Saturday, January 14, 2006

Much to my friend and her husband's embarrassment, they found to their horror that 'Irreversible' is not particularly suitable dinner viewing. An intriguing film that I'd like to finish watching. It contains some shocking scenes and is filmed with shots and sound to disorient and disturb as you see in reverse order the events that lead up to the final/first bizarre, gruesome scene. This was replaced after much blushing with a Chinese soap opera, the acting and effects of which made 'Monkey' look like Palm d'Or winning material. With Chinese subtitles I just about managed to conclude that I wouldn't be hiring this one myself.

Further film news is that Kim Ki Duk managed two out of three great films. Unfortunately (IMHO) The Coastguard is simply clunky in almost all respects though with a story line with some potential (damning with faint praise).

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In a further feat of reverse engineering, at a local hip-hop club the Chinese students have managed to turn themselves with remarkable precision into mini-50 Cents and Xzibits. Hip-hop is by no means my music of choice but it's the closest club to the local bar where they have live music on a Friday night and has a lively atmosphere.

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Finally managed to track down a couple more books and though I'm enjoying Anna Karenina, I've been looking for something else for a while. I've been wanting to read a Nikos Kazantzakis (The Fratricides) and found a book called Enormous Changes at the Last Minute by Grace Paley which has some rave reviews on the back. If anyone has read either and can comment I'd be interested in your opinions. The Kazantzakis was his last novel and is a cross-over between his religious and the epic Greek novels so am looking forward to reading it.

I'm painfully aware that in my one-sided quest to read novels from around the world (one-sided in that I don't bother to learn the languages as I do it), most of the books that I read are in translation. Not being fluent in any other languages, I don't know how much I lose through my laziness though I am aware that I was originally put of reading Homer as the first copy I tried was in an atrocious translation. I've since found translations that almost certainly didn't give me the sense of rhythm of the language but did allow me to read the story with enjoyment. I would like, when I have a spare five minutes, to relearn Russian and reread some of the novels I've enjoyed in bastardised form.

Anyway, again I must return to my learning of Chinese characters. I find it really difficult to motivate myself to rote-learn as I find that this is not the way to gain an understanding of physics, I'm having to use bits of my brain that I haven't used for a long time.

1 comment:

Jibblow Nimchook said...

I too have had a viewing of Irreversable. I'd definitely recommend you watch it through to the end but watching it as about as pleasant as watching a car crash. I had to fast forward the scene in the underpass as it's not really that nice.

Adios biscuit