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A feast in a time of plague.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Just time enough for a brief post today pointing out that there's apparently a Courtney Crumrin movie in the works. Creator Ted Naifeh's book is a nicely drawn and smartly characterized work for kids that is well worth a look for children of all ages. And a movie suits me right fine.

I winder if Polly and the Pirates is as good...

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The live action film adapted from the manga Nana appears to be doing quite well in Japan.

Fangoria has the lineup for the upcoming LA Screamfest. Looks pretty solid with lots of ghost stories--I'm sort of intrigued by the Filipino one, myself.

I'm ashamed to say that I can't remember where I first saw this site referred to on the web, but regardless of that the Internet Movie Cars database is pretty cool.

10000 Bullets reviews the NoShame Films disk of the excellently titled Your Vice is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key.

Have I mentioned lately you can never have too much Edwige Fenech?

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Now here's a hot Christie's auction that's worth heading out for: "300 lurid film posters". Someone buy me a present for Xmas, OK?

Videogaming update: this area of entertainment has suffered almost as badly for me lately as movie watching, but with the next Zelda game pushed to 2006, I've picked up The Wind Waker again over the last couple days just for fun. (I may get bored with all the sailing again right quick, though). As is usual in the game industry the lead up to Christmas will feature piles and piles of great new stuff to tempt me back into the console world. The two I now most await are Okami and the King Kong game by Michel Ancel. You ought to take a look at what's happening at the Tokyo game show as well this weekend, since there's lots of news coming out of there. I don't usually get all ga-ga over screenshots, but I'll admit that this batch from the Xbox 360 game Kameo: Elements of Power is pretty damned jawdropping. Then again, Rare has been working on this game for about six years, it seems, so it ought to look all pretty.

As noted above (and below), I'm still in a bit of a funk when it comes to movies--I've only seen two in September, and one of those was a Cathy Menard (not necessarily safe for work) vehicle, so that hardly counts. Still, there's some upcoming DVD releases in the next few months that I am eagerly anticipating, like the Shaw Brothers' Angry Guest (with Chang Cheh as a bad guy!) and Shaolin Intruders, the Fox Film Noir Collection, the Jodie Foster TV movie The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane, Norifumi Suzuki's Sex & Fury and Teruo Ishii's Female Yakuza Tale and a Special Edition one of the Westerns I've been waiting forever for, Seven Men From Now. If all this--and the things coming out of TIFF-- doesn't get me back into a filmwatching mood, then it's all over. And I didn't even mention Night of the Lepus, the single most frightening lagomorph film of all time.

Have you heard about the animation flick Mind Game by Masaaki Yuasa? I may have mentioned it in months past, but it is worth bringing up again. Can't wait for this one.

While I'm sure you're already keeping an eye on Dano's excellent coverage of the Toronto Film Festival, I hope you're also scoping out Twitch's updates as well. There's some good looking stuff noted over there, such as Linda Linda Linda (with Bae Doo Na!), Michael Haneke's brilliant sounding Cache, Citizen Dog (the latest from Wisit Sasanatieng, director of the highly recommended Tears of a Black Tiger), the Donnie Yen/Sammo Hung outing Sha Po Lang, Isolation, the French flick Banlieue 13, a wild new Tsai Ming-liang film, Sympathy for Lady Vengeance and the super-anticipated-by-me Evil Aliens. I'm not going to look at what appears to be a bad review for Tsui Hark's Seven Swords though; I would just prefer to put my hands over my ears shouting "La La La La La" for now....

C'mon, this looks good...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Reading: After my recent perusal of David Mitchell I decided to pick up Thornton Wilder's Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Bridge of San Luis Rey. Mitchell likes this book so much that one of the recurring characters in his associative novels is a detective named Luisa Rey. Wilder's novel is similar to Mitchell's work in that involves the seperate stories of five people who plunge into a crevass when the ancient Incan bridge that they're crossing snaps and sends them into the abyss; the fateful incident that ties their tales together is a device slightly akin to those used by Mitchell to weave together the disparate narratives that run throughout his novels--though he tends to add dimensions of space and time more fitted towards today's global environment. Also cool is that the edition that I got from the library is an older Grosset & Dunlap edition with a great 1920's typeface and cool illustrations by Amy Drevenstedt.

The nonfiction category these days is still all full of architecture books of all sorts. Kengo Kuma: Selected Works details some buildings by the Japanese Pritzker Prize winner who claims a heavy Bruno Taut influence. I especially like his Bamboo House and the museum he created for the work of Hiroshige Ando. (He has a great design for the Nam June Paik Museum as well, but I have no idea if the Kirsten Schemel design that won a 2003 competition is actually what they're going to build or if Kuma's 2004 design is the real deal.) Also out of the Design Library are The Architecture of John Lautner a treatise on the buildings of that great architect and The Green House: New Directions in Sustainable Architecture a compendium of cool new eco friendly designs. Especially of note from here are the Walla Womba House and the Sea Train House by The Office of Mobile Design.

Other media: my movie slump continues, though I may go out to see 2046 this week and I'll probably rent the DVD for Last Frontier if I can find it around. I'm also waiting for a couple new CD's (Celebration Castle by the Ponys and Learn to Hate the Feelers) and I need to get to my local comics emporium this week and pick up some new books. Likely purchases there include Rocketo, Lost Dogs, the new Jordan Crane book, Pure Trance by Junko Mizuno, Sexy Voice & Robo, Or Else #3 and maybe Fantagraphics' new release of strips by Hank Ketcham. I need more money.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Yu Aoi (who was excellent in All About Lily Chou Chou) will apparently be playing Hagumi Hanamoto in the live action version of Chika Umino's Honey and Clover shoujo manga. (Thanks to Irresponsible Pictures for pointing this out).

Saturday, September 03, 2005

From the Recommendations Department: I've already written about David Mitchell's truly excellent Cloud Atlas, but now I'm reading his debut novel Ghostwritten, and it's almost as good. This guy is surely my favorite writer that I've found of late.

On the comics front, I just have to point out a new item from Top Shelf that I've also alluded to before that I just got finished with. It's Aaron Renier's Spiral Bound, the fantastic adventures of Turnip the elephant and all his animal pals. Character driven and wonderfully illustrated (here's some samples of his style, if you're curious), this is a kid's comic that hopefully will find a large audience because it's heartfelt and fun and engaging and, well, damnably honest. It's a great debut, so if you've got an eleven or twelve year old son or daughter or niece or nephew you ought to buy two--one for the brat and one for yourself. You can thank me later. Now if I only knew where to buy a Kodiak and Calico CD...

Shut up and buy it


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