Saw Guest of Cindy Sherman at MIFF. It's a documentary about the New York art scene from the perspective of Paul H-O, who in the 1990s hosted the public access TV show GalleryBeat. The film traces how he then became the boyfriend of photographer Cindy Sherman, and his growing (somewhat churlish but not mean-spirited) discomfort at being a nobody attached to a huge art star. I felt a little uncomfortable at finding myself implicated, through watching it, in the furthering of a kind of opportunistic self-aggrandisement based on reflected glory. But it's kinda interesting, too.
Tuesday 28 July
Stayed at 3CR all day after the Breakfast Show to help out on reception/scrounge around for content for the Stick Together show. Then went to see Outrage and The Girlfriend Experience at MIFF.
Outrage is a documentary about closeted gay Republican politicians (who the film outs) and the damage they do to gay citizens because their closetedness and fear of discovery within a political party/base that clearly despises their true selves causes them to legislate in very anti-gay ways. You just feel bad all over. Anyway, on the upside, Washington DC is hella gay. On the downside, why are so many Republicans? The Girlfriend Experience is Steven Soderbergh's global financial crisis film, in which the brunt of the crash is borne by New York escort Chelsea in that she has to listen to all the rich guys freak out and whine.
After the film, went back to 3CR overnight to edit/produce that week's Stick Together, which I made using other people's interviews and a very elastic interpretation of the show's 'workplace and social justice issues' brief. I mean, the people in it have jobs...
Media from the Margins. We take a look at what media skills training can mean for prisoners in Britain, and the situation for women working as journalists in Iran, with Phil Maguire from the UK Prison Radio Association and Kathleen Currie from the International Women's Media Foundation.The podcast sounds like this.
Wednesday 29 July
Saw Fish Tank at MIFF. I wanted to see it after reading about it earlier this year in this Observer article by Jason Solomons. And having seen it, I can't really add more to what Jason Solomons said, except that I agree. So, thanks for pointing me in its direction, sir.
Thursday 30 July
Saw United Red Army at MIFF. It began at 11am, and it still wasn't over by the time I had to leave at 2pm, as I had somewhere to be by 2.30pm. In short, it was THE WORST FILM EVER. It was even worse than that description can possibly convey. DEAR GOD. Avoid.
Raced to 3CR so that I would not be late to meet with Bea Viegas, who plays Juliana in the Balibo film, for our interview.
Friday 31 July
Worked at CASA House, then went to see The Exploding Girl at MIFF. It's about gentle people who dress well and spend their uni break at home in Brooklyn just, you know, hanging out. What's not to like?
Saturday 1 August
Saw A Lake at MIFF. My brother was with me and asked me beforehand what it was about. I recalled a vague sense that there would be snow, a young man, and like, atmosphere. A few minutes into the film I had to lean over to him to say, "Oh yeah, and he's painfully in love with his sister." A lot of people walked out of this film, and I really don't understand why. I liked all the blurriness and tension. I spent the film repeating "Be cool, Alexi" over and over, and held myself tensed because the woodchopping sounded so violent and I didn't want any axes to connect with people. I experienced a powerful sense of release when my fears of violence came to nothing.
Sunday 2 August
Started reading Perdido Street Station by China Miéville. It is a book of many treats, vocabulary-wise, but also, for instance, this explanation of Garuda social organisation:
The point is that you are an individual inasmuch as you exist in a social matrix of others who respect your individuality and your right to make choices. That's concrete individuality: an individuality that recognises that it owes its existence to a kind of communal respect on the part of all the other individualities, and that it had better therefore respect them similarly.My favourite treat so far, though, has been this:
'...and then there were two,' sang Derkhan, a snatch of a children's counting song about a basket of kittens that died, one by one, grotesquely.Oooh, I LIKE.
Monday 3 August
Saw Katalin Varga at MIFF. It was, I dunno, fine I guess. Except for that whole 'in summary, ladies, the consequences of going on a rape vengeance quest are a) forgiving the perpetrator and b) being violently murdered' thing.
Then went to 3CR to edit the Bea Viegas interview for tomorrow's Breakfast Show. Then home.