July 29, 2009


Fargo (1996, Joel Coen)

I'll cut the crap and start by stating my opinion on the film. After viewing it recently on IFC, it's in my top ten of all time. This was the first time I'd seen it in at least two years. That was before I was really into film. I had liked it, but didn't think it was great and kind of pushed it to the back of my mind. Now, it's right at the very Everything about it is perfect. I wouldn't go so far as to call it a dark comedy, but I would say it is a very funny dark drama. In particular, the dialog is very subtly hilarious.

The acting is amazing, particularly that of the truly gifted Frances McDormand (wife of writer Ethan Coen), the outstanding character actor William H. Macy, the also outstanding character actor and frequent Coen cast member Steve Buscemi, and Harve Presnell. The direction is also superb. Joel Coen's film is truly beautiful to look at.

The wood chipper scene is one of the absolute most disturbing things I've ever seen in a film. I instantly became nauseated by seeing it. That's truly about as gruesome as I can imagine a murder possibly being.

Is Fargo a masterpiece? As the film's spunky female cop protaganist Marge Gunderson (McDormand) would say, "you betcha!"

Hamlet 2

I was surfing through channels one night, and happened to come across Hamlet 2. I'd been interested in it when it was on theatres and at the rental store, but I always passed over it. I decided to watch it. Overall, I'm somewhat glad I did. There are certainly worse ways to spend an hour and a half. The film is very flawed, but enjoyable. It gets a little too stupid at times, but has some great moments. I'd love to have seen more of the actual play, instead of the misadventures of playwright/drama teacher Dana Marschz (Steve Coogan). The film comes across more as a homage to those annoying inspirational teacher movies, instead of a parody.

Coogan was okay. He's sometimes annoying, but he's likable enough. Catherine Keener, who plays Marschz's foul-mouthed alcoholic wife, is one of the weakest spots in the film. Her character is obnoxious, unfunny, and really doesn't serve much of a purpose. It's pretty frightening, by the way, how much Keener has aged since 2002's Death to Smoochy, in which she was flat-out hot. Elizabeth Shue was excellent as herself. Her performance, specifically her hilarious visit to Marschz's drama class, was the best thing about the film. And Amy Poehler, who is a very hit-or-miss actress/comedienne, is all hit here. She was great.

As for the music, I think "Raped in the Face" (yes, that's the name of the song) is probably in my 2008 song lineup now. That's the only Oscar nomination I would say that the film really deserves. "Rock Me Sexy Jesus", which was used in most of the TV spots and advertising for the film, was good as well, but sort of loses some impact after being heard on so many TV spots and trailers. The end credits number "Gay As the Day is Long" was ridiculously stupid, and feels like it was written by a dumb thirteen-year-old.

The film is like an R-rated version of another polarizing 2008 comedy-drama, Be Kind Rewind. Both films feature a kooky guy (or in the case of, Rewind, two kooky guys)'s unusual artistic visions, and the troubles they go through to create them. In both films, some people try to shut down the guy (or guys), while others stand behind them. Also, both films really should have been better than they are. If Trey Parker and Matt Stone had rewritten this for their friend and South Park colleague, the film's co-writer Pam Brady, it could have been excellent. As is, it's an amusing, but not great, little comedy, watchable at least once. 6.5/10

July 27, 2009

My Current Playlist

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There are 80 songs on this playlist. There's something for everybody, I guess, though it's all for me. Haha.

1. "Old College Try" - The Mountain Goats
2. "Going to Georgia" - The Mountain Goats
3. "Black Hole" - She & Him (Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward)
4. "Little Person" - Jon Brion (from the Synecdoche, New York soundtrack)
5. "Pink Moon" - Nick Drake
6. "Out of Gas" - Modest Mouse
7. "The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton" - The Mountain Goats
8. "Source Decay" - The Mountain Goats
9. "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?" - She & Him
10. "Rocky Raccoon" - The Beatles
11. "Trailer Trash" - Modest Mouse
12. "Let's Live for Today" - The Grass Roots (Creed Bratton from The Office was in this band!)
13. "Love Will Tear Us Apart" - Joy Division
14. "We Didn't Start the Fire" - Billy Joel (I like "Ryan Started the Fire" from The Office better, but playlist.com doesn't have it.)
15. "Little Boxes" - The Decemberists (theme song from Weeds)
16. "I Don't Want to Get Over You" - The Magnetic Fields
17. "World Spins Madly On" - The Weepies
18. "Jesus Christ" - Brand New
19. "I Was Made for You" - She & Him
20. "Young Folks" - Peter Bjorn and John
21. "There is a Light That Never Goes Out" - The Smiths
22. "All the Young Dudes" - Mott the Hoople (And unlike lame hipster kids, I actually liked this song BEFORE Juno came out.)
23. "Shine a Light" - The Rolling Stones
24. "Whiskey Lullaby" - Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss
25. "In Dreams" - Roy Orbison (Candy-colored clown they call the Sandman, tiptoes through my dreams every night.)
26. "Gospel" - The National
27. "Jenny" - The Mountain Goats
28. "Fault Lines" - The Mountain Goats
29. "My Body is a Cage" - Arcade Fire
30. "Wise Up" - Aimee Mann
31. "Life on Mars?" - David Bowie
32. "Little Motel" - Modest Mouse
33. "Copperhead Road" - Steve Earle (Every good playlist needs some Steve Earle, and playlist.com doesn't have "Hardcore Troubadour".)
34. "I Want to Hold Your Hand" - The Beatles
35. "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart" - Wilco (Possibly the best nonsense song ever made.)
36. "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" - The Beatles
37. "Definitely Maybe" - FM Static
38. "It Only Takes a Moment" - Michael Crawford (from Hello Dolly! and reused in Wall-E.)
39. "Say Yes" - Elliott Smith (Too bad it's the crappy live version.)
40. "21 Guns" - Green Day (I like Green Day. Shut up!)
41. "Aside" - The Weakerthans
42. "Jesus is Just Alright" - Doobie Brothers
43. "The Office Theme"
44. "White Rabbit" - Jefferson Airplane (I could listen to this song all day long and not get sick of it.)
45. "Jude Law and a Semester Abroad" - Brand New
46. "Teeth Like God's Shoeshine" - Modest Mouse
47. "The One I'm Waiting For" - Relient K
48. "In the Year 2525" - Zager & Evans (This song is probably the most moving song ever written. It gives me the chills every time I hear it.)
49. "Teenage Dirtbag" - Wheatus (Such a funny song.)
50. "It's the End of the World As We Know It" - R.E.M.
51. "The One I Love" - R.E.M.
52. "Colors" - Amos Lee
53. "Jed the Humanoid" - Grandaddy
54. "Comes a Time" - Neil Young
55. "Let's Dance" - M. Ward (Ward is the "Him" of She & Him.)
56. "Holland, 1945" - Neutral Milk Hotel
57. "His Dream" - Asher Roth
58. "As I Em" - Asher Roth
59. "Constructive Summer" - The Hold Steady
60. "Girls Like Status" - The Hold Steady (from the Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theatres sountrack)
61. "Cubs in Five" - The Mountain Goats
62. "Pale Green Things" - The Mountain Goats
63. "Diverse City" - TobyMac
64. "You Think You're a Man" - The Vaselines
65. "La Duchess Anne" - Grizzly Bear
66. "They Done Wrong / We Done Wrong" - White Rabbits
67. "No Cars Go" - Arcade Fire
68. "Yer Not the Ocean" - The Tragically Hip
69. "New Orleans is Sinking" - The Tragically Hip
70. "A Forest" - Bat for Lashes
71. "Incinerate" - Sonic Youth
72. "Who'll Stop the Rain" - Credence Clearwater Revival
73. "God Only Knows" - The Beach Boys
74. "The Man in Me" - Bob Dylan (The Dude's song from The Big Lebowski.)
75. "Glass Onion" - The Beatles
76. "Rodeo" - Garth Brooks
77. "The Distance" - Cake
78. "Born to Run" - Bruce Springsteen
79. "He Stopped Loving Her Today" - George Jones
80. "Hiroshima" - Ben Folds

July 19, 2009

An Evening with Tom Lehrer

I've just discovered Tom Lehrer. This guy is absolutely hilarious. I'd heard "The Elements" before, but I've begun listening to this playlist on YouTube, and he's so funny. The standouts are "Poisioning Pigeons in the Park", "So Long Mom (A Song for World War III)", and "The Masochism Tango".


The Proposal

This isn't much of a review, since there isn't really a lot to be said about this sort of film. It's an incredibly predictable and generic romantic comedy. There isn't anything new or innovative here. It's just your average "chick flick" romantic comedy. It's a pretty average film in all ways, except one. Betty White. The old girl completely steals the show! She's currently my Best Supporting Actress of 2009. She's every bit as funny as she was on The Golden Girls. Also, Oscar Nunez from The Office is in the film. For my money, he can stay at Dunder Mifflin. He is just not funny here. Bullock and Reynolds are okay, but I never really believed the chemistry was there. Malin Akerman was completely wasted as Reynolds' ex-girlfriend. In my opinion, she should have played Bullock's role, and this might have been a great film. I adore Malin Akerman. She's extremely cute here, but looks a little different. I didn't recognize her at first. Anyway, she's a great and mind-bogglingly gorgeous actress who could well win an Oscar someday, and I hope she does, but she is completely wasted here. Craig T. Nelson and Mary Steenburgen adequately enough fill their roles, I suppose. Denis O'Hare is incredibly irritating as an INS weasel. The film isn't very well-written or directed. Those are completely generic as well. There's nothing terrible about this film, but nothing good apart from Betty White. 5/10

July 18, 2009

A Trans-Europ Masterpiece

Trans-Europ-Express (1966, Alain Robbe-Grillet)

I'll admit I was a bit apprehensive about watching this one. I feared that it would be very difficult to get into and that I would be intimidated by it. What I expected to see and what I actually saw were two radically different things, thankfully. Trans-Europ-Express is one of the most entertaining films I've ever had the pleasure of seeing. I was sitting on the edge of my seat for the entire 91 minute runtime. It's an original, in-your-face, middle finger to genre conventions. This film covers nearly every single genre of film. It's action-packed, suspenseful, mysterious, dramatic, erotic, and even funny. It is also an extremely intelligent film, ambitious and adventurous without going overboard. I definitely spotted elements used by writer/directors such as Charlie Kaufman and Richard Kelly, who make genre-bending films similar to this one.

The film has two stories. One is about a three filmmakers riding the Trans-Europ-Express and trying to come up with an idea for a film. The other story, the best story, is their film. This is the most ingenious and clever usage of the "film within a film" concept that I have seen. This film not only breaks the fourth wall, it destroys every single brick on the damned thing.

There's really nothing for even the strictest film critics to complain about here. Every piece in the puzzle fits perfectly. The acting is superb, particularly that of Jean-Louis Trintignant, who plays Elias, the antihero of the film within the film. The film is beautifully shot. The fact that it is in black and white adds to the intrigue and the beauty. The musical score is outstanding, and the somewhat exaggerated sound effects compliment the film's style perfectly.

Trans-Europ-Express completely disproves the idea that art films can't be any fun. It's brilliant, witty, original, stylish, and extremely exciting. Anyone with even the slightest interest in film should see this. A glance at the IMDb page for the film reveals that the film has a 7.6 average with only 178 votes. That simply will not do. This film deserves a bigger audience. It's simply one of the greatest films I've ever seen. It will debut in my top fifteen, and could even go up in my rewatch. I am extremely grateful to two users on IMDb's Film General board: JesusPlayingGolf, for telling me to watch it, and fake_username, for uploading it onto Google Video. 10/10

2009 Awards Lineups at This Point

My awards at this point in 2009. I've seen 19 films from the year.

Best Picture
1. The Informers
2. Gigantic
3. Observe and Report
4. Watchmen
5. Sunshine Cleaning

Best Director
1. Gregor Jordan, The Informers
2. Zack Snyder, Watchmen
3. Matt Aselton, Gigantic
4. Jody Hill, Observe and Report
5. J.J. Abrams, Star Trek

Best Actor
1. Seth Rogen, Observe and Report
2. Paul Dano, Gigantic
3. Jamal Woolard, Notorious
4. Jesse Eisenberg, Adventureland
5. Sacha Baron Cohen, Brüno

Best Actress
1. Zooey Deschanel, Gigantic
2. Amy Adams, Sunshine Cleaning
3. Amber Heard, The Informers
4. Kristen Stewart, Adventureland
5. Jessica Biel, Powder Blue

Best Supporting Actor
1. Brad Renfro, The Informers
2. Jackie Earle Haley, Watchmen
3. John Goodman, Gigantic
4. Mickey Rourke, The Informers
5. Zachary Quinto, Star Trek

Best Supporting Actress
1. Betty White, The Proposal
2. Malin Akerman, Watchmen
3. Collette Wolf, Observe and Report
4. Sara Paxton, The Last House on the Left
5. Kim Basinger, The Informers

Best Adapted Screenplay
1. The Informers
2. Watchmen
3. Star Trek
4. Brüno
5. The Last House on the Left

Best Original Screenplay
1. Gigantic
2. Observe and Report
3. Sunshine Cleaning
4. Adventureland
5. Up

Best Animated Feature
1. Up

Best Animated Short Film
1. Partly Cloudy

Best Art Direction
1. Watchmen
2. The Informers
3. Gigantic
4. Observe and Report
5. Star Trek

Best Cinematography
1. Watchmen
2. The Informers
3. Observe and Report
4. Gigantic
5. Star Trek

Best Costume Design
1. Watchmen
2. Brüno
3. The Informers
4. Star Trek
5. Adventureland

Best Film Editing
1. The Informers
2. Watchmen
3. Observe and Report
4. Gigantic
5. Powder Blue

Best Makeup
1. Star Trek
2. Watchmen
3. Brüno
4. Terminator Salvation
5. The Informers

Best Original Score
1. Up
2. Powder Blue
3. The Last House on the Left
4. Star Trek
5. Watchmen

Best Original Song
1. "Dove of Peace" - Brüno
2. "The Spirit of Adventure" - Up

Best Sound Editing
1. Watchmen
2. Star Trek
3. The Informers
4. Up
5. Observe and Report

Best Sound Mixing
1. Watchmen
2. Star Trek
3. The Informers
4. Up
5. Observe and Report

Best Visual Effects
1. Watchmen
2. Star Trek
3. X-Men Origins: Wolverine

July 17, 2009


Ever since I saw the first trailer for Bruno, I fully expected to despise it. It just seemed so juvenile and homophobic. It didn't seem like it would have any of the charm and smart satire of Borat. I figured it would be awful, but my curiosity got the best of me and I had to see it. For most of the first 66 minutes of this 76 minute film, despite getting an occasional chuckle (a priceless scene involving Bruno at a anti-gay hate rally comes to mind), I thought I was right. However, those final ten minutes were better than anything in Borat. In particular, the closing "music video", featuring many special musical guests, is the hardest I have laughed at a film this year.

It's worth noting right now that this is NOT one for the kiddies. There is actual sex in this film. It's covered up with black boxes, but it's still there. It's probably the single most sexually explicit mainstream film I have ever come across, and is borderline pornographic at times. Those scenes are not funny, but just kind of disturbing. The fact that this did not receive an NC-17 is mind-boggling. I, despite my hatred for those bastards at the MPAA and for restricting films based on ages, believe that, under the MPAA's current (very flawed) standards, this film deserves the NC-17 rating.

I was afraid, based on the trailers and promotional material, that the film would be basically 80 minutes of gay jokes. There are indeed penis jokes galore, and there is plenty of very stupid humor, most of which I did not find funny. However, the film's main target is homophobia. Much like Borat mocked anti-Semites, rednecks, and ignorance, Bruno takes most of it's shots at homophobes. Bruno, despite engaging in some truly ridiculous and exaggerated behaviors, is a likable enough protagonist. He comes across more as a real, very flamboyant person than as a two-dimensional gay stereotype. Sure, he's pretty stereotypical, but he seems like a real person. He's just a lovable goof.

As I said, the first hour or so of the film is very inconsistent, with a few good bits but mostly mediocre or bad, but the "grand finale" makes up for those inconsistencies. Sacha Baron Cohen does a good enough job of playing Bruno. He's not Oscar-worthy, but not bad. The same can be said for the film as a whole. 7/10

July 16, 2009

"Wise Up"

I can't get "Wise Up" by Aimee Mann off of my mind. I watched Magnolia, my favorite film, again today, and this song is really on my mind right now. It's so beautiful and sad. It's very easy to relate to. Here's the lyrics, and a link to the song.


It's not
What you thought
When you first began it
You got
What you want
Now you can hardly stand it though,
By now you know
It's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
'Til you wise up

You're sure
There's a cure
And you have finally found it
You think
One drink
Will shrink you 'til you're underground
And living down
But it's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
'Til you wise up

Prepare a list of what you need
Before you sign away the deed
'Cause it's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
It's not going to stop
'Til you wise up
No, it's not going to stop
'Til you wise up
No, it's not going to stop
So just...give up

Happy Birthday, Eyes Wide Shut!

Today is the tenth anniversary of the release of one of my favorite films of all time, Stanley Kubrick's final masterpiece, Eyes Wide Shut. I believe it to be one of the single most underrated films ever made. It should be listed right near the top of Kubrick's filmography, with A Clockwork Orange and 2001. It's a monumental achievement. The acting is perfect, with career-best performances from the whole cast, especially Nicole Kidman. Her presence on the screen just exudes elegance and sensuality. Her monologues are particularly excellent, with my favorite being the "confession" monologue about a marine she sees at the hotel on a family vacation. It is worth nothing that Kidman, in 1999, may have been the most beautiful woman ever to walk this Earth. Tom Cruise's performance is great as well. Though it is not even his best work of 1999 (Magnolia), he does an excellent job playing Dr. Bill Harford, a doctor whose curiosity gets the best of him, leading to a bizarre mystery. The "costume party" (READ: orgy) sequence, is one of the most surreal and amazing scenes I have ever seen in a film. It's truly otherworldly. The depravity of the event, which is ritualistic in nature, is at a contrast with the sheer visual beauty of the sequence. I would have been happy if that scene were made into an entire film. The visual work and cinematography here is particularly astonishing, something Kubrick was always known for anyway. This could have been a cheap erotic thriller, but instead, it is a deep, mysterious masterpiece with some great insights and statements about marriage. The film takes several viewings, so that one can absorb and notice all of the details in the film. It is certainly Kubrick's most personal and long-in-gestation film. It is also arguably his best. That's truly an amazing feat -- the best film by the best director of all time. It is well worth keeping your eyes wide open for this masterpiece. 10/10

P.S. I'll be watching again it later today, and intend to write an essay on it.

July 15, 2009

Glenn Beck: A Domestic Terrorist

As this post's title says, Glenn Beck is truly a domestic terrorist. He's been cluttering our airwaves with his hate speech and severe mental issues for far too long. We must stop this man. I'm a defender of free speech, but the vile nonsense coming from this fascist pig's mouth is just complete violent hate, and nothing else. He's deranged. This is the man who said he hated the victims of 9/11 and their families. Pardon my language, but this man is a sick, sick bastard. That's the only way to put it, and even that misses the mark in terms of describing how loathsome this monster is. I am so angry because I just heard a clip of his radio show on YouTube, in which he screams nonsensically at a woman who is being perfectly reasonable about universal healthcare, which is something this country needs desperately. The woman states her opinions logically and calmly, and Beck goes completely, absolutely insane. Finally, the woman has enough of it and asks Beck "what the hell is your problem?". That's a great question. Glenn Beck, what the hell is your problem?

Here's that link. For the safety of your ears, keep the volume low. Viewer discretion is strongly advised. Do not expose children to this.


July 14, 2009


I forgot to include those links yesterday. As promised, here they are:

H2O - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9k8bksS2R10
Brumes d'automne - (Divided into two 6 minute parts) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_XSla0pIWo and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXzdcHQtjII&feature=related

Enjoy, my Disciples!

13 Tzameti

I am sorry that this is a very brief review, but it's really all I've got to say about this film. It's an incredibly uninteresting film. It was beautifully shot in black and white and had a decent premise. Those are really the only positives. It was very poorly acted. Many lines seem odd and forced, with the actors having little emotion. It seems that they were bored with the material they were given, which is understandable. There are numerous plot holes. The film is painfully dull in places, particularly the first half-hour. Also, the ending seems to have rendered the whole film completely pointless. I could only recommend this to someone with an obsessive cinematography compulsion. This is the first film I have seen from the Republic of Georgia, and I can only hope that the rest of the country's cinema is better. 4/10.

P.S. It's worth noting that the subtitles take up NO LESS THAN HALF of the screen. Not recommended, friends. Not recommended at all.

Shotgun Stories

Shotgun Stories is an emotionally draining, intense masterpiece that centers around three brothers named Son (Michael Shannon), Kid (Barlow Jacobs) and Boy (Douglas Ligon). When the brothers are small children, the father abandons them and starts another family in the same rural town and has four more sons, Cleaman (Michael Abbott, Jr.), Stephen (Lynnsee Provence), John (David Rhodes) and Mark (Travis Smith), leaving Son, Kid and Boy to be raised by their spiteful mother, who teaches them to hate their father and his other sons. When their father dies, the brothers attend his funeral, where Son speaks of how he walked out on them, followed by Son spitting on the coffin of the man who didn't even care enough about his first sons to give them proper names. This infuriates Cleaman and Mark and leads to a tragically violent feud between these two sets of brothers.

The film takes place in England, Arkansas, a quiet rural town seemingly stuck in time. It is possibly the most accurate depiction of the American heartland that has ever been captured on film. Images of beautiful farm land contrast with shots of sewage flowing into a river. The tranquil mid-twentieth century look of the rural town contrasts with the grim realities impoverished people living out of vehicles and tents. Thanks to cinematographer Adam Stone, all of the shots in the film look perfectly natural, without any flashy visuals or camera techniques. Overall, this area of the world is portrayed positively. There are no crass redneck stereotypes to speak of, and race is a total non-issue, with Boy coaching a youth basketball team featuring both black and white children. The majority of my family lives in a small Arkansas town not very far from England, so the film's setting resonates somewhat with me.

Michael Shannon's performance is one of the absolute best I have ever seen. Shannon, a gifted supporting actor, finally gets his chance to lead, and he does not disappoint. I would go honestly as far as to call his performance my favorite of 2008. Unknowns Barlow Jacobs and Douglas Ligon are excellent as Son's brothers, particularly Ligon, who gives a meaningful, yet unsentimental performance as Boy, a kind, very likable, impoverished man whose name seems to fit quite well, as he has never really grown up.

First-time writer/director Jeff Nichols, an Arkansas native, has created a true Southern work of art, which is a pretty rare thing. He has chosen to capture things and places we rarely see in films, and that is just one of the many reasons why Shotgun Stories is so special. 10/10

July 13, 2009

Two 1929 avant-garde films - H2O and Brumes d'automne.

These reviews are sort of companion pieces to one another. I consider the latter to be amongst my finest reviews, but I'll let you be the judge! Enclosed at the bottom of this post are links to watch both of the films on YouTube.

H2O (1929, Ralph Steiner) is very dull. Even at its short length of under ten minutes, it is still a chore to watch. There is really nothing interesting happening, and it is often very hard to tell what is going on. I have read that this was the filmmaker Steiner's intention, to create abstract art, but for it is far too abstract for my tastes. I am a fan of surrealism and experimentalism, and I realize that great art doesn't always have to have a point. However, during most of the duration of this film, the whole picture is too dark for one to even see what the heck is going on! There are some nice shots, especially in the last two minutes or so, but overall, it is uninteresting. The musical work is sublime, though, featuring some great takes on well-known classical pieces. Because of the score, this film is saved from being a total failure. I wouldn't watch it again, but I would definitely listen to it again. One can see where Steiner was trying to create great experimental art, but he was largely unsuccessful. I can really only reccomend H2O for those who enjoy staring at barely visible water for nearly ten minutes. 5/10

Brumes d'automne (1929, Dimitri Kirsanoff) is possibly the best avant-garde short film of all-time. It is one of the greatest films of any kind, that I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. It has so positive attributes, and no negative ones that I noticed. It is even better than Man Ray's Le Retour à la Raison, which I previously believed to be the gold standard for the quality of experimental short films. The title translates to "Autumn Mists", which the film is filled with.

Unlike most experimental works, Brumes features a clear protagonist. This unnamed character is played by the absolutely gorgeous Nadia Sibirskaïa. When we first meet this woman, she is burning papers in a fireplace. The papers are presumably letters from a lost love. Sibirskaïa's work here is a perfect example of how to act through body language. Through slight facial gestures and movements, she says so much more than words ever could. Her eyes tell the whole story for her.

Paul Devred's score is mesmerizing, and works perfectly with the tone of the film. It's also a very beautiful musical composition in its own right. However, the single most amazing aspect of the film is the cinematography by Jean de Mieville. The shots that feature water remind one of what Ralph Steiner's experimental short H2O could have been, and should have been. This film should be seen by all.

There is a real tragedy, far worse than the one in the film, and that tragedy is that there are very few people who are even aware of this film's existence, even fewer than are familiar with the director's 1926 film Ménilmontant. It is a true forgotten masterpiece. I will go so far as to call Brumes d'automne the greatest film of the 1920s that I have seen thus far. However, it is worth noting that I am still largely inexperienced in '20s film. 10/10


This is my blog. There are many like it, but this one is mine. Without me, my blog is nothing. Without my blog, I am nothing.

Hello, and welcome to Diary of a Mad White Nerd. I'm the resident lunatic. You can call me Matt, or Blake, and if you're really hot, you can call me anything you like. :P

So, I've finally decided to join the rest of the civilized world and get a blog. You're looking at it. Well, you will be when I'm done typing this and I post the link in various places around the intraweb.

This blog will mostly be used for my opinions on film and music, with the occasional political ramblings or off-topic randomness.

The URL name velvetmatt, is taken from one of my favorite films, Blue Velvet. I tried to come up with a better one, but I couldn't, so I didn't.

Feedback is not only encouraged and appreciated, but preferred. If you visit my blog, please let me know what you think of it.


Your humble narrator,