cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
I saw the movie! I'm just going to bullet point everything that comes to mind because coherent reviews are some way beyond me at this point.

spoilers spoiling for a fight )

ETA: Someone on FFA caught an interview with the writers. Again, SPOILERS: http://fail-fandomanon.dreamwidth.org/195638.html?thread=1072564278#cmt1072564278
cloudsinvenice: Tree silhouetted against a twilight sky, with full moon behind it (Twilight tree/moon)
I get asked about making these every year, so this time I thought I'd take pictures during the process and make a tutorial. This is probably more than you need to know (in the later stages it's not unlike working with pumpkin; there's just more resistance), but here's something to bookmark in case you make one next year or for some other festival with lanterns. And please post a picture if you do!

You'll that vegetable which goes by one of the above names, depending where you live, plus a good sturdy vegetable knife (whatever you use to cut carrots will work; they're of a similar density/brittleness) and a dessertspoon or tablespoon, and it helps a lot to have a craft/hobby/breakaway knife for the detail work.

'Aha! I see you've played Knifey Spoony before!' )

Happy Hallowe'en! :D
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
I can't believe it's been a month since I did this, but then it was a very busy one...

...and then I cleverly left in the filler text and had to edit the cut )
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
...but this is an incredibly weird list:

http://www.listchallenges.com/books-youll-never-brag-about-having-read/

I mean, there are the obvious blockbusters that people love to mock, like Twilight, 50 Shades of Grey and The Da Vinci Code, but otherwise a lot of the significance escapes me; they seem to be American popular political/psychological hits, plus the odd work of Nazi propaganda that a lot of history students will actually have read because they're studying the period.

Anyway, I've read 12/100, and I've got Peyton Place on the shelf waiting for me to get round to it...
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
We've just spent the last half hour watching videos of this cockatoo. He's fantastic!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYzqEbfRSSs
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
Close enough, I guess. But I've decided to give myself an amnesty on the backlog; there comes a point when it's just irrational to attempt to catch up on five months' worth of unwritten-up books.

So, most recently... )
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
Naturally after the tumult of The End Of Hannibal, I had to get back into Ripper Street. I am assured that it's worth hanging in there for, but my god, it's accomplished more wailing and gnashing of teeth in this house in the first four episodes of season 3 than Hannibal did in an entire three seasons. Yes, even the episode with the... laboratory slides...

Reassuringly, vidders have made two versions of the Friends opening credits, remixed a la Hannibal:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XvbStXI97i8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-9MkUA94q0
cloudsinvenice: Tony Stark removing his old arc reactor (Iron Man unplug)
The story of the women's history museum which mysteriously transformed (via the process, often contentious in British life, of getting planning permission) into a sensationalist-looking Jack the Ripper museum is making its way around the world. Here's a few interesting links:

- The Guardian: Jack the Ripper's victims deserve to be commemorated. But like this?
- [personal profile] londonkds: Fisking the Jack the Ripper Museum
- 38 Degrees petition to Tower Hamlets Council: Celebrate Suffragettes Not Serial Killers
- Protest at the museum opening on Tuesday 4th August! Women's history is not Jack the Ripper!

Other things:

- Jacqueline Wilson has written a new take on What Katy Did.
- Twitter, unable to grasp that endless growth might not be possible or desirable, considers being more like Facebook.
- [livejournal.com profile] arcadiaego informs me of the existence of a longstanding fan project at [profile] read_lotr_aloud, where a small group of fans have spent most of the last decade building up a chapter-by-chapter audiobook. Sean Astin even reads the first section! Is anyone aware of other projects like this?
- [livejournal.com profile] ladysisyphus has an epic post on The Blair Witch Project and the movies that tried to emulate its impact without really understanding it. So delicious to see a good chunk of horror meta on LJ!
- In other news, shoestring film production company Mansfield Dark have come up with a beautiful 12-minute shadow puppet version of Count Magnus by M.R. James. You can see the trailer here and also find a link to buy the DVD, which comes with a lovely piece of art on the slipcase. Mine arrived this morning, to my considerable delight. The Mansfield Dark guys are both talented and ingenious, making everything from this gorgeousness to comedy to LGBT thrillers, so go check them out.
- A friend recommended browser extension FB Purity as a solution to the man ways in which Facebook is annoying. I haven't installed it yet, but perhaps some of you feel like trying it too.
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
...Robin of Sherwood is coming back as a one-off radio play with many of the original cast! :D

http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/tv/news/a659864/1980s-tv-series-robin-of-sherwood-is-returning-as-a-radio-play.html#~pjAhWs6pYu22zJ

ETA: Here's another article from the Radio Times website, with a slightly different list. Very encouraging so far... http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2015-07-23/robin-of-sherwood-to-return-with-stars-jason-connery-ray-winstone-judi-trott-and-clive-mantle
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
...at least, insofar as it furnishes me with gems like this video:

A Horse Says 'Benny Hill' In LOTR
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Iron Man flying)
I fell out of doing the Wednesday reading meme back in April, which is unfortunate because at the time I still had a backlog dating from the end of February to work on. So, nearly five months' worth of books...

...will certainly not be tackled in this one post, but I can make a dent in them at least. )

Well, this has taken me into April. I'm going to try and post another batch of these every day until I get to what I'm reading now...
cloudsinvenice: 1890s woman sprawling exhausted on a sofa (Young Lady After The Ball)
To my utter delight, it emerges that The Independent has a feature that is basically Fandom Wank in non-fannish contexts. The examples that brought this to light:

- Two men have ridiculous fight about how many days are in a week

Marks and Spencer didn't give an elderly couple two tea bags and people on Facebook can't cope
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
I originally typed "too hired to think", which I think says it all really.

Inspirograph - go and play with it!

Budget 2015

Jul. 8th, 2015 11:30 pm
cloudsinvenice: woman resting her head on her hand, thinking (woman thinking (Joseph Kleitsch)
Well, today was the Budget. I've been very lucky today; the changes they're making don't shaft me, though they do a hell of a lot of other people. I've got friends who aren't sure yet how they're going to be affected - we're still trying to clarify, for example, whether contribution-based ESA will behave in the same way as regular ESA under the changes, or whether it'll be eliminated as has previously been discussed. I talked to a lot of friends today and people are variously bemused, scared, despairing - and that's just the disabled people I know.

Maintenance grants for low-income students are being abolished and replaced with loans (because students aren't in enough debt, apparently). And while the Chancellor huffed and puffed a lot about how great the Tories are and how much they value the institutions of the BBC and the NHS, when you read below the lines, they are notably undermining them and still working towards their privatisation. The National Living Wage, meanwhile, is a joke - it'll be lower than the existing minimum wage. Correction: very much to my surprise and pleasure, this is wrong: it will in fact be higher, which just shows the need not to report stuff without checking. Details of this, and further fact-checking of the Budget claims, can be found here: https://fullfact.org/factcheck/economy/budget_summer_2015_osborne_harman-46357

It's not all bad news - Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) mounted a courageous action in which they completely blocked Westminster Bridge and the front of Parliament, ensuring that George Osborne had to be taken to deliver his speech via an underground route. I don't know how well covered this been in the mainstream media, but I urge you to share the YouTube videos wherever you can online - it is so, so psychologically important that people, both disabled and able-bodied, see resistance; that they see ordinary people like them occupying public spaces and communicating our message. Chunkymark, the Artist Taxi Driver, has various bits of footage of DPAC: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGThM-ZZBba1Zl9rU-XeR-A

Something I've been thinking about for the last couple of years is the fact that we're living through history, but history is often recorded in a biased way. We have to make sure that this doesn't happen - yes, we have to fight austerity and prejudice now, but we also need to look to posterity and record our experiences and observations in every way possible. I'm not just talking about the internet - if you've spent long enough online, then you've seen a lot of websites come and go. What I'm saying is, don't leave our cultural repository of these events to any one ephemeral medium or platform. Get the message out every way you can.

Please note that this is a public post. I welcome your comments but wanted to highlight this because I know this affects some of you in very personal ways and I wanted you to be aware in case you are sharing personal details.
cloudsinvenice: Tree silhouetted against a twilight sky, with full moon behind it (Twilight tree/moon)
For a short time I felt a ridiculous sense of achievement: I'd finally tracked down the text of something I'd once seen being performed by Harry Secombe (90% sure it was him, anyway) on a BBC archive clip. The sketch consisted of him explaining that there's no such work as Paradise Lost, based on the assertion that none of us knows anyone who's read the whole thing. (I suspect a fair few of you would disprove that, but it was funny.) The Daily Mail (so it's good for something...) supplied the context that it had been written by Bernard Levin for Ned Sherrin's That Was The Week That Was, and I actually thought that I'd found the full text on the website of a literary magazine, The Foliate Oak, except that their poem on the subject (which I like very much) is credited to Mark J. Mitchell, and doesn't contain the quote that the DM article included.

Despite a YouTube search, the sketch 'There Is No Such Book As Paradise Lost' remains elusive...
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
The bookmarks bar has got a bit cluttered again...

Rolling Stone - Hannibal: TV's Happiest Meal
DreadCentral.com - Don Mancini Talks Joining Hannibal Season 3 - Part 1 Part 2 Part 3
[tumblr.com profile] genufa - nice Tumblr fanblog with lots of great meta; I forget who recced this, but thank you!
SoundOnSight.com - KCC: Reitzell’s dreamy, jazzy score adds depth to Hannibal, Ep. 3.01, “Antipasto”
MetaFilter.com - [personal profile] katzenfabrik informed me that they have fantastic Hannibal meta in their FanFare: Hannibal section
The Dinner Party Show Hannibalism Part 1 with Bryan Fuller
ACollectiveMind.com - The Women of NBC's Hannibal
And a friend on Tumblr recommended their friend's Bloomaurier tag. It does not disappoint. :D
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
I've been gathering up links on Mad Max: Fury Road for the past couple of weeks, and I think it's time to actually post them!

Imperator Furiosa: The Hero We Need - David Mack talks about character functions and storytelling mechanics in an interesting way that has wider implications.

Mad Max: Fury Road is less radical than its b-movie influences - for the Guardian, Noah Berlatsky looks at women's prison exploitation movies and how their tropes have percolated down to Fury Road. (Actually, my biggest question about the approach to race in the movie is where it is set - I'd assumed Australia, and in that case you'd expect their world to be heir to the very specific history, and present, issues of racism there. Does anyone know more about this?)

Mad Max as Feminist Ally - a deliciously detailed personal response by Tansy Rayner Roberts.

Crone Wars: on the mythology of Fury Road at Lashes and Stars. I am SO into this Maid/Mother/Crone archetype in the movie and I'm really happy someone wrote about it!

Mad Max is a Feminist Playbook for Surviving Dystopia, by Laurie Penny is typically snappily written and made me go, "YES! YES! YES!"

Mad Max: Fury Road - Furiosa #1 - YOU GUYS, THERE IS A COMIC ABOUT FURIOSA. WHY DID I NOT THINK TO PICK THIS UP IN TOWN ON THURSDAY. WHY.

And last but by no means least, Elizabeth's Mad Max meta masterpost by [livejournal.com profile] arcadiaego over on Tumblr has SO MUCH MORE STUFF; this is the roundup that inspired my roundup and it is glorious.
cloudsinvenice: sepia photo of man at typewriter with cats on his shoulders and desk (Default)
Okay, so here are some bullet-pointed thoughts in lieu of a coherent review. It's one of those weird movies where I really enjoyed the whole experience but still have a lot of criticisms, and on rewatching I'll probably still enjoy the character moments but feel it has mixed success as an entry in a series. Remember, I critque because I love...

spoilers abound and will presumably abound in the comments )

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