Archive for the ‘film’ Category
Behold the duck
It does not cluck
A cluck it lacks
I have spent much of today failing to write anything useful about Galileo’s Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina so I thought I’d write something here, just to reassure myself I am still capable of stringing the odd sentence together.
I bought a new razor recently, because I couldn’t find new blades for my old one. I succumbed to the mighty advertising clout of Gillette and bought a FUSION! razor. If you live under a rock, I’ll remind you that the FUSION! line of razors is advertised by Thierry Henry, Roger Federer and Tiger Woods. I don’t know which sportsman’s total lack of personality drew me to their product. All I know is that I now command the comfort of five blades AND the precision of one. Fear me. For I have experienced the miracle of FUSION!
Adam and Joe were talking about new holidays today on their BBC 6music radio show thinger. It was rather good and stuff. I’ll link to the podcast when it shows up (around 6 tomorrow, apparently). I didn’t text in any of the genius ideas I have had in the past. But theirs were specifically new days for sending cards on. Apparently they got the idea off the Apprentice. But I haven’t seen any of it this year. Or any year, for that matter.
I watched Any Given Sunday yesterday, because I’d picked it up at Borders for £2.99. Bargain! Anyway. Yes it was worth every penny of my three pounds. I also picked up The Talented Mr Ripley, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and… some other film. All going for a song. Marvelous.
I watched Dog Soldiers this evening. The line “There is no spoon” cracked me up. I only bought the film because it was dirt cheap and I happened to know that they filmed quite a lot of it in Luxembourg. As was An American Werewolf in Paris. I think it’s because they have real werewolves up near Esch that are cheaper to hire than all the crazy effects they’d need to put a human in a wolf suit. Ginger Snaps wasn’t filmed in Luxembourg. But then… did you see that werewolf effect? That’s what happens when you don’t go for the real thing. But yeah. Werewolves, Vampires, Trolls, Goblins… Luxembourg has real life magical folk-lore creatures for hire. They only didn’t film Lord of the Rings there because the cast didn’t actually all fit in the country at the same time.
Anyway, I digress. Dog Soldiers was diverting enough. Seeing Kevin McKidd talking all Scottish was a bit weird, since I’d normally associate him with Lucius Vorenus from that Rome show on BBC a while ago.
Hmm. The above paragraphs make it look like I’m some kind of werewolf film expert. I’m not. I’ve only seen Ginger Snaps and Dog Soldiers. Well, I’ve seen the sequels to Ginger Snaps, I think. But I might have been asleep and/or drunk at the time. Anyway. They didn’t make a big impression on me. But I haven’t actually seen An American Werewolf in Paris. I just know it was filmed near where someone I know used to live.
IMDb tells me that they’re making a sequel to Dog Soldiers. Good gravy, I bet it’s going to be terrible. Oh well. On the subject of terrible films: don’t watch Ginger Snaps. I don’t know why I ever agreed to it. It’s awful.
I just found out that the BBC did indeed make a TV miniseries of Titus Groan and Gormenghast and that Christopher Lee did indeed play the part of Flay. Richard Griffiths was Swelter. Cora Groan was played by Zoe Wannamaker. Stephen Fry was also in it, but playing a part I haven’t come across and wikipedia has nothing to say on the subject.
The Edward whose name I couldn’t remember is Edward Furlong.
Of course, it’s not just books you can do this to. But books are good because you don’t have a visual image of your character imposed upon you. So it is easier to find actors who fit. With cartoons or videogames or whatever, you are constrained by the person looking at least a bit like the character… Remaking films with new actors is another good source of idle speculation. “If I were remaking Bridge on the River Kwai, who would I have play Saito?” for example. (Beat Takeshi, obviously.)
One thing we did in our house last year was discuss who we would cast as whom if certain things were made into films: Brendan Fraser was made to play Peter Perfect from Wacky Racers. And our house, being our house, always had a role for Sam Leeroy Jackson. So, I’ve been reading Titus Groan recently, and I’ve been thinking about who I would cast.
- The obvious choice for Fuschia would be Addams family-era Christina Ricci.
- Johnny Vegas as Swelter would make me laugh.
- Sepulchrave, Flay and Sourdust are all too alike in my mind to cast indiviually, but you could choose from a pool of Christopher Lee, Vincent Price (circa Edward Scissorhands), Ian McKellen…
- Prunesquallor should be played by Mark Heap like a less neurotic, more annoying version of Alan Statham from Green Wing
- I wonder if Rupert Grint could pull off a convincing Steerpike. Or maybe Edward thingy from American History X and Terminator 2.
It’s an interesting way to amuse oneself. If you share my film-geekery and my book-nerdage. Of course, the whole thing is spoiled if the book has been made into a film. You can’t really talk about casting for Harry Potter characters or Lord of the Rings chaps without having the actual choices impinge upon your discussion.
I’m going to think about this with other books…
I have spent the last few days being kicked repeatedly in the nuts by a really bad cold. Figuratively. I’ve missed a few lectures which will take some catching up on… And my plan to have one of my essays pretty much written up has been put on the back burner. But today thanks to Beechams (which I think is made out of magic) or my partial convalescence, I managed to plan out my essay about Robot Scientists. It’s going to be awesome. I hope I can write something in the next week and get some feedback. I also have to catch up on a lot of reading and whatnot.
Fun fact: seventeen of the twenty-nine delegates at the fifth Solvay conference were, or later became Nobel prize winners… Yikes.
I managed to get as far as Boots to buy some paracetamol and ibuprofen and (for reasons unrelated to my illness) mouthwash and shower gel. On the way past Borders I popped in and snapped up two seasons of Red Dwarf for £7 each! So this week I have spent most of my time coughing my lungs up, feeling sorry for myself and watching Red Dwarf on DVD. But now I don’t have any more episodes to watch. Thankfully I have also got over the worst of my cold as well.
I watched Run Fat Boy Run, which is quite funny. Cheesy in the extreme, but just about silly enough that it doesn’t turn into a soppy chick-flick. It did kind of make me want to go and watch Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz, though. In fact I might watch Hot Fuzz this evening… I do like Stephen Merchant’s cameos. In RFBR, in HF and in Green Wing. He went to Warwick, don’t you know…
My essays have been handed in now and I’m at a bit of a loose end. Nothing much to do. Well, all sorts of things I should do, like tidy up my room and catch up with the reading for my new courses, return my the library book Everest I have built on my desk and so on. But I’m enjoying not doing much a bit too much to start any of that nonsense.
I watched Bobby today. Quite a good film. Incredible cast… Not much else to say about it really…
Crikey. Right after I write about families of awesome people I discover quite how amazing the Coppola family tree is… I knew Francis Ford Coppola was related to Sofia and to Nicholas Cage, but I didn’t realise that Jason Schwartzman is also part of the clan. And they are one of two families to have 3 generations of academy award winners. (No idea who the other family is…) So that’s pretty cool. And Roman Coppola is credited as writer for The Darjeeling Limited! (A film I really want to see!) I thought all that was pretty cool.
I’m halfway through reading this. Interesting stuff about the record industry and music piracy and so on. But I should really get back to reading this. Which isn’t as intersting. But possibly more relevant for my putative essay about Probability in Quantum Mechanics…
- Erasmus and Charles Darwin
- Thomas and Aldous Huxley
- Max Born and Olivia Newton-John
This trinity of grandparent/grandchild relations is unimpeachable proof that clever people have clever grandchildren. And there’s no shortage of evidence that rock legends have crap children; Peaches Geldof, Kelly Osbourne… Evidence that great people do not beget great children.
But what of Hugh Everett who was the father of the Many Worlds interpretation of Quantum Mechanics? Father to Mark Oliver Everett, the frontman of the Eels. An anomaly perhaps? A beautiful freak,if you’ll excuse the muso-pun.
Just watched Smokin Aces. It’s not very good. Entertaining enough I suppose. But pretty much everyone dies. And that doesn’t really spoil the story or anything, because the famous faces start dropping like flies pretty early on… Jason Bateman as a pathetic lawyer stole the show. Well, the two scenes he is in, at least.
Saw Mr Scruff on Thursday. Very good. Ug was a highlight for me. Although I did find myself enjoying ‘lovecats’ as well. Wasn’t expecting to hear any Cure that night… Had some rather tasty mint and chilli tea at the gig. An odd but generally enjoyable experience. Mr Scruff is from Stockport. That makes him the second best thing to come out of Stockport. After the Hat Museum, obviously.
Also saw some other band who were similar to the arctic monkeys. They were friends at school or somesuch. Highlight was Will almost stealing someone’s pig mask. But he gave it back.
I started writing a piece for the student paper about how crap celebrity gardeners are. But it was rubbish so I’ve put it on the back-burner for now. I would like to get into doing more stuff for the paper, the rather pompously entitled “Epigram.”
This is what I have to read for my Philosophy of Physics course. I’m finding it quite hard to extract the philosophy from it so far. I’m only about half way through though… Maybe all the philosophically relevant stuff is at the end? Maybe?
Despite the title of my course (Philosophy and History of Science) there seems to be very little in the way of history this term. The phil. physics course is all about quantum theory and a wee bit of relativity. No classical philosophy of science at all. The phil. maths course is about contemporary issues in the philosophy of mathematics… I’m a little disappointed, but oh well. I’m sure I can read around the subject if I am interested in a particular part of the history.
I’ve decided to try and write my essays in LaTeX where appropriate. This does mean relearning how to write in LaTeX and making sure I have all the relevant programs and whatnot installed. But I’m a geek, so I’ll enjoy that kind of thing…
I bought 300 and Zodiac on DVD a couple of days ago. I watched 300 and thought it was stylishly devoid of substance. It also fails to explain the point of the battle until the very end. They were slowing up the Persians to allow the “Greek” forces to amass further down for the fight that stopped the advance of Xerxes. If that isn’t explained the whole sacrifice at Thermopylae has no meaning. Gates of Fire does a much better job of making you appreciate the battle and feels a lot more authentic. I put “Greek” in inverted commas because there was no such thing as Greece as a political or cultural entity at the time.
I also watched Brick. Once you get used to how they speak and begin actually picking up meaning in the dialogue, I thought this was a pretty good film. I will have to watch it again at some stage. My favourite line was “I’ll see you at the parents’ conference” delivered as if it was straight out of some gritty film noir. I don’t think it was supposed to be that funny…
Good lord, the amazon.co.uk website is horrifically slow at the moment. I wonder if that is due to Resnet or some other thing. I was going to link to Gates of Fire, but it’s so damn slow I can’t be bothered waiting. That’s Gates of Fire by Stephen Pressfield. Or is it Steven?