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Persona

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Everything posted by Persona

  1. I saw this full-length stop motion animation last week, and it won’t leave my mind. I will probably track down the DVD when I can and watch it again, and I have a feeling it will be one of those films I watch quite a few times. As I understand it, much like Saint Maud, which I was talking about here a few days ago, the film for whatever reason sat for years without distribution. Maybe the big whigs at the top have grown tired of fighting for these artier films. Hard to say. “Artier” is the word to say, though. And while this thing screams “foreign art house production!” it also blew my mind as one of the most unique films I have seen in a long, long time. And the fact that it took years to make The Wolf House already reminds me of productions like Eraserhead, where the length of time in the artistic community building a product is almost as important as whatever end result you get. Still, this thing is a trip. Check out this quip from the reviewer of Ebert’s page. (This is hilarious)- “Such a ruthlessly claustrophobic horror show will surely be the worst possible programming for many viewers currently in quarantine, yet there is a certain breed of genre-loving cinephile that will not only embrace this picture wholeheartedly, but view it multiple times, preferably under the influence of cannabis. You know who you are, and I have no doubt the wolf does too.” I’m not going to try to describe the look of this film. Here. Check it out when you can.
  2. Persona

    La Llorona

    That is exactly what I have been thinking of. Thanks for helping me get that straight!
  3. Persona

    La Llorona

    So weird... I saw you posting on this, I believe both here and on fb(?) maybe? And I thought to myself, huh. I don’t remember that movie being all that great. And I thought that for quite a while. Weeks or months? And then I saw the trailer for this film, and whatever I saw, it wasn’t this. I am getting old. I need to check this one out.
  4. Oh, wow. Ok. That’s a cool observation.
  5. Nice! What was the Bergman sequence you didn’t mention?
  6. It went on “epix now” last night at midnight. I stayed up for it. I believe it’s $1.99 a month for your first two months. I will most likely unsubscribe and consider this a pretty good deal.
  7. This one should be in the conversation in the future for any lists made about horror, or spiritually significant horror. It is definitely about the mystery in one’s faith. Maybe a problem (?) with the film would be that it can’t wrap up the mystery — or, if it does, it certainly tends to sway toward the struggle of that mystery rather than any celebration of it. On Facebook, I wrote: A24 is really a special company. It is getting to a point where its horror roster is so good that it deserves its own category. Like, subcategories in horror are: New French Extremity, 70s slashers & original final girls, Giallo, etc. — and now there’s A24. So after waiting two years, I just saw Saint Maud. And you can place it right at the top of the list with the best A24 films — titles like The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Hereditary, Midsommar, Climax, and the VVitch. Yes, it was worth the wait. Yes, it is a stronger, albeit shorter film. (I wish it were a tad longer.) Its religious themes remind me of Breaking the Waves, Take Shelter and Lourdes, and these are some of my all-time favorites. (And they’re not even horror.)
  8. Persona

    Claravox

    Here is Our second video, Manifest(o). A couple of things have happened. The first video got a TON of views from a “west side” forum here in Grand Rapids. We couldn’t believe it! We delayed the Kickstarter due to a lack of faith in it (for now). We fell in love with this guerilla-style filmmaking on YouTube. So we are getting better at it as we go, it has become such a fun project, and we have been organizing excitedly for future endeavors. This one has less of that retro 80s/90s vibe I was going for — I’m not even sure what vibe this is. We will get back to that pre-alterna sound for sure though. I love the words on this song, and I think Genesis’ singing here is easily the best so far Here’s a fun fact on Manifest(o) for ya. At the 3:12 mark when Genesis sings the words, “Make my own fate,” I love the idea of her looking back down the railroad tracks — like she’s looking down a path to her fate. But the truth is she is looking at a cop who is busting us off those tracks. We got out of there, laughing so hard all the way home.
  9. Yes, the dramatizations were a bit hokey, but I found this one an entrancing watch, and thought that perhaps the dramatizations might pull in some of the less-informed viewers. Like myself. I was blown away by the idea that the “singularity” as referred to in other docs in the past few years, perhaps has already happened — that it came in with a whisper and not a roar, not that the machines are conscious of their own choices but that their choices, or path, has the potential to take over. Seeing what many people accept for “truth” these days, it is apparent that a Terminator or Matrix style war isn’t needed as much as the ability to simply control large portions of the populations’ ideas about reality. And noting the events from last week you can see the results of those who are trapped in a reality of their own making. But now what? That’s the problem at the end of this film. There are zero ideas about how to put the Genie back in the bottle. Scary thought — there’s no way out of this. This one and the Gibney film were two great political docs this year.
  10. Persona

    Claravox

    Wow. I hadn’t even thought about posting here, as most of you have probably already seen my FB, but might as well post for anyone who wants to see. Last year I started playing around town (Grand Rapids, MI) with my two teens, Genesis and Elijah. We were mostly just playing covers in breweries. But there were a LOT of family and friends coming out to see us, and it was the most fun I’ve had playing live in years. We have wanted to kind of up the ante a little bit, so I wrote ten songs over the past year and got hold of musicians from previous bands I have been in and asked for their help. They were delighted, and this project has now become a joy in quite a few ways of reconnection. We are launching a Kickstarter at the beginning of 2021. Here is the first single.
  11. Persona

    The Game

    It is interesting to me how years pass and you see something one way, and then time itself seems to change that thing and reshape it and give it new meaning. I really think this is true with The Game, and I know that many in the ARG community (alternate-reality gaming, or “Unfiction”) would reference this work as an earlier piece that stood for things they now find most rewarding: the experience of something being more important than whether what you are experiencing is fact or fiction, and the drive to solve the puzzle more important than whether the puzzle has any real world meaning, other than the chaotic and cathartic experience of solving it. I have actually thought about The Game many times over the past year in dealing with a few of the lighter ARGs on YouTube — most notably Ashvlogs, as it is the most intense. But film-wise, it was this summer when I watched the documentary The Institute, which is absolutely excellent and deals with a game a community played to its bitter end in San Francisco a few years back, and how it shaped and changed their entire lives — the people who fall into these games are longing for an experience very much like the main character in The Game, and much like it seemed to actually change his life, games like these are having huge, life-altering, very real impacts on the people who currently play them. The Game is very much a fore-runner to this movement.
  12. I didn’t see a dedicated thread on this one. Feel free to correct me if there is one. I admittedly don’t see as many movies as I once did when I frequented these boards more often. Some of that is due to other interests — there are some absolutely astounding graphic novels and old comic mini-series I’ve fallen in love with — and some of it is my own deal: just general boredom with movies, and probably a 2020 social issue with anything that I can’t scroll on holding my interest. ARGs in YouTube have been an exception to this, as the interactive nature of them has been so much fun to dig into. But this is the second film this year that I’ve seen that I know I’ll want to see again. (The first being the new Tarantino, which I loved.) I know that films like this have been made before. I’m thinking of Last Night at Marienbad or Mulholland Drive, but the film I am most reminded of in comparison here is La Moustache, due to its playfulness in the “lost narrative” situation. Then again, you could just compare it to older Kaufman films. But I feel like I like this one is better. There are scenes so strange, so, as I like to call it “surreal,” and I’ve said it here before but I’ll say it here again: I love it when film shows the power of film. Like impressionists that said, “A painting doesn’t have to look like a photograph,” or Romanticists that said, “Let’s break all the rules.” Outside of well-made horror, movies and films that still inspire me are the ones that press the limits, both in how they capture their story, as well as how we (I) receive it. I do not think at all that another viewing will get me any closer to an understanding of the movie regarding its structure, its narrative, maybe even what it has to say. But I like the idea of sitting with this one first, with the idea of seeing it again later, just to get a feel for its “weird.” Now that I know what I’ve gotten myself into, when I sit down later I’ll get to to experience this nutty thing on its own terms. Yeah. I’m gonna give this one another go. Already looking forward to it actually.
  13. Such a nice list you all have made this time around. I look forward to seeing the page and the write ups.
  14. Persona

    Nightwish

    I first heard of them here, if I remember correctly. I’m not really much of a metal guy. In fact in my old age, I have very little tolerance for much of the new stuff. I liked some metal as a teenager and even played in a Christian metal band for a year or two in high school that gigged quite a bit around the Chicagoland area. But I find much metal to be very restricting, kinda in a sense that if you want to grow at all, musically or even just in the sense of growing up, you tend to leave behind some of the infantile nature of hard rock and metal. Then something like this comes along and shakes things up. For me, this is where an old form meets and older form (opera) and they just plain mesh. After watching the above video, I did listen to “Endless Forms Most Beautiful,” and have listened since then too. And it is a powerful album. This is one of those bands that, if we are ever able to go to a concert again, I would really want to see. I can’t imagine what kind of power would be unleashed by these guys live.
  15. Thank you. I miss you A&Fers. It has been a little while, and trying to do this on the phone is a real change. But I hope to slither around here, at least a little bit.
  16. Hi. I don’t care for this network or these people and come to this story with a total bias. I didn’t know much about the scandal beforehand, most likely because I didn’t pay attention in the news cycle, most likely because even when/if I saw some of the headlines, I wrote it off: They’re a network of slimeballs. Of course there are stories like that. So my problem with this film is that it looks like a second grader with a digital camera shot and edited it. The hard zooms (remember the Duplass boys and how much they suck at filmmaking too?) are gratuitous, unnecessary, and take me right out of the moment. I hate this kind of camerawork, almost as much as I hate Fox News. Garbage movie. It’s too bad too, ‘cause who doesn’t want to see Fox News take a shot in the eye.
  17. Has it been noted in this forum that the IMDb message boards are going dead in two weeks? I know it is the last place one should go for serious discussion, or rather good discussion, but it's also the quickest and the easiest. IMDb basically announced that the bulk of what was happening on their boards wasn't positive. I find this move highly interesting.
  18. Both of the docs "Lost Soul" and "The Otherworld" are available on Netflix, and they each give off a Herzogian vibe. In both films, Stanley himself is as important as the subject matter of the film. He is an odd one, a mystic -- and the delivery of his stories is worth your time.
  19. Persona

    Villagers

    I stumbled upon these guys (this guy?) a few months ago via NPR First Listen. The new CD is "Darling Arithmetic," and it is fabulous, acoustic-driven folkie type stuff. Great melodies, passion with restraint, Bon Iver-ish perhaps. I stumbled across a YouTube video of an acoustic "Everything I am is Yours," which just had the lead singer on acoustic with a - gasp - harpist(!) - again, lush. Beautiful. It made sense. What didn't make sense to me was the discovery of some of their older tunes, which rock, and even sound a bit like the Black Keys.("Occupy Your Mind.") I'm going to have to fully check this band out - I'm loving everything I've heard from them so far. Any fans here?
  20. Persona

    The Helio Sequence

    I have been listening to this a lot at work. I have no idea how two guys could ever pull this together live.
  21. Persona

    Wilco - Star Wars

    I really love this recording. I haven't been a close follower of Wilco over the years, but I have liked the bit that I've heard here and there. I have a great cover of "How to Fight Loneliness" that my friend and I play at least once a week - one of our favorites to play live. What really surprises me when listening to Star Wars is how often the lead singer reminds me of Thurston Moore. Sometimes I think this is what Sonic Youth might sound like if they kept things in standard tuning and had an alt-country background. Is that a strange observation? Is that comparison true to past Wilco recordings?
  22. Oh my word, SP. Thank you for that -- one of the more fun articles I have read in a while.
  23. I want to see it, Ken -- for what it actually is, I guess -- but I also wish that there were a movie out there that had the guts to dig into Scientology as well as that old South Park episode did. I originally thought this might be that doc, but in reading about it, it isn't.
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