I didn’t listen to Joy Division, but I have a new appreciation for their music after seeing this bio pic about singer Ian Curtis. I’m also looking forward to seeing the new documentary about the band.
The film is great even if you have never listened to the band. It takes place in Britain in the late 70s and early 1980 as the post punk scene is burgeoning. It follows Ian and the band as they develop a sound and begin to grow a following. Throughout the movie, Ian, who is a little different than everyone else, grows more distant from those around him as the pressures of family and band increase. His lyrics are poetic and dark, and his stage presence has that unique possessed feeling you get from the great performers. He becomes epileptic, which increases his emotional distance and depression. It’s filmed in beautiful black and white, which reflects the town they lived in and wanted to escape from, as well as his depression. Speaking of the town, Ian says in the film, “Every thing’s gray.” Continue reading “Control – Ian Curtis”
I guess I’m feeling nostalgic again for those innocent middle-school days. I saw some X-Men: Mutant Massacre comics on sale on Ebay and was reminded how much I loved that series. I had a subscription to X-Factor at the time, which was a spin-off featuring the five original X-Men. My cousin got the X-Men comics. Once the Mutant Massacre series started we had to borrow each others books to keep up, since it was a crossover series between the two teams. Thor, Daredevil, and some lesser known comics were also involved in a minor way.
The series had a certain mystery noir to it, and it was released around the same time as Elektra: Assassin. A lot of the action takes place in the underground tunnels of New York with a band of assassins killing the mutant community that lives in the tunnels. The continuing storyline over eight issues or so, and the, what seemed at the time, more mature action and theme grabbed me. Characters were getting killed and some favorites were gravely injured. That’s serious stuff for an eighth-grader in the 1980s. Remember, there was no internet and no violent video games.
Wikipedia-Mutant Massacre, Marvel Gallery
I was eight years old when Raiders of the Lost Ark came out. My mom, my aunt, and I went to a Chinese buffett before the movie. I think I ate like seven egg rolls, which were my favorite at the time.
I remember sitting near the front in the theater and grabbing their legs when the boulder was chasing Indy. When the Nazis opened the Ark, I slid to the floor. The face melting scene was too much. Images from that film and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom are forever etched in my cultural consciousness. Sad, I know.
With the fourth movie coming out soon, they’ve made Topps trading cards with some classic characters. Check them out.
I will spend the New Year at home with my family. No exciting parties- the kids are watching Shrek 2 on TV and eating popcorn. I was thinking of writing about Jim Carroll (the poet, diarist, rock singer) last night, but realized it would take multiple posts and an amount of work I’m unwilling to commit at the moment to do the man justice. I had the pleasure of seeing him give a reading at a local college in the mid-’90s. He was excellent. Among his own work, Jim read a poem by Nicholas Christopher, which sent chills and silence through the room. The poem is called “Terminus.” I posted it below. I think besides Jim’s own “Eight Fragments for Kurt Cobain,” this was the best reading that night. The poem is about the things humans do and have done since the beginning of time. I post it now, at the end of the year, in an attempt to make us think about this long history we have of doing horrible things to one another. Let’s try to change individually. Continue reading “Terminus”
The Zeppelin post put me in mind of my thirteen-year-old days. I read the Elektra: Assassin graphic novel, which collected all eight issues written by Frank Miller and painted by Bill Sienkiewicz, until the spine broke and the pages fell out all over the inside of my locker. I had never seen a comic drawn or written like it before.
Elektra is the daughter of a Greek ambassador who is assassinated. She is trained in childhood by a master assassin / kung-fu guy. We get a brief glimpse into her background and psychosis. Now she is planning to assassinate the President, Ken Wind, who appears to be an anti-christ-like figure. He is referred to as “The Beast.” Continue reading “Elektra: Assassin – comic book love”