Sunday, February 19, 2012

An Experiment with Time

I'd opened my eyes few times, kept staring at the ceiling's rough grainy texture. Some rays of sunlight sneaked in, fooling the solid black curtains, they revealed the dancing dots of light, the dust. I learned to determinate what time of the day it is, just by looking at the light coming through my window. If it's directly projecting on my walls, it means it's morning; if it's diffuse, it's reflecting from the building in front, it means it's evening. It must have been around 8 or 9 am, I went back to sleep.

I dreamed of concrete blocks and people fighting. I dreamed of myself as a child and as a big gray hungry dog. The dog killed the kid. I woke up.

I had to go to the sink to expel the phlegm, I was choking on. I saw myself in the mirror. The messy hair, the marks of pillows and covers carved on my skin, from face to arms, it looked like a nice new set of scars, branching out from my neck like an old dead tree. It seemed like I had started looking like a different person in the last few days, I suppose that's what happens when you drink 30% of your total weight in booze, in three days.

Got hot coffee and a smoke.


Not a great accomplishment, but I survived yet another birthday. Extreme self-indulgence is over now, I can stop wallowing in booze and films, not before I share a bit of them with you.

In Time: A future where people stop aging at 25, alas, they need to buy themselves time (which works as currency) to keep living. The poor people die "young", while the rich get older without showing signs. Very straightforward critique to capitalism, if you ask me, albeit it wasn't as good as it could have been. The plot holes, and the fact that the end was so generic I already forgot it (lucky you, I can't spoil it), makes it another of the crowd. You won't get a plot like Logan's Run here.

Hanna: Well, that was strange. Skilled assassin teenage girl, trained by her father with some specific target: killing an intelligence agent, who happens to be responsible for the death of her mother. I found some interesting symbolism in Hanna, with the animals and fairytale like themes, combined with cold killing super-soldiers... to be honest, I just expected it to be crappy as hell, but it wasn't. It has its moments.

I wish I had been trained to kill people, hunt animals and taught different languages, when I was that age. Instead I had to do normal teenage stuff, like wearing too much makeup, defining my personality, and making blood pacts with demons, bleh.

In My Skin (Dans ma peau) low-budget French film about self-mutilation. The word "gross" comes to mind, especially the "self-consumption" scenes (I swear I'm never biting my nails again), but this film is not to be watched for the shock factor and the visuals, a la Nekromantink style, or the Human Centipede. This is a drama around a woman and her disconnection with the self, her life and body.

If you're more into violence for the sake of it, Man Bites Dog could be for you. The Belgian cult film is a satire about a serial killer, and a crew filming his adventures for a documentary. He goes on a spree since the very beginning of the film, there's no build up, or much of a conventional plot. No great effects, shot in black and white, no soundtrack adding tension to the violent scenes, which are entwined with scenes of the main character with his family and friends having fun, or simply going on philosophical monologues.

One could argue one important theme here is the disconnection, as in the previous film above, but reflected upon others, not the self. - Beyond that, this is a drama-comedy, it has moments that will crack you up.

And finally, Irreversible, I had already watched this around 2003, a year after it was released, but just re-watched it since I couldn't remember it at all. There's not much to be said here about the plot. Most people have heard of this film, because it's controversial and contains a very famous rape scene with Monica Bellucci. But I must say the direction is great, this coming from someone who gets motion-sickness with shaky camera effects. The director, Gaspar Noé, plays with the colors, the moods, and crude imagery. Thomas Bangalter (Daft Punk) delivers a flawless soundtrack, to accompany this visual input. The inverted linearity of events, just helps to show how cause and effect interact, in a way that goes under radar in our daily lives; as well as flirting with Dunne's theory of "nonlinear" time.

Highly recommended. Funny thing, I never was into Daft Punk, but I love their STs.


  1. Thomas Bangalter has time and time again produced, even during his Stardust days and you're absolutely right. Even if Stardust/Daft Punk wasn't always the best he had a knack for soundtracks. Even Tron: Legacy did it right.

    I'd recommend The Housemaid or I Saw The Devil but that's being a tad provincial. If you haven't, Biutiful is also worth the acclaim IMO. I always liked how Javier Bardem played his roles outside of his brilliant Anton Chigurgh. Last but not least, Monsters, a low-budget but decent 2010 British film.

    But the pressing question remains. If you drank 30% of your weight, how much did grandma knock down to embarrass you?

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  3. Colin, yeah, I loved Tron: Legacy OST. I've watched most of those. Gotta watch Biutiful, so far I've enjoyed González Iñárritu's previous films, and Bardem is a great actor, so it sounds promising.

    Cel, oops, I accidentally your post, LOL. But yeah, she's famous, maaan.