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Name that blogLucius10 12-11-06  04:28 pm
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 10:16 am:   

Anyone excited by the idea of The Knight Of Prosperity, a bunch of doofuses who band together to rob Mick Jagger?
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 10:33 am:   

I think South Park was better in the last few eps than it has been for a couple seasons, I think my favorite was the one where Ike starts dating his teacher and Cartman goes Dog the Bounty Hunter. I liked the World of Warcraft ep too, it's always pretty great when they change their animation style.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 10:33 am:   

It's supposed to be quite funny. One of the guys in the gang is the dude (Lenny Venito) who played Julian the snitch on NYPD Blue. I always thought he was the best thing in the episodes he appeared in, so I'm looking forward to seeing him get a break.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 10:36 am:   

Also has Donal Logue from the vastly underrated "Grounded For Life."
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 10:58 am:   

Yeah, i dig south park.
And I'm hoping for Knights of Prosperity. When they let on the show was about robbing Jagger, I said what a great idea. Was this a brit show first?
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 11:43 am:   

Yes, it was called "Let's Rob Andrew Ridgeley." It had a very short run.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 11:49 am:   

I knew it! IT has the smell of a brit comedy in that it doesn't deal with a husband and wife, or a bunch of yuppies. :-)
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 02:29 pm:   

i've been catching old reruns of THE FAMILY GUY lately, and it reminds me a bit of SOUTH PARK. it's essentially a simpson's rip off, but it has some really fine moments, like when the main character has a pool party with saddam hussien and all of america's enemies in it. worth the check out if it passes you buy.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 02:37 pm:   

Will do.

I have a limited appreciation for cartoons, but lately I seem to be more receptive...
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 03:35 pm:   

possibly because with cartoons you don't have to look at vacuous, bad actors?

i dig cartoons. i probably watch more of them than other tv these days. not, mind, that i watch tv much. i finally got to see some of the daily show, but it was mostly hit and miss stuff. lot of missing.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 03:51 pm:   

Possibly.

But I'm gonna be on a good movie role throughout the hollow days.

I never could stand the Simpsons. South Park was the first cartoon I could relate to. Blood tea was a rare animation deal that i liked. But maybe the dam is breaking...
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 03:57 pm:   

what was blood tea?
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:01 pm:   

Read my reveiw of Deja Vu, The Fountain, and Blood Tea and Red Strings-- it's somewhere in the last thread. It's a stop-motion animation thing that took its creator thirteen years to make. It's obsessive and creepy and dark and baffling....
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:02 pm:   

Here it is...


http://www.electricstory.com/reviews/review.aspx?title=new/fountain
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:21 pm:   

cool. i didn't read that before cause i usually leave reading your reviews until after i've seen the movie, if i want to see it (like the fountain). but i'll have a look.
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:22 pm:   

I like Family Guy quite a bit too, even if it's a bit more formulaic (in fact there's a South Park ep where they parody this). A good place to start might be the direct to DVD Stewie Griffin movie, especially with the unrated soundtrack.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:25 pm:   

hey, that sounds alright, actually. i'll have a look for it.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:25 pm:   

What's it called, the Stewie Griffin movie?

And Ben, skip the part about the Fountain. :-) The Re Tea is the last paragraph.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 04:28 pm:   

Yep, Red Tea was pretty fucking cool. But the dude who made it's gotta be a freak. 13 years, I mean.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:02 pm:   

Peter Griffin rules: "Let's drink beer until we can't feel feelings." There's some poetry in there.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:06 pm:   

all those stop motion people are freaks, man. i think it's part of the deal to make the kind of film. i'd go insane if it were me.

i didn't know about the stewie griffin movie. i'll have a look for it.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:16 pm:   

This guy's a mega-freak. Wait'll you see it. !3 years....


Who the hell is Peter Griffin?
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:18 pm:   

peter griffin is the father in the family guy.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:27 pm:   

oh, ok
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:35 pm:   

I wish I had kept up with stop-motion. I used to make stop motion home movies using toys when I was in grade school. It was tedious, but I liked the end result. I stopped before high school. I don't think I have the patience anymore.


Lately I've been watching "Everest: Beyond the Limit" on Discovery. It's a reality show about people climbing Everest. Unlike other reality shows, it really is life or death decisions. The climbers seem insane: a double amputee with metal prosthetic legs, an asthmatic who wants to climb without oxygen, a biker with metal pins in his legs and back. I feel like they could all be in Herzog films (which mostly seem to be about obsession destroying lives).
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:39 pm:   

Has anyone died?

Yeah, I saw that show. i prefer America's Top Model. :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:40 pm:   

Hey, Ben, why aren't you blogging?
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:55 pm:   

Two people have died, and one person almost died.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:57 pm:   

Wow. Well, that is a reality show. When is it on?
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:57 pm:   

Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 05:58 pm:   

Thanks, Mike
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 06:14 pm:   

Tuesday @ 10 PM, and re-run on Friday @ 8 PM. So far, the deaths aren't people directly involved with the the team doing the show. They were a Sherpa, and a climber from another team.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 06:18 pm:   

I might try and catch it Friday. Thanks.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 06:19 pm:   

what do you mean, lucius? i've blogged twice today. once with a giant COCK even ;)
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 07:05 pm:   

Weird. My bookmark keeps taking me back to the Dec 2 entry.

Sally C says Hi.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 07:23 pm:   

weird. i thought maybe you had a bloglines account. sometimes they die down and then all of a sudden you have ten entries.

tell her hi back.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, December 06, 2006 - 07:43 pm:   

No, it's still doing it. Anyway...

I will tell her.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 08:40 am:   

Sure, climbing Mt. Everest is impressive, but can they make a turkey roulade that will impress Chef Anthony Bourdain? I'm hooked on Top Chef. Bravo is now doing an interior decorating contest show with Todd Oldham called Top Design.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 08:43 am:   

Sorry, I can't stand that show. Project Runway? Okay. But Top Chef...Yuck. I might checkout Top Design.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 09:05 am:   

From now on, I will watch "Top Anything." Lucius, a little mousse and a little bronzer and I think we could pitch you as host of "Top Writer." Now, that would be a show...
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 09:16 am:   

Oh, God. I'd have to read the Mss. A better name would be Slush Central. :-)
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 02:21 pm:   

Well, you WOULD have to come up with a tag line used to dismiss a contestant each week. Something like:

"You've been redlined..."
"To the remainder table..."
"I'm afraid you're out of print..."
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 02:22 pm:   

Or you could imprint your own personal style...

"You make me Embarrassed to Be Human..."
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 02:41 pm:   

You're out of print is good.

Or, I'm afraid here's your rejection slip.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 02:52 pm:   

Oh yeah!

You need a right-hand person, someone well-credentialed but less well-known, to hold the contestants by the hand and walk them through the various challenges. (It is not necessary that this be a hot chick, but it could not hurt.) You'll need a locale: some kind of open dormitory room or college apartment, furnished with identical PCs and writing desks. Contestants will be encouraged to cultivate annoying habits and rituals guaranteed to piss off their colleagues. Guest judges eminent in different subgenres can be brought in to help judge challenges to craft prose in certain fictional styles. Or you can invite John Updike to judge fictional pieces using characters from his novels.

Oh, the possibilities are endless. Frank McCourt judges autobiographical sketches. Tom Clancy weighs in on spy potboilers. And the varieties of kooks willing to compete in exchange for some low-end publishing contract are endless!

Lucius, you are so on your way to becoming the Padma Lakshmi of fiction!
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 02:55 pm:   

I'd rather become Mr Lakshmi.
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 04:00 pm:   

you could even have the contestants doing a reading each week. cause we all know readings are great and never boring!

:-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 05:57 pm:   

Now, now, some readings are fun....like the ones where you're loaded on drugs or ones where your girlfriend is making out with you in the back or the ones....well, you get the idea.
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 06:24 pm:   

heh. yeah, some are fun. i just had this image of weekly readings al'la rockstar/american idol, and then the audience rings in to vote. it's a painful fantasy even now ;)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 06:42 pm:   

Yeah, i want to see it now. :-)

In other news, one of my friends paid for a year's live journal for me, fixed the blog up, and...I don't know. Thanks a lot. She called it Shepard's Pi, which has got to go. So, I'm in band-name invention mode. Still don't know if I'm gonna use it or now, but I by god am going to name it.
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Bill
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 06:48 pm:   

for the blog: "Lucius' Luscious Lines and Musings" ?

AS for the writing show, how about "Tabula Rasa"? or "Mightier than the Sword"?



btw - still at work right now in Chicago, lawyer's stink
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 06:57 pm:   

you're going to be doomed, man. paid livejournal, free blogging. it's all over for you :-)

i used to have a name for my blog. i went through like about six or seven. some i liked for longer than others. i called it the urban sprawl project for the longest, since i once had a zine called that. but eventually it didn't fit, and i just ended up with my name.

what's the username for it? i'll senda bunch of people your way if you want.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:14 pm:   

Wait til I decide to start it up or not. :P

As far as a name goes, I'm considering the House of Everything and Nothing.

Or maybe not...
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:20 pm:   

yeah, cool. at the very least you'll be able to use it to leave comments. when people reply to you, you'll get a little email.

i dunno about the name, either :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:23 pm:   

And Bill, thanks for the suggestion, but when people tried to stick me with Luscious as a nickname in the sixth grade, I went OJ on their ass, so...No thanks. :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:25 pm:   

I get a little email? What's it say?
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:40 pm:   

it's just a notification thing, telling you someone posted you a message. saves you from having to keep an eye on conversations.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:46 pm:   

Oh, okay.

Just heard a very sensitive emo band on the tv that made me want to puke -- the fray. does everybody try and sing like that counting crows asshiole?
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PM
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 07:54 pm:   

"As far as a name goes, I'm considering the House of Everything and Nothing."

That's sort of ok but kind of tame. Are you going to play (finally) with bunnies?

Pissing on yr Idols seems more honest...or Smashing yr Idols if you're out of piss... :-)
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PM
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 08:12 pm:   

Please don't mellow on us though...SHANE!!!

The name has to meet our expectations: angry, defiant, unwilling to tolerate the shit that gets passed as quality.

While I was thinking of your name I thought of "V is for Vandermeer"...sorry Jeff it's just too damn funny to think about you with pom poms. Nothing personal. WE ARE MARSHALL! WE ARE MARSHALL!
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PM
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 08:32 pm:   

Here's a few more suggestions:

Soaked in Blood, Splattered with Shit

Wholesome Kitten Manglings

and then the tame:

Respectfully Disagreeable

Burning the Emperor's Clothing

Shouting in an Ignorant Vacuum
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 09:23 pm:   

I think my blog, if i ever decide to activate it, will probably serve a different purpose that this message board -- pimping books. so I don't want to call it Eat A Shit Sandwich, You Wretched of the Earth.
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PM
Posted on Thursday, December 07, 2006 - 10:46 pm:   

Nothing wrong with pimping books. Somebody has to do it -- especially when the publishers aren't always able to give a dedicated push.

Maybe the new stuff will not provide the fork in the eye that one has come to expect.

But my guess is that it will. And who knows how the uninitiated will react.

Presumably the average reader will be able to distinguish between a "burning" blog title and a "burning" insult aimed at them.
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PM
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 01:21 am:   

Anyway, more thoughts about your work: Central/Southern America, journeys, sf/fantasy/horror.

Ficciones: Evoking Genre Borders
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:34 am:   

Well, I'm not going to decide until i finish this novella, but all suggestion are welcome...
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 08:37 am:   

Why don't you steal a name from Theodore Roszak:

A Damnation Worth Waiting For

Seems a shame to waste a title like that by burying it in the middle of a 600-page novel.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 08:51 am:   

Maybe, but it doesn't feel right. Think, think.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 10:00 am:   

Hype During Wartime
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 10:07 am:   

The Good Shepard
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 10:08 am:   

Both good. They're on the list.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 11:48 am:   

Lucius could get away with calling himself Bad Shepard, I think.
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PM
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 11:55 am:   

Frankly I fear my tech is too aggro.

So far my vote is for The Good Shepard.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 12:11 pm:   

A FLICKER question: If you were Aaronovsky, who would you cast as Olga Tell, the sensual 70-something former silent film siren who initiates Jonathan Gates into ritual sex?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 12:16 pm:   

Lauren Bacall.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 12:26 pm:   

He'll probably cast Angelina Jolie. Hollywood doesn't do old.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 12:37 pm:   

Becall did not seem on too sound a footing at the last Oscar telecast. Is she OK to work?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 12:44 pm:   

I didn't see the oscars. If not Bacall, Helen Mirren. She just played a 70 year old.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 01:05 pm:   

Bacall is in Manderlay. She comports herself well.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 01:09 pm:   

Yeah, but that's earlier than the Oscars -- has she suffered a severe decline since?
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 01:16 pm:   

I'm no doctor, but she clearly had trouble reading the Teleprompter and she became flustered and distracted. She had a hard time pulling herself together, which you wouldn't expect from a veteran performer.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 01:25 pm:   

well, I guess it's possible she has suffered a setback.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 02:06 pm:   

I'm not sure I would trust her with a demanding nude sex scene...
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 02:38 pm:   

Helen Mirren's up for sez. She's about to sign to play in a freind's script about Oscar Bonavena and Joe Conforti and Conforti's wife, with whom Oscar had an affair at the Mustang Ranch.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:30 pm:   

Well, she spends most of her time in Manderlay in bed.

Just watched September 11, the series of 11 films by various international filmmakers. It goes without saying that some are better than others. Imamura does a beautiful and odd segment; Sean Penn works Ernest Borgnine pretty hard, and I enjoyed his even though it was cheesy...at least it had a twist; actually, there were only a couple total duds. The most powerful one was almost completely an audio experience, with a frame that was mainly dark throughout.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:32 pm:   

Wish they'd do that for Rwanda or the Sudan.

Sounds good.
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PM
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:35 pm:   

Why not Charlotte Rampling?
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:48 pm:   

Charlotte or Helen would be good for Olga.

I imagine James Spader as Jon; Lilli Taylor as Clare; definitely Jeremy Irons as Vincent St. Cyr the pompous French intellectual; maybe Willem DaFoe as Max Castle; Max Von Sydow as Rozensweig. The only guy I'm stuck on is who plays Zip Lipsky?
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:50 pm:   

The only guy I flashed on for Bonavena is Benicio.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, December 08, 2006 - 04:55 pm:   

They got Javier Bardem. Benicio's too slight.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 09:47 am:   

Watched the MOH ep "Screwfly Solution" which was watchable and mostly interesting. Not so scary, suspenseful, or horrific...excepting the "boob bag".

Don't like Jason Priestly...still don't like Jason Priestly. The other actors were more enjoyable with less boob baggage.

Budgets bring believability unless you're making a camp fire. This episode didn't look so cheap. The outdoor shots in the woods reminded me of Millennium . As did the static. Those are happy memories.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 10:06 am:   

Sounds like something I wouldn't mind seeing. I'll wait for the DVD.
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 10:37 am:   

Seen Apocalypto yet Lucius?
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 10:42 am:   

No, I think I may give it a pass, unless some one tells me to see it. You seen it?
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 11:23 am:   

No, just saw some clips on tv. It looked kind of cool. Mayan sacrifices and all that.
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 12:02 pm:   

Yeah, I'd probably have a bad taste in my mouth while watching it.
Saw a French film called In My Skin with Laurent Lucas from Calvaire and Lemming. This thing was so sick I almost turned it off. His girlfriend gets a cut on her leg and becomes obsessed with it, and starts cutting herself in different places, and then starts cutting her skin off and drying it and saving it. What's with the French and their need to outgross everyone lately?
At least Calvaire had some humor.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 12:23 pm:   

Jesus Christ! What up with that? Lucas was really good in Lemming. You'd think he'd be getting higher end roles.
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 12:35 pm:   

I think this came out before Lemming. There was another one I saw with him in it called Who Killed Bambi that was ok. He plays a doctor who drugs patients and has sex with them.
The girl who starred in In My Skin also directed it. She's a scary looking French chick that kind of looks like that wacko from Betty Blue and Trouble Every Day.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 12:51 pm:   

"I hear that it's just another Gibson sadism-fest..."

So when is Gibson going to be acknowledged as a master of horror?

"What's with the French and their need to outgross everyone lately?"

Perhaps they're competing with that Asian extreme cinema...
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 01:09 pm:   

Hmm. Whacko French chicks....Good! :-)

I guess they are, PM, though the French have their onw tradition of grue.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 02:29 pm:   

"Lucas was really good in Lemming. You'd think he'd be getting higher end roles."

Isn't the unfortunate pattern of recognition that one performs well and then is paid and praised handsomely to in turn perform poorly?
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 02:32 pm:   

Well, yes, but JK says he did the horror flicks before Lemming.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 03:24 pm:   

We'll cross our digits and hope that he turns out differently than so many others...
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 03:26 pm:   

We'll know he hit rock bottom if he ends up in a Gaspar Noe film.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 04:37 pm:   

You mean, you didn't like Irreversible. :-)
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 05:23 pm:   

I haven't felt up to subjecting myself to it yet. I Stand Alone was enough Noe to last me a few years.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 05:48 pm:   

Irreversible has its defenders--I'm not among them. A ten-minute rape scene seemed a bit excessive.
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jk
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 06:02 pm:   

Yeah, I heard about that.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 09:59 pm:   

I found Irreversible very powerful and thought it was very good. I can't say it was enjoyable but I'm certainly glad I saw it. The rape scene was ugly but so was the first scene. I had to watch it a couple of times to see what actually happened.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 10:25 pm:   

Okay the killing scene was ugly, too. So? You had to watch it a couple of times to see what happened? You're making my point for me. I'm sorry, but I couldn't disagree more. Despite liking Victor Cassel as an actor, I thought it was indulgent, derivative, exploitative (make that cheap-ass button pushing EXPLOITATIVE), and it has earned the low esteem and revulsion in which it is held.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2006 - 10:54 pm:   

Lucius, what IS your point? The killing at the beginning is never mentioned when people talk about the movie--only the brutal rape is mentioned. The killing at the beginning (end) is made even uglier by the fact that the wrong man was murdered (which is what one thing I was checking, when I watched that opening scene again).

I found the movie powerful and provocative, not exploitative. It made an impression on me, which is more than most movies do these days.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 06:27 am:   

Ellen, usually I don't respond when you come over here and say sonethiing that flatly contradicts something I said and then get pissed off if anyone challenges your opinion. But I'm really tired and, being tired, I'm going to respond.

"It made an impression on me, which is more than most movies do these days."

But you like almost everything. You like styleless, textureless chunks of celluloid like the Departed and the Devil Wears Prada. Do these films not make an impression on you? If you like them, that's fine, but they're shitty movies. For the most part, they're technically unsound, poorly directed, lacking a signal cinematographic style, and, with a few exceptions, miserably acted. I like some examples of this sort of movie myself, because they float my boat, but I'm not under the misapprehension that they're any good.

"I found the movie powerful and provocative, not exploitative."

Has it become a mark of sophistication to engage extremes of violence as if they were artistic statements? Possibly. How you found the movie doesn't matter. Turn a pig on its head and give it a coat of paint, it's still a pig. Irreversible is a classic exploitation movie given an arthouse gloss. It's not even a particularly competent exploitation movie, but it bears all the tells of that genre. Exploitation movies display a particular relish in the way they depict violence and sexual degradation, and Irreversible hits all the marks. I've seen a hundred giallos that have have achieved more-or-less the same level of ugliness with similar technique and direction (though, admittedly, without Noe's stylishness. City of God, now, is what I call a well-made and effective explloitation movie. It didn't try to hide what it was behind its technical virtousity. But Irreversible revels in its ugliness and tries to sneak around behind its
director's reputation--it tries to get us to ignore that that's what Noe makes: exploitation flicks. And that, to me, is the most repulsive kind of exploitation flick, the kind that attempts to pass itself off as something else--in this case, as art.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 09:36 am:   

Lucius,
You dislike almost everything. I think we're evenly matched. ;-) I can enjoy a movie through its parts. I can love Meryl Streep in Prada and find some scenes in the movie funny and not think the movie great but still enjoy it. I can enjoy the acting in The Departed and go with the flow of the movie and think the movie is ok but not great.
You see every movie in extreme terms: this sucks/ this is the best thing since sliced bread. Well, Lucius I've seen movies you recommended to me as being wowie!! Super duper and they suck.

I'm not at all pissed off that you've challenged my opinion. But you seem awfully pissed off that I've challenged yours. Cool it. Relax. This is not
the end of the world. We disagree. So what?
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 10:35 am:   

Oaky-dokey. I suck. And you, digging the Streep when she's doing yet another riff on her character in the Manchurian Candidate, I guess that's just taste. If you'd like to participate in an orderly discussion, analyzing a particular film on the basis of its strength and weaknesses, perhaps one I recommended that you think bites, its cinematography, its acting and directing, its screenplay, the extent to which the director achieves the intent of the script, etc, then I'm up for it. Not till I've recovered from this novella, but soon thereafter. I'm just weary of people recommending a flim on the basis of one or two scenes, giving crap a passing grade. There are certain verities in cinema, it's not all a matter of taste, but we've become so used to ineptitude in films, we tend to gloss over the stinky stuff and we've let our standards lapse and forgotten the rectitude we demand of other art forms. ANd I don't dislike everything in a black and white way. Case in point, my latest review of the Fountain and Deja Vu, up now at Electric STory. Both fail as movies, but have their virtues. People tend to think that of me because i use extreme humor in making my points--but I find that one has to be extreme in order for one's logic to get over. I don;t expect people to agree with me all the time and I'll admit to being wrong sometimes. Code 46, for example, is a movie that has grown on me. But the overall point I make is not wrong, that American movies are becoming a tranquilizing gruel without flavor or backbone or clear message other than Consume Mass Quantities.

I'm not mad, just kind of in a state of wonderment. I'm not a very PC guy, but it strikes me that Irreversible's one virtue is as an inducement to violate (if one can see that as a virtue). We've seen men's bodies violated that way before, but the only reason that film was made was the rape scene. That's why people talk about it. That was Noe's way of expanding the cinematic dialog and it was reprehensible. It's an ugly, stupid movie, and all the weepy stuff can't disguise that. Noe wanted to show a woman getting destroyed. I can't find any redeeming quality in that.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 10:55 am:   

Lucius, you really don't read carefully, do you. I did not say you suck. I said that some of the movies you've recommended to me have sucked. Big difference.

I'm not going to get into a pissing match with you. I enjoy a lot more movies than you do. Sorry about that. Perhaps it's an occupational hazard of being a reviewer.

The movie is not only about a woman being destroyed. It's also about displaced violence and revenge. The backward trajectory of Irreversible is what "makes" it--because once you see the ugliness of the ending (rape and murder), see those beginning scenes of joy and happiness in a completely different light that is forever spoiled. That's what is "irreversible."
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PM
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 11:57 am:   

Can't we all hug until we vomit?

I hope one day that Ellen will watch and enjoy LEMMING. Everyone who was anybody seems to have liked it :-)

Regarding objectivity/subjectivity in reviewing. Over time one gains information and learns about the reviewer. This learning about the reviewer is usually limited by the space provided for the review and the reviewer's willingness/ability to be honest. Of course the reviewer isn't always even aware of the totality of what/why something is liked.

Given enough accurate information we're able to gain an objective (independently independent) understanding of the reviewer's decision making.

At the same time we're learning something objective about the film (plot details for example)...
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 12:03 pm:   

Well, maybe all movies should be turned on end. That little trick doesn't cut it. I doubt the film would have affected me any differently if I had seen it from the beginning forward--it would be less of a melodrama and had more of a shattering climax, perhaps. Truthfully, the film bored the hell out of me after a couple of minutes following the rape, because the point was obvious--and it would have been obvious if the film had been turned back around, only the point would have been made later. Either way, don't you see, it's irreversible. I think it would have been at least equally as effective played straight. Turning it around was simply Noe's gimmick to get him some arthouse cred and fortunately it failed in that regard; and, also, he wanted to accentuate the rape. If you had had the revenge come last, you make that more the focus of the film, and the audience would reacted somewhat more to the wrong man being killed. Do you really believe the backwards trajectory is what made the film? I mean, think about it. Would you feel markedly different about the rape if all those scenes of sweetness and light had come before her brutalization? How about the revenge? Would you feel markedly different about it? Would it seem less unjust? More unjust? Truthfully, I don't believe the film would play much different if you chopped it up and distributed the scenes randomly. The rape was always the thing Noe cared about, and that would come through any way you slice it.

I reiterate. I'm not mad. This is not a pissing contest. Does feeling strongly about something constitute a pissing contest? God help us if that's so.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 12:47 pm:   

My perception is that if the movie was straightforward, I would have already forgotten the lovely moments at the beginning. Rewinding the way Noe did, the subsequent ugliness (which the viewer can't forget) brings the beginning of the evening into focus.

I see no point continuing the discussion on this particular film. We clearly see it completely differently.
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PM
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 01:24 pm:   

"I said that some of the movies you've recommended to me have sucked."

In general, isn't this true with everyone?

If we all were identical we'd equally appreciate our sameness.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 02:08 pm:   

I'm writing this during my lunch break, so I apologize if I make a slip -- I don't read carelessly, but I frequently write too quickly

That's fine, if you dont want to discuss it any further. Yeah, we see it differently, and I'm trying to distinguish why, to discern what sort of lens you're seeing it through. It seems odd that you're not interested in discussing it, but perhaps that's what discussion has come to on these boards and even generally--more a search for validation than a search for reasonable discourse. If accord is not met with, the discussion ends because disagreement is perceived as intrinsically unpleasant--one should be allowed to state their opinion without being questioned. And, of course, that is allowed. But then what is the purpose in stating opinion if one doesn't wish a dialog?

Frankly, I have trouble believing that you would have forgotten the lovely moments in the movie if you had seen it from a linear perspective, a forward trajectory, and I doubt. too, that you would have failed to recognize the cost of the violence. But be that as it may, the fact that that particular rape was in the movie damns it for me. I didn't need that much ugliness to get that it was ugly and bloody and evil. One thing for sure, Noe certainly knows how to frame a rape scene. Perhaps next he'll try his hand at replicating mass slaughter. lovingly depicting the savaging of children and infants. I don't think that's really been done right yet.

What eludes me in all of this, if I accept your reading of the film, is what Noe was attempting to say. What made him brutalize this woman to the extent he did? To show us that rape is wrong and that the products of rape are sometimes as vile and vicious as the inciting crime? That good people can be reduced to ruin? If so, I think it's been done more subtly, more artistically, and more realistically (I'm speaking of the reactions to the rape here) than the way it was handled in Irreversible, and yet has been every bit as emotionally disquieting. It's not necessary to go into such detail to teach that particular lesson, and that, for me, makes Irreversible expoitative filmmaking. But tell you what, I'm going to dig it up and watch it again, as unpleasant an experience as that will be, and try to determine whether or not I can see it your way. I doubt I can, but I will give it a try.

Cheers.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 03:13 pm:   

Not odd at all. I have nothing more to say. I've said my piece, explained why the movie worked for me.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 04:16 pm:   

Last word.
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Bill
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 04:56 pm:   

I thought Spaceballs was funny
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 04:59 pm:   

Did you now? :-)
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PM
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 05:12 pm:   

Spaceballs was too furry...
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 07:00 pm:   

I just saw "Black Gold." It was a documentary about the coffee industry, focusing on a fair trade co-op in Ethiopia. It showed farmers wanting to be able to eat and send their kids to school and farmers changing crops to chat (a narcotic) so they could survive. They contrasted it with barrista competitions and a Starbucks tour where they talk about being a people oriented company.

It was an obvious piece of propaganda, but it was still hard to not be pissed off at how the farmers are exploited. I guess the situation is the same in any coffee growing region.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 07:07 pm:   

Chat the same shit that the "technicals" in Somalia are stoned on all the time.

That may be propaganda, but most of it is likely true.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 07:08 pm:   

Chat's the same shit...
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2006 - 05:25 am:   

I thought it was "propaganda" in the sense it was trying to make you feel a certain way about the issue. It was definitely biased, but I think it was all true. I heard stories of the same problems in Central America with coffee growing (and cacao).

I was also wondering if chat was the stuff Chiwetel Ejiofor was using in Dirty Pretty Things.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2006 - 05:48 am:   

Yeah, the coffee stuff is CA is as repulsive as the Dole stuff. For instance, I was on a coffee plantation in western Hondura owned by some arm of the Nabisco corporation where they payed workers with a hut to sleep in and a rifle to kill their food and all the coffee they could drink. This was in '86, but that kind of stuff is still happening.

don't know about dirty pretty things. My memories of it are cloudy.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2006 - 06:24 am:   

One friend used to give tours in Costa Rica, where they went on the official Dole banana tours, and then took the same people to see how the pickers really lived. The difference between what they were told and what they saw was huge. But most people don't care as long as they get their cheap coffee/bananas/chocolate or other goods.

After the film, there was somebody who talked about the coffee industry. He claimed "fair trade" doesn't go far enough, since it just sets a base price that is about 8-10 years old.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2006 - 06:34 am:   

Yep. People don't give a shit, generally. Every time I see a Red Lobster commercial, I get a little nuts, having experienced the consequences myself. But coffee, bananas. lobster, etc...it's all same. Busineses built on blood.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2006 - 10:08 am:   

Get ready for the next DiCaprio flick then: BLOOD LOBSTERS.

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