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

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.


Blogger Khansc said...

Glauber was there, and you probably didn't see him. Anyway, he loved History of Violence. And, btw, no, i won't Come And See (90) the SP Fuck Fest. Hope all of you fuckers are enjoying and doing the right things and all. I'm a little better, maybe i'll be able to drink again sometime soon. I'm eating all kinds of coloured vegetables you can imagine. Some guys are using LSD as fertilizer. Tea is good too.

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Anonymous Vadim said...

So I guess you haven't heard that Cronenberg never read the source comic for History Of Violence, and also that apparently the movie has very little relation to it.

Re the D. Warhols: Welcome To The Monkey House is a wildly entertaining synth-pop album. Avoid the new one; it's utter shit.

Wouldn't see why you'd say they're decadent hipsters: it's all about the squalor and exhaustion and cramped spaces. It's my indie-rock background, again.

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