Friday, November 2, 2012
As you have probably guessed - I have taken yet another hiatus from blogging or have quit entirely. Spurred by the Blogger format upgrade and my lack of interest in doing anything other than drinking alone in the dark - I decided to put Southern Train to Doomsday on hold for a while - if not completely cancel it.
The other truth of the matter has been - I haven't been watching enough movies to justify a movie blog - or with the movies that I've been watching I haven't been inspired to write anything about them. To date I've watched 124 films (been tracking them via Twitter) - some of them were films I've seen and written about prior - some I've watched multiple times. Since we're still using a calendar year that gives us 365 days most of the time - two movie reviews a week would be more my speed - but that's only if I felt whatever I watched was worth writing about. Plus, it's only if I was watching movies at regular intervals - but there had been a few months this year I watched maybe one or two movies.
Last thing I really want to do is write for the sake of writing - especially about something I really love. Half-hearted reviews - or reviews that concentrate so much on giving people a synopsis as filler - isn't really something I want to get into. I want to be able to tell the many angles that I think about films.
I've actually started a new blog to play with the new Blogger formatting - it's called 'Signal Jammer!' - and it covers a broader range of my tastes and has more entries about life in general. It's not updated with great frequency for many of the reasons why I haven't updated this blog - but I'm not limiting myself. With 'Signal Jammer!' I decided I didn't want to just blog for the sake of blogging - so I'm not going to do a post of pictures of pretty women - or something like my very popular Ewan McGregor post - and no more Monday Muzak - those were just fillers.
This post isn't an advertisement though for the new blog - it's more of a - "Hey, I've got a spare moment! Why don't I write something for Southern Train for the hell of it just to prove I'm not dead?" If you wanted to check out 'Signal Jammer!' you can - if you don't - that's cool too. On a personal note I really like the look of the new format as a reader - it's very slick.
Well, this beginning of the month end of the week boredom is taking a toll on my desire to finish this entry. Why is the end of the month so insane but the beginning of the month so dull? It's time for me to find an appropriate picture to post on this entry and figure out how to make one of those 'Signal Jammer!' references a link - and close the book on this. I'm not sure how much I'll update either blog - but I don't think I'm ready to call either dead.
Have a great Friday!
Monday, March 19, 2012
Monday, March 12, 2012
Monday, March 5, 2012
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
This is an amazing hyper-sexual head trip - it's a glorious treat for Franco fans that this film was finally found and reconstructed and released with such care by Mondo Macabre. The print has been damaged by the porn distributor who purchased it and cut in hardcore sex into it - but enough of the original print survived for it to fixed back to its original form as scratchy at time as it appears - unfortunately the soundtrack seemed to have suffered more.
Even with the hardcore scenes removed - Franco's version is intense for how sexually explicit it was. His fascination with the female genitalia is in full force - not only with his usual zoom into that region - but the lingering of the shot - and the fact that the actors actually engage each other in that region. It indeed takes you out of the movie a bit - but it also is part of the head trip that was designed as part of the story. It's purposely hypnotizing and graphic but also misleading as it becomes horrifying with Franco introducing a quite possibly one of his most disturbing ideas when he has monsters creeping out of a woman's privates. That must have been conflicting and personal for Franco - making his favorite part of a woman's anatomy horrifying.
Lina Romay as Linda was outstanding - one of her best roles - right up there with the Countess from Female Vampire. She was youthful and energetic - and slowly became more disturbed - culminating with what seemed like a complete loss of restraint and giving herself over completely into the role. Pamela Stanford commanded your attention - with her slinky, smooth, cool and mysterious demeanor - as Lorna. I'm not sure how much her ridiculously wild eye make-up played a role in how strangely fascinating she was - but she carried an amazing intensity to the role.
Franco used a resort town in the south of Spain as the setting for this story - it was still in the midst of being constructed - which allowed him to cleverly pull of successful flashbacks. Also, considering how it was being made as a resort town the architecture was a bit more unique and pretty - it provided a very surreal background for this old world Faustian tale.
The direction was classic Franco - where there were plenty of lingering scenes - which hypnotize you and leave you unaware of exactly all that's going on. The film starts with an 8 minute sex scene - and it's so intense and lingering you are left wondering what's going on - and as it pulls you out - he switches it up quickly and throws a lot at you. I personally love that shit - it pushes the boundaries of what you should be expecting and keeps me more engaged to his films than most directors. His use of a pulsating repetitive music in his soundtrack was also put to great use making the atmosphere of the film more surreal and hypnotic.
Lorna the Exorcist is a must see for Franco fans - storming into my Top 5 list of his films - and I'm grateful that this print was finally reconstructed and released with such care. I think it's a perfect representation of Franco working in his wheelhouse of sexual horror using universal themes in the early 70's - it's quite brilliant and haunting.
Monday, February 27, 2012
Thursday, February 23, 2012
I've had LORNA THE EXORCIST sitting in front of my DVD player for a week or so now - waiting to be watched - I love the cover with Lina hovering over her victim with blood trickling down her tongue - so it's been a nice couple weeks just looking at the cover. I've seen her recently in JACK THE RIPPER, THE RITES OF FRANKENSTEIN and FACELESS - but her most wonderfully, surreal and beautiful role was of the Countess in FEMALE VAMPIRE which I will need to watch again soon.
It's sad news - but as any artist passes - they will live on forever in their work - thank you for everything Lina
Monday, February 20, 2012
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Friday, February 17, 2012
2. 1/4/2012 - Straw Dogs (2011)
3. 1/5/2012 - Monamour (2006)
4. 1/6/2012 - Blood & Black Lace (1963)
5. 1/7/2012 - Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (2011)
6. 1/14/2012 - Jack the Ripper (1976)
7. 1/14/2012 - Fright Night (2011)
8. 1/15/2012 - Eugenie de Sade (1970)
9. 1/15/2012 - Midnight in Paris (2011)
10. 1/20/2012 - Casino Royale (2006)
11. 1/20/2012 - Quantum of Solace (2008)
12. 1/24/2012 - 50/50 (2011)
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Funny how I can spend some days listening to the same 5-6 songs over and over - and still keep my ear available for new music all the time...
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Monday, February 6, 2012
Thursday, February 2, 2012
I rented BABA YAGA from Netflix a last week - and it came cracked in half - I sent it back right away - requested another copy - they sent me the cracked in half copy AGAIN... So, I held onto the cracked in half copy - requested a another - then once I got a good copy - I sent the cracked version back... Just got an e-mail today - Netflix only received a empty envelope.
Now, I will be surprised if they try and charge me for it - it seems like a common loss issue with that kind of company - but they can't expect me to pay for a disc that was cracked in half... Could they?
This is ironically funny because I rented it along with SUBMARINE - which I rented a month or two ago - only for it to be delivered to the wrong address - and returned immediately - then their auditing program asked me when I recieved it... NEVER! I never got it! Why isn't NEVER an option?
So, I'm fairly certain SUBMARINE is a cursed movie.
First week in January I decided to start catching up on Jess Franco films - going throught he Amazon Marketplace - I ordered a used copy of JACK THE RIPPER which has been out of print for a while - and a new copy of LORNA THE EXORCIST which suddenly was out of stock everywhere - causing me to get nervous that this brand new release was already out of print.
I got JACK THE RIPPER right quick - watched it - loved it - and on the 10th I got notice that LORNA was only a couple towns away. Then I waited... And waited... And sent a note to the seller - they told me to wait - even though it had been two weeks since it was checked in a couple towns away... So, I waited again...
I asked once again yesterday and got a response today that they will be issuing a refund and if it ever shows up to send it back... BUT I STILL WANT IT!!!!!
So, I headed back to Amazon - and they had a copy - shipping from Amazon - for cheaper... Bastards... I'll get it on Saturday... FACE PALM!!!
I can't help but laugh at the movie madness today - hoping my movie luck gets better later tonight...
In yesterday's news... I watched my blu-ray copy of DRIVE - so motherfucking good - it made me wonder where it "ranks" it's so good - and it might be a TOP 10 FAVORITE
Monday, January 30, 2012
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
This started as a movie blog - but has now encompasses music - video games - movies - chicks - now "art"? Shit! Some of you people didn't sign up for this crap!
I'm also trying to articulate that it's been a long time - probably 10-years - since I had been dedicated to working on my artistic talents - so if it looks like crap - know I'm working on getting better - I promise it will look better to you than to me because I see the details that I missed and the spots where I really fucked up (and the cheap oil pastels don't help) - I have such a critical eye for myself - as I think most creative people do
But my articulations into narrative words that make a sweet little tale of how I'm making myself happy by drawing/painting and whatnot just keep sounding like I'm shitting out of my mouth - so SHIT - here I made this...
Shed & Wagon (based on a photograph) - in (really cheap) oil pastels on mixed media paper - 1/22/2012
This one was a result of overworking my art to death for several days - so I sketched it in 45 minutes in charcoal and called it a day - Rashomon - 1/17/2012
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Best picture - The Artist will win - Oscar voters have proven they love nostalgia and they rarely go out on a limb unless it's to award something that truly doesn't deserve to win over something "controversial". This film panders to them perfectly with celebrating Hollywood and it's got the silent film novelty shine - perfect bait.
Best Director - Whoever directed The Artist - that seems to be the Oscar voters usual MO - whoever wins best director wins best picture.
Best Actor - George Clooney will take this one over Brad Pitt - the academy loves Clooney - but I'd prefer to see Gary Oldman win it. I really like the three of them - so whoever takes it I'll be happy.
Best Actress - Michelle Williams will finally get her bell rung for this one - and why not? She's a great actress - she is quite deserving of the award - she's been "owed" this one. Streep is always a threat though.
Best Supporting Actor - Christopher Plummer - without Albert Brooks in the race (who seemed a shoo-in for a nomination) Plummer is a given - gotta honor these legacy actors before they die.
Best Supporting Actress - Berenice Bejo is my pick - I think The Help actresses will cancel each other out - it's fun that Melissa McCarthy was nominated - but she'll probably not win for a raunchy comedy - and so it's between Bejo and McTeer - and without a bulk of major nominations for the film Albert Nobbs - I'll assume that they'll prefer to give another nod to The Artist - thus I pick Bejo
Original Screenplay - Midnight in Paris will win this one - because can a silent film really win for a screenplay? I mean - it can't - can it?
Adapted Screenplay - The Descendants will win this one - seems to have the momentum to win this one
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
I’m not saying I will never see it – or one day love it – or even purchase the ultra-deluxe 6 disc blu-ray version with life-size cut outs and autographed collector dildos. I’m saying – right now – at this moment in time – I find the idea of it being forced down our collective throats offensive.
The main thing that drive me away from the film is that usually the first descriptor of the film is it’s a ‘silent film’ – which is fine – that indeed describes the film – but what if it was a talkie? What’s the freaking plot? It makes me nauseous that people don’t describe the film like any other film – and then say – “by the way it’s a silent film” – it just solidifies that the only reason why people are masturbating so heavily to it is that it’s a novelty. Just like 3D. Since we’re going backwards next we’ll get a kaleidoscope – and we can all pay $7 for a spin of watching a horse gallop and people will chop off their own heads over that.
Or I hear ‘it’s a celebrating of cinema’ – which is wonderful – more fake nostalgia for an era we are too young to have known. Just like Forest Gump. We are thoughtlessly in love with the previous era without appreciating how much we should enjoy our own – I find it ironic that Midnight In Paris came out the same year as The Artist.
Like I said – I’m not saying I won’t watch it or love it – I’m saying I don’t want to – I will give it a few years to age and if I feel like watching it then - I will. I pray it doesn’t win the Best Picture Oscar – I think it would be a major mistake looking back – because it seems to me everyone is in love with the idea of it more than the film – and I fear we’ll have another debate in X years whether Shawshank Redemption or Pulp Fiction was more robbed.
Now, get off my bridge before I grind your bones and put them in my stew!
Monday, January 16, 2012
Friday, January 13, 2012
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
As what typically happens – I publish my end of the year list – and not too long after I watch a movie that deserves a mention on that list. If I had waited just one day to publish the list – I would’ve been able to add this movie because I saw it the day after I published it.
The movie of course is TUCKER & DALE VS. EVIL – which when Netflix kept recommending it to me – I kept ignoring it because it always appeared next to such films as SUPER SNAKE VS MEGA CROC VS MECHA-SHARK and that kind of straight to DVD trash in the horror section.
TUCKER & DALE VS EVIL is ridiculous fun – it’s one of those movies I wished I came up with the concept for. It’s such a great twist on the killer hillbilly horror/slasher films – and the best part is – I went in cold – no previews – no synopsis readings – no review readings - so I didn’t know any of the jokes or any of the “twists” if they were meant to be twists or not.
Therefore I can’t give this film a review or a synopsis – because it’s a better film to me because I had no clue what to expect. All I can say is if you like horror comedies – this one is up there with DEAD ALIVE, ARMY OF DARKNESS and SHAUN OF THE DEAD – it is in the ‘top of the top’ class. To adjust my recently published Favorites of 2011 list – this one would push its way in the middle pretty easily – no lower than the #5 spot.
Monday, January 9, 2012
Saturday, January 7, 2012
Friday, January 6, 2012
#6. Super – what I really liked about Super was that it didn’t let down at what it was advertised as – it was a dark comedy involving topics and situations that you wondered if you should laugh at – disturbing and graphic – tragic and funny – the heart ultimately is to save himself he must save the girl – there’s something wonderful about that to me
#5. Rise of the Planet of the Apes – great performances – solid effects – and a truly believable story of the scientist who sets in motion the end of the world at the hands of the apes – Andy Serkis was outstanding as Caesar blending in a mind boggling way the differences between what is ape and what is human in the performance
#3. Source Code – what stuck with me about Source Code ever since I made it the first film I saw in the theater this year – was the optimism – science fiction tends to lean toward the loss of humanity and the hopeless struggle of it all – but with Source Code the idea of the hopeless struggle and pulling victory out of the jaws of defeat was so wonderfully conceived and executed
#2. 50/50 – a pleasant surprise – figuring I was in for a raunchy stoner comedy (thanks to Seth Rogen) but turned out to be a true comedy with some heart – laughing at the face of tragedy – no cheese – just great performances – the strength of the script – the fact that it never discounted the situation but never used it to drag the viewer down – it wasn’t just a “cancer comedy” – it was more of a true to life cancer story #1. Drive – intense, atmospheric, mesmerizing action, pitch perfect acting – Drive kept my excitement up well after I saw it – thinking about scenes – thinking about the execution – thinking about so many aspects – it’s the mark of a great film the resonance of it well after watching it – still feeling that atmosphere lost in questions and memories of it
Thursday, January 5, 2012
You know in all of the time we shared – I’ve never been so scared – doll me up in my bad luck – I’ll meet you there – I wish I had never taken this dare – I wasn’t quite prepared – doll me up in my bad luck – doll me up in my bad luck – I’ll meet you there...
Since, I’ve only watched MODERN TIMES and half-watched the STRAW DOGS remake while I made dinner and did some sketching – I don’t have much to movie blog about at the moment. I just kind of wanted to blog because I want to write – and with nothing really happening at work – I’ve got the time.
I’ve got a pad of paper, some charcoal pencils and soft pastels and have been doing some sketching. It’s something to take my mind off of stuff – and found out last night that it’s a good way to release some steam. I’ve done a couple of DVD covers – and that seems to be good inspiration for me for right now. I attempted a landscape but I ended up scribbling all over it – a good therapy session that was.
I keep thinking I should make a Top 10 movies from 2011 – but I don’t have 10 movies I want to put on a list – I’ve got about 6 – maybe I should chop it and put it up.
As for albums – my top 5 are – in order of artist:
- Wasting Light by Foo Fighters
- Mockingbird Time by The Jayhawks
- Circuital by My Morning Jacket
- I Am Very Far by Okkervil River
- Ashes & Fire by Ryan Adams
This is the first time in a long while a couple of my favorite artists have had one of my favorite albums of the year – Foo’s and Adams have been coasting a lot lately. Okkervil River on the other hand is getting close to a point where they seem like they might start coasting – their album was great but not any better or worse than their previous albums.
I hauled a bunch of stuff to the resale shop – and got a fair price – then I looked in the closet and questioned why I sold some of it and kept the other. I sold an album by The Broken West – and ever since I’ve listened to it over and over – and after all that hunting I did to get it – I’m disappointed I sold it without giving it a fair chance. It’s at the top of my list to reacquire for this year.
With the new year always comes the horoscopes of what to expect – and I liked mine – it aligned with what I wanted to accomplish (be more artistic – put myself out there a bit more) – but there was one that kinda creeped me out. It was on the Huffington Post – where it aligned books with star signs – the book for my sign was Hunter Thompson’s The Rum Diary... Which just so happened to be the book literally on the top of my pile of stuff to read.
A sign I’m going in the right direction? I don’t know – but damn cool – if not a little creepy.
One last thing before I quit – I never wanted any more than I could fit into my head – and still remember every single word you said and all the shit that somehow goes along with it – still there’s one thing that comforts me since I was always caged and now I’m free...
Monday, January 2, 2012
Sunday, January 1, 2012
Do you have any end of the year/beginning of the year movie traditions? What's the first movie you'll be watching in 2012? Any movie related resolutions?