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Monthly Archives: March 2007

Low versus cake

The comestible, that is, not the band.

Over the past few albums, Low has changed from a great minimal sadcore band, to a great indie-rock band on The Great Destroyer, to something strange and dark and beautiful on their new album, Drums and Guns, which this video is from.

I’m not sure it’s the greatest video of all time, but then, I’ve only watched it about ten times since last night.

I think it’s about Iraq.

God help me, he’s starting to make sense

I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.

  • Click (make sure you have your sound on!)

What American accent do I have?

What American accent do you have?

Your Result: North Central

“North Central” is what professional linguists call the Minnesota accent. If you saw “Fargo” you probably didn’t think the characters sounded very out of the ordinary. Outsiders probably mistake you for a Canadian a lot.

The West
The Midland
The Inland North
The South
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

It’s always a little jarring to even be reminded that I have an accent. Surely, it’s everybody else? No?

When I saw Fargo, I really did feel that the accents were only a slightly-exaggerated version of the accents I grew up with in Saskatchewan. That’s probably the first time I actually heard someone in a movie doing that accent.

When I moved to Toronto, I noticed immediately that everybody was taking like the actors on Degrassi High and The Kids in the Hall, even though until that moment, I had never even thought of them as having any accent at all. And now, living in Vancouver, I almost never notice the local accent, though I noticed it when I moved here (they say their short-as and long-os funny here). When I meet someone from the Prairies, though, I can usually pick up on it, especially if they’re from a small town. And then once they start talking about a whack of bunny hugs and gautch in the slough, the jig is up.

On my international adventures, I always get called out on my Canadian pronunciation of “aboot”, which I simply cannot hear. This annoys me to no end, since I was always convinced it was a myth, and I really can’t tell the difference between the way I say “about” and the way Americans say it.

Eric-Approved Movies of 2007

Noel Murray’s blog post A Great Movie Year in the Making? inspired me to update my own list of films I want to see in 2007. Some will surely suck, and probably the best upcoming films aren’t even on this list, but these are the ones I’ll be watching for. Please go ahead and use that comment link there to notify me of what I’m missing out on. No, seriously: do it.

Villa Carlos Paz Rescue Dawn. Werner Herzog adapts his own (utterly amazing and mindblowing) documentary Little Dieter Needs to Fly as a feature film starring Christian Bale. This was apparently finished almost two years ago but held up by financial issues. March 30.

can you buy Lyrica over the counter The Lookout. A Manitoba-shot crime thriller about two disabled roommates (Jeff Daniels and Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who get caught up in a bank heist. Getting very strong pre-release buzz at SXSW. March 30.

Grindhouse. Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino’s ode to cheezy 70s trash. The trailer is like they opened my head and scooped out my dreams. April 6.

Hot Fuzz. The Shaun of the Dead crew reteams for this story about a London supercop who gets sent to a backwater village because he makes all the other cops look bad. April 13.

Spider-Man 3. The fact that there they’re larding the movie with three high-profile celebrity villains certainly doesn’t bode well, but I enjoyed the first two Spider-Man flicks. May 4.

Fay Grim. Hal Hartley is still one of may favorite indie-auteurs, but his last few films kind of left me cold. This is a sequel to one of his best, Henry Fool, with Parker Posey as a globe-trotting naif. Will it be a return to form, or a new direction, or more head-scratching weirdness?May 18.

Ratatouille. It’ll be interesting to see if Brad Bird can pull another Incredibles out of his hat. June 29.

The Simpsons. I haven’t seen the show in years, but the trailer was funny enough to make me wonder if I was missing out by not watching the show. (I’m told I’m not.) July 27.

The Bourne Ultimatum. I saw The Bourne Identity and The Bourne Supremacy for the first time fairly recently, and was pretty impressed. Bring it on, says I. August 3.

Halloween. By Rob Zombie. If anybody can revive the series, it’s him. Though I’m still not sure anybody should even be trying. August 31.

The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford. Apparently poetic and violent western shot in Manitoba and Alberta. From the director of Chopper. September.

Eastern Promises. David Cronenberg and Viggo Mortensen follow up the brilliant A History of Violence with this thriller, also starring Naomi Watts. Screenplay by the writer of Dirty Pretty Things. September 14.

I’m Not There. Todd Haynes’s film about Bob Dylan, with seven actors playing different aspects of the ultimate nasal-voiced folkie. Destined to be either brilliant or insufferable. September 21.

3:10 to Yuma. I’m usually not a fan of remakes of classic films, but this one has Christian Bale and Russell Crowe as the two gunfighters, so at least if it’s a failure, it’ll be an interesting one. October 5.

Beowulf. On the one hand, it’s written by Neil Gaiman. On the other, it’s directed by Robert Zemeckis. November 14.

No Country for Old Men.
The Coen brothers’ film based on Cormac McCarthy’s western novel. I kind of wish they would go back to filming their own stories, but I’m still willing to follow them anywhere.

Sweeny Todd. Johnny Depp in a bloody-minded musical? Sounds great, but alas, Tim Burton is directing. Dear Tim Burton, please, please, please stop fucking up promising projects with your irritating, calculated “whimsy”. Please? Maybe just this one? December.

The Darjeeling Limited. Wes Anderson, you can keep up the whimsy. This has Owen Wilson, Jason Schwartzmann and Adrien Brody as brothers taking a train across India. December 25.

Youth Without Youth. Francis Ford Coppola’s first film in ten years, based on a philosophical Romanian novel.

Be Kind, Rewind. Michel Gondry’s new movie! Jack Black remakes blockbusters (including Back to the Future, The Lion King and Robocop) in his backyard to keep his video store’s one loyal (but senile) customer happy after his magnetic head erases the store’s inventory.

Exiled. Hong Kong action movies didn’t really die out when John Woo left, but they did lay low. I hope I get to see this one, by Johnny To. Hey, that rhymed.

Syndromes and a Century. I missed this Thai film at the VIFF last fall, but looks like I’ll get another chance. Apparently, excellent, if slow.

There Will Be Blood. Paul Thomas Anderson’s film of Upton Sinclair’s novel about turn-of-the-century oil barons.

Synecdoche, New York. Charlie Kaufman takes a shot at directing one of his own scripts. This will be interesting, as all of his scripts are brilliant, but not all of them have translated equally well to the screen.

the river of life flows by, placid and full of old leaves and some fish

CVI haven’t written in a while, mostly because nothing particularly worth telling y’all about has come up. Though at some point, I have to give some thought to whether I might follow my supervisor, Nando, when he goes to Montreal for his sabbatical this fall. A year in la belle province would be pretty cool, but moving to a new city is always such a huge pain in the ass. And plus, I do kinda really dig Vancouver.

The more immediate concern for me right now, though, is working on my PhD thesis proposal. This is a bit of a hoop-jumping exercise: I have to formally write up what I intend to do my thesis on and present it to a committee who will evaluate it and tell me if it’s acceptable or not. I was hoping to already be done by now, but these things have a tendency to take a lot longer that you expect. Frankly, I’d much rather be doing research than writing about the research I plan to do a year from now. On the plus side, once it’s done, I get to call myself a PhD candidate instead of a mere student.

But now… it’s the weekend! And that means it’s time for wild hedonism! I updated my CV! Wanna see?