The Null Device
I saw three films today. First up was an amusing English short titled Knit Your Own Karma. This would best be described as Wallace & Gromit meet Brazil, or perhaps something by Jeunet and Caro. It's set in a world of English terrace houses that will be familiar to Aardman fans, only with a slightly dystopian twist, and a good dose of fantasy. Then was an amusing German comedy titled Mein Bruder Der Vampir (aka "Getting My Brother Laid"), about a 30-year-old retarded man who falls in love with his brother's girlfriend (despite being completely inept in that area of human relations), and his 14-year-old sister who develops a crush on a gang leader. As you can imagine, lots of awkwardness ensues. The feel of this film was modern and slick, with sharp editing (and good use of split-screens and camera tracking through walls) and an electronic soundtrack.
After that I saw Peter Weir's 1974 classic The Cars That Ate Paris. For those who haven't seen it, it's about a young man who has a car accident and ends up in a NSW country town where everything seems to be connected to car accidents. The town has that sort of picturesquely rustic look of small Australian country towns, yet with a sense of being a little too isolated. Before long, it emerges that there's something oppressive and creepy going on (insert the usual clichés about the miasma of horror and decay lurking beneath the placid surface here). Bizarre medical experiments, gangs of young rural hooligans in gaudily painted cars and a somewhat creepy mayor all appear, as does a classic country-town ball scene, with some genuinely bad musical accompaniment. All in all, The Cars That Ate Paris is a classic, and should be classed alongside the works of Cronenberg and Lynch and perhaps Peter Jackson's early works.
Anyway, got to rush off now to see 24 Hour Party People.
Is insanity a virus from outer space? A US psychiatrist/author has posited the controversial theory that an unknown virus or parasite could be responsible for the fivefold increase in mental illness over the past 200 years. (via Psychoceramics)