Monday, November 27, 2006

Chiho Aoshima - All Stitched Up!

A few weeks back I posted some pictures from Aoshima's piece at Gloucester Road station. I did get back to it and managed to take enough pictures to produce a stitched image. It was too big to host on this site but I did manage to get it on another site I use.

Check this out

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Jackass Number 2

Its been a long time coming but boy has it been worth the wait. Messrs Knoxville, Margera and co. are back for another 90 minutes of ridiculous stunts and dares. I've been a big fan of these guys since the days of CKY, and I thought the first movie was great. This is more of the same but that's not necessarily a bad thing. If it aint broke it don't fix it.

The best stunts involve three of them testing a land mine security system, Preston and Wee Man's double bungee jump and a couple of booby traps involving boxing gloves and airbags. The first film had a great opening sequence featuring the guys in a giant shopping trolley. They top this one with a running of the bulls in an urban setting. Bulls seem to feature quite a lot of this movie and I can only guess the horns had been blunted as the guys are gored on a couple of occasions but seem to be unscathed.

The preview featured a routine with Don Vito getting his teeth pulled out by a motorbike pulling a rope, but this was missing from the film. Apparently since the scene was shot Don has been charged with doing the wrong kind of physical stunt with a couple of underage girls and Paramount cut it from the movie as a result. However the DVD should contain the scene, which I have ordered from the states as it has been released there.

I didn't think Borat could be topped for making me laugh this year, but this film managed it.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Saturday, November 18, 2006

A Nightmare Before Christmas 3D


This was one Tim Burton film I'd managed to miss when it first came out about a decade ago so it was a nice surprise to see it re-released in the 3D format and on a digital projector. As the film wasn't designed to be shot in 3D you don't get the over the top in your face effects the genre usually relies upon. Instead the effects seem to focus on moving the background back, which makes for a more visual effect, especially for a film that runs for about 90 minutes. Too much "in your face" stuff and I think you'd end up with a headache.

The story is alright, Jack O'Lantern suffers a bout of depression and decides to celebrate Christmas to cheer himself up. The best bits are when the kids get open the scary presents. Burton collaborater Danny Elfman seems to have more of the reins in this however, being responsible for all the songs, lyrics and as well as providing the voice of the lead.

Overall, not too bad and the better of the two 3D films I've seen this year (Superman being the other). Still a long way to go before beating the 4D show that Disney have at their California park.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Prestige


Christopher "Memento" Nolan's latest film pitches Batman against Wolverine, not in a comic book fight style, but as a couple of competitive magicians. Hugh Jackman plays the obsessive magician seeking to work out Christian Bale performs a "transporting man" illusion. There's also some rivalry after Christian inadvertently kills Hugh's wife in a stage trick gone wrong.

Its hard to write a review without giving much away as there is a twist and plenty of clues leading you to it, in fact the first words of the film are "are you watching carefully" and the first shot gives some of it away. If you're a fan of magic then you will have figured the twist out before its revealed but there's still plenty of reason to enjoy the film.

I really enjoyed the film, even though I'd realised where it was going. The acting is solid enough although some of the cast aren't pushed too hard. Bale has to act with 8 fingers and Jackman pulls off the "walking with a limp" look pretty well. Scarlet Johansen plays the Magician's assistant and is no more talented in that than Debbie McGee.

Definitely worth seeing.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Carshalton Firework Display

Just some shots from my local fireworks show, when parents weren't walking in front of the camera with kids on their shoulders, that is.












and here's the bonfire. 20 tonnes of wood apparently!








A nice way to celebrate the first anniversary of V for Vendetta!

Bourne Ultimatum @ Waterloo

Over the last few days Waterloo station has been used as a location for the third Bourne movie (Bourne Redemption & Bourne Supremacy being the other two). Matt Damon wasn't around when I got there, I think all the primary shooting had taken place in the days prior. Today they were just filming background scenes, with a road closed off for traffic shots consisting of a couple of borrowed double decker buses and a bunch of cars, all driven by stunt drivers. I could tell this by the way they reversed their vehicles back up the road when a second take was needed.


Here's a mistake, the 43 bus runs from Friern Barnet to London Bridge, it doesn't go anywhere near Waterloo. There were two camera crews in place, one on the bridge and the other to the right under it.

This is the street level camera, the guy in the brown coat is the director. I'm not sure if its Paul Greengrass, or some second unit director. Probably the latter because they were just filming extras.

After I took this shot I got told off for taking pictures of the set. I thought the guy was just selling papers, then I realised that doesn't happen on weekends and he was an actor. I thought I'd hang around and watch what was going on. It took a long time to get the shot and although there were extras in abundance they didn't seem too bothered that normal people were getting into shot, unless they were all extras and I hadn't realised. In fact I think I managed to get into shot as the camera panned around past where I was standing (actually leaning against a phone box). It'll be fun to see if I make it in, just ending up on the cutting room floor would be fun.

Pig Dyke Molly

Pig Dyke Molly as well as sounding like an insult to some girl are also a Fen Dancing troop who were entertaining and confusing people around the South Bank today. They look like a mixture of a Kiss tribute band and group of country dancers.

Here's two of them doing an impromptu performance using a susaphone and a pair of spoons as percussion.
This is a bit of their main performance indoors. It just looked like an uncoordinated mess of black and white. All quite bizarre.

Trading Places @ South Bank

Trading Places is a small external installation on the South Bank. It consists of hundreds of photos posted into a mosaic. Get close to the photos and a recording will play from the person in the picture who will talk about their life.

People seemed intrigued by the installation but not exactly blown away.

Still it did look impressive all the same.

Jamie Hewlett @ South Bank

Jamie Hewlett is one half of the creators of The Gorillaz. This year he won the Designer of the Year and to commemorate that the South Bank have put up a number of murals with his artwork on them and I thought I'd get pictures of them today.





















Environmental Rally @ Trafalgar Square

Stumbled upon this by accident, I was heading down to the South Bank but was aware of a crowd making their way in my direction. As I got to Trafalgar Square the rally was in full swing with people on the stage pontificating and groups of people wearing lots of badges banging drums.

Mr President Bush seemed to be the main target of hate for this particular campaign because he won't do anything about emissions from his country. There were certainly more placards with his face on them than anyone else.

It seemed ironic that a square that commemorates and celebrates victories of the war kind would be the site for a battle that I think the people campaigning are going to lose.

According to estimates there were around 25,000 people there today. I wonder if they count people like myself who were just attempting to pass through from one side of the square to the other. Now I know how it feels to be a commuter caught up in a flashmob!

It also struck me that for a rally that was all about not damaging the environment a lot of wood and paper had been used to make the banners.