My top 25 of 2010

•January 2, 2011 • Leave a Comment

2010 was a hell of a year for music, folks, this top 25 only scratches the surface really. Click on my track picks for a download.
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Dying together is even more personal than living together

•November 14, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Alfred Hitchcock is a very important figure in cinematic history. He was The Master, a person whose films were so rigorously constructed that he grew bored of making them, that he felt the need to complicate his films to challenge himself. This led to the shrinking space of Lifeboat Continue reading ‘Dying together is even more personal than living together’

…but for the accident of birth, you might be as they are

•March 21, 2010 • Leave a Comment

The inevitable discussion when Tod Browning’s Freaks comes up is that you could not make this film today for reasons of political correctness, but the truth is it was not all that acceptable then either Continue reading ‘…but for the accident of birth, you might be as they are’

We deal in lead, friend.

•January 29, 2010 • Leave a Comment

On the commentary track to Magnificent Seven, director John Sturges is quoted as saying, ‘I thought we were making movies, not history.’ You wouldn’t know it from his pictures, though Continue reading ‘We deal in lead, friend.’

THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST of 09

•December 30, 2009 • Leave a Comment

1. Tom Waits: Glitter and Doom
http://www.amazon.ca/Glitter-Doom-Live-Tom-Waits/dp/B002QJX33O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1261782927&sr=8-1
Tom Waits has always been awesome, but he has also grown into his awesomeness more and more as time has passed. He was practically a standard-issue crooner when he debuted, but then whiskey and cigarettes very rapidly turned his voice to that bourbon rasp we all know and love, and it only got raspier over the years. His anarchic, weird humour and his sense of beauty and tragedy in the everyday became more honed and his songwriting grew weirder and more original. So it should be no surprise, really, that an album of him performing many of his great songs live trumps anything else to come out in 2009. The arrangements are generally quite different from the original studio versions and the icing on the cake is the fantastic second disc entitled ‘Tom Tales’ which is half an hour of him telling jokes and stories to the audience plus a beautiful take of “Picture in a Frame” at the end.
Song pick: “Dirt in the Ground” – This song originally from his classic Bone Machine album was never so weighty and powerful.
Continue reading ‘THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST of 09’

This road goes all around the world

•December 19, 2009 • 2 Comments

I have a fascination with gay cinema – from the earliest transgressive hints in Die B├╝chse der Pandora (Pandora’s Box) to the fevered imagination of Kenneth Anger to the overheated, closeted homoeroticism of the likes of Top Gun, it’s a pocket universe of cinema that is unique and almost perpetually metaphorical. Perhaps it intrigues me so much because of that. Continue reading ‘This road goes all around the world’

Silent Cinema: Buster Keaton in The General

•November 18, 2009 • Leave a Comment

The General

There is a moment in Sunset Boulevard where Buster Keaton makes a cameo, playing bridge in Gloria Swanson’s house with a table of washed-up silent film stars. Continue reading ‘Silent Cinema: Buster Keaton in The General’