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Showing posts from October, 2006

Saw 3

Well its Halloween soon, which for Cinema fans means that their local cinema might actually show an 18 rated film, something that hardly happens anymore. With Saw being the only horror franchise left (Scary Movie doesn't count) it was time to go and see this and as fan of the first two I was looking forward to this.

Following on from the last one we see Jigsaw on his death bed being looked after by the girl he'd groomed. A nurse is kidnapped and made to look after him whilst he runs one last game on a guy seeking revenge on the man who ran over his son, who has also been kidnapped and left to run through a series of challenges where he has the opportunity to spare the lives of people involved in letting his son's killer go free. It sounds complex but its not really and with a small cast its easy to follow.

What made this franchise exciting is the elaborate and sick games that Jigsaw plays, and this film is no exception. The film makers are keen to hear ideas from fans and h…

Chiho Aoshima City Glow Mountain Whisper @ Gloucester Road Station

Gloucester Road station on the Circle Line has been home to a number of temporary exhibitions by various artists. Here's a few shots of the current display by Japanese artist Chiho Aoshima. I loved this stuff, I would love it even more if I could get to take pictures of all the pieces without trains coming through every minute and blocking my view!

I will be going back here, I want to build a panoramic shot of all the pieces, but I'll do it when the line is a bit quieter.

Fairground Thrill Laboratory

Something a little different tonight, the Science Museum in London is doing a little series of events to look at thrill rides and emotions related to them. Friends who know of my interest in amusement parks pointed this out to me in the daily paper, and as I was able to get a ticket I thought I'd go along to see what it was about.

This is the venue, around the corner from the Science Museum and the majestic looking Natural History Museum.

This was a sick bag handed to us on the way in. It doubled up as a disclaimer that we had to sign to say that we were happy to have our ugly mugs used in publicity resulting from any filming made on the night. It also included a medical questionnaire.

This is the room, much smaller and intimate than I'd expected. The room was also not full of enthusiasts, but people interested in the science of rides, or friends and relatives of the event organisers and guest speakers. The women in the white suits are looking scientist-like and carried out surve…

Carston Holler @ The Tate Modern

The Tate Modern houses a lot of rubbish, but with the Turbine Hall they have a ridiculously sized room in which to house monster installations. In the past these have included "The Weather Project" which had a huge sun at one end of the room. The most recent is a collection of slides designed by Carston Holler.

My first attempt to get on this was a week ago after work, and this was as far as I got. I hadn't realised the place closed at 6pm. Fortunately I was here at midday so had plenty of time to have my fun.

These are slides 5, 3 and 1. Superb looking structures don't you think? The top level is 55 metres high, and people were shooting out of it at a good speed. When I first saw this on the telly the people were flying off the end of the slide onto the rubber floor. The gallery had since added crashmats to help slow the people down.

Here's my arty shot of 5 and 3. You can just make out that the slide's top half is clear.

This is a shot from the other side of th…

Even More Banksys

When I did my Big Banksy Walk I didn't find all of his pieces that I was looking for. Rather coincidentally I stumbled across two that I'd missed this weekend.

This one was a kid with a balloon, similar to the one I found in Hackney. It's on the South Bank just under Blackfriar's Bridge. I had missed this because on the other side of this pillar is a stencilled scene of gravestones, that I though was the Banksy, it hadn't occured to me to check the other side.

This one was the last one I looked for originally but by the time I got to the area, in the subways under Marble Arch, it was dark and there was no way I would have found it. In fact if it hadn't have been for two guys taking pictures of it I'd have missed it on this occasion too. It was nice to know that I'm not the only one who goes looking for this stuff and I gave them the link to this site so they could have access to the map, which they didn't have.

Alien Algae

Another weekend with nothing planned so I thought I'd go to look for some alien algae that had been seen in Central London.

This is the Serpentine, the largest lake in London. It's here that the algae had been sighted, and just my luck its right up the other end of the lake.

Along the way I passed the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain. It's crap! Its a little stream that you can't paddle in because you're likely to slip and crack your head open. A real travesty of red tape and bureaucracy, but even with all that people were gathered around it.

This is the Algae, its actually an art installation by Tony Heywood. Its supposed to be a statement on how algae develops mutant strains to battle environmental conditions but the philistine in me reckons its just a pile of shiny floating things.

This is much cooler, its part of the Serpentine Gallery nearby. I wouldn't want to be sipping on tea and eating carrot cake inside it when they over inflate it!

New Police Story

Clearly restrained by Hollywood Jackie Chan returns home to make the kind of film, true fans know him for. Whilst it has "Police Story" in its name, it has nothing to do with the rest of the series, which are amongst my favourite of his. It does however feature crazy stunts and some pretty ropey acting, especially Jackie being drunk, truly bad!

But the action and the stunts are top notch and Jackie although over 50 can still put on a great show when he's allowed to. There is admittedly a lot of wire work, a touch of CGI and his young partner gets into more scrapes than he does, but his performance is still a lot better than in both Shanghai movies.

The plot isn't too bad, with Jackie's swat team taken out by a gang of rich kid bank robbers with a penchant for video games. In fact the way they're killed off in front of Jackie is pretty grim for a Hong Kong film. Not taking this too well, Jackie becomes an alcoholic and it takes the motivation of a young cop to p…

Silent Disco

The Flashmob craze took off a few years ago but having joined a list a while back, I thought it had died a death. So it was a nice surprise to be invited to a Silent Disco Event that took place tonight.

The plan was quite simple, turn up at Liverpool Street Station at 19.15, armed with your ipod, then when the clock hit 19.24 start dancing to it.

This is Liverpool Street Station normally.

This is it when the mob showed up. Just a little busier than before and far bigger than any flashmob I'd been to before.

Then the party started.

Whilst the crowd danced, those of a more voyeuristic or less brave nature watched from the floor above.

The vibe was definitely a happy one, even those caught in the middle of it were smiling.

There were good dancers and bad dancers, dancing in various styles.

The funniest part of this was seeing non-participants trying to get home without blowing a fuse.

Plenty of floor space for those air guitar solos.

Showoff! There's always one.

Here are some videos I took.…

More Banksys

When I did my stupid walk a few weekends back I was working off maps that showed the locations. In printing them out I realised I'd missed a bit of London not far from work. So being the autistic fool I am, and with a bit of time to kill I thought I'd go and see if I could find these ones after work.

This one is near the top of Hatton Garden and ironically just around the corner from where I often have lunch.

This one is in Mount Pleasant, cheers to Huckle for pointing out that I'd missed it.

There's supposed to be a rat here but I couldn't find it. Is this the remains of it?

TV in Japan

This is a site I've been visiting for some time now and am really liking. It'll provide me with enough of a Japan fix until 2009 when I'm hoping to go out there again.

It's also a great introduction to Pythagoras Switch, a show that is quite popular out there, and which should be shown worldwide.

TV in Japan

UK B-Boy Championships 2006

October sees my annual pilgrimage to Brixton Academy for a weekend of hip hop perfection with superb scratch djs, beatboxing, locking, popping and breakdancing. I've not missed a year yet and had been looking forward to this for some time.

Day 1 was the popping battle and solo breakdancers. The popping was won by an American guy called J-Smooth, who beat Salah from France. This didn't go down well with the crowd at all well. Two years ago Salah was screwed by someone else and he suffered a repeat here. I don't know what the Judges were scoring on, but it clearly wasn't crowd response. Salah is an amazing dancer and wins the crowd over every time he hits the stage.

In the solo battles the final should have been Mouse from the UK vs Reveal from the States but due to sickness Reveal no showed the final and Juse Boogy stepped up having been knocked out in the semi. It was a disappointing final, I guess because Juse didn't feel that he'd made it to the final properly,…