Sunday, 31 August 2014

New blog

Dear all,

I'm going to start a new project on the films of Alan Clarke. It will be a blog at first [] and then, who knows? His films have been obsessing me for a while, and there is very little out there about him or his work. So I thought I might as well write the texts I wanted to read etc.

As it goes on any feedback would be welcome. 

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Fascinating Horizon documentary on Mondragon from 1980. Not so much for Mondragon itself ( still looming large in the anti-capitalist imaginary 35 years later) as the tone, tenor and underlying assumptions of the piece.

Saturday, 3 May 2014

watched a bunch of Robert Altman films, most of them I think were on the boxset to pad it out really, but damned if this doesn't stick with me the most:

One of the best musical performances I can think of in as unlikely a vehicle as a Robert Altman teen comedy. Unsure of how the band and Altman became entangled but I'm not sure I want to really.

Friday, 25 April 2014

Back to the Future

Simon, via his own bloggige, bringing this article to attention, re '80s revivalisms as demo-trageting marketing trend. Which reminds me of why this is the one "decades blog" that I was always hard-pressed to ever contribute to.

 According to the marketing logic cited in the NYer article,  I should be winsomely nostalgic for the 1980s. It's the decade in which I went to high school, entered adulthood, finally got out of the shithole town I'd grown up in by eventually going off to college, & etc etc. Yet it's probably the one decade I feel the least the nostalgic about. Why? Because it was a totally shit decade. Because of the politics; because of the economics; because of all the shit music and shit fashion, all of which was inescapably hegemonic at the time due to the way media and culture worked in those days.

 All of which is why, quite frankly, I'm quite fine with seeing the decade being associated -- by way of the cited marketing campaigns -- the last place that most people would ever go to shop for electronics, a lowest-tier fast food chain, and a video game that is unanimously considered the worst in history. Seems only fitting.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Dearly Beloved, We Are Gathered...

Prince videos are few and far between on youtube, but he pretty much owned the 80s with his intros. His biggest, most bombastic album Purple Rain is basically a series of throat-grabbing intros, some of which seemed to have had songs added on later as an afterthought (though to be fair, a good few end rather spectacularly too, especially the epic title track). Love him or loathe him, and despite the various production tricks he used, you knew who it was as soon as you heard the first bar, until his mojo started to slip after the release of the hideous Batman soundtrack. In some ways, he's kind of like Martin Scorcese is to cinema: Even if the song itself is a disappointing dirge, chances are the flamboyant intros will pack a punch at the very least. The calling card of the consummate showman.