filmography issue one
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Post on 22-Mar-2016
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DESCRIPTION5 pages of recommendations to get you inspired, including reviews of films and music. I will dig through the old recesses of culture and review pieces of work that are not often reviewed, so that you do not have to only hear opinions on recent releases. Also some articles and thoughts.
3DEAD MAN (1995)Dir. Jim JarmuschJohnny Depp is William Blake, a man whos parents have just died and has travelled south across America in search of a job, finds himself on the wrong end of a bullet. He is quickly put on a wanted list and must go on the run alongside a Native American called Nobody, who mistakes him for a poet. Jim Jarmuschs 6th movie is a black and white western. The score adds a surge of electrifying colour to the wonderfully monochrome images. Dead Man contains Robert Mitchums final film role. The movie is so good that this goes unnoticed. Having been rejected by John Hurt in an attempt to become a companys accountant, William Blake meets a young woman named Thel Russell. Their brief romance is heartbreaking, as we realise that Blakes fate is something far more important than to fall in love. Williams innocence is embodied by a shot of Thels breasts, and her failure to find love is masterfully shown by her paper roses. What follows will turn William Blake into a man, as he finds himself between Thel and her ex-boyfriend. Thel, in her newfound confidence, rejects Gabriel Byrne who subsequently pulls a gun on the two. William reacts in time to save himself, but not without a bullet in the chest. William Blake is a dead man.Every time the film fades to black, you feel this is Blakes last moment as he ventures beyond the world of science and into a tale of myth. A life is not complete until one has died. The bullet in William Blakes heart completes him, and he soon becomes a magnet for white man bullets. William Blake asks two bounty hunters if they know his poetry, and then proceeds to write it with their blood. You feel that any achievement man makes is unimportant, as every death in the film leaps higher than the life of the character, most significantly when a dead mans head is crushed by the boot of a fellow hit man. But our heros death was followed by his life. He would carry on living after death and here he becomes something that he could never have been in life before death. Blakes mediocracy caused man to drive him out. His poetry was not his own, and the death he did cause was only a matter of circumstance. This is an art house film with better one liners than Die Hard. But having just written a paragraph on the meanings of this film, I have come to the conclusion that the meaning is inconsequential. Looking at the frame in which our deadman is on a boat down the
river of death, I realise that we must learn to take pleasure in story alone. A story alone is the best form of escapism. In his death, our dead man has salvaged a story out of a wretchedly average life. He makes the effort to take us to the underworld in his last breath , and I am truly grateful. It was a trip he couldnt have taken alive, and what a trip it was.
FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION:NIGHT ON EARTH- Another film by Jim JarmuschWHATS EATING GILBERT GRAPE- Another brilliant film starring Johnny Depp, with a performance from Leonardo DiCaprio that really should have won him an oscar.UNFORGIVEN- Similarly subverts the western genre, in which Clint Eastwood makes the western to end all westerns.ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE O.S.T- The soundtrack to Jarmuschs 2014 vampiric masterpiece.
Rhy thm Of The SaintsPaul SimonA f a n t a s t i c a l l y consistent and calm record that flows so brilliantly with the african sounds and Paul Simons typically relaxing voice. Best experienced as an LP.
Seasons Of Your DayMazzy StarThe 4th album from the dreamy band Mazzy Star, and perhaps their best. Some of the riffs have been dropped leaving a sound that is best described by the wonderful album cover.
WHY WATCHING FOOTBALL I S B E T T E R T H A N WATCHING A MOVIE. . . SOMETIMES.Apologies for the title of this article as, I assure you, football is often not as exciting as watching a movie. Having said that, I would much rather watch Southampton Vs C h e l s e a t h a n experience Michael Bays latest. Yes, Football has more interesting characters than Transformers, and no matter how boring it is, it will defini te ly fini sh after 90 minutes. However, there is an argument that football as a whole can be a better use of your time than even the greatest of films. My point being, football is so utterly irrelevant that it has become one of the great forms of escapism.Good fi lms are often layered in subtext, commenting on the inner workings of life. The limiting factor of cinemas ability for escapism also comes into the fact that everyone can see what you are seeing, whereas books require you to create the world for yourself, just as directors do. Perhaps the escapism comes into film when you stand behind the camera. As a filmmaker, I concur with the statement I have just made.
VOLVER (2006)Dir. Pedro AlmodvarCentered around a town obsessed with death, where the women spend their spare time cleaning their own graves and the winds are so strong that a portion of the population are on the verge of insanity. In the meantime, Raimundas mother, Irene, has come back from the dead for a reason unknown to all but herself. Pedro Almodovars 16th film looks at
the re la t ionsh ips between mothers, daughters and sisters. Some mothers are t h e i r d a u g h t e r s sisters, and struggles l ike this make it harder to understand everyones points of views. Whether or not a man has left the picture because their daughter has stabbed him or otherwise is left up to which point of view Almodovar decides to show us. It is so refreshing to fi n d a fi l m s o interested in the life of women. It manages t o s i d e s t e p t h e c l ichd image of movie men, as their inadequacy is shown by the fac t that women cant leave their jobs but men can get fired, rather
than belt marks on the skin of a child. Soon Raimunda must literally clean up after her husband. But this theme lies faintly in the background. It is a difficult film to decipher, but its interest in the unfinished relationships between the living and the dead is inescapable. Rather than treading the path that tells the story of a ghost that comes back to haunt us, we see just how delightful it would be to find that your mother had decided to come back for just a bit longer, and it is in this that we understand Raimundas point of view.
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A PROBLEM WITH THE ORIGINALOriginality seems to be a problem when it comes to the arts. My naive self went to see Richard Ayoades The Double recently, and came out smiling to myself; it was a true original. In retrospect, I realise that the concept of the Doppelgnger is not entirely new. I have read reviews, however, that crucify the film, claiming it to be a detritus version of Brazil. Ayoade has noted that Brazil was something that was purposefully avoided, and in his defence, Brazil and The Double are rather dissimilar, and I could go into an analysis of the multiple layers within which would confirm that it really does have something fresh and interesting to say. However, this trend, in which critics put down a piece of work for having remnants of past works, seems to be growing. The album, We Are The 21st Century Ambassadors Of Peace And Magic, by the duo known as Foxygen was one of the best Albums of 2013. It harked back to the tunes of The Rolling Stones, and removed itself from the clutter of the average record. It still had a distinct feeling of originality and Darwinism, building upon songs that the two had grown up with, to create an evolutionary sound that would become the best of the year. I feel like art isnt merely theft, as one must do something with what they have stolen for it to be worth anyones time. Great art comes in when you make something better than what it was you stole from in the first place.