to do.  I wanted a CSS-only snowing … Continue reading Let It Snow

ACW1974: Dark Star

(November 24, 2017)

Dark Star. 1974. Hey! It’s movie time again! I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this before, but it’s a long long time ago. The context now is very different, because it seems like every other line in the film is familiar from samples in music. I think Meat Beat Manifesto has most of the dialogue on … Continue reading ACW1974: Dark Star

A Carpenter Winter

(November 24, 2017)

I had planned on re-watching all of Ingmar Bergman’s films starting about right now (we all need cheering up when winter arrives, right?), but the Bergman box set has had its release pushed back two week, so I’m here without any Bergman movies to watch. So I got all of John Carpenter’s films instead, because … Continue reading A Carpenter Winter

My New Concert Blog

(November 22, 2017)

Le Guess Who

(November 21, 2017)

I went to Le Guess Who in Utrecht, and it was very good. Here’s a festival report. The festival is spread out all over Utrecht, like here in front of a church where Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares performed. (The doors closed mysteriously before the huddled throng and nobody let us know what was happening, … Continue reading Le Guess Who

New Music

(November 20, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month. (Well, mostly recorded from old tapes.)

Wurst

(November 15, 2017)

Space Age

(November 10, 2017)

If only there were some kind of wild space age technology that would allow you to update a schedule on a web page instead of having an annoying permanent overlay notifying you that the schedule may be out of date. But that’s science fiction.

Black Metal

(November 9, 2017)

Rutsch

(November 8, 2017)

Felder

(November 7, 2017)

Fonts, Swashes, Linux, Problems

(November 1, 2017)

I recently bought a font called Jolie Romantique (for a future, er, project), and it worked without any problems: I plopped the .ttf file into ~/.fonts, created an SVG file with some text in it, ran it through ImageMagick “convert” and got this: Of special interest here is that end-of-word swash.  (That’s apparently the technical … Continue reading Fonts, Swashes, Linux, Problems

Neil the Horse and the Big Banana

(October 30, 2017)

While tidying the basement, I found these tapes: It’s an old radio show featuring Neil the Horse, originally broadcast on Canadian radio around 1982. So I was like 14 at the time, and I was a major fan of the Neil the Horse comic book series by Arn Saba. I think there was an ad … Continue reading Neil the Horse and the Big Banana

VHS, Linux, Problems

(October 29, 2017)

I’ve been trying to tidy up the storage locker in the loft this autumn, getting rid of old junk (so that I can put more, slightly newer junk up there). I happened unto this box: A nice stack of VHS tapes. If I remember correctly, the reason I kept these was that during the 80s … Continue reading VHS, Linux, Problems

Possibly the Greatest Underground Comix Ever

(October 24, 2017)

I’ve been somewhat disillusioned by underground comix lately, but when my ebay search alert for “mark beyer” dinged the other week, I bought this: Lemme Outa Here! is published by Print Mint, and you don’t get more underground than that. I knew nothing else about this when I bought it (other than it having a … Continue reading Possibly the Greatest Underground Comix Ever

World of Films and Cocktails Redux

(October 21, 2017)

It’s over! I was dared to do a “one film from every country” blog series, and I upped that by adding “yeah, sure, and I’ll do a cocktail from every country, too”.  Because I’m stupid. The cocktail bit turned out to be more of a problem than the film bit. Even though it’s a silly … Continue reading World of Films and Cocktails Redux

WFC Swaziland: Fool in a Bubble

(October 20, 2017)

*gasp* This is the last film in this blog series, and it’s from Swaziland, apparently. But mostly South Africa? Durban’s in South Africa, isn’t it? Anyway, it’s a documentary about a musician called Syd Kitchen, and the premise is apparently that if only it hadn’t been for the anti-apartheid boycott, he’d like be world famous. … Continue reading WFC Swaziland: Fool in a Bubble

meme x giffy

(October 15, 2017)

The other week I was tinkering with editing GIF animations in Emacs, and then I started wondering: Can this be any more ridiculous? Yes. So it’s a mashup of the Emacs meme mode and the new GIF animation code.  I spent most of the time on this wondering whether I could somehow make one or … Continue reading meme x giffy

WFC Togo: Ashakara

(October 13, 2017)

It’s a pretty grainy transfer, but it kinda suits the film, because it’s kinda odd. It’s about an African scientist discovering the cure for a mysterious disease (AIDS isn’t mentioned) in a jungle plant, and people trying to exploit this cure. Which involves a satellite uplink that’s being run by an AI? For some reason? … Continue reading WFC Togo: Ashakara

New Music

(October 11, 2017)

Music I’ve bought or found this month. I’ve been rooting through boxes and boxes of old stuff.  A seemingly unlimited supply of things to throw away.  But one box was full of old tapes, a fair number of which are bootlegs and mixtapes of rarities I got in the mail in the 90s.  I couldn’t … Continue reading New Music

My New Concert Blog

(October 11, 2017)

Of course you should be able to make animated GIFs in Emacs

(October 8, 2017)

I was wondering what a convenient production process for GIFs from movies would be like, so I hacked my hacked version of mplayer a bit more.  Nothing major, since it already has all the functionality, but it doesn’t group continuous screenshots by name, which makes picking out the animations afterwards awkward. There’s probably a gazillion … Continue reading Of course you should be able to make animated GIFs in Emacs

WFC Luxembourg: Elles

(October 6, 2017)

This isn’t a very Luxembourgian (that a word) film. It’s a Belgian/French/Luxembourgassian/Portuguese/Spanish/Swiss coproduction, but it was stil lthe Luxembourg submission for the Oscars that year. That it’s a European copro-duction is usually not a good sign: You often get a neutered lowest common demoninator sausage from that factory, but I kinda had hopes for this … Continue reading WFC Luxembourg: Elles

An Image from a Superhero Comic Presented Without Comment

(October 3, 2017)

The Next Standard in Pink Slips

(October 1, 2017)

From Paywall by Joseph P. Kelly on Landfill Editions. Read the review. Buy.

Surprise Twin Peaks Crossover

(October 1, 2017)

Did anybody wonder how Phillip Jeffries in Twin Peaks s3 ended up as a tea kettle? |(From Mickey Mouse by Floyd Gottfredson and Bill Walsh, 1952.)

Perhaps I Should Have Done Some Weeding This Summer

(September 25, 2017)

War, Comics, Commerce

(September 25, 2017)

“Literary” comics are sometimes more faddy than “genre” comics. Whenever there’s a comic that breaks through to the general public and becomes a hit, it seems like all the major publishers call all available agents and put in an order of whatever genre somebody else had a hit with. After Fun Home (by Alison Bechdel) … Continue reading War, Comics, Commerce

WFC Samoa: O le tulafale

(September 23, 2017)

I thought I had only physical films left, but here’s another Amazon video find. The other three remaining films are still stuck in the mail somewhere. Bordelinx seems to have possibly lost a bunch of my packages, and aren’t responsing to any queries. *sigh* I must admit that I found this film rather befuddling. There’s … Continue reading WFC Samoa: O le tulafale

WFC Greenland: Inuk

(September 22, 2017)

Gah! This DVD only has German subtitles. Two of them! Some of the dialogue is in Danish, though, and I can kinda sorta almost read German, so I decided to go for it anyway. I’m shocked at how much German I’m able to parse. Movies from Greenland have a tendency to focus on the more … Continue reading WFC Greenland: Inuk

WFC Andorra: Devil Kiss

(September 22, 2017)

There are apparently several films that are from Andorra (and not Spanish films with an Andorran co-production credit), but this is not one of them. Because they’re impossible to find. This is one of those 70s Spanish horror/sex films, probably made for the international market since it’s dubbed into English. I googled it, and apparently … Continue reading WFC Andorra: Devil Kiss

Wiping

(September 17, 2017)

I’m making an effort to tidy up the upstairs Storage Locker of Doom.  It’s been accruing stuff for a decade and is now officially full. Amongst the general effluvia is a succession of discarded storage solutions (i.e., external disks and RAID systems), and there’s nothing sadder than a 512GB USB2 disk from 2007.  So I’m … Continue reading Wiping

WFC Cyprus: μικρο εγκλημα

(September 15, 2017)

This is a lighthearted comedy about a junior policeman in a small village that just can’t get any respect, but starts investigating a mysterious death anyway. It’s fun! Good actors, beautiful scenery, and it’s inventive despite pursuing pretty well-known tropes. The many, many different ways he imagined that the death had taken place are very … Continue reading WFC Cyprus: μικρο εγκλημα

Responsive Comics

(September 13, 2017)

The other month I was staring at the Diamonds Previews interface that I hacked up last year. Its main purpose is to allow me (and anybody else) to go through the monthly listings rapidly, without all that clicking and stuff. I was wondering: Has CSS Flexbox technology progressed to the point where the interface could … Continue reading Responsive Comics

New Music

(September 11, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Bookshelf Porn

(September 10, 2017)

I enjoy those shelf porn posts that pop up from time to time (“Ooo! Books! Comics! Avarice!”) so I thought I’d do one, too, since I just got this fabulous bookcase and is just about finished sorting stuff out to put in it. But first I had to rip out the baseboard so that the … Continue reading Bookshelf Porn

WFC Uzbekistan: The Keeper

(September 9, 2017)

Uzbekistan looks very modern. I found this short on Youtube. Oy vey. I did like the fake “paused” shots, so: The Keeper. Otabek Djuraev. 2013. Uzbekistan. Grape + Sage Holiday Kompot Cocktail 12 parts red grapes 4 parts water 2 parts sage leaves 1 part honey champagne Cut the grapes and sage leaves. Put the … Continue reading WFC Uzbekistan: The Keeper

WFC Western Sahara: Life is Waiting: Referendum and Resistance in Western Sahara

(September 9, 2017)

I found this documentary on Amazon Prime. It’s a very… modern… documentary. That is, a typical cut lasts for about a second, and it’s filmed with very shaky shakycam, and the soundtrack is cacophonous. Get off my lawn! But it manages to convey a lot (a lot!) of information about Western Sahara, a country that … Continue reading WFC Western Sahara: Life is Waiting: Referendum and Resistance in Western Sahara

WFC Tanzania: People of the Forest

(September 9, 2017)

This is a film about chimpanzees in Tanzania. (Which I’ve learned has the stress on the middle “a” from watching other films from around this area in Africa. Tanzaaania.) It’s one of those very old-fashioned ones where you have a narrator that explains what all the animals are thinking and feeling, and there’s a narrative … Continue reading WFC Tanzania: People of the Forest

WFC Tuvalu: ThuleTuvalu

(September 9, 2017)

This Amazon Prime find is made by a Swiss director, but it’s about Greenland and Tuvalu, juxtaposing the effect of climate change on the two places. It’s a very good good documentary, managing to tell most of the story through the voices of the affected people. No talking heads constantly intercutting the footage with serious … Continue reading WFC Tuvalu: ThuleTuvalu

WFC Benin: Africa Paradis

(September 8, 2017)

“avec toi” I found this sci-fi film on Youtube. It didn’t have English subtitles, but I noticed that Youtube now provides “auto-captioning” for select films. In addition, they also have machine translations of these captions, so I went for it. I think the conclusion, after rolling on the floor, laughing, for an hour and a … Continue reading WFC Benin: Africa Paradis

WFC Saint Kitts and Nevis: New Year Parade Day St. Kitts SugarMas 2016

(September 8, 2017)

This is a… documentary… on Youtube… OK, I’m so ashamed of myself! This is a random clip from Youtube! There’s supposed to be one single real film from St. Kitts and or Nevis, but it’s nowhere to be found on the interwebs! Or Amazon! Or Netflix! Or anywhere! Anyway, looks like they had fun. All … Continue reading WFC Saint Kitts and Nevis: New Year Parade Day St. Kitts SugarMas 2016

WFC Djibouti: Men in the Arena

(September 8, 2017)

Was this what 45 was thinking of? Yes! Djibouti! This is more of an American/Somali film than a Djibouti (that’s a word), but there is some Djiboutian (that’s a word) interest… because of the… football… It’s about a football team. I mean, I’m not the right person to say whether a football documentary is a … Continue reading WFC Djibouti: Men in the Arena

WFC Turkmenistan: Alexander’s Lost World

(September 8, 2017)

This is an Australian documentary that can be found on Youtube, but it’s kinda sorta from Turkmenistan. Finding genuine Turkmen films proved rather challenging. As documentaries go, it’s… OK. It’s nice and HD, so plenty of vistaey vistas. There’s a lot of speculation based on how things “must” have been, and isn’t very convincing, really. … Continue reading WFC Turkmenistan: Alexander’s Lost World

WFC Mauritius: La rencontre

(September 4, 2017)

This is a stylishly shot but rather trivial short about … I guess, insanity and drugs (tl;ds: Don’t Do Drugs). It’s kinda fun, although it goes out of its way to explain all the mysteries it sets up in way too much detail. And it’s not on Youtube, but on Viddsee (sic), which sounds totally … Continue reading WFC Mauritius: La rencontre

Editing Movie Posters From Emacs

(September 3, 2017)

I was waiting for some people to drop by yesterday to pick up a sofa, and I started thinking about how nice it would be to pull down movie posters automatically and perhaps put some text or border or something on them. Instead of sensibly looking for an API for this kind of stuff, I … Continue reading Editing Movie Posters From Emacs

WFC Bahamas: Not | Gay

(September 2, 2017)

This is an anthology film, and only one of the four shorts included are from Bahamas. They’re all kinda interesting and quirky. The Bahamian (that’s definitely a word) one is perhaps the quirkiest one: It’s about a guy with an OCD cleaning obsession. It is, unfortunately, the most indifferently filmed one. Hm… I guess I’ll … Continue reading WFC Bahamas: Not | Gay

WFC Gambia: The Exchange: Six Faces of the Gambia

(September 2, 2017)

This documentary can be found on Youtube. I mean imdb(!?). It explicitly says at the beginning that it’s not going to focus on poverty, but is going to show us some interesting people from the Gambia who are doing interesting stuff. And then it does. It’s not very exciting as a film: The cinematography and … Continue reading WFC Gambia: The Exchange: Six Faces of the Gambia

WFC Dominica: Nom Tèw

(September 2, 2017)

This short can be found on Youtube. It’s about a guy who lives in the forest, and we follow him around while he’s gathering food and making food and gathering more food. I quite enjoyed this at the start, but then it started getting a bit fetishistic… Especially the somewhat unmotivated switched between normal speed … Continue reading WFC Dominica: Nom Tèw

WFC Palau: Micronesia: Palau District

(September 2, 2017)

This documentary short can be found on Youtube. It’s a very straightforward film: There’s a narrator who explains everything we’re seeing. Very 50s. Or 60s? But it’s likeable. It includes many scenes of everyday life; people fishing and sowing and just being people, which is enjoyable to watch. And this films marks the halfway point … Continue reading WFC Palau: Micronesia: Palau District

WFC Timor-Leste: A Guerra da Beatriz

(September 1, 2017)

I found this film on Youtube, and it’s kinda very very artifacty. This film tells the story about East Timor’s struggle for liberation (from the Indonesians, synchronicitily (that’s a word) enough) through the eyes of the titular Beatriz. The actors who play the central characters are pretty good, but there’s a lot of stiff acting … Continue reading WFC Timor-Leste: A Guerra da Beatriz

WFC Maldives: Rhymes With Shove

(September 1, 2017)

Sometimes this blog series is so frustrating. There’s a lot of proper films made in the Maldives (for a country of its size), but none of these are available anywhere and/or subtitled in English. So I’m left with this short which can be found on Youtube. “You listen to way too much Neil Young. And … Continue reading WFC Maldives: Rhymes With Shove

WFC Indonesia: Headshot

(September 1, 2017)

Ultraviolence! Kung fu! Amnesia! Drugs! More ultraviolence! They must have had a massive ketchup budget. This is an accomplished and interesting action movie. Nice actors, too. But it somehow lost me after a while and I started thinking about other things. Like looking up Indonesia on the map. Man, that’s a lot of islands. If … Continue reading WFC Indonesia: Headshot

WFC Seychelles: The Return of a King to Seychelles

(August 28, 2017)

This documentary starts with a very fast-paced infodump of the history of the Seychelles and being part of an African empire and… I’m not sure I got it all. It’s very dense and the voiceover guy talks fast. And then we’re in present time and … a king … from… Ghana? (again, he talks fast) … Continue reading WFC Seychelles: The Return of a King to Seychelles

Compact Video Data

(August 26, 2017)

I’m thinking about watching a buttload of older films… perhaps all from the 40s? I’m not sure. In any case, I’ve started poking around to see what’s available, and I stumbled onto a 50 musicals box set for $7 (used), which made me so curious I just had to get it. And it arrived today: … Continue reading Compact Video Data

WFC Sudan: Beats of the Antonov

(August 25, 2017)

I acquired this documentary via non-traditional means. You’d think this would be the kind of thing that Amazon Video or Netflix would carry, but no… Anyway, this is about the current Sudanese civil war, which is mainly between the northerners (who totally suck) and the Blue Nile (and Nuba) people in the south (who are … Continue reading WFC Sudan: Beats of the Antonov

WFC Madagascar: Tabataba

(August 25, 2017)

I just can’t figure out what the correct aspect ratio of this film is supposed to be. By default, it plays as a 4:3 film, and everybody looks too skinny and kinda squashed. If I go to 16:9, everybody looks a bit on the wide side. So probably somewhere in between is the right answer… … Continue reading WFC Madagascar: Tabataba

WFC Namibia: Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation

(August 21, 2017)

What they were aiming for with this film is crystal clear: A heaving, empathetic nation building film. And it has one thing going for it, and that’s the beautiful shots from the Savannah. But it’s intensely boring: Every scene a cliché of one kind or another. None of the actors are compelling, either. And while … Continue reading WFC Namibia: Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation

Blow Out 2017

(August 20, 2017)

Huh.  Where did that interference pattern/banding thing that’s on the first of the evening’s sets come from?  Is that from the camera?  Or was there a 50-ish Hz light source blinking that I didn’t see?  Weird.  And it disappeared on the last set, and I don’t think I changed any settings on the camera…

Blow Out 2017

(August 19, 2017)

 

Blow Out 2017

(August 17, 2017)

My New Concert Blog

(August 15, 2017)

Kongsberg Jazz 2017

(August 15, 2017)

Hey!  I recorded some stuff and forgot to edit and upload.

WFC Solomon Islands: A Passage to Anuta

(August 14, 2017)

Yeah, yeah, another Youtube short that isn’t very grounded in the ostensible subject country. Finding films from these Pacific islands states is really, really difficult, and I’d much prefer real movies, not matter how bad (and I’ve seen some very bad films in this series) than these documentary shorts, but… And does anybody know whether … Continue reading WFC Solomon Islands: A Passage to Anuta

New Music

(August 13, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month.

WFC Costa Rica: Del amor y otros demonios

(August 7, 2017)

I was unable to find this on DVD or via any of the streaming services with English subtitles, so I had to resort to *ahem* crowd-sourcing. The aspect ratio is slightly off, but I couldn’t figure out how to de-squash-o-vision it, so everybody look kinda skinny. This is a very languid film. Which is something … Continue reading WFC Costa Rica: Del amor y otros demonios

Gosh

(August 6, 2017)

I added some further improvements to my Javascript-based “quick scan” Diamonds Previews catalogue site: Goshenite.The main tweaks is to make it a bit more responsive (with a spinner when the cover images haven’t been preloaded), as well as a way to “favourite” certain publishers. If you click a publisher name (up to the left), it’ll … Continue reading Gosh

WFC São Tomé og Príncipe: Mionga ki Ôbo: Mar e Selva

(August 5, 2017)

This is a Youtube find. It’s a very personal and intimate documentary about São Tomé (and Príncipe). I’m a sucker for Portuguese, but I don’t think that explains quite why I found this documentary so engrossing. It’s just seems so honest and real. All thumbs up. Mionga ki Ôbo: Mar e Selva. Ângelo Torres. 2005. … Continue reading WFC São Tomé og Príncipe: Mionga ki Ôbo: Mar e Selva

WFC Congo: The Man Who Mends Women

(August 5, 2017)

I had to join the Urban Movie Channel on Amazon to watch this film. It’s not a very urban film. Could there be a euphemism in play here!??!! And apparently that channel doesn’t offer downloading films before watching them, or something? As a result, bits of this film are completely artifact-o-rama. But most bits are … Continue reading WFC Congo: The Man Who Mends Women

WFC Niger: Cocorico! Monsieur Poulet

(August 5, 2017)

A rare French DVD that includes English subtitles. Which reminds me of this comment on imdb about a completely different film: Film. It’s just a shame that the French are killing the African film industry. Why is it so hard to get copies of these films???? What acan we do to help African filmmakers break … Continue reading WFC Niger: Cocorico! Monsieur Poulet

WFC Botswana: March of the Gods: Botswana Metalheads

(August 4, 2017)

I bought this documentary from this site, which turns out to be a Vimeo thing: You pay some money and then you can stream the film or download it, DRM-free. I did the latter, and the video quality is more than adequate: Better than DVD quality, I’d say. Some banding and artifacting, but not too … Continue reading WFC Botswana: March of the Gods: Botswana Metalheads

WFC Comoros: جزر القمر

(August 4, 2017)

This is an episode of the Duroob documentary series found on Youtube. I don’t know what country the TV series is from, really. It could be Saudi Arabia, I guess. It starts off oddly, with the presenter giving a speech about Allah’s Infinite Earth; sort of coaxing the audience to care about the documentary. And … Continue reading WFC Comoros: جزر القمر

WFC Montenegro: Killer Mermaids

(August 2, 2017)

This film is probably more Serbian than Montenegran (that’s a word), but It’s one of those retro horror films, which is something I am totally in the mood for now. You’ve got all the usual slasher elements, and it’s fine. The cinematographer (and editor) sometimes go overboard in their enthusiasm: The fake shakycam is rather … Continue reading WFC Montenegro: Killer Mermaids

WFC Papua New Guinea: Mr. Pip

(August 1, 2017)

I guess this is more of an Australian and or New Zealandish (that’s a word) movie than a Papau New Guinean (that’s definitely a word) movie. “Isn’t that… isn’t that…” “Yes, it is.” Anyway, I found the scoring of this film to be really annoying. Hardly a moment of import goes by without them trucking … Continue reading WFC Papua New Guinea: Mr. Pip

“Concerts in Oslo” App Updated

(July 30, 2017)

I took a short holiday to sit in the garden and update the Concerts in Oslo app.  I mainly wanted to make navigation more intuitive by having the “back” button do what you’d expect it to do, but I also wanted to play with the Google Map API and see whether that’s any fun. And … Continue reading “Concerts in Oslo” App Updated

WFC Antigua and Barbuda: The Church

(July 25, 2017)

This short can be found on Youtube. I’m not sure whether it’s a prank or what, but it’s certainly… different. I am amused. [Edit: Apparently this has even less to do with Antigua and/or Barbuda than I thought.  Marco Romano (who seems to have cornered the market for films from San Marino) does not seem … Continue reading WFC Antigua and Barbuda: The Church

WFC Micronesia: Who I Am

(July 24, 2017)

This documentary short is on Youtube. It’s more of an American film than a Micronesian film, but it’s about a “student missionary” (?) who’s stationed in Micronesia. (He wanted to go to South Korea or China or basically anywhere in that area, but (surprise surprise) those places were too racist to accept him, so he … Continue reading WFC Micronesia: Who I Am

WFC Nauru: Nauru 1973

(July 23, 2017)

Nauru has the . Bizarrely enough, when I looked it up on the tablet (to do the balcony die shot shown below), Youtube claims that the film is unavailable, but it shows it just fine on Linux… Anyway, it’s a home movie? What can I say? Nauru 1973. Unknown. 1973. Nauru. Nauru Iced Coffee ground … Continue reading WFC Nauru: Nauru 1973

WFC South Sudan: Ten Minutes is Two Hours

(July 22, 2017)

I found this on Vimeo. Finding films from South Sudan isn’t easy, and this is more of an American experimental/documentary short than South Sudanese (that’s a word, right?) film. But it’s shot in South Sodan, so I liked the film: It’s inventive and affecting, but I also wonder what the people who appeared in it … Continue reading WFC South Sudan: Ten Minutes is Two Hours

WFC Oman: Operation Oman

(July 22, 2017)

I found this documentary on Amazon, and it’s really more of a British film than an Omaranian (that’s a word, right) film. But It’s a straight-up propaganda film about scrappy, idealistic British mercenaries (and soldiers? the film is vague on that point) protecting Oman (and thereby, the rest of the world) from the spread of … Continue reading WFC Oman: Operation Oman

WFC Tajikistan: سکوت‎‎

(July 21, 2017)

I guess this is more of an Iranian film than a Tajikistani (that’s a word, right?) film, but And, wow! What an unexpected delight! An honest-to-goodness avant garde film! Yay! If I had known that this was an Iranian film, this wouldn’t have come as such a surprise, seeing as Iran is really the cultural … Continue reading WFC Tajikistan: سکوت‎‎

WFC Qatar: Divines

(July 21, 2017)

I got this on DVD, but it turned out to only have French subtitles. *sigh* But Netflix had it streaming with English subtitles, so the Ipod to the rescue again. This is the first Netflix film in this blog series: It occurred to me that they might have a larger library of films co-produced by … Continue reading WFC Qatar: Divines

WFC Bahrain: حكاية بحرينية

(July 20, 2017)

This is high melodrama with long-suffering, noble women and harsh, evil men. The actors are highly variable and the cinematigraphy isn’t very exciting, but somehow it still works. It’s fascinatingly odd in parts and rather gripping. And it’s funny, too, in-between the drama. A Bahraini Tale. Bassam Al-Thawadi. 2006. Bahrain. M E Cafe Latte Cocktail … Continue reading WFC Bahrain: حكاية بحرينية

WFC Iceland: Nói albinói

(July 15, 2017)

“I am so in this class. I’m totally not an adult.” This has a very un-colour-corrected look, which is nice. I was a bit thrown at first, wondering why this adult was hanging around at school and living at home with his parents: Was he developmentally challenged or something? But it turned out to just … Continue reading WFC Iceland: Nói albinói

New Music

(July 11, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month.

Useful Consumer Review

(July 5, 2017)

I’ve been trying to get more walking in lately, but walking is boring. To keep parts of the brain entertained, I thought it might be nice to listen to radio theatre stuff, and it is.  Nice, that is. The great thing about plays instead of music is that it’s fine just listening with one ear … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

Linux Can 4K @ 60 Haz

(July 4, 2017)

I tried getting 4K @ 60Hz using Intel built-in graphics, and I failed miserably. Rather than spend more days on that project (yes, this is the year of Linux on the TV, I Mean Desktop), I bought a low-profile Nvidia card, since there are several people on the interwebs that claim to have gotten that … Continue reading Linux Can 4K @ 60 Haz

WFC Kuwait: الجزء غير المفقود

(July 3, 2017)

This short is on Youtube. This one, on the other hand… The first sip isn’t. The Unmissing Part. Ahmad Abdullah Alkhudari . 2016. Kuwait. Caramel – Swirl Hot Chocolate water milk chocolate cream sugar caramel sauce rum Dissolve the chocolate in water. Add cream. Allow to cool off. Meanwhile, whip cream with sugar. Swirl in … Continue reading WFC Kuwait: الجزء غير المفقود

More Music Distribution

(July 3, 2017)

As I’m sure everybody remembers from this post just … six years ago, I have a cat 5 based music distribution thing going on in my apt. It works fine. This weekend I realised that the only thing I wanted to tweak here was having music near my workstation in the hall. I usually sit … Continue reading More Music Distribution

WFC Kiribati: Kiribati: Words from the Last Generation

(July 1, 2017)

This documentary is on Youtube. The story it tells is heartbreaking, but it’s edited in that American TV Documentary fashion where there’s not a millisecond of time of silence to digest between each sound bite. While that may be a sound commercial choice for a documentary seeking to get people to take action (against climate … Continue reading WFC Kiribati: Kiribati: Words from the Last Generation

WFC Liberia: The Redemption of General Butt Naked

(July 1, 2017)

This documentary is another Amazon Video find and is perhaps more American than Liberian. It’s about a former Liberian warlord who was even more way out there than the rest: General Butt Naked, who went on naked killing sprees. He’s now reformed and is a Christian preacher. It’s a fascinating film because he’s seems so … Continue reading WFC Liberia: The Redemption of General Butt Naked

Isn’t 4K@60Hz HDMI possible in Linux?

(July 1, 2017)

I bought a spiffy new 4K TV the other week, and I wanted to set up a complete 4K pipeline. Not that there’s that much 4K stuff available: For instance, Netflix has a pitiful 101 list of shows, most of them made by Netflix themselves. Anyhoo! I was thinking a bit about how to set … Continue reading Isn’t 4K@60Hz HDMI possible in Linux?

WFC San Marino: The Last Alchemist

(June 30, 2017)

There aren’t many films from San Marino, and this is an Italian co-production. As is the cocktail. This is the 151st film in this blog series, which means that there’s only 49 films to go! *gasp* This will end sometime! This summer! This is a 30 minute thriller, and it’s heavy on the irony. It … Continue reading WFC San Marino: The Last Alchemist

WFC Latvia: Par desmit minutem vecaks

(June 30, 2017)

Uhm… I’m not sure how I ended up with this short: Surely there must be some Latvian feature films available on DVD? It’s a mystery lost to the winds of time. So… this Soviet era silent short basically is a long shot of a group of kids watching a very exciting film in a movie … Continue reading WFC Latvia: Par desmit minutem vecaks

WFC Bolivia: American Visa

(June 24, 2017)

Whew! South American to the rescue again. After a string of old-fashioned grandiose films, it’s such a relief to watch a smart, fresh film again. It’s a bit like… Breaking Bad. An asshole (as the cab driver says at the start) is dealt a bad blow and turns to crime. And we’re supposed to care … Continue reading WFC Bolivia: American Visa

WFC Libya: عمر المختار

(June 24, 2017)

Hey, it’s Mad Max! It’s another one of those Birth of a Nation stories, er, I mean, one of those nation building films. It’s not my favourite genre, but you have to respect the grandeur of some of the scenes. Yuge scenes in yuge rooms. Amusingly enough, this film was banned in 1982 in Italy. … Continue reading WFC Libya: عمر المختار

WFC Azerbaijan: Ali and Nino

(June 23, 2017)

This is a high-budget Kazakh (is that the right word?) film. It’s in English, and some parts are more like a British costume drama than anything else. It’s a UK co-production, so that makes sense. It’s a very romantic film, and it’s a very nationalistic film. So it’s a national-romantic film? It’s hard not to … Continue reading WFC Azerbaijan: Ali and Nino

Shimmery OLED Pixels

(June 23, 2017)

I upgraded to a not-so-bright and very shiny Sony A1E OLED 4K TV this week (from my ten-year-old Samsung). It’s basically very nice, but there’s one very, very weird effect that I’ve seen nobody mention: This is an episode of Doctor Who paused, but it’ll do those shimmery teal pixels even when the video is … Continue reading Shimmery OLED Pixels

WFC Malawi: William and the Windmill

(June 23, 2017)

This Amazon find isn’t really a Malawi film, but it’s an American documentary about a great Malawi kid who’s into windmills and an American guy that helps him make bigger windmills. It’s… a bit uncomfortable to watch, because his helper is so… verbal, and the kid isn’t. I was also wondering whether the filmmakers had … Continue reading WFC Malawi: William and the Windmill

Not the Best Comics of 2017

(June 22, 2017)

After spending so much time last year on that Fantagraphics project, I amassed a huge backlog of comics that I just didn’t have time to read. I guess if I were to put that backlog into a stack, it’d be over two meters high. As usual, some were more interesting than others, and those books … Continue reading Not the Best Comics of 2017

Giant Cranes

(June 18, 2017)

I’m just wondering: Are the giant cranes multiplying? Every time I look there seems to be more of them

Further Trends in Packaging

(June 17, 2017)

Many, many years ago I noted that people selling vinyl were starting to use vinyl as the packing material. At that point, they were using stuff that, well, was junk. But today I got a package from the US that made me go “hmmmm”. Or “yay”? I was exploring discogs.com looking for new stuff from … Continue reading Further Trends in Packaging

WFC Vatican State: Pio XI e Marconi

(June 17, 2017)

Whee. There’s only . It’s hellishly basic. Pio XI e Marconi. A. Nonymous. 1933. Vatican State. Bellini 2 parts Prosecco 1 part fresh peach purée Chill a Champagne flute and add the purée. Pour the Processo over the purée. This post is part of the World of Films and Cocktails series. Explore the map.

WFC Guyana: Exploration Guyana

(June 17, 2017)

Another Youtube documentary. Perhaps I should say something about my methodology for finding films from these smaller countries. First I check Istanbulfilms, because they have an impressive list of interesting films. But the only film they listed from Guyana wasn’t available anywhere, not even Amazon Video. So then I google for “best films from Guyana”, … Continue reading WFC Guyana: Exploration Guyana

My New Fashion Designer Blog x Useful Consumer Review

(June 16, 2017)

I’ve been trying to use an Android device as my “lug around the apt. while doing stuff” device, but it’s just not good enough. None of the apps for sshfs file browsing or video watching are beyond the “well, it kinda works” level. The ssh times out and doesn’t come back again until you do … Continue reading My New Fashion Designer Blog x Useful Consumer Review

WFC Grenada: Blinded

(June 16, 2017)

This one can be found here and then and then and then the last part is missing! It’s a no-budget shortish film, but I didn’t realise that the last 20 minutes wasn’t available yet. Oops! It’s told in flashback form after something disasterous has happened, and then we learn… what. But (I’m always sorry to … Continue reading WFC Grenada: Blinded

WFC Equatorial Guinea: El proyecto del mono dril

(June 16, 2017)

And we’re back to Youtube this weekend. This is a documentary about an island off the coast near the equator, and in particular about the drill monkey, which I hadn’t heard of before. (And they’re endagered, of course.) It’s a very pretty and quite traditional nature film, except at the end where it’s all about … Continue reading WFC Equatorial Guinea: El proyecto del mono dril

Face Your Problems

(June 13, 2017)

I maintain a web site (and a gaggle of apps) that scrape event lists of all the clubs and concert venues in Oslo.  The other day, I was told that it missed a bob hund concert and I was all whaaa? It turned out that the reason was that Facebook is now blocking all non-logged-in … Continue reading Face Your Problems

New Music

(June 11, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month.

WFC Burundi: Journal d’un coopérant

(June 10, 2017)

Like the previous film in this series, it’s a fake documentary set in Africa. But other than that, it’s nothing like that one. This one is very French-ey, and totally riveting at first. It’s not clear what the plot of the film is going to be about, and everything seems strange (from the “home-brewed” editing … Continue reading WFC Burundi: Journal d’un coopérant

WFC Gabon: Sick Birds Die Easy

(June 10, 2017)

Oops. This film isn’t really Gabonese. It’s an American… er… documentary? about some druggies going to Gabon to do some ibogaine (a hallucinogen). Or is it? It starts off pretty convincingly as a documentary, and then it goes all Blair Witch. Those bits are really entertaining (and seem extremely scripted), but then it… kinda peters … Continue reading WFC Gabon: Sick Birds Die Easy

WFC Eritrea: ትዕግስቲ

(June 9, 2017)

Another Amazon exclusive. This film has a quite original plot, but unfortunately it’s just not very good. Tigisti. Daniel Tesfamariam. 2012. Eritrea. Tej Cocktail 2 parts homemade tej 2 parts dark rum 1 part lime juice club soda Shake vigorously with ice and strain into a glass. Top off with club soda and garnish with … Continue reading WFC Eritrea: ትዕግስቲ

BD Junk

(June 5, 2017)

Some months back I got a new record player, and this prodded me into finally re-sampling my old records (that I had originally converted to MP3 back in 1997-ish) so that I could have better-sounding old records. And in FLAC. IT MAKES SENSE!!!1! A lot of the old vinyl are 7″ singles and 12″ EPs, … Continue reading BD Junk

WFC Nepal: Himalaya – l’enfance d’un chef

(June 3, 2017)

This is a very pretty film, but it’s kitch. And I see now that the director is French, which makes sense, because it’s in the tradition of Jean Auel: So much melodrama. In every scene where the wide-eyed perfectly tousled-haired children appear I can’t help imagining a crack squad of French hairdressers standing just outside … Continue reading WFC Nepal: Himalaya – l’enfance d’un chef

WFC Monaco: Kleinhoff Hotell

(June 3, 2017)

This DVD was letterboxed, so the resolution is pretty pathetic. And the transfer from the film isn’t wobbly: The sound goes warbly all the time. So not the best viewing experience. This is a good old-fashioned erotic thriller. Like they used to make in the 70s. Lots of intrigue and voyeurism and great hair-dos. I … Continue reading WFC Monaco: Kleinhoff Hotell

WFC Nicaragua: La Yuma

(June 2, 2017)

What a charming film. I love the actors (especially La Yuma herself), but it’s all so … surprising. Everything just gels, and you get a very entertaining film. It’s a feelgood comedy from the barrios. La Yuma. Florence Jaugey. 2009. Nicaragua. The Macuá 1 part lemon juice 2 parts guava juice 3 parts Flor de … Continue reading WFC Nicaragua: La Yuma

WFC Saint Lucia: Soucouyant

(June 2, 2017)

Another Youtube short. It’s a horror movie shot in a single location with a single actor (who is rather good, I think). It’s interesting (especially in the editing) and it’s more than a bit scary. But just when you think the movie is going to, like, start, it ends. This should have been much longer. … Continue reading WFC Saint Lucia: Soucouyant

WFC Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Voodoo Man

(May 27, 2017)

Another movie found on Youtube. This one is pretty funny, but the amusing script and charming actors are let down by flaccid editing: The film feels like it wants to move faster than it does. And fortunately they only ran the blurring filter on the first flashback scene. Voodoo Man. Fabian Guerra. 2014. Saint Vincent … Continue reading WFC Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Voodoo Man

WFC Brunei: Teluki

(May 27, 2017)

Is this the first short I’ve done in this blog series? That might happen more for the remaining films as the pickings grow ever slimmer. This one’s on Youtube, and it’s kinda interesting, but slight. And it does feel ever more churlish to throw a die on films like these. Who asked for my opinion … Continue reading WFC Brunei: Teluki

WFC Belize: 2012: Kurse a di Xtabai

(May 26, 2017)

Another Youtube offering. It’s shakycam, but it kinda looks like Youtube has applied its automatic stabilisation to it? So it’s doubly sickening to watch. The video is at sea. Anyway, this is a horror/action film, and it’s OK, apart from the bit that I couldn’t really look at the screen for more than a few … Continue reading WFC Belize: 2012: Kurse a di Xtabai

WFC Barbados: The Kite Flyer

(May 26, 2017)

I did DVDs and stuff last weekend, so it’s time to delve into Youtube videos again. (Because I couldn’t find any films from Barbados on DVD.) This one can be watched here. It’s a no-budget kind of film, but there’s definitely some talent here. The editing (for about the first half hour) is on point, … Continue reading WFC Barbados: The Kite Flyer

WFC El Salvador: Sobreviviendo Guazapa

(May 24, 2017)

Man, I’m having having almost no luck with these Central American films. South America: Wonderful. Central America: Not so much. But I guess these countries are a lot smaller (and poorer), so perhaps that’s not that odd… Anyway, this is pretty bad. And I even ended up buying the DVD twice, since it turned out … Continue reading WFC El Salvador: Sobreviviendo Guazapa

WFC Tonga: When the Man Went South

(May 24, 2017)

This is a really charming film. Thoroughly amusing. I thought the dialogue was strangely like a sitcom set in New York, and it turns out that the director worked on the crew of The Nanny. Yes. Most of these lines could have been delivered by Fran Fine. So… not completely, er, Tonga… nese? But very … Continue reading WFC Tonga: When the Man Went South

WFC Tunisia: عصفور السطح

(May 20, 2017)

I think they’re aiming for a broad, classic Mediterranean coming of age/sex comedy kind of thing, but it’s remarkably creepy (at least it is now, three decades after it was made). It tries to hard to be charming, but the performances are super-hammy, the cinematography is meh, and it’s all kinda boring. It’s a well-liked … Continue reading WFC Tunisia: عصفور السطح

WFC Syria: הכלה הסורית

(May 20, 2017)

Hey! It’s a comedy! Of sorts. Well, not really. A … “dramedy”? I love the actors, and it’s amusing and quite moving. The sheer number of characters in this film is a bit on the confusing side, though. The Syrian Bride. Eran Riklis. 2004. Syrian Arab Republic. POLO water lemon juice sugar mint orange blossom … Continue reading WFC Syria: הכלה הסורית

WFC Malta: Adormidera

(May 19, 2017)

The version of this film I saw was in English. According to imdb, it’s in English/Italian/Spanish, so I wonder whether they made it in several different versions? Or perhaps they just made it in English and dubbed it into the other languages? Anyway! It’s pretty bad. Not amateurish enough to be charming, and not professional … Continue reading WFC Malta: Adormidera

WFC Sri Lanka: සුළඟ එනු පිණිස

(May 19, 2017)

This is a beautifully shot, well acted, very slow-moving film. We’re about ten minutes in when the first piece of dialogue appears. It’s great! It slowly (slowly) reveals what it’s about. Sort of. It’s a bit vague. Hypnotic. But in an every-day way. It won the Camera d’Or at Cannes. I’ve always thought that wasn’t … Continue reading WFC Sri Lanka: සුළඟ එනු පිණිස

Android Is Still Fucking Useless

(May 18, 2017)

I’ve been trying to use Android (instead of a Linux laptop) for various things lately, because some Android devices have a pretty nice form factor, and I don’t really need a keyboard for all things.  But time and time again, I find that the apps that are available on Android just aren’t good enough.  They … Continue reading Android Is Still Fucking Useless

WFC Yemen: A New Day In Old Sana’a

(May 17, 2017)

This movie is fun. Some of the performances are kinda stylised, but when you’re delivering your lines from behind a veil, you have to go big or you don’t deliver the lines at all. This is a romantic comedy with mistaken identities and all kind of complications and it’s really funny. I love the actors, … Continue reading WFC Yemen: A New Day In Old Sana’a

WFC Moldova: Mama Illegal

(May 17, 2017)

Another documentary! And this is perhaps more Austrian than Moldovan? But it’s from Moldova, so… Anyway, this documentary is about Moldovan women who go to work in Europe (illegally, since Moldova isn’t part of the EU). Parts of it are kinda strange (as if the director had a murky agenda (like the extended scenes of … Continue reading WFC Moldova: Mama Illegal

WFC Marshall Islands: Ña noniep

(May 16, 2017)

This is a very, very low budget film, but even so, there’s no reason for it being this bad. The people involved probably had fun making it (I hope), and I’m sorry for harshing this much here, but: I am the Good Fairy. Jack Niedenthal. 2009. Marshall Islands. Marshall Island Swizzle 4 parts dark rum … Continue reading WFC Marshall Islands: Ña noniep

WFC Sierra Leone: Brownstones to Red Dirt

(May 16, 2017)

Oops. It a documentary (for children?), and it’s really more American than Sierra Leonish. (Is that a word?) Sorry! It’s packed with cheesy music and it’s chock full of snips of Things Kids Say. I mean, the kids are great and stuff, but the film is kind of pedestrian. Brownstones to Red Dirt. Dave LaMattina. … Continue reading WFC Sierra Leone: Brownstones to Red Dirt

My New Concert Blog

(May 10, 2017)

WFC Paraguay: 7 Cajas

(May 6, 2017)

Fantastic actors, especially the one playing Liz. And Tamara. Well, OK, all the female actors. The male actors are more variable. Very fresh cinematography and an intriguing plot. So: Yet another great South American film. It’s like a trend. This film is funny and exciting. 7 Boxes. Juan Carlos Maneglia. 2012. Paraguay. Paraguay Passion 2 … Continue reading WFC Paraguay: 7 Cajas

WFC Myanmar: Born Warriors Redux: Bound Fists

(May 6, 2017)

A documentary about boxing. Or something. It’s an interesting subject, but the film itself is very unambitious. Many of the fights are filmed with a single stationary camera, and there isn’t much of a narrative. It’s the usual TV documentary talking head/on location/talking head/on location thing. The way the narrator tries to say something but … Continue reading WFC Myanmar: Born Warriors Redux: Bound Fists

WFC Vanuatu: Tanna

(May 5, 2017)

Wow. So super-grainy. Haven’t seen grain like that since Aliens. Was it shot on digital with natural lighting or something? Anyway! There’s a lot of powerful scenes here. I laughed, I cried. The line readings are pretty stiff, though. Tanna. Martin Butler. 2015. Vanuatu. Japanese Slipper at Sunset Bungalows 1 part Midori 1 part Cointreau … Continue reading WFC Vanuatu: Tanna

WFC Kenya: Nairobi Half Life

(May 5, 2017)

Oh, this is so not my genre. It’s the old “naïve kid with dreams going to the big city” plot. I just sympathise too much with the hapless protagonist. “Nooo… doooon’t… Dooooon’t…” But that’s just me. This film has obvious qualities: Things degenerate (and how!) a lot faster than they usually do in these films, … Continue reading WFC Kenya: Nairobi Half Life

Dear Interwebs

(May 4, 2017)

Does a product that adds some level of organisasation to shelves like the one above exist? I need to know because reasons.

The Future is Here

(May 2, 2017)

The electric utility people came by to install those new-fangled wifi-enabled power meters today. After power-cycling my flat (only one device died!) all my computers are up again and I had a peek at the installation. So… there’s that thing. I assume that’s a wifi antenna? Mounted on the door? Wat… Oh, how elegant and … Continue reading The Future is Here

WFC Jordan: كابتن أبو رائد

(April 30, 2017)

Eek! The DVD version I bought is dubbed into German. I should start paying more attention when buying films… But! Amazon to the rescue. I downloaded a version in Arabic with English subtitles from Amazon (via my Ipod Touch). Phew! This is a very odd film structurally. It starts off slowly and the characters’ story … Continue reading WFC Jordan: كابتن أبو رائد

WFC Somalia: Fishing Without Nets

(April 30, 2017)

It’s kinda interesting visually, but the constant shakycam is unpleasant to watch. The actors vary wildly: Some seem are pretty convincing but most are very stiff. (I’m assuming they’re non-professionals.) It’s not a bad film or anything, but it uses so many parts of The Hollywood How-To Book On Drama/Action Film-Making (scoring, editing, etc) that … Continue reading WFC Somalia: Fishing Without Nets

WFC Lebanon: سكر بنات

(April 30, 2017)

Very sassy. A classic Mediterranean feel good comedy. I guess I could be very critical of some bits (like the occasional shakycam and generally not very interesting cinematography), but the actors are so good and it’s all so touching and charming. So on charm alone: Caramel. Nadine Labaki. 2007. Lebanon. Jad Ballout’s Garcia’s Fattoush Cup … Continue reading WFC Lebanon: سكر بنات

New Music

(April 30, 2017)

Music I’ve bought this month.

WFC Singapore: Forever Fever

(April 29, 2017)

I had gotten the French version of the DVD. Ooops! But Amazon Video to the rescue. The picture was kinda washed out, though. Compare: That’s from the Amazon Video version. That’s from the DVD. The darks are really dark on the DVD, and the colours pop, while the Amazon version is pale and bland. Why … Continue reading WFC Singapore: Forever Fever

WFC Jamaica: Shottas

(April 29, 2017)

This is kinda fresh. It’s low budget but doesn’t really look it. It has a kind of charming swagger to it, both in the acting and the editing. It’s a child-like wish fulfilment fantasy. Only with guns and drugs. Very silly. Shottas. Cess Silvera. 2002. Jamaica. Body Heat 1 part lemon juice 3 parts orange … Continue reading WFC Jamaica: Shottas

WFC Kazakhstan: Tulpan

(April 29, 2017)

Ah. Back on DVD again, so the video quality is, like, better. Than Amazon Video. This is a very wind-blown, distracted film. Things seem to proceed sideways. It’s funny, but it’s just so slow. Sooo slow. And I love slow films. It has an abundance of charm. Love the actors and the steppe. Those poor … Continue reading WFC Kazakhstan: Tulpan

WFC Slovenia: Slovenka

(April 29, 2017)

Hey! It works! Very little artifacting and the audio/video sync is pretty solid. Oh! The film! It’s a very tense film. Very well done, extremely belivable and completely EEK. I can’t really recommend it. A Call Girl. Damjan Kozole. 2009. Slovenia. The Peter XOXO 2 parts vodka 1 part sweet vermouth 1 part dry vermouth … Continue reading WFC Slovenia: Slovenka

… when we first practice to watch some movies

(April 29, 2017)

As I’m sure you remember from yesterday, I got an external HDMI screenshotting box to do screenshots while watching films from Amazon Video. That worked fine, but using an infra-red remote to trigger the screenshots is slightly awkward: The line of sight thing means that I either have to have the (not very pretty) box … Continue reading … when we first practice to watch some movies

WFC Nigeria: Half of a Yellow Sun

(April 28, 2017)

Tech progress report: I’m watching this via Amazon Prime (+ HDMI dongle etc), but the novel thing this time is that I downloaded the film before viewing. And this time there were no glitches! So the problem experienced the last time is apparently not because of the HDMI dongle thing, but because of the streaming. … Continue reading WFC Nigeria: Half of a Yellow Sun

The Tangled Webs We Weave…

(April 28, 2017)

My mission: To watch films from all around the world.  My problem: Many films are only available on Amazon Prime (US Edition).  My solution: Errr… In this part of this (seemingly never-ending series) I’ve reached the point where I’m able to watch Amazon Prime videos, but taking screenshots while doing so (AND I HAVE TO … Continue reading The Tangled Webs We Weave…

WFC Afghanistan: سنگ صبور

(April 28, 2017)

So for this film I watched it via Amazon Prime on the Ipad via an HDMI dongle. It works kinda OK, but there’s general jerkiness that appears irregularly. It’s like it drops a couple of frames every so often. It’s not very pleasant to watch, so I’, not using this method again, I think… Perhaps … Continue reading WFC Afghanistan: سنگ صبور

My New Concert Blog

(April 26, 2017)

I’m Pretty Sure I Didn’t Agree To This

(April 24, 2017)

TSP1994: Visions of Heaven and Hell

(April 22, 2017)

Hey!  It’s time for that yearly Google session to try to find the missing films for my Tilda Swinton project. Unfortunately, nothing new seems to be available (although The Dilapidated Dwelling seems to have been available on Youtube for a bit of time before being deleted).  Boo! But a kind reader had pointed me towards … Continue reading TSP1994: Visions of Heaven and Hell

TSP2016: Doctor Strange

(April 22, 2017)

Doctor Strange. Scott Derrickson. 2016. This is an amusing film, but any scene where they attempt gravitas, it goes into snooze land. Well, almost. But still: Much amusement. One of the more successful super hero films for sure, but it’s not like there’s a lot of competition. This post is part of The Tilda Swinton … Continue reading TSP2016: Doctor Strange

WFC Mozambique: Terra Sonâmbula

(April 13, 2017)

Wow. This is so lo-res. What’s up with Amazon Prime videos? They have no quality control? This is worse than watching a VCD episode of The Simpsons in 1997. Oh! The film! It’s good and very sad. Great actors. The cinematography is indifferent, but the film has a great moody mood. Very intriguing structurally, too. … Continue reading WFC Mozambique: Terra Sonâmbula

WFC Panama: Contadora is for Lovers

(April 13, 2017)

It’s very educational. And subtle. Drama! And then… not. I watched this via Amazon Prime, but I just noticed that it’s also available on DVD. I should have gotten that instead, because the Prime version of the film is pitiful. Not only are there compression artifacts all over the stage (descending into abstraction when there’s … Continue reading WFC Panama: Contadora is for Lovers

My New Concert Blog

(April 12, 2017)

Whoo.

WFC Suriname: Wan Pipel

(April 10, 2017)

Another film found on Youtube. It’s a very earnest film. There are good bits, but nothing really convinces. Wan Pipel. Pim de la Parra. 1976. Suriname. The Paramaribo Park Club Gin Sling 1 part lemon juice 1 part Cherry Heering 3 parts gin a dash of Cognac a dash of Benedictine club soda Shake with … Continue reading WFC Suriname: Wan Pipel

WFC Uganda: Who Killed Captain Alex?

(April 10, 2017)

I couldn’t find any Ugandan DVDs, so this is from the Youtubes. As this er edition of the film explains, the director didn’t have any expectations of people outside his city seeing this film: It’s more of a fun hobby project than something meant for the general public, I think. I thought it had an … Continue reading WFC Uganda: Who Killed Captain Alex?

WFC Ghana: Cobra Verde

(April 8, 2017)

Oops! My research department has let me down. Again! This isn’t a Ghanese film: The director is Werner Herzog (not from Ghana), it’s based on a novel written by Bruce Chatwin (not from Ghana) and starring Klaus Kinski (not from Ghaha). But it’s filmed in Ghana, allegedly. Anyway, I didn’t realise that the Herzog/Kinski partnership … Continue reading WFC Ghana: Cobra Verde

WFC Switzerland: Vitus

(April 8, 2017)

I mean, I don’t really know German, but the dialect they’re talking here is even less comprehensible than usual. Anyway, it’s a kinda old-fashioned film. An “issue” movie. The issue this week is: Is putting too much pressure on a child prodigy a good idea? (I’ll let you guess the answer.) It’s all a bit … Continue reading WFC Switzerland: Vitus

WFC Zambia: Imiti ikula

(April 8, 2017)

I knew there was going to be a number of Youtube films as I got close to the end of this blog series, because there’s a number of countries where either no “commercial” films have been made or none have made it out of the country. So I was originally planning on doing as many … Continue reading WFC Zambia: Imiti ikula

WFC Rwanda: Munyurangabo

(April 8, 2017)

Part XIV In The Quest To Watch Films Via Amazon Video: So, I couldn’t use my large Ipad to watch these films, because the Amazon app didn’t allow screenshotting. (So very DRM.) And besides, the Apple screenshotting thing is really, really annoying: Flashing the screen and all that. (It’s a very typical Apple thing: Create … Continue reading WFC Rwanda: Munyurangabo

WFC Trinidad and Tobago: God Loves the Fighter

(April 7, 2017)

I think the filmmakers tried to make a “cool” movie like, say, Trainspotting. Only in Trinidad (and/or Tobago). I’m not big fan of that film, but it did have certain undeniable charms (it’s certainly the high point of Danny Boyle’s horrid carreer). This film does not. It’s tedious. The only thing that saves it from … Continue reading WFC Trinidad and Tobago: God Loves the Fighter

WFC Guatemala: Ixcanul

(April 7, 2017)

After a few not very good films from Central America, I wasn’t expecting much from this film, but it’s really good! Wonderful cinematography; great actors (well, probably non-professionals, but they’re convincing) and a plot I had no idea where was going. Oh, it won a prize at the Berlin film festival, the only film festival … Continue reading WFC Guatemala: Ixcanul

I’m pretty sure I haven’t ordered powdered peanut butter

(April 7, 2017)

New Music

(April 5, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week. And that concludes The Great Resampling.

WFC Guinea-Bissau: A batalha de Tabatô

(April 3, 2017)

This is a visually arresting film. Some seemingly very strange choices have been made, but it works. I first thought that the actors (and their line readings) we uncomfortably stiff, but then I realised that that’s what the director was going for (a la Robert Bresson). Mesmerising. The Battle of Tabato. João Viana. 2013. Guinea-Bissau. … Continue reading WFC Guinea-Bissau: A batalha de Tabatô

WFC Iraq: Curse of Mesopotamia

(April 3, 2017)

Man, modern life is complicated. I was going to watch this on my big Ipad, but it turns out that you can’t screenshot this film there, even though the previous film let itself be screenshot. So I had to scramble (since the cocktail was already made) and watched the film on my 10″ Android tablet. … Continue reading WFC Iraq: Curse of Mesopotamia

WFC Lesotho: The Forgotten Kingdom

(April 1, 2017)

After a very pleasurable experience watching The Cave of the Yellow Dog, this was a bit of a downer. It’s all so… paint by numbers. Daddy issues and people talking and talking and talkin to each other about deep, deep stuff. It’s like, zzz. It’s not offensively bad or anything: It’s competent, which is the … Continue reading WFC Lesotho: The Forgotten Kingdom

WFC Mongolia: Шар нохойн там

(April 1, 2017)

The children in this film are wonderful. The adult actors are more variable, but they’re fine. Lots of beautiful scenery and a very vague storyline makes this a very endearing film. It’s such an unassuming film: Nothing very dramatic happens, but it’s so enjoyable to watch. While it isn’t a masterpiece or anything, it’s kinda … Continue reading WFC Mongolia: Шар нохойн там

WFC Guinea: Dakan

(March 31, 2017)

I… was not prepared for this film! So many great and weird shots. Coupled with the sheer amateurishness of the acting, the lines and… well, everything, it’s just mind-bogglingly fun to watch. Part of the charm is host the aesthetics resemble 60s no-budget films coupled with a storyline about a gay relationship makes this seem … Continue reading WFC Guinea: Dakan

WFC Haiti: Meurtre à Pacot

(March 31, 2017)

The DVD transfer is kinda odd and choppy. It’s like every seventh frame two frames have been dropped or something. As usual, Alex Descas is absolutely amazing in the lead role (as l’homme). The rest of the actors are variable, but fine. This film is about the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, and … Continue reading WFC Haiti: Meurtre à Pacot

New Music

(March 29, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

BD80: Tendre Violette

(March 26, 2017)

Tendre Violette by Servais & Dewamme (1981) Both Jean-Claude Servais (the artist) and Gérard Dewamme (the writer) are Belgian, which makes a first for this week’s little trip through Franco-Belgian comics, I think? All the other ones have been French. Very French. These stories were originally serialised in the Belgian (À suivre) magazine. I’m not … Continue reading BD80: Tendre Violette

WFC Fiji: Kya Dilli Kya Lahore

(March 26, 2017)

It’s another one of those anti war satires! But this is rather amusing. I think, though, that it’s not a very Fijian film, so, er, foiled again. It’s rather incomprehensible. The lines are like “That’s why you also gave him two roses” which I take is referring to something, somewhere in the India/Pakistan war history, … Continue reading WFC Fiji: Kya Dilli Kya Lahore

Ipad, Screenshots and Linux

(March 25, 2017)

It’s become increasingly clear over the past few months that many recent, fun-sounding films from countries with smaller film industries will never get a physical DVD release. The only way to see these films is via Amazon Prime, and since Amazon Prime isn’t conveniently available on Linux machines, I’m having to use an Ipad to … Continue reading Ipad, Screenshots and Linux

WFC North Korea: A State of Mind

(March 24, 2017)

This isn’t really a North Korean film, because those don’t seem to exists outside of North Korea? But it’s a film about North Korea, so… This is a documentary about some gymnasts. And their parents and teachers and stuff. The filmmaker is sympathetic towards the people he portrays, I think, but the things these people … Continue reading WFC North Korea: A State of Mind

WFC Laos: ນ້ອງຮັກ

(March 24, 2017)

This is my first attempt at watching a film via Amazon Prime. So many films these days never get a DVD release. Instead, the only way to watch these films seem to be via Amazon. You can’t even find them via dar torrentzes. In an additional twist, films are only licensed for US viewers, so … Continue reading WFC Laos: ນ້ອງຮັກ

BD80: Gotlib

(March 24, 2017)

Rhââ Lovely 1 by Gotlib (1976) Gotlib was a prolific cartoonist, working from the mid-sixties until his recent death. He started out doing comics for the French Pilote magazine before co-founding two magazines, l’Echo des savanes and Fluide Glacial. Out of his dozens of albums, c. nothing has been translated to other languages. Runepress made … Continue reading BD80: Gotlib

BD80: Le génie des Alpages

(March 23, 2017)

Le génie des Alpages by F’Murr (1976) Comme des bêtes by F’Murr (1977) Le génie des Alpages is a series started by F’Murr(r) in 1973. It was originally serialised in the French Pilote magazine and then collected in albums from 1976 on. The Norwegian editions I have seem to (unusually enough) to track the French … Continue reading BD80: Le génie des Alpages

BD80: Caza

(March 22, 2017)

Scènes de la vie de banlieue by Caza (1979) Caza is a prolific French artist (real name Philippe Cazaumayou) who has been doing comics since the early 70s (and continues to publish to this day). However, very little has been translated into any language I can read. (Except various stuff in various issues of Heavy … Continue reading BD80: Caza

New Music

(March 22, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

BD80: Rebecca

(March 21, 2017)

Rebecca by Brandoli & Queirolo (1985) Neither Anna Brandoli (artist) nor Renato Queirolo (writer) are prolific comics makers. Together, they’ve published five albums, and Brandoli has made one additional book without Queirolo. Rebecca remains their most well-known work. Rebecca began publication in the Italian monthly magazine linus (all in lower case, for some reason) in … Continue reading BD80: Rebecca

BD80: Simon du Fleuve

(March 20, 2017)

The first batch of French(ish) comics I wrote a bit about a year and a half ago were mostly all comics that I had read many, many times as a teenager. This time out, I remember even less about these comics than I did the last time. First we have Simon du Fleuve (which means … Continue reading BD80: Simon du Fleuve

BD80 Reloaded

(March 20, 2017)

Almost two years ago, I did a small series of posts on a bunch of Franco/Belgian comics. The urge to write about another small stack of them hit me all of a sudden, so: As with the previous series, I’ll be covering works that aren’t well-known these days. There’s not that much point in writing … Continue reading BD80 Reloaded

WFC Pakistan: دختر‎

(March 18, 2017)

Hey! Clever film-making. I thought this film was totally going one way, but then it swerved a completely different way. Me like. It’s very exciting (in parts), has great cinematography (although the scenery is sometimes so pretty you might suspect it’s been sponsored by The Tourist Council of Northern Pakistan) and the actors are somewhere … Continue reading WFC Pakistan: دختر‎

WFC Dominican Republic: Guaguasi

(March 18, 2017)

It turns out that Batista’s police weren’t very nice. This film has its charms, but it’s really oddly paced. It’s a satirical look at the Cuban revolution with an, er, simple? (OK, developmentally challenged) “hick” at the center of the story. Horror ensues. It’s a comedy of the “scathing satire” kind, which means that there … Continue reading WFC Dominican Republic: Guaguasi

WFC Kyrgyzstan: Beshkempir

(March 17, 2017)

Quite Felliniesque. Man, the director put his young actors through a lot of really embarrasing scenes. And they do them very convincingly. For the most part. Sometimes when they have to emote too much it breaks down. I love the quiet scenes where the grandmothers are just working at some task or other, like spinning … Continue reading WFC Kyrgyzstan: Beshkempir

WFC Cuba: ¡Vampiros en La Habana!

(March 17, 2017)

Some jokes I just didn’t get. Other jokes are easier. Until… Well, it’s like nothing else I’ve ever seen (vampires and mobsters and revolutionaries and oh my), and the madcap pace it’s going at is charming. But it didn’t make me laugh. It’s amusing. Vampires in Havana. Juan Padrón. 1985. Cuba. Cuban Old Fashioned sugar … Continue reading WFC Cuba: ¡Vampiros en La Habana!

New Music

(March 15, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

My New Concert Blog vs Useful Consumer Review

(March 14, 2017)

I’ve been using a Panasonic GH4 camera for a couple of years to do concerts.  It’s a very nice camera, but it has a few problems.  1) When recording video, it splits the video into 4GB chunks that I then have to piece together.  It’s not a biggie, but it’s annoying.  2) More seriously, the … Continue reading My New Concert Blog vs Useful Consumer Review

Hard Boiled Monster Comics

(March 12, 2017)

When I started the Fantagraphics re-reading project, I wasn’t really aware of the Monster and Hard-Boiled imprints. So when I bought a bunch of these comics and had a peek at them, I quickly decided to limit the project to “main-line Fantagraphics” only. It was spiralling out of control, anyway, so any way of limiting … Continue reading Hard Boiled Monster Comics

Groovy

(March 12, 2017)

I’m resampling a lot of vinyl these days (because I got a spiffy record player and the earliest albums I sampled back in the 90s I only have in mp3 (and crappy mp3 at that), and I have to have everything in flac). You know. It makes sense. So the other day I was sampling … Continue reading Groovy

Twitter Translates

(March 12, 2017)

I just noticed that Twitter helpfully offers to translate twitterers: Well, that’s reasonable… That’s…  a guess, I guess? !?!?!1? To conclude: The AI revolution isn’t going to happen any time soon.

WFC Honduras: The Zwickys

(March 11, 2017)

Some of the actors here are quite good, but the film doesn’t quite gel. And the hand-held camera is a bit on the annoying side. It’s an odd plot, and it grows weirder as the film progresses. But not in a good way. The Zwickys. Andres Valle, Carlos Valle. 2014. Honduras. Monkey La La 1 … Continue reading WFC Honduras: The Zwickys

WFC Liechtenstein: Der heiße Tod

(March 11, 2017)

While researching films from Liechtenstein, I was intrigued by the extreme number of porn-sounding late sixties/early seventies films marked as being “from” Liechtenstein. I have no idea what’s that’s all about: Did Liechtenstein have looser porn laws back then? So I picked this one because it had a pretty high rating (4.8, ahem) among this … Continue reading WFC Liechtenstein: Der heiße Tod

House of Women

(March 8, 2017)

After being exhausted by the Fantagraphics marathon I’ve somewhat avoided comics, but all exhaustion must come to an end, so I bought House of Women by Sophie Goldstein. I don’t really want to review it (it’s a sci-fi gothic horror story, I guess), because I don’t really have much to say other than “I liked … Continue reading House of Women

One Thing Leads To Another

(March 8, 2017)

In the previous installment, I got a new monitor for my stereo computer. I thought everything was fine, but then I started noticing stuttering on flac playback. After some investigation, it seems as if X is on (and displaying stuff on this new, bigger monitor), and there’s network traffic, then the flac123 process is starved … Continue reading One Thing Leads To Another

New Music

(March 8, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

Mystery Object

(March 3, 2017)

I’ve been a bit under the weather the past few days, but today I finally made my way to the post office and collected various packages.  Among these was a package from a store I had ordered a bunch of LED lighting strips for the kitchen. Included was this pink mystery USB object, not mentioned … Continue reading Mystery Object

New Music

(March 1, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

WFC New Zealand: 50 Ways of Saying Fabulous

(February 25, 2017)

Is that… Donald!? Uhm… it would have been nice if this had been subtitled. But I got the gist! This film has 5.8 (of 10) on imdb, and I think that’s as low as the scale goes. That’s harsh! As Wikipedia says, “The film opened in 2005 to negative reviews and had little success at … Continue reading WFC New Zealand: 50 Ways of Saying Fabulous

WFC Peru: La teta asustada

(February 25, 2017)

This film won “best film” at the Berlin film festival, and as film prizes go, that’s the one to win, I think. (I mean, if something wins the a major award, it’s usually drek.) And this is absolutely riveting and very strange and funny. And heartbreaking. I’m not going to spoil the, er, plot, but … Continue reading WFC Peru: La teta asustada

It’s Xmas Again

(February 25, 2017)

CEC HDMI ETLA

(February 25, 2017)

I’m extremely lazy, so using a remote control to switch the TV on or off is just out of the question. The remote is just languishing in a cupboard somewhere, and the TV is always on. Which seems like a waste, since I only use it (like) a couple of days a week or something. … Continue reading CEC HDMI ETLA

WFC Croatia: Ta divna splitska noć

(February 24, 2017)

Hm… This sort of playful artsy fartsy film is right up my alley, but I just didn’t feel it. So I instead spent most of the time wondering why the scenes just didn’t connect (for me). Some of the actors are really good (the mother and the boy) and some are kinda meh (that scraggly-bearded … Continue reading WFC Croatia: Ta divna splitska noć

WFC Morocco: L’armée du salut

(February 24, 2017)

It’s a captivating and bewildering film. Very original from a storytelling and structural point of view. And very nicely shot. I can’t quite make out whether the actors are meant to be this stylised and stiff or whether they’re just not, er, all that good, but it kinda works anyway. The mother’s great. The film … Continue reading WFC Morocco: L’armée du salut

New Music

(February 22, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week. I found the “box of not very interesting albums” in the basement (I think that must have been my criterion when sorting records into the box), but I’ve gotta resample them all. Plus some new stuff.

My New Concert Blog

(February 15, 2017)

Oops.  And then I deleted the next set while trying to copy it from the SD card…

New Music

(February 15, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

I ❤ The Paris Review

(February 15, 2017)

My favourite thing to read while travelling is The Paris Review.  It has like full-spectrum literature that’s perfect for reading while getting slightly drunk on airplanes. So I just bought a whole stack of old issues from the sixties, seventies and eighties.  You can still get them pretty cheap from sources on the interwebs. Man, … Continue reading I ❤ The Paris Review

WFC Ecuador: Feriado

(February 11, 2017)

Very metal. I finally went through the curiosly divisioned (is that a word?) “Spanish/South American/African” shelves at the video store. As suspected, it was 87% Spanish, 22% Mexican and 13% “other”. (Lots of copro-ductions.) I only found two films from countries previously not covered (of which this is one), so it’s getting really difficult to … Continue reading WFC Ecuador: Feriado

WFC Norway: Reprise

(February 11, 2017)

*gasp* Norway! Such a frustrating film. There are long stretches here of pure bewildering genius where I’m going THIS IS THE BEST FILM EVER. And then there are scenes where it all falls flat and I’m all “perhaps this would have worked with better actors or lines or a better director or SOMETHING”. It’s written … Continue reading WFC Norway: Reprise

WFC Central African Republic: Song from the Forest

(February 10, 2017)

This is a documentary (I think… or is it!?) filmed in the Central African Republic, but it’s really more a US/German film than anything else. Most of the dialogue is in English, but the DVD is subtitled in German only. So when the people who are speaking the language people in Ködörösêse tî Bêafrîka use, … Continue reading WFC Central African Republic: Song from the Forest

WFC Cabo Verde: O Testamento do Senhor Napumoceno

(February 10, 2017)

I guess Cabo Verde is too small to show up on the map there… Google! Be better! We’re getting to smaller countries now in this blog series (size-wise or film industry wise (we’re nearly half way)), so the question “is this really a film from ?” is getting slightly more iffy. IMDB lists this one … Continue reading WFC Cabo Verde: O Testamento do Senhor Napumoceno

New Music

(February 7, 2017)

Music I’ve bought and/or resampled this week.

Blackest Night

(February 7, 2017)

Previously: I bought an HDMI OLED screen and determined that its black pixels emitted light. This made me start wondering: Do all OLED screens emit light from “black” pixels? So I did the simplest thing possible to test this: I made a little app that displays a black screen. It’s on Google Play and everything. … Continue reading Blackest Night

WFC Cameroon: Aristotle’s Plot

(February 4, 2017)

Wow. Such a fresh film. I can see some Godard influences, perhaps, but it’s quite unlike anything I’ve seen. It’s like… Michel Gondry ten years before Michel Gondry. Very meta and quite funny. I found their dialect sometimes hard to follow, though. *concentrate* I switched on the French subtitles to help understanding, and I don’t … Continue reading WFC Cameroon: Aristotle’s Plot

WFC Côte d’Ivoire: La Victoire en chantant

(February 4, 2017)

Uh-oh. That’s not a good sign. I guess that this film is really rather more French than Cote de Ivoirean? (That’s probably not a word.) And it’s a “satire”, which is usually code word for “not actually funny”. MUCH BITE SATIRE An it is, indeed, a bit eye-rolling-ey at times. But it’s not bad. Black … Continue reading WFC Côte d’Ivoire: La Victoire en chantant

WFC Cambodia: នៅកម្លោះដល់ណាខ្ញុំ

(February 3, 2017)

Ahh! A lighthearted goofy comedy. Somehow those aren’t the films that are usually exported from non-major-film-producing countries. It’s always the serious or artsy films. And I love serious artsy films, but c’mon. Unfortunately, this film also illustrates why these films aren’t exported. There’s just not very much about this film that’s memorable. It’s amusing. Staying … Continue reading WFC Cambodia: នៅកម្លោះដល់ណាខ្ញុំ

WFC Palestine: عمر

(February 3, 2017)

Hm… I can’t see the pixels on that map… There’s lots of stuff here to like. The courtship scenes are really sweet, lots of amusing and real-sounding dialogue, some of the actors are good, and all the parkour is invigorating. But. Everything is so damn obvious. I was shouting at the screen when the al-Aqsa … Continue reading WFC Palestine: عمر

Blacker than Black? A Small Monitor Review

(February 2, 2017)

I’ve been using an Emacs-based alarm clock for almost a decade through various hardware incarnations. The main issue is the screen: It’s difficult to find a small screen that has a good black level. The last version used this USB IPS screen from MIMO, and it’s just about as good as you can get with … Continue reading Blacker than Black? A Small Monitor Review

My New Concert Blog

(February 1, 2017)

Obelisk: A Monitor Review

(January 30, 2017)

I’ve had the same monitor in my stereo control system for many years. It’s a 20″ Dell that’s OK. It’s got an appropriate size for the living room. But lately it’s started having a high-pitched whine. If I play only punk music I can’t hear it at all, but otherwise it’s slightly annoying. So I … Continue reading Obelisk: A Monitor Review

WFC Great Britain: Ex Machina

(January 29, 2017)

Look! Now we can save money on the special effects budget! I thought I was going to enjoy this one, despite the many positive reviews it’s gotten. But it’s totally snoozeville with most plot developments signalled several hours before the movie even starts. The ending was fun, though. Ex Machina. Alex Garland. 2015. Great Britain. … Continue reading WFC Great Britain: Ex Machina

WFC Thailand: สุดเสน่หา

(January 28, 2017)

Long takes with a mostly distant, mostly stationary camera. It’s kinda hypnotic. Nothing much happens for minutes on end, just people talking about inconsequential things. Very stylish in its non-stylishness. Plot-wise, nothing is explained, and all the people seem to be telling half-truths to each other, and doing very odd things. But gradually things come … Continue reading WFC Thailand: สุดเสน่หา

WFC Georgia: გრძელი ნათელი დღეები

(January 28, 2017)

Very lively camera without being actually shakycam. It’s a fascinating film, although it becomes very apparent early on (in a Chekhovian sense) what’s going to happen. I had a hard time telling the characters apart. It would have helped if one of the girls had an eye patch or a wooden leg or something. In … Continue reading WFC Georgia: გრძელი ნათელი დღეები

My New Concert Blog

(January 18, 2017)

Half Page BD: An RT Investigation

(January 16, 2017)

A while ago I read the following in an article on Hooded Utilitarian: […] the revolution that really drove Heavy Metal was very distinctly French and had a lot more to do with the format of how French comics were serialized than with any kind of musical aesthetic, something that is largely transparent to Anglophones. … Continue reading Half Page BD: An RT Investigation

All Ears 2017: Day Three

(January 15, 2017)

 

All Ears 2017: Day Two

(January 14, 2017)

I’ve always loved the sound of a steam iron.

All Ears 2017: Day One

(January 13, 2017)

WFC Czech Republic: Transport z ráje

(January 9, 2017)

We spend so much time with the Nazi madmen that they turn into more interesting characters than the suffering and/or bemused Jews, which is perhaps not the effect the director was after. The actors are, in general, not very compelling, but the director is probably not going for naturalism, anyway? The mixture of interesting stylisation … Continue reading WFC Czech Republic: Transport z ráje

WFC Serbia: Otac na službenom putu

(January 7, 2017)

OK, the cocktail isn’t Serbian (but I googled for half an hour and didn’t find any recipes), and the film is Yugoslavian and is set in Sarajevo, but… Kinda quirky film. It won a Cannes award and is apparently well-regarded, but I was just bored silly. I didn’t find the performances very convincing, and the … Continue reading WFC Serbia: Otac na službenom putu

Fantagraphics Floppies Redux

(January 6, 2017)

Done! Perhaps I should just leave it at that, but I feel like bloviating a bit. (“NO!  REALLY?”) But at the end of this post, there’ll be an index. Feel free to skip to it if you’re the index reading kind of person. (The following should probably be read in the voice of Comic Book … Continue reading Fantagraphics Floppies Redux

FF2016: Love and Rockets

(January 5, 2017)

Love and Rockets volume 4 #1 by Jaime Hernandez and Gilbert Hernandez. So here we are: The final post in this blog series about Fantagraphics comic book comics. And eerily enough, we end with the same series we started with: Love and Rockets. I didn’t plan this, but the first issue in the new series … Continue reading FF2016: Love and Rockets

Vinyl Noise

(January 4, 2017)

I’m still buying a lot of music on vinyl. Not because it’s hip: I was buying vinyl long before hipsters did. (That’s code for “old”.) I had one record player for decades that was cheap, but pretty OK. But it had one major problem: There was a lot of deep rumble. Not horrible-sounding, but still… … Continue reading Vinyl Noise

FF1990: Fringe/Fauna

(January 4, 2017)

The Fauna Rebellion #1-3, Adventures on the Fringe #1-5 by R. L. Crabb. Fantagraphics had previously published The Natural Enquirer by 70s underground veteran R. L. Crabb. The Fauna Rebellion was apparently created in the mid-80s, but not published until 1990. It’s about animals staging a rebellion against humans. The joke above is typical for … Continue reading FF1990: Fringe/Fauna

FF2001: Fuzz & Pluck in Splitsville

(January 3, 2017)

Fuzz & Pluck in Splitsville #1-5 by Ted Stearn. The physical format of this series is reminiscent of La Perdida, published a few years earlier: It’s slightly smaller than standard US comic book size, is thick (most issues are 48 pages) and has stiff covers. We last saw our plucky pair in the Zero Zero … Continue reading FF2001: Fuzz & Pluck in Splitsville

FF1991: Perramus: Escape from the Past

(January 2, 2017)

Perramus: Escape from the Past by Alberto Breccia and Juan Sasturain. Hi! I had hoped to end this blog series about Fantagraphics last year, but having the scheduling slide is so very Fantagraphics, isn’t it? Only three more posts to go, though. Very early-90s Fantagraphics design courtesy of Dale Yarger. Anyway, strangely enough, I did … Continue reading FF1991: Perramus: Escape from the Past

More Fun With Google Geocharts

(January 1, 2017)

I’ve been using Google Geocharts to create nice world maps for my World of Films and Cocktail blogging project. It’s a pretty good service, but it doesn’t really have all the bells and whistles I need to customize the interactive version the way I want. But today I’m hung over, and I got down to … Continue reading More Fun With Google Geocharts

FF1996: Coventry

(December 24, 2016)

Coventry #1-3 by Bill Willingham. Willingham is known these days for writing Fables, the Vertigo series re-appropriating fairy tale figures, but in the 90s he was doing things like Ironwood and Time Wankers for Eros Comix, the Fantagraphics imprint. I think I assumed at the time that Coventry was more of the same, but it … Continue reading FF1996: Coventry

FF1992: Trailer Trash

(December 23, 2016)

Trailer Trash #1-9 by Roy Tompkins. If you were to rifle through Trailer Trash, you would probably assume that this was going to be a book of nihilist violent gross-out fun like, say, Angry Youth Comics. The internal monologues from the viewpoint characters keeps on coming, which seems rather outdated these days, I guess: Every … Continue reading FF1992: Trailer Trash

FF1993: Idiotland

(December 22, 2016)

Idiotland #1-7 by Doug Allen and Gary Leib. Doug Allen is best known for Steven, I think, while Leib has appeared in a number of anthologies. Idiotland was a shared series: They both do solo pieces, but the majority of the work seems to be collaborative. This is a humour anthology with about half a … Continue reading FF1993: Idiotland

The Best Comics of 2016

(December 21, 2016)

Another year gone, and another group of comics that migrated to the “hm, that was interesting” little bookshelf thing in my living room after I’d read them. Let’s have a look, first at the books that were actually published in 2016. Since that’s the name of this blog post. Logical, right? I’m very logical. Late … Continue reading The Best Comics of 2016

My New Concert Blog

(December 21, 2016)

FF1993: Palestine

(December 21, 2016)

Palestine #1-9 by Joe Sacco. Last time we visited Sacco (which was with Yahoo), we saw that he had gotten a burgeoning interest in journalism, war and Palestinians. So doing an extended reportage tour to Palestine (and Israel) and a comic book series was the logical progression from that. Tackling a serious subject doesn’t mean … Continue reading FF1993: Palestine

FF1996: Villa of the Mysteries

(December 20, 2016)

Villa of the Mysteries #1-2 by Mack White. My goal for this blog series was to (re-)read all Fantagraphics comic book comics, but, dear reader, I have to let you know that I failed! Failed, I tell you! I have been unable to acquire the third issue of this comic, even going so far as … Continue reading FF1996: Villa of the Mysteries

FF1991: A Couple of Winos

(December 19, 2016)

A Couple of Winos by Matthias Schultheiss from a story by Charles Bukowski. Fantagraphics’ early attempts at publishing European comics was often rather awkward, trying to fit material made for different formats into something they could entice an American audience to buy. But this time it kinda works. Schultheiss’ artwork here looks like a mash-up … Continue reading FF1991: A Couple of Winos

FF1991: Check-Up/Unseen

(December 18, 2016)

Check-Up #1, Sight Unseen by James Sturm. We last saw James Sturm just a few days ago in this blog series with his Cereal Killings comic book. Check-Up seem to be going for a classic Fantagraphics single author anthology vibe: It’s even published in magazine size, just like Neat Stuff and Lloyd Llewellyn. So you … Continue reading FF1991: Check-Up/Unseen

WFC Slovakia: Obrazy starého sveta

(December 17, 2016)

Utterly entrancing. I’m not sure how much of it is real, though. It seems to present itself as a documentary of sorts, and some of the people (or characters) we see seem rather, uhm, unlikely. If it’s all real, the film-makers are kinda cruel with their subjects. I couldn’t believe it when I saw the … Continue reading WFC Slovakia: Obrazy starého sveta

WFC Bosnia and Herzegovina: Go West

(December 17, 2016)

This DVD edition was pretty unsatisfactory. It’s windowboxed and interlaced, so it’s pretty low resolution, which makes everything… ugly. This film is exactly like Some Like It Hot, but with atrocities and ethnic cleansing. It veers wildly between sincere horror and absurd comedy. And sometimes tender comedy. I appreciate what they were trying to do … Continue reading WFC Bosnia and Herzegovina: Go West

FF1991: Loose Teeth

(December 17, 2016)

Loose Teeth #1-3 by Scott Musgrove and Brian Sendelbach. Both Musgrove and Sendelbach had appeared in various anthologies before doing Loose Teeth together. This series has solo pieces from both of them, but they also collaborate on a number of stories. The first issue opens with a competition of sorts: Readers are invited to send … Continue reading FF1991: Loose Teeth

WFC Colombia: El abrazo de la serpiente

(December 16, 2016)

How delightfully perverse to do a black-and-white film set in the Amazon. And there should be an expression for “road movie” that takes place on a river. But all throughout this film (which is mostly pretty amazing), I was thinking “they’re going to do the ‘insane in the jungle’ cliche complete with atrocities”, and they … Continue reading WFC Colombia: El abrazo de la serpiente

WFC Chad: Daratt

(December 16, 2016)

This is a fascinating and original film. The confusing thing is that we don’t see them selling any bread whatsoever. Is it all charity? Dry Season. Mahamat-Saleh Haroun. 2006. Chad. Karkanji half a liter of water a small handful of dried hibiscus flowers some slices of ginger root 1 cinnamon stick 3 cloves sugar to … Continue reading WFC Chad: Daratt

FF2004: The Mystery of Woolverine Woo-Bait

(December 16, 2016)

The Mystery of Woolverine Woo-Bait by Joe Coleman. This is the third and final internet-acquired comic for this blog series (sorry!): Some books are just impossible to find. I can perhaps understand the scarcity of copies in this case. Joe Coleman is a pretty famous artist, and this is his only published comic book. That … Continue reading FF2004: The Mystery of Woolverine Woo-Bait

FF1992: The Cereal Killings

(December 15, 2016)

The Cereal Killings #1-8 by James Sturm. This series passed my completely by when it was released in the 90s. I’ve read most of his later stuff, like Market Day and The Golem’s Mighty Swing, which are both very earnest, so I was curious what a book with such a punny name would read like… … Continue reading FF1992: The Cereal Killings

The Best Albums of 2016

(December 14, 2016)

Once again, Emacs has tallied up what albums I’ve listened to most this year, and must therefore be the best music released in 2016. Grumbling Fur Preternaturals Dani Siciliano Dani Siciliano Anohni Hopelessness Babyfather Meditation PJ Harvey The Hope Six Demolition Project Copeland & Gast Sisters of Control DJ Nigga Fox Noite e dia Lolina … Continue reading The Best Albums of 2016

FF1988: Yahoo/Spotlight

(December 14, 2016)

Yahoo #1-6, Spotlight on the Genius That Is Joe Sacco by Joe Sacco. We last saw Sacco in this blog series in Centrifugal Bumple-Puppy (by emacs! When was that? This summer? Feels like several years ago…). Sacco was the editor of this quite successful humour anthology (well, artistically, not commercially, I guess), and he went … Continue reading FF1988: Yahoo/Spotlight

FF1996: Art & Beauty Magazine

(December 13, 2016)

Art & Beauty Magazine #1-2 by Robert Crumb. I should have covered this series in the other Crumb blog post, but I just couldn’t find the second issue anywhere. I still haven’t, so, er, a copy fell off a truck. On the internet. And landed in my tablet. That’s my story and I’m sticking to … Continue reading FF1996: Art & Beauty Magazine

FF1995: Schizo

(December 12, 2016)

Schizo #1-4 by Ivan Brunetti. I remember reading the first two issues in the mid-90s and being really impressed by their intensity. In my mind, the books were like a midway point between Scott Russo’s Jizz and Johnny Ryan’s Angry Youth Comix. That is, on the continuum from pure misanthropic rant (Jizz) to pure misanthropic … Continue reading FF1995: Schizo

FF1991: Playgrounds

(December 11, 2016)

Playgrounds #1 by Peter Rees. In the Obscure Fantagraphics Publications Derby, I think this probably takes the prize: I can’t find any reviews of it on the web or in The Comics Journal, but a mention in a comments page tells me that this was originally published in New Zealand, and then republished by Fantagraphics. … Continue reading FF1991: Playgrounds

WFC South Africa: Skoonheid

(December 11, 2016)

What the fuck did I just watch? OK, the actors are great, as is the cinematography, but this is the creepiest film ever. I guess it’s a tale of literally literally insane lust. I loved the scene where he was sitting in the cafeteria staring at the couple, though. Most memorable line: “No faggots, no … Continue reading WFC South Africa: Skoonheid

WFC Netherlands: De vierde man

(December 10, 2016)

This is a very inventive and somewhat amateurish early from Paul Verhoven. I have a sneaking suspicion that he’d seen films from both Davids Lynch and Cronenberg at this point. Such a strange film. There are bits I like enormously, but the pacing just seems… off. And most of the actors are pretty dire. I … Continue reading WFC Netherlands: De vierde man

WFC The Democratic Republic of the Congo: Viva Riva!

(December 10, 2016)

Love the cinematography and the colours, the actors are pretty good, and it’s an intriguing story line. But there’s something awkward about the way it’s been edited. Still, a really pleasant surprise. But, man, those Angolan villains were eeevil. And I didn’t understand why the commander didn’t just shoot them when she met them. I … Continue reading WFC The Democratic Republic of the Congo: Viva Riva!

FF1998: Evil Eye

(December 10, 2016)

Evil Eye #1-12 by Richard Sala. Sala is one of the more distinctive stylists in American comics. Like Charles Burns, he appeared on the scene in the early 80s, fully formed, with an art style like nobody else, and with a narrow range of subjects for his comics. Burns was mostly about growing up and … Continue reading FF1998: Evil Eye

WFC Bhutan: Phörpa

(December 9, 2016)

This is a very original film. The actors (presumably non-professional) are a bit stiff and awkward, but it’s weirdly appropriate. The plot sounds very high concept (it’s about football mad Tibetan monks (in India)), but it’s also about Tibet and China and exile and recurring jokes. It’s both fun and really interesting. The Cup. Khyentse … Continue reading WFC Bhutan: Phörpa

FF2004: Trucker Fags in Denial

(December 9, 2016)

Trucker Fags in Denial by Jim Blanchard and Jim Goad. This is a collection of a monthly single page comic that was originally serialised in Exotic magazine. Jim Blanchard is perhaps still most famous as the inker for Peter Bagge’s Hate in the 90s, but he’s also released a number of solo collections. This comic … Continue reading FF2004: Trucker Fags in Denial

FF1994: Pressed/Weasel

(December 8, 2016)

Pressed Tongue #1-3, Weasel #1-7 by Dave Cooper. In my mind, Dave Cooper was part of a movement towards “body horror” in 90s comics, as exemplified by Renée French, Al Columbia and (somewhat earlier) Jim Woodring. All these artists are technically proficient and create dark, “squishy” pages that straddle the line, uneasily, between horror and … Continue reading FF1994: Pressed/Weasel

FF1982: Hugo

(December 7, 2016)

Hugo #1, Hugo (second series) #1-3 by Milton Knight, jr. Hugo was, I think, Fantagraphics third comic book (after, ahem, Flames of Gyro and Love and Rockets). It’s been a while since I’ve read these comics. I can’t imagine I’ve looked at them since they were published, so that’s 30 years? Let’s re-read. The first … Continue reading FF1982: Hugo

FF1986: Anything Goes!

(December 6, 2016)

Anything Goes! edited by Gary Groth. I just realised that the end was in sight for this blog series, so my enthusiasm returned. There may be some slight pauses before we get to the end, as I’m waiting for some issues to arrive to complete some runs… Anyway! Anything Goes! is, perhaps, not formally a … Continue reading FF1986: Anything Goes!

FF1989: The Natural Inquirer

(December 5, 2016)

The Natural Inquirer by R. L. Crabb. Crabb is mainly known for his underground series Tales of the Jackalope. This book has a few pages of jackalope lore, but most of the pages concern other species like: The is not a comic book per se, but is just a series of these drawings and descriptions. … Continue reading FF1989: The Natural Inquirer

FF2006: Uptight

(December 4, 2016)

Uptight #1-5 by Jordan Crane. This is one the very last floppies Fantagraphics has published, and it doesn’t look much like Fantagraphics comic book comics usually look. There’s no verbose indicia (“any similarities to etc”), no UPC code, it’s cheap, the cover stock is the same as the interior stock, and the first three issues … Continue reading FF2006: Uptight

FF2003: The Pogostick

(December 3, 2016)

The Pogostick #1-2 by Al Columbia and Ethan Persoff. We’ve seen both Al Columbia and Ethan Persoff before in this article series, and here they turn up with a collaboration. This book has an unusual format, being smaller than standard-size comics and printed “sideways”. Sort of. Based on the indicia and guessing, this was probably … Continue reading FF2003: The Pogostick

FF2001: Angry Youth Comix

(December 2, 2016)

Angry Youth Comix #1-14 by Johnny Ryan. I guess Ryan works in the gross-out humour comics tradition exemplified by people like Sam Henderson, but he’s most similar to Ivan Brunetti in his most deranged moods. Or perhaps there’s a Mike Diana influence going on here, although I think Ryan probably doesn’t really mean it the … Continue reading FF2001: Angry Youth Comix

FF1994: Omaha the Cat Dancer

(December 1, 2016)

Omaha the Cat Dancer #1-20, vol 2 #1-4 by Reed Waller and Kate Worley. Reed Waller started Omaha in the mid-70s, and the earliest instalments were published in underground anthologies like Snarf and Bizarre Sex by Kitchen Sink. It’s an anthropomorphic tale of sex, politics and corruption that focuses on Chuck Katt (real name Tabey … Continue reading FF1994: Omaha the Cat Dancer

“Muting” Pictures With Pure CSS

(November 30, 2016)

I’ve been somewhat wary about posting some of the images from some of the more extreme Fantagraphics comics I’ve written about (I’m thinking of you, Grit Bath).  Not everybody appreciates being flashed images of bitten-off ears or penises while scrolling down a blog. On the other hand, I want to represent these comics honestly, so … Continue reading “Muting” Pictures With Pure CSS

FF1993: Grit Bath

(November 30, 2016)

Grit Bath #1-3 by Renée French. Renée French always felt to me like a part of a mini-movement within alternative comics that upped the body horror stakes beyond what was, perhaps, reasonable. I’m thinking of artists like Al Colombia and Dave Cooper, that all mix childish whimsy with horrible, horrible squishy horror. They’re all sort … Continue reading FF1993: Grit Bath

FF2006: Swamp Preacher

(November 29, 2016)

Swamp Preacher #1 by David Sandlin. Sandlin is an artist who’s only done a handful of comics, I think. He’s had a few pieces in Blab, I seem to recall. This magazine sized book is strikingly printed in burgundy and green (and no black ink), giving the pages a muddy, swampy look very apposite for … Continue reading FF2006: Swamp Preacher

FF1990: Amazons

(November 28, 2016)

Amazons by Frank Stack. Frank Stack is a first-generation underground artist: His first underground comic was published in 1962 (The Adventures of Jesus), but he hasn’t published that many books. Amazons is one of his rare 80s/90s solo floppies, and I don’t know whether it’s an original work, or whether it’s a collection of pieces … Continue reading FF1990: Amazons

FF1993: Sleepy/Whotnot

(November 27, 2016)

Whotnot #1-4, Sleepy: The Early Daze by Jeremy Eaton. Eaton is probably most well-known for his alternative weekly strip “A Sleepyhead Tale” from the late 80s/early 90s. Fantagraphics released a handful of collections of that series, but only one of them are in floppy format, so I get to skip the rest for this blog … Continue reading FF1993: Sleepy/Whotnot

Time To Defrost The Fridge?

(November 27, 2016)

WFC Canada: Whole New Thing

(November 26, 2016)

And this film sort of marks the end of my randomnly-aquired films for this project (at the 25% mark, even). Up until (and including this one) I’ve just been visiting video stores, looking at films and going “huh! this is from a country that lacks coverage!” and then buying it without any consideration for the … Continue reading WFC Canada: Whole New Thing

WFC Armenia: Նռան գույնը

(November 26, 2016)

This is officially the 224th best film ever. The philosophical question is, of course, “it this film from Armenia”? It was created during the Soviet era, so it’s a bit iffy, I guess, but, you know: Anyway, this is a (sorta) non-narrative film, and consists of static tableaux. This may sound kinda portentous and pretentious, … Continue reading WFC Armenia: Նռան գույնը

FF1986: Usagi Yojimbo

(November 26, 2016)

Usagi Yojimbo Summer Special #1, Usagi Yojimbo #1-38, Usagi Yojimbo Color Special #1-4 by Stan Sakai. There aren’t many Fantagraphics series that has had more issues than Usagi Yojimbo (uhm, Love & Rockets and Naughty Bits), but they were all published over a long time period. Usagi Yojimbo is the only character focused Fantagraphics publication … Continue reading FF1986: Usagi Yojimbo

WFC Bangladesh: তিতাস একটি নদীর নাম

(November 25, 2016)

What a strange film. It this had been directed by somebody like Robert Bresson, I would have assumed that the stilted dialogue, oblique plot and very stylized acting was a conscious choice, but here I’m not so sure. And then suddenly it turns into a farce for half an hour. And then there’s a boat … Continue reading WFC Bangladesh: তিতাস একটি নদীর নাম

WFC Romania: Marţi, după Crăciun

(November 25, 2016)

The actors are fantastic, and it’s a very stylish film, and there are some very powerful scenes in here. Tuesday, After Christmas. Radu Muntean. 2010. Romania. Temptation 2 parts Limoncello 1 part lemon vodka 1 part lime juice brown sugar to taste Shake with ice, and pour into a glass rimmed with brown sugar. This … Continue reading WFC Romania: Marţi, după Crăciun

FF1995: Mystic/Loathing

(November 25, 2016)

Self-Loathing Comics #1-2 by Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Robert Crumb. Mystic Funnies #1-3 by Robert Crumb. Fantagraphics has published a large number of Crumbian books, most notably the Complete Crumb Collection in the 80s, and the Love That Bunch collection in 1990. But they haven’t really published a lot of their original comics, just various collections. … Continue reading FF1995: Mystic/Loathing

FF1993: An Accidental Death

(November 24, 2016)

An Accidental Death by Eric Shanower and Ed Brubaker. On the face of it, this seems like a rather unlikely thing for Fantagraphics to have published: A standalone story about a psycho teenager murdering a girl on Guantanamo, and then his non-psycho friend helping him, created by two people well ensconced within mainstream US comics. … Continue reading FF1993: An Accidental Death

FF2003: Storylines: An Anthology of Emerging Cartoonists

(November 23, 2016)

Storylines: An Anthology of Emerging Cartoonists #1 edited by James Sturm. As anthologies go, this is unassuming physically: Standard size comic book, thin paper, a slightly vague cover. Most of the pieces are obviously not drawn with a comic book format in mind: Most leave a wide border at the top and the bottom, which … Continue reading FF2003: Storylines: An Anthology of Emerging Cartoonists

FF2003: Ape

(November 22, 2016)

Ape by Theodoros Nikos Jouflas. Jouflas appeared in various anthologies (like Pictopia) throughout the 90s, and published two books, both of which I vaguely remember as being collections of shorter pieces (Scary and Filthy). But I may be misremembering; it’s a long time since I’ve read those. This 32 page magazine (with stiff covers) is … Continue reading FF2003: Ape

FF1990: 3 Fox Comics

(November 21, 2016)

Tattoo Man Special #1 by Dave Hodson and Greg Gates. Walking Wounded #1, True Confusions #1 by Dave Hodson. These comics were part of the attempt by the Australian Fox Comics to get wider distribution by co-publishing with Fantagraphics. The Fox Comics anthology was being published somewhat concurrently with these comics. Tattoo Man reprints the … Continue reading FF1990: 3 Fox Comics

FF1999: Steven

(November 20, 2016)

Steven Presents Dumpy, Steven Comix #2: Steven at Sea by Doug Allen. Steven is a long-running weekly strip that’s mostly featured in alternative magazines and newspapers. While these two comics have titles that seem to hint at more focussed tales, they turn out to just reprint a bunch of Steven strips. Eight issues had previously … Continue reading FF1999: Steven

FF1998: Pop Life

(November 19, 2016)

Pop Life #1-5 by Ho Che Anderson and Wilfred Santiago. I’m running out of Fantagraphics pamphlets to write articles about here. (Was that a sigh of relief I heard?) But that’s not because I’ve done them all. No, it’s just that I’m stalled since I’m waiting for a bunch of comics to arrive in the … Continue reading FF1998: Pop Life

WFC Lithuania: Nesamasis laikas

(November 18, 2016)

This is one of those “big reveal” films, and the reveal is surprising. However, it felt like it was going to reveal something completely different through most of the middle bit, and that was annoying. It was like the filmmaker was taunting us with “yeah, you’re clever, you’ve already figured out that “. Which isn’t … Continue reading WFC Lithuania: Nesamasis laikas

FF1998: Top Notch Comics

(November 18, 2016)

Top Notch Comics #1 by Ethan Persoff. I remember this comic being somehow controversial, but I can’t quite remember why. There are some very Chris Ware-esque things about it. It has an unusual size, it’s printed in duo-tone, and it uses blurred backgrounds. There are things to cut out and assemble. There’s a fake ad. … Continue reading FF1998: Top Notch Comics

FF2004: Noire Orange

(November 17, 2016)

Blood Orange #1-4, Bête Noire: The International Comic Art Quarterly #1 edited by Chris Polkki. Since Bête Noire is termed an “international” quarterly, and Blood Orange isn’t, and they have the same format and editor, I assumed that Blood Orange would be an all-American feast. But, nope, the Orange has got plenty of foreigners, too. … Continue reading FF2004: Noire Orange

FF1993: Meat Cake

(November 16, 2016)

Meat Cake #0-17 by Dame Darcy. I’m going to try to write this blog article without using the word “quirky”. Oops! I remember getting these comics about once a year throughout the 90s, and every time I was all “yay!”. It’s an utterly original comic book, filled with strange adventures and loopy, obsessive artwork. There … Continue reading FF1993: Meat Cake

FF2005: Tales Designed to Thrizzle

(November 15, 2016)

Tales Designed to Thrizzle #1-8 by Michael Kupperman. I’m a bit exhausted. Laughing so hard your eyes are streaming for two or three hours takes a toll. Kupperman used to work under the pen name “P. Revess”, and published pieces in various anthologies throughout the 90s, I think. His method hasn’t really changed much: He … Continue reading FF2005: Tales Designed to Thrizzle

FF1995: Minimum Wage

(November 14, 2016)

Minimum Wage #1-10, Monkey Jank by Bob Fingerman. Fantagraphics had published an introductory Minimal Wage graphic novel before starting this series, which is perhaps an unusual publishing strategy. Fingerman had also published a number of porn comics through Eros before this series. Minimum Wage is about a guy who’s a comic book artist, living in … Continue reading FF1995: Minimum Wage

FF1993: The ACME Novelty Library

(November 13, 2016)

The ACME Novelty Library #1-15 by Chris Ware. Yikes. Or… finally? Chris Ware? If you asked me drunkenly at a bar sometime “Say, Lars, who’s your favourite comic book artist?”, I’d sputter and be all “er, uhm”, but if you limited it to “favourite American comic book artist that started in the 90s and is … Continue reading FF1993: The ACME Novelty Library

FF2002: Belly Button Comix

(November 12, 2016)

Belly Button Comix #1-2 by Sophie Crumb. It’s fun to see how Crumb’s artwork evolves over these two issues, created while she was between 19 and 22, I think. Crumb’s trying out a lot of styles, like this very late-60s underground bigfoot style. And then a very worked-at realistic illustration. And then washes. Anyway, the … Continue reading FF2002: Belly Button Comix

FF2003: Funny Friends

(November 11, 2016)

Mabel Normand and Her Funny Friends, Fatty Arbuckle and His Funny Friends edited by Marilyn Slater. These two magazine sized comics collects pieces of a British publication from 1921, now in the public domain. Each issue includes a brief biography of the movie star in question. But the meat of each issue is the reprinting … Continue reading FF2003: Funny Friends

FF2004: Holy Moly

(November 10, 2016)

Holy Moly by Leah Hayes. Fantagraphics doesn’t work a lot with the materiality of their books: The vast majority of them are unremarkable as physical objects. This is quite different from some of their smaller peers, where they often have unique sizes, papers or printing methods. This is one of those rare unique floppies from … Continue reading FF2004: Holy Moly

FF2005: Grenuord

(November 9, 2016)

Grenuord #1-3 by Francesca Ghermandi. I am not a comics publishing genius, but serialising a translation of an Italian graphic novel as a series of $5-6 comic books, in 2005, published with a four-month interval between each issue, does not seem like the plan most likely to succeed. It’s told in a decompressed style: Big … Continue reading FF2005: Grenuord

Well, That’s Depressing

(November 9, 2016)

So here’s  a picture of a cat drinking milk.

My New Concert Blog

(November 9, 2016)

 

FF1996: Primitive Cretin

(November 8, 2016)

Primitive Cretin by Henriette Valium. This is an oversized collection of Henriette Valium’s work from the early 90s. It’s slightly wider than a magazine, and quite a bit taller. Kim Thompson hadpublished Valium earlier in Zero Zero, but the smaller size of that anthology meant that most of Valium’s drawings were somewhat difficult to make … Continue reading FF1996: Primitive Cretin

FF1994: Way Out Strips

(November 7, 2016)

Way Out Strips volume 3 #1-4 by Carol Swain. I’ve been a massive fan of Carol Swain ever since I happened onto one of her short, oblique, beautifully drawn stories in an issue of Chris Reynold’s Mauretania magazine. After that, she self-published four issues of the first Way Out Strips series, but I’ve never been … Continue reading FF1994: Way Out Strips

FF1990: Art/Leather/Knuckle/Zoot!

(November 6, 2016)

Art d’Ecco #1-4, Zoot! #1-6 by Andrew and Roger Langridge. Leather Underwear, Knuckles the Malevolent Nun #1-2 by Cornelius Stone and Roger Langridge. I had read the first issue of Art d’Ecco before, but that had apparently not inspired me to buy the rest of the issues at the time. How exciting! Is it going … Continue reading FF1990: Art/Leather/Knuckle/Zoot!

WFC Burkina Faso: La nuit de la vérité

(November 5, 2016)

Some scenes work really well, especially with the children and the women in the village. But a lot of the actors are, like, declaiming at the camera, and it’s a more than a bit awkward. So I kinda like it, and I admire it, and there’s good stuff in here. But. The climactic scene was … Continue reading WFC Burkina Faso: La nuit de la vérité

FF1994: Different Beat Comics

(November 5, 2016)

Different Beat Comics #1 edited by Kim Thompson. This book features a bunch of short (mostly two page) pieces that either are previously unpublished or are very obscure. It’s meant as both a way to read those obscure pieces and as a promotional tool: All artists featured had regular series going at Fantagraphics at the … Continue reading FF1994: Different Beat Comics

WFC Germany: Aber das Wort Hund bellt ja nicht

(November 4, 2016)

A very unusual “tour” film, but it really gets to the heart of the matter. Long, long takes of the musicians playing or listening to the others playing, interspersed with tales of the routine of touring. Who knew there were so many ways of making duck with red cabbage? (Oh, featured in the film are … Continue reading WFC Germany: Aber das Wort Hund bellt ja nicht

WFC Hungary: Egymásra nézve

(November 4, 2016)

It’s an interesting little film. It must have been difficult to make this in the early 80s. I love the actors. The story is… uhm… Well, you won’t be surprised by how it ends. NORMALITY RESTORED in the usual way in these films. Another Way. Károly Makk. 1982. Hungary. 1 part white wine 1 part … Continue reading WFC Hungary: Egymásra nézve

FF1991: I Before E

(November 4, 2016)

I Before E #1-2 by Sam Kieth. These two issues reprint a lot of Sam Kieth’s early work; Kieth had become a hot artist over the past few years. I like how “Fantagraphics” isn’t mentioned at all on the covers. Perhaps keeping that fact a secret would entice Sandman fans to buy them? The most … Continue reading FF1991: I Before E

FF1991: Guttersnipe D

(November 3, 2016)

Avenue D, Guttersnipe Comics #1-2 by Glenn Head. I guess you could call Glenn Head a third generation underground comix artist. His comics seem to belong to that lineage even if he started working in the 80s. Avenue D collects various bits and pieces into a 48 page magazine sized single author anthology. About half … Continue reading FF1991: Guttersnipe D

FF1989: Stinz

(November 2, 2016)

Stinz #1-4 by Donna Barr. Stinz had been running in the Dreamery anthology by Eclipse Comics for a while, but the Fantagraphics title is his first solo comic. Stinz is a half-horse living in an alternate reality Austria in the early 1900s. Rather high concept, eh? But it’s fun. Barr has a lively drawing style … Continue reading FF1989: Stinz

FF1992: Not Love & Rockets

(November 1, 2016)

Ten Years of Love and Rockets, Tales from Shock City #1, Blubber #1-3 by Beto Hernandez with Mario Hernandez and Jaime Hernandez. These are comics that I should have covered in the Love and Rockets blog post, perhaps. At least the first one. Probably not the last one. It’s a bit of a mish-mash, but … Continue reading FF1992: Not Love & Rockets

FF1992: Crap

(October 31, 2016)

Bummer #1, Completely Bad Boys, Crap #1-7, Damnation! #1 by J. R. Williams. I covered Bad Comics, oh, months ago (how much further to go!!!), and should probably have done these ones at the same time, but I forgot. So you get two J. R. Williams posts. I have the Cat-Head Comics edition of Bummer … Continue reading FF1992: Crap

FF1992: Suburban Voodoo Comics

(October 30, 2016)

Suburban Voodoo Comics by Matthew Guest. This is a 48 page one-shot (edited by Robert Boyd) with three stories that all seem like they might be autobiographical. They’re tales of normal teenage life… … and Christian damage. The artwork is rather appealing, but I can’t help wonder whether something has gone wrong in the printing … Continue reading FF1992: Suburban Voodoo Comics

FF1989: Waldo

(October 29, 2016)

Shadowland #1-2, Stuff of Dreams #1-3 by Kim Deitch. The Mishkin File, The Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Waldo World #1-3 by Kim and Simon Deitch. Kim Deitch (sometimes in collaboration with his brother Simon) has spun this long interconnected tale for decades, spread out over a number of titles and collections. One part of this … Continue reading FF1989: Waldo

Emacs Non-Flickering Patch

(October 29, 2016)

Earlier today, Daniel Colascione merged his double-buffering Emacs display patch, and I was interested in seeing whether it reduced flickering when viewing animated GIFs on my problematic main machine. And it sure does: First you see an Emacs from five hours ago displaying a GIF, and it is flicker-o-rama.  Then I switch to a brand … Continue reading Emacs Non-Flickering Patch

FF1992: Sap Tunes

(October 28, 2016)

Sap Tunes #1-2 by Granger Davis and Steve Kongsle. I’m finding out now that Fantagraphics sure released a lot of, er, very short series by artists I’ve never heard of. Here’s another one. Davis does a pair of pieces about this guy… … who works in retail, is slightly disgruntled with stupid customers (see above), … Continue reading FF1992: Sap Tunes

WFC Bulgaria: Урок

(October 28, 2016)

There are things about this film I like enormously. It’s a taut, tense film about nightmarish desperation. But it seems like there are always options out of the problems that seem to be avoided just for the sake of plot. So my main feeling here is of “but why doesn’t she…?” just about all the … Continue reading WFC Bulgaria: Урок

FF1992: WildB.R.A.T.S: Bad Redundant Art Teams

(October 28, 2016)

WildB.R.A.T.S: Bad Redundant Art Teams #1 by Dean Williams and Aaron McClellan. Dean Williams… where have I seen that name before? Oh, we wrote the execrable Butt Biscuit series from Fantagraphics. *gulp* Well, Fantagraphics has published a few parody comics over the years, but they usually make fun of things that are considered interesting by … Continue reading FF1992: WildB.R.A.T.S: Bad Redundant Art Teams

FF1992: S.O.S.

(October 27, 2016)

S.O.S. by Mark Kalesniko. This is brief, mostly wordless story about surviving on your own in the big, bad world. So allegory. But while somewhat hokey, it’s attractively drawn and somewhat touching. Here we see our hero take a bite out of the nasty shark. See? Allegory! I think this may be the first Kalesniko … Continue reading FF1992: S.O.S.

Excerpt from What Paper? The Printing Aficionado Magazine, Issue 15, Volume XXIV, 2015

(October 27, 2016)

Review of the printing of the Dover edition of The Puma Blues (by Stephen Murphy and Michael Zulli) printed by RR Donnelley in China. Paper stock unknown. When Dover announced a collected edition of the 80s series The Puma Blues, we here at What Paper? anxiously examined the press release for phrases like “shot from … Continue reading Excerpt from What Paper? The Printing Aficionado Magazine, Issue 15, Volume XXIV, 2015

FF1989: Kafka: The Execution

(October 26, 2016)

Kafka: The Execution by Leopoldo Durañona. Fantagraphics were publishing fellow South Americans Muñoz & Sampaya in a similar format to this (magazine size with cardboard covers) at the time (as well as anthologising Francisco Solano Lopez). I’m not familiar with Durañona’s work, but this is kinda interesting. The artwork is a bit reminiscent of Moebius. … Continue reading FF1989: Kafka: The Execution

My New Concert Blog

(October 26, 2016)

My camera’s microphone freaked out completely on the Agnes Hvizdalek piece, so I haven’t included that one.  But it seems to have survived on this:

FF1989: The Eye of Mongombo

(October 25, 2016)

The Eye of Mongombo #1-7 by Doug Gray. Before this series, Doug Gray had a couple of appearances in Critters, I think. The Eye of Mongombo is a pretty funny comic book about that archaeologist up there (transformed into a duck) who looks for a treasure in South America. Hijinx ensue. A lot. I find … Continue reading FF1989: The Eye of Mongombo

On a Roll

(October 24, 2016)

I bought these comics by CF a few months back, but they, er, rolled behind a stack of comics, so I forgot about them until tonight. They’re printed on thermal receipt paper, so they’re monochromatic, but CF has customized them a bit with various stamps at the start and end of each roll. Winding them … Continue reading On a Roll

FF1999: Neatish Stuff

(October 24, 2016)

The Bradleys #1-6, Junior #1-5 by Peter Bagge. Martini Baton by Dave Carrino and Peter Bagge. These are all reprints, and since I’ve read the books these were sourced from (Neat Stuff and Weirdo), I considered skipping them. But then my CDO fired (it’s like OCD, but with the letters in the proper order), and … Continue reading FF1999: Neatish Stuff

FF1988: Stickboy

(October 23, 2016)

Stickboy #1-3 by Dennis Worden. Stickboy had been published by a different publisher before Fantagraphics stepped in, and it would continue to be published by various publishers after Fantagraphics bowed out. I haven’t read any of those incarnations, though. The first Fantagraphics issue starts off like a normal pre-slacker comic book, what with Stickboy looking … Continue reading FF1988: Stickboy

The Comics Journal Search Engine

(October 22, 2016)

In connection with my grand Fantagraphics re-reading project, I took out a subscription to the Comics Journal archives so that I could look up older reviews for these old comics. That turned out to be easier said than done, because the TCJ archive consists of one scanned JPEG per Comics Journal page, and there’s no … Continue reading The Comics Journal Search Engine

FF1997: La Artbabe

(October 22, 2016)

Artbabe volume 2 #1-4, La Perdida #1-5 by Jessica Abel. Artbabe started out as a self-published mini-comic, and then Abel got a Xeric grant and published the final issue of Volume 1 as a standard-size US comic book (with real distribution). I haven’t got the first four issues (although I may have the collection here … Continue reading FF1997: La Artbabe

WFC Albania: Falja e Gjakut

(October 22, 2016)

This is a fascinating film. It’s perhaps the most exotic story I’ve seen so far in this film series, and it’s from a European country. It’s a simple little film about a fucked up situation, but it’s pitch perfect emotionally. The sitch is so exotically fucked up that I’m almost tempted to give a plot … Continue reading WFC Albania: Falja e Gjakut

FF1991: Kid Anarchy

(October 21, 2016)

Kid Anarchy #1-3 by George Cole and Mike McCarthy. Picking up a comic book with from a writer/artist pair always makes me sceptical. Statistically speaking, single author comics are better. But perhaps this one is the one that will convince me once and for all that that’s a stupid prejudice! Yes! Oh, deer. Gander at … Continue reading FF1991: Kid Anarchy

FF1983: Don Rosa’s Comics and Stories

(October 20, 2016)

Don Rosa’s Comics and Stories #1-2 by Don Rosa. This may have been something like the third comic series that Fantagraphics published (after Love & Rockets and Hugo). It was apparently planned as an ongoing series, but was axed after two issues. This magazine sized comic book reprints The Pertwillaby Papers, which had previously been … Continue reading FF1983: Don Rosa’s Comics and Stories

FF1995: Zero Zero

(October 19, 2016)

Zero Zero #1-27 edited by Kim Thompson. There have been a few anthologies that have defined generations. These things seem to happen when there’s a happy confluence between an editor (or editors) and a new, burgeoning scene: There are artists that people sum up as “Raw artists”, for instance, because Françoise Mouly and Art Spiegelman … Continue reading FF1995: Zero Zero

FF2014: DKW: Ditko Kirby Wood

(October 18, 2016)

DKW: Ditko Kirby Wood by Sergio Ponchione. This comic book (colour, slick pages) is a translation of material previously published in Italy, which is a pretty unusual thing to do in 2014 (since alternative pamphlets don’t seem to sell much). It’s dedicated to the recently deceased Fantagraphics co-publisher Kim Thompson. Anyway, there’s a framing story … Continue reading FF2014: DKW: Ditko Kirby Wood

FF2006: Monster Parade

(October 18, 2016)

Monster Parade #1 by Ben Catmull. Apparently meant to be a series, only one issue was published. It’s a quirkily amusing book. Here we have a winter storm… And here we learn how certain kinds of perfume are made, and it does explain a lot. The stories are rather oblique. They set a mood, and … Continue reading FF2006: Monster Parade

FF2006: Runaway Comics

(October 17, 2016)

Runaway Comics #1-3 by Mark Martin. Mark Martin is not a very prolific artist and is probably most famous for his Gnatrat series (or his duo comic book with Jim Woodring, Tantalizing Stories). So a new solo series from him was exciting. Martin is an excellent cartoonist. The stories in Runaway Comics mostly feature his … Continue reading FF2006: Runaway Comics

FF2013: 3 New Comics

(October 16, 2016)

3 New Stories, Cosplayers #1-2 by Dash Shaw. The major alternative publishers have all but stopped publishing comic book comics, so it was quite a surprise when Fantagraphics dropped 3 New Stories on an unsuspecting public in 2013. According to the comics database and my notes here, Fantagraphics had published no new pamphlet series since … Continue reading FF2013: 3 New Comics

FF1999: Death & Candy

(October 15, 2016)

Death & Candy #1-4 by Max Andersson. Max Andersson is a Swedish cartoonist who make nightmarish stream of consciousness comics. Andersson’s style takes me back to early 80s New York newave comics: Macabre and funny stuff in a blender. Here’s Car Boy, one of Andersson’s more recognisable characters. The print quality of the first issue … Continue reading FF1999: Death & Candy

WFC Viet Nam: Xích Lô

(October 15, 2016)

It’s a very moist film. Sure, it’s aestheticizing poverty and stuff. Inscrutable film, great actors and cinematography. Cyclo. Tran Anh Hung. 1995. Viet Nam. Ginger Kaffir Limeade limes sugar 1 part ginger syrup 1 part cointreau 3 parts vodka Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. This post is part of the World … Continue reading WFC Viet Nam: Xích Lô

FF1999: Spicecapades

(October 14, 2016)

Spicecapades edited by Queen Itchie. By 1999, I would have thought that Spice Mania had subsided? So it was probably too late publish this to cash in, but perhaps that wasn’t the point, anyway… So what’s up here? If not a cash grab, is it an honest appreciation or ironic appropriation? “No thanks to all … Continue reading FF1999: Spicecapades

FF1997: Poot

(October 13, 2016)

Poot #1-4 by Walt Holcombe. The last three issues of this series are in a format that’s a bit smaller than standard-size US comics, while this first one is very small indeed. Around this time, there seemed to be a lot of comics in vaguely this style: Slick, cartoony, anthropomorphic and wistful tales of love … Continue reading FF1997: Poot

FF1996: Rollercoaster

(October 12, 2016)

Rollercoaster #1-2 by Rich Tomasso. Tomasso had previously published the Clover Honey graphic novel at Fantagraphics (and the Cannibal Romance series at Eros), but Rollercoaster seems like an attempt at creating one of those single author anthologies that Fantagraphics published so many of. The major story in the first issue is about a girl who … Continue reading FF1996: Rollercoaster

FF2004: Worn Tuff Elbow

(October 12, 2016)

Worn Tuff Elbow #1 by Marc Bell. This magazine sized book was apparently planned as a series, but only one issue was published. Since the cover says “Theatre Absurd-O”, I thought that this was going to be weirder than it is. I’ve gotta get me some 250% moisturisation, too. Anyway, most of the issue is … Continue reading FF2004: Worn Tuff Elbow

Rocktober Day 6: The Cure

(October 12, 2016)

Concerts in Oslo today.

FF1994: Raisin Doofus

(October 11, 2016)

Doofus #1-2, Raisin Pie #1-5  by Rick Altergott and Ariel Bordeaux. Doofus had been running in various anthologies, but must prominently as a backup feature in Hate. So spinning it off into its own title probably seemed quite natural. I’ve never enjoyed reading Doofus, but haven’t really examined why. It’s obvious why people would find … Continue reading FF1994: Raisin Doofus

Rocktober Day 5: Oranssi Pazuzu

(October 10, 2016)

Concerts in Oslo today. That was the most disappointing din-din at Arakataka ever. Ooo! Psyche-a-delic! Stamped, but faintly.

FF1997: Steve Ditko’s Strange Avenging Tales

(October 10, 2016)

Steve Ditko’s Strange Avenging Tales #1 by Steve Ditko. After leaving Marvel in the early 70s, Ditko has been publishing a stream of Ayn Rand-inspired comics at any publisher that would let him do whatever he wanted without any interference. Strange Avenging Tales was apparently an attempt at doing one of these comics at Fantagraphics, … Continue reading FF1997: Steve Ditko’s Strange Avenging Tales

FF1996: Empty Skull Comics

(October 10, 2016)

Empty Skull Comics by Gerald Jablonski. Mm, yes… Jim Woodring provides an introduction and offers the idea that Jablonski is possibly insane. The first half of this collection doesn’t seem particularly crazy. The humour is off-kilter, but the silliness is within normal parameters, I would say. This sort of humour is just my thing. You … Continue reading FF1996: Empty Skull Comics

Rocktober Day 4: Vollen Odd Size United

(October 9, 2016)

Reindeer pizza at Tranen. That may be the best white pizza I’ve had. Concerts in Oslo today.

FF1994: Nurture the Devil

(October 9, 2016)

Nurture the Devil #1-3 by Jeff Johnson. There seemed to be a micro-movement towards body horror going on at Fantagraphics in the mid-90s. Renée French, Dave Cooper and Jeff Johnson all did violent, visceral, sexually charged comics around this time, with squishy, ink-soaked artwork. Nice introduction, but I really wanted to highlight a typical Fantagraphics … Continue reading FF1994: Nurture the Devil

Rocktober Day 3: Sofa Label Night

(October 8, 2016)

Food at Xích Lô. The rack of lamb was simply amahzing. You know that fatty thing over those round bit of meat? They had done something to it so that it tasted like a cross between bone marrow and foie de gras, but really charred, and with bright spices. It was like nothing I’ve tasted … Continue reading Rocktober Day 3: Sofa Label Night

FF1992: (You and Your) Big Mouth

(October 8, 2016)

(You and Your) Big Mouth #1-7 by Pat Moriarity and various. There are several series that feature a single writer and a wide cast of artists (Real Stuff, Duplex Planet Illustrated, American Splendor), but this is one of the very few series that has one single artist, and a wide roster of writers. A comics … Continue reading FF1992: (You and Your) Big Mouth

FF1995: Prick Comix

(October 8, 2016)

Prick Comix by Sean Brennan and Tom Giansante. This comic reminds me a bit of those random underground comix that were published in the early 70s. Just goofing around (while high, most likely) without much ambition to do much beyond that. That’s the Dalai Lama fighting against some kidnappers by playing a Kenny G tune. … Continue reading FF1995: Prick Comix

Rocktober Day 2: Death in June

(October 7, 2016)

Interesting mixture of audience members…  I mean, since Death in June are what some people consider to be nazis.  Some were punching the air during the “the west is at war” moments while other were looking frantically around with the “WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS?!?” expression on their faces. Concerts in Oslo today.

FF1991: Cultural Jet Lag

(October 7, 2016)

Cultural Jet Lag #1 by Tom Robert and Jim Siergey. Cultural Jet Lag was apparently a weekly strip, and this might be a collection of some of those strips. However, the format varies wildly, and some of the longer stories don’t really seem like weekly strips, so perhaps it’s a mixture of reprints and new … Continue reading FF1991: Cultural Jet Lag

Bordering on Insanity

(October 7, 2016)

I use Borderlinx to bounce packages via when I buy stuff from ebay, since so many American ebay sellers don’t want to ship cheap items abroad. And it gives me greater control on when packages arrive, and it’s cheaper. So everything went well for months, and then two packages were stopped because they apparently contained … Continue reading Bordering on Insanity

FF1993: Griffith Observatory

(October 7, 2016)

Griffith Observatory by Bill Griffith. Bill Griffith’s most famous creation is Zippy the Pinhead, of course, which is still running today. These days, I mostly read them via Arnold Zwicky’s blog, where he explains all the references. (They can be pretty obscure.) I’ve always enjoyed Zippy, but reading it in collections (which has been my … Continue reading FF1993: Griffith Observatory

Rocktober Day 1: Pain Jerk

(October 6, 2016)

      Concerts today.

FF1994: Life Under Sanctions

(October 6, 2016)

Life Under Sanctions, Psychonaut #1-2 by Aleksandar Zograf. These comics were written during (and after) the ex-Yugoslavian wars in the early to mid nineties, and are like despatches that try to explain what’s going on. Jim Woodring provides the introduction, which you might think is an odd choice for a book about war. But Zograf … Continue reading FF1994: Life Under Sanctions

FF1993: Verbatim

(October 6, 2016)

Verbatim #1-2 by Carl Belfast. Autobio comics is one of the major genres in art comics now, and it’s difficult to recall just how controversial they were in some circles in the early 90s. This is yet another parody of the genre, and it’s not completely successful, I think. Gaze into his navel… Belfast’s art … Continue reading FF1993: Verbatim

FF1994: Insomnia

(October 5, 2016)

Insomnia by Andrew Moran. This is a rather odd tale (an insomniac drives to Ohio to attend a sleep clinic) drawn in a rather original fashion, rather. Hm… slightly early 80s-ish New York scratchy style? Yeah, New Jersey. As you know, here at the Paper Quality Blog, what we’re most concerned about is the paper … Continue reading FF1994: Insomnia

FF1990: Laundryland

(October 5, 2016)

Laundryland by Forg & Jeans. A rather mysterious comic book. There’s no introduction, no editorial text: Just the comics themselves. Is this a translated comic? Where are Forg & Jeans from? What’s going on? It’s about a woman who runs a laundry, and her friends. The first issue is very laid back. What happens is … Continue reading FF1990: Laundryland

Useful Consumer Review

(October 4, 2016)

WIFI doesn’t work, but some wireless solutions work less than others.  After years of searching, I’ve been using an ASUS AC87 wireless access point (what other people for inexplicable reasons call “a router”, even if you’re just running it as a bridge), and it’s almost worked, most of the time. That is, even with a … Continue reading Useful Consumer Review

FF1993: Duplex Planet Illustrated

(October 4, 2016)

Duplex Planet Illustrated #1-15, A Vast Knowledge of General Subjects by David Greenberger and various. This is one of those early-90s Fantagraphics comics that I don’t recall all that well, other than I liked it fine at the time. I wasn’t really very enthusiastic about re-reading it, so I wondered whether I had suppressed some … Continue reading FF1993: Duplex Planet Illustrated

FF1993: Black Dogs

(October 3, 2016)

Black Dogs by Ho Che Anderson. This book is a short (14-page) introduction to the Martin Luther King, jr. series of graphic novels Ho Che Anderson would publish later. It’s set in the present day, and Anderson kinda explains why it exists: So it’s set in the present, and it discusses whether it’s appropriate to … Continue reading FF1993: Black Dogs

FF1991: Jizz

(October 3, 2016)

Jizz #1-10 by Scott Russo. There was an double entendre epidemic going around at the time: Colin Upton’s Big Thing, Roberta Gregory’s Naughty Bits… and Scott Russo’s Jizz, which is, perhaps, only half as entendrey.  A single entendre. I didn’t remember much of this series, only that it was outrageous and somewhat controversial, but I … Continue reading FF1991: Jizz

FF1983: Journey

(October 2, 2016)

Journey #1-27, Journey: Wardrums #1-2 by William Messner-Loebs. The first fourteen issues of Journey were published by Aardvark-Vanaheim. While this blog series is supposed to be about Fantagraphics, I just had to re-read them all. I was about 14 when Journey started, and I remember being really enthusiastic about it. I’ve re-read the first handfuls … Continue reading FF1983: Journey

FF1992: The Librarian

(October 2, 2016)

The Librarian by Penny Moran Van Horn. Is that Steve Jobs? Penny Moran Van Horn had earlier published short pieces in Weirdo and Twisted Sisters, but this was her first (and only, I think) solo publication (except the Recipe for Disaster and Other Stories compilation published later). The story is about a slum lord librarian … Continue reading FF1992: The Librarian

FF1992: Doofer: Pathway to McEarth

(October 1, 2016)

Doofer: Pathway to McEarth by Paul Ollswang, Taft Chatham and James Carpenter. This magazine reprints a few of the Ollswang pieces from Graphic Story Monthly and Prime Cuts, the two earliest “general” Fantagraphics anthologies. In addition, there’s a framing story of sorts… … because this magazine was meant as an introduction to a graphic novel … Continue reading FF1992: Doofer: Pathway to McEarth

FF1992: Crucial Fiction

(October 1, 2016)

Crucial Fiction by Julian Lawrence and Mark Yuill. Despite the name, I thought that perhaps this was an autobio series, just based on the intensity of the start of the first issue. That certainly looks and reads like a confessional religious outsider autobiographical piece, but since it ends with the protagonist building a new Christ … Continue reading FF1992: Crucial Fiction

FF1992: Butt Biscuit

(September 30, 2016)

Butt Biscuit by Dean Williams and Ted Couldron. What a thoroughly unpleasant comic book. The plot is about a kid with Down’s who’s kidnapped by a producer of speciality porn. I guess the idea is to be as offensive as possible, and then it’ll automatically be funny? So it’s a papery version of 4chan. The … Continue reading FF1992: Butt Biscuit

FF1992: Test Dirt

(September 30, 2016)

Test Dirt #1 by Tony Fitzgerald. As we get to the 90s, my “collection” of Fantagraphics comics grows spottier. I bought all the major long running comic books at the time, but the less known stuff passed me by: I was a poor student. And had to pay attention to other things. Like getting started … Continue reading FF1992: Test Dirt

FF1987: Frazetta

(September 29, 2016)

Thun’da Tales #1 Untamed Love #1 By Frank Frazetta and various. There’s no text in these comics to explain why they exist beyond what’s on the covers: “finally presented in a quality full-color edition!” So my guess is that these are comics from the early 50s that had somehow fallen into the public domain, and … Continue reading FF1987: Frazetta

FF1982: Gil Kane’s Savage!

(September 29, 2016)

Gil Kane’s Savage! by Gil Kane and Archie Goodwin. I think this is Fantagraphics’ third comic book, after The Flames of Gyro and Love and Rockets, so it’s historically interesting. It’s a reprint of a magazine published in 1968, and RC Harvey gives some context in an opening essay: He then goes on to talk … Continue reading FF1982: Gil Kane’s Savage!

FF1990: Hate

(September 28, 2016)

Hate #1-30, Hate Jamboree, Hate Annual #1-10 by Peter Bagge. Hate is Peter Bagge’s smash success series after winding up Neat Stuff. (Which wasn’t, I guess.  A smash success.) It’s also the last of the, er, “institutional indie” comics that Fantagraphics published in the 80s/90s in this blog series, after Love and Rockets, Eightball and &hell