Category Archives: Movies, Music & TV

Pure nonsense

Just listening to Digitally Imported:

This track is the hottest thing to come out of Russia since the Moscow heat wave!

I know what I’m doing here is borderline Twitter-quality, but I found that line hilarious 😀

Spoilers (none contained)

Okay, this isn’t going to be some revolutionary insight. More the domain of stating the obvious. But still.

If you know me, you probably know that The Matrix is my favourite movie. Like, ever. I can’t imagine ever liking a movie more. I love it for so many different things and on so many different levels, that it would take an entry of its own to point them out. When Alqua & Colt were here and the conversation crossed The Matrix, I surprised them by pointing out a little design detail about the movie which they didn’t notice before – and that’s the thing, you don’t notice it (unless you’ve seen it as often as I did), but it all adds up to a whole. Oh my. I feel the urge to watch it again just from writing about it.

Oh, and don’t ask me which of the three I mean. There was only one. Then there was some Matrix-themed ad-lib fan fiction which was accidentally released as full feature movies. Let’s not talk about them. Or, let’s, when I finally remember to post that translation (from German original) I made of an excellent recension of the “trilogy”, which really put up the three movies (no-no, there was only one!) against each other. I already spent two paragraphs talking about The Matrix when it totally wasn’t what I intended to talk about. Happens every time. But now you have an idea of the passion I feel for that film.

You may also know, that roughly from 2000 to 2008 I was a very avid filmgoer (apparently, that’s indeed a word). Almost every Saturday night I’d be sitting in a cinema with a friend, watching some new movie. Or, in some very rare cases, watching a movie we’d already seen, again. Yeah, we were that crazy. Now don’t mistake me for some French-arts-“the black lamp shade in the background symbolizes concealed feelings” type. I was, and am, always happy to ride the blockbuster-/entertainment-train. Like most people, in fact (that’s why they’re called blockbusters, doh) – most people just won’t admit it. If the movie turned out to be crap, all the better, we’d rip it apart sitting at Burger King until 3AM. If it was great, we’d … basically do the same, only with a positive connotation. Or rip apart another one, that failed to be as great. You get the picture.

There was one thing I came to hate during that time, and that is movie trailers. You see, we’re slowly edging closer to the topic. I was fine with teasers – a few disconnected frames from the upcoming film followed by a release date to, basically, just notify you, that something is coming up. Great. But then the release date would come closer and we’d get into the domain of trailers. And not just the sort that gets shown on TV, but those full fledged 2-3 minutes long (sometimes even longer…) previews, which could technically rather serve as a review. And as a regular filmgoer, you’d have to watch them over and over again, especially in the last few weeks/months before the advertised work would hit the theatres.

It’s the nature of the medium trailer, that you have to pick the best stuff from what you’re advertising. You want to lure, and you lure with cake, not with bread. So, essentially, by the time you’d pay for the ticket, you’d have seen all the best scenes and heard all the best jokes several times already. All that’d be left for the actual movie, was putting them into the right order and filling the gaps with .. the stuff they thought themselves wasn’t really that hot. And then the actual plot. See, pretty much every plot, no matter how intricate, can be summarized in 2-3 minutes. Yes, even Lord of the Rings, if you try really hard. And that’s what trailers do. They try really hard. You’d know who the good guys are, who the bad guys are, what they’re conflicting about, what the problem to solve is. Of course, the resolution would be left out (usually). But that doesn’t really make things better. The resolution rarely is the gem of the plot. The interesting part is the problem itself, the setting, the setup, the conflict, the history, the riddles and the hurdles. All things trailers happily give away to wet your mouth. The resolution mostly boils down to “hero wins”, and although he might do that in an original, clever and spectacular way, or sometimes not even win at all, this is not what drives the movie. We don’t sit down for two hours for the sake of the last five minutes. We want to enjoy the entire ride.

And now the two, so far apparently disconnected topics discussed here join together. The Matrix (1999) was the movie that started off my passion. It is what made me into a filmgoer in the first place. Which means, I wasn’t going to cinemas before. Which means I haven’t seen any trailers. All I saw was a TV teaser in which Neo famously dodges a bullet followed by “What is the Matrix?”. When I first sat down in my cinema chair to watch it, I actually didn’t know what the Matrix is! Every line of dialogue, every action scene, every special effect were provoking a “whoa, that was AWESOME!” response in my brain.

Today I visited YouTube and it recommended me to watch The Matrix Trailer. And I did (and instantly desired to see the movie itself again). While being who I am I’ll of course point out, that The Matrix contained so much awesomeness, that there is still a metric ton left unshown, I can’t but wonder if I’d liked it as much as I did, had I been bombarded with that trailer beforehand.

Nerdrage – will contain profanity

So, now the media is discussing, whether Michael Jackson’s children should or should not have attended his funeral (considering their young age and his always having been highly protective of them), should or should not his daughter have spoken, why they did it, who, what, where and so on. And by “media” I mean mostly people who earn their living as “high society experts”, i.e. detractors and gossipers who have never accomplished anything on their own. These people, who never were good at anything but turning other people’s dirty underwear, are now in the underwear of Michael Jackson’s children. Yes, I am making this sound doubly reprobate on purpose.

Children. Kids. As in, sons and daughter. Sons and daughter of a father. A father who died two weeks ago. Do you even know what that means? Do you retarded media-morons even know how much that hurts? At least when you’re still human, rather than a social atrocity making a living and cheap fame off sniffing other people’s farts? Children, for crying out loud! A little boy who saw his father die while they were playing and thought he’s just acting at first. This is, what, the single most terrifying, terrible, painful, shocking, awful thing that can possibly happen to a human being (again, referring to human beings here) in their entire life? Okay, probably second to having it the other way round and losing a child that way (hey everyone, let’s make fun of John Travolta! His son died! Isn’t that hilarious? Idiots). But a close second. By a wide margin ahead of the third, which would probably be the loss of a spouse, but that’s already debatable.

And now you even dare talking about them? Gossiping about them? Sullying their names with your dirty, worthless mouths? I would appeal to your respect and conscience, but you obviously do not possess either. I would call to dignity and humanity, but you probably don’t even know what that means. You – all the countless society reports and reporters, star magazines and gossip channels, as well as what became of most newscasts – have been pushing the borders of the tolerable for years now. I can’t tell you exactly when you overstepped it, but right now, you’re clearly beyond it, by far and wide. Just shut up. Shut the fuck up and go to hell. And leave the children alone!

Germany’s Next Flopmodel

It’s probably pretty safe to assume, that most countries have their ‘s Next Topmodel show, so, not much explanation of the principle is needed. Basically, it’s a casting show, where every girl, who has ever been told by a dude who wanted to get in her pants that she’s model-material, can apply (and they apply in thousands, every year) to be judged by a jury, which consists of a leading supermodel of that country (the US-original is led by Tyra Banks, the German version by Heidi Klum) and a few others who no one ever heard of, but are big in model business … probably.

Getting to the point. The final 10 candidates, who get into the actual training- and elimination-shows, will tell you two things. All of them. It’s like the casting-version of “world peace”. Mind you, the punch line is in the concurrence of the two:

  1. They have always dreamed of becoming a model.
  2. They never, or hardly ever, wear high heel shoes.

That’s quite amazing. That would be, kind of, like … if I would show up to a basketball training camp and declare, that I always dreamed of becoming an NBA-pro, but so far never bothered to learn how to dribble.
Or if someone would say they’ve always been dreaming of becoming a singer, but cannot even read music. Oh wait. There’s the Idol-shows, where exactly this happens. Never mind!

But, hey, let’s not be too surprised. After all, this is exactly what all these shows offer and promise: fame, without that tedious talent-and-labour business.

Ilya Gringolts

If he’s in town, and you’re into classic – especially violin – music, go out and get a ticket. Guy got skill. Guy got lots of skill.

Not posting any links, because they’d just be search results, and you, dear reader, certainly can acquire them just as good as me. (The first letter of his first name is a capital “i”, the second a non-capital “L”, just in case the font appears deceiving)

Quickie

There are movies you like for the actors who were in it. And then there are actors you like for a movie they were in.