26 July, 2005

life's like a movie ~ write your own ending...

Buon giourno!

It has been a very cinematic week for mindlessmunkey, with the annual advent of MIFF! That is - The Melbourne International Film Festival! In honour of my movie-filled time recently, you must all take
ANOTHER QUIZ ...this one is about some of my favourite movies! Hurrah!

On Friday afternoon, I met with Madame Mu, Lady Lili and Ms Jen at the fabulous Stella Artois bar in the Forum Theatre (get along down there y'all) for a few cold ales before heading off to see Innocence ~ a surrealistic French film about a bunch of young girls at a bizarre kind of boarding/ballet/finishing school. The imagery was great and the story intriguing - leaving itself wide open for imaginitive interpretation. Unfortunately, the film was a little too "French" ~ i.e. ponderous and pointless. Thirty minutes cut from the running-time, a consistent protagonist and a more emotionally engaging/satisfying conclusion would have made this a great film.

Saturday saw the munkey trundling off by himself to the lovely Capitol cinema to see Mysterious Skin. But lo and behold, who should be there in the queue but Mr Chris Mac and his partner Mr Hao. Yay! So I had company while waiting in the line, and of course for the film itself. This latest work by Gregg Araki is a compelling, occasionally funny, often gritty and at times extremely unsettling exploration of two young men who suffered sexual abuse in their youth. This film has caused some controversy, and it's easy to see why people may be disturbed. However this is a poignant and important film, which I hope will be granted a release, so it can be viewed, considered and discussed.

A break in cinematic proceedings on Saturday evening allowed Mr Ryan and I to visit the house of Snazzles and Moodles to visit MR JOSH!!! Yes, lovers and dreamers, after nine months in the Land Of The Rising Sun, everybody's favourite thesis-avoider is back in the merry old land of Oz. Bearded and in great shape, he's as easy on the eye as ever, and wonderful company as always. After a couple of hours catching up, Ryan and I headed back to Richmondia to pick up Rye's friend Ms Nelufa, deposited her at a party in Malvern, before backtracking to South Caulfield for the Housewarming of DrDaveGoo. Mr Kenny (who I haven't seen in far too long) and his partner Mr Chris (who I had never met before) were there... and for Dave, Kenny, munkey and our respective beloveds, it felt strangely like a gathering of old friends. And I finally got to hear DrGoo perform Tori's Cornflake Girl ~ and a wonderful rendition it was too *piano-skills-put-to-shame munkey*.

On Sunday, Mr Ryan and I headed off to see Sin City. Impressive and stylish, I would have to say it is one of the most relentlessly violent films I've ever seen. Not only in terms of the frequent acts of brutality depicted, but Rodrigue/Miller's film is so overwhelmingly frenetic and loud, its characters so universally unappealing, and the subject matter so consistently unpleasant, the film itself is a virtual act of violence upon the audience. Like an horrific news story though, it's impossible to take your eyes off it, and impossible not to be drawn into the multiple narratives unfolding within this dark and dangerous world.

It was off to the Festival again that evening (after a dinner at Ants in China town) with Snazzles, Moodles, Lili, her mum Carole and Mistress Corrie to see the latest offering from the always-wonderful Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli - probably the most successful animé production-house ever. Howl's Moving Castle - based (one presumes loosely) upon a young-adult novel - is outlandish, beautiful, hilarious, and at times almost nonsensical. However, as I find with most animé, if you let go of your assumed right to understand the inner workings of the plot, and just go with it, the experience is visiually stunning, emotionally engaging and heaps of fun.

On Monday, Mr Ryan and I took advantage of his morning off and my RDO, to organise his Passport application, so we are now a step closer to New Zealand. Olé! After Rye headed off to work, I lazed about and played the Sims for awhile (the Madame Mu Sim has returned from outer space, the Mr Rye Sim seems to have a penchant for leaping unannounced into his neighbours' hot tubs, and my own Sim has made friends with Jeanne D'Arc and Gandhi). I then met with Ms Snazzles and Mr Josh to see Screaming Masterpiece - a documentary about the music scene in Iceland. As a documentary, it was a bit of a mish-mash: quite aimless and random, with not all that much to say for itself (although I distinctly get the feeling some of this was due to VERY poor subtitling - the interviewees often seemed to talk for minutes and minutes, prompting only one or two sentences of writing on the screen. Very frustrating). However it was more than worth the price of admission to see some absolutely wonderful live footage of Icelandic favourites like Björk, as well as more obscure acts like Múm, Mugison, and slowblow... and of course my beloved Sigur Rós in spine-tingling form. I am very much looking forward to next Wednesday night!

Well, the Festival continues, so there will doubtless be further movie-related rantings from your favourite munkey in the not-too-distant future.

And remember... everytime you see a 120 minute film at the cinema, you spend an hour staring at a dark, blank wall. Cheerio.


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