Archive for January, 2006

Sunday, January 29th, 2006

Dan Simmons – Hyperion (1)

An excellent crossover between literary history, theological treatise and captivating worldbuilding science fiction, the only shortcoming of this book is that it ends just when things start to become interesting. Not until the last few pages did I realize that the confrontation with the frightening entity called the Shrike, the opening of the Time Tombs […]

Sunday, January 29th, 2006

Vincenzo Natali – Nothing (3)

What a strange movie. Reminiscent of the director’s earlier “Cube”, this has less of the grim deadliness, and more levity, but also a bit too much jumpy goofiness for the sake of its central metaphor. It’s the story of two underdog friends living in a derelict house between two freeways in Toronto, who one fateful […]

Saturday, January 28th, 2006

Rome (2)

I don’t know a whole lot about Roman history, nor about the small details of everyday life in the days when the republic turned empire, but this series does quite a good job of creating a believable backdrop for Caesar’s conquests and the adventures of the two soldier goons who carry the show through wit […]

Saturday, January 28th, 2006

Jigsaw Pieces

5 Die Ampel schaltet, als ich beinahe die Kreuzung erreicht habe, und ich bringe das Rad erst in der Mitte des Fussgängerstreifens zum Stehen. Niemand überquert die Strasse hier, ich bleibe also stehen und warte auf die nächste Schaltung. Während des Wartens erinnere ich mich, dass man auch in Kalifornien auch bei Rot rechts abbiegen […]

Tuesday, January 24th, 2006

Everyone’s Waiting (2/3)

I lost interest in this overblown, thickly layered soap opera somewhere in season two, but when I heard that the final episode was exceptionally well done, and the bothersome Nate would finally die, I thought it might be nice closure to watch it. Unfortunately, the, err, video supply store, accidentally delivered the final episode of […]

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

Neal Stephenson – Cryptonomicon (2)

This book has it all, geeky and cool facts about cryptology, military, social and technological history, a fairly believable conspiracy plot, insights into high-tech investment politics and an epic breadth and richness of materials that stunds. So why did reading it feel so tedious, and why was I glad when it finally was over? Maybe […]

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

Richard Brooks – In Cold Blood (2)

This is an almost literal translation of Capotes book to the screen, and it compares very favorably both with his writing, and the recent movie “Capote”, about his own role in the trial of Hickock and Smith and the role of the book in his life. Some odd choices aside (why did the script change […]

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

Martin Scorsese – Kundun (2)

This biopic of the Dalai Lama would impress me much more, and be a much more valuable contribution to understanding and solving the plight of Tibet, if it didn’t look like Cirque de Soleil on dope. While I can’t blame the traditional garments and designs of Tibet for having been appropriated to an updated version […]

Wednesday, January 18th, 2006

Xan Cassavetes – Z Channel (2)

This is a very entertaining and cinematically inspiring movie, but oddly that’s not due so much to how it tells its tale – which, in fact, drags a bit toward the end, and could have lost a few of the lengthier asides – but to what that tale actually is. The history of LA based […]

Tuesday, January 17th, 2006

Doug Liman – Swingers (2)

The first part of this felkt like someone had invented a new cipher for social communication and forgot to tell me about it. Nothing anybody said seemed to make any sense not within the plot, not as commentary. But eventually the fog lifted (it might have just been the fog of history, anyway), and everything […]