April 30, 2005

Orson Welles, 1975

it didn't take me a minute before falling in love again with Orson Welles. i'd only seen his Citizen Kane, which i fucking loved, but this film, a seriously mischievous mindfuck, didn't strike me as the kind of film one watches in his pajamas on a saturday night. both complex and frivolous, the film is a philosophical essay/experiment on the nature of art inside which Welles deconstructs a documentary and takes the audience along for one trippy ride. amongst other things, the film is a marvel of narration and storytelling. the film was even ten times more intense than i expected it to be, right from the start Welles crosses multiple storylines and characters, but he does so without fear of losing his audience. he knows how to tell a good story and he doesn't back down from complicated storylines and dives right into it with a smirk firmly planted on his face. he picks up the threads and weaves his story with charm, wit, and a very keen eye for the philosophical, all while keeping his guests highly entertained. this is one wild ride. towards the end of the Elmyr story, though, he started losing me. he seemed to be losing some of his steam. it was still an enjoyable ride but i felt he was slowing down (hmm, now that i think of it maybe it was deliberate. i'll look into it when i watch it with the commentary). although enjoyable, i did feel the film bogged down one final, abrupt time with the last act. that was when i let go for good. but the film is still above and beyond one masterful achievement of wit, storytelling, brilliant editing, and above all, one fine meditation on art by one of our most talented artists of our time.

i managed to get on to Disc Two this morning and i must say that i'm deeply impressed. although not packed with extras, the supplements on display here are compelling 50 and 90-minute documentaries in their own right. where Welles used his subjects as characters and jumping off points, here they get their own treatment. Almost True - The Noble Art of Forgery (51:49 min) is a portrait of Elmyr de Hory, the subject of lightning rod of Welles' film. the filmmakers use some of the documentary footage of Elmyr as Welles does so a lot of it wasn't new, but the film delves deeper into the man's life and follows him through his adventures all over the globe. it's a fascinating portrait. highly recommended. Orson Welles: The One-Man Band (87:33 min), on the other hand, is kind of exhausting. it's retelling of Orson's supposedly fading career mostly told by his widow, Oja Kodar. there are some moments of great excitement as Oja shows us a lot of Orson's unfinished films. those are precious. but other than that, it gets tiring after a while. rounding out the extras is a wonderful little 60 Minutes interview between Mike Wallace and Clifford Irving, the author of the fake Howard Hughes autobiography and the real one about Elmyr de Hory, and a phone interview with Howard Hughes. in the end, Criterion has offered us a truly remarkable set for one of Orson's wildest films. i'd recommend a rental to fans of cinema.

Posted by Sam | 11:58 PM |

oh my god, i'm getting my ass over to Future Shop first thing tomorrow. why? i just caught a video for Amerie's 1 Thing (Remix) (featuring Eve) ... and wow. i was blown away. not only by the hyperkinetic music, which is outstanding, but mostly by Amerie's voice and what she does with it. the song actually had me enthralled and excited. read a couple of write ups on the album and man, i'm buying it. looked at Futureshop.ca and, bam -- they've got it for $9.99 :) i just remembered glancing at it last week while i was at the store but wasn't sure if she wasn't an American Idol castoff. damn, hot damn. i haven't had my mind blown as ferociously as this in a long time. i'm not saying it's the best song ever written, it's not. but her singing, damn, it felt like an awakening to something new and exciting. and i haven't been able to say that (hell, let alone even notice it in anyone else) in a long ass time. (please don't point out similarities with Crazy in Love as they are too easy to make. Rich Harrison wrote and produced both songs, yes, but the music was more exciting than the singing in the Beyonce song. here Amerie did her homework and effortlessly delivered astoundingly original vocal arrangements, making the song truly her own. maybe i'm overhyping it a bit (i'm excited, can you tell?), but damn, the song had me enthralled, goddammit!)

update, 11:03 am

Johnathan Rice --> $11.99 at Future Shop (of course :)

update, 1:32 pm


Amerie - Touch
Johnathan Rice - Trouble Is Real

i went to bed incredibly late last night (this morning, actually. i could see light outside, goddammit. haven't done that in years). i woke up around 11 because i wanted to get my ass out to run my errands before the day was over. now they're done. i'm not hungry, maybe sleepy. dunno if i'll even attempt going to bed, though. i should because if i don't i'll definitely sleep on one of my films tonight. lol.
ah, the weekend is here, though, and that feels nice. i'm not complaining :)

Posted by Sam | 2:46 AM |

April 29, 2005

so i didn't have time to post the results of my quick shopping spree yesterday. i didn't even have time to take them out of the bags. lol. had to go to work. here's what i got:

David Bowie - Pin Ups (Rykodisc, bonus tracks) [ used find; one of the few Bowie albums i didn't have ]
Doves - Some Cities
M.I.A. - Arular
Martha Wainwright - Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole
elliott smith - figure 8 [ 9.99$, for some reason, at Renaud Bray ]
The Organ - Grab That Gun
Sarah Slean - Day One

mishie - HMV also has the Johnathan Rice album for 2/25$ :) i almost picked it up but i couldn't find any other album to get with it (for now).

i found everything i was looking for, except for the Eels' new double-album. Future Shop was out of it (they're selling it cheaply). but i thought i'd order it from their website anyway. so last night i get home from work and start looking around and the site's also out of stock. push comes to shove and half an hour later i'm in the middle of a couple of orders. lol :) of course. here's what i ordered:

Future Shop pre-orders

NIN - With Teeth (digipak) [ 9.99$ for one day only, which is thankfully the price of the pre-order ]
Ryan Adams & the Cardinals - Cold Roses (2cd) [ i didn't even know we were already getting our first Ryan Adams album of the year; btw, he'll be in Montreal ...this week? i think that's what i saw, yeah ]


eels - blinking lights and other revelations (2cd)
of Montreal - The Sunlandic Twins
Belle & Sebastian - Dear Catastrophe Waitress [ finally ]

i'm done for a while now :)

holy shit, batman.
Kevin Smith reviews Revenge of the Sith.

Posted by Sam | 9:41 AM |

April 28, 2005

it's another rainy here in town (actually perfect for The Secret shoot today and tomorrow) but i like it. if i've got time i'll pop in Whispering Corridors later on this afternoon. i finally received the following DVDPacific order:


i'd been waiting and obsessing for this order for a while now.

i should be going out to run some errands soon. i gotta get my brother's gift and do that much needed cd-shopping i've been talking about lately. i'll let you know what i was able to find asap. of course :)

Simon Pegg, Edgar Wright, and Kevin Smith talk ... Star Wars! :: goofy grin ::
Twitch |

Posted by Sam | 12:41 PM |

April 27, 2005

new info just keeps coming out about Vincent Perez' The Secret this week.
maybe i am gonna go thursday (hey, fuck, that's tomorrow!) or friday to check out the set over here. Duchovny is now in Montreal. or, as he puts it, 'just outside of'. dunno if that means here. they were supposed to shoot tomorrow and friday.

yesterday i picked up/jumped on Iron & Wine's Woman King ep at HMV for 9.99$. not too bad considering their usually high prices.

speaking of HMV, they had The Organ's Grab That Gun for 2/25$. the only other cd i'd be interested in in that category would be Sarah Slean's Day One. can anyone highly recommend a buy? i saw her on a Vicky Gabereau repeat last week and it piqued my interest. i didn't fall head over heels for her but her lyrics were incredibly elegant and evocative. i just checked out her website and i quite like her journal writing as well. i'll probably get it. it's only 12.50$. i ran into a bunch of recent releases that i hadn't picked up. thank god for HMV's dubious prices but i think a quick shopping spree will be in order this weekend.

Posted by Sam | 10:27 AM |

April 26, 2005

hey all :) how ya doing? i'm doing alright. catching up on last week's 24 (i still have last night's to watch).

12:00 AM - 1:00 AM
i liked how the new President is being played as insecure. he's becoming a bit too sheepish right now but i like how the whole storyline is being played by everyone involved. including Mike. oh, and releasing Prado was the most brilliant idea the writers have come up with thus far this season (and Curtis telling Prado he will arrest him for tresspassing if he stays, thus enabling them to interrogate him at will, was just icing on the cake). and Edgar's an ass now.

dunno why but this popped up on Yahoo today -- more info on the Vincent Perez/David Duchovny film The Secret that'll shoot for two days a few streets away from here later this week. i didn't know it was based on a Japanese film.

Posted by Sam | 1:10 PM |

April 25, 2005

the show was amazing. more than i expected, actually. my expectations were average only because the last couple of times i saw them headline (back in '98) they were good but average. so i wasn't holding my breath when i got my tickets. but damn, that show rocked. tonight they appeared even more like their joyful/neurotic/messed up selves than ever. and it was all good. a damn powerful show. that's what people who don't know Garbage miss. and they were so grateful! amazing show. oh, Garbage Board member blackmustard hit it on the head when he said that they were playing with a sense of urgency last night. that's what gave the show its edge.

and congrats to Francis who managed to snag the setlist. i was going to the front after the show but saw him head back with it. then we went outside to wait for the band and Francis (whom i only knew from seeing him with the setlist inside) was there waiting. we started talking with my friend and a fourth guy. we waited but it looked like the band was gonna take its time so we bailed.

update, 11:21 am

this is just the cutest thing i've ever seen. incredibly touching.

Posted by Sam | 1:31 AM |

April 24, 2005

Garbage - Montreal, 8:00 pm.

talk to you later :)

Posted by Sam | 11:54 AM |

April 23, 2005

hello all. it's a nice quiet, rainy saturday here. but i couldn't be happier about it. i've got a shitload of Zip movies i haven't watched yet and tomorrow i got the Garbage show in Montreal so today's actually a perfect day to stay at home and watch movies.

fuck. Zach Braff is leaving for Montreal today ("Today is a big day; my last day at home before I leave for Canada for two months.")! :D holy shit. think he's a Garbage fan? that would be cool. (checking... yeah, okay -- he did say he was shooting The Last Kiss in Montreal. cool :) lol -- and yes, please click on Zach's 'Funniest thing I've ever seen' link at the bottom of his post :P i don't like downloading videos because i've dial-up but this one's worth it :)

and Zach -- welcome home, babe :)

Posted by Sam | 5:01 PM |

April 21, 2005

whoa. i found some big news today while waiting for my fucking car (they changed a couple more things than i expected and of course it cost a bit more. i'm not pissed at them, i was just mad because it took me an extra hour for them to change everything. but things are good now, everything's in tip-top shape :) oh yeah, the big news. so they had this crappy local newspaper and that was the only thing to read. the news :: Vincent Perez is gonna be filming next week (ie. direct, not star in) The Secret a few streets away from my apartment! oh, and who's the star? !!! David Duchovny !!! (Luc Besson is producing so he might -might- also show up, but i'm not holding my breath.) anyway, i thought that was great news. and they're filming on the same street -- the same stretch of street, even -- that Richard Attenborough filmed 1996's In Love and War (don't feel bad about not knowing about the film, it went totally unnoticed). and that was the street that my then-girlfriend was living on :P so of course we got up early and watched the whole thing. so this is cool. i might drop by.

Posted by Sam | 2:03 AM |

April 20, 2005

the 2005 Cannes Film Festival lineup is up.
as always, the list only manages to make me jealous because there are films from exciting directors that we won't see until maybe next fall. of note to me:

David Cronenberg / A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE
Gus Van Sant / LAST DAYS
Lars Von Trier / MANDERLAY
Woody Allen / MATCH POINT
Seijun Suzuki / OPERETTA TANUKIGOTEN (Princess Raccoon)
François Ozon / LE TEMPS QUI RESTE

btw, Lucas' STAR WARS - EPISODE III will be shown out of competition, but the interesting thing is that the running time has been mentioned (dunno if that was published before) - 2 hours 20 minutes.

it's a rainy day today (yay). i like rainy days once in a while.
and this afternoon i'm getting my tires changed. finally. and getting a new muffler. that should fuck with my head, not hearing the low rumbling it used to make.

Garbage are gonna be at crappy Musique Plus saturday evening to tape a show, and it looks (could very well be a typo) like they're gonna be Artist of the Month for May. fuck, that's the first time i'm gonna miss them playing in Montreal (i'm not even gonna try because there's no way the ex-roommate is gonna want to get there saturday).
i knew they'd get in a couple of days before the show :)

Posted by Sam | 10:53 AM |

April 19, 2005

i knew it was in april. i saw my first Garbage show exactly 9 years ago last sunday. and this sunday i'm gonna see them live for the 6th time only a few blocks away from that first venue. brings a tear to my eye ;) (hey, the band is in NY tonight, then they got Washington thursday ... and nothing until their Montreal show next sunday. they should get there a day or two before the show, then. shit. would've loved to have been there before sunday evening.)

that is all.
nothing much is happening. the week is only beginning. the sun is out. the air is fresh. too a lot of sun in this weekend. ran a little and took long walks. i'm still working evenings monday through friday. what else? oh, i got a bunch of dvd's from Zip yesterday (i think i could legally call it a shipment):

6IXTYNIN9 Pen-ek Ratanaruang, 1999
GO TIGERS! Kenneth A. Carlson, 2001

i'm set until next week :)

okay. this is sick, but it's also one of the greatest inventions ever, imo.

update, 1:13 pm

in one of the biggest fuckups in the history of man, Roman Catholic Cardinals have chosen Cheers' John Ratzenberger as their new spiritual leader. he shall now answer to the name Pope Benedict XVI. discuss.

Posted by Sam | 10:31 AM |

April 18, 2005

has Wesley Clark announced his nomination for '08? i forget Dems had some fighters in their ranks. feels good to see them come out once in a while.

this is what i've been meaning to say.
my work partner and i were talking about Sin City the other week. talk turned to my rant about Bruce Willis wasting precious screen time, especially for good movies. i remember his character from the graphic novels (btw, which i got back from my mother's house this weekend!! woohoo. that fucking rules. along with Miller's brilliant The Dark Knight Returns), especially when he gets his heart attack(s). the dude in the novels was worn down and probably in his '60s (doesn't Michael Madsen say Bruce is in his '60s in the film?). it hit me while i was watching the film -- who the hell believes Willis when he clinches his chest and drops to his knees? no one, that's who. it's supposed to be agonizing and sad, not awkward and ultimately funny. anyway. so my friend got this enlightened casting idea while watching the film -- the great, genius choice would have been ... Brian Cox.
so best.
and so perfect it hurts.

Posted by Sam | 12:27 AM |

April 17, 2005

Steven Soderbergh, 2004

this movie came out on video last week? it feels like it's been out for more than that (was the theatrical release last december? i forget). anyway. being a Zip member i haven't been into new releases for a while so today i went to the video store to pick up some cool new releases. imagine my surprise, though, when i started reading some reviews for this and saw that many of them said this was a pale successor to 2001's Ocean's Eleven. maybe they'd really let themselves go and had been lazy on the sequel. who knows. i was hoping Soderbergh hadn't dropped the ball on this one. but not a minute or two after i hit play did i immediately fall back into the magic that made the remake such a joy to watch. what struck me first was Matt Damon. i don't even remember his character from the first film but here he carries off the nervous character like a pro (and Soderbergh uses him to carry us into the movie). i'll say it again, Matt Damon is one of our most underrated actors working today. the second thing that hit me was Catherine Zeta-Jones. i've never been a fan of hers (to say the least; i never understood the fascination), but here she gives a rather riveting and grounded performance. the boys were able to (effortlessly, it seems) bring back the same charm and wit of the first film/remake, and Steven Soderbergh even manages to make the film feel like one of his small indie pictures -- despite the insane starpower and cool european locations. the film's got such an ease and elegance to it that's very much unique to this crew. and of course, how could i forget David Holmes' amazing soundtrack? it keeps things light and, along with the retro style of editing, keeps things moving along quite nicely. the film, though not necessarily in a bad way, relies more on the characters this time around than on the heists. or maybe that's just the way it comes off. but here the heists are less grandiose and breathtaking than the Bellagio job from the first film. i didn't mind because i enjoyed the actors' performances tremendously (and Soderbergh plans it out so everyone gets their time to shine), it's just an observation. sadly, though, before the end credits get a chance to roll, the film starts unraveling at an alarming rate -- scenes are left to play out well after their welcome's worn out (Julia) and there are a couple of frivolous explanations of the aforementioned heists, which i so did not care for after-the-fact. of course it diminished the rest of the experience a bit for me, but it wasn't enough to sink the effort put into the film, especially the entire first half, which is so superbly handled, with so much flair and elegance by everyone involved, that it makes it almost impossible not to enjoy. recommended to anyone who were charmed by the first film.

Posted by Sam | 11:44 PM |

mark these awesome dates down:

Arrested Development Season Finale

May 1, 2005
Family Guy Season Premiere !
American Dad! Season Premiere

May 7, 2005
Johnny Knoxville ! with System of a Down !

Posted by Sam | 10:09 AM |

April 16, 2005

i can't get over how fantastic Bleed Like Me is getting. that fucking album is growing on me. it's no Kid A, of course it's not, but it's growing stronger and stronger each time i play it. i even told myself not to listen to it too much because a few songs are already driving me crazy, playing around in my head, and that i don't wanna overdose on it too quickly, especially since the show is in a week. but damn. everytime i put it on i can't help myself, i get all spastic about it. lol. and the weird thing is there's all these mild reviews of it all over from people who supposedly know music. i know taste is relative but most of these reviews talk about how these songs sounds like every other Garbage song -- so. not. true. people who know the band and the music know that this one has huge departures in sound, instrumentation, and voice. assholes. of course i don't care what people (especially non-fans) think. but it's frustrating hearing a band you love being dismissed that effortlessly.
there. rant done :)

i'm (surprisingly) loving and falling for this album.

spent the afternoon outside. it's a great day out.
passed by Future Shop this morning to get Bleed Like Me and the Martha Wainwright album for the ex-roommate (she was out of cash and she's coming to see Garbage with me next weekend). i also ran into Future Shop Girl. i couldn't find any copies of the Garbage album. there weren't any staffers close by so i went out and asked her :) there was another staffer with her and he went and got the box in the backstore while i was left alone with her. i didn't say much. she cracked a joke and that was it. she was working i guess and i didn't wanna come on to her. lol. yeah, i was shy. her expression, though, when she turned around and saw that it was me was nice :) i'll try to remember that instead of the awkward silence :) (i got a 50-disc BenQ 8x DVD+R spindle.)

Ju-on: The Grudge (original) gets an Unrated Extended Director's Cut North American dvd release. i find it quite surprising that they're going all out on this one. of course they've got a couple of sequels lined up with director Takashi Shimizu but i find it surprising anyway coming from an american studio.
Twitch |

Posted by Sam | 3:58 PM |

April 14, 2005

i took yesterday off from work. that was fun. the ex came over, we watched 24 (Mike??!), went out shopping, didn't care about the time because i wasn't working. best day of my week so far. tuesday i spun the new Garbage album, Bleed Like Me, because i'm seeing them in about a week and wanna get to know it. i sat down for the whole 45 minutes, not wanting to break it down into favorite songs just yet (that kills an album). i wasn't sure with the first listen but a few songs stood out. and even though a whole lot stuff is going with the instrumentation of the songs, the mix seemed weird for some reason. yesterday i played it for the ex (she liked even though she doesn't know them much) and started getting into the songs a lot more. seems it's growing on me. and this morning i listened to it on my iPod and that's when the mix (especially for opener Bad Boyfriend) made sense. i guess headphones are a must. or at the very least, please listen to this album LOUDLY. it requires it. for me, the first half of the album is loaded with great songs, the first misstep (there are a few light (weak) tracks) appears with track 6 (b-side/but-not-album worthy), then track 7 gets things going again. and i'm actually more psyched about seeing them live now. these songs should kick fucking ass. i only wish i could see them in a huge european venue. seems appropriate for this kind album. it's fucking HUGE, folks. a great, successful hybrid of their darker nature with their love of pop (Breaking Up the Girl, Parade) songs. it's definitely growing on me -- fast -- way more than i thought possible on first listen.

Posted by Sam | 2:34 PM |

April 12, 2005

i finally managed to find everything i was looking for. it doesn't happen that often.
were purchased (all are available extremely cheap at Future Shop, for those who are interested):

Garbage - Bleed Like Me
Martha Wainwright - Martha Wainwright
tweet - It's Me Again
Beanie Sigel - The B.Coming

and i finally found a copy of:

Orgazmo (Unrated Special Edition)

i was happy to see that Future Shop Girl was there but, sadly, she was either avoiding me (rather unlikely since we only talked once) or she didn't see me at all and we missed each other a couple of times.

goldenfiddle time:
Letterman has the real star of Sin City Mickey Rourke on tonight. Dude’s not even on the poster. And he’s bat-shit crazy.
this is fucking brilliant.

Posted by Sam | 11:56 AM |

new releases: < excited! >

Garbage - Bleed Like Me
Martha Wainwright - Martha Wainwright

go get 'em. today.
i know i am.

mishie wants us to head over to iPod Arcade right now.

my hunt for the european or australian Why Do You Love Me singles has opened up some interesting leads.
both Sanity.com.au and HMV Australia have the aussie single, and both are really cheap (around $5 cdn). i've never ordered from Australia before, only the US and UK. this would make it a bit more exciting and international for me :P the shipping is around $6-7. no biggie since that makes it a $12 single. probably what i'd pay around here (and that ain't gonna happen -ever- since no one orders aussie singles around here). i asked Action Records about getting copies of the two singles earlier today and i'm waiting for an answer from them before ordering it from somewhere else.

Posted by Sam | 1:53 AM |

April 11, 2005

holy shit.
i saw this being added ('on order' only) to the Zip catalogue a few weeks back but i didn't say a thing anywhere on the net (most notably on the criterionforum) for fear of everyone adding it to their lists, thus diminishing greatly my chances of ever seeing it.


well, guess what? to my fucking surprise they got (at least) a copy last week ... and this morning, they shipped me a disc ... i'm so completely dumbfounded. this is one Criterion's most prized out-of-print titles. i haven't seen the disc yet but the specs are definitely Criterion's (there are a bunch of different editions floating around). i've never seen the film, and everybody knows by now that i'm a huge Criterion fan, so this is an outstanding surprise.

btw, Zip's customer service is lightning fast now. i requested Carole Laure's CQ2 this morning (after having seen the trailer on the Camping sauvage disc), not even a couple of hours later and the title's been added to the site.

i just checked my mail and got my Garbage tickets for the Montreal show in two weeks :) happy about that.

Posted by Sam | 12:38 PM |

April 10, 2005

anybody here, ideally from Canada (ie. because i wanna get an idea of custom charges) ever order from CD WOW?
the comments seem rather positive, but since i've never ordered from them, and have a cool and faithful supplier in DVDPacific, i have some apprehension about it.

the reason i'm asking is that they have the Doves' 2cd edition of their Lost Sides comp cheaper than at Action Records (my usual UK supplier) and some of the Criterions i'm interested in are a few bucks cheaper than DVDPacific's. shipping's free.

while i'm here i might as well ask -- anybody know where i can find the 4-track (+ video) single for Garbage's Why Do You Love Me? not the 2cd uk edition, but the european or australian versions. they've got 2 additional b-sides.

the day is going on splendidly. weather's warm but not hot. perfectly clear blue skies. i went out running earlier then walked for about 45 minutes while listening to the iPod. an ideal sunday.

Posted by Sam | 2:26 PM |

April 09, 2005

film director Yoshitaro Nomura passed away friday.

weird news because, although his work is not amongst the "cool" new wave of asian cinema Hollywood has been pillaging lately, he's been on my radar since last fall when i came upon Zero Focus (1961) through Zip. it looked creepy enough and the reviews were great so i rented it. i ended up not watching it but i've had a burned copy for a couple of months now. i've been meaning to watch the film but have been a retard about it, just because i can. his passing has convinced me to finally sit down for it, though.
i also want to rent his Kichiku (1978), aka The Demon.

Posted by Sam | 2:34 AM |

April 08, 2005

hello. as you can see, nothing much happened this week. worked a lot. last evening of work tonight (yay). this weekend i'm driving down to the ex-roommate's apartment to hang out. i'm loading up her new iPod with all my Beck, k-os, Coldplay, and Missy. aside from that i have a couple of dvd's i'll watch and that's it. i should hang out with the ex at some point. speaking of which, with all the eye-candy i'm running across at work and in stores and the light flirting coming out of it, i've realized recently that i might be ready to start anew, girl-wise, sometime soon. i still don't see myself walking up to a girl and asking her out, but i do feel ready to maybe start a new relationship in the near future. something i haven't felt since the ex (and since we're still "hanging out"). so i told her this week, that sometime in the near future i might wanna get a new girlfriend, because i didn't feel right trying to hook up with another girl while still seeing the ex (even though our hanging out had no ties attached). she was a bit shocked by it but understood.

so that was my week, basically. stuff happened (watching a couple of good movies, receiving huge Criterion orders, and, even eclipsing that, getting noticed by girls more and more (a whole lot more, actually), which i'm starting to notice big time. it's very weird) but nothing major. i hope you're also all having a great week. take care.

best thing i've seen all week: David Banner hearting Napoleon Dynamite. i'd definitely wear that shirt.
catchdubsdotcom :

Posted by Sam | 12:00 PM |

April 04, 2005

oh, god loves me. and he likes it when i get stuff :)


A NIGHT TO REMEMBER (The Criterion Collection) Rob Baker, 1958
DAS BOOT (THE DIRECTOR'S CUT) (Superbit) (2 Discs)

plus, i've got UNDERWORLD (UNRATED EXTENDED CUT) and Todd Haynes' SAFE on their way for next weekend.

and both of my DVDPacific packages finally arrived today. these Criterion sets were ordered during the past month, so the buys were not as impulsive or huge as they might seem today all bunched up together. it was frustrating waiting for them to arrive these past couple of weeks. but here they are, finally, and arriving on the same day :) sweet glory, hallelujah.

THE RIVER Jean Renoir, 1951
MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO (2 Discs) Gus Van Sant, 1991
L'ECLISSE (2 Discs) Michelangelo Antonioni, 1962
THE SWORD OF DOOM Kihachi Okamoto, 1966
KAGEMUSHA (2 Discs) Akira Kurosawa, 1980

Posted by Sam | 2:34 PM |

Frank Miller's Sin City
Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez, special guest director Quentin Tarantino, 2005

the look of the film, which you all know by now, is stellar. Rodriguez was obviously a huge fan of the books and understood the visuals by heart. the violence and meanness of the books are also --surprisingly-- intact from the novels. that's the first thing that hits you after the black and white picture -- the surly and mean nature of the characters. i have a couple of Sin City novels so i knew what to expect but i was still shocked by how much was left on the screen. bravo to Dimension (Miramax) for having the balls to release such a picture in this day and age where the lead can never kill, even the bad guy, directly. this is a testament to the bravura type of filmmaking Robert Rodriguez has been working with all these years. for all the things that Rodriguez and company got right (Mickey Rourke -- wow, Jessica Alba surprised me with the ease she sank into her role (even the lingering shyness is explained by Bruce's character), Clive Owen, and Nick Stahl for sinking his teeth into his character like a badass), though, the film ended up kinda underwhelming me in other parts, especially with the third act. Bruce Willis. Bruce Willis cannot act. and i don't know why people don't call him out on it, he just doesn't. but i keep forgetting how bad an actor he is everytime until i see a film he's in. the guy does not bring anything to the role. i said this back in '99 with The Sixth Sense and i keep saying it everytime i come out of a film that features him -- he only has two expressions: 'absorbed' and 'thinking'. the guy has nothing else! btw, i thought Quentin had helped direct the bits with mr Willis only because i thought no one else knew how, or wanted, to direct him. but no, he directed the whole Clive Owen segment. and what a stunner that is. and it doesn't even stray from the style of the rest of the film. i didn't even know he'd directed it until i looked it up after the film. a great story well told. even though i left a bit on my appetite (thanks to Willis and the excruciatingly slow Rodriguez style of editing in the last act), the film is definitely a winner. don't let me dissuade you from seeing it. it's a unique film experience. Robert Rodriguez has a vision and he sticks to it. not only were they able to successfully bring Frank Miller's sadistic Sin City to the screen, but they did it on their own uncompromised terms. and they must be commanded for that. i just read that Rodriguez wants to bring the rest of the Sin City stories to the screen. i couldn't be happier about that. a stellar (if still flawed in some places) film.

Posted by Sam | 12:27 AM |

April 03, 2005

Sin City, here i come !! (apparently.)

i'm excited.
the ex just called me up from outside of town (she was in Montreal since friday). she's coming back around 9. i asked her if she wanted to go see Sin City at 9:50 tonight and she said sure. this was my last chance to see it before next saturday because they don't have afternoon showings during the week at the theater that's got the english version.

i wasted my afternoon online and encoding albums for my iPod.

Posted by Sam | 7:12 PM |

April 02, 2005

someone over at the criterionforum may have unlocked the mystery of the missing spine numbers.
here's a look at The Criterion Collection's (possible) titles for July '05 (including some exceptional and eagerly awaited titles, apparently).

292 UNFAITHFULLY YOURS Preston Sturges, 1948
293 AU REVOIR LES ENFANTS Louis Malle, 1987
296 LE NOTTI BIANCHE Luchino Visconti, 1957
298 GATE OF FLESH Seijun Suzuki, 1964
299 STORY OF A PROSTITUTE Seijun Suzuki, 1965

in more personal news -- i bought Beck's Guero today :) the Deluxe version, too.
i changed my mind about getting the standard edition when i read about the 7 bonus tracks/remixes. i don't like the idea of overpriced Universal limited editions when it comes to artists i'm not absolutely in love with, but in this case, there's no way i was gonna pass it up. (btw, it's not as cumbersome and tacky-looking as the U2 and Gwen boxes. this one's a nice, elegant, big white book/dvd case -- and the backcover holding up the discs should be the norm for 2-disc sets in dvd. stylish.) cool sidenote -- there's this really cute girl working at Future Shop. i've caught us both looking at each other everytime i go there. sadly, though, the last couple of times i was there with the ex :) damn. but she looks young. in her early-twenties. anyway. she was there today and i couldn't find Guero so after a while she passed by and i asked her. she couldn't find it either but helped me look for it throughout the store for a good 5-10 minutes. of course it's her job, but seeing as we'd been kinda looking at each other for the past couple of weeks that i thought that that was sweet of her.

what the fuck is this?
(looking for some light entertainment for tonight, i was hoping to rent Underworld today. none of the video stores had the extended cut so i'm looking it up on Zip.) so Len Wiseman and wife Kate Beckinsale had already made Underworld back in '96? i never heard about that. freaky.

Posted by Sam | 8:04 PM |

April 01, 2005

The Final Cut
Omar Naïm, 2004

bland, inept filmmaking. you've got a highly underwritten script that, admittedly, has some great, fresh new ideas and themes going for it, but writer-director Omar Naïm does not seem to know where to go with these, nor does he even elaborate much on the ones he works with, and Robin Williams is fine as the man responsible for cutting these precious lives down to two hours films but he's not even remotely intriguing or interesting enough to bring me along so i was left with intellectual ideas and wasted leads. i will say this, though, the sets (James Chinlund did the production design, Kelvin Humenny was the art director, and Shane Vieau did the set decoration -- all of it beautifully shot by The Silence of the Lambs' Tak Fujimoto) are beautiful; as quiet, controlled, and perfect as Williams' Cutter character. Naïm also spelled out way too many of his ideas for me to care. so, at one point, i just gave up. the first thing you'll notice (hopefully not because you won't have rented it) when you watch the film are the impossibly frequent bursts of laughably incompetent acting (most notably from Jesus himself (Jim Caviezel), sporting the fakest, ugliest beard known to man). as with the worse of sci-fi, this film feels cold, detached, and too intellectual for its own good and forgets to back it up with real human emotion. the end result was way too banal for me to care.

Posted by Sam | 2:30 PM |

Happy April Fools Day, everyone.
don't believe a thing you read on the internet today.

that being said, though, this looks legit and way too cool not to post.
i guess i'll have to hold on to my PS2 now:

24 is coming to the PS2 this fall!
now you can shit your pants.

i haven't been as fanatic about the show this year as with previous seasons. of course i think season 4 is better than season 3 but somehow i've found myself wondering about the writing. it doesn't seem to pull me in as much as season 1 and 2 did. it only seems to cover its own ass and do some awkward recap dialogue every 15 minutes. it doesn't feel as fresh as before. i'm not as excited about it, is what i'm trying to say. that's it. i'm still following it and care for Jack Bauer and the gang, but hopefully this is just the build up to a bigger and better show for seasons to come.

be creative and have fun today.

btw, what's the best April Fools you've ever pulled or been witness to?
i'm trying to get ideas :)

Posted by Sam | 11:43 AM |