Only Theo Panayides Has Wings

This is a blog about Theo Panayides, the cyprustician online critic that writes reviews of movies old and new on his website ( He is very good. In fact, he is awesome. It is also an exercise for my english-writing abilities, as I'm from Brazil.

Location: Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Fake Theo Interview

The TheoBlog has been given the opportunity to conduct a fake interview with critic extraordinare Theo Panayides, of the small island of Cyprus. We talked to him about his life, his passion for movies, and his current projects, with very interesting results.

We met in the quiet lobby of a hotel in Cyprus, ordered coffee, and began the interview:

TheoBlog: Theo, thanks for sharing a bit of your busy schedule to talk to us. We were looking forward to this interview.

Theo: Right.

TheoBlog: Let’s start from the beginning. Tell us about your childhood.

Theo: [pause] ...Is this a joke? That’s such a bland question.

TheoBlog: ...Uh...

Theo: I give your question a 35.

TheoBlog: I’m sorry.

Theo: That’s out of 100.

TheoBlog: Sorry…

Theo: …

TheoBlog: …

Theo: I was born in Cyprus; a small island. My father had a large hyena farm. On the weekends, he traveled to the city, drank vodka and slept with whores. My mother never knew. She was a housewife. I went to public school in the morning and took care of the hyenas in the afternoon. I had to feed those hyenas. I slept with a whore when I was 14 years ol--

TheoBlog: Okay--

Theo: She was an oriental. She had supple legs. I paid her 20 dollars.

TheoBlog: That’s enough, thank you.

Theo: I loved that whore.

TheoBlog: Theo, when did your fascination with movies begin?

Theo: I was thirteen when Tootsie came out. It changed everything.

TheoBlog: [pause] Could you tell us a little bit more about that?

Theo: Yes. Let me take out my notebook and see what I wrote about it.

[Theo opens his briefcase and takes out an old notebook; finds a particular page and reads it]

Theo: “Tootsie. Oh, Tootsie. My wonderful Tootsie. Why are you so full of joy and emotions? Why do you make me laugh so? I have learned so much about life because of you. About men and women, and what brings them together. You truly shine. 67.” [he closes the notebook] Next question.

TheoBlog: You wrote that when you were fourte—

Theo: Next question.

TheoBlog: Okay… I understand you have a movie in the making.

Theo: It is called The Malgaat. It is about my childhood experiences; a coming-of-age picture. It features a hyena farm being invaded by Pauly Shore, and Lucy Liu as a hooker with a heart of gold. It has sex and violence and laughter. It’s about the life in Cyprus, but also a metaphor for the post-9/11 world. I’m currently trying to contact KT Tunstall of the perfect pop-nugget “Suddenly I See” to do a theme song for this picture.

TheoBlog: When is it going to be released?

Theo: I have not yet began shooting this picture. So I can’t answer that. But it will be done. It’s actually a trilogy.

TheoBlog: A trilogy?

Theo: Yes, like the hobbit pictures. The second part is gonna be called The Malgaat Reincarnate and the third part is gonna be called The Malgaat Reverberations. It’s gonna be awesome.

TheoBlog: Could you tell us about your experience in being a film critic?

Theo: Oy. It is truly annoying. You see a picture, then as soon as you come out of the theater you think “Zorba! I’m gonna have to write a review about it!”. And then you put the little rating in, then you write the goddamn review, and then you add the film to various lists and logs, and then some random internet nerd writes you an e-mail saying “Hey why did you give that rating to that movie you fuck, you fucking greek” and then I have to respond with an explanation while appearing polite. And then the end of the month comes and I don’t even get a paycheck. Truly awful. Awful.

TheoBlog: Do you plan to continue being a film critic if you become successful as a filmmaker?

Theo: [Theo laughs] God, no.

TheoBlog: Did you have any other jobs?

Theo: Yes. I worked as an attorney for a couple of years. Then I started a band in Cyprus. The band was called Repulsive Rodents. We had a single called “My Kind of Gal” which was a success in Cyprus, but the album flopped. So we quit a year later. Then I worked at a bakery for a few years, then I started my website.

TheoBlog: What finally led you to starting it?

Theo: I was trading e-mails with Mike D’Angelo, an american film critic who had started his own page back then, and he said it was a great way to meet women.

TheoBlog: So that was the sole reason?

Theo: Yes. I wanted to have intercourse.

TheoBlog: Ok… Our time is nearly up, so we’re gonna ask just a few more quick questions. Like, what’s your favorite city?

Theo: London. I lived there for a couple of years. Great place.

TheoBlog: Favorite childhood memory?

Theo: My father gave me a silver watch when I turned twelve. I was very pleased.

TheoBlog: Favorite cussword?

Theo: You motherfucking whore.

TheoBlog: What’s your fav--

Theo: Bitch. Cunt. Fucking bitch. You cocksucking fag. Motherfucker. Cock.

TheoBlog: Wha--

Theo: I wanna fuck you up the ass.


TheoBlog: …What’s your favorite song?

Theo: Perfect pop-nugget “Suddenly I See”, by KT Tunstall.

TheoBlog: What would you want God to tell you when you arrived at the pearly gates?

Theo: “What? 55 for The Conversation?!” [Theo laughs uproariously]

TheoBlog: …

Theo: I would want him to tell me that I was a great man, and changed many people’s lives.

TheoBlog: Which celebrity do you have a crush on?

Theo: KT Tunstall of the perfect pop-nugget “Suddenly I See”.

TheoBlog: Favorite quote?

Theo: I knew you were gonna ask that question, so I memorized one: “Let it all dissolve. Let the films bleed into each other, let my mind go blank. Let the future feed upon the moment, like the wild dogs at the end of La Vie Nouvelle. Let it all go wrong. I was happy here and now.”

TheoBlog: That’s beautiful. Who said it?

Theo: Theodorus Panayides. [smiles]

TheoBlog: Oh. So you’re quoting yourself?

Theo: Who else? [giggles]

TheoBlog: Ok, that about does it. Thank you for your time.

Theo: Right.

Friday, November 18, 2005


I'm sorry for the lack of updates. I'm studying for my SAT(Brazillian edition) which is happening next week, Sunday, 27.

But what's more important is that there's a music festival Saturday, a day before the SAT, where SONIC YOUTH, THE FLAMING LIPS, IGGY POP and NINE INCH NAILS are playing. Yes, it will be unspeakably awesome. It's probably not a good idea to go to something like this a day before an important test, but then again, you know, there's always, obviously, you know... No, there's no excuse. It's a bad idea. I'm being irresponsible. But put yourself in my situation: would you miss it?

Soon after this, the Theo-worshipping will resume.

EDIT: Oh, yes, special thanks to Enid who already bought me the tickets and will acompany me in this magical journey through the world of indie rock and etc.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Day 5 and 6 of the SPIFF

I went to this somewhat quasi-fancy bar in São Paulo, and they showed cheesy 80's videos at a TV on the corner, with stuff like The Police (Don't stand so, don't stand so, etc) and Alphaville and A-Ha and etc playing. Then I was at a cab going to a theater, and the cabbie, in his 50s, was listening to an old Depeche Mode song on the radio, and boy was he digging it. He was practically dancing as he was driving the car. During my time there, I saw at least seven girls wearing the cool mullet haircut of Jane Fonda in KLUTE (which I understand is 70's but still felt like 80's) and I gave a friend of mine an illegal copy of NAPOLEON DYNAMITE (a movie with an 80's feel), and she gave me a CD of Franz Ferdinand's (weak) new album, "You Could Have It So Much Better", which is basically an 80's rip-off, and which the second track, "Do You Want To", is so 80's it almost hurts. I saw two movies that were entirely or partially set in the 80's, THE SQUID AND THE WHALE and MYSTERIOUS SKIN.

What does it mean, etc.

Anyway, we skipped PEACOCK and rented FUNNY GAMES, because we were in a Haneke mood. Turns out this one is an 84, pretty much Haneke's masterpiece. A friend who saw PEACOCK really liked it, and it won the Directing and Cinematography award of the SPIFF, so I guess we could have picked a better one to skip. But I don't mind. And then...

Day 5

THE SQUID AND THE WHALE (78): Turns out this one is way better than I was expecting. A François Truffaut film with a sharp, intelligent, agile script. It really does feel like a Truffaut film, the way it skips through the narrative with a fast pace, most scenes under 1 minute, like small glimpses of various small moments of the family's lives forming a bigger picture, and Baumbach really shoots it like a Nouvelle Vague picture: hand-held, sharp cutting, with the occasional jump-cut (and a funny jump-cut joke), the way it crystallizes a moment like when Anna Paquin touches Jesse Eisenberg's hair, cutting to a close up of the touch, acknowledging it's significance to the character and turning into a Moment. It's awesome. The detail in this is incredible, so much so that I can't imagine Baumbach not going through the events of this movie. It feels autobiographical, whether it was or wasn't. Little stuff like Laura Linney pulling skin from her lips, Owen Kline asking his dad for money to buy something, then getting there and not having enought (having to go back and get more), kids learning new words ("philistines"), the first time getting drunk, that awesome 80's soundtrack, etc. And it's very very funny, even William Baldwin's one note "My Brotha" tennis instructor managed to get laughs out of me just by showing up at the screen. And Baumbach makes his intentions clear by referencing THE WILD CHILD, THE MOTHER AND THE WHORE, BREATHLESS (in the most hilarious scene) and others. It's always perched between the sad and the funny, often making you feel both simultaneously -- like the scene when Mom and Dad break out the news that they're separating -- and every moment rings true because of the amazing acting. Somebody give Jeff Daniels an Oscar, thanks. The problem really is that it's too short. Not that it lacks in anything, but makes you wish for more. I really did want to spend more time with this fucked up family. With 20 extra minutes of awesome scenes, this would've been the best of the year. I hope someone eventually makes a movie this good about being a teenager in the late 90's-early-2000's.

Day 6

KINGS AND QUEEN (67): You have to marvel at Desplechin for cutting from a sad, melancholic scene to Mathieu Almaric doing a trip-hop dance number. That takes some guts. The real problem with this movie is that I sat too close to the screen and they were using eletronic subtitles in a small screen under the big screen, so I had to keep moving my eyes from the subtitles to the big screen, so I was either reading what the characters were talking about or watching what they were doing. That means I missed both a lot of what was said and a lot of what was shot. So this rating is only temporary, and I'll definitely watch this again. I'll I can say about this is that Desplechin is also ripping off the Nouvelle Vague, what with the jump-cutting and sudden bursts of melodramatic score and wonderful spontaneity at the screen, and mixing up humour and drama with almost carelessness, you know, like Life and stuff. I did not read anything about this one, so the only thing I can give you is that it references Greek mythology, and the ex-husbands death looks like it was shot in a theater stage and that the movie is both a Tragedy and a Comedy. I'm not sure how this all fits. The two stand-out scenes of the picture: the angry letter of Devos' father and the epilogue in which Almaric gives a long monologue to Devos' son about Life. Very good.

THE WAYWARD CLOUD (82): Hello. My name is Tsai Ming-Liang. This name is Taiwanese because I come from Taiwan. But if you liked my movies, you are my friend, therefore you can call me my nickname given by my friends: Laser. This year of 2005 I made a masterpiece. Another one, some might say. I had the idea for this movie when I was eating some watermelon and I got a boner. Then I thought "Hey, what if I used watermelons to simbolize Sexual Desires? That sounds like a pretty good creative idea for a motion picture." And then I thought "Hmmm, I'm thirsty, and water is the source of life, very much like Romantic Love. Also, my boyfriend gave me nice shoes today and I'm so in love with him. I'm so in love with him that makes my watermelon-induced boner feel cheap and useless. Oh wait... (pause) There you go, that's a masterpiece right there." Then I dropped some acid and wrote a script in five hours. Then I called my friend, Ling-Su, and had him read it. He said "Laser, this is the one you'll be remembered for. It's loses the naturalistic vibe of your earlier efforts like THE RIVER, but it becomes abstract and surreal. It's also nice to see that you brought in much more humour this time, because you definitely are a genius at that, Deadpan Humour. The symbolism is somewhat more obvious, so part of the fun of sorting out the meanings is also lost, but whatever. Every shot (from my abilities to predict which shots you are going to use just by using the script sample you gave me) is mastefully composed, with beautiful art direction, rich colors and detail. Also, this is more fun (like Theo Panayides said, an obscure online critic we often read here in Taiwan), and while the statement (I think) you're making is not as powerful or interesting as the one from THE RIVER, it is nonetheless very well said, and with room for ambiguity. And there's a motif of Replacement, like people replacing water for watermelon because it's cheaper (zing!) and replacing real contact and meaning in relationships for pornography, and like that awesome scene where they're trying to shoot a sex scene in a bathtub, but the water runs out, so they try to replace it with pee, etc. Also, Laser, it was hilarious just to see the lenghts you'd go to to make the film entirely symbolic. Like when the porn star is complaining about ants in the elevator in the beginning, two guys pretend they're taking the ants out to get a chance to grope her breasts, and they are both holding watermelons. Awesome, Laser. Well done." After Ling-Su stopped praising my masterfulness and left, I took a large glass of water, thinking of what the Folco-type purists would think of this one. I hoped one of those would yell out "Holy fucking shit" in awe, as he was leaving the theater. And I hoped this dream would turn out to be true.

Yeah, good festival. 12 movies in six days is very little, but I was short on cash and I was lazy, and 5 of those were 70+, which is great average. Next year, hopefully, I'll be living in São Paulo, so I'll be able to catch twice as much as this year.

Also, during my trip back to Goiania, I realized "Hail to the Thief" is even better than "Amnesiac", second only to "Kid A" in my ranking of Radiohead's masterpieces. And The National's "Alligator" is one of the best albums of the decade so far. This has been my quick thoughts on the World of Music. Thank you.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Day 3 and 4 of the SPIFF

I thought this would be much more active, and I never expected the drunkedness and the partying and the etc to get so much in the way. I guess it's a good thing. More useless comments (shorter than usual):

Day 3

MYSTERIOUS SKIN (59): So Gregg Araki is obviously gay. Not just because he made a movie about homossexuality, but because of the honesty and fearlessness and knowledge and conviction he deals with the subject. This is another one with a slight Sollondz-esque feel -- I guess this means weird, quirky characters, stylized dialogue and a somewhat cartoonish vibe, and also dealing with sexuality and akwardness and etc -- but with a lighter touch and humour. I'm not exactly sure why I didn't like this more. It's admirable. It never portrays the pedophile Baywatch-like coach as a monster, it throws wacky and seemingly useless scenes at you -- e.g. the part where the geeky gay stick his hand into a cow's anus, the drawing of the alien with the baseball shoes -- to have them connect in the end, making the whole alien subplot as a (bizarre) way of the geeky gay of dealing with his childhood trauma (is this like Freud), and there's some funny scenes, and a nice ending, and I suppose Joseph-Gordon Lewis (or Levit or Le Wit) was good (although I felt some phoniness in his mega-bad boy-ish vibe). No, really, don't ask me why I didn't like this. Anyway, it was funny that in the last shot, about a minute before the movie was over, when you could tell it was about to end, like 8 or 9 people just got out of their seats impatiently and left quickly, like they couldn't even bother waiting for Neil to finish his narration. What is up. Did they not like this? Was this too gay for them? Were they rushing off to catch BREAKFAST ON PLUTO or something. Jesus.

THE CHILD (75): Awesome. It's schematic (as Theo said) and sometimes a little implausible -- Bruno's decision to sell the baby was very sudden, ditto for his decision to Do The Right Thing at the end, and etc -- and sometimes a little obvious -- like when Bruno plays with his girlfriend, throwing her on the ground, running around, wetting his shoes with mud and kicking the wall, making fart jokes, because he is suppose to be a child, thus giving the title a double meaning. Geddit. -- and it loses a bit of momentum before the last 20 minutes. But I mean, c'mon. It's breathtaking stuff. I don't even have much to say about this, except that (with the possible exception of WAR OF THE WORLDS) it features the Best Chase Scene of the Year (is MTV going to nominate this movie or what the fuck), the scene where he wants go retrieve the baby is so tense it's almost cruel, the fight where the chick explodes at Bruno (all in a single take) is genius, etc etc etc. I don't think the general audience apreciated very much, but whatever right. Now Dardenne Bros. go make a science fiction movie. It will be a step in the right direction. Trust me. Thank you.

THE WORLD (55): For a moment there (I lost myself!) I thought this was going to be the masterpiece of the festival. The first half hour, actually. It opens with an extended shot of a dancer asking for a band-aid in the backstage of a show, and it's beautifully lit and it looks incredible (was this shot on that super video camera that Lucas used in the Star Wars prequels?). And then there's the title shot, where the "The World" is superimposed over a long shot of the park, with the Eifel Tower in the middle, and a peasant-looking dude crosses the frame in the lower half, and the (wonderful) score kicks in, and it's just awesome. And then there's a lot of hilarious stuff like "I'm having lunch in India" and shots panning across countries and monuments and "Look, this is America. Those are the Twin Towers that were attacked. We still got them here."; "Great!" and there are russian dancers trying to communicate with the chinese ones and all kinds of shit and you're thinking "This could go on forever...". But then a boring plot kicks in which takes up about half of the scenes, and they only occasionally use the park. It loses steam. If you cut about 50 minutes of this movie, it could go 70+ easily. And no, I do not care if the main plot actually means anything. It's boring.

BROKEN FLOWERS (52): What is there to say about this? Bill Murray gives his deadpan looks and funny line readings, Jarmusch comes up with funny (if a little dumb) ideas for ex-girfriends -- one became an Animal Communicator, another one a Stepford Wife, etc (Jesus, I could come up with this stuff in five minutes) -- and there's a perfunctory mystery plot that remains unresolved (PS to Jarmusch: this is not deep or ambiguous, it's as dumb and cliche as a dramatic revelation of the mystery, maybe more). Now it's officially time to give Bill Murray a role as a fast-talking sharp-tongued type person. Seriously.

MANDERLAY (49): "It's just bashing, albeit provocative enough to be enjoyable, if it worked as drama". Yes. There was applause at the end of this, when John Hurt says his pseudo-provocative crap about America in the V.O. I guess it just goes to show the amount of dislike brazillians have for the american government (or, I guess, the country in general). But I disagree with whoever thinks that Lars is trying to make some kind of pro-authoritarian statement. There's no way in hell that Danny Glover's character or his decision not to move beyond the slavery system are considered good things in this movie -- in the same way that Grace's decision to shoot the entire village of Dogville in the first movie was obviously not something Lars was supporting.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Day 2 of the SP

I didn't update last night because, well, you know, alcohol, hangover, etc, so I am a day behind. But anyway:

A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE (69): Did I read something wrong or was this movie supposed to be one of those simple, straightforward thrillers that are subverted by Cronenberg's ability to make the violence in it disgusting and embarrasing, i.e. the Dogville Twist? Am I way off? I imagine I am, because I did not find much evidence of said subversion, aside from two things: (1) the sex scene between Aragorn and his wife that starts as an agressive, violent assault and ends in passionate humping, making the "Violence as Pleasure" point very well and clear, and (2) quick shots of very gory wounds during the violent scenes. But neither built any kind of unease that was necessary for said subversion or criticism, unless as an afterthought. In fact, I doubt anyone who doesn't know who Cronenberg is will take it as anything other than a straight fun type thriller with Aragorn being the redeming hero with an ugly past and etc. What it does achieve is ambivalence towards the actions of Aragorn, which is nice. It never seems to support it, nor criticize it directly, independent of Cronenberg's real intentions. In fact, the final scene, with Aragorn arriving at his family dinner and his daughter picking up his plate, is the only real moment where you feel the movie may be forgiving what Aragorn did, and yet their (the family's) faces seem so shattered and traumatized and etc. I also thought the whole stylized comic-bookness of the movie very interesting. The archetype-type characters, corny dialogue and LOTR-like score, etc, they really do show the movie's original form, and Cronenberg kept it all. This is almost Sin City-like -- except the graphic novel itself seems to be much much better than Sin City. William Hurt is hilarious. The audience broke out in laughter several times during the extended fight climax, and a friend of mine would giggle every time she saw a gore shot. "What the hell, you are sick", etc.

Oh, and a brazillian aside: we recently had a voting to decide whether we should make stronger laws for prohibition of weapon sales, which made it a Hot Topic here for months, with heated discussions about the use and utility of fire weapons and the cause of violence in Brazil and in general and etc. Anyway, the "No" won by a large margin, so no new laws will be passed against weapon sales (unfortunately, IMO). This whole shebang made the general feel of the screening more uneasy than usual. Everytime Aragorn's wife would reach for the shotgun and try to load it, or when she leaves it in the middle of the room and his teenage son picks it up to look at it, you could feel the tension, identification of the audience, etc. Interesting. I guess, if the audience would take the movie as it is (without the subversion), it's probably more of a "No" movie than a "Yes" movie. Interesting. I should see this again, by the way.

DIG! (76): Yeah, holy shit, this was fucking awesome. What is up with the lack of enthusiasm for this. No masterpiece or even particularly important, but most of the footage is electric and breathtaking and very funny and occasionally moving. It never goes into any in-depth explorations of any particular subject in the rock industry; only by following the two bands -- both starting at roughly the same level of success, one going down down down and the other going up up up -- does it achieve a statement about discipline and commitment and concessions needed to get anywhere (or somewhere) in this particular business. It's funny that Anton keeps calling The Dandy Warhols a sell-out band, a "cartoon band", and yet says their albums are great, what with the irony of him being supposedly "truthful" and going down the drain. But actually, anything he says is funny. He's an egomaniac, megalomaniac jackass, who does not seem to have much talent in the first place. Also, his tambourinist (sp?) Joel Gier (or Girth or whatever) is so hilarious, with his wacky hair and british accent and his uselessness in the band. Also, it's funny how in every single show of the Brian Jonestown Massacre, a fight breaks out, and they are always hilarious (until they start get embarrasing, and then depressing). Also, I found the ending very moving, although I don't remember what about it, exactly. Also, what is up with me liking the "decadent hispters" movies, what with this and LAST DAYS being awesome. Also, I heard The Dandy Warhols' "Thirteen Tales of Urban Bohemia" a couple of times through and it seems to be pretty good album, etc.

Oh, today's bloggy aside? I stood in line for coffee next to Fernando Meirelles, worlwide popstar brazillian director. He looks like a doofus in person. He's part of the jury for this SPIFF, if I'm not mistaken. Anyway, I did not get an autograph or photos or anything (although a friend almost convinced me). I figured I do not care about him enough to want his presence in a picture of me. In fact, I should have gone up to him and said "Hey Fernando Meirelles. Good job on CITY OF GOD. Bad job on THE CONSTANTLY IDIOTIC GARDENER. That one was pretty retarded. Why did you do the retarded movie? That movie is only worth 36 in my 100 point scale. That's pretty bad. That's as bad as CONSTANTINE. Or did you like that one too?". Etc.

Friday, October 28, 2005

The Day 1 of Fest

After a mind-numbing, weeping-baby-ing, guy-sitting-next-to-you-with-BO-ing fourteen hour bus trip from Goiania to São Paulo, only accompanied by Radiohead and The National CDs and the hope that the next few days will not suck as much, I arrived at the terminal and met with the buds and already felt as if things were going to get going in a nice way.

Anyway, it is nice to be in a huge city again (this is starting to sound like Theo's festival blog), the whole diversity thing going on, huge archtecture structures (sp?etc), an excutive-type with a nice suit holding a dog's collar sitting next to a punkish teen with a Che Guevara handbag and etc, you know how it is. I'm sure I had a few anecdotes for the day, but I sure as hell can't think of any now, because I'm sleepy and there's this dude sitting next to me playing Metallica on a guitar and reading what I'm writing, so etc.

Anyway, a few quick thoughts on...

ME AND YOU AND EVERYONE WE KNOW (61): What it is with this movie is that Miranda July has a bit of the Todd Solondz sensibility (Hal Hartley also came to mind) except she's not perverted or self-loathing (at least not as much). The entire thing has a dreamy feel, the dialogue is slightly stylized, the narrative feels constructed as to fit all of Miranda July's ideas for images, sounds, moments, dialogues; even though most of it doesn't really cohere, it is still a sight to see, a huge, rich collection of such moments as a gold fish on top of a moving car, a guy setting his own hand on fire, pink shoes with "Me" and "You" written on them dancing across a pink carpet, and such stuff. It's quirky, but never in an annoying way. The quirkiness in this case creates an uneasy feeling, not the typical inviting "Oh look how cute she collects sea shells that look like turtles etc!", and she also plays the weirdness for occasional deadpan hilarity, like the online sex chat with helpfull tips by the younger brother. I thought I found a connecting theme when the old dude (July's character's father?) says that "people are always looking for things they cannot have" (or something like that. I don't take notes. I mean jesus) -- July is in love with a guy who has no interest in her, tries to get her art to people who have no interest in it, the dad tries hard to be liked by his kids, the young one tries to change time in the end by knocking a coin on a pole (and with success!) -- but anyway, it still seems a little slight. I'll leave theme to better minds (aka the Theoster). Also, funky eletronic soundtrack.

HIDDEN (70): A disapointment. Not that it is bad. No sir. This movie is all kinds of awesome (ok maybe not all kinds but you know what I am talking about so thanks). But it is also frustrating. I guess I'm overrating it a little, because at least 4 or 5 of those points are out of pure objective admiration; if I'd grade it entirely on my response, it would be a 66, most likely. Some problems with my viewing experience: (1) by putting together all the pieces, like the trailer, reading 30 thousand different (non-spoilery) comments on Toronto blogs, knowing that the identity of the terrorizer will not be explained, and that there's a whole "War on Iraq" guilt subtext, well... when I actually got to watching the damn thing, there was not much to look for. I guessed most of the plot. Heck, I even knew from the moment that SPOILER puts his hand on his pocket to reach out for a SPOILER, that he would SPOILER himself with it in a really disturbing way, which took out some of the (immense, I imagine) shock. The tension I felt throughout was a mix of "oh lord just make it stop because this is so unpleasant" and "oh lord just move on because I'm way ahead of this movie". And also (2) Haneke makes this deliberately frustrating, by not giving the audience any "release" or "payoff", not even a climatic scene like the one at the end of CODE UNKNOWN (the "Drums + Steadicam" one). It feels impersonal, lacking any emotional core, and most of its tension's power would dissipate with a second viewing (right?). But this is still masterful stuff. Theo's right about the "Unknown Forces controlling our lives" this has going for it: there's even a scene during a shooting of Auteil's show where he's given off-screen directions on how to react while the show ends. And it is still nerve-racking: a friend would bury her face in my arm everytime she thought something bad was going to happen, and it is to Haneke's credit that she spent at least 60% of the movie with her face buried. Even a simple kitchen shot with Auteil buttering his bread or Binoche washing dishes was like "oh fuck something's gonna happen now. I can feel it. Anytime now. Oh lord it is going to be ugly. Oh no". And this is a good thing. Now Haneke please have shit actually happen more often. Ok? Thanks.

Oh yeah, I remembered a bloggy-aside type comment I wanted to make: the cinephile crowd during festival time is particularly friendly and open. One smart 30-ish guy overheard me and a friend talking about THE MANDY LAY while waiting in the line to HIDDEN and he was all friendly commenting his experience with it: "Oh, I was getting kind of bored because it lost DOGVILLE's freshness, but the last 20 minutes are breathtaking." Also, a cute 20-ish lady overheard me and another friend discussing about how the screenings are selling out easily and the difficulty to get tickets, and she happily dropped in her two cents. The weird thing is that they both said Wim Wenders' DON'T COME KNOCKING was the best of the festival they'd seen, so they must clearly be out of their minds (right?). Also, the same guy in line also said "Dardennes' THE SON is a fucking bore". So yeah do not trust the random friendly cinephiles.

Tomorrow: more rambling, retarded, incoherent, filled-with-spelling-mistakes type comments on THE VIOLENCE'S HISTORY and THE DIG(!).

PS: One of the buds, Khansc, is very sick, and will miss the festival because of it. We were all feeling for you, bud, while Haneke drop-kicked our asses. Try to make it to the MANDERLAY screening at least. Etc.

Monday, October 17, 2005

The Schedule of the São Paulo

Tentative schedule (10/28 - 11/2):

- CINEMA, ASPIRINAS AND SUCH CRAP is ditched. DIG!, is back in. The time constraints are not that big, so we will make it in time.
I think that's about it. The internet tickets for the last screening of HIDDEN (the one I'm going) were sold out in a few hours and I missed them. So one of my buds (the V dude) is going to the theater and get in line for the remaining tickets as soon as it opens. I think we will be alright, etc. If that doesn't work, I'll kill someone in line and steal their ticket (thus, giving Haneke something to make another movie about).

Updates on the Schedule:
- Saturday: DIG unfortunately ditched for time constraints and etc. The acclaimed brazillian movie CINEMA, ASPIRINAS E URUBUS replaces it.
- Sunday: TICKETS ditched because of time constraints.
- Monday: Victor Sjostrom's THE SCARLETT LETTER substitutes WHERE THE TRUTH LIES because of time constraints.
- Tuesday: KONG QUE added to the schedule, because it may be awesome.
- Wednesday: a new spot for WHERE THE TRUTH LIES (because I don't want to let Egoyan down, although he will probably let ME down). MY SUMMER OF LOVE and SOY CUBA go down the drain etc.
- Further alterations are expected.

Friday 28
THE CASH - 11:10PM (this is fucking late, I hope you wont bore me Mr. Haneke etc. Actually, who am I kidding, I will eat this shit up)

Saturday 29
DIG! - 7:30PM

Sunday 30
THE MOTHERFUCKING WORLD (the Jia movie) - 8:10PM

Monday 31

Tuesday 1
THE MOVIE WHERE TSAI MING-LIANG SHOWS HIS MAD SKILLZ - 10:20PM (this is going to be so fucking awesome)

Wednesday 2

Yes, it's very boring. Believe it or not, there isn't much else that's interesting. No THREE TIMES, no LAST DAYS, no BRICK, no GAY COWBOY PICTURE, no REGULAR LOVERS, etc. But at least there's more time for the drinking and discussing and the laughter and tears and etc. I'd be willing to bet we'll miss a few screenings out of laziness or boredom (watch out Greg Araki!!!).

Anyway, I'll be doing comments on these motion pictures probably in the same day I see them. But beware, I'll be drunk and/or sleepy, so it is not going to be a pretty picture. I will be making retarded observations, more than usual. I will try to tell a few anecdotes Theo style, so you can learn more about Brazillian culture and retardation.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

All The Primer's Men

Here's what I'm gonna do. Since I am not getting drunk tonight or doing Karaoke renditions of Arcade Fire's "Cold Wind" (no, you're the fanboy! Fuck off) and I've already seen like eighty movies today, so what I'm gonna do is write about a few movies I've seen recently. Nothing to do with my obsession with Theo's work or with movies anyone really gives a shit about anymore, and these comments are more about my particular tastes than the films themselves, so this is pretty much useless to anyone who is not me. So don't bother. In a few days I'll be back at writing about how awesome Theo's new festival blog is or how the São Paulo Film Festival is already in the process of revealing it's selection (which is exciting) or one of those random thoughts posts.


I've recently seen Alan J. Pakula's ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN (I'm not going to do a Vern-acularized version of this title because I intend this commentary to be (half)serious, but anyway, it would've been something like THE PRESIDENTS ARE ALL MEN (ha ha ha!)). It's the first time I've seen and in no way I expected it to be so awesome. What it is with this particular movie is that it's crafted with a documentary approach. There are no shaky cameras, but Pakula gives it an intense sense of reality with naturalistic details and performances. I can't point you out to many examples, because I've seen this movie a few days ago, but there's a six minute shot of Woodward (Redford) in his office, with him in the foreground making calls and trying to investigate clues, while in the background a group of people gather around a TV set (the content of which you don't see), dissipate, another co-worker out of focus tries to get Woodward's attention, heads and bodies enter and leave the frame, gesticulate, and Pakula shoots it with a really slow zoom in. It's not just that the content of this particular scene is tense, but that it feels like you are looking at the scene from a secret security camera. Or maybe, more to Pakula's intensions probably, from a spy camera, installed by a governement conspiracy.

Another realistic, genius element of PRESIDENT'S is that it never explains much to the audience. There's no cheap exposition. You have to work twice as much to follow the investigation and what exactly the characters are doing. It makes you feel like your part of the mystery. Names and places and numbers are being thrown around, and you have to sort everything out, like a jigsaw-puzzle, until a hazy picture starts forming in your head. Even if you are not completely aware of the events, you know you absolutely must have it all cleared out, because you are in the brink of a huge Revelation, an important, massive one. Pakula and screenwriter William Goldman make you feel like they know something that most people don't, a Secret. The filmmakers take pleasure in bringing you into the mystery, not just because they want to throw a particular political message at you, but because they know that we generally (well, at least I do) wish to be the Woodward and Bernsteins. Regular people, realizing that reality itself, as you percieve it, is breaking down, and that there was another reality under it all along. The giddy pleasure I get from watching it is one I often reach for in movies, and rarely recieve. It's the What If. It's the presentation of a particular recognizable enviroment, and then having the rug pulled under you. It is orgasmic. This is why I love (real) science-fiction, and PRESIDENT'S is more science-fiction than most sci-fi movies.

Admitedly, it's a lot easier for a movie create this feeling when it's mostly based on actual events. But there's no denying of the mastery of Pakula's silent, precise, brooding direction, Gordon Willis' dark, ominous photography, Goldman's "try and catch me fuckers" plotting and structure and great dialogue, the all-around fantastic, realistic acting, and sureal, hilariously brilliant, unbelievably friggin' tense scenes as the one where Woodward, after being told his life may be in danger by Deep Throat, arrives at Bernstein's apartment, and fearing planted bugs, turns up the volume on some classical music and procedes to have a conversation with his partner through a typewriter (this was so awesome. I mean, Jesus). I gave it an 87, and then upgraded it to a 92 after days of reflection, which safely puts it on "this is one of the greatest movies of all time ever thank you very much". Another upgrade I did lately was for Shane Carruth's sci-fi masterpiece PRIMER, which went from an (coincidently [or not]) 87 to a staggering (as Theo puts it) 96. I did not rewatch the film in these last few weeks, mind you, though I've seen it three times already. The upgrade occured because, after seeing PRESIDENT's and have it hanging over my mind for some time, I realized how closely they both resemble, and how significantly more amazing is PRIMER's achievement.

I'm not going to pretend that my realization of the similarity between the two movies is some kind of discovery. Shane Carruth basically said it himself in the interviews, something like this: "I watched ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN and wanted to make a movie like that". And who could blame him. But I don't remember reading any interesting comparisions between them, and though I will not be making said any extensive analysis on how they are similar, something struck me about them that made me understand a personal fetish in cinema (and sci-fi) for me, one that I already suspected. What it is is that PRIMER also takes the realistic approach that PRESIDENT'S took: they both have the same intense attention to detail and naturalism and recognizable, erratic, human behaviour; they are both shot in the same static, ominous, silent, ultimately frightening medium shot style of Pakula; they both feature screenplays where the plot and the content is thrown at you in an almost incomprehensible way, and make your mind race many times faster (which is very exciting, for those who care) to catch up; they both involve a couple of characters, regular guys, discovering a big Secret, that will change the way they look at the world, at Reality.

What makes PRIMER even more disgustingly awesome is that the Secret, in this case, is not political (something that affects a relatively small portion of our reality), but a Scientifical/Metaphysical one. The quest for Knowledge that Aaron and Abe go through leads not to resignations and arrests for political figures, but something so massive and otherwordly that it seems unbelievable. And the potency of the film comes from the fact that it makes you (or, at least me) believe it. Their discovery could easily be equated (in terms of importance) to the discovery of a proof that God exists. And only two Texan muffin-eating baseball-wathcing scientists know it (like Theo said, it's the juxtaposition of the mundane and the transcendental). And belive me, is this movie fucking transcendental. I mean holy fucking shit. There's a scene about 20 minutes in, after the realistic vibe has been stablished, in which the movie takes such a sudden, gigantic leap into the realm of sci-fi that I actually cried. It is when Aaron first sees Abe's clone through a binoculars, preceded by Abe urging him "not to scream, no matter what" and proceded by Aaron almost losing his voice, saying "Who was that, Abe?". The following stretch of the movie -- the next 10 or 15 minutes or so -- the sequence where Abe explains to Aaron in voice-over narration how did he travel through time (before, during and after) while Carruth plays the exact same thing the narration is explaining, but later on, with both Aaron and Abe... this sequence is so masterful that I do not even know how could people not consider this a major achievement in the Cinema (let alone by a first-time filmmaker, with a 7000 dollar budget). The people who do not consider this a major achievement in the Cinema must be fucking retarded.

I'm sorry, I don't mean that. Entirely.

So, there you go. Pakula's and Carruth's pictures are both firmly placed among my absolute favorites, bacause of some weird psychological background that cause me to enjoy movies that deal with metaphysics and the nature of reality in a mature and inteligent and realistic way (like in the great Philip K. Dick). I also love DONNIE DARKO* and TROPICAL MALADY for the exact same reasons -- to cite some recent movies I fell for -- and could easily write long, dull posts like this one about how unbefuckinglievably awesome they are (look for Jim Emerson's essay on DARKO that's somewhere on Ebert's site. It's genius). I'm not gonna, though (unless the fanbase of The Theo Blog requests it, har har). I think I've already made pretty clear what do I think is so amazing about these kinds of films that are willing to tackle the Fantastic with seriousness and to build it around a reality. It is, in a way, why I watch movies. It's not just to have filmmakers point to behaviour that I can see in the everyday and analyze it, but to have them also point outward, to what we may not even be aware of (master Antonioni also does this). It's not that movies (or art in general) will always reveal secrets and conspiracies, or that it's some form of escapism out of boring, mundane life, but just that fact that it's willing to go there already says a lot.

*How convienient, a movie about a teen who wants to delude himself that reality is not as boring as it really is by inventing in his head a weird surreal plot involving himself. He's also an atheist but makes himself believe he isn't one (because he can't handle the implications of being an atheist). He also wishes he'd not grow up, but go back to childhood, back when he believed in the mystical and the magical and in the easter bunny (geddit?). Anyway, Theo, 57? C'mooon...

PS: Mike D'Angelo, I know you did an Esquire review of PRIMER. It is not available for reading purposes. You have to buy it. I am not willing to pay dollars-converted-into-reais(our currency) to read your review. I do not feel it is worth that much. Although I do feel it may be worth something. So if you could e-mail it to me, I would be grateful. Though I wouldn't hold it against you if you didn't, since I am stupidly making this request in public. The Esquire team could be reading this. They could hack into our e-mails. They have the technology. They really do. I saw it in the movies. Our lives may be in danger. You should ask Deep Throat first. Put the red flag on your balcony, etc.

PPS: THE CONSTANT GARDNER (36). Brazillian filmmaker Fernando Meirelles, are you retarded. Thanks. Panayidettes do not watch THE CONSTANTLY STUPID/BORING GARDENER. Theo do not rate this movie over 45.

PPPS: There may be spelling errors in this post. Many of them, bad.

PPPPS: I would like to thank teenager baaab and baseball & politics asian guy Ryan Wu for the linking. And whoever else linked me (you know who you are, I am sure). Keep up the good work, etc.

PPPPPS: I do not even know what the fuck "PS" means. I think it's some latin shit. Like Post Scriptum. Or Post Scrotum.

PPPPPPS: I see my prediction failed on Theo's A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE grade. That is sad, but also ok. There are other predictions, other movies, etc.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

He Beat Me To It

Theo sez [Sorry for the lack of recent Films Seen; I got sidetracked - and now I'm off to a festival in Greece, so no more action on this site for at least a week. I wish life would stop getting in the way of movie-watching, to be frankly honest.]

Damn. Since Theo hadn't gone to the TIFF (that means Toronto International Freedom Fighters), I was hoping I would see most of the big 2005 movies before he did, in the São Paulo Festival. Damn. That would've placed me in a superior, more venerable position. Like if in the middle ages, a king would like order a pizza by phone every day and one of his guards would receive the pizza everyday from the delivery guy and he would bring it to the king, but this guard is really poor and he really likes pizza so he saves some money and after a few months the king orders a pizza and the guard dude also orders a pizza, but he orders his pizza from a cheaper place, and, like, ironically, the cheaper pizza place would deliver his pizza faster than the expensive haute cousine pízza place the king ordered from. So when the king's pizza arrived, the guard would already be eating his pizza and the king would be like "Go get my fucking pizza!" and the guard would be like "Hey, can't you see I'm fucking eating here? Wait a minute! I mean jesus. (pause) Oh boy, this tastes really good" and the king would be like "Ok, I'm chopping this guy's head off pronto" and the guard guy would be like "God, what a drama queen. Ok, I'll go get your pizza". You know?

Oh well.

Anyway, does anyone have a clue as to what film festival is going on in Greece this week? I heard of a Short Film Festival, but I couldn't find MALGAAT in the programme. There's also a Canberra film festival, but it's just a few greek movies, what would Theo want with that, etc. So I don't know. I frankly didn't do any extensive research, so if any Panayidette would be interested in investigating, be my guest.

I predict these are going to be Theo's ratings to the big 2005 movies:

THE HIDDENED - high 70's (on account that this movie was made by Micheal Haneke and he has loved virtually all of Haneke's recent movies and on account that this is chilling thriller and on account that the trailer for this movie is better than most movies I've seen this year (and I'm sure Theo agrees))

GAME OVER, KURT KOBAIN - low 60's (on account that he was mixed on EL PHANT and this looks slightly "more accomplished" than EL PHANT)

THE CHILD OF THE DARDENNE - high 70's (on account that Theo flips over backwards for any Dardenne bros movie -- now I just pictured Theo flipping over backwards while waiting in line to get a ticket for this movie, and the guy next to him in line thinking "this is some fucked up greek dude, jesus". That would be really funny.)

THE WAYDOWNTOWN CLOUD - low 70's (on account that Theo's recent tryptich (sp?) of Tsai shows that he is slowly coming to terms with the fact that this filmmaker is so awesome. Also, Mike Del Anglo said this is Tsai's best movie)

HOMOSSEXUAL COWBOYS BY ANG LEE - high 60's (on account that this has Donnie Darko having sex with cowboys and Heatcliff Ledger, which is something Theo always thought would be interesting to see)

ARAGORN'S VIOLENT HISTORY - low or mid 70's (yeah, sue me) (on account that everybody loves this movie)

LAY MAN'S DEARTH (THE LARS VON TRIER MOVIE) - either high 50's or low 60's (on account that this is like Dogville but inferior. Also, Theo's the Cinephile Nigger)

THE PRESIDENT LIKES TO BANG - mid 60's (on account that Theo does not usually love asian movies (because of his hidden anti-asian agenda (yes, I did not forget that 65 for SEVEN SAMURAI, bud)))

TIME TIMES THREE - high 50's ("One more time!", said Daft Punk, some years ago)

REGULAR LOVERS (is there any way to make this title funny? I'll leave that to you) - either low or mid 70's (on account that I don't have much info on this movie, but a lot of folks seemed to like it, like Sicinski gave it a 9 and stuff, so who knows)

EVIL ALIENS - mid 90's (this is obvious, etc)

If I get at least five of these right, I'll celebrate by buying myself a bottle of non-cheap wine and inviting my friends over for a Coen Brothers marathon.

Of course, those predictions of Theo's grades don't have much to do with my predictions of my grades (for example, THE WAY-TO-GO CLOUD would certainly be a high 70's-low 80's for me, as it will obviously rock, and I'm becoming a Tsai fanboy).

Anyway, good luck with the festival, Theo. You better come back with one of those anecdotes.

PS: What's so great about ACE IN THE HOLE? I'm on the J. Hoberman/Phil Hall side.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

How Wrong Have I Been

While the TIFF is going on in Canada...

Two boring reviews.

It’s watchable, I guess. The best thing about it is how Kore-eda gets the feel of the small apartment exactly right, specially considering the child’s-POV angle. It feels a little cramped, with tight frames filled with details, characters shot under chairs, in doorways and hallways, everything a little zoomed-in. It’s simultaneously relaxing and claustrophobic, exactly as a “caged” child would feel like in that situation. It also has the TO BE AND TO HAVE feel for childhood: curious about them, realistic (almost like a documentary, really) and filled with details (many of which I can’t remember now because I don’t usually take notes; I better start taking those goddamn notes in my opinion) – and of course, like that movie, also a little precious and cutesy.

The theme actually resonated with me quite a lot, even though it’s treated in haphazard way: it’s about the Burden of Responsibility. The characters have to make choices between personal enjoyment and taking care of others – the mother chooses her lover and neglects the kids, and shit happens; the older brother Akira chooses playing videogame with his loser friends and shit happens (and other echoes throughout, like the “father” who doesn’t accept that Yuki is his daughter, and says he’s stuck in “credit card hell” because his girlfriend spent too much). There’s a moving shot (IMO) of the sister sitting at the table on the foreground, under yellow light, looking at unpaid bills, while her brother and his friends play Playstation and make a mess out of the house. It made me feel bad for all the (many, usual) times I chose to ignore my own responsibilities – and it also reminded me how it can feel so good (for a limited time) to do that, shown when the older brother takes his brothers out of the house, spends all his money on food and toys, and plays all day long in the park.

This also makes it clear how the movie doesn’t really work very well: the burden and the sense of freedom are felt, but only in a minor way -- unlike in PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE, when Barry Egan spends the entire first half dealing with extreme anxiety and oppression, and then suddenly takes the orgasmic trip to Hawaii. It’s too predictable and too low key and too long overall. Theo says: “Personally, I had a strange reaction to NOBODY KNOWS: after about an hour I started to get fidgety - even a little drowsy - and wondered if I'd last the course; after about 90 minutes, though, I'd fully adjusted to the rhythm, accepted the situation was going nowhere, and could easily have watched it toddle on for another hour.” This is not just your reaction bud, this seems to be the actual movie’s doing; it does get a little annoying and draggy by the half way mark, but about 30 minutes later and things start moving more smoothly and pleasantly (and then, at least for me, it went back to draggy in the last 15 minutes or so).

Most of the last third, I kept wondering how exactly it would end. When the high school girl marks her presence in the narrative, I thought it would resolve with her doing something about the situation (becoming a new Mother for them, taking the Responsibility), but by the end she actually becomes a “new older sister”, just tagging along for the ride. The death scene is useless, the burial in the airport is kind of beautiful, and that tear-jerking song near the end was fucking awful. I mean jesus.

There are many ways to start this review; none of them will make me look good. As much as I wish I could’ve used “If you turn in the right corner in Sin City you can find just about anything. Anything… that sucks ASS” as a starter, I can’t, because this isn’t bad at all. I quite liked, in fact, and suspect I might like this even more on second viewing. Even my thoughts about this being completely shallow and superficial were wrong, as there’s a coherent theme working under the narrative, pulling everything together – even though the theme itself isn’t of much use. At first I thought the Castration Obsession this movie had was just some weird personal issue for Frank Miller (hey Frank Miller are you castrated? Thanks), but there was also talk of “making yourself worth”, and the “quest for Justice” and “warrior women and gladiators” it all tied down to Being a Man, fear of emasculation, some kind of code of honor where you only shoot honest people unless you really have to, and when the dude is bad, killing him is just not enough, you have to “go to work on him first” (and specially “every nice looking blonde deserves a revenge”).

Maybe I’m way off, but during that scene where Clive Owen watches as the hookers prepare to kill Benicio del Toro, he starts having second thoughts about actually killing the guy (that he was so sure about killing a few minutes earlier), and he even says stuff like “he never killed anyone, this is not right” and “something’s wrong about this” and I suspect these are his fears of emasculation coming to the surface; he wishes *he* was killing the guy and doing the revenge, being the hero and the Man, saving the blonde – but he has to stand around and watch someone else (women!) do the work. He only comes to terms with this in the end of this story, when the hookers come to the revenge and he acknowledges them as Warrior Women, Valkyries. In this same story, there’s also a scene where Clive’s character wonders whether he’ll have to kill a cop or not, and whether that would be right (which kind of gives weight to the rest of the random killings).

Random cool stuff: the Elijah Wood supposedly-creepy character didn’t seem all that creepy (maybe because I was already expecting creepiness), but the first appearances of the Yellow Bastard were menacing, and this last Bruce Willis story was my actual favorite: I kept hoping Bruce and his daughter/lover/protégé (the smoking hot) Jessica Alba would turn out all right (the only characters I really cared about). Any sign of anything yellow in the frame would get on my nerves. And Clive Owen’s introduction – “Hi, I’m Britanny Murphy’s boyfriend and I’m out of my mind” – got my blood going the way the rest of this movie should have. And Marv’s execution (“I haven’t got all night”). And Nicky Katt with an arrow through his body, making jokes about it (that *was* Nicky Katt, wasn’t it?). And many of the noir-ish, shadowy, beautifully composed shots. And lots of other stuff I don’t remember right now because I don’t take notes (gotta take those fucking notes in my opinion).

Still, I wish I could’ve been more enthusiastic about this, but I watched most of it in a detached way, just admiring all the striking photography and fast rhythm and hammy, cheesy acting (in a good way), with only the occasional burst of excitement. Needed more action scenes, maybe; the car crashes and gun shots and killing were too short, too cartoony. Maybe it was just that there was hardly any emotional connection (that’s why only the Bruce Willis bit worked for me fully). Maybe it was the constant narration that got annoying (like waves bumping on a rocky shore can get annoying if you’re sitting on top of one of those rocks and the water’s spraying on your face and your eyes until you develop some kind of facial burn). Also, the Gilmore Girl, the one that dies in the end: hot stuff. And I have no idea what Theo means by this: “even more inspiring than PRIMER in demystifying the filmmaking process”. Nothing in THE SIN OF A CITY is half as inspiring as in THE PRIMER, much less the Demystification of the Filmmaking Process (what the fuck).

Also, some second viewings:

BREATHLESS (Godard) (77), up from a 75.

GHOST WORLD (Zwigoff) (84), up from a 72. (this is one of the most beautiful and poignant and depressing films ever made, not just about teens)

Theo-Related Quote of the Day
"Theo's IRMA VEP Review is so good I'm thinking of making it into a movie."
- Khansc