Archive for February, 2004

THE EYE

13 February 2004

[Picture of oil on canvas - The Eye]It is never a good idea to talk about old girlfriends.

So I don’t. Additionally, I never play the songs or read the poems relating to these now-mythical creatures.  Not just out of politeness or sensitivity for my wife, but for myself; these people don’t belong in our world.

Hence, I spent a lot of time removing photographs and other artefacts — it’s difficult because I am a natural hoarder, and because some of it is actually to do with me, my past, and all that. So I condensed everything down to a small box of mementos — an old shoe box in each case.  Throwing away the rest of the stuff. I couldn’t just do it all in one go, could I? One day I might open these boxes, or then again (and much more likely), I may just throw them away unopened — when I move house or something.

It’s an altogether peculiar state of affairs, when you think about it.  For example, I was very pleased with some of the portraits I did, especially the ones done with oil on canvas.  It was quite hard to destroy them all, and in fact all that remains is this digital photograph of an eye.

The entire portrait is long gone, it was more Vermeer than Vallejo, even I don’t know why, particularly as it was painted in the mid 1990s.

I came across this simply because it is not in the box (it was on an old back-up CD full of JPGs), and so I thought I would put it up here to stare at me, at us, from the past! Woooo! Creepy or what LOL!

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IRREVERSIBLE

5 February 2004

[Picture of Video cover of Irreversible]Irreversible is a French film with two prolonged scenes of physical violence (but no explosions or guns), it is a film about ethics — justification, retaliation, revenge, reacting to events.

If the story was told in the normal direction or timeline, it would not be the same nor would it be as effective; it is constantly asking YOU ‘what would you do if…’ and it makes you see a single event in different ways. Therefore, it is more about what YOU — the viewer — bring to the film than the simple enough story.

It is more about what YOU bring to witnessing an event than the event itself.

For example, you see the homosexual club and the violence — and you may think it is about homophobia. Later on you find out that they are acting in retaliation for a sexual assault, and that they were affected by strong drink and drugs — and powerful emotions (they couple had just argued, there was sexual tension in that one man was the boyfriend and the other was a visiting ex-boyfriend).

As the each piece of information is revealed — in reverse order, your views on what you have just seen have to alter.

You change your mind about the attack on the homosexual, you change your mind about the ex-boyfriend’s emotional involvement, and so on.

The film works on many levels too — it is called IRREVERSIBLE (despite being played in reverse). the reason it is not called REVERSIBLE is that each new piece of information switches the characters’ lives down a route – each of which is irreversible, life-changing, undo-able… and important.

The script seems as erratic as the camera movement at the beginning (to suit the panic and giddiness of the end-game), but as the film progresses, everything becomes steadier – throughout, though, every single word is carefully considered… even seemingly meaningless asides take on importance when the earlier scene is shown.

Basically, you are challenged to rethink the events shown – as you go, time and again. You may feel disgusted at the two main violent scenes, but you are forced to re-appraise these scenes continually, (they are of fundamental importance to the story which is why they are so prolonged) so what you felt at the time of first viewing is not what you feel at the end of the film – something which would have been impossible to do if the film was not played in the reverse-style format.

It is not for everyone, but it is actually worth watching this gruesome film as it really challenges you where you need challenged. Having said that, I FFWD’d through the violence (I don’t need to dwell to get the impact). People can be so ugly.  This film’s approach is refreshingly meaningful! Undo unto others…

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