Monday, July 5th, 2004
Can't Wash It Off
Dirty Pretty Things is the latest film from director Stephen Frears, and is a return to the darker, grittier tine he’s known for after making the music geek comedy High Fidelity (though you could argue that record store owners belong just as much to the underbelly of society as anyone else). This time, he’s telling the story of illegal aliens working under the radar in west end London. A quick synopsis – Okwe is a Nigerian exile working as a cab driver in the day and a hotel clerk at night, while Senay is a Turkish maid at the same hotel being targeted by immigration and a chance discovery in the hotel one night embroils them in an organ smuggling ring. Got it? Good. The film is a pretty low-key but tense thriller, being more about the characters and how they handle the situations they find themselves in rather than the situations themselves, if that makes any sense. It succeeds mainly on very strong performances by Chiwetel Ejiofor and Audrey Tautou, though the supporting cast is excellent as well. It’s a good watch and raises some interesting moral questions for both the characters and the viewer. Recommended.
Aging Welsh agit-rockers The Manic Street Preachers will release their seventh album Life Blood on October 4th in the UK. It was produced by longtime Bowie producer Tony Visconti. More info here. I used to be quite into the Manics but lost interest of late, but it’s a slow day so this qualifies as news.
It’s funny – for weeks now I’ve been complaining about the ever-growing backlog of reading material that sits on my coffee table, waiting to be gotten to. Books, magazines, comics, the daily newspaper, it just kept coming and I barely had the time to keep it from overflowing, let alone work the pile down. Well thanks to this four-day weekend, I have almost eliminated the pile – just in time for me to realize that I am going to need a good supply of reading material for my trip, as I’ll be spending a fair amount of time on planes, trains and ferries. So I have had to stop the reading so as to at least keep enough stuff on hand to get me through the flight out there. Which means I now have nothing to read…
np – Built To Spill / Ancient Melodies Of The Future