Monday, July 26, 2010

I Wish They Wouldn't Be California Girls

Check out Anywyn Crawford on the current crop of female pop stars. Every time I see some Cult Studies defense of one of these ladies, talented as some of them may occasionally be, it irks me some, particularly the feminist in me. It's not that there aren't occasional moments of pop bliss worth defending, but the remaining dross begs the question: is this the best femininity can do? I refuse to leave the bar that low and think that's a greater insult to women than any ejaculatory Katy Perry-as-pimp's-candy-plaything video ever could.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


I personally enjoyed Christopher's Nolan's Inception greatly, a vie for more intelligent summer fare if there ever was one. However, I'm inclined to agree a bit with Carl Neville's critique over at The Impostume. For a film with a such a great deal of imagination, one could have done better than crumbling buildings in an otherwise placid drowned-world setting to represent pure id. Interesting to think though of the violent espionage thriller (a la James Bond in artic siege sequences) as a simple remove from total ego-loss, that place here superego transforms into an ideal of hyperactive self-defense and destruction. Here's a film unlikely to get the sequel treatment, but which would benefit greatly from it, because as Carl Impostume points out- what's at stake here anyway? Who cares about Oedipal conflict resolutions for energy oligarchs? That's why all the arguments that this is the most Dickian film that PKD never wrote ring hollow. Dick always made the ontological implications of his precepts utterly disastrous for both the human species and the mind, a dystopia reimagined as the banal.

An interesting perspective, whose critique I don't think limits one's enjoyment of the film on the whole:

"Both Synecdoche and Inception have moved on from these early works to suggest that somehow late capitalist culture with it’s shifting levels of mediation and hyper self-consciousness, breakdown of official history and meta–narratives, is in fact cognitively mappable and navigable: the polestar is love (this looks to be true of the upcoming The Adjustment Bureau to a nauseating degree) which takes on a quasi-religious character, here “a leap of faith”. In Inception Di Caprio’s motive for ensuring that the business empire of his target is eventually broken up and his monopoly on the world energy market is undermined is not political, it’s so he’ll be allowed to see his children again. We’re not invited to celebrate the blow struck against the Oligarchs, our feelgood is that Leo has resolved his “issues” and can hug his cute kids in his roomy house. "- The Impostume

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Crash on Your Last Splazsh

A critical view of Actress's newest over at PopMatters

Lots of ink on this one so far, mostly positive, figure'd I'd chime in from the skeptical camp.

Ear Drums, Black Holes, and Other Orifices

I guess I missed this one. A review from a bit back of Starkey's (mostly) excellent Ear Drums and Black Holes.

On a person note, it's great to have seen Starkey come so far. I remember checking out Myspace paces of the electronic music artists dominating Philadelphia's music scene back when I first moved here and being disappointed by the lack of talent. Of those I bookmarked, Starkey was one of them, but wasn't much to write home about. His talent has definitely exploded since then and is now certainly worthy of the international acclaim he's been getting.