Previously I was in Hong Kong and Seoul, and now I am in Tokyo :)
I’ll be here until Monday - what should I do/see/eat? Anyone have requests for stuff you’d like me to pick up for you? I was going to head down to Kyoto for a couple days, but with the typhoon coming I might as well stick around here at least until Thursday afternoon, and fulfill requests.
Saw this with a co-worker at the end of a long work week (I’m now working 8-4 every weekday and 10-5 every Saturday, plus commuting time, which is why I haven’t been posting here much). I thought it was going to be a stupid three-hour blockbuster, like Apocalypto or 10,000 B.C., and it was in a way, but it was also WAY weirder, so when Darren Aronfonsky’s name came up in the credits I was like oh yeah that explains it.
The main thing that makes the movie weird is that it completely lacks the three-act structure of a modern blockbuster movie, or really any sense of cinematic pacing at all. Many individual scenes do have a dramatic build, especially the ones that develop Russel Crowe/Noah’s puritanical zealotry*, but there was also a tendency after about the halfway point to try to wring maximum melodrama out of EVERY domestic scene, which leaves you-the-viewer with no sense of which scene is a “climax” and therefore no sense of when the movie is going to end.
(After the Ark reaches land, presumably - but then the movie continues for another half an hour, RoTK style.)
Spoilers behind the cut!
cover art by stephanie folse
cardiff park by stephanie folse
It’s the beginning of an even-numbered month, and you know what that means… new issue of IB!
I personally think this is a strong issue, particularly because “no one writes” utopias anymore. We got a variety of moods and approaches, and (again IMO) all of the stories are worth your time… except maybe for the one I wrote to make up the issue count, you can skip that one. :p Make sure you read all the way to the end! And big ups to the contributors, as always.
‘B.B.B (Big Baby Baby)’ by Dal★Shabet is my new jam.
cover by brat farrar
It’s up, it’s up!
The stories in this issue are a little bit sad, matching the cold weather outside. The first one is very cute, though, and the last one is touching — *and* has a credible mystery plot! IT’S GREAT SO JUST READ IT, OKAY.
Ahem. Fox and Wolf is the sequel to The King’s Daughter’s Wedding, in case you were wondering what became of the Princess and her loyal Fox. The Lives of Animals is a short, sweet mood piece.
Lastly, there’s some art from the son of my editor at The Hooded Utilitarian. Noah, if you’re reading this, send some web traffic our way, would you?
T.O.P - DOOM DADA
2013: A T.O.P. odyssey…
Madeleine Lee: Four years ago, "Turn It Up" was left for dead, baking in the desert; now it returns, staggering, loopy and vengeful. The heavy beat and one-note chorus have warped and darkened into a drone. Fashion (Givenchy, McQueen) has aged into art (Basquiat, Kubrick), and the preening messages of seduction have dissolved into a cut-up that layers images of nuclear apocalypse against a recitation of the Korean alphabet in the space of a verse. In the end it’s more noise than signal, but the endless repetition of the title is true dada: an incantation against order, an excitation to an action that never arrives, and ultimately, its own obliteration.
Alternate blurb: “How does one achieve eternal bliss? By saying dada. How does one become famous? By saying dada. With a noble gesture and delicate propriety. Till one goes crazy. Till one loses consciousness. How can one get rid of everything that smacks of journalism, worms, everything nice and right, blinkered, moralistic, europeanised, enervated? By saying dada.”
That alternate blurb is amazing! YOU’RE A GENIUS.
(In other news, I haven’t been writing much for TSJ even when it’s been a song I know something about, but I made a special effort for T.O.P. Because, T.O.P.)