Photobucket           Photobucket           Photobucket           Photobucket

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Blue Light Yokohama

Howdy.

I dunno what happened in the last nine or so hours but it did not feel like I slept at all last night. I blame it on work - I came home from work at 1.30AM with a pounding headache. Worst. Oh and last night I DREAMT I WAS STILL AT WORK, so that really didn't help my case either.

------------

I didn't really get up to much this week other the usual - consumption of games, films, television shows etc. The only mildly fun thing that happened was going to my friend's apartment on Wednesday to have a home-cooked dinner with some friends. After dinner, one of my mates and I ended up playing Super Smash Bros on the Nintendo 64 for the longest time. If anything, it makes me want to get a GameCube and/or Wii so that I can play Smash at home along with a bunch of other fantastic Nintendo titles. Actually, I just really want to own Nintendo products now... Shopping spree, here I come!

------------


Madman announced that they'll be running the Reel Anime again this year! The last time they ran the film festival was in 2010 where they had showings of "Evangelion 2.0" and "Summer Wars", two of my favourite films of that year. This year, they'll be screening four excellent films, two of which I have been super excited for. The films that will be screening include, "From Up On Poppy Hill" directed by Goro Miyazaki, "The Wolf Children" directed by Mamoru Hosoda, "Children Who Chase Lost Voices" directed by Makoto Shinkai and "Beserk: The Egg of the King". If you're in Melbourne, Reel Anime 2012 will be screening sometime in September (date yet to be confirmed) and they'll most likely hold it at the Cinema Nova in Carlton. 


-----------


Speaking of anime, I started watching "Welcome to the NHK". Really, really bizarre anime about a guy who has shut himself away in his apartment for four years, believing that a conspiracy has been made against him to become a hikikomori until one day he encounters a girl who says she can help him overcome his hikikomori status. I'm ten episodes in and everything that has happened is so strange yet so interesting. In some ways, this show compliments "Eden of the East" albiet with a lot more humour and less action. It's an outrageous anime but I'm really digging it right now. 


------------


Oh and I finished "Chrono Trigger" this week and am now playing the spirital sequel, "Chrono Cross". Really enjoyed "Chrono Trigger" even if it did fee a bit too easy for a JRPG. Still, its a hugely enjoyable game and I'd be really keen to try it out again to get a different ending. "Chrono Cross" is a bit more difficult in that there is a bit of a learning curve when it comes to the battle system. It seems really deep and intricate which I would presume makes strategy and gameplay all the more engrossing but right now I'm only two hours into it and haven't truly exploited the gameplay mechanics just yet. Also, despite only being two hours in, I'm already in love with the soundtrack. I'd download it but those soundtracks usually have some spoiler-y titles for each track so I'll hold off on that until I manage to finish the game itself. 


------------

Also, does anyone actually like my new banner? I'm pretty happy with it, I mean its something different (the Game of Thrones one I had for almost a year or so, I think). Anyways yeah, lemme know what you think. 
___________________________________________________________________________


WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING

This week, I managed to finish my Takeshi Kitano boxset that I bought a while back and managed to pretty much be up to date with all of Hirokazu Kore-eda's feature films, with the exception of "I Wish" which I have planned to watch at this year's Melbourne International Film Festival instead of seeing it at home (which would make it my first Kore-eda film on the big screen!). That said, this week I watched, "Hana", "Boiling Point", "Still Walking" and "Sonatine".


-----------



Of all of Hirokazu Kore-eda's films, "Hana" is probably the most unfamiliar and unlike the rest of his films. Consequently, this also makes "Hana" the filmmaker's least accessible films which inevitably renders it into a state of mediocrity. Unlike his other films where there seems to be a clear focus and even if the story does veer off into other areas (such as in "Air Doll"), "Hana" doesn't have that much going for it. It's a simple samurai picture done in the minimalistic, low-key style of Yoji Yamada's much more powerful and poignant "The Twilight Samurai" but Kore-eda trades in "The Twilight Samurai's" bravura and drama for a more family-oriented and humourful film. Gone are Kore-eda's fascination with loss, grief and death. Kore-eda instead focuses on period-specific nuances such as duty, familial pride and honour. There's a fun side story involving a group of men who hide out in the rundown town that the characters of "Hana" reside in who turn out to be part of the historic "47 Ronin". I guess I was bound to encounter a bad Kore-eda film at some point but I wasn't expecting "Hana" to be as disappointing considering his almost perfect track record. 




-----------


When "Violent Cop" was made, a lot of the Japanese public couldn't shake the concept of funnyman Takeshi Kitano out of their heads and every time he appeared on screen, people laughed not because of what his character was doing but just cause it was him and they couldn't take him seriously. It upset Kitano so much that he reacted by creating, "Boiling Point". It should be noted that "Boiling Point" is the first film that Kitano wrote and directed (he only re-wrote "Violent Cop" from an already existing script) so its the first film to really have his authorship over it and for that its something to really appreciate. The shots that Kitano experimented with (framing his characters off centre as talking heads with plenty of negative space around them) Having said that though, "Boiling Point" is probably one of his most bizarre and alienating films (at least of the ones that I've seen). The film isn't all that great from my point of view - the story's a complete mess and the characters are all generally uninteresting. It also doesn't help that much of the acting is largely poor, save for Kitano who just so happens to play one of the most despicable and unlikable characters he's ever played - a gangster who sodomises and rapes women at his own pleasure. It's a hard film to sit through and I'm not sure I could ever come back to it again.


-----------


"Still Walking" is the film that Westerner's speak a lot of when it comes to Hirokazu Kore-eda. To date, it is the only film of his that has actually been picked up by the prestigious Criterion Collection and while there are DVDs of his earlier films, including "After Life" and "Maboroshi no hikari" that have floated around in the Western world, they have largely gone unnoticed by a lot of film goers which is disappointing as Kore-eda has established himself as a talented director whose observations on life and death are exemplified with touching sincerity. Roger Ebert himself has dubbed Kore-eda the natural heir to Yasujiro Ozu, a Japanese director in the 1950s and 1960s who established himself as one of Japan's elite directors for his "home dramas". "Still Walking" is a fantastic film about a family who have come together to honour the memory of a loved one who passed away fifteen years prior. The film shares many similarities to "Distance" but the subject matter here is more concentrated and the situation more isolated than in "Distance". And while there are many times where the film could have fallen into the potential traps that family dramas such as this fall into (usually climaxing with a massive argument between the family), Kore-eda instead breaks down the escalating drama into bit increments throughout the film giving it constant life throughout. Kore-eda presents his subjects as they are and shows his characters' best and worst traits. No one in the world is perfect, not even the most amiable of us and the death of a loved one can change our perspective on a lot of things and how we treat others. "Still Walking" is a master work of filmmaking and ranks as one of the director's best films, if not the best. A subtle mediation of the Japanese family, loss and grief - a powerful film in the most minimal way possible. Richly rewarding.


-----------


"Sonatine" is the film that really got international audiences turning their eyes on him. The film is about a gangster who is asked to head down to Okinawa to settle a gang war but ends up laying low at a beach house until talks between both gangs settle down. Tired with his gangster lifestyle, he ends up enjoying what ever time he has left. "Sonatine" takes a step back, looks at the yakuza/gangster film from afar and the meaning of it. You can have all the "Crows Zero" films in the world but for all of violence and action in those films they'll never amount to the level of depth and nuance to which "Sonatine" attains. Death is constantly following Murakawa, the gangster that Kitano plays but he has learned to not be afraid of it and he embraces death as a welcome way to end his tired life as a gangster. All the flash and spectacle of being a gangster is disillusioned by the way in which the violence itself is displayed with Kitano's signature style - sudden, random and all over in a matter of seconds. In some ways, you could interpret this as being a metaphor for Kitano being tired with having to prove himself as a serious filmmaker/actor and trying to overcome his comedic roots. That said though, I was hoping to come away with an amazing film in "Sonatine" and while I most definitely enjoyed it and saw the intelligence behind it, I felt it was underwhelming even when compared to "Violent Cop", despite all of that film's flaws. The last three Kitano films I've seen have been rather underwhelming which is disappointing. Here's hoping when I finally do get around to watching "Hana-bi" that it all changes. "Dolls" is still my favourite Kitano film though simply cause it's un-Kitano like.

___________________________________________________________________________

TIDBITS OF FILM NEWS

Just trailers for this post so pick and choose which ones you'd wanna check out. Trailers included here are for "Taken 2", "Dredd" and "Monsters University". Now... go!



___________________________________________________________________________

And that ends this post. Today's title is brought to you by Ayumi Ishida, a song from the late 60s (?) that was included in the film, "Still Walking". I liked it. I dunno. Anyways go watch "Still Walking". For real.


End post.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Got Nothing Coming

Hello.


Thursday night I went to see Wolf and Cub live at The Toff. I've been to the Curtin House building before but mostly for the Rooftop Bar. A friend of mine invited me to the show but I hadn't heard of the band beforehand so I pretty much went into the gig blind. Hadn't been at an actual live show in a long time so it was good to be out hearing some live music again (the MSO performance a few months back doesn't count!).

I liked 'em for the most part - their sound reminded me of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. But I preferred the opening act, Machine much more. They were just two guys who performed an entirely instrumental set that was so amazing - really hypnotic and atmospheric. They're much better live than they are on their actual EP, I found, but that doesn't matter. If you want to give Machine a listen, just head on over to the link provided.

------------

Wednesday night was the public screening of my documentary which was good fun. It was great to see and hear the doco in a more social environment as opposed to a serious discussion/critique environment in class. I'm thinking of maybe uploading it and sharing it but I don't have a hard copy of it myself and am hoping someone in my group has one. Afterwards, a friend and I rendezvoused to another bar and we had a nice time catching up over drinks.
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING

I really wanted to be able to have a week of just Takeshi Kitano / Hirokazu Koreeda films but I had a lot of things get in the way of it. I was able to watch two of the six planned films though but if this is indicitave of anything, it just means that I'll probably have less time to watch films even during the holidays as well. I certainly hope this isn't the case but we'll see.

Now as much as I'd love to write up a fully-written review of the following films, I'm just super tired writing this right now. It'll take me forever to actually be able to articulate myself so I'll just leave it in dot-point form.

  • Another fantastic film by Hirokazu Koreeda, one of Japan's best directors working today.
  • The film follows a group of people who every year visit the forest in which their loved ones inhabited while they were in a cult to honour their loved ones' memories and reconcile. 
  • Deceptively misleading in the beginning, the film's first half hour feels like a horror film but once it dips its toes into the second act, its smooth sailing from there.
  • I think this film, moreso than his other films, really hammers across his signature style - the marriage of documentary filmmaking and fiction filmmaking. 
  • It may be a bit alienating for first time viewers but as someone who really appreciates his method, I have to say that I thought it added some gravitas to the film.
  • Especially when there is little to no narrative in the film.
  • For me, this film was about the mysteries and unanswered questions that our loved ones leave behind once they pass away.
  • In some ways, its quite similar to Maboroshi no hikari, Koreeda's debut feature film, as this film also explores how death affects us and how people may respond to it.
  • Beautifully shot and superbly acted, Distance is another triumph for this Japanese director. 

------------

  • I personally think that Violent Cop hasn't aged all that well but it's still a rather enjoyable film.
  • It's Kitano's debut feature film and it's always interesting to see the first film in what would become a legendary film career.
  • Sure his style hasn't been fully developed but it's certainly there.
  • There are a few problems that the film encounters in terms of its narrative but Kitano's bravura performance as Azuma is not to be taken lightly.
  • Would you able to categorise this as a noir though? It certainly has elements of it.
  • And correct me if I'm wrong but I believe this is the first film where the Japanese were taken back by Kitano's ruthlessness in the film because they were accustomed to seeing him as this jovial comedian on television.
  • Anyways it's a great debut for Kitano as he would pretty much cement himself as a badass in his later feature films.
  • Comparisons between this and Dirty Harry are pretty much spot on though.
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

I'll leave out Tidbits of Film News this week as I can't recall there to be much happening this week. Anyways, this blog post's title comes from Wolf and Cub. Enjoy and have a cracker week ahead.


End post.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Anticipation

Howdy all.

Meld Magazine - Melbourne's international student news website

I have had quite the busy week but I've been very happy with how things have turned out for me. On Monday, I met with Karen, founder and editor-in-chief of Meld Magazine to discuss opportunities for me to contribute to the website. I think the plan is for me to come in every Monday to meet the rest of the team, see who I'll be working with and hopefully be able to put up some work of my own up there! We'll see where it goes but it's a pretty exciting venture.

------------

On Wednesday, I attended a film review workshop hosted by SYN which was somewhat helpful although most of what the speakers said had been already covered in one of my subjects from last semester. I met Nat from one of SYN's flagship shows, Arts Mitten, and we talked about the possibility of allowing me to have a segment on the show about Asian cinema. I just need to come up with something to present and hope it gets through.

------------

And then on Thursday I began a new volunteering position with ACMI in their offices as a public programs administrative volunteer. It's not as boring as it sounds, in fact I quite enjoy it since it's a huge change from what I normally do at work. I'll be staying on with them for three months and in a lot of ways it almost feels like an internship (and I'm gonna treat it like that). Everyone I met at the office was friendly and, so far, the tasks I've been doing haven't been so taxing. Afterwards, I met up with Ellen and we had a nice catch-up over some ice, haha.
------------

Bought this today. This is the rare case where I actually WANT TO FEEL EMOTIONALLY DESTROYED AGAIN. Shame and I hope the high-def transfer justifies the quality of the film.

Picked up a copy of "Shame" on Blu-ray during my lunch break on Thursday. I've gushed enough about how much I love this film and you'd think that I wouldn't want to watch such an emotionally draining film again but I'd gladly revisit it. Unfortunately, the Blu-ray transfer isn't all that pretty and the video isn't quite the high-def quality one normally comes to expect from Blu-ray. So that's pretty disappointing. Kinda makes me wonder if the UK transfer of "Shame" would be better...
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

THOUGHTS ON E3 THIS YEAR

gamergirl95:

askmajora:

askfiercedeity:

asklord-ghirahim:

banbangds:

How can an ageing Japanese man be so kawaii?

He’s Shigeru Miyamoto. What other reason do you need?

((old yet still kawaii the power of Shigeru miyamoto))

((Okay, when I saw the intro to the Nintendo conference, I was girlishly laughing and squealing
It was so effing cute. This sealed the deal owo))

he is just so amazing. i love him. XD

It was that time of the year again this week where gamers all oogle at all the new toys and all share in the excitement of E3. Whether you're on the show floor or at home enjoying the event through a live stream broadcast, the hype surrounding E3 is usually pretty awesome. I have been blogging about E3 the last few years now and this year will be no exception. I've lost some sleep along the way staying up for some of the conferences but that's okay.

------------


I only got around to watching Sony and Nintendo's press conferences this year though and wish I would have stayed up for Ubisoft's conference just to experience the announcement of the surprise no one was expecting, "Watch Dogs". Man that must have been exciting. "Watch Dogs" had everyone talking and people were speculating whether or not what we saw was really showing off a game for a next generation console. And with good reason, I mean just watch this:

Are you not entertained?

I got major "Ghost in the Shell" vibes watching that gameplay demo. It looks to be set in an open-world environment too, leading people to call this game "Deus Ex" meets "Grand Theft Auto". Cool, right? Additionally there's a trailer that doesn't necessarily give away story or gameplay but does effectively contextualise the game and gives it a form of relevancy.

------------


Sony's conference started strong with the reveal of "Beyond: Two Souls" a game developed by Quantic Dream who produced "Heavy Rain". As revealed in the conference, it is said that the game will follow the life of a character and lead us to questions concerning "the after-life". Details about the game were quite vague but a quick explanation of the game was followed by the reveal of Academy Award nominated actress, Ellen Page, providing her acting talent to the video game which proved to be a very interesting move as one of the key critiques of "Heavy Rain" was the performance captured acting of the people involved. So that news definitely gave the project some reverence in terms of actual acting talent. This was then followed up with a lengthy trailer of the game that looked amazing as far as graphics is concerned. I daresay that Quantic Dream may have used the same facial capturing techniques utilised in "L.A. Noire" but have taken it a bit further.


------------


The Sony conference  lagged in the middle with the curiously bewildering "Wonder Book" - an augmented reality type of peripheral for the Playstation 3 - but finished with a bang thanks to the debut gameplay trailer for their upcoming survival game, "The Last of Us". Naughty Dog, who've really set the bar, as far as cinematic gameplay is concerned, with their hugely successful "Uncharted" series have done it again with "The Last of Us" and really impressed audiences live in attendance and watching at home (I know I had a goofy smile the whole way through!). All the little nuances they've incorporated into the game are fantastic and add so much more depth into the style of gameplay you're meant to adhere to (that being survival! you can't just run and gun and think you'll come out unscathed). For me, "The Last of Us" is essentially "The Road" but less depressing, more sunny and has no cannibals. I think Naughty Dog have gone on record to say that they were inspired by films like, "28 Days Later" and "Children of Men" while making the game. Fair enough.


------------


Another highlight was "Star Wars: 1313". Essentially, the game is "Star Wars" with "Uncharted"-style gameplay. Not much is known about the game other than the fact that you play as a bounty hunter in a mature "Star Wars" game. The game wasn't shown off that much but what really impressed me (as I'm sure it did with most people) was the graphical output of the title. Incredibly detailed and textured with seamless transitions between cutscene and gameplay, "Star Wars: 1313" was another game that had people speculating as to whether or not a game like this was meant for current systems (reps from Lucasarts admitted that they were running the demo on PC). Here's hoping "Star Wars: 1313" is as awesome as it looks.


------------


And can we just appreciate the existence of "Lego City Undercover" for a moment? It's essentially "Grand Theft Auto" minus the adult content and completely Lego-fied. It just looks ridiculously fun even if it is aimed at children and I'm hoping it's not a Wii U exclusive either cause I'd buy this in a heartbeat for my Playstation 3.


------------

I could keep going with my thoughts on E3 this year but I think I'll just end it here. The conferences overall were somewhat disappointing from what I saw and heard (Microsoft especially, according to my mate who had to watch it) but I can't help but love the excitement surround E3 each year. As disappointing as the conferences may be, the love of gaming is what brings people to E3 in the first place. Plus if they were able to surprise everyone with an IP no one was expecting like "Watch Dogs", I'm not sure you would call this year a disaster.
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING


In preperation for "Prometheus", this week I turned to "Blade Runner", Ridley Scott's other game-changing sci-fi. I've covered "Blade Runner" on my blog in the past but the first time I saw it, I had slept through a bit of it and was also watching it after a long day of uni which probably affected my judgement of the film.

Watching it now, I can completely say that, to me, it just feels a lot more complete than "Alien" and I would go so far as to say that out of all the Ridley Scott films I've seen, "Blade Runner" is his best. It's best described as a neo-noir - a fusion of old and new - and has the tropes of noir we recognise but the memory of noir itself is implanted into a futuristic Los Angeles that looks closer to Hong Kong than any American city I've seen on film.  Again, I feel that much like "Alien", "Blade Runner" really established that grimy, sci-fi neo-noir look that a film like "Dark City" could have easily been influenced by. Having seen it a second time and giving it much more attention, I really appreciated the complexity of the film and the questions it raises. On a technical level, the cinematography is gorgeous and helps evoke an heir of mysticism and wonder to the film's landscape.

I think that a great companion piece to this film would be "Akira" the 1988 Japanese anime as I imagine these films to exist within the same world. Hell you could even add another anime, "Ghost in the Shell" into the mix (I would go so far as to say that "Ghost in the Shell" would not exist had it not been for "Blade Runner" BUT I could be entirely wrong about that). There's just a lot to love about "Blade Runner". FYI: It's Christopher Nolan's favourite film.


------------


Released in 2009, "Last Train Home" follows a Chinese mother and father who, every Chinese New Year, go back to see their families before returning back to the factories to continue working their thankless jobs in an attempt to help better the lives of their children. Ultimately, the documentary focuses on the struggles of the mother and the father and the effect it has on their family - particularly their daughter.

It's an amazing documentary and you'll most likely never question your own first world problems ever again after watching it. And although the documentary does take a look at an interesting topic in regards to migrant workers and the methods used to transport them back home (as well as other issues concerning China as a country rising to prominence as a superpower, akin to the United States of America), the main story driving the film is about the family's drama and how well told the story of this one family is.

Without giving anything away, the film tells the story so well that I found myself questioning whether or not I was duped into believing if it was entirely fiction (it felt too good to be true!). The film is beautifully shot and while there are minor goofs here and there (boom mics in shot, camera crew visible in shadows etc.) they're more than forgivable considering the circumstances that the filmmaker and crew put themselves in order to capture the chaos surrounding the migration process as well as the inner turmoil of the family.

Also, all those jokes about Asian parents being super strict and reinforcing their kids to study harder and achieve good marks pretty much are explained in the documentary. Like I said, these people work thankless jobs that have very little pay off but they do it because they want their kids to do better than them which is why it's so disheartening to see some of the things that happen in the film causing strife within the family (avoiding spoilers!). Do seek this underseen gem of a documentary.  


------------



"Prometheus", the semi-prequel to Ridley Scott's "Alien", follows a crew of scientists who venture off into space in hopes of finding the questions about mankind's origins. Some rather large, almost biblical stuff going on already just from that right? For me the film started off really promisingly but eventually fell into bewildering confusion and disappointment. My own personal hype and excitement for the film may have led me to feel some sense of disappointment in the overall product though so there is a bit of subjectivity going in with this review (although let's be honest, all reviews are subjective in one way or another).

I loved some of the acting talent provided by the actors involved but I didn't like some of the characters at all. Well, that is to say I couldn't really care for them (with the exception of Michael Fassbender's, David, and Charlize Theron's, Meredith Vickers). I just think that a lot of the characters were underwritten so that we could marvel at the bigger things going on like the musings about our beginnings and the meaning of life and so on and so forth. Grandiose as these thematic elements may be, I think it was just aiming a bit too high. What made "Alien" a classic was the fact that it was so low-key and unexpected (among other things). This on the other hand goes all out and does very little to explain why things occur and why things happen the way they do. And if there are intentions for sequels to this film (which I believe there are) that explain these questions, in a lot of ways, this makes us question why there needs to even be this film in the first place. And the music. Oh man, how could anyone think that the score for this film was appropriate?! The score would have been great in an entirely different movie but for this? Not at all! It's like putting a laugh track into something like "Grave of the Fireflies" - it doesn't work at all!

Okay so the script and score weren't all that great. Anything good? Sure there is. HR Giger's influence on the film is once again all over it and it's just as much his film as it is Ridley Scott's. The art direction and cinematography are top notch. I really did want to like this film, despite all the negative criticism, I heard about it and I honestly did like the first two acts of the film (even if it was essentially "Alien" all over again).

I feel that there's a lot of squandered potential here for something that could have been absolutely astonishing and for me this wasn't it. Maybe ten to twenty year from now we'll have changed our minds about the film - it worked wonders for "Blade Runner". To sum it up, "Prometheus" is a mediocre sci-fi film that leaves far too many unanswered questions and doesn't quite live up to the hype that was promised. At least it wasn't "The Hunger Games".

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

TIDBITS OF FILM NEWS


Nothing but film trailers to show off this week. The first comes from Quentin Tarantino's new one, "Django Unchained" which looks so damn cool and is done in true Tarantino fashion. I am really looking forward to Leonardo Dicaprio's performance in this film moreso than Christoph Waltz and Jamie Foxx. I can't get enough of that snap zoom on Leo's face when he laughs. Can't wait for this one.


------------


"Wreck-It Ralph" is an animated Disney film (not to be confused with Pixar who already have "Brave" coming out later this year) that follows a Donkey Kong-esque bad guy, Wreck-It Ralph as he leaves his video game to go find work elsewhere. As a gamer, this film looks like it'll be a lot of fun and I liked seeing some cameos by other famous video game bad guys in that counselling session.


------------


And the last trailer for today comes from, "The Wolf Children, Ame and Yuki" directed by "Summer Wars" helmer, Mamoru Hosoda. I love the art direction in Hosoda's films and I really hope this film gets screened at the Japanese International Film Festival later in the year.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

What a loaded week... Okay we're at the end. You've either skipped everything or read everything. Now for the usual. This post title is brought to you by Blonde Redhead and is off their album, "Misery is a Butterfly". Enjoy. 


End post.

NTS: Need to find time this week to start changing up the look of my blog. Which basically means changing the banner really... But still, I've had this layout for a while now.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Carbon Rose

Hi.

A day late with my post but that's okay, I suppose. Semester's finally over which means I'll have two months to catch up on films and games while also simultaneously keeping myself busy with a whole bunch of things that I'll maybe get to in next week's post.

------------


I've already started playing "Chrono Trigger" and am really enjoying it so far. I really do feel like it's ahead of its time, at least judging from what I've played so far. It utilises a unique but very robust combat system, has a great score and the whole time-travel concept is done really well. Clearly a lot of love and thought went into the creation of this game and I can't wait to see where it will take me.

------------

Also I'm telling myself not to indulge in buying video games for a while. I have this plan that I want to start and finish a bunch of classic JRPGs. Currently, I'm planning on starting and finishing the aforementioned, "Chrono Trigger", "Chrono Cross", "Breath of Fire 3", "Breath of Fire 4" and "Final Fantasy IX". So basically a bunch of PSX games that I never got around to since I was too busy lapping it up with my Nintendo 64. Boom.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING


In anticipation for Ridley Scott's, "Prometheus", I revisited his film "Alien" to get myself a little more psyched up for the film. I'm also gonna re-watch "Blade Runner" this week as well. I won't give a review or even a dot-point review of the film though but I did find that watching it now, there's a lot of nuances that I hadn't picked up the first time I saw the film (which was probably when I was 14 or 15). Everything from HR Giger's influence on the film (it's as much his film as it is Ridley Scott's) to the highly sexualised design of the creatures really helped create this strange, eerie universe of "Alien". It's a film that redefined the science fiction genre film and you can really see how much of an influence "Alien" has had on future films (see, "Event Horizon" and "Sunshine").

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

TIDBITS OF FILM NEWS


Not much by way of film news this week so I'll just leave you here with the trailer for "Les Miserables", directed by Tom Hooper (he directed "The King's Speech") and starring a crazy cast of ridiculously talented people. The film is an adaptation of the famous musical which in itself is an adaptation of the famous French novel of the same name. I'm not huge on musicals but this looks fantastic and is gorgeously photographed. Check out the trailer below.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

And that's all this week. This week's title comes from frequent Nujabes collaborator, Uyama Hiroto and is off his album "A Son of the Sun". A real jazzy, atmospheric laid back track. So in other words - awesome. Sit back, relax and enjoy. Preferably with some scotch or something classy like that. Yeah.


End post.