Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Travelling to the Centre

Zimblogians go once every three life times on a trip of self discovery.  This one has piloted his soft ship to the centre of the Ghama Ghama Glong Nebula.

Secret Code for November 30, 2010

"If you are going to keep your shoulder to the wheel and your eye on the prize, maybe a little yoga could help."  Again, "If you are going to keep your shoulder to the wheel and your eye on the privze, maybe a little yoga could help."  Today's colour is cinnabar.  Today's author is wundabar.  That is all, maho maho.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Never fear!

Because you never asked for it, and yes it is NSFW

The Suicide edition of of WTH Japan

If you haven't seen "The Suicide Club" and you are into extreme cinema, then I think you should go to your netflick and put it on your list.  It is an incredibly oddball film.  In Japan, Suicide becomes a group sport.  Whole classes kill themselves, leaving cops holdng the bag and wondering why.  The bag, by the way, is literal, and holds skin samples of all the suicides.  So, who is behind it and why?  Well, it's not a spoiler to say to just watch the film and enjoy the funkiness and don't worry about logic.



It's also a musical!

The Walking Dead

Well last week ended in on an attack on the camp. So this week starts with burials.  Not everyone is able to let go, and there are question over how best to deal with the dead.  The more important question, though, is what the living are going to do.  Some would be happy just to stay where they are, but the double leadership between shane and our hero isn't hearing it.  Shane wants to go a hundred miles and check out an army base.  Our hero wants to go the CDC.  In all honesty, there's no wrong question to this since I think all the answers are equally screwed up.

It was a strong episode overall, and has now completely gone off the reservation of the comic books.  This isn't a bad thing as now we can look toward the second season with an air of mystification.  I think AMC has done a good job on this show so far, but it really needs a full season for a proper examination.  Thank the Lord, it has been renewed!!

Today's secret code for november 29,2010

"So, are there Yule  loggers?"  Again:   "So are there Yule loggers?"  Today's colour is roaring.  Today's author is toasty.  That is all, maho maho.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Initiation of Sarah


This is for Final Girl's film club.  You should go HERE to check it out!
http://finalgirl.blogspot.com/

Now read the true horrifying tale of Sarah after the jump!

Lost Gods

Lost Gods was released in 1976, by the band QWERTY.  The same titled first song is blamed for the mysterious Oakland riots and fire.

Chicks dig the car


The Seer of Parlym

The Seer of Parlym seems much, and knows something.  The Seer is specially apt to see things starting with the letter "P", or involve the number "6."  The Seer has seen his own death so cannot be threatened unless your name is John Constance Quasar, in which case you will be refused an appointment in any case.

Sherilyn Khan

Cat Demons have both a sense a style and fun.  Unfortunately, what they consider fun is playing with you, and calling you "mouse."

Even LOLs get their 15 minutes

Japanese are weird

The Magical Girlfriend is a common trope of anime. Basically, normal nerd boy gets a magical girlfriend. On the plus side she can get him out of jams. On the negative side, she tends to get him into jams by being insanely jealous and having odd friends/old lovers/family.

An angel makes for a very unusual girlfriend. In "Tenshi Ni Narumon" (I wanna be an angel) our hero meets a young girl who indeeds wants to be an angel, and her odd family of monsters. They are often attacked by other people of their world who seem to have invented "Rubber tech." It's all mostly light hearted and very fun.



He had it easy. Our hero in Dokuro chan is also sort of dating an angel. I say sort of because it's not his idea. She has latched on to him for reasons all her own. Worse, she has a bad temper and will KILL him on a whim. It's all ok though, cause then she just brings him back to life. What fun!



The Two Saddest Songs In The World



Triassic Attack

Oh Syfy here we are again.  Another Saturday night and another huge honking stinker of a film.  This one has a slightly more likeable cast than usual but the pain remains.  So for the record.  Jerk of a guy has the nerve to offer a lot of people money for their land.  People take the money then say, "Hey you are making money off of this, so we want more."

This personally annoys me.  If someone wants to pay you for something like land you can bet they think they can make a profit from it.  So if you take the money then sorry.  It was your deal.  Anyway, there's also cultural cocerns from local native american group led by trinket store owner and shouty uncle.  Shouty Uncle wants JUSTICE.  Local cop wants everyone to shut up, and for his daughter to be chaste till she is ohhh around 32.  

Local cop is frustrated.

Local cop's wife is a hot bone digger who is now dating the geek who has bought up all the land.  She is more permissive with daughter and no doubt this will lead to trouble later.  Daughter is trying to date a college boy, and wants to sneak out to the lake.  So, with all plot points set on stun, now it's shouty uncle in the museum doing a tribal hokey pokey.  He gets a hoodoo stiffee and causes all the dinosaur bones to get up and shake it all about.  The rest of the film is folks running from dinosaurs bones, running to each other, and coming up with a suitably lame way to off a skeleton.

By the number plotting plodding along.  Folks going, "It's all right shouty uncle you've killed a whole bunch of people but your heart was in the right place."  Yeah, this is Syfy on a saturday night.  Oh and bad special effects?  Good gravy.  There are several shots where the computer animated bones are transparent, there are other shots that don't match because when the bones appear the entire scene gets murky.  Just ugly ugly ugly.

Today's secret code for November 28, 2010

"It's hard to muck out the stables in glass slippers."  Again:  "It's hard to muck out the stables in glass slippers."  Today's colour is clear to see.  Today's author is working hard.  That is all, maho maho.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Why I hate vampires, and why they are always more popular than zombies...

oh I have to invite you in?
The stained window in the Chapel of St. Heisenberg.  It represents the singularity of God, and the path towards that Singularity and at the same time the emanations from that singularity that effect us all.

The Pardoned Turkey Still Had Death In Its Eyes.

Spirits of the Shallows

Most people fear the deeps.  It is the shallows one should watch for.  They are tricky and slick.  The spirits of the shallow hate us more for familiarity.

More Weird Japan

Soul Eater is just weird for weird. Death has a school for those who are made to take the lives of troublesome people and things. These people are paired with living weapons. The series follows three sets of students. The A+ girl and her living scythe, the A+ egotist and his much wiser weapon, and the pampered, neurotic son of death and his twin death dealing pistols sisters. It's all very drool and amusing and tim burton-y slash japan.

Last Exile

I have no idea why this is called "Last Exile," yet. I enjoy what I'm seeing though. It's a retro, steam punk style world. There are huge floating airships fighting in large wars while the rest of us keep their heads down. One pair of civilians fly messages in their their light weight flyer. They soon get involved in larger matters.

This is a good show for just the sheer joy of flying. From the big, lumbering flying carriers to the small flyers, it's all about the flying.

Expendables

Well here it is. The single film that reduces every eighties action film into one big cluster action film. We have Stallone, and Let Li, and Ahnold, and Nathan, and Willis, and just a whole host of others. They are either mercenaries, or targets and the film is just a series of action flash points between famous people and corpses.

This is not a bad thing. Any film where a "warning shot" leaves a person without a top half is worth watching. That Micky Rourke is the voice of reason, (let me repeat that)that MICKY ROURKE is the voice of reason is worth watching. And that Dolph Lundgren is a cool good/bad guy is worth watching.

This is a film so smart it gave itself a lobotomy and a chain gun. Watch it damn it!

Zombie Haiku

Well there aren't enough first person zombie novels, so this is a rather novel novel. A collection of haiku written first by a living survivor and then soon a very active zombie, it never lacks for interest. We generally don't see much writing from zombies but the structure of the haiku can be seen as within a zombies rather limited mental abilities.

Yes, there is one haiku that starts.."brains, brains, brains, brains, brains.."

It's a fun, quick read. Also, we really need more books in haiku form.

Thank you very much
great arthur ryan mecum
your verses sure bite

Altitude

Ok, sometimes I end up watching too many horror movies...
Occupational hazard

It leaves me grumpy sometimes. Here's a good example. I wanted ALL of these characters dead. I faulted the film film for not being long enough to kill to them as they deserved. I'm not a blood thirsty person by nature, I'm not a person that enjoys slaughter films like "Hostel." I just can't stand the idea of being stuck in a small plan with either 1) whiny, jerky people, or 2) jerky, jerky people.  Since the film basically makes us share a plane ride with both makes me as irritable as flying coach with a puking baby in the next seat.

The plot is fairly simple.  A bunch of friends are taking a final trip together.  They are taking a plane to a concert and the pilot, who is a pretty girl, is proud of her new license.  There is the alpha asshole, the beta asshole, the whiny I just brought these drugs for motion sickness asshole, the passive comic book reading nerd stalker asshole, and our pilot who has issues cause mom died in a plane crash.  Gee, what can go wrong?

A
Lot.

Soon the plane just keeps going up and up and up.  And it goes up into a mysterious cloud.  And there's a mysterious screaming thing in the cloud.  People in Air Asshole take it as about as well as you expect.  And then they either live too long, or too short to deal with it.

There.  It has some suspense.  It's better than a lot of films that are horror.  But if I see another young adult asshole it will be too soon.

Firebreather

well...

Ok, it's not horrible. Well the animation isn't good. I mean way not good. But it's fairly well written. Kid tries to make in high school but has trouble fitting in. The reason is he has about the single best origin for a super hero ever. See he's Godzilla's son! Ok, ok, not Godzilla for copyright reasons, but yes basically Godzilla's son. So he's fast, strong, and can he breath fire. The Government is keeping an eye on him. His daddy is keeping an eye on him. His daddy's enemies want to kill him. Oh, and his mom is keeping an eye on him. What's a troubled firebreathing teen to do?

Parts of this wasn't bad, but honestly it didn't wow me except for being Godzilla's son. That's way cool.

Young Justice

Young Justice is a bit more serious than Teen Titans or Bold and the Brave, but a bit less serious than Justice League unlimited.  So it sort of strikes a good comic balance from the git go.  It's the story of the various side kicks of the main heroes of the DC universe.  There's Robin (batman), Speedy (green arrow), Aqualad (Aquaman), and Kid Flash (the Flash).  They are all busting at the bit because this is "the day."  That is, it's the day where they take their first real step to joining the Justice League.

Well, first steps are often baby steps.

Not liking that just basically won the key to the sauna, the bridle at the bit.  Speedy (who is famous in comic nerd history for being a junkie at one point) gives it up and quits.  The others sneak out as the "adults" are busy to help a fire at a top secret facility.  Unfortunately, Cadmus is about as straight as a corkscrew.  Our heroes find out they are gene tampering, mind controlling putzes who have just finished cloning a young superman.  Left on their own the young heroes acquit themselves well and free the superman clone.  The adult heroes decide to give them a bit of leash and give them an old base and a lot of supervision and "Young Justice" is born.

The team certainly has promise.  Young Superman is certainly more edgy than Clark but still very naive since he's stilll wet from being out of the cloning pod.  He's easily the most powerful member but he's still not quite superman yet.  No heat vision, no flying as of yet.  Robin is easily the brains of the group and spent more time hacking systems than beating up genetically modified bad guys.   Kid Flash is the doofus of the group, but at least being able to run at superspeeds doesn't make him a useless doofus.  Aqualad is the utility infielder of the group.  He is super strong, amphibious, and has devices to make weapons out of "hard" water and shoot out electricity.  They are joined by the Martian Manhunter's niece (Huh?? sorry that's the comic nerd in me) who's a shape changer but we don't know much else except she's hot and green.

All in all something worth watching.

Today's Secret Code for November 27, 2010

"Too much money is like too many frogs in your pocket, it's just going to keep jumping out."  Again:  "Too much money is like too many frogs in your pocket, it's just going to keep jumping out."  Today's colour is bright.  Today's author is not dim.  That is all, maho maho.

Friday, November 26, 2010

They are playful...

They do love their mazes the old in and out, up and over, behind your back and peek over your shoulder.  They are playful.  Spitful and playful.  Hungry and playful. 

When astarti winks...

The world holds its breath

Japanese are either weirdly cool, or cooly weird.

Disgaea was and is a video game of wonderful strangeness. Sort of a dungeon crawl type affair where you take your troops and position them and attack the enemy. It has a shell of story that makes it all light fun. So why not make a tv show of it?

Well, maybe because it makes no sense. Here we have a demon prince, his demon vassel, and a rather angelic young lady forming a rather odd threesome. Add in space ship jones types and undead penguins that say "Dood" a lot, and you have a recipe for plots that can go anywhere. It's the type of show that if it isn't overkill then its cute overkill. Which is worse? Consult your doctor.

I love this show, it's funny and strange and did I mention undead penguins that say "dood?" Dood that is worth the price of add mission oni! So thank you Japan for being weird and treating good and evil like one would treat shirt and skins.





K-20

K-20 is nothing else a GORGEOUS film.  Set in an alternate Japan where WWII did not happen there are vast vistas of a steam punkish Tokyo.  Still there are problems.  The ruling has clamped down on the other classes to keep them in their place.  The ruling class  though is the prey of the Fiend with 20 faces who steals from the rich... and well keeps it.

The opening scene where K-20 steals a proto type device created by Telsa just illustrates how rich and lush this film looks.  By the end of the scene with a flourish like a professional magician K-20 disappears with the device.  I was certainly aching to see more wonderful tricks.

Luckily the plot keeps up with the visual aspect of the film.  A young magician and acrobat is framed by k-20 and is arrested and beaten by the police.  Freed by friendly thieves, our hero must now learn how to be the best thief in the world so he can find and catch K-20.  In his quest he becomes involved with a beautiful noble woman and the detective who is going to marry her and has been chasing K-20 for years.

The action is fast, the plot and dialogue is fun.  The heroine is plucky.  The hero is game.  The villain always seems a step ahead of everyone.  Really what more can you ask?   And I just love the little bits, there's a whole little thing about when you should say thank you, or when the noble lady pulls some improbable skill out of her hat she just says, "Well that's just part of being a noble lady today."  Really this made me smile.  Good old fashion fun from folks who haven't forgotten what that is.


Today's secret code for Novemeber 26

"It's mating season for dear, and maybe season for us."  Again:  "It's mating season for dear, and maybe season for us."  Today's colour is fading into the white.  Today's author has sixteen points.  That is all, maho maho.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Grinning Ghost

Some are not sure if the Grinning Ghost was ever human at all.  It's face is more doll like than human.  Does it haunt or does it lurk?  Does it prey, or can it pray?  None can say, nor will say.  The Grinning Ghost is alone, and alone it should be left.

The Coming of the Black Guard

When the fires of Gehenna are lit
then will come the Black Guard
They come to say goodbye, and say it hard
Behind their mask not one thought of mercy will fit
Only the desire to smell the stink of Gehenna
The perfume of the burning gardens of Gehenna

Dreams in Geometric Repose

LOLs can be demanding

Boardwalk Empire

I love me some Martin Scorsese, even his lesser works are infinity more interesting than most directors can dream. I also love me some Steve Buscemi, you know the funny looking guy in Fargo. No, no not William Macy, the OTHER funny looking guy. Yeah the guy that ended up in the wood chipper. He's a great actor and I bet he has some amazing stories.

Now these two are joined together in the HBO series "Boardwalk Empire," well at least for the first episode that Scorsese directed. Set at the eve of Prohibition this is the story of Enoch "Nucky" Thompson. A consumate politician and shady character who is the behind the scenes king of Atlantic City. Nucky sees Prohibition as a license to print money. He can get boats from Canada to smuggle whiskey to a thirsty america. But Nucky despite being as crooked as a bent corkscrew, still has some morals so it will be a question if he can be half a gangster.

The show is smart, funny and exciting much like Steve Buscemi. The period detail is wonderful, specially when they are on the boardwalk. It's one compelling bit of TV.

The BEST thanksgiving film ever

I am not lying.  Ladies and gentlemen, birds and lords, I present to you "What's Cooking."  It is just a joy to watch.  It's funny, it's touching, and the ending... well... let's not spoil the desert right?  This is the story of different families in LA trying to have the all american holiday.  We have a gigantico latino family, a jewish family, an asian family, and a black family.  We go back and forth among the families as each follow their own story arc.  The Latino family for example has some stress cause Mom invited her new boyfriend to dinner and her son invited her ex husband.  Awkward.  The editing is great, the acting just shines, and I always end up hungry after watching this film.  Please, find it and watch it.  Seriously as a favor to me!  You won't be disappointed!!

To all ships at sea and our boys and girls serving Uncle Sam

Your good works have not gone unnoticed
Your sacrifices are remembered
We here wish you only the best
Happy Holidays!

Today's Secretion Code

"Who was more to blame for the events of 'Planes, Trains, and Automobiles?'  Discuss."  Again:  "Who was more to blame for the events of 'Planes, Trains, and Automobiles?'  Discuss."  Today's colour is a shade of Doppler.  Today's author grades on curves.  That is all, Maho Maho.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

In A Darkling Spirit

Who Mata Hari was may be forgotten but not her name.
Now fiends wear that gaining the mantra of seduction
Rename succubi playing the same old spy games
but for the price of souls and not for fame

LOL try to be helpful

The Storm Ghost Commands the Lightning

The Curiosity of Chance

If you are of a certain age, then eighties teen film are an important part of your film lexicon.  No one can forget the first time they've watched "The Breakfast Club," or "16 candles."  My personal favorite of the genre was "Better Off Dead," for it's sheer silliness.  Obviously I'm not the only person who thinks that this genre is cool given that the film "THe CUriousity of Chance," is set clearly in that genre.  With one important difference.

The main character is gay.

Chance is certainly a character, he's been raised by his military obsessed Dad and has hopped from school to school.  Having really nothing to lose, he's not afraid to be extremely visible as he goes down the school halls in a top hat.  He's also not afraid to stand up to bullies.  Still, life is far from easy and he has to deal with crushes and friends and family.  Also, he finds he has a hidden talent not suitable for High School.  Don't worry it's just singing, but in drag.

This is a well produced, written and acted number.  I liked all the characters and didn't feel anyone was dumber than they should have been.  Definitely eighties music is a plus, and full fledge musical numbers added to the fun.  Certainly a good film to watch.

Metropia

Strange.
I've seen strange and this is strange. It's got that David Lynch feel to it. That feel like you are on acid, except you'd never do acid, so why does it feel like you are acid, and how do you know how that would feel like, and oh god oh god my fingers are bending backwards.

Yeah that feeling.

Our hero is a normal schmoe. He works in customer service, he's unhappy, and he sort of looks like someone who went to summer concentration camp.   He tries a new shampoo and now he has a voice in his head.  One of THOSE voices.  The paranoid ones.  But just because you are paranoid doesn't mean there aren't world conspiracies. 

Done in a very interesting animated style, this is a compelling but low key film.  Playing to a noirish feel, it doesn't worry too much about internal logic and concentrates more on that feel I was describing earilier.  Certainly one of the more enjoyable art house films. 


Backyard

Backyard is a harrowing piece of film based roughly on the real life disappearance and murders of women just over the border in Mexico.  The sheer number is staggering and stuns the imagination.  What is even more stunning is the society of corruption that allows it to continue.  I think this is an important film to watch, but please watch the spanish version and not the subbed version.  Otherwise the poor voice work will grate and tear you away from an otherwise gripping tale!

The Loving Dead

"The Loving Dead," by Amelia Beamer is certain a very hip zombie book with its own special freak on.  Certainly not for everyone, it takes back the sex reserved usually for vampires and gives it to zombies.  Our heroes work all day at Trader Joe's and usually spend the nights at some party or tryst.  Well, one day suddenly zombie-ism as a venereal disease enter their lives.  Can they find safety or will they succumb to the allure of sex zombies?

Certainly it is a work that doesn't shy away from graphic depictions of sex and violence sometimes intertwined.  I can't decide if the work suffers or is helped by the characters hyper awareness of zombie mythology.  Sometimes it seems just a tad too arch, hip and ironic.  On the other hand it is fun when they find out these zombies are different from the normal template.  For example, the are cowed by the whips.  So I guess the kinky have a good chance of inheriting the earth.

The characters are well drawn, but is a well drawn shallow character something I want to read?  Well I did read the book but it is certainly not going in my top shelf.  If you like zombies, fine.  If you like erotic fiction, it will certainly be a different read from most.  Overall, it gains points in originality, but loses points cause anyone working at Trader Joe's doesn't really interest me.

http://www.amazon.com/Loving-Dead-Amelia-Beamer/dp/1597801941

We who are thankful salute you

I want to thank you all for your indulgence
I want to thank my friends for their patience
I want to thank my mother for wisdom
       my brother for his company
       my father for everything
I want to thank you world and thanks for the fish
I want to thank the dreamers to many to mention
I want to thank the visionaries
I want to thank the revolutionaries
       and now
I want to wish you all
a thankful restful loverly holerday

Today's Secret Code for November 23, 2010

"We miss you Dr. Gonzo, and Dr. Wilson, and Dewy, Cheatum, and Howe."  Again:  "We miss you Dr. Gonzo, and Dr. Wilson, and Dewy, Cheatum, and Howe."  Today's colour is iron coloured and copper tasting.  Today's author is just tired.  That is all, maho maho.

Monday, November 22, 2010

glad you are back!

Wow fellow blogger Cal had an experience.  Go over to his blog and give him a little love people!

http://calvinscanadiancaveofcool.blogspot.com/2010/11/rip-van-winkle.html

She Dances in Smoldering Darkness

In hell there is Burlesque, but when they finally take it all off.... well it all comes off.
An acquired taste.

Evie

Evie is a real cool star
you know she's going to go far
She is cool even when she's blue
because her lies are always true

operation P.R.O.M.

So, Last night was the end of this season of the Venture Brothers, and this time they pulled out all the stops. I mean this was wicked full of absolute ass whackery craziness. So full they had to make it an hour episode. I definitely feel this should be their future.

So, in the episode the Boys are now given official recognition that they have become men and not just boys. What better way to do this than a Home School Prom? If you think this road leads to disaster, then you are not far wrong. First Dean finds out that his crush now has her own boyfriend. Hank tries to score with the mail lady and fails. Looks like everyone is going to the prom stag.

Ah, but Dr. Venture has decided to rent a whole bunch of escourts for the evening and spike their drink with super science mutated spanish fly. Dr. Venture though is unhappy to find out that his name "Rusty Venture" is a code word for a nasty sex act. Unfortunately, no one can agree exactly what a Rusty Venture is and the descriptions become bleepably more elaborate.

Not everyone one is having fun. Col. Gathers is trying to get back in the OSI's good graces but his superior officer seems to have become the hulk and there are moles trying to take over the OSI. Number 21 is trying to bury his friend's skull and get rid of his ghost. As he's doing that Brock has to face the facts about his own one true love. It all ends in mayhem, explosions, and mutations.

Or just another Saturday night at the Venture Compound. I certainly hope there'll be another season but really this was the perfect ending. There was a lot of growing and hard truths. While not from this episode these two clips really show what the ventures are about. The Fantasy, and the reality.



Vatos and the walking dead

Last night episode of AMC's "The Walking Dead," was a bit hit or miss.  Not bad TV by any stretch but the tone kept shifting back and forth.  It begins with some first class survivor guilt back at the camp.  Two sisters are mourning their father while fishing on the most perfect lake in Georgia.  Meanwhile, another happy camper is digging a lot of holes.  A lot of person sized holes. 

This concerns the happy campers.

Meanwhile back in Atlanta, our Cop Hero, Wily Asian, Token Black Dude, and Crazy Cracker with a Bow, are looking for Merle AKA Crazy Cracker with now only one hand.  Following his trail is amazing as they discover all the things he did AFTER cutting off his hand.  Not many people are up for zombie killing after that, but Merle is made of sterner stuff and even cauterized his own wound.  Hopefully, we'll find Merle again later but right now we have other problems.  A bunch of home boys have just popped up to take the bag of guns but leave only with Wily Asian and an arrow in the ass.  Ouch.

Back at the camp Cop Hero's Friend Who Has Been Sleeping With Cop Hero's Wife And Has Control Issues aka Shane is handling things with subtly and aplomb.  Well, in actual fact he wrestles the Grave Digger to the ground, cuffs him, and ties him to a tree.  For his own good of course.  Meanwhile, the fellow that also had a bit of Shane's tough love is huddled in a tent counting his teeth and sorting making the moves on his daughter, luckily his wife now has a backbone infusion and they leave his sorry ass in the tent.

Sooo, in Atlanta there is talk of a hostage exchange, and neither side backs down.  Then from out of the left field an old lady spills the beans on who these tough homies actually are.  Won't spoil that, but i will say I was slightly let down cause it had the feeling of an after school special message.  Yeah, yeah, don't judge books by their covers.  But I reserve the right to judge guns by caliber.

Finally, there is some finality to some characters as they bask around the campfire at the camp.  Suddenly the dead swarm over them.  People die, dead are killed and it's about fifteen minutes of chaos and terror.  Sort of puts the kibosh on the whole we are going to make it let's hold hands and sing kumbaya feeling that was around early on this episode.  Will the next episode get even darker?  I do believe so.

News, and Deadly Hallows

First of, I hope all of you have safe holiday travel if you are traveling!

Second, an entry I have for Pitch of the Lamb along with other ideas for Mysteries are here at http://largeassmovieblogs.blogspot.com/2010/11/pitch-lamb-mystery.html

Finally, after the jump there's a field report from Rhonda on the New Harry Potter movie.  Definitely worth a look!


Today's secret code for November 22, 2010

"Bars make prisons or drinks, make sure you are near the right type."  Again "Bars make prisons or drinks, make sure yoau re near the right type."  Today's colour is rich.  Today's Author is poor.  That is all, maho maho.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

What comes up

What comes up
can crawl down
What follows
is often around

Witchy woman


A question of timing

When is it more important to have the keys?
When the gate is closed?
Or opened?

The Dead Keep Their Secrets Cold

Peter Lorre to Vincent Price at Bela Lugosi's funeral:

"Do you think we should put a stake in his heart. Just to be sure?"

Weird Japan and World Revolution

I cannot talk about how wonderfully weird Japan is without talking about Revolutionary Girl Utena. I'm afraid I might be a bore on this subject with my friends but like that sore tooth my tongue just cannot help to probe it again and again.

 
First and foremost, this is a perfect example of a show where everything is the same every episode but different. I would say a good thirty percent of each episode is reused footage. This should just kill the show, but it doesn't and the reason is one of the themes of this show is "rituals." The entire show is something like a big incantation.

 
But maybe I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me just check off the elements that make the show so interesting.

  1. First there is Utena who grew up wanting to be a ... Prince. 
  2. All this takes place at Otori Academy ("Otori" is another word for "Phoenix" which as we know continues to burn and then rise again)  Here there are almost no adults and at first it seems the only controlling authority is the Student Council.  Each member has a rose ring. 
  3. The game the student council plays is simple.  Each vie against each other in a series of duels for the hand of the Rose Bride.  It has been told to them by a mysterious benefactor that whomever controls the Rose Bride at the end will have the power to revolutionize the world. 
  4. The Rose Bride is Anthy who is an exotic looking woman and seems to be the most passive creature in existence.  She has no problems being controlled and used by others so it seems.  She only seems truly human around Utena but their relationship is ... odd.  Also she has a small blue mouse thing as a pet.    
  5. So, each episode one of the student council will challenge Utena.  There will be much drama and flashback about why that student wants to revolutionize the world.  Often much of that has to do with inappropriate relationships between siblings and let's leave it at that.  Then at the half time, there will be a weird little play put on by girls in shadow that may or may not have something to do with the plot.  Then There will be the opening ritual to start the duel.  Then the duel, and then the church bells will ring out who won and lost.  Rinse and repeat. 
  6. The second season took this formula and did the exact same thing but with a backward order of students involved.  Also the actual duelists were all the people most important in that duelist's life.  In the third season the reversed again with each original student getting a final shot at the rose bride.  There is also now Anthy's brothe who runs the whole school, and finally the end. 
  7. The movie.... great zeus.. the movie was sheer insanity.  It is only related to the tv series by theme as it takes the whole thing to a new level of weirdness.  Show me a movie where a car chase is used as a symbol of conception and birth, and I'll hand over the crown.  Until then this movie wins hand down for weirdness.
Anyway it's certainly worth watching.  It might be the only Jungian series on TV.  Think about that for a moment.


Here's the ritual to open the duel. Count the symbols good and gentle readers there'll not be a test later.



Pleasures of the Flesh

Thrillers tend to be twisted affairs.  People's passions turning in upon themselves bitting like maddened snakes.  It often creates a sense of tragedy watching people following down a road that at best will lead to hell.  "Pleasures of the Flesh," a 1965 japanese film directed by Nagisa Oshima certainly follows this design and one ups it.  This is less "O. Henry," and more "Oh this cannot be any good whatsoever."

It begins with a long bit of narration, but don't let that put you off because really it sets it all up so very nicely.  Our "hero," played by Katsuo Nakamura, is obsessed and in love with Shoko.  He has known Shoko for years now being her tutor when she was in high school.  He would do anything for her.  Shoko, though, doesn't know his depth of feelings and wound up marrying another man.  This stings a lot for our hero because of what he did for Shoko that she doesn't know. 

He has killed for her.

Oh he deserved it.  He was a child molester who came back to black mail the family.  Our hero offed him when he wouldn't back off.  Now though, he was seen doing it.  But the person who saw him was also a crook and comes up with an interesting use for him.  He gives him 30 million yen because the crook is about to go to prison.  The deal is simple, don't touch the suitcase full of money while the crook is in jail, or else the crook will drop a dime on who killed the child molester.

Unfortunately, after watching Shoko getting married, our hero no longer cares about living.  Knowing that the crook still has a year left in jail, he decides to spend all the money then kill himself.  He's doing this as a grand gesture, though really a card might have been better.  He starts paying a series of women a million yen a month to sleep with him.  This doesn't work out so well and he gets involved with even more shadey Yakuza type.  At the end, Shoko comes to him having heard he has lots of money.  Unfortunately, he had already spent that money on his big grand gesture. 

Let's just say the meeting doesn't go well.

Pleasures of the flesh is a noirish film that almost reaches an operatic level of self pity and excess.  Fair to say, I liked it.

Today's secret code for the 21st

"The trouble with being a superman is the kryptonite in your coffee."  Again:  "The trouble with being a superman is the kryptonite in your coffee."  Today's colour is ugly green.  Today's author is ready to stop a slow train at any rate.  That is all, maho maho.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Friday Group

Seances do not have to be conducted with the living

LOL saturday


Superman Shazam The Return of Black Adam

I liked this more than I thought I would, but that's because it is more parts than whole. Despite the title, the whole Superman and Shazam kabanga is just a small part. This is really a series of four shorts. There's one of the Spectre, Jonah Hex, and Green Arrow.

The Spectre is in many ways the most interesting. He's not a typical hero. He's more hero by way of Freddy Kruger. He's a dead man who embodies the spirit of vengeance and basically he can do whatever he likes. That means if you cross the Spectre you die. But you will die an interesting death. For example, being cut to shreds by your own stolen money. Superman definitely would not approve.

Jonah Hex, as written by western writer Joe R. Lansdale plays things fairly straight. Our bounty hunter is after someone who has already been killed. But Jonah is nothing if not the type to see a job go unfinished. Definitely more "For A Fistful of dollars," and less "Wild, Wild West."

Green Arrow is just a guy who is good with arrows and wants to be today's Robin Hood. In this short he wants to ask long time girl friend Black Canary for her hand, but folks are gunning for his head. This short really profits from a loser censorial tone and we see that arrows are definitely not a good thing to have sticking out your anatomy.

The title bout is pretty good. Both Superman and Captain Marvel (shazam) have the same sort of niche (in fact DC once successfully sued the makers of Captain Marvel into submission), and they work well together. Black Adam sort of looks like Spock crossed with Captain Marvel and he was sort of the first Captain Marvel before going bad. He doesn't like the idea of a new kid in town so he's trying to take care of it. A lot of good super hero throw down here.

The thing that makes this collection REALLY worthwhile is the special features. There they took other episodes from DC cartoons that featured these characters and put them together as sort of a second collection of shorts so you are basically getting a two for one and who doesn't like that?

Japan Is wonderfully weird

Speed Racer I remember you fondly.  I used to get up at five o'clock in the morning just to watch the thrilling adventures of Speed.  They were indeed thrilling, despite bad animation, incredibly bad writing and horrible comedy (no child above two could like spridle and chim chim, they were a waste of trunk space).  One thing was that it was the first "serious" cartoon I remember that had an on going plot.  Would Racer X ever reveal to Speed that he is secretly his brother?  Actually I shouldn't have put quotes around serious, I still remember clearly their "Drug" episode and Pop having to abuse Speed out of his addiction with pail after pail of ice cold water.  That's heavy stuff to a young kid.

Also, let's be honest, the cars were incredibly cool.  Who didn't want to ride the mach 5? 

Of course, memories are tricky things.  I've tried to watch them again, but the magic wasn't there.  It became something almost hurtful to the memories I grew to like more than the show was, so I stopped.  Some people never learn though and there have been several revivals and one unnamed big budget movie, but they couldn't catch that elusive spark either.

My Heaven

My heaven


is built
world by word
life by line

peers by page
souls by shelf


all is write
in my heaven

Futile is resistance. Assimilated you will be, yes. Yoda of Borg I am.

A few words on organized Crime in Santa Lucy

Given the nature of the law in Santa Lucy and the natural macho gallantry of the culture, women are very very rarely ever put in prison.  This has given rise to the Mothers and the Sisters.  The Mothers are the ones that actually run the crime families because they control the finances.  It is through the Mothers that all the loot from protection and other crime is laundered.  Before a girl becomes a mother though she is a Sister.  The Sisters are of course involved in prostitution but they are more importantly the messengers between the Mothers and the men.  Though it happens, it is considered bad form for a man to hit a Sister.  However, Sisters are free to attack each other at will and some are fabled for their cruelty.  No one crossees the One Eyed Cat of Madonna Street. 

Today's secret code for November 20th, 2010

"A boat floats, but a plane doesn't flane, nor a train flains."  Again: A boat floats, but a plane doesn't flane, nor a train flains."  Today's colour is on the go.  Today's author is knowning secret shady freud.  That is all, maho maho.

Friday, November 19, 2010

St. Oddity

The St. of oddness lives iin the hearts and in the stars of those who span where no one else would dare to go, and do so in style.

not all LOL are safe and cute

even LOLs can feel sorry

True Fact #17

Ghosts hate their own reflection, but can never turn away.

The wheels spins for all

More on Prison Life in Santa Lucy

As I said, the only prison on the island is run by the Brothers who are actual monks.  Their prison is very clean and hygenic.  The food is actually good and filling.  But no prisoner is given contact with any other prisoner.  Each is in his cell alone.  Worse, noise is prohibited.  If one makes this an issue they will be sorry.  The Brothers tend to be kind but if you shout about and make trouble you will find your head collared with smothering linens.  The only light in the cells are from above, from the sun and the moon.  It's a lonely way to do long time.  Not everyone leaves sane.  In fact, not everyone leaves.  Some find something there and join the Brothers.

Today's secret code for a chilly day

"The cold makes me feel old, the hearth makes me again bold."  Again:  "The cold makes me feel old, the hearth makes me again bold."  Today's colours are in the fire.  Today's author is warming himself.  That is all, maho maho.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

There's a little bit of her in her eyes

Old photos never lie
not that they don't try

Baby I'm going to be a star, baby you can drive my car....

In the city of Santa Lucy

There is a strange custom in that small city state located on a small island near brazil. In Santa Lucy a man can be found guilty of his crimes and not serve one day in the Brother's House of Correction, the only prison run by an order of monks. Instead, the guilty party merely has to produce anyone who would be willing to take his place in the Brothers and he can go free.

The slums of Santa Lucy are dangerous places, and many an innocent would rather brave the dark halls of the Brothers ... for a price.

The Last Airbender

I admit I haven't watched much of the TV show.  I plan to fix that.  But I did watch the movie, "The Last Airbender," and I found it mostly....harmless.  Given M. Night's efforts of late, isn't that the best anyone could hope for.

The Story of the last airbender as he and his friends fight the Fire Nation, is fairly easy to follow despite the best efforts of the director.  Children should really like the action.  It has some nice sets. 

Um....ok that's about it.

So what's wrong with it?  Well, the acting is pretty bad.  Like child pageant bad.  No one came out well in that department.  Not everything hangs together well narratively or as a matter of character motivation.  The dialog could be so leaden as to hold down the good year blimp.  The flying ox thingie doesn't look charming as it does in the stills I've seen of the TV series, but rather creepy.. like "where the wild things are" mutated with child stalker creepy.

Finally, as I said I don't watch the TV show.  But I know ONE thing, and it must just have driven the fans into a tizzy.  God Hopping Harry Mr. Shamalamadingdang, why change the pronouncation of the main character's name?  It must just grate against the true fan everytime they muck up his name.  It would be like watching a Dracula film where they keep calling the main character "Coont Drecula."

But on the whole, mostly harmless.

What D&D needed, more cursing

Japan is strange: Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl

When the front says "Has loads of exploding heads and gallons of fake blood.." you know you are in for something different.  The story is simple, nice looking high school kids finds himself in the middle of battle between the vampire girl and the frankenstein girl for his hand and his other body parts.  It's a tough match, vampire girl has hundreds of years of experience and an Igor, but the frankenstein girl has a mad scientist daddy and power tools.  Will anyone survive to date by the end?

This definitely falls into the "Gee that would look neat" school of film making rather than "does this make any logical sense" school.  I mean by the end, Frankenstein Girl is bolting legs on her head and spinning them to make a flesh helicopter.  Another plus is that it take some "real" sub groups of Japan and only tweaks them a little.  If you want to see what the goth lolitas are wearing you can just look right here.  Yes Japan you are very very strange.

Domo Arigato....

Today's secret code for Never ye mind the 18th

"Stars are our guides, and soon our neighbours."  Again:  "Stars are our guides, and soon our neighbours."  Today's colours are blue, white, yellow, orange, and red.  Today's author is bit dense.  That is all, maho maho.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A paradise

The Island of Manu Unam is a mysterious and magical place.  Come to the Rain Falls and listen to torrents that are caused by the daily rains upon the upland plateau.   The natives are friendly and good company.  Just remember to never shake with your right hand, never spit to the left, and never ever leave anything left in your cup.

WHEN LOL ATTACKS


Crazy eyes

Temple Grandin

Generally I am not a fan of films "about real life and real people," as it is often used as excuse when a film is "real boring." Also, if I wanted to see "reallife and real people," I could jus walk down the streets. Sometimes, however, real life can be so strange and singular that it couldn't be duplicated in fiction because no one would be able to suspend their disbelief.

The Life of Temple Grandin could be seen like that. A wonderful cockeyed miracle made from hard work and a different perspective. Claire Danes stars as Temple Grandin, and Temple Grandin has autism. It's a particularly high end form of autism, but still it doesn't make life easy for Temle Grandin.

This is specially true early on in her life where no one, including herself, has a handle on her condition. It's more than just autism she thinks almost entirely in pictures. This makes her see somethings like engineering very clearly, but it makes other things like learning french a real nightmare. She certainly isn't the type of savant we see in "Rainman." One thing she learns she has a certain empathy with animals. Her condition allows her to see, for example, what would spook a cow. Slowly, her understanding of her condition, her remarkable empath, and a hell of a work ethic come together to create a remarkable career.

Claire Danes has certainly done an incredible job with a role that could have just been fragile and shrill. Mick Jackson did a great job juggling the time and place to keep everything understandable. Also, one also has to thank Temple Grandin herself. It is her words from her books that form the spine of this film and she did a remarkable job communicating a whole new world. As an incredible plus, she is on the commentary track. It is a hoot to listen to her.

This is definitely worth a rental.

Japan is just soooo crazy

Today's Secret Code

"The cow goes mooooooo."  Again:  "The cow goes quack."  Today's colour is a jersey shade.  Today's author has a mousetache.  That is all, maho maho.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Gothic Batman

Warren Ellis was looking for a more steam punk/victorian version of Batman.  And here is my entry.  Definitely trying to scare the poo poo out of criminals who we all know are a cowardly and superstitious lot.