Love, Death And Robots

Apparently they wanted to do something like 'Neo-Tokyo', or 'Heavy Metal', or 'Memories', but whatever weird cultural conditions that made those movies possible are long, long gone. Instead, this is very, very fancy CGI with writing that ranges from below-average to cringey. A lot of one-dimensional characters, a lot of jokes that don't land, a lot of extremely old science-fiction cliches exhumed and presented with as little enthusiasm as possible.

The constant attempts at edginess in 'Love, Death And Robots' are offset by the fact that all of the stories are older than Poodle Skirts. No amount of CGI titty is going to cover the fact that they're selling young people watered-down versions of stories that were written before sitcom married couples slept in separate beds.

I want to say that this is an example of style over substance, but those old anthologies managed to be cool in spite of or because of style over substance. Besides 'Love, Death and Robots' isn't really that stylish, in spite of the top-notch CGI. I kept going 'Wow, that CGI is marginally better than CGI from two years ago!', then getting quickly bored of scenes that were basically visually uninteresting. I have no idea what kind of decision-making process lead to such a poorly-executed project.



2001: A Space Odyssey (The Book) - Arthur C. Clarke

I read this once as a child and once in my thirties. Both times it was like a punch in the face. But a happy punch in the face. Even knowing the outline of the story, there's a sense of tension and fear hidden in the details that I've never experienced in any other book. The philosophical themes are subtle and unpretentious, and tangle themselves effortlessly into the frighting sense of vastness and emptiness and time. Maybe the best proof there is that a book can be short and sweet and part of a low-brow genre and still blow most fine literature out of the water.



Tuca And Bertie (2019)

I think it's tacky to review something when I'm obviously so far out of the intended target demo. I don't want to be like some wilfully-naive critic who complains that an action movie isn't a nuanced drama, or that a comedy isn't a nuanced drama, or that a children's movie isn't a nuanced drama, etc., etc., etc..

On the other hand, the marketing went after Bojack Horseman fans, heavily referenced its behind-the-scenes connections with Bojack, and did not let on, in the slightest, how different a show this was, so I'm sure I'm not the only person to have accidentally watched this.

It's supposed to be the trials and tribulations of two female friends in the city, but there's not much character development and the jokes are so-so. Every frame looks like it was designed to sell "Live Laugh Love" merchandise. I wouldn't be surprised if Facebook starts getting flooded with Bertie and Tuca memes about which diseases vaccinations cause.

A lot of hype was made over multi-ethnic casting. And wow, all the Asians play meek, work-driven geeks and the Black actress plays a sassy idiot who digs through and is covered in garbage. This is a show made by an affluent white woman with the obvious target demo of affluent white women who say "I'm not racist but..."



Faraway, So Close (1993)

I really wanted to like this because I liked the first one so much. But, really, it's unfocused, dumb, ruins all the characters, and the plot is that they're preventing Germans from watching porn?



Trainspotting (1996)

The city I live in is crowded with heroin addicts and none of them look as cool or sexy as in this movie. And they're definitely not jacked like the one guy is. And they never wear sexy short-sleeved clothing because they want to hide their track marks. And they don't have sexy haircuts, or haircuts at all. Instead of cool music and fun and thrills, a more realistic movie would feature a scar-covered homeless person with tangled hair locking himself in a smelly public bathroom stall for most of the day, because that way no one will disturb his high. Probably the most unrealistic thing about this movie is a heroin addict being disgusted with a filthy public toilet.


I'd probably be willing to forgive that if the movie was really good, but it's just another failure of a 90s Tarantino rip-off, that only barely gets by on visuals



The Usual Suspects (1995)

Meh



8 Mile (2002)

A perfect, innocent rap angel is oppressed and beset all sides by the evil devil people who surround him and live only to ruin and destroy him. An unbiased depiction of Eminem's early life.



Scent Of A Woman (1992)

This hasn't aged well. It's 90sish in the worst way possible. Like A Few Good Men, someone has proven that this movie can be edited down to less than 3 minutes without losing any of the important plot points or characterization.



Ways Of Seeing (1972)

A four-part documentary where an art critic discusses the importance of context in fine art. Cynical, but in a very specific and focused way, and with insights that are interesting and occasionally frightening. Also, very groovy 70s aesthetics.

In last part he discusses the psychology of advertizing. Some footage of Jimmy Savile pops up for half a second, as well as a picture of an ad featuring Rolf Harris, which is pretty jarring and unintentionally drives the episode's point home in odd, unexpected ways.