chrryblssmninja: (tropospheres_szsclay)
crossposting from tumblr...

chrry’s media year in review

music will come later

this was a busy year so I didn’t do as much as I wanted

films watched in 2016

books read in 2016

(interesting that the first and last books are Irish)

Top books read:

To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf

The Talented Mr. Ripley, by Patricia Highsmith

You Will Know Me, by Megan Abbott

Faithful Place/Broken Harbor, by Tana French

Still Life Las Vegas, James Sie

The Flight of Icarus, by Raymond Queneau

A Girl is a Half-formed Thing, by Eimear McBride

The Mark and the Void, by Paul Murray

Man Tiger, Eka Kurniawan

2/5ths of this list is Irish…

short stories:

Eleven Prague Corpses (Kirill Kobrin) and Let Me Tell You (Shirley Jackson)


Amorgos, by Nikos Gatsos, trans. Sally Purcell

dunno if I’ve got strong movie recs besides the Everest documentary Sherpa

performers seen on a screen the most this year:

(includes individual movies, tv series, and music videos)

six times: Meiko Kaji

five times: Aneurin Barnard and much of the Stray Cat Rock crew

three times: Pina Menichelli, Wunmi Mosaku, Riz Ahmed

favorite TV episodes this year:

Brooklyn 99 – 3.18- – “Cheddar” followed by Terry Kitties and Paranoia arc

Elementary - 4.17  -“You’ve Got Me, Who’s Got You?” Paul Cornell + superheroes. also, “Miss Taken”

Orphan Black – 4.2 – “Transgressive Border Crossing”

Penny Dreadful – 3.2 – “Predators Far and Near” Twist! Too bad it went all bad

Mr. Robot – 2.7 – “Handshake”

The Night Of – 1.8 – “The Call of the Wild

Maybe Narcos 2.4-5

Halt and Catch Fire –3.5 – Yerba Buena 3.6 – “And She Was” 3.7 “Threshold”

Brooklyn 99 – 4.3 – “Coral Palms, Part 3”

Westworld – 1.4 – “Dissonance Theory” thanks Ed Brubaker

Black Mirror – 3.1, 3.4

General monster design in Channel Zero

favorite tv discovery:

New Scandinavian Cooking

and now,

tv episodes watched from October thru December 2016 )
chrryblssmninja: (littlemissnovel_cloudmirror)
I'll mention what appeals to my odd tastes, but the links are there so you can check what appeals to you!

Emphasis on world premieres.
io9's 75 sci-fi/fantasy films in 2016
Fandor's most anticipated compilation.
Ioncinema for 2016 and 2017.and more
Den of Geek's 27 most anticipated UK films list
A poll I created for upcoming 2016 cinema. Hundreds of titles.
Movies that premiered at Sundance 2016
Women in mainstream cinema.
10 upcoming releases by and/or about POC (ONTD)
East Asian films to watch in 2016
10 Australian films to watch in 2016
IMDB USA release calendar
Rotterdam film festival

Captain America: Civil War
Creepy and The Woman in the Silver Plate - Kiyoshi Kurosawa, the latter a French production with Tahar Rahim, Olivier Gourmet, Mathieu Amalric, Malik Zidi and Constance Rousseau.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople - Taika Waititi
Keanu - Key and Peele make a movie about a cat.
A Monster Calls - The book is one of my favorites, and J.A. Bayona could capture its power.
Raman Raghav 2.0 - Anurag Kashyap just finished shooting this film with Nawazuddin Siddiqui as the titular serial killer.
Rangoon - Vishal Bhardwaj
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
A Storm in the Stars - Haifaa al-Mansour (Wadjda) takes on the story of Mary Shelley.
Three/Three on the Road -
Johnnie To crime film.

10 Cloverfield Lane

Free Fire - Ben Wheatley directs a 1978 Boston mob deal gone wrong. With Cillian Murphy, Michael Smiley, Brie Larson, Armie Hammer and Sharlto Copley.
Kimi no na wa (Your Name) - New anime from well-reputed director Makoto Shinkai. [trailer]
Pyromanen (Pyromaniac) -Erik Skjoldbjærg directs a cast that includes Trond Nilssen returning to feature film.
Under the Shadow - Babak Anvari. Iranian horror picked up by Netflix.
War on Everyone - John Michael McDonagh comedy about two corrupt cops (Alexander Skarsgård and Michael Peña) in New Mexico. With Tessa Thompson, Theo James, Stephanie Sigman, and Caleb Landry Jones.
Zama - Lucrecia Martel adapting Antonio di Benedetto. The book is good, although it's not my favorite by the author.

Arrowhead - "A low budget Star Wars-inspired sci-fi movie featuring Shaun Micallef as the voice of a droid that looks like a desktop computer from the early 90s? Well, OK." [trailer]
certain comic book and other franchise movies that don't need further promotion
Sherpa - Jennifer Peedom. A documentary that changed subject when tragedy struck.
XX - horror anthology with only female directors and leads. [IMDB]

Ali and Nino - Documentarian Asif Kapadia tries drama with this legendary Azerbaijani love story. Stars María Valverde and Adam Bakri. First reviews weren't glowing, though.
The Bad Batch- Director Ana Lily Amirpour turns to remote Texas and a community of cannibals. With Jim Carrey, Jason Momoa, Keanu Reeves, Diego Luna, and Giovanni Ribisi. No word if Masuka the cat will make a cameo.
The Bride of Rip Van Winkle - Shunji Iwai
A Cure for Wellness - Gore Verbinski horror with Dane DeHaan.
Eight & a Half -Hong Kong anthology directed by Ann Hui, Sammo Hung, Ringo Lam, Patrick Tam, Johnnie To, Tsui Hark, John Woo, and Yuen Woo-Ping.
Éternité - Tran Anh Hung (The Vertical Ray of the Sun, The Scent of Green Papaya, Cyclo) directing Mélanie Laurent, Beatrice Bejo and Audrey Tautou in period drama.
The Handmaid - Park Chan-wook
In a Valley of Violence -
Ti West directs a Western. With Ethan Hawke, Karen Gillan, John Travolta, Taissa Farmiga, Burn Gorman, James Ransone, and Toby Huss (who is so good on Halt and Catch Fire).
High Life - Claire Denis directs a galaxy-explorer story written for the screen by Zadie Smith and Nick Laird.
Laissez Bronzer Les Cadavres -
Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani do film noir. "The only other certainty is their continued collaboration with one of the most talented cinematographers working today, Manu Dacosse.
Love and Friendship -
Whit Stillman's approach could be suitable for adapting Jane Austen.
Madly - anthology by Gael García Bernal, Anurag Kashyap, Natasha Khan, Sebastián Silva, Sion Sono, and Mia Wasikowska.
Midnight Special - Jeff Nichols. Michael Shannon plays a father protecting his superpowered young son. With Joel Edgerton, Kirsten Dunst, Adam Driver and Sam Shepard.
Mindörökké (For Ever) - György Pálfi makes unique films.
Neon Demon - Nicolas Winding Refn does horror. Stars Elle Fanning, Keanu Reeves, Christina Hendricks.
The Queen of Katwe - Mira Nair directs Lupita Nyong'o as the Ugandan chess player Phiona Mutesi. With David Oyelowo.
A Quiet Passion - Terence Davies directs Cynthia Nixon and Jennifer Ehle in a biopic about Emily Dickinson.
The Salesman - Asghar Farhadi directs a movie about actors performingThe Death of a Salesman.
The Sense of an Ending, Ritesh Batra (The Lunchbox) directs a prestige UK production.
Story of Your Life - Denis Villeneuve adapts Ted Chiang's alien contact story
A United Kingdom -. Amma Assante. "David Oyelowo plays Prince Seretse Khama of Botswana, who causes an international stir on marrying a white woman from London (Rosamund Pike)."
The Unknown Girl - Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. "Adèle Haenel plays Jenny, “a doctor who becomes obsessed with the identity of an unknown woman who died after being refused surgery.”

Birkebeinerne (The Last King) - Norway in 1206 is in civil war. With Kristofer Hivju, Jakob Oftebro, and Benjamin Helstad.
Don't Think Twice - An improv group of friends face conflict when one member lands a TV show while the rest have to deal with the lease. With Gillian Jacobs and Keegan Michael-Key.
Ghoomketu - Nawazuddin Siddiqui as a writer who goes to Mumbai to "prove his worth" in 30 days. This comedy has has supporting roles/cameos? by Amitabh Bachan and Huma Qureshi. Anurag Kashyap plays an Inspector.
Loving - Another Jeff Nichols film has Ruth Negga and Joel Edgerton as the couple in a landmark mixed-race marriage case.
Our Kind of Traitor - Ewan McGregor, Naomie Harris, Damien Lewis, Stellan Skarsgård, Grigory Dobrygin, and Pawel Szajda in a John le Carré adaptation.
Over the Fence - Nobuhiro Yamashita directs Joe Odagirl and Yû Aoi.

IMDB: 2016 in upcoming TV series
When does [insert show name here] come back in the United States?
io9's guide to sci-fi/fantasy TV
Kotaku's guide to Winter 2016 anime

Falling Water (USA): Three people (David Aja, Will Yun Lee, and Lizzie Brocheré) caught in a collective dream that might help them save the world. Juan Carlos Fresnadillo directed the pilot, which I hope will have the same creepy vibe as his early feature Intacto. Among the other credits is Ramón Fernández as "Mysterious Latin Man."
Frontier (Netflix): the North Atlantic fur trade in the late 18th century. Stars Jason Momoa.
Luke Cage (Netflix) and other Marvel shows
Midnight Sun - Leïla Bekhti plays a French detective sent to Arctic Sweden to investigate what will be the first of several murders.
SS-GB (BBC One): Sam Riley plays a detective drawn into a complicated case in Nazi-occupied London. Also stars Kate Bosmorth, Jason Flemyng, and Aneurin Barnard.
Underground (WGN America): Runaway slaves on the Underground Railroad. Stars Aldis Hodge. Premieres March 9.
Westworld (HBO) I like the cast, but I'm worried we'll be forced to sit through a lot of gratuitous...everything. Ed Brubaker's on the writing staff, though.

I'll see if the Powerpuff Girls' reboot is ok...I think I'm one of the few who was ok with the newer special. There will also be Vampire Hunter D: Resurrection. The Living and the Dead (with Colin Morgan) looks like a slower approach supernatural show. New horror includes Slasher (with Katie McGrath) and a modern-day Tales from the Darkside (is it a TV movie or failed pilot?) along with a Tales from the Crypt reboot that's more like one tale per season [more].. Secret City has Anna Torv, Jacki Weaver, and intrigue, although Aussies tell me that few Australian dramas turn out well. TNT is trying to adapt Animal Kingdom to Southern California, while Sony is adapting Roadside Picnic as a TV show, La Reina del Sur will be Queen of the South, and The Phantom of the Opera is becoming the TV show Coney Island. Richard Armitage is a spy again in Berlin Station. Archie Panjabi will lead the ABC anthology The Jury but I'm not sure if that will air in fall.
This is the best series synopsis I've found:
Blood Drive: The cars run on blood. Do you need a plot?

(not including shows in midseason or on my to-try list. I just started Manhattan and I'm already sad that it wasn't renewed for a third season.)
Agent Carter - season 2 recently started, seems alright so far
Black Mirror - returning on Netflix, with Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Mackenzie Davis in the first episode
Fortitude - filming season 2 right now
Halt and Catch Fire
Orphan Black - April
I forgot what other shows I watch...

io9's sci-fi/fantasy book preview and comics preview
promising: The Winged Histories, I Am Providence, The Last Days of New Paris, Certain Dark Things, The Winds of Winter (???)
The Millons' Great 2016 Book preview
I have This Census-Taker in my library stack but I've heard negative reviews. Maybe The Queen of the Night will live up to hype.The Book of Memory sounds promising. I'd want to read Álvaro Enrigue's Sudden Death untranslated. I like Oyeyemi's works although the ending of Boy, Snow, Bird was a big misstep. Shelter, by Jung Yun, Margaret the First, by Danielle Dutton, and Homegoing, by Yaa Gyasi, could be good. Aravind Adiga's The Selections will be out in June.
Bomb Magazine spring books preview
A Floating Chinaman, by Hua Hsu, sounds interesting.
25 new books by African writers
I'll look out for The Maestro, the Magistrate and the Mathematician and Tales of the Metric System. Wow, that combination sounds nerdy.
ETA: Upcoming books by Black authors

2016 in music
Stereogum’s 101 most anticipated albums

The Last Shadow Puppets
M.I.A. – Matahdatah
maybe RJD2
Islands will have two albums?
Lemaitre's latest single is danceable.
chrryblssmninja: (mimicar)
I was going to continue with my practice of setting 101 goals for the new year, but then I can't remember if I clicked "revert to previous draft" when I opened this page or not, so, my goal for the year is...accomplish something.

I did write about my media highlights and favorite music of 2015.

Goals actually accomplished in 2015:

  • I was able to show [ profile] whomp around San Francisco, and I also reconnected with many relatives on both sides of my family! I'm a really social person, and it was great to see and talk with them.

  • With the family, I returned to Las Vegas and Puerto Rico. New places we visited included Yosemite and Mammoth, other towns in Gold Country, Also did more local tourism, including the Renaissance Fair at Casa de Fruta. All the hyperlinks in this paragraph link to pictures!

  • I did get to speak Spanish more, especially in Puerto Rico, and I used Japanese a little at work (although, when one customer asked me a question in Japanese, I answered in Spanish. I corrected myself and she was fine with it, but yeah). I even had a simple conversation in Norwegian! Although I can't say more because we can't post about specific customers on the internet. Even a few phrases of Tagalog helped once. I am now on over 80 days of practicing Gaeilge and Norsk on Duolingo.

  • Finally visited New People when we went to a festival in Japantown. My mom bought me this Omocat sweater...partly because I forgot to wear warm enough clothing for that windy day...

  • I did start lifting 20-pound free weights, and while I didn't get to 25-pound, I did move from 10 reps to 15 reps over the course of the year.

  • I bought some nice and often useful clothes (many via work discount), as well as 2 CDs, nice yearly agendas (classic art for 2015, and a slim Star Wars one with Rey and BB-8 on the cover for 2016 through 2017), and the Universal classic Horror DVD set. Also received a new photo camera and mini-tripod prior to our Las Vegas trip.

  • I did read at least one book from every continent except Antarctica, but I think that's less of a feat because diverse selection is pretty much my general taste when I go to the libraries here. Also read five non-fiction books, as well as five books published in 2015. Now I want to read more from before 1900.

I think I'll just dump my list of TV watched from October through December here. So much I still have to catch up on...
the episodes )
chrryblssmninja: (tragicradiance_jessicahyde)
An FFA friend posted a link to this today: In Celebration of Old-School Livejournal

I had stayed off of f-list and tumblr dash the past two weeks to make time to watch movies for a "Best of 2010-2014" poll for YAM-Magazine. The vote actually ends in fifteen more days, but I want my life back! So I'm slowly returning back to social media and all the TV and other things I had put off during that period.

I also had a really nasty sore throat; last week during an overnight shift I had to keep running back to the water fountain whenever I got violent, suffocating coughs that required lots of water to help me recover. (I made sure to cough into my elbow instead of the clothes I was fixing at the store, though.) Today, I'm still coughing a little, but recovery's going well.

Ranking some of the movies I've seen recently for the poll, from excellent down to pretty good:

  • The Boy and the World (O menino e o mundo), 2013: a dialogueless Brazilian animated movie that I first couldn't get into when I was tired, but when I woke up and sped up the movie a little (I thought the poll deadline was that midnight) it was perfect. Doesn't matter that the message is blunt- it's relevant to Brazil and done really well.

  • The Missing Picture (L’image manquante), 2013: The director, Rithy Panh, made clay figures to illustrate his life in Cambodia before and during the reign of the Khmer Rouge. Some commenters said it was slow but I thought the pacing had good speed. This is the only movie I actually paid to watch, since I streamed it with Amazon gift credit, and I was so captivated I had finish the film at wayyy too early in the morning.

  • The Tale of Princess Kaguya (Kaguya-hime no monogatari), 2013: It's great, but I have minor quibbles about things that stand out after reading the Yasunari Kawabata prose version of the tale.

  • Whiplash, 2014: Definitely my tempo.

  • Grey Matter (Matière Grise), 2011. It starts out a little meta, following a young director in Rwanda trying to put together a movie. Then you see the movie he had in mind. Some early parts seem really iffy but pay off at the end. Only wish for a little more to the final full circle scene, but otherwise a great debut that has me anticipating more from Kivu Ruhorahoza.

  • The Selfish Giant, 2013. Really plunges you into the lives (and accents) of two kids who try and make a little money from selling scrap metal.There are a couple of moments that made me gasp, and the last third of the film is so intense.

  • The Prize (El premio), 2011. Very good with performances and atmosphere. Though made in Mexico, it's based on the director's childhood under Argentina's dictatorship.Good interview in Spanish here.

  • Nostalgia for the Light (Nostalgia de la luz), 2010. Chilean documentary that makes a brilliant connection between astronomy, archaelogy, and the experience and aftermath of life under dictatorship.

  • The Dark Horse, 2014. An outstanding entry from New Zealand in the usually middling "troubled coach helps troubled kids through training in a competitive activity" genre.

  • Why Don’t You Play in Hell? (Jigoku de naze warui), 2013. A Sion Sono hyperexplosion of blood and color about yakuza wars and filmmaking.

I saw other good movies, but these are the ones I felt most compelled to write about at this time. Okay, special mention to the macabre Canadian comedy Eddie: The Sleepwallking Cannibal (Thure Lindhardt should really get to do more comedy!) and trippy Russian movie Generation P. The animation style in Le tableau is so gorgeous and the meta concept so innovative that I wish the script was better for the first third of the movie. Oslo 31 August really messed me up, and I was able to recognize quite a few of the performers in the end montage of Bombay Talkies.
Made some other discoveries, like: Tom Hardy does a really good Welsh accent and I can easily identify Andrew Scott's voice (Locke), and Matthias Schoenaerts in Bullhead/Runskop really looks like Tom Hardy. Looking forward to future significant roles for Amrita Acharia (Jeg er din), Saleh and Adam Bakri (Salvo, Lamma shoftak, Omar), Aniello Arena (Reality), Karidja Touré (Bande de filles), and so many of the actors in Starred Up. Also glad to see quality features from female directors such as Paula Markovitch (El premio), Clio Barnard (The Selfish Giant moreso than The Arbor), July Jung (Dohee-ya), Annemarie Jacir (Lamma shoftak), Tanya Hamilton (Night Catches Us), Alice Rohrwacher (Le meraviglie and Corpo Celeste), Iram Haq (Jeg er din). Amma Asante (Belle), and more.

Finally, the reason for which I actually intended to make this post:TV episodes watched between January 1 and today. )
chrryblssmninja: (fromthewind_iceisland)
Finally changed up some of my icons. I am, at default, an island of frost.

Been busy with retail work (survived Black Friday!) and family. The latter dragged me to the Exodus movie yesterday but at least I was vindicated when everyone realized how bad it was. The most entertaining part was 11-year-old Isaac Andrews' performance as Lil' Punk Almighty.

Frustrated that I might never get into making movies ever with the way life is going, (lol I know I'm only 26 but you don't know my life dude. Maybe I could direct or at least write a better Biblical short than 99% of what is made.) Maybe I'll try and edit some footage I still have, idk.

Catching up on Adventure Time and Elementary and other current watching includes Brooklyn 99 and Key and Peele. aw man Jakob's leaving Kollektivet but I wish him the best. Need to find some time to watch Over the Garden Wall and Blue Blazes (the Japanese live action show about anime creators in college) and other shows and movies from 2014 I can manage to find before the year ends. Anticipating the Black Mirror Christmas Special but I won't get my hopes too high for it just in case. Also cautious about the upcoming Star Wars film, although I like many in the cast.

Music I've been into recently:

Ladytron - "Melting Ice"

Shiina Ringo - "Shuen no Onna (Leading Lady)." I want to make a tribute to '60's Japanese crime movies that is set to this song. I also like how the title and sound contrasts with "Arikitari na Onna (Ordinary Woman)" (great live performance there) from the other album she released this year.

Utopia 2 OST - "To You All Kids Will Come"
Separating this from the events it accompanies in the show, this piece puts me into a state of euphoria. Ecstasy. Maybe just euthymia If I'm not able to play it at its best settings on any media player or in my head.

Music Go Music - "Shine Down Forever"

Small Faces - "Runaway"
I was looking up covers of Del Shannon's "Runaway" when I found this. Thus, I found out about Small Faces a few days after their keyboardist died. RIP. At least I found out about them?

need to play music to fight the Christmas music mix on loop at the store where I work. Also, my supervisors are pretty good but so many of them are younger than me and this is one of the things (along with current events and family arguments!) that gets me crisis-ing in my mind now and then.
chrryblssmninja: (recycle_flower)

  1. Strigoi

  2. The House by the Cemetery (Quella villa accanto al cimitero)

  3. Saint Ange (House of Voices)

  4. The Innkeepers

  5. Shutter

  6. The Cars That Ate Paris

  7. The Masque of the Red Death

  8. Castle of Blood (Danza macabra)

  9. Count Dracula/El Conde Dracula (Nachts, wenn Dracula erwacht)

  10. Cuadecuc, vampir

  11. The Blood Drinkers (Kulay dugo ang gabi)

  12. Four Flies on Grey Velvet (4 mosche de velluto grigio)

  13. Isolation

  14. The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue (Non si deve profanare il sonno dei morti)

  15. Naboer (Next Door)

  16. The Brood

  17. An American Werewolf in London

  18. Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell (Kyuketsuki gokemidoro)

  19. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

  20. The Living Skeleton (Kyûketsu dokuro-sen)

also the short film Émotion: Densetsu no gogo = Itsukamita Dracula.

I also watched Blind Woman’s Curse (The Tattooed Swordswoman, Kaidan nobori ryû) but, while it has horror themes like a curse, it’s much more a straightforward action movie.

The 1949 version of Yotsuya kaidan (pts. I and II) is more psychological/bleak realist than horror-inclined version of the ghost story. It’s also really boring most of the time, although there are some effective shots and Kinuyo Tanaka is of course good in the double role.

Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer and The Masque of the Red Death were, for me, the best movies overall, despite quibbles (score for the former. a last-act character choice in the latter). Yet most of these movies really provided vivid experiences. Isolation, for instance, is probably the best-acted movie ever made about killer mutant cow fetuses. The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue and Goke also have strong apocalyptic vibes. The Blood Drinkers' literal title is Blood is the Color of Night, and the film itself does unique things with changing color tints.

Saint Ange was wildly inconsistent and The Innkeepers was eh but the most disappointing movie was An American Werewolf in London, because it’s really irresponsible and out of character for the nurse to take the pathetic (not even in a puppy-dog way) patient home so soon. It’s less believable than being haunted by the victims of werewolves! Of course the first draft was written by the 19-year-old who would grow up to direct Animal House. I was fine with the horror-comedy and certain set pieces, though, but unlike the corny aspects of the other films that still fit within their respective worlds, I couldn’t go along with this puerile male adolescent fantasy.

The Living Skeleton is a fitting nautical transition to my Noirvember viewing.

(x-posted from tumblr. maybe a life update soon)
chrryblssmninja: (BMOnoire)
in the past six days I:

- broke my glasses
- had to get an eye exam and new glasses, then rush in late to my brother's graduation
- then we watched the GoT finale, packed our bags, and drove to Reno
- I watched World Cup (sometimes on all the ESPN-showing TVs while walking through one casino to another) games
- did other things while my family gambled (not into gambling for money, especially when the cent-games aren't interesting to me): walked around the casino floor, read restaurant menus, started AND finished a book I brought in my purse, whined a bit, played in arcades if the hotel had any (got these prizes too), and took pictures like this:

Then we drove back down around Lake Tahoe:

The first seven posts in this tag have more pictures I took.

Earlier this month, I finally updated my film blog with a comparison of Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men: Days of Future Past.

I've been watching World Cup but I haven't been reblogging pictures on Tumblr because I didn't feel comfortable with posting pictures after all the mess involved in "preparing" the area for the games. Yeah it does nothing to help but it's what I'm doing.

Don't know how long we'll be staying in the Davis-Sacramento area, so we took advantage of the relatively short distance (about 2.5 hour drive) to Lake Tahoe and Reno as a graduation present for my bro. Also, midweek hotel prices were pretty good if you could find an open room. Also we haven't been out of state in forever.

I'm going to the apartment gym much more. Use it while I still can. It's funny when I'm exercising while watching a game, though, because sometimes I get stuck watching a particular play and I have to catch myself before doing more repetitions/losing count/holding for longer than planned. If we got cherries on sale, I bring them to the gym with my water bottle because I heard that cherries, pomegranates, and similar fruits help muscle recovery after workouts. Also incorporated 30 Days of High Intensity Interval Training into my regimen. It's helpful because you can adjust it to any level of skill or endurance or general amount of time.

I need to take more action job/life-wise but I just feel stuck and in a dull panic where I can't even think of a recent success or failure to write as a response to a job application query. Now that my brother's out of school, we're trying to figure things out, but my body's like set on chill fatigue while my mind races. I just turned 26 but feel stuck sometimes at 16, in good ways and bad, or as weary and cynical as someone who's endured lifetimes' more hardship. Even the writing I do for no pay takes me a long while to complete. I'm almost afraid to talk with or meet any of my classmates who only know me from school days. I shouldn't compare myself to any accomplishments they post on Facebook or LinkedIn but it happens.
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
My first actual piece of writing is up at Film Antidote! It's about the 1969 Argentine speculative fiction film Invasion, directed by Hugo Santiago and co-written by Jorge Luis Borges and Adolfo Bioy Casares.

One of the things I gave up during Lent was picking at non-hair-root dirt on my face. That, along with occasionally washing with lemon juice at night/when I'm not going outside (it has some bad effect when you get in the sun soon after), has gradually helped my acne and acne scars clear up. Now I'm out of lemon juice, but my mom got a Biore charcoal wash treatment on sale for me to try after a co-worker recommended it.

I had some interviews for jobs. I felt I responded better, but I still didn't get hired.
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
Roundup for the first three months of 2014:
I wrote reviews of Boardwalk Empire season 4, Dhalgren, Navidad & Matanza, and True Detective season 1.

The top two movies I watched happened to be from India: The Lunchbox (Dabba) (2013) and Pyaasa (1957).

As for books, my favorites were Bernardo Axtaga's Obabakoak and NoViolet Bulawayo's We Need New Names. Eleanor Catton's The Luminaries was pretty exciting to read for the first 700 pages, like a more clear-eyed version of Victorian multi-character melodrama, but after that the fated-luck-astrology themes were a bit much, even if the book was structured around them. The story's  good overall, though, so if the TV miniseries version actually gets made, I might give it a try. The opening six-story run in John Ajvide Lundqvist's Let the Old Dreams Die is great; after that the quality goes up and down until the solid novella sort-of-sequel to Let the Right One In. I also started reading the brilliant Moomin comic strips, and appreciated Joseph McElroy's experimental A Smuggler's Bible as a whole..

TV episodes watched from January through March 2014 )
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
We got to drive to the Bay Area on Monday! Did some shopping, and I was finally able to buy Fantasia's mango pearl tea after three years of hoping to taste it again.
It was cool to drive with view of San Francisco while a version of the "Experiment in Terror" theme played on my phone, because that movie opens with the Bay Bridge! /no1curr

Random things I started watching during these Olympics that I never really paid attention to before: ski jumping, the Slovenian ski team in general, women's hockey, sliding events, extreme skiing events.

I also participated in this Film Antidote discussion on the idea of "the film canon."

At first I wasn't sure about True Detective, but with its inclusion of The Yellow King mythos and issues of subjectivity, along with great acting and production, I'm glad I went back to it.
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
My mom brought me to my first pedicure on Thursday! All I'd say is that my toenails definitely needed it. I didn't get any polish on the nails because that's not my style, but the lady who attended to me was nice. I had to control myself from feeling sensitive/ticklish when she did the foot massage because I didn't want to accidentally kick her.

Also got an order from my Best Buy gift card.

Right now, all I'm doing is catching up on things I didn't catch last year and setting up everything for the months ahead.
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
Horror/horror-themed movies watched in October:
1) Et mourir de plaisir (Blood and Roses), 1960
2) The City of the Dead (Horror Hotel), 1960
3) White: The Melody of the Curse (Hwaiteu:Jejooui Mellodi), 2011
4) La residencia (The House that Screamed), 1969
5) Videodrome, 1983
6) The Curse of Frankenstein, 1957
7) Absentia, 2011
8) Day of the Dead, 1985
9) Dans ma peau (In My Skin), 2002
10) Rapsodia satanica, 1915
11) The Beyond (…E tu vivrai nel terrore! L’aldilà), 1981
12) Dead of Night, 1945
13) Ghost of Yotsuya (Tōkaidō Yotsuya Kaidan), 1959
14) Antiviral, 2012
15) Fritt vilt II (Cold Prey 2), 2008
16) Halloween II, 1981
17) The Queen of Spades, 1949
18) Trouble Every Day, 2001
19) Hour of the Wolf (Vargtimmen), 1968
20) Tesis, 1996

La residencia was the best of these movies. (There should still be a link to the uncut version can be found on this list of movies I've watched on Youtube.) This piece from the soundtrack of Et mourir de plaisir stood out to me. Fritt vilt II ends up being better than Halloween II even while ripping off the basic "hospital aftermath" premise.

I would have watched more, but YAM-Mag's working on a poll of "Best movies in 2012 - redux" so I did a lot of non-horror 2012 catchup watching the week before Halloween. My favorite of those films was the two-part, 5+ hour Hindi saga Gangs of Wasseypur. Been playing the soundtrack's "Kaala Rey" on repeat.

Another movie I watched that wasn't "horror" but was scary and harrowing true horror was the Soviet WWII drama Come and See, which starts out weird and ends up devastating. What really struck me was that my random thought during the 1st act of "would things would be happier if the movie played in reverse?" WAS LATER ANSWERED AND SHOT DOWN TO MY SURPRISE HOW DID THIS MOVIE READ MY MIND?
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
On Thursday, the lady I talk with about job searching took me to the university's International House to look for volunteer opportunities. Turned out they needed someone to cover the front desk later that afternoon, so after the person in charge checked my qualifications on their application and on LinkedIn, I filled in. I just stepped in and did a job with no prior notice! My phone answering and message-taking could have been smoother, but I just kept on asking questions and didn't mess up much. I'll volunteer there more in the future. They're nice and they also help with networking and career-building matters.

Trying to catch up on movies of 2012 for a YAM poll and I just watched Dans la maison, which is pretty good although the director later said some icky things about women. white French art-world males just living up to stereotypes on how they think about women ugh

anyway, I was led to the movie because the lead young actor (Ernst Umhauer) was so smirktastic in a trailer.

and by today I ended up translating a Japanese article here because it sounds like it was written by a big fan of the movie trying keep things professional.

I had the help of the Perapera plug-in for Firefox but still that is another achievement

also saw Antiviral and there was also Caleb Landry Jones for another strange but oddly fascinating face for a young male lead in 2012

memorable film faces are great to study- attractive or not, classic or contemporary- because they're such a part of characters and they can't be generically pretty or ugly or ___ but stand out in motion because of a quirk or flaw or how they can capture the screen's attention at a startling moment and...

then I'm reminded of the general old Hollywood rule for filming leads: "light men for character, light women for beauty" and how that more or less stands today unless an odder-looking character actress scrapes some way to top billing. I want to make a movie that lights women for character.
chrryblssmninja: (me)

Currently sort-of trying to watch a horror movie a day for October. So far I've watched seven.
aww yeah my listing of The Hypothesis of the Stolen Painting in my "movies that scared me" submission got people interested in watching the movie!

Also started meeting with the nice lady from the UC Davis campus about job prospects as well as improving my resume and job search. I'm working on her suggestions but I think I could have done more if this snifflecold didn't sideline me.
chrryblssmninja: (iconomicon_doctors)

After watching Wojciech Has' 1965 film adaptation of The Saragossa Manuscript, I read the '60's two-part English-language translation of the source novel. Then after watching Has' version of The Hour-Glass Sanatorium, I read the original collection of short stories by Bruno Schulz, as well as Street of Crocodiles (which inspired a Brothers Quay short film I also watched). Has has adapted other novels, so I'm trying to track down any English-language translations before I watch the movies. Thankfully, my Cal alumni membership allows me to borrow from the uni library here.

Don't Go Breaking My Heart (which can be viewed with English-language subtitles on Hulu) may be simple and oversweet for many, but I really enjoyed it. Also, while the characters are successful rich people, they are still affected by major economic troubles. I'm a fan of Johnnie To's crime movies, but I thought this was more consistent than the other romantic dramedy he made recently, the more meta Romancing in Thin Air (also on Hulu!). Then again, many of my opinions on Johnnie To's work aren't quite in line with those of the critics I read online.

A Cottage on Dartmoor is such a fluid silent film ohmygosh. Visually revolutionary groundbreaking all the accolades.
Underground is another fine Anthony Asquith silent film from the 1920's. Besides a sweet romance and a surprisingly modern action sequence, it (along with Cottage) shows that being a pushy "nice guy" doesn't win a woman's heart.

Krylya (Wings)- quiet yet devastating portrait of a WWII pilot who finds her life slightly unraveling twenty years later. Larisa Shepitko didn't direct much, but I'm trying to track down her work. Voskhozhdeniye (The Ascent), her most acclaimed film, is excellent but Wings is closer to me.

Charulata is a fantastic movie that brings life to the "bored housewife" trope. Even though I haven't seen much Satyajit Ray (YET), I could tell it has some modern touches that may or may not have been New Wave-inspired. A few commenters compared those moments unfavorably with Ray's previous work but I don't care I found the whole movie thrilling drama and oblivious men are painted as oblivious men.

The Servant. oh shoot.

other notes:

September 2012, me:
Elysium will probably be a better movie than Pacific Rim because it's more serious.
September 2013, me:
Pacific Rim is a better movie than Elysium because it doesn't try to be serious.

- Tales of the Heike Clan (Shin heike monogatari) totally has a different spin on the Kiyomori who causes all the trouble in Heike monogatari.
- Making space for Quai des Orfèvres on my old computer might have been the last nail in its coffin.
- so I watched the 1913, 1926, and 1935 versions of The Student of Prague and the last one got some adware stuck on this "new" computer my brother handed down to me. So now I have to click a bunch of ads closed. oh well because:
- Anton Walbrook movies watched this year: three. so far.
- related: Powell and Pressburger films watched this year: four. A Canterbury Tale was my favorite of the four, although The Red Shoes is the visual masterpiece.
- finally watched Ingmar Bergman's Persona and given its audience/artist themes I also thought about how the story relates to fandom experience
- Hideko Takamine movies watched this year: four

great modern movie faces:

Lee Young-Ae as Lee Geum-ja (Lady Vengeance)
chrryblssmninja: (me)

I also earned pay raises at my two part-time/temp jobs. If only they were full-time!

My list of five favorite classic cinematographers was posted on YAM-Mag!

and yesterday I managed to make a run on the construction-filled UC Davis campus, from the Mondavi Center to the Memorial Union, in seven minutes! Wearing Keds-type shoes! so I could feel pebbles and construction gravel through my shoes! but it didn't matter! because I was blasting Nico Vega's "Beast" on my phone in my bag! and I managed to catch the bus before the driver left one minute before he was supposed to leave!

This week, I made a ton of sales at my subscription calling job, and everyone tried to catch up, haha. Also, one of my co-workers thought I was meowing and another coworker suddenly started meowing "Eye of the Tiger" and then belted "it's the- meow of the tiger, it's the thrill..."
...yup. Singing is one of the ways we dealt with the stress of possibly not making goal this week. but some of us stayed a little later and then we beat goal.
Later, I joined a coworker in singing "Under the Sea" and had a braintwin moment with another coworker about Elmo's goldfish in "Elmo's World." We also had enough food this Saturday to put together a good lunch to eat while calling.

Too bad I wasn't able to see Arsenal win twice this week too.
chrryblssmninja: (jessicahyde)
aw man I wanted to make a supercool graphic for the layers of stories in Jan Potocki's The Saragossa Manuscript but this is how it turned out. Oh well at least it is done.

I also finally made a list of the movies featured in A History of Horror and Horror Europa here.

otherwise I don't have much motivation for anything. I enjoyed watching Pacific Rim and doing other things but any happy feelings feel much more temporary. I'm not even too excited for Comic Con announcements; it's just like "oh, that's good to know" or "hey that's interesting."

The temporary calling job's ok and the people are nice (the guys in my room often start singing at random times) but I want to get away from this town. Davis is nice if you like small towns with major college energy, and it's pedestrian-friendly for those of us without cars, but I don't want a job or anything to tie me down here. Yet with my family and finance situation I still have to wait at least a year to get out.
chrryblssmninja: (mortgraphics_flower)
TV episodes watched from January through March, with some comments )


Fringe, Being Human UK, and The Lizzie Bennet Diaries ended.
Shows I started and continued to watch: Utopia, Les revenants, In the Flesh.
I also plan on watching all the rest of Peter Gunn on Hulu in the future.

The only movie I saw from 2013 was Something Necessary, a pretty good Kenyan movie that MUBI streamed for free on the day of the Kenyan elections..
Movies I gave the highest ratings to on this year's movies-watched list:
The Saragossa Manuscript (now I want to watch more stories within stories movies), Chungking Express (finally watched it!), Fists in the Pocket (I pugni in tasca), and the entire trilogy experience of The Human Condition (Ningen no joken)
Favorite viewing surprises: Paranorman, La main du diable, A Matter of Taste (Une affaire de goût), Miss Minoes
ok not really a surprise since I'm a fan of Johnnie To's work already yet the choreography of lighting and movement in Throw Down deserves a mention
Faces added to my to-watch list:
Hideko Takamine, Rachel Mwanza, Pierce Gagnon
Funniest moments:
the dinner scene in Vulgaria
the proposed graveyard scene from Seven Psychopaths
when the titular character gets a gun in The Gingerdead Man

Favorite books read so far this year:
Historia universal de la infamia, Jorge Luis Borges
A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness
Works that I can imagine as a good (or better) film or TV adaptation:
Esi Edugyan's Half-Blood Blues. Jazz musicians of African descent stuck in Berlin and occupied Paris in WWII. At least it wouldn't shift more focus towards the white characters like what I saw of Dancing on the Edge.
Alfred Bester's The Stars My Destination (Tiger! Tiger!), in a way that would get the epic sci-fi look and themes right, treat the problematic aspects as problematic, and not gloss over the character flaws and twisted relationships.
Dashiell Hammett's The Glass Key, in a modern (though not modern day-set) adaptation that would include the book's meditative aspects, without being slow for the sake of self-importance.
John Ajvide Lindqvist's Little Star. Probably best as a miniseries.
Favorite short stories read:
"Four Rajeshes" and "Bibhutibhushan Mallik's Final Storyboard", by Rajesh Parameswaran
"Nights Can Turn Cool in Viborra", by Charles Portis

The only new music I've played on repeat so far: various selections from Cristobal Tapia de Veer's soundtrack for Utopia.
chrryblssmninja: (BMOnoire)
now that the five free days of streaming Hulu’s Criterion collection are over

back to life as usual

I did finish 15 movies, if you count The Human Condition (Ningen no jōken) as one film and not a trilogy, and started a few that I either didn’t feel like continuing (I can at least cross them off my to-watch list) or felt would better suit another time or viewing mood/screen. I know they occasionally put up five movies for free viewing for a week, but I hope this all-catalog promotion will return another year.

I did take breaks between movies too.

My favorite movie out of the fifteen was Fists in the Pocket (I pugni in tasca)

#that's it #that's the movie
It's on Youtube with English subs here, although I don't know the visual quality. Twisted family morbid comedy woho. It would great to put this in a double feature after Jean-Pierre Melville and Jean Cocteau's Les enfants terribles.
I also watched three Aki Kaurismäki movies. At least another fifth of my viewing time was set during WWII, including:

The Human Condition (Ningen no jōken)

I have to admit that Parts 1 and 2 are quite trying, because there's lots of talking and people declaring! their! principles! and the Japanese actors playing Chinese characters seem to have trouble with the (phonetic?) Mandarin dialogue. Once you get through parts 1 and 2, though, the visual and emotional strengths become more assertive, and going through the whole nine-and-a-half hours is quite the viewing experience.

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