August 31, 2011

Films (August) / Películas (agosto)

I suspect this might be a slightly shorter list than usual, but anyway, here I bring you August films (in no particular order). The gem of the month is Lost in Translation (2003) directed by Sofia Coppola. I had already seen it when it was originally released, but now I consider it as equally, if not more, powerful than before. Many critics must have explored the lack of communication as a fundamental key in “Lost in Translation” but there is so much more going on, so for a more in depth analysis please check my review on IMDB (and don’t forget to vote for it): http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0335266/reviews-1916

Now everything else has been new this month. Let’s start with a super production like Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), what can I say? I didn’t expect much from a character than only a handful of comic book writers know how to handle, and yet the movie appropriately portrays some of the fundamental aspects of the hero created by Joe Simon & Jack Kirby. I particularly loved the after credit advertisement of the upcoming Avengers film, as a comic book fan it’s still hard for me to believe that the Avengers is a reality and it sure looks a very promising one. Another popular flick was Super 8 (2011), a Spielberg-like sci-fi adventure that explores the camaraderie of a group of kids, their feelings, their innocence, their dreams and how they face an unknown threat that’s befallen in their town. I have to admit that I enjoyed it more than I thought I would; and the zombies movie that the kids are filming is one of the most delightful details in JJ Abrams’ newest production.

As I can’t live a month without horror and / or suspense, I saw Resident Evil: After Life (2010). The first Resident Evil movie is great; however the sequels (including this one) have taken a nosedive in quality. I also saw Dr. Phibes Rises Again (1972), here Vincent Price returns to his popular character, a doctor obsessed with the search of immortality; there are lots of spectacular deaths and some very bizarre and discombobulating moments, now I can’t wait to see the first movie. Based on a Clive Barker’s original idea The Midnight Meat Train (2008) draws from the slasher films and the vicious butchering of victims; but there is also a supernatural horror that remains hidden. For lovers of blood and violence, this is a must. Clint Eastwood’s Play Misty for Me (1971) is what we might now refer as a thriller with plenty of suspense and unexpected twists, here a psychopathic woman gets obsessed with a young Clint Eastwood, and after a one night stand, the obsession simply gets out of control, it sure reminded me of Misery, although here the woman is also a sexual partner, which of course can only end badly.

Clint Eastwood and Martin Sheen are the protagonists of The Rookie (1990), a fast-paced story about two cops that have to bring down a dangerous gang of car smugglers. I would also include Jonah Hex (2010) in the ‘action’ category, based on a DC Comics character, this movie simply fails on so many levels, which is sad because there are great actors in it.

Based on a book, Birdy (1984) is the chronicle of a friendship and the aftermath of the Vietnam War; when two young boys become friends, a very special relationship begins, one of them is a bird lover, and eventually gets so obsessed about birds that he isolates himself from the world. But then as they go to war and experience traumatic moments, everything changes. ‘Birdy’, the bird lover, loses his mind, and his friend returns to him to try to get him to talk again. There are some moments that honor the author’s intentions (like Matthew Modine’s naked scenes and his wet dream), but the subtle homoerotic subtext makes more sense in the novel. North by Northwest (1959), starring Cary Grant, proves once again why Alfred Hitchcock is a master of the 7th art. When a successful advertising professional is confused with a certain Mr. Kaplan, problems start. Some people want him dead and nobody believes he is not Mr. Kaplan. Hitchcock captures our attention since the opening frames and keeps surprising us with intrigue, espionage and plot twists as the story unfolds. Another classic would be Mark of the Vampire (1935), by Todd Browning, a very curious take on vampires, folklore and superstitions; when a noble man is murdered, everyone suspects about Count Mora, a sinister figure that lives in an abandoned castle, but once a vampires expert enters into scene, things may not be as they appear. 

And unlike most months, this time there are a few romantic titles: Love and Other Impossible Pursuits (2009), based on a novel, is an interesting story about a girl, played by Natalie Portman, that gets involved with a married man; everything had been so easy for her, except when she meets the man’s son. Now, the child is pretty much a genius and by far the most captivating character here. Chéri (2009) is also a fascinating story about society’s restraints and loss. When one of the richest and most powerful prostitutes of the 19th century decides to retire from such a hectic life, she falls in love with a 19 year old boy, but what happens after they have been living together for 6 years? Time happens, and with time comes age. With a devastating final scene, Cheri truly kept me on the edge of my seat; and, of course, Michelle Pfeiffer’s acting is absolutely brilliant. Although, if I had to choose August’s best, that would be Midnight in Paris (2011); Woody Allen is one of the best directors ever, and films like this prove why he’s so admired. When a romantic (romantic in the sense that loves the past) and successful Hollywood screenwriter accidentally lands on 1920s Paris, everything in his life changes, for starters, he decides that he can become a serious writer, but he also has doubts about marrying the woman he is supposed to wed. I read “A moveable feast” by Hemingway a couple of years ago, and seeing characters like Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Picasso and many more simply reminded me of the true spirit of that autobiographical novel. Excellent film.

My one and only comedy this month was Smiley Face (2007) directed by Gregg Araki. Well known for his polemic undertake on youth and homosexuality, this sure is completely different to other Araki’s productions, but it is still quite a funny movie. John Cameron Mitchell, another director famous for his incendiary approaches (transvestite protagonist in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” and non-simulated sex on screen in “Shortbus”) comes up with Rabbit Hole (2010), simply one of the strongest and most stunning dramas I’ve seen in a while: Aaron Eckhart and Nicole Kidman are a couple that has to deal with the death of their son; there is not one predictable moment in the entire film, and John Cameron Mitchell manages to deliver all the emotion and intensity without recurring to the usual techniques. Another very interesting drama was Wendy and Lucy (2008), a story about a girl (played by Michelle Williams, who has made a pretty good career so far) who is traveling with her dog, and as she runs out of money and her car breaks down, she is forced to steal food in a minimarket, and after that only degradation ensues; this is a harsh, untamed view on how poverty works in the US.

One of my favorite films this month was Whole New Thing (2005), a Canadian production about a somewhat precocious kid that has been homeschooled until his parents send him to a regular junior high school. Raised by open-minded intellectuals he soon clashes against a more pedestrian reality. His classmates hit him and accuse him of being a fag. And when he finds in his teacher a kindred soul he becomes very interested in him. Unlike other stories, this time the kid is the one trying to seduce his teacher, but in a very unconventional manner. Velvet Goldmine (1998) directed by Todd Haynes is one of the most personal, unique and innovative takes on countercultural movements and youth idols from the 70s and 80s; at the beginning we have a celebrity that is second only to the Beatles, a singer that dresses up as a woman and that constantly defies genre constraints, this character is superbly interpreted by Jonathan Rhys Mayer, there is so much veracity and sensibility in his acting that we soon forget he is a fictitious singer; one of his fans is a gay kid, played by Christian Bale; ten years after the singer’s fame has subsided he’s commissioned by a newspaper to write an article about the 70s famous super star. Now he has to embark upon a journey through his past as well as the current whereabouts of men that were famous a decade ago; Ewan McGregor (his full frontal nudity scene is quite memorable) and Tony Collette complete a remarkable casting. A truly commendable film.

As no month would be complete without European titles, I’ll talk about Chacun Sa Nuit (2006), a film that deals with a group of teenagers, four boys and a girl, that have grown up together. They’ve been best friends since early childhood but as sexuality irrupts in their lives, things do change. One of the boys, the leader of the group, defines himself as bisexual, and he feels like he must constantly engage his body through sexual activities to feel alive. He has sex with girls but also with one of the boys in the group, as well as older men who pay for his services. At the same time, the girl in the group has sex with all four boys, and the kids soon find themselves comparing their sexual performances against the same partner. When the leader of the group disappears, tragedy follows; and when the police find his dead body in the woods everyone becomes a suspect. Based on a real life case that happened in France, this story will horrify you and seduce you in equal measures. François Ozon’s La Petit Mort (2000) is the story of a gay artist, a photographer that has made a career in taking pictures of men as they’re about to reach orgasm. When the protagonist discovers that his father, the same father that never accepted his homosexuality, is now terminally ill he must make amends with him before it’s too late, but will he be able to reason with him, or will he simply take pictures of the dying man while he is naked and defenseless in the hospital’s bed? To say that Ozon is one of the most controversial directors in France would be an understatement, and La Petit Morte (a common French phrase that relates death with the moment of orgasm) is proof of that. Une Histoire Sans Importance (1980) is a black and white short film that recounts two young boys friendship: Claude and Philippe meet in school, one of them is what Freud denominated as a pubescent “perverse polymorph”, and the other teenager, slightly older, feels very attracted to his new young friend; after a moment of intimacy, though, everything falls to pieces. For a more in depth analysis please feel free to read and vote for my review on IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0240150/reviews

I also found some German productions from two decades ago. Coming Out (1989) is a very down-to-Earth portrayal of life in Germany in the late 80s, focused on the vicissitudes of the gay community. At the beginning, 19-year-old Mathias attempts to commit suicide; homosexuality makes him an outcast and he can’t put up with that. Simultaneously, Philipp, a high school teacher decides to hide his sexual orientation by seducing a woman. Both characters go through hell, and when they finally meet, the pressure of society and their own insecurities are a burden they cannot bear. It is especially revealing the conversation Philipp has with an old man, who had been sent to the concentration camps for being gay, decades after WWII Jewish people are no longer discriminated, but gay people still are. Spelen of Sterven (1990) is a short film that follows Kees, a high school student through a normal school day: how he’s bashed and mocked by other students, how he is stripped naked in the showers and humiliated; but even after all that, he still has enough courage to talk to the popular kid, Charel, an attractive, athletic blonde boy. They end up in the protagonist’s house, but something awry gets in their way, unable to cope with Kees peculiarities, Charel beats him up; left alone, bleeding and crying, Kees masturbates while fantasizing about the violent boy. A brutal ending and yet filled with what Freud used to call the unheimlich.
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Sospecho que este mes mi lista es un poco más breve de lo normal, pero de todos modos, aquí les traigo las películas de agosto. Lo mejor del mes ha sido “Lost in Translation” (2003) de Sofia Coppola; se trata de un film que ya había visto cuando fue estrenado hace años, pero al verlo de nuevo he comprobado que sigue siendo tan poderoso, o más, que antes. Muchos críticos han explorado la incomunicación como clave fundamental de la cinta, pero hay mucho más que analizar, así que para una interpretación más elaborado pueden consultar mi reseña en IMDB (y no se olviden de votar por ella): http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0335266/reviews-1916

Todo lo demás ha sido nuevo. Empecemos con una súper producción como “Captain America: The First Avenger” (2011), no esperaba mucho de un personaje que con las justas un puñado de guionistas sabe cómo aprovechar, y sin embargo la película nos muestra apropiadamente algunos de los aspectos fundamentales del héroe creado por Joe Simon & Jack Kirby. Particularmente, me encantó la propaganda de la película de Avengers que aparecía después de los créditos; siempre he sido un fan de los Vengadores y realmente me entusiasma ver que el proyecto se ha concretado, y además se ve prometedor. Otra cinta popular ha sido “Super 8” (2011), una aventura de ciencia ficción con mucho de Spielberg que se centra en la camaradería de un grupo de chiquillos, en sus sentimientos, su inocencia, sus sueños y la forma en que enfrentan una amenaza desconocida que se cierne sobre su pueblo. Por cierto, la película de zombis que los chicos están filmando es uno de los detalles más deliciosos de la nueva producción de JJ Abrams.

Como no puedo vivir un mes sin terror y/o suspenso, vi “Resident Evil: After Life” (2010). La primera de “Resident Evil” fue muy buena; sin embargo, las secuelas (incluyendo esta) son bastante menos logradas. También vi “Dr. Phibes Rises Again” (1972), aquí Vincent Price regresa a su popular personaje, un doctor obsesionado con la búsqueda de la inmortalidad, hay cantidad de muertes espectaculares y algunos momentos realmente bizarros y estrambóticos, ahora estoy impaciente por ver la primera parte. “The Midnight Meat Train” (2008) se basa en una idea original de Clive Barker, que se inspira tanto en películas slasher como en la carnicería viciosa de las víctimas; aunque también hay un terror sobrenatural que permanece oculto. Imperdible para amantes de lo sangriento y lo violento. “Play Misty for Me” (1971) de Clint Eastwood es lo que hoy en día consideraríamos un thriller con mucho suspenso y giros argumentales inesperados; una mujer psicópata se obsesiona con un Clint Eastwood joven; hay elementos que me recordaron a Misery, pero en este caso la situación se complica al máximo después de que los dos tienen sexo.

Clint Eastwood y Martin Sheen son los protagonistas de “The Rookie” (1990), una historia rápida, de acción, en la que dos policías deben desarticular una banda de traficantes de carros. También incluiría en la categoría de acción a “Jonah Hex” (2010), que adapta el cómic del mismo título de DC Comics; no obstante, con más fallas que aciertos, ni siquiera se salva gracias a su buen elenco.

Basada en un libro, “Birdy” (1984) es la crónica de una amistad y las consecuencias de la guerra de Vietnam; cuando dos adolescentes se hacen amigos, comienza una relación muy especial, uno de ellos es un amante de las aves, y eventualmente se obsesiona tanto con el tema que se aísla del mundo. Pero cuando van a la guerra y viven momentos traumáticos, todo cambia. 'Birdy', el amante de las aves, pierde la cordura, y su amigo regresa para tratar de ayudarlo. Aunque respeta el material de origen, el sutil subtexto homoerótico tiene mayor sentido en la novela. Cary Grant protagoniza “North by Northwest” (1959), cinta que demuestra una vez más por qué Alfred Hitchcock es un maestro del séptimo arte. Cuando un exitoso publicista es confundido con un tal Mr. Kaplan, los problemas empiezan. Hay gente que lo quiere ver muerto y todos creen que él es, de hecho, Mr. Kaplan. Hitchcock captura nuestra atención desde las secuencias iniciales y continúa sorprendiéndonos con intrigas, espionaje y giros argumentales hasta el desenlace final. Otro clásico sería “Mark of the Vampire” (1935) de Todd Browning, una curiosa forma de abordar el tema de los vampiros, el folklore y la superstición; cuando un noble es asesinado, todas las sospechas caen sobre el Conde Mora, una siniestra figura que vive en un castillo abandonado, pero cuando entra en escena un experto en vampiros, no todo es lo que parecía ser.

Y a diferencia de otros meses, esta vez hay algunos títulos románticos: “Love and Other Impossible Pursuits” (2009) relata la historia de una chica, interpretada por Natalie Portman, que se involucra con un hombre casado, todo es fácil para ella hasta que conoce al hijo de su pareja; un niño casi genio que se roba todas las escenas, sin duda el único personaje cautivador. “Chéri” (2009) es un relato fascinante sobre las limitaciones de la sociedad y la pérdida. Cuando la más poderosa y adinerada prostituta del siglo XIX decide jubilarse, se enamora de un chico de 19 años, pero ¿qué pasa después de 6 años de convivencia? El paso del tiempo y la edad son un castigo. En la devastadora escena final, Michelle Pfeiffer demuestra nuevamente su gran talento como actriz. Aunque, si tuviera que elegir lo mejor del mes, me quedaría con “Midnight in Paris” (2011), Woody Allen es uno de los directores a los que más admiro y respeto, y films como este demuestran por qué. Cuando un exitoso guionista de Hollywood termina accidentalmente varado en el París de los años 20, esa época que el tanto adora, decide que sí puede convertirse en un escritor de verdad, y también empieza a cuestionarse si debería casarse con su prometida. Leí "París era una fiesta" de Hemingway hace un par de años, y ver a personajes como Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Picasso y muchos otros me recordó el verdadero espíritu de esta novela autobiográfica. Excelente.

La única comedia del mes fue “Smiley Face” (2007), dirigida por Gregg Araki, bien conocido por su forma polémica de abordar la juventud y la homosexualidad; aunque esta película es completamente diferente a otras de Araki, vale señalar que es realmente divertida. John Cameron Mitchell, otro director famoso por sus controversiales trabajos (travestismo en “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” y sexo con penetración explícita en “Shortbus”) dirige Rabbit Hole (2010), simplemente uno de los más fuertes dramas que he visto últimamente: Aaron Eckhart y Nicole Kidman son una pareja que tiene que lidiar con la muerte de su hijo. No hay un sólo momento predecible en la película, y John Cameron Mitchell se las arregla para generar emoción e intensidad sin recurrir a las técnicas habituales. Otro drama interesante fue “Wendy and Lucy” (2008), la historia de una chica (interpretada por Michelle Williams que hasta ahora ha hecho una carrera bastante buena) que viaja en compañía de su mascota; cuando se le acaba el dinero y su carro se descompone, se ve obligada a robar comida de un minimarket, y a partir de ahí todo se deteriora; este es un crudo y duro vistazo sobre la pobreza en los Estados Unidos.

“Whole New Thing” (2005), producción canadiense, ha sido una de mis favoritas del mes: un chaval precoz que vive con sus padres hippies, liberales e intelectuales de pronto debe ir a un colegio común y corriente por primera vez en su vida. Pronto se da un encontronazo con la dura realidad; y mientras sus compañeros de clase lo insultan y lo maltratan, acusándolo de ser un marica, él encuentra en su profesor un espíritu afín. A diferencia de la mayoría de historias, esta vez es el muchacho el que intenta seducir a su maestro, aunque de una forma nada convencional. “Velvet Goldmine” (1998) dirigida por Todd Haynes es una de las interpretaciones más personales, originales e innovadoras de los movimientos contraculturales y los ídolos juveniles de los 70s y 80s; al inicio vemos a un cantante que se ha convertido en una celebridad casi tan grande como los Beatles, un cantante que se viste de mujer y que desafía las convenciones de género; este personaje está soberbiamente interpretado por Jonathan Rhys Mayer, que con gran veracidad y sensibilidad nos hace olvidar que el suyo es un cantante ficticio; Christian Bale actúa como uno de sus admiradores, un joven gay que diez años después escribe un artículo sobre las viejas glorias de la música: él se embarca en un viaje a través de sus recuerdos mientras busca el paradero actual de los que habían sido famosos una década atrás; Ewan McGregor (con una famosa escena de desnudez total) y Tony Collette completan un elenco formidable.

Ningún mes estaría completo sin títulos europeos, así que ahora le toca el turno a “Chacun Sa Nuit” (2005), un film que se centra en cuatro adolescentes varones y una chica que han crecido juntos y son amigos íntimos. Cuando la sexualidad irrumpe en sus vidas, todo cambia. Uno de los chicos, el líder del grupo, se define a sí mismo como bisexual, y siente que debe 'activar' su cuerpo sexualmente para sentirse vivo. Además de tener relaciones sexuales con chicas y con uno de los chicos del grupo, también se acuesta con hombres mayores que le pagan por sus servicios. Al mismo tiempo, la chica del grupo tiene sexo con los cuatro muchachos, y ellos comparan su desempeño sexual usando un mismo referente. Cuando el líder del grupo desaparece, la tragedia queda anunciada: pronto la policía encuentra su cadáver y todos pasan a ser sospechosos. Basada en un caso de la vida real, esta historia los horrorizará y seducirá por partes iguales. “La Petit Mort” (2000) de Francois Ozon narra la vida de un artista gay, un fotógrafo que ha alcanzado fama al fotografiar a hombres que están a punto de alcanzar el orgasmo. Cuando el protagonista descubre que su padre está gravemente enfermo, el mismo padre que nunca aceptó su homosexualidad, deberá tratar de hacer las paces con él. Pero, ¿será capaz de razonar con él o simplemente desnudará a su indefenso progenitor, en la cama del hospital, y le tomará una foto tras otra? Indudablemente, por algo Ozon es uno de los directores más controversiales de Francia y La Petit Morte (una frase francesa que relaciona la muerte con el momento del orgasmo) demuestra por qué. “Une Histoire Sans Importance” (1980) es un cortometraje en blanco y negro que narra la amistad entre dos muchachos: Claude y Philippe se conocen en el colegio, uno de ellos, en plena pubertad, encarna lo que Freud denominaría ‘polimorfismo perverso’, y el otro adolescente, un par de años mayor, se siente muy atraído hacia su nuevo amigo; después de la intimidad, no obstante, todo se derrumba. Para un análisis más completo por favor lean mi reseña en IMDB (y voten por ella): http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0240150/reviews

También encontré algunas producciones alemanas de hace dos décadas. “Coming Out” es un retrato realista de la vida en Alemania a fines de los 80s, que se enfoca en las vicisitudes de la comunidad gay. Al inicio vemos a Mathias, un chico de 19 años que intenta suicidarse al sentirse marginado por su homosexualidad. Simultáneamente, Philipp, un profesor de secundaria, decide seducir a una mujer para ocultar su orientación sexual. Ambos personajes viven un infierno hasta que se conocen, pero la presión de la sociedad y sus propias inseguridades son una carga que no pueden soportar. Es especialmente reveladora la escena en la que Philipp conversa con un anciano, que había sido enviado a un campo de concentración por ser gay; con el paso del tiempo, ahora los judíos sí son bien vistos en Alemania, pero los gays todavía no. “Spelen of Sterven” es un cortometraje que describe un día normal en la vida de Kees, un estudiante de secundaria: se hace especial hincapié en cómo es víctima del escarnio por parte de otros estudiantes, y cómo es desnudado en los vestuarios y humillado; pero incluso después de todo esto, él tiene valor suficiente para hablar con Charel, el chico más popular de la clase. Ambos terminan yendo a la casa del protagonista, pero algo insólito se interpone entre ellos; Charel, incapaz de lidiar con las particularidades de Kees, lo golpea salvajemente y se va. Kees, cubierto de sangre y lágrimas, se masturba mientras fantasea con la imagen del violento estudiante. El final es brutal, y tiene mucho de lo que Freud denominaba lo 'unheimlich'.

August 26, 2011

July Comic Books / cómics julio

July was a good month for comics. Out of the 17 issues I bought, I can say I enjoyed Witch Doctor tremendously, as well as the beginning of a new arc in Hack / Slash. Image’s new miniseries The Vault had a very interesting first issue. Alan Moore’s League of Extraordinary Gentlemen was absolutely great. Butcher Baker Candlestickmaker has everything I love about Garth Ennis; and the second issue of Fly was, again, a very pleasant surprise. Boom’s Elric sure seems promising, but not as much as Joe Hill’s new miniseries: Clockworks and The Cape, although with very different tones, these first issues hooked me since page one. And now, without further ado, here there is the complete list of my July comics (as per solicitations):



100 PENNY PRESS WORMWOOD GENTLEMAN CORPSE #1
Ben Templesmith (w & a & c) Ben Templesmith, 30 Days of Night and Fell co-creator, brings his beloved creation Wormwood, Gentleman Corpse, back in an all-new miniseries this month. And for just a single dollar, you can also experience the first issue of Wormwood's initial miniseries and see just how the little corpse-possessing worm got his start.
 BOYS BUTCHER BAKER CANDLESTICKMAKER #1
Writer: Garth Ennis Penciller/Inker/Covers: Darick Robertson The story of Billy Butcher, the Boys' mysterious leader, is told at last. From the backstreets of London's East End to the carnage of the Falklands War, from the heights of love to the depths of tragedy, the most violent man in comics reveals the terrible nature of the forces that drive him. And when he's done, he'll be ready... to finish things once and for all. MATURE THEMES


CAPTAIN AMERICA #1
Written by ED BRUBAKER Pencils & Cover by STEVE MCNIVEN Cover by STEVE MCNIVEN Variant Cover by OLIVIER COIPEL Variant Cover by JOHN ROMITA SR. Variant Cover by NEAL ADAMS Movie Variant Cover also available Blank Variant Cover also available Bestselling Cap writer Ed Brubaker and superstar artist Steve McNiven bring you the next huge chapter in Steve Rogers life, and it's a perfect jumping-on point for fans of the Cap movie. A funeral for a fallen friend turns into a race against time as the original Captain America makes his explosive return! 32 PGS./Rated T+


ELRIC THE BALANCE LOST #1
(W) Chris Roberson (A) Francesco Biagini (C) Francesco Mattina, Benjamin Carre Afterword by Neil Gaiman! For 40 years comic fandom has thrilled to the exploits of Elric since his introduction in Marvel Comics' Conan the Barbarian in the early 1970s. Neil Gaiman called Elric's creator Michael Moorcock 'my model for what a writer was' while Warren Ellis said he is one of the 'eight core sites in my creative genome.' Now the godfather of the Multiverse teams up with hot New York Times bestseller Chris Roberson (Superman, iZombie, Stan Lee's Starborn) for an ongoing series that sees a crisis break out across multiple worlds with Moorcock's other two most famous fantasy franchise characters, Corum of the Scarlet Robe and Dorian Hawkmoon! The workings of Fate are being tampered across the Multiverse, upsetting the Cosmic Balance. Elric is on a quest to restore The Balance and save the Multiverse from ruin! Elric, Corum, and Hawkmoon are forced into action far and wide, but will they fight on the side of Law... or Chaos?


FLY #2 C CVR ERIC J (MR)
Written By Raven Gregory Artwork By Eric J Colors by Michael Garcia Cover C By Ale Garza If your fix on superheroes isn't being whetted by the Big Two, take a taste of Raven Gregory's FLY. One dose and you'll be hooked. - Aint it Cool As a teenager Eddie Patron had thought he'd seen it all. That is until his nerdy friend Francis Keiser introduced him to the drug FLY. Now the sky's the limit and Eddie is about to be introduced to a whole new world. A world that is not without it's consequences. From the mind of the writer of Image Comics THE GIFT, Zenescopes WONDERLAND TRILOGY and THE WAKING comes Raven Gregory's latest tale of suspense set in a world where superheroes aren't really heroes at all... How far would you go to FLY?


HACK SLASH #6 CVR B BELLEGARDE (MR)
story TIM SEELEY art DAN LEISTER cover A DAN LEISTER & RACHELLE ROSENBERG cover B NATE BELLEGARDE 'FAME MONSTER,' Part One Every time Cassie falls asleep, she dreams of another celebrity murder. And when she wake up, she finds it has actually happened! The cast of 'Douche Beach,' the Pouperheus Sisters, Lady Art Projekt, even teen heart throb Kendall Schipp and his millions of 'Worschippers'... none are safe from the Fame Monster!


HAUNTED CITY #0 CVR A RYAN
Peter Johnson - Writer / Michael Ryan - Art / Peter Steigerwald - Colors In the corners of our minds, we find ourselves asking? who protects us from the unknown® Detective Tom Whalen is a 'lifer' on the force, as well as a veteran of the decrepit streets of New York City?along with all the freaks that come with it. Yet, the city might not be anything close to what he thinks it is, in fact-it might just be far worse than he ever imagined! Journey through the supernatural origin and expansion of America's most famous metropolis, New York City, in this introductory HAUNTED CITY zero issue that will uncover those which dwells in the shadows of the paranormal, and also reveals why Detective Whalen may not be able to survive the city he's spent his entire life protecting. Aspen Comics proudly teams up with producer and director McG's Wonderland Sound and Vision to bring you this all-new story that sets the stage for the brand-new HAUNTED CITY #1 issue heading your way next month. Make sure to get in on the ground floor of this incredible new series that's set to take comics and Hollywood by storm! Complete with an additional sketchbook section, never before seen art, and a stunning cover by series artist Michael Ryan, this special #0 issue is not to be missed!


JOE HILL THE CAPE #1 (OF 4)
Joe Hill & Jason Ciaramella (w) o Zach Howard (a) o Howard, Nelson Daniel (c) A line has been crossed. After years of failure, Eric has finally found something he's good at, and is determined to let the world know. The follow-up to December's critically acclaimed, quickly sold-out one-shot, this new miniseries is again written by Jason Ciaramella and Joe Hill, with art by Zach Howard and Nelson Daniel. Explore your dark side.


KIRBY GENESIS #2
Writer: Kurt Busiek Penciller/Inker: Alex Ross, Jackson Herbert Covers: Alex Ross (main), Ryan Sook (1/10) The Midnight Swan is on the loose! The Wanderer has reached Earth! The Godrealms are opened, the Lightning Lady is freed, and dark alliances are formed that even Silver Star and Galaxy Green may not be able to stand against. And in the middle of all this, one young man searches for his lost friend -- only to run afoul of Thunderfoot, the Half-Human. The explosion of cosmic wonder and unbridled adventure ramps up, as Kirby: Genesis continues! Also featuring Captain Victory, Dragonsbane and the Mythics, the Pioneer Two and more!


LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN CENTURY #2 1969
CHAPTER TWO takes place almost sixty years later in the psychedelic daze of Swinging London during 1969, a place where Tadukic Acid Diethylamide 26 is the drug of choice, and where different underworlds are starting to overlap dangerously to an accompaniment of sit-ins and sitars. The vicious gangster bosses of London's East End find themselves brought into contact with a counter-culture underground of mystical and medicated flower-children, or amoral pop-stars on the edge of psychological disintegration and developing a taste for Satanism. Alerted to a threat concerning the same magic order that she and her colleagues were investigating during 1910, a thoroughly modern Mina Murray and her dwindling league of comrades attempt to navigate the perilous rapids of London's hippy and criminal subculture, as well as the twilight world of its occultists. Starting to buckle from the pressures of the twentieth century and the weight of their own endless lives, Mina and her companions must nevertheless prevent the making of a Moonchild that might well turn out to be the antichrist.


LOCKE & KEY CLOCKWORKS #1 (OF 6)
Joe Hill (w) o Gabriel Rodriguez (a & c) Colonel Adam Crais's minutemen are literally trapped between a rock and a hard place; in the first days of the Revolutionary War, they find themselves hiding beneath 120 feet of New England stone, with a full regiment of redcoats waiting for them in the daylight... and a door into hell in the cavern below. The black door is open, and it's up to a 16-year-old smith named Ben Locke to find a way to close it. The biggest mysteries of the Locke & Key series are resolved as Clockworks opens, not with a bang, but with the thunderous crash of English cannons.


MARKSMEN #1 (OF 6)
story DAVID BAXTER & DAVE ELLIOTT art JAVIER ARANDA, GARRY LEACH & JESSICA KHOLINE OF IMAGINARY FRIENDS STUDIOS cover TOMM COKER Sixty years ago the oil ran out and debts were called in. Civil war followed that splintered America into warring fiefdoms. New San Diego is a technocratic utopia that offers the last bastion of peace and prosperity, provided you live within its walls. Drake McCoy is its best protector. McCoy, an expert marksman, defends the city from the numerous threats in the wasteland outside the walls. But when the oil rich Lone Star state sends a powerful army to steal New San Diego's energy technology, even Drake's leadership and skill may not be enough to fend off the siege.


NETHERWORLD #1 (OF 5) CVR A (MR)
Top Cow Productions, Inc. and Heroes and Villains Entertainment present the next evolution of supernatural noir! It's the message on the walls. It's the feeling in your gut. In this city, 'We are all lost.' Ray certainly is; a former cop turned private eye and junkie, haunted by his past in a city with no sun and no hope. A beautiful woman and a slick criminal both offer him the same job: Find a girl named Madeline and bring her to them. Ray doesn't want the job, but he can't just leave this girl in the middle. Thrust into the city's twisted underbelly, Ray will unveil Netherworld's darkest secrets and come face-to-face with his past. Beware, Ray. If you seek the truth, you just might find it. From masters of supernatural terror Bryan Edward Hill and Rob Levin (Pilot Season: 7 Days From Hell, Broken Trinity: Pandora's Box) and the art team of Tony Shasteen and colorist JD Mettler (Witchblade: Annual, Stephen King's Talisman) comes a haunting supernatural noir epic like nothing you've ever seen before.


RED WING #1 (OF 6)
To stay alive in the future, the best fighter pilots in the world not only have to perfect their skills and master their aircraft, they also have to know how to travel through time. Brought to you by award winning writer JONATHAN HICKMAN and possibly the best new talent of the year, NICK PITARRA, the Red Wing is the story of the greatest battle in the history of the history of three worlds.


VAULT #1 (OF 3)
story SAM SARKAR art GARRIE GASTONNY color SAKTI YUWONO cover BAGUS HUTOMO A small team of treasure hunters struggles to excavate a dangerous and legendary treasure pit before a massive storm hits Sable Island, the 'Graveyard of the North Atlantic'. Equipped with all the latest technology, the scientists believe they are prepared against all of nature's fury, but nothing can prepare them for what they are about to unleash from The Vault.


WALKING DEAD #87
story ROBERT KIRKMAN art / cover CHARLIE ADLARD & CLIFF RATHBURN / BW We learn to carry on without them. RETAILER WARNING: MAY NOT BE SUITABLE FOR ALL AGES


WITCH DOCTOR #2 (OF 4)
story BRANDON SEIFERT art / cover LUKA KETNER Another foray into medical horror from ROBERT KIRKMAN's Skybound Originals line! Is your baby really your baby - or is it a camouflaged monster that's feeding on you while you sleep® An infestation of Cuckoo Faeries is spreading through the nurseries of Arkham, Oregon, and it's up to Dr. Vincent Morrow, the Witch Doctor, to stop it! So why doesn't he want to bother® Plus: Shark cage diving with sea monsters!


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Julio fue un buen mes para los cómics. De los 17 ejemplares que compré, puedo decir que disfruté tremendamente con Witch Doctor, así como con el inicio del nuevo arco argumental de Hack / Slash. La nueva miniserie de Image, The Vault, tiene un comienzo interesante. League of Extraordinary Gentlemen de Alan Moore fue absolutamente genial. Butcher Baker Candlestickmaker condensa lo que más me encanta de Garth Ennis; y el segundo número de Fly fue, de nuevo, una muy placentera sorpresa. Elric de Boom parece prometedor, pero no tanto como las nuevas miniseries de Joe Hill: Clockworks y The Cape, aunque con tonos muy diferentes, estos primeros números capturaron por completo mi atención desde la página uno. Y sin más preámbulos, aquí va la lista de mis cómics de julio:


100 PENNY PRESS WORMWOOD GENTLEMAN CORPSE #1
¿Cuál es el origen de esta criatura capaz de poseer cuerpos?


BOYS BUTCHER BAKER CANDLESTICKMAKER #1
Esta es la historia de BILLY BUTCHER, el misterioso líder del grupo. Desde los callejones del bajo Londres, a la carnicería de la batalla; de la cumbre del amor hasta los abismos de la tragedia, todo es revelado al fin.


CAPTAIN AMERICA #1
El funeral de un amigo se convierte en una carrera contra el tiempo en el explosivo regreso del Capitán América original.


ELRIC THE BALANCE LOST #1
Una crisis amenaza con destruir múltiples mundos, amenazando la balanza cósmica. ELRIC buscará la ayuda de CORUM, el de la túnica roja, y DORIAN HAWKMOON para restaurar el equilibrio, ¿a favor de Caos u Orden?


FLY #2 C CVR ERIC J (MR)
Como adolescente, Eddie pensaba que lo había visto todo. Hasta que su amigo Francis lo introduce en el consumo de la droga FLY. Ahora el cielo es el límite y Eddie pronto conocerá un mundo absolutamente nuevo.


HACK / SLASH #6 CVR B BELLEGARDE (MR)
Cada vez que CASSIE duerme, sueña con el asesinato de una celebridad. Y cuando despierta descubre que, de hecho, así ha sucedido.


HAUNTED CITY #0 CVR A RYAN
Tom es un veterano detective en las decrépitas calles de New York. Sin embargo, la ciudad no es lo que él cree que es. Empieza el viaje que narra el origen de la sobrenatural expansión de la metrópolis más famosa de América.


JOE HILL THE CAPE #1 (OF 4)
Una línea ha sido cruzada. Después de años de fracaso, Eric finalmente ha descubierto para qué es bueno, y todos sabrán qué es.


KIRBY GENESIS #2
El Cisne de Medianoche ha escapado, El Errante ha alcanzado la Tierra, los Reinos Divinos están abiertos, la Dama del Rayo está libre, y ni siquiera Estrella de Plata y Galaxia Verde podrán enfrentar las oscuras alianzas que se han formado. Y en medio de todo ello, un joven busca a una amiga perdida…


LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN CENTURY #2 1969
En la vorágine psicodélica de Londres durante 1969, el ácido es la droga que todos eligen. Los bajos mundos se sobreponen uno encima del otro. Los viciosos gánsteres de los bajos fondos londinenses entran en contacto con una ‘contracultura subte’, de místicos y medicados hijos de las flores o amorales estrellas del pop al borde de la desintegración psicológica y con interés en el satanismo. Alertados sobre una amenaza sobre la orden mágica que investigaron en 1910, una moderna MINA HARKER y su menguante liga de camaradas intentarán navegar por los peligrosos rápidos de la subcultura hippie y la criminal, al igual que el mundo del crepúsculo de los ocultistas. A punto de ceder por las presiones del siglo XX y por el peso de sus propias vidas inmortales, Mina y los suyos deben evitar a toda costa el nacimiento del Niño Lunar, que bien podría ser el anticristo.


LOCKE & KEY CLOCKWORKS #1 (OF 6)
En los primeros días de la guerra revolucionaria, los hombres de Adam Craig se encuentran escondidos bajo 120 pies de piedra de Nueva Inglaterra; y un regimiento de chaquetas rojas los persigue. Con las puertas del infierno abiertas, Ben Locke deberá encontrar la forma de cerrarlas.


MARKSMEN #1 (OF 6)
Hace sesenta años el petróleo se acabó y las deudas mundiales fueron cobradas. Una Guerra Civil despedazó Norteamérica. Ahora, Nuevo San Diego es una utopía tecnocrática, el último bastión de paz y prosperidad para aquellos que viven al interior de sus muros. Con una perfecta puntería, Drake protege a la ciudad de las numerosas amenazas que vienen de afuera. Hasta que el estado petrolero de la Estrella Solitaria manda un ejército.


NETHERWORLD #1 (OF 5) CVR A (MR)
El mismo mensaje se repite en las paredes “estamos perdidos”. Al menos para un ex policía que ha caído en desgracia, así parece ser.


RED WING #1 (OF 4)
Para permanecer vivos en el futuro, los mejores pilotos del mundo no sólo deberán perfeccionar la navegación sino también el viaje temporal.


VAULT #1 (OF 3)
Un pequeño equipo de buscadores del tesoro excava en un legendario pozo antes que una peligrosa tormenta los alcance. Armados con tecnología de punta, están preparados para todo excepto lo que encontrarán.


WALKING DEAD #87
Aprendemos a sobrevivir sin ellos.


WITCH DOCTOR #2 (OF 4)
¿Es tu bebé realmente tu bebé? ¿O es un monstruo camuflado que se alimenta de ti mientras duermes? Doctor Morrow versus la plaga.

August 1, 2011

July films / Películas julio (2011)

Compared to other months, the amount of films in July was considerably lesser… I guess that’s what happens when I stop focusing on short films. Anyway, I did manage to find many interesting things. Let’s start with “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2” (2011) directed by David Yates, a film that had a profound emotional impact on me, as I commented on my previous post (go and read it now if you haven’t already). Another extraordinary movie, although completely different from the “boy who lived” saga, was “Scream 4” (2011); it’s hard to believe I saw Scream 1 fifteen years ago. Yes, director Wes Craven redefined the horror genre then and he does it again here. I don’t know if the nature of the world has become more perverse now than it was in the late 90s (for Jacques Lacan a perverse individual is the one who assumes the position of the object-instrument of the "will-to-enjoy" -volonté-de-jouissance- which is not his own will but that of the big Other), but let’s keep in mind that sometimes all that seems to matter to some people is the amount of Facebook friends or twitter followers they have, or how many hits do they vids get on YouTube. Quality is no longer relevant –if it ever was– but if in the past that wasn’t evident it is now: If the possibility of living in an openly perverse society –according to poststructuralist theories– isn’t horror then I don’t know what is.  


Other interesting films that tackle the subject of human depravity and unethical actions are Stephen Frears’ “Dangerous Liaisons” (1988) and Ingmar Bergman’s “The Serpent’s Egg” (1977). The first one deals with the plots and conspiracies within the nobility in France in the 18th century, adapting the novel of Choderlos de Laclos (which has been thoroughly analyzed by several literary critics). The second one takes a particularly interesting moment in history: 1930s Germany and the economic crisis. It is important to see the level of poverty and human misery that the German people had been suffering to understand the rise of Adolf Hitler. With the largest inflation in human history (apparently the second one would be the Peruvian debacle in the 80s), a couple must struggle to survive, and as they are completely desperate they have no other choice but to take part in an experiment done by scientists that could have perfectly embraced the Nazi approach.


In the same line, Vittorio De Sica’s “Ladri di biciclette” (1948) is a true classic of cinema. A father and his son must look for their stolen bicycle; without it the father will lose his job, and without his job the family could very well starve to death. Italy was going through serious financial problems after WWII and this masterpiece recreates the people’s despair. Eloy de la Iglesia’s “Navajeros” (1980) is based on the life of popular youth delinquent El Jaro, who has become a legendary figure by escaping from the cops all the time, until one night he is caught by a drugs dealer that plans to have him sodomized. Focused entirely on Spain’s outcasts, the movie succeeds by portraying the dead-end lives of young boys and their miserable urban background. 


The strenuous conflict between youngsters and the law can be exemplified in two films. In “Swing Kids” (1993), a group of teenagers defy the laws of a Nazi-ruled Germany by listening to swing music (deemed as Jewish-influenced music and therefore forbidden); Christian Bale and Robert Sean Leonard (Dr. Wilson from House MD) have stellar roles in this dramatic movie. On the other hand, Jacques Audiard’s “Un Prophète” (2009) begins with a young Arab’s first day in prison and his experiences: how he attempts to escape from those who would try to sexually abuse him, and how eventually he manages to become a powerful druglord. Intense and haunting, this is truly an unforgettable story.  

On the comedy front, this month I was glad to see Bill Murray, always a great actor, in “Caddyshack” (1980), a harmlessly fun, golf oriented flick; and “What About Bob?” (1991) a very amusing story about a patient absolutely obsessed with his shrink. My favorite Bill Murray’s film continues to be Lost in Translation which is highly ranked on my top 100 list, but his non-dramatic acting is delightful (for example, in Zombieland). 


David Lynch’s “Wild at Heart” (1990) might very well be one of the craziest love stories ever; taking the basic topics of romantic drama Lynch unravels them and reinvents them along with outbursts of violence in a world of criminals and persecution; the result is a very unique film, but then again, when it comes to Lynch everything is always about originality. “Unmade Beds” (2009) directed by Alexis Dos Santos shares a few traits with his first cinematographic project, Glue (you can read a review on it here http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0484039/usercomments and if you consider it good enough please vote for it); a fatherless 20 year-old kid has embarked upon a journey, an existential journey if you will, exploring not only London but his own sexuality as well. The director takes an experimental and moody approach that works quite well for most of the movie. Centered on another young man devoid of fatherly figures, “HerzHaft” (2007) approaches a most delicate subject: the illegal sexual relationship between a 15 year-old high school student and his sports teacher. I also saw “Lucky Bastard” (2009) which was a bit of a letdown.


This has been quite a French month too. Christophe Honoré’s “Ma Mère” (2004) brings up one of the most discussed taboos in history: incest. In this case, a young man and his mother get so intimate after the father’s death that they eventually end up having sex with each other. This isn’t, however, a simple Oedipal cautionary tale as it’s based on Bataille’s literary work, Bataille is considered one of the most brilliant contemporary French authors, although he has been misunderstood by many; in his work sex and mysticism work together along several deconstruction theories. If only for that, for the bravery of cinematographically adapting Bataille’s novel, this is worth watching. Sexuality is also a fundamental aspect of Frank Guérin’s“Un Jour D’Eté” (2006), as two high school boys share intimate moments only to drift away before one of them dies accidentally (played by Théo Frilet, who is no strange to gay themed productions such as Weekend a la campagne and Plein Sud). The surviving teenager, riddled with guilt, must now try to cope with the loss of his best friend while at the same time accepting the fact that he might experience a strong sexual attraction towards another high school boy. 


For the past couple of months I’ve reviewed a number of Pascal-Alex Vincent’s short films. Now it’s turn to pay attention to his first full-length film “Donne-Moi La Main” (2008): Antoine and Quentin are twins. Relationships amongst brothers are always complicated, there is much love and hate, constant conflicts, but usually nothing escalates as dangerously as it happens in Donne-Moi La Main, perhaps the unspoken homosexuality of one of them acts as the catalyst of disaster. For a more in depth analysis you can read my review here http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0877700/usercomments and you can also vote for it. For a short scene you can check my YouTube account here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKbBZf5Chh4  


Cyril Legann’s “Chemin de Croix” (2008) takes place during a day, a particular day in which a teenage boy is kidnapped by a young criminal (played by Johan Libéreau, who has worked in other movies of gay interest such as "Les Témoins" and "Douches froides"). As the two of them spend the night together they develop a very unusual bond, and after a matter of hours they are already sleeping together. Finally, Olivier Ducastel & Jacques Martineau’s “Ma Vraie Vie à Rouen” (2002) is centered on a 16 year-old boy who loves to dance and skate on ice; he gets obsessed with filming himself and others on a daily basis, after posing naked in front of his camera and trying to convince his best friend to do the same, he soon realizes that there is a reason why he’s never been interested in girls. For a short scene you can check this link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-U2X9rr2Rc  


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En comparación a otros meses, en julio no ha habido tantas películas (supongo que en parte se debe a haber dejado de lado los cortometrajes) aunque igual me las arreglé para ver algunas muy interesantes. Empecemos con Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2 (2011) dirigida por David Yates, que me causó un gran impacto emocional, tal como comenté en el post anterior (si no lo han leído, háganlo ahora). Otro film extraordinario fue Scream 4 (2011), es difícil creer que ya han pasado quince años desde que vi Scream 1. Sí, el director Wes Craven redefinió el género de terror a fines de los 90s y ahora vuelve a lograrlo. No sé si la naturaleza del mundo es ahora más perversa que hace década y media (entendamos lo perverso tal como lo define Jacques Lacan: el perverso es el sujeto que asume la posición de instrumento de la voluntad de goce del otro -volonté-de-jouissance- anulando su propia voluntad en aras de un gran Otro), pero no debemos olvidar que a veces, para algunas personas, lo único que importa es la cantidad de amigos que tienen en Facebook o seguidores en twitter, o la cantidad de clicks que consiguen en sus videos de YouTube. La calidad ha dejado de ser relevante -si es que alguna vez lo fue- pero si antes esto no era evidente ahora sí lo es: Se me ocurren pocas cosas más terroríficas que la posibilidad real de vivir en una sociedad abiertamente perversa.


Otras cintas interesantes que manejan el tema de la depravación humana y las acciones no éticas son Dangerous Liaisons (1988) de Stephen Frears y The Serpent’s Egg (1977) de Ingmar Bergman. La primera narra las intrigas y conspiraciones al interior de la nobleza francesa en el siglo XVIII, adaptando la novela de Choderlos de Laclos (que ha sido exhaustivamente analizada por diversos críticos literarios). La segunda desarrolla un momento histórico particularmente interesante: la Alemania de 1930 y la crisis económica. Es importante entender el nivel de pobreza y miseria humana del pueblo alemán para comprender el ascenso de Adolf Hitler. Con la mayor inflación registrada en la historia (la segunda mayor la tuvimos aquí en Perú, en la década de los 80s), una pareja debe luchar para sobrevivir, y al estar completamente desesperados no tienen otra opción que participar en un experimento hecho por científicos que encajarían perfectamente con la mentalidad nazi.


En la misma línea, Ladri di biciclette (1948) de Vittorio De Sica es un verdadero clásico del cine. Un padre y su hijo deben buscar la bicicleta que les ha sido robada; sin ella, el padre perderá su trabajo y sin trabajo la familia moriría de hambre. Italia pasó por una gran depresión económica tras la Segunda Guerra Mundial, y esta obra maestra recrea la desesperanza de la gente. Navajeros (1980) de Eloy de la Iglesia se basa en la vida del popular delincuente juvenil El Jaro, que se ha convertido en una figura legendaria al escapar siempre de la policía, hasta que una noche un narcotraficante, con la intención de sodomizarlo, lo atrapa. Enfocada enteramente en los marginales de España, la película tiene éxito al retratar las vidas sin rumbo de los chavales y su miserable entorno urbano.


El conflicto entre los jóvenes y la ley encuentra lugar en otras dos producciones: En Swing Kids (1993), un grupo de adolescentes desafían las leyes de la Alemania nazi al escuchar música swing (tachada como producto judío y por tanto prohibida); memorables papeles de Christian Bale y Robert Sean Leonard (Dr. Wilson de la serie House). Por otro lado, Un Prophète (2009) de Jacques Audiard empieza con un joven árabe en su primer día en la cárcel: tendrá que aprender a escapar de aquellos que quieren abusar sexualmente de él, y terminará como un gran narcotraficante. Intensa y evocativa.


En cuanto a comedias, este mes me alegró ver a Bill Murray en Caddyshack (1980), diversión inofensiva; y What About Bob? (1991) una historia bastante chistosa de un paciente obsesionado con su psiquiatra. Murray tiene la cualidad de ser genial en dramas (Lost in Translation) y también en comedias o parodias (Zombieland).


Wild at Heart (1990) de David Lynch bien podría ser una de las más enloquecidas historias de amor; Lynch toma los tópicos habituales para desarmarlos y reinventarlos, y agrega estallidos de violencia en un mundo de criminales y persecución, la originalidad es la divisa de Lynch después de todo. Unmade Beds (2009) de Alexis Dos Santos guarda similitud con su primer proyecto Glue (pueden leer mi reseña aquí http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0484039/usercomments y también pueden votar por ella); un chico de 20 años, sin padre, se embarca en un viaje (un viaje existencial) y se dedica a explorar Londres y su propia sexualidad. Protagonizada por un alumno de secundaria, también sin padre, HerzHaft (2007) describe la ilícita relación sexual entre el menor y su profesor de deporte. También vi Lucky Bastard (2009), un poco decepcionante.


Este ha sido un mes bastante francés. Ma Mère (2004) de Christophe Honoré ahonda en uno de los tabús más explotados: el incesto. En este caso, un joven y su madre empiezan a tener relaciones sexuales tras la muerte del padre. Sin embargo, al estar basada en la obra literaria de Bataille esta no es una simple historia sobre el complejo de Edipo; Bataille es considerado uno de los más brillantes autores franceses contemporáneos, en su trabajo el sexo y el misticismo dialogan con la corriente teórica de la deconstrucción. La audacia de adaptar una novela de Bataille es razón suficiente para ver Ma Mère. La sexualidad también juega un papel fundamental en Un Jour D’Eté (2006) de Frank Guérin; dos muchachos de secundaria comparten momentos íntimos y terminan distanciándose poco antes que uno de ellos muera (interpretado por Théo Frilet, quien ha participado en producciones de temática gay como Weekend a la campagne y Plein Sud). Con sentimientos de culpa, el otro chico deberá aceptar la pérdida de su mejor amigo al mismo tiempo que experimenta una fuerte atracción sexual por otro joven.


En los últimos meses he revisado varios cortometrajes de Pascal-Alex Vincent. Ahora le llega el turno a su primer largometraje Donne-Moi La Main (2008): Antoine y Quentin son gemelos. Las relaciones entre hermanos a menudo son conflictivas, pero nunca tanto como en Donne-Moi La Main; tal vez la homosexualidad de uno de ellos actúa como catalizador del desastre. Para un análisis más extenso pueden revisar mi reseña (y votar por ella) aquí http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0877700/usercomments y si quieren ver una escena corta pueden encontrarla en mi cuenta de YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKbBZf5Chh4  


Chemin de Croix (2008) de Cyril Legann se desarrolla en un día, un día particular en el que un adolescente es secuestrado por un joven criminal (interpretado por Johan Libéreau que ha trabajado en otras películas de interés gay como Les Témoins y Douches froides). Al pasar la noche juntos, un extraño vínculo nace entre ambos; y, en cuestión de horas, terminan durmiendo juntos. Finalmente, Ma Vraie Vie à Rouen (2002) de Olivier Ducastel & Jacques Martineau se centra en la vida de un chiquillo de 16 años que disfruta bailando y esquiando sobre hielo; se obsesiona con filmarse a sí mismo y a otras personas diariamente, luego de posar desnudo frente a la cámara y tratar de convencer a su mejor amigo para que haga lo mismo, pronto descubre que si nunca sintió atracción por las chicas es por una razón. Pueden ver una escena breve aquí http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-U2X9rr2Rc