11/11/22 A modern film is like a short-lived whale, crying its arrival from a distance. There are so many hungry small fish now, that its greatest service to most is to die, and have its carcass torn apart to invigorate the species TikTok and podcast and YouTube and meme-macro and Spotify. To witness the great beast in its majesty is the lesser thing.

November 17, 2022

Trust is like a muscle. It must be used and tested to grow in its potential.

If those gambles of trust aren’t made, it’s fear that grows.

April 30, 2022

20220430 Watched Kimi (2022, Soderbergh) Very good. Form: Loved the high angle shots and handheld styling for the agoraphobic sequences. Nice natural light work, esp. for the home sequences. Very curious how lightly it was crewed. Silence for headphones on” well evoked the ear-suck of ANC tech. Relaly nice tempo, great editing. Content: HR rep being referred to as Organics” and purely looking out for the company was really nice. The most W. Gibsonian film I’ve seen yet. Could’ve elaborated and exaggerated domestic luxuries favored by Angela, a kind of power-WFH comfort otaku with some very sensory textural stuff going on. Nice use of teal and orange and fabrics as it is. Nice Massive Attack use. Kinda wish there was explicitly reverse phase of the song and tweaking through room reverb modelling and modelling the Kimi mic. Other: watched Ocean’s Eleven last night and this feels like Soderbergh in similar form.

April 30, 2022

The value of an effort (a project, event, action) is currently determined by its ability to justify the production of images, and the quality of those images (in content and form).

April 26, 2022


I like the idea that we’re all captivated by both the experience and the spectacle of grace. That grace being: when someone pursues their desires in such perfect harmony with their environment that obstacles are avoided or overcome without any apparent exertion. THeir actions are like a dance in perfect tune and rythmn with the cosmos, with fate.

In balletic action films - a la The Matrix, Equilibrium, John Wick, Crouching Tiger, - the subject is wants to kill and destroy, or is desiring to move through a space filled with opposing agents and obstacles who are, most simply for them, obliterated. I cannot think of a film of this type which is not successful, though that could easily be confirmation bias.

There is something of this in (Rube Goldbergy) musicals (if the first 10 minutes of In The Heights that I watched on the plane are anything to go by), although they have a fairy fixed and obvious tempo which distracts from the hidden internal grace which we yearn for.

The pandemic time loop fascination has lead to a core trope of the genre - at a certain point in their looping, the looped person achieves perfect grace with their environment, this time because they have learned it perfectly. We see this in Groundhog Day, Palm Springs and Russian Doll. Video games often repeatably programmed environments, particularly immersion sims like Thief and Dishonored, though I’d highlight also FromSoft games - which can induce in the player a similar experience (with reduced complexity and option for interaction)

There are other examples which use fate by another name - luck - to drive this harmony. Harry Potter and his luck potion in The Half Blood Prince is the high point of that text. More recent and spectacular, though, is amazing Zazzie Beats as Domino walking scene. On a similar note, the much beloved Quicksilver scenes of the recent X-Men films.

I have a great desire for a spectacle of this type where the desire is the opposite of ambivalent desctruction. I want a grace of love and courage. Does this have a place in modern cinema? Would this figure seem undesirably messianic if witnessed at length? Would there need to breaks in their action? A budget for their elegance? Or perhaps a reluctance to live that way because they desire resistance and struggle? I could not relate to the latter as much as the former, though I find the idea fascinating, and has a certain resonance with the pan-spiritual notion of the human as an omnipotent being choosing a limited perspective to enable it to experience time and change and so on as a product of that finitude.

In this perfect harmony, one acts as if divine: with perfect efficiency, total effect and beauty of movement. It is a power fantasy.

I think MLKs quote about the relationship between power and love goes along way to explaining my desire for this state of grace in compassionate action. The action films intially referenced above mostly position their narratives within altruistic terms, and sometimes outright loving. It is a good sign, that we would not enjoy these films as much (I don’t think) if they were nihilistic or cruel.

It’s probably a sign of the limits in which we desire that one of my first thoughts on this was I want more movies like this” when this desire comes from the lived experience and profound happiness that comes from experiencing this, especially for en extended period of time. It’s something I will continue to seek in my own living, rather than settling for as spectacle, though I love a good spectacle, as much as I can.

March 30, 2022

Best In Class Visual Narratives (occasionally updated)

Maniac (2018)

Cowboy Bebop (1998-1999)



Blade Runner

Blade Runner 2049



Ex Machina

Dune (2021)

The Batman (2022)

Winter’s Bone


November 8, 2021