MonthMay 2003

See What I Did There?

So, I watched the final episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer ever the other day, and it was reasonably fun, I guess. Frankly, after season 6 and 7, I’m not too unhappy to see the show put out of it’s misery. Don’t get me wrong, there were some good episodes, but overall … eh, it’s not grabbing me like it used to.

I particularly disliked their little stunt with the Shiny Scythe That Isn’t A Scythe At All showing up out of nowhere in the last two epsiodes, to save the day.

Firstly it’s very annoying to have something like that just show up and make everything good.

And Secondly, scythes have curved blades and curved handles! What you have there is an _Axe_, dammit. In this particular case, to be precise, it’s a Deus Axe Machina.

The Matrix: Reloaded blows goats … I have proof

I’ve been kinda holding back for a day or so before posting about Matrix: Reloaded, just to be sure that I’ve got my reasons for disliking it straight in my head. And let me state that again, and very clearly, I surely did dislike this soulless sequel. I am, in fact, gobsmacked that it was even made by the same guys as the first one.

Here are my personal key reasons for loathing this cinematic suppository:

– Discontinuity from the first film. At the end of The Matrix, Neo can fly into agents and explode them from the inside. Neo can return from the dead. Neo bends the matrix to his will. They can’t shoot him. They can’t stop him. They can’t even trace his phone calls. He is a risen Christ-figure, a saviour, so much a God in his environment that the laws of phsyics no longer apply to him, he is no longer even shacked by gravity itself. He calls the system itself to tell them that he now has an agenda, he will awaken everyone in the matrix and let them see what’s what. He KNOWS what he’s up to.

At the start of Reloaded, Neo … can fight better than the other dudes, and WOAH! Can fly! … and that’s it. He has no idea what he’s meant to do. They make a point of having him state this! Fuck that shit.

– Editing. You should never _NOTICE_ editing in a movie, in my opinion. You should certainly never ponder what drugs the editor(s) were on when they did their work, and you should never EVER actually cringe in your chair when presented with shitpile editing.

– Score. “What score?” you ask? Movie 1 had an ass-kicking score. I cannot remember a single track from the Reloaded score. And it was apparently the same dude who did the work. Bizarre.

– Subtext. Or, in this case, Supertext. I can almost imagine one of the CSI guys looking at my corpse on a table, and saying into his little tape-recorder “Death appears to be result of sledgehammer blows which have driven a movie theme directly into the brain.” Yes, yes, you wanted to make a movie which dealt with the nature of reality, and the relationship of man to machine. I get it. I GET IT. I got it the FIRST TIME. You don’t NEED TO FUCKING EXPLAIN IT POINT BY POINT. I don’t need _stilted fucking exposition_ from Councillor Exposition, it is OBVIOUS what you’re getting it. Thank you!

– Fight scenes – Static. Pointless. Viscuous compared to the fluid excellence of Movie 1. Crappy music. I was mostly bored.

– Shagging and Dancing. Don’t get me wrong, I _like_ shagging, I like it fine. I don’t mind sex scenes, nor for that matter do I mind slightly softcore dance scenes. And I’m sure that if you want to intercut two of these kinds of scenes together, in order to OH SO FUCKING DEFTLY make YET ANOTHER point about how humanity differs from machine, that’s fine too. It’s just that I DO think that a few seconds of it would be fine, given that it doesn’t advance the plot in any way, or anything. I’m REALLY not sure why you’d want to have these intercut scenes go on for .. oh, hell, I don’t know … about six hours, it felt like.

– CGI. Yes, CGI. A lot of the fight scenes were pure GCI. They were. They so _so_ were. Really, really, REALLY CGI. In fact, bits of that one scene with Neo and the Lots of Agent Smiths looked like a fucking PS2 game. I wish they’d stuck to wire work. This was simply shitty texturing, and unrealistic-looking CGI. What the fuck were they thinking?

and lastly:

– The Dialogue. Oh, sweet Jesus, the dialogue. So very very much of it. Dialogue like .. great .. big … albatrosses, yeah that’s it, albatrosses sculped out of lead, painted all my least favourite colours, inscribed with stiff, pensive gothic poetry written by livejournal users who’ve just broken up with their latest mouth-breathing partners, and then hurled into the air by catapults, only to land directly in my auditory canals, while thousands of howler monkeys look on and screech wildly. The next movie, I hope it’s all non-CGI fight scenes, with no dialogue whatsoever. I might allow one “Woah!” from Keanu, but that’s it.

Things that were good:

The one-liners of Huge Weaving(s) and the silver agents. Bits of the freeway chase scene were excellent. That’s about it, for me.

I will not be making much of an effort to see Matrix: Revolutions, based on this film.

 

‘stralya

And so I’m back! From outer space! Okay, no, Sydney, but that makes the song much less interesting.

Item: Sydney is MUCH more fun when you’re on an expense account, than when you’re not. It goes from being a grubby, hot, unpleasant town to a scintilating jewel of the pacific, where little elves bring you drinks and delicious food and then bowingly depart, leaving behind joy and happiness, and taking with them only your corporate credit card details. Kickass.

Item: I have just finished reading William Gibson’s latest novel, “Pattern Recognition” and it’s excellent. Superb, in fact. Possibly his best work, in my opinion, and that’s including the “wow!” factor of reading Neuromancer for the first time, back in The Day. Everyone go buy Pattern Recognition, and read it. It makes me want to take up marketing as a career. 🙂

Item: On marketing, I’ve been thinking greatly about marketing concepts for my little boutique ISP, now that it’s close to completion. Some of them are good ideas, I think. I need to price NZ TV advertisments, but I strongly suspect that peak-time ads are going to really really not be cheap.

Item: The purchase of the new apartment has gone unconditional. Mmmmmmm, yes. I cannot wait to get in there. I also have renovation plans, which I really must sketch out and show to Annette for her opinion. I’ll have to abandon them if she doesn’t approve. The problem is that she’s greatly into organic spaces and concepts, and I’m more into a Bauhaus sort of style, and never the two shall meet. Tricky! Suggestions for refit styles are welcome!