Print Story The light at the end of the tunnel is probably an oncoming penis
By TheophileEscargot (Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 11:27:34 AM EST) Reading, Theatre, Listening, Watching, MLP (all tags)
Theatre: "The Aliens". Watching: "Enter the Void". Listening: "The Human Factor". Me. Links.

Saw The Aliens at the Bush theatre. Thought it was all sold out, but some tickets appeared. Has Mackenzie Crook (Gareth from The Office) in it, which seemed to draw more of a crowd than usual.

Pretty good play. Two eccentric slackers who hang out behind some coffee shop befriend a teenager who works there. Some learning ensues, but the play managed to refrain from getting too sentimental. Clever script that raised quite a few laughs, especially from the well-observed novel written by one of the characters.

Good cast. Crook did a surprisingly intense performance, but didn't overshadow Ralf Little who has a slightly bigger role.

Overall, very good play, well balanced

Review, review, review, review, review, review.

What I'm Watching
Saw Enter the Void at the cinema. Art-house movie in which a young American in Tokyo watches events before and after his death.

Definitely a mixed bag. The first 25 minutes or so is astonishing, filmed from the pov of the main character, it's incredibly intense and involving.

After that though the film starts to get more mixed There's some great stuff in there. The shooting style is terrific, with great swooping shots with CGI seamlessly merged with film. Parts are filmed with tilt-shift-like narrow depth of field with Tokyo looking toylike There are some good moments, and the ex-pat drug-dealing is observed with painful accuracy.

However, it gets a bit self-indulgent. A lot of the scenes drag on too long, and there's a lot of pointless repetition. Also the sex scenes are more realistic than you'd expect in a cinema, and there was one scene in particular I could have done without seeing, especially from three rows back.

Overall though, glad I went to see it, it's certainly something a big different. Cool opening credits anyway.

Guardian, Telegraph, Independent, Salon, NY Times reviews. Rottentomatoes, trailer.

What I'm Listening To
Latest TTC course was Understanding the Human Factor: Life and Its Impact, about the history of domestication of plants and animals, by Gary A. Sojka. Well presented: Sojka is a biologist who also raises rare breeds as a practical farmer, so he's able to come at it from various angles.

However, it did take me longer than usual to get through this course as I kept putting it aside. While it's somewhat interesting, I didn't find the subject itself particularly gripping.

The ending did get a bit more interesting as he went into the problems of modern large-scale agribusiness from a very informed perspective.

Apparently farmed shellfish has relatively little environmental impact, so that's something.

Visiting the parents this weekend, and next weekend.

My father's had more health problems in hospital. He's had yet another fall, in the hospital this time, and is having a scan. Also the second arm operation has left him with an infection: they're blasting him with two antibiotics for it

Had a bit of a scare when my mother phoned me in tears because he didn't recognize her on a visit. He has relatively early dementia and the infection apparently aggravated it: this has never happened before. Apparently he seemed much better on subsequent visits though.

Socioeconomics. Where child benefit goes (via) Fear of employment law damages business.

Sci/Tech. Stuxnet Q&A Research into forming habits. Exoskeleton prosthetic legs, video. Google Translate does Latin.

Game. Flabby physics.

Politics. Graph of terror alerts against elections, more. Man jailed for four months for not giving police his password. Nazi nudging ballot paper.

News. BBC to adapt "The Man in the High Castle" (via).

Pics. Food photography. Dictators' jets. Postcards from London's future. Updated XKCD online communities map. Old 4WD. Food photograph setups (via). Nuclear tests (via).

Video. Kittens on a roomba. Concealed weapons.

Articles. Mark Twain observes a telephone conversation (via). Fred Pohl on book collaborations. Shakespeare is German. Aristotle didn't know anything about theatre. Escalators.

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The light at the end of the tunnel is probably an oncoming penis | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)
Your title by Breaker (4.00 / 1) #1 Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 11:32:51 AM EST

Sorry about your Dad; I hope he gets better soon.

early dementia by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #2 Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 11:46:17 AM EST
Sadly, there is no 'getting better' from that. One thing that I'm really happy about is that particular nastiness doesn't run in my family, on either side.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Busted arms and infections do though by Breaker (4.00 / 1) #3 Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 11:55:37 AM EST
And I hear there's good work going on to help stave off dementia.

[ Parent ]
Damn mexican razor blade hats! by duxup (4.00 / 1) #4 Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:10:25 PM EST
I hate those things.

I feel naked without my knife. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 1) #5 Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:06:14 PM EST
Saving up for a Taser now. I'm pretty excited to get one. Good news that Ridley Scott's getting High Castle to work on. I trust his vision.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

Sorry about your Dad by nebbish (4.00 / 1) #6 Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:02:30 PM EST
Nothing to say about dementia really, it just fucking sucks. I hope it's slow.

My review of Enter the Void. I think the brilliance outweighs the repetition and boredom. I don't think it's as shallow as some do either but then I do take an unhealthy amount of psychedelic drugs.

It's political correctness gone mad!

The light at the end of the tunnel is probably an oncoming penis | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)