I never thought I’d actually say this, but: well done, Mr. Moffat.
For the first time in Steven Moffat’s run on Doctor Who, I found myself actually enjoying one of his episodes, even if it was marked by his usual tendency to radically rewrite history, canon, and everything else. In this case, that rewriting was very deliberately undertaken, and rather brilliantly done: the whole point was the complete restructuring of everything we know about the Doctor.
Needless to say, my dear, spoilers lie ahead.
New songs by Say Lou Lou, Sky Ferreira, Tennis, VV Brown and Trouble Maker
Sky Ferreira – “I Blame Myself”
American electropop singer Sky Ferreira has had quite a journey getting to her debut album. Still, Night Time, My Time has finally arrived after teaser singles for an interminable three years. It is, sorry to say, a bit of a mixed bag, but “I Blame Myself” is pure pop perfection, featuring a crisp breakbeat and lyrics critiquing the audience for equating art with the person itself. A bold move for a debut album, but perhaps unsurprising given its long gestation. “I blame myself for my reputation” finds Ferreira hoisted by her own petard, and beautifully so.
Simply put, Katell Quillevere’s “Suzanne” is mesmerising filmmaking.
Have you ever imagined just how powerful your name is? Both with and without it you are everything and nothing. It can mask and reveal as much about your parents as it can about your own soul. Changed by friends, marriage or deed poll you have a symbiotic relationship with the letters that form the DNA of your existence. Only a parent truly relinquishes their given name, most do willingly, some do reluctantly but when a child no longer recognises you as mum or dad, when they revert to using the name of your own childhood, then you are submerged deep inside your own existential crisis.
When young women go through horrific things, and then come out the other side and speak of these things, it ought not to be refigured as salacious gossip, or confession narratives, or something to be judged.
It is not news that the way celebrity culture treats young female celebrities (and older female celebrities, for that matter) is icky. There is the constant hounding of singers and models trying to go about their grocery shopping. There are vicious rumours. There is the excessive and depersonalising adoration of the sweet young innocents – until they misstep, and then the celebrity gossip machine gorges itself upon the fall. I am given to think that sometimes the particular adoration of pre-fall female celebrities is set up in order to make their downfalls – however minor or major – seem all the more shocking and tragic. What’s really striking is the contrast between how celebrity culture deals with the “good girl gone bad” moments upon which it seizes as opposed to the real shocks, the real tragedies.
Masquerading as a “Vice” magazine documentary, Ti West’s latest film, “The Sacrament” makes chilling use of immersionist journalism to reimagine the “Jonestown Massacre” as a contemporary event. “Vice” reporter Sam and his cameraman Jake tag along with fashion-photographer Patrick after [...]
Masquerading as a “Vice” magazine documentary, Ti West’s latest film, “The Sacrament” makes chilling use of immersionist journalism to reimagine the “Jonestown Massacre” as a contemporary event. “Vice” reporter Sam and his cameraman Jake tag along with fashion-photographer Patrick after he is suddenly contacted by his troubled sister Caroline from a Christian commune called Eden Parish. Sam wants to film an expose of this hidden community whilst experiencing the situation for himself first hand. The set-up is laced with 80s synths that threaten to take your head off before the haunting sounds of “Heartbeats” by “The Knife” gradually transport the threesome further and further away from their comfort zone.
This week Mark Farnsworth’s film choices from the 2013 London Film Festival feature the Polish post World War 2 drama “Ida,” the British, urban thriller “Sixteen,” South African shocker, “Of Good Report” and “The Fear” a study of domestic violence in Catalonia.
Anna lives the simple life of a novitiate in a Polish convent. Her meals are plain; her days are silent like the snow that frames her tranquil existence. Orphaned in World War 2 Anna knows only god and her fellow nuns. Out of the past emerges Anna’s wayward aunt, “Red Wanda” soaked in booze and cheap men. She was once a judge of some notoriety, exacting revenge on war criminals and collaborators alike. Having annihilated the enemies of the state, she is a broken cynic crushed by the weight of history, crushed by the guilt of surviving when so many of her family were massacred. Wanda reveals she is Jewish; reveals to Anna that her real name is Ida Lebenstein.
It’s a strong list, a good list to see out the old Booker, and well worth your time all round.
The 2013 Man Booker Prize will be announced on Tuesday (15 October), which is somewhat exciting for prize list junkies and book nerds such as myself. Although I always find Man Booker day interesting, this year it will be even more so, for a couple of reasons.
The filmmakers have obviously learned a trick or two on how to sell a film.
“The Sarnos–A Life In Dirty Movies” isn’t really about dirty movies at all. The filmmakers have obviously learned a trick or two from their subject Joe Sarno on how to sell a film. As the prolific writer/director of 75 sexploitation movies, Sarno felt that the most important element of his features was their titles: “Warm Nights and Hot Pleasures,” “Vibrations,” and “The Wall of Flesh” promised salacious delights but were actually more character driven pieces about female emotions. True to form this documentary is really a touching tribute to Sarno’s marriage to his remarkable wife Peggy as the ageing auteur tries one last time to direct another movie.
The GULAG taught an entire generation shame, hatred and fear – and that knowledge has been passed on.
Russian actor Alexei Panin used to be mostly famous for overturning tables in restaurants when he’s in a bad mood. Or for the ugly custody battle he had with his ex-wife over their daughter. Or for his drinking.
Never fear, your intrepid reporter has gathered up a few recently-released gems for the discerning ear.
Once upon a time, it was relatively easy to find new music. You simply turned on the radio and listened until you found something you liked. Everyone was fixed onto the same monoculture. Nowadays, One Direction kiddiepop aside, the culture has fragmented into a million tiny microreleases – and who has the time to trawl through the archives to find something good? Well, never fear, for your intrepid reporter has gathered up a few recently-released gems for the discerning ear.
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