Random Film of the Week: My Life to Live

my life to live_MPYou know all those easily forgettable modern quasi-romantic melodramas that try so hard to pull at the emotions at every turn and only fool the easily manipulated thanks to the usual tired plot points repeated over and over again? Well, Jean-Luc Godard’s 1962 masterpiece Vivre Sa Vie: film en douze tableaux STILL spits all over their graves thanks to the director’s remarkable technique and the simple, powerful performance given by Anna Karina as a young woman trying and failing to achieve anything resembling a happy life.

Presented in twelve scenes, each one chock full of what looks like first take genius, this look at one woman’s life and fate isn’t at all your run of the mill tearjerker at all and in fact may almost seems like a documentary at times. Karina’s naturalistic acting is flawless as she plays a character who uproots her own life in the pursuit of some kind of evolving dream that devolves as the film progresses to its abrupt finale. This is one you’re not going to walk away smiling about, but it sure as heck makes for a greatly depressing conversation piece… Continue reading

Random Films: Two From France I Can’t Watch…

made in franceOK, some stuff from the vaults with a goofy story behind them. My late dad gave me a box of VHS tapes around 15 or 20 years back and these two were ones that I couldn’t play on my NTSC tape player (they’re both SEACAM format). I recall telling him this later when he called to ask if I liked the movies and he said he’d “get back to me” later on this. I knew what that meant, so I told him he didn’t have to go looking for a player here at all because even if he DID find one, I’d still need a TV that could play it. If you ever knew my dad long enough, you’d know he had a sort of single-minded pursuit of the great deal mindset to him that was fascinating and slightly pesky once in a while when he’d end up with multiples of some items if you’d simply asked for one. I had to stop him from looking for a VCR and TV on that occasion because I knew he’d somehow find both in his travels and I really didn’t want him to spend that money just so I could watch two movies, one of which I’d already seen…

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You KNOW You NEED A Vacation When…

hazy_parisPlaces you’re been to turn into warped versions of themselves even in the photos you’ve taken. Of course, this is what both real Paris and Hell Paris look like after a few drinks (actually, Hell Paris ALWAYS looks like this, and remember… there’s no beer served in Hell at all despite what some of those signs you’ll come across say).

In short, I really need a vacation, but first I need to be able to PAY for a vacation. I’m working on that, or at least trying to make more money in general. If I can’t go somewhere fancy, it’s at least good enough to pretend at somewhere local and appropriate in its selection of diversions.

OK, OK… I could just go back to Hell for a bit, but I think they’re starting to notice I keep popping up for the free hot buffet and leaving right before the mandatory floor show experience. Hey, that key I found on the street happens to fit the exit door AND gets me in the front gate when I wave it at the guard, so I may as well use it while I can, right?

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Random Film of the Week(end): Rubber

 

I absolutely love that some horror fans HATE Quentin Dupiex’ Rubber (or as it’s called in France, Rubber) for a few reasons. I’m betting he knew that’s just what would happen when the jaded but none too bright gore fanatics out there rolled into theaters or caught this on cable thinking they’d be getting a relentlessly violent and gory flick that just so happened to be non-stop hilarious. Well, it IS indeed gory and often quite funny… but it’s also a one or two gag film that works it hard by going in many directions (often at once) as well as one of the more absurdly meta movies you’ll ever see. You know you’re in for a weird time when a movie starts off with two characters on a desert road talking about how things happen for “no reason” before an audience in the distance waiting around is handed binoculars in order to watch what happens next. That’s probably the most normal thing you’ll see for the next 80+ minutes, by the way…

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