i think anyone who’s on the path to be a gun-for-hire probably deserves to be. they probably don’t have a burning passion or enough of their own stories. i’ve turned down so much money, but my best films always came from turning down a lot of money. i never did anything to get somewhere else. I always just dug my heels in and did what i wanted to do next. that gets harder and harder, but i’ve never approached my work as a means to an end.

– richard linklater

My Thoughts On…For No Good Reason

I’m writing a feature review on the film for Directors Notes this week, but wanted to log seeing it here, and give you a heads up.

It’s a wonderful documentary about the amazing artist Ralph Steadman, one of my favourite artists. If you like his gonzo scratches you’ll love it.

what can filmmakers do? filmmakers have got to ask the big questions really - not just look at the symptoms, not just go: “oh there’s a victim, let’s tell their story.” you’ve got to look at the big questions of why […] and you’ve got to have some understanding of the elements in society that can change it

– ken loach

My Thoughts On…Trance

Art heist movies always work best as capers. The frivolous pursuit by rich people of ultra expensive items demands a knowingness, a glamour, a pomposity. 

It doesn’t work as a straight thriller because without caper charm it’s hard to create empathy, and so the mechanics and logic come under much more scrutiny. 

As a result Danny Boyle’s film is sadly, utter nonsense. It’s drivel. Dross. Rubbish, and even Vincent Cassel can’t save it. Yeah. It’s that bad. It’s so far up its own hypnotised arse that the frankly ridiculous plot and self-important performances are exposed for the logic defying mess they are. 

I like Danny Boyle, certainly a number of his films fall apart in the last third but mostly they contain imagination and passion and tension. Here, there’s none of that, and I think it’s because the tone is wrong, all wrong. But then, I do love a good caper. So maybe I’m biased.

No. It’s nonsense. 

My Thoughts On…Me And You And Everyone We Know

Beyond the use of one of my all time favourite songs (Spiritualized’s cover of The Troggs’ Anyway That You Want Me’ I just love the bravery, and the awkwardness and the determination to break through the loneliness, the alienation, and the disconnection and to be blatantly meaningful, hopeful and full of love in the face of a culture of cynicism, distance and irony.

It’s hard, but then the best things are. And because John Hawkes.

Hospice (11)

@neldina

Still waiting on the Arts Council bid, but the inspirations and thoughts are still flowing. 

The project seems to be drawing heavily on fairytale imagery, particularly woodland and forests. Some key references David has collected so far lean towards these archetypes (see his references so far here).

And that’s fine, it seems a good fit. Despite the story being contemporary and not taking place in woodland or forests it definitely seems to be a spell that is cast over the tone and atmosphere of the piece.

So it was with great joy and curiosity that I viewed a friend’s work at an exhibition last night.

Transition/Pareja is currently showing at the University of Bedfordshire and features the work of 4 Latvian artists. I know one of them, Nelda Karklina and her work really resonated with me and I thought immediately of Hospice.

Her four pieces feature mythical creatures deep in woodland and they emit a feeling of power, fear, loss and being lost. They are beautifully rendered and mix the delicate with the strong and the colours teeter between pink flesh and red blood hues. They are incredibly powerful; primitive yet resonant with the current. 

You don’t get a sense of how the texture affects the piece from the image below (one of the 4 pieces on display) but hopefully it will prompt you to pop in and see the show. It’s free, and runs until May 24th, and is fantastic.

Thank you to Nelda for the image to use here as we document our own artistic journey. Follow her tumblr here where Nelda explains her work with great eloquence.

Basquiat
I couldn’t find the Basquiat painting I mentioned in my last post. I have a postcard of it somewhere, but this one is a bit like my mind at the moment, and if you don’t know Jean Michel’s work, it’s a great example.

Basquiat

I couldn’t find the Basquiat painting I mentioned in my last post. I have a postcard of it somewhere, but this one is a bit like my mind at the moment, and if you don’t know Jean Michel’s work, it’s a great example.