“Through a dirty pane of glass” – the Brothers Quay

From an interview transcript on Senses of Cinema:

Their films in recent years have confused the boundaries between live action and animation and it seems that it is in this direction that the Quay Brothers have chosen to pursue their experiments. Aside from their films, the Quays have produced video clips, stage décors, advertisements, and dance videos. This multifaceted mode of expression can only in part explain their success. This success ultimately rests on the elusive power of their films, which have elicited the curiosity and admiration of animation directors, film students, visual artists, literary scholars, philosophers. It seems that all their films address a certain ‘plurality of margins’, precisely because they resist all forms of distinct classifications. They are, in other words, invitations for an intense journey, a walk through an unpolished looking-glass.

Watch them on YouTube before lawyers send nasty cease-and-desist letters and get them all taken off:

The Epic of Gilgamesh (1985)

(Thanks Table of Malcontents)

Evil looks better? Go figure.

Have been getting up to date with the latest releases from Kaiyodo’s Revoltech line of poseable action figures. Got my eye on the EVAs: Unit 02 and Unit 05 from the movies.

thanks to William Tan! Go visit his blog!

Yes, two releases of Unit 05, one of which is a limited edition. Both have different accessories so if you want the whole set you’ve got to buy them all (like William Tan here.)

I’ve always thought Unit 05 looked the coolest. Must be the wings.

The older Kaiyodo releases are bigger and look more impressive than the Revoltechs, but are harder to find these days, more expensive, and admittedly less poseable. There were two sets with Unit 05 — a vanilla one with wings (above), and a gory (true to the movie) set with a half-chewed Unit 02 and other goodies.

Still, the new Revoltech figures look good (Unit 05 pics)

Another figure appearing on store shelves soon is the evil alter ego of Saber, from the series Fate stay/night. Again, much better-looking than her heroic sibling (in blue and silver, below).

Saber Alter Saber

Guy Maddin and “Brand Upon the Brain!”

This GreenCine post has links to a few recent interviews with Guy Maddin, one of my favorite filmmakers, as he takes his new work Brand Upon The Brain! on tour across America.

According to The New York Times:

“Brand Upon the Brain!” is his most nakedly personal film, chronicling a flurry of traumas that befall a youngster named Guy Maddin. Conceived as a live spectacle without a pre-recorded soundtrack, it is also the closest he has come to a pure silent feature, not that purity is a pertinent concept in the case of the magpielike Mr. Maddin and his dense, crossbred melodramas.

With “Brand Upon the Brain!” he tries to reinvent the silent movie as theatrical event. The film had its premiere in September at the Toronto International Film Festival with an orchestra, a singer (billed as a castrato), an interlocutor (a tradition derived from the Japanese art of benshi) and sound effects by Foley artists in lab coats.

Any chance of an Asia tour and a stopover in Singapore? Minuscule, the odds. Sigh.

Aren’t games realities too?

Creating a shared experience of a possible future, by using new media tools with mass participation – videos, phone calls and audio, images, and blogs and other writing – in an alternate reality game.

Each contribution helps the game arrive at a larger truth. No team of experts knows better than a given individual what effect an oil shock would have upon that individual’s life, or what action he or she will take to cope. Personal reactions to our simulated oil shock, placed in context with many other points of view, will help us all realize what’s at stake in our oil-fired culture.

Take a look at World Without Oil :: Document Your Life In The New Reality

(From Boing Boing, which also attributes World Without Oil to the astounding
Jane McGonigal.

I still get excited when I recall I Love Bees, where McGonigal was lead designer. What really appeals to me are the interactive, collaborative storytelling, and how the distinctions between fact & fiction, virtual & real dissolve as the participants/characters perform actions.)