Monday, October 27, 2003

It's been a long time...

So...Intolerable Cruelty then. Well, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I thought it was the mildest, most accessible, and least offbeat film the Coens have done, and as such, there was a tiny feeling of blandness there, but not too much. The performances were superb, especially Clooney (who should play Reed Richards in the upcoming Fantastic Four movie. Really.), the Welsh Bird (not bad at all, and of course looks spectacular throughout), and Billy Bob Thornton (who is almost always excellent and will most likely be the only good thing about The Alamo). Clooney really was superb, perfectly capturing the quirky aspect needed in the performance, and showing hitherto-unseen skill in cartoonesque, rubberfaced, reactions. He really was very impressive, and this performance alone makes up for ER and all those awful early films of his.
Geoffrey Rush, however, was pretty bad, and I can't tell if it was the character or him, which is the only reason he gets away with it.
The script was also excellent, as was to be expected, and the film made use of that Fargo trick of having an epic orchestral soundtrack playing over rather mundane (albeit offbeat) events. Like Fargo, but unlike Pacino's Carlito's Way, it worked very well. The living-dead senior lawyer was a wonderful creation, and again Clooney was excellent in the scenes opposite him.
But the real joy, and the reason that my friend Courtney should see this film, is that it features a cameo by the greatest living American movie star.

I'm currently reading Stephen King's Eyes Of The Dragon. I'm enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would, although I'm not entirely sure that it really works as a kids' book, which was apparently the intention, as one of King's kids pointed out that he'd never written a book they could read. I gave up on further Dark Tower volumes as I really wasn't grabbed enough by the first book. Maybe another time.

Icewind Dale entertains. It's very much a stripped down Baldur's Gate II, and drops a lot of the successful elements of that game, like the fact that the playable characters are all created by yourself, so there are no character-specific plots or dialogues to access. As such, there is a very generic feel, and it feels more like a game than Baldur's Gate II did. That said, it plays in a more streamlined and less clunky way than the other game. But it's good fun, and the fact that I got Icewind Dale, Heart Of Winter and Icewind Dale II all in one pack means that I shall be busy for a while...

In terms of artistic achievement, I've done lots more in the way of sketches and designs and roughs, but no final pieces as yet, unfortunately.

Ye gods, it's Goth Week at the BBC. Don't encourage them, they'll only multiply...
(But on the other hand, look who's presenting the Goth documentary)

The most recent issue of Marvel's Avengers was rubbish. This was the issue that Marvel hyped up with promises of superhero sex and rape, and that it was going to get a "Mature Readers" tag. It's as pathetic, naive and stupid as I expected, although they wisely toned down the more tasteless elements before publishing it. This issue was characterised by terrible art, inconsistent characterisation, a frankly laughable plot and setting, and a really foolish attempt at creating interest in a title that's being run into the ground by a writer with the writing abilities of a spastic baboon. Bugger off back to DC you tit.


As a result, the best Avengers comic last week was the JLA/Avengers crossover. Even if Superman beat Thor, and that just doesn't happen...
The most recent Amazing Spider-Man, the double-sized special #500, was absolutely superb, however. Gave me tingles it did, but I grew up on Spidey, so maybe it's just me.

Finally, a complaint that ties in with the title of this post. Enterprise is pretty naff, but endearing in its own naffness. One of the things that saves it from being completely disregarded is the disasterous dad-rock theme tune. The sheer audacity of producing such an awful theme tune has to be applauded, and the song is legendary round our way. And of course, the Enterprise people have decided that the reason that no one watchs the show is because the theme tune is embarrassing (personally, the theme tune is the main reason to watch the show), so they've changed it.
A little more joy has gone out of the world.

Sorry to end on a downer there. Hey, Brighton are doing well!

Right, that'll do. There should be enough there to keep Courtney entertained at work, biLly entertained at home, and Meg entertained when she gets home from work. Now I'm off to make some ravioli. Yum!

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