once she starts writing letters to the chickens
den, you brightened my day :) i need to see if my library has this.
Roberto Bolano – Nazi Literature Of The Americas: Good
A clever book including a lot of short biographies of made up Nazi writers. There’s a surprise change of form in the last biography that casts a different light on the rest of the book. Also, there is a lot of interesting meta-information in the book. For instance, the author betrays which writers he’s most interested in by the length of the chapters, and betrays the way he ignores their despicable points of view because he loves their literature.
Branch Rickey by Jimmy Breslin.
The great Breslin says early on that most historians should not be put into a jail but put under it
He does this good ones proud in this short addictive tome. It spends a bit too much time on Jack Robinson’s pre-Rickey life but it is a fun read.
don’t know how many poetry fans are on this thread, but this is one of the best books of recent poetry i’ve ever read. just revisited it earlier today. Spectacular! Little Oceans by Tony Hoagland
Black Angel – written by Cornell Woolrich
5/5, 10/10, masterpiece, etc.
I just bought a fantastic book (I am almost too excited to read it)
Michael (dir. Markus Schleinzer) 2011
Brilliant film. Impossible to talk about this film and not mention Haneke. It’s a credit to the director that he makes us feel both sympathy and disgust for our protagonist; that we’re both with him and against him. No, sympathy might not be the right word. But we’re with him, he is not a cartoon, he is not a caricature, he is a real person.
Not sure why the reviews out of Cannes were so mixed. I think this film should’ve been a contender for the Palm d’Or.
So far I’ve seen three films at AFI Fest 2011 and this one has been the best.
You do know you’re in the wrong room, right?
The Garner book is very good, candid in the best ways. He does not always devote time to things I would have liked to hear about since he has a low opinion of some of my favorite films of his and a high opinion of some of the ones I could take or leave. I think the Rockford, Maverick and Testimonial chapters are best.
Why are we talking about books!? This is a movie site!
i think it’s somewhat relevant…many many many many many many many many films are based from books
We should probably be talking about books in OT . . . and, of course, there’s already this long-standing book thread there.
I would like books if it wasn’t for all the words.
…i’ve thought this was in OT the whole time. hahahah oops.
weren’t for all the works, Santino. hahahahahaha
I really like the setting of this book. And, I don’t mind explicit sex stuff. But, when half the book obsesses over it, my eyes start to glaze over.
Just finished Elmore Leonard’s Swag. The dialogue in his books is the best. Everything but the dialogue in Leonard’s writing is underplayed. The dialogue is very real feeling, very interesting and it almost pushes the plot forward without the narration interrupting. When there is narration it’s nice and subtle. His books covert well into movies because of this. 5/5
Answered Prayers, Truman Capote 5/5
he is awfully stilted when not talking about movies
Speaking of films based on books…
The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James: 9/10
Beautifully written. James was so ahead of his time.
The Portrait of a Lady, directed by Jane Campion: 8/10
Finely acted and directed. Very faithful to the book in many parts but I liked where Campion deviated.
Don Delillo – Libra: Good
A fictional account of the events leading up to the assassination of JFK. It’s good because Delillo just has amazing writing style, but the story is a little too clever for its own good. So many of the same themes are expressed so much better in Underworld.
Lord of the Flies-William Golding (2nd time I read it)
not quite finished but so far one of the funniest and most suprising Hollywood autobiographies I have read:
Straw Dogs: Thoughts On Humans and Other Animals by John Gray 3/5The Assassination Bureau, Ltd. by Jack London and Robert L. Fish 3/5How To Live: Or a Life of Montaigne In One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer by Sarah Blakewell 5/5
Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. 4/5.
THE WAY OF MEN:
re-read. Donovan is a gay male writer who takes a specific interest in issues that affect men. The thesis of this book, which draws heavily on theories of evoutionary psychology, is that men derive meaning in the world through competing with other men in very specific ways, and that their ability to compete and form meaningful gang like assocations with other men—‘the way of men is the way of the gang’—is being weakened by atomisation, emasculation(via feminism), neo-liberalism, technology, increased bureaucratisation and an over emphasis on greed and economic competition. He draws an interesting distinction between what it means to be a ‘good man’(morality, civility etc), and what it means to be ‘good at being a man’, which is more of an amoral space where men have to do what needs to be done in order to survive. He argues, quite convincingly, that ‘intellectual men’ tend to be concerned with the former, without generally acknowledging that the only reason they are able to pursue the ‘idea life’ is because stronger, more courageous men have largely created the conditions for civilization to emerge, often through a combination of brute force and bloodshed. In addition, he also believes that intellectual men, while often looking down on thugs and physically dominant men, are still engaging in a form of primal masculine competition via debate etc, and tend to do so with other men. The problem with intellectual competition, however, according to Donovan, is that it’s an area in life where women are able to compete too, which for him means it’s ultimately less satisfying for men. He gives no solid reasons for why men derive close to zero satisfaction by competing with women. He just treats it as a given.
This is kind of where the arguments tend to break down for me. He often fails to develop the points he is making, and there are too many ‘just so’ like arguments that would be especially unconvincing to outsiders who would likely approach his book with extreme skepticism from the outset.
I agree with Donovan that men do thrive on conflict and competition in a quasi-Nietzschean sense—i.e significance and meaning occuring through perpetual struggle on the path to self actualisation—and that men need their own spaces to bond and sort out their issues, but i don’t understand why he sees no valuable room for women in this worldview outside of sex and reproduction. Like most feminists, Donovan tends to downplay the very real affect that women have on male psychological growth and development. My impression is that he tends to dismiss it as a by-product of the emasculation agenda, and the increased atomisation of men in a modern capitalist society. In other words, women only have the ability to really influence men in a society where codes of masculinity aren’t really worth a shit, otherwise their influence would be minimal.
Despite not agreeing with at least half of the things said in the book, i think Donovan makes a valiant attempt to start a new type of conversation about the status of masculinity in modern society that draws upon a number of different and relevant sources(Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Philosophy, Biology, popular culture etc etc), but there are moments where the book comes dangerously close to a male version of lesbian separatism, which is something i can’t really get on with. He also doesn’t seem too concerned with the problem of ‘othering’ that often occurs due to intergroup rivalry. I could be wrong, but he just claims that this is the result of the male need to ‘establish parameters and boundaries’, and that an us and them ideology is the inevitable outcome of drawing the line. While he does make a convincing case for the need to often draw the line—in both a tactical and practical survival related sense—his vision of a world based on gangs and crews—not necessarily thugs—seems vague at best, at least in terms of actual benefits for civilization, and unrealistic and dangerous at worst.
6/10. and that’s mostly for gall and an entertaining writing style.