“There Are Things Known And There Are Things Unknown And Beween Are… The Doors” (Jim Morrison)

•July 4, 2007 • Leave a Comment

The Doors is a 1991 film about Jim Morrison and The Doors. It was directed by Oliver Stone, and stars Val Kilmer as Morrison, Meg Ryan as Pamela Courson (Morrison’s companion), Kevin Dillon as John Densmore, Kyle MacLachlan as Ray Manzarek, Frank Whaley as Robby Krieger and Kathleen Quinlan as Patricia Kennealy.

The film is very much focused on Morrison, portraying him as larger-than-life and an icon of 1960s rock and roll, counterculture, and the drug-using free love hippie lifestyle. But the depiction goes beyond the iconic: his alcoholism, interest in the spiritual plane and hallucinogenic drugs as entheogens, and, particularly, his obsession with death are threads which weave in and out of the film.

The film’s soundtrack contains over two dozen of The Doors songs; songs like… “Light my fire“, “Break on through (to the other side)“, “People are strange“, “Touch me“, “L.A. Woman“, “The end“, “Alabama song“, “Riders on the storm“, “Five to one” and more…

In the film, original recordings of the band are seamlessly combined with performances by Val Kilmer as Jim Morrison. Val is great as Jim and is also an uncanny look a like and also did his own singing (the real band said they couldn’t tell Val’s singing apart from Jim‘s).

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Passionate but overlong and incompetent biographical picture about Jim Morrison, the infamous lead singer of The Doors, the music he made was raw yet poetic, angry yet seductive. Film stumbles and bumbles along the pinpoints of Morrison‘s young adult life (he died at the age of 27)… from meeting his girlfriend, to quitting film school, to forming the band called “The Doors” with his friend, to playing in concerts and the infamous Ed Sullivan show incident, and of course, Jim‘s various outbursts of uncontrolled frenzy, Jim‘s unfaithfulness to his girlfriend, before showing his death in France.

This film will remind us how powerful drugs are… It shows the talent of Jim Morrison and how addicted he was into drugs and a self-destructive psychopathic freak. Still, the real tragedy is that such an obviously gifted and talented man just wasted his life so badly. I hope that this film will serve as a lesson to all musicians out there.

Article by Tix from Rakista.
Other resources: The New York Times Review (click here for the online version, or here to read it in pdf format).

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From Romania with Love. Episode 2: The Sweet Kiss of Glory

•May 29, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Romanian director Cristian Mungiu won the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival, Palm d’Or, on Sunday night (May 27) for his film “4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days“. Mungiu‘s performance is unprecedented in Romanian film history: only veteran director Liviu Ciulei managed to get the Cannes award for best direction with “Padurea Spanzuratilor” (in 1965).

4 months, 3 weeks & 2 days

Mungiu’s film will be presented for the first time in Romania at the Transylvania International Film Festival-TIFF.

“I bet on this move from the very beginning. I told all my friends it has huge chances of success. My only regret is that Ana Maria Marinca, without whom the film would not have been what it is, was not among the winners of the night, but I hope this will be fixed at TIFF“, Romanian film critic and TIFF director Mihai Chirilov told HotNews.ro.

He said the Cannes success was “a step forward for Romanian film making, a validation of a tendency, a confirmation at the highest level. But of course there’s always room for better”.

The story of the film takes place in Romania before 1989, in a totalitarian regime. The title tells the period that the main character, Gabita (actress Laura Vasiliu) let things happen before searching for somebody willing to perform an illegal abortion.

Otilia, her friend, helps Gabita find the necessary money for the procedure.

Mungiu’s film also won the FIPRESCI award granted by the International Film Critics Federation in Cannes.

This year’s festival also brought another important prize for Romanian film making: director Cristian Nemescu, killed in a car accident last year, received a post-mortem “Un certain regard” award for his unfinished film “California dreaming (endless)“. The same distinction went to another Romanian director in 2005: Cristian Puiu for “The Death of Mr. Lazarescu“.

Source: HotNews.ro.
More on this film: “4 months, 3 weeks & 2 days” official website.

From Romania with Love. Episode 1: Transylvania International Film Festival

•May 23, 2007 • 1 Comment

The sixth edition of Transylvania International Film Festival (TIFF) will take place both in Cluj Napoca, Romania, between the 1st and 10th of June, and in The European Cultural Capital – Sibiu, Romania, between the 4th and 10th of June.

12 films from 12 countries are about to compete this year within the sixth edition of Transylvania International Film Festival (TIFF) for the Transylvania Trophy.

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Either a black and white silent movie (The Antena / La antena from Argentina), or a story about the end of the adolescence (the swidish Falkenberg Farewell), a picture about the moral dilemmas (the serbian The Trap / Klopka), or an italian film with the famous choreographer Eduard Gabia, playing the main character (Cover Boy), a story about confused and acid parent-children relationship  (Children / Börn from Iceland), or the american A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints, either the already awarded  (the spanish Azul oscuro casi negro and La sagrada familia from Chile), each film in the competition is the first or at least the second feature of it’s director.

This year, in the TIFF Official Competition, Romania is represented by the same film that represents it in the Cannes Official Competion – 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days. The director Cristian Mungiu returns to the TIFF Competition, after his first feature, Occident, won the Transylvania Trophy  of the first TIFF Competition in 2002.

More on the festival: TIFF’s official website.

25 years of ‘eureka’ moments

•May 23, 2007 • Leave a Comment

An article published by USA Today on May 23rd, 2007.

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“We’re a nation of inventors in garages and corporate labs, creating new gadgets and services that delight us and occasionally drive us crazy. USA TODAY chose inventions that changed our lives since 1982″.

1. Cellphones
Car phones were around in the 1970s, but it wasn’t until 1983 that Motorola introduced the first widely available handheld cellphone. The DynaTAC 8000x weighed almost 2 pounds, but it still cost $3,995.

2. Laptop computers
It was about as portable as a sewing machine. But the 28-pound Compaq PortableCompaq Computer’s very first product – was the first portable IBM-compatible PC on the market. More than 53,000 sold in the year after its 1983 launch, despite a price usually topping $3,000.

3. BlackBerries
An obscure Canadian pager company, Research In Motion, shortened attention spans around the world with the launch of the BlackBerry mobile e-mail device in 1999.

Click here to read and enjoy the full article.

401 Projects

•April 18, 2007 • 6 Comments

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401 Projects is a non-commercial photography gallery in New York City, created as an exhibition space to showcase the work of both emerging and well-established artists.

Every exhibition is complimented by a special program; be it a lecture, portfolio review, or roundtable discussion.

“Face of Fashion” – National Portrait Gallery (London)

•April 18, 2007 • 1 Comment

15 February – 28 May 2007, Wolfson Gallery

Face of Fashion focuses on the portraits of five outstanding fashion photographers from Europe and America: Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott, Corinne Day, Steven Klein, Paolo Roversi and Mario Sorrenti. It is the first exhibition of its kind, celebrating the innovation and diversity of current fashion portraiture.

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In the contemporary fashion world, models, actors, musicians and designers frequently swap places. The exhibition highlights the relationship between fashion and celebrity and illustrates the extraordinary intimacy that often develops between photographer and subject. The exhibition is curated by Susan Bright and the installation is designed by David Adjaye.

Kate Moss auction pictures show how life with Pete has taken away her looks

•April 18, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Back in 1990 Kate Moss was one of the country’s true beauties – as this stunning previously unseen photograph shos which is going under the hammer.

It is in stark contrast to more recent snaps of Kate, looking haggard and drawn since getting together with junkie Pete Doherty.

Eerily some of the pictures up for sale at auction house Christie’s were infamous for kickstarting what became known as the ‘heroin chic’ look.

“Kate Taken In Croydon” (1990)

“Kate Taken in Croydon”, by Corinne Day

Taken at a quarry in her home town of Croydon the unseen picture of the model aged just 16 was taken by photographer Corinne Day two years after Moss was discovered at JFK airport at the age of 14.

“Kate Taken In Croydon” (1990) is being sold by a friend of the model, and is expected to fetch £6,000.

Day’s famous image of “Kate At Home”, taken for their first Vogue collaboration in 1993 and showing the then 19-year-old dressed in pants and pink vest and surrounded by fairy lights, is expected to sell for £7,000.

The Vogue photographs moved grunge into the mainstream and were infamous for kickstarting what was known as the “heroin chic” look.

Two naked portraits of Moss include a 1996 platinum print by Irving Penn, expected to sell for about £22,000, and Albert Watson‘s giant two-metres-square image of a naked Moss (£15,000).

A complete set of six prints of Moss without make-up, by Chuck Close, could be snapped up for between £15,000 and £20,000.

Christie’s London head of photographs Yuka Yamaji said: “Kate Moss is a cultural icon and arguably the most influential model of our day.

“Discovered at the age of 14, Kate has been captured by master photographers the world over and we are delighted to be offering a number of images of the supermodel, including an early never-before-seen shot of Kate at a quarry in Croydon, taken by Corinne Day”.

(Source: thisislondon.co.uk)