Source: Charlie Youle


Live And Let Try




The Ghost Writer

Source: Nevver


Quiet, I Am Sleeping

Source: Personal Collection





Your Interiors Last

Source: Bill Brandt


Your Exteriors Travel

Source: Thomas Voorn


Un Duex Trois Du Miroir Noir

Source: Personal Collection


Going There





Keep The Car Running



source: The Selby


Two More

Firstly, a heads-up that I'm going to make some major changes around here. Slowly contemplating things, as I am wont to do, and I'll get around to it.

Secondly (and thirdly), things that defy contemplation- the last of the summer movies.

I've got to say that District 9 was the second in two refreshing, heartening trips to the cinema (see previous post). Characters I cared about (none of the
m human, mind you- protagonist Wikus Van De Merwe has to be the biggest fuckup in a hero's shoes since John Locke of Lost), and therefore spent the film at the edge of my seat as their long-shot plans for escape went realistically awry again and again. I'm half-praying they don't sequalize this, but who am I kidding. We need more original concepts like this- look how they take hold of audiences, Hollywood, and stop banking on "known properties"...

...Or worse yet, continually fucking them up. I mean, what is there to fuck up about G.I. Joe? And before you roll out your "what did you expect?", let me explain.
G.I. Joe, in its odd way, is the reason I write, and the reason I went into acting. For years (maybe ages 9-12?) I concocted an elaborate, continuing storyline for my vast collection of toys and vehicles, a storyline for which I kept notes and taught myself things about plotting that I still use today (I didn't once see the cartoon, so the characterizations also became my own). Whenever I'm working on a script, there isn't a mental moment that goes by that I don't recall how I mentally bookmarked some action taken by Duke, or Flint, or Destro, as I played with those toys, and stored it away until the consequences of that action were to be dealt with in the storyline. And some serious stuff went down in my 11-year-old battlefield/bedroom: love, hate, betrayal, death, resurrection- so surely Hollywood could do better than an 11-year-old, right? I just had to go and find out.

Aaannnd, the answer was no. Sort of. The goofy nonsense that passed for plot in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra incorporated some stuff that, if you can believe this, overthought the concept: Cobra Commander and Duke being brothers, or whatever the fuck they were, and however that relationship worked. And the opposite: the playing down/simplification of Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow's backstory, which was brilliantly done in the Marvel Comic of the 1980's (and I do mean brilliantly; that's not just emptyheaded trash culture fanboy flare; it was a magnificent and monumental series). Otherwise, boom-boom-pow, it was just like chucking plastic around the sand pit back in the glory days.

But this might stand as the utlimate example of a baffling line of thinking when it comes to making films about these pre-existing properties: why take iconic, memorable designs and slap black leather on them?????? Jesus, Murphy, I mean, it's even a good business decision to stick with some known elements; Transformers pulled a masterstroke by keeping some of the cartoon voices on the payroll, yet G.I. Joe took distinct design like this:

and 're-imagined' it as this:

Is this meant to be playing to world markets that didn't have the action figures/cartoon in their lives? Becuase that still doesn't make sense. I'm convinced they could have added $30-50 million to their box office if they'd reproduced some of the remarkable designs Hasbro came up with 25 years ago. I mean, Snake-Eyes, who is famously mute, had a mouth on his costume. How does this stuff get by 30 pre-production approvals and as many test audiences to be ridiculed by people like me?