Archive for December, 2007


Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

It arrived only a few hours after I posted the last entry – time to celebrate!

I’m so excited!

Tuesday, December 18th, 2007

… and I just can’t hide it. I know, I know, I know, you’ll be here!
I just got the news that my book has arrived in Darmstadt. Now I have to go up to the post office here in Oslo every other hour to check if it has arrived here, too!

Listen closely.

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

Well, this is really and definitely troubling: BBC reports on a new forecast under the headline Arctic summers ice-free ‘by 2013’. So, I guess our so very responsible and wise policy makers should meet with their lobby friends, fly around a bit, talk some more, agree to talk some more next year and so on. Since it always was a good idea to do it like that, we should probably continue. We are part of the most powerful economic system, our scientists are the best, stock markets have gained grounds again, all is good. We conquer earth and space, and then we sell them. And slowly, but not as slowly as we hope, the ground we built upon gets brittle. A crack in the wall here, some strange noises in the cellar there. Just monsters, imagined, children’s fears.

Nuovomondo – let the sound tell the story.

Tuesday, December 11th, 2007

Two weeks ago, I have been to my now-favorite cinema in Oslo: the Gimle Kino. Located in a very fine art deco building, it only has a single show room, an old school wood paneled and heavily carpeted entrance area where you cannot get popcorn – high-quality beverages and the usual choice of chocolates is being served instead. Very much adequate to the refined setting was the movie we saw: Nuovomondo or The Golden Door. A movie about an utterly poor rural Italian family who finally decides to leave their barren homestead to try their luck in the US of A. When I write barren here, I do actually mean barren. If you do not have a clear understanding of what constitutes a barren landscape (in contrast to a desert, for example) you have to see this movie, and the meaning of this word will much more than dawn on you. It might well overwhelm you.
One thing that took a while until it dawned on me during that evening was the sound of this movie. I think I have never seen a movie where sounds were able to tell so much about the emotions and the materiality of the setting as this one (with the exception of Das Boot, though with submarine flicks sound is an obvious thing to invest in). The landscape, the vessel that ships the migrants from Italy to America, the life below decks – all of these places become really vivid in this movie.
However, this is not where my praise stops. In addition to the sound and the thing about the barrenness – two features which would make this movie outstanding on its own – this work of Emanuele Crialese also offers many openly dreamlike aesthetic images, images that weave themselves into the fabric of the story that is being told. All want to swim in the land of milk and honey, as you will see. So, the story seems fine, the imageary is fantastic, and the sounds scaringly good. Then what about the cast? Do they spoil the thing? No! They don’t! They are actually perfectly fitting, too. I guess you get my drift: I do urge you to go and watch this movie. In a cinema, please, try to watch it in a real movie theater.
IMDb entry | Trailer

Michael Clayton – kind of a thriller.

Saturday, December 8th, 2007

The genre given for this film at the Internet Movie Database is Drama / Thriller, at Apple’s website it is just Drama. I guess I was expecting a thriller when I went to watch this movie – but in that regard it did not really live up to my expectations. However, the drama part was actually working out good – something that is at least as much thanks to Tilda Swinton as to our omnipresent smart and good-looking main actor, Dr. Ace. The cast and the plot were good, and I actually liked the small touch of another, hitherto unmentioned genre, which played into the movie now and then: mystery! All in all, this is solid entertainment that encourages the audience to take a closer look (some of those with whom I saw the movie overlooked several important clues regarding the mystery – so enjoy keeping your eyes peeled!)

IMDb entry | Trailer


Friday, December 7th, 2007

Does that look like the past to you? In the year 1999. To me it did, and I was surprised when I typed this in today and was confronted with the past-like feeling of this number…