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Monthly Archives: June 2015

Music videos are an interesting medium for expression, since they incorporate several different kinds of art and often even contain a narrative that runs the span of 2-6 minutes. I began my music video scavenging hobby the moment highspeed internet was accessible to me—keeping in mind that I grew up in the middle of the rural countryside surrounded by corn, so this wasn’t as soon as it was for most. Anyway, it is a personal social goal of mine to find people willing to watch music videos with me and then join me as we sit around experiencing collective appreciation toward them. This is very lame of me, but luckily, there is the internet, where all the lame goes.

I would like to share some interesting music videos that I’ve come across over the years, all ranging in popularity, genre and style. A good source and interesting video website in general is The Tripatorium, which has music, shorts and straight up art tomfoolery for days. If you’re in for some visual stimulation I recommend heading there—after, of course, you check out the music videos I suggest to you.


Jason Forrest, ‘War Photographer,’ animated by Joel Trussel

An instrumental track, where animated vikings battle each other and then there’s some orgiastic finale which appears to involve wizards and a marching band.

Oren Lavie, ‘Her Morning Elegance’

What happens to the woman in this video actually happened to me this morning while I was in bed. It was a lot less romantic looking, however. The song is pretty too, I guess.

Das Racist, ‘Michael Jackson,’ directed by Weird Days

Something I really strive for in life is to be the man wearing flaming aviators and a fedora chilling at the table behind everyone. I want to embody that. Das Racist is always fun, and this is my favorite video of theirs.

The Shoes, ‘Time to Dance,’ directed by Daniel Wolfe

When I watched the movie Nightcrawler in theaters, I wasn’t surprised by Jake Gyllenhaal’s creepy performance as an ambitious adult homicidal sociopath. I wasn’t surprised because I had seen this music video, which stars a murderous Jake Gyllenhaal in a fencing suit, and might as well be an atmospheric preface to that movie. The video’s pretty fucking vicious. The song is really good, too.

Dizzee Rascal, ‘Bassline Junkie’

This music video is so entertaining. I don’t really know how I feel about Dizzee Rascal, but I love this video and I love that wormy looking blonde disciple. The whole thing just makes me laugh, and I love how the organ at the end has the majority of the keys covered in caution tape.

Autoerotique, ‘Asphyxiation’ 

The top comment on this video is “this porn got nice music,” and…. yup.

Stuck in the Sound, ‘Let’s Go,’ Alexis Beaumont & Rémi Godin

Achieving your lifelong dream will cause you to enter a ridiculous Twilight Zone scenario. Good to know.

DyE, ‘Fantasy’

Everyone I’ve shown this music video to has gotten mad at me. That’s all I’m going to preface this one with.


Well, that’s enough for now. I hope you’re emotionally damaged and scarred, and I’ll share more at a later time.

 

What are you doing here? Oh wait, yes, now I remember. I have decided to speak with Twitter user Post-Culture Review, @PostCultRev, as part of the ongoing project Bec Interviews Twitter Users You May or May Not Have Heard OfMy goal here is to give creative people an outlet to write something that others will read in a venue other than Twitter, share whatever they want about themselves—ranging from serious to silly—and to keep myself entertained for a small period of time while I write these things. Also, I have an impeccable taste in human beings, as you may have noticed. I’ve taken up the hobby of collecting cool people, and it would be wrong of me not to share my findings with the world. [Disclaimer: Interviewees not subject for kidnapping]

This impeccable taste is what initially drew me to PCR, back in my early days of Twitter when I was fresh and corruptible. The man is a fantastic writer, despite the channeling of evil spirits that results in reading his stories. I still await reimbursement for my costly exorcism bills. I used to have his zines displayed in my bathroom, as part of a magazine rack, so that guests could read his works while they worked on their movements, but this resulted in… too many messes… when my guests inevitably snapped from the exposure to eldritch realms and peering into the abyss, scrawling threatening messages all over my bathroom walls using the only material on hand (and boy, was it on hand). Not everyone has the mental fortitude to handle the abominations underneath life’s surface, you know.

Now his zines are in the dining room, in a rack with copies of the revival of my old literary journal, printed by someone who has a much bigger budget than I ever did. I’ve been hoping that the shaky work of undergraduates would act as a buffer between his insanity and the real world, but the cryptic messages etched into my hardwood floor seem to suggest otherwise.

Post-Culture Review’s zine can be received by DMing him on the interwebs, and his podcast is located here for all the world to hear.

Pictured: The star of your next nightmare


 

Why do you have an account on Twitter dot com?

I started it to promote my zine, which is why it’s named after my zine. It has since evolved into a kind of literary laboratory for me to explore my obsessions or, alternately, my brain toilet.

Describe yourself in two words (no, wait, three words).

Albino cave potato

What is a writing project that you are currently working on?

I’m currently writing a short novel about a man on a deserted island who finds a machine that makes perfect clones of him. The clones eventually take over the island, which runs out of food as the society grows too large for the ecology to maintain them. The clone themselves then eat other clones to survive. This is an actual thing I’m doing because I’m an adult.

Drop a truth bomb, right here, right now.

You can sing “I Like Big Butts” to the tune of “Greensleeves” and now you’ll never stop doing this.

What did you have for breakfast?

Scrambled eggs, toast, coffee and free-range morning anxiety.

What is something that you hate doing?

My job that earns us the money that supports my family.

Who is your favorite account on Twitter dot com?

Your account is always a pleasure and you were one of the first people I communicated with regularly. If I had to pick it would be @mountennui who I find to be a constant source of inspiration. Reading his work was when I first started to read twitter as its own kind of literature. Some other favorites include @timescanner, @studiesincrap, @behindyourback, @thepatanoiac and dozens of others I’m certainly forgetting  and whom ‘m dead certain will hate me forever now because I didn’t mention them…

What is your spirit animal, and why?

Bacteria, because no one ever thinks of them until billions of them are digesting you.

What is a topic that you feel that you know a lot about, that you consider yourself an expert on?

Nothing. Every time I think I have a grasp on something I end up being humbled and awed by the awesome majesty of the universe and its infinite possibilities. It’s very frustrating.

What do you believe to be the scariest monster?

Giant squids, because they hate us and their civilization is so much more advanced and cruel than ours.

What is your favorite book?

Can’t pick one. Top ten:

“60 Stories” by Donald Barthelme

“Labyrinths” by Jorge Luis Borges

“The Master and Margarita” by Mikhail Bulgakov

“We Have Always Lived in the Castle” by Shirley Jackson

“At Swim-Two-Birds” By Flann O’Brien

“Invisible Cities” by Italo Calvino

“Woman in the Dunes” by Kobo Abe

“The Lathe of Heaven” by Ursela K LeGuin

“Sometimes a Great Notion” by Ken Kesey

“The Sot-Weed Factor” by John Barth

What is a life lesson you feel you have learned thus far?

Our lives are built out of whatever narratives we tell ourselves about what is going on. It’s all a story. Changing the story isn’t going to necessarily change your life, but recognizing it is a story, and other people have their stories, and that culture and history are collections of these stories, goes a long way to coming to a better understanding of what we’re all up to.

When you burst through your front door in the morning, ready to get to work, what theme song is playing while you walk purposefully into your day?

“Primitive” by the Groupies

How does the internet work?

I scream at some bats and they fly away and form words in the night sky.

If you were a baked good, what baked good would you be?

A croissant, because I’m a lot of work to put together and I leave crumbs all over the goddamned place.

If we fought crime together, what sort of crime would we fight?

We’d free people from the tyranny of their shitty, unfulfilling jobs like some sort of freedom fighters.

In the lab in the corner of the building
most under the sun when the sun was up
Leah and I stood over a peachy orange
little fetal baby piglet, forked feet up,
on the marble countertop.

Apron, goggles, scalpel, bloodless
slice of rubber unborn skin meant
to teach anatomy to fifteen year olds
turning sixteen, fetal pig lab project
seventeen baby pigs out of a box
on the marble countertop.

“Not blood, it’s formaldehyde,”
Ms Halczak says as we shriek at
brown fluid streaming out of the slit
in the corpse pig’s white stomach
pooling in the corners of the pan
and smelling like piss and shit
all mixed and shoved up our noses.
Our pig had more formaldehyde than
the others’, brown syrup flowed until
we couldn’t see a liver or intestines
or anything. “Go look at Kyle’s,” says
Ms Halczak, seeing our soupy
brown pig in a pan. We needed
to make a diagram.

Kyle lost his mother four years ago,
his partner was absent, he hacked
away at the baby pig skull ‘til it popped
off like a soda bottle cap and
there was the round pee-yellow brain,
he pointed the scalpel down, we said,
“No!” and laughed but frowned
as he squished up the brain, glooping
over like runny mashed potatoes.

The whole school smelled like fetal
piglet for a few days, to me, anyway,
and a month later at a baseball game
Leah said, “Do you smell that?”
It was fetal pig above the diamond.

Now I’m looking out the window
on a blue Spring day, almost ten years past,
memories draped in layers over old ones,
and I smell it as if it’s outside

that fetal pig,
formaldehyde.

I’ve just finished up a small stage of my life, and now I’m moving on to something new and better and distant. I’m hoping that I can take all the trials and tribulations of the past four years and learn from everything, take it all with me so that I can make myself a stronger and better person. The best version of myself.

After everything that has happened, I’ve finally earned myself some time off, some days to myself. I can collect everything that I am and everything that I own and step forward. I can make that step as quick or as slow as I need it to be. There’s a lot I’m leaving behind, but what I take with me through experience is of even greater value.

Things are going to be different. I’m going to give myself the best vacation I can manage right now, the first real vacation I’ve had in a very long time. I definitely deserve it. And then, with all the strength I’ve built up, I’ll find success.

“Let’s just stop and ask her for directions. It’ll be fine!”

Not everyone enjoys the found footage genre, but it’s one of my favorites and I’ve been trying to watch them all. The genre definitely has its annoying tropes—Shaky cam! Glitchy footage! Where did the tape come from anyway?—though as long as you don’t find those absolutely unbearable, it’s better to embrace them as a means to an end. Horror movies don’t really work without tropes that glue shit together. There’s a lot of things that need to be ignored in order for certain plots to unfold, most notably common sense. Found footage films often require the viewer to grant more allowances, and I can understand why that would be a problem for some people, particularly those that suck at suspending their disbelief. I think it’s the creativity often employed in making found footage somehow work that draws me to these movies.

The film Grave Encounters (2011) is a popular mention and a personal favorite within the genre. The reasons I enjoy the movie so much are 1) the concept is simple but fun, and 2) the characters are for the most part so unlikable that it’s entertaining to watch them gradually lose their minds. Unlikable characters sound like a bad thing, but when you put them in a certain setting then some fun can result, and setting is a strongpoint in this movie. I’m going to go so far as to say that there is even a theme (oh god, my English teacher is showing). The characters are unimpressed with the paranormal activity they witness near the beginning, and they try to find bigger and better scares for their television show. They yell into the darkness and huff and complain. Appreciate what you get! Don’t ask for too much! Because they all certainly get more.

The plot of the film involves a paranormal reality show crew exploring an abandoned hospital (in reality, the Riverview Hospital, a really beautiful building). The host is Lance Preston, a whiny douche bag, who is accompanied by a faux psychic who is equally as whiny, a tiny whiny woman who is an occult specialist, a derpy surveillance guy, and then the only reasonable person in the whole group, cameraman T.C. This leaves us with a group of pretty aggravating people and one sensible person who needs to be there because we need to feel bad for somebody. This is the type of horror movie that operates on the idea that the viewer is going to want horrible things to happen to some of these people—they deserve it for whatever reason—and they will have to face the consequences for the mistakes they make, the mistakes that are causing you to scream at your television, “What are you doing? Don’t do that!”

The biggest “Don’t Do That” being that they lock themselves inside the vast haunted mental asylum. Don’t do that! And don’t trust the suspiciously clueless Kenny the Caretaker with the keys!

The whole affair starts off with a rather lame preface where a guy tells the viewer that they received a tape in the mail, and what you are about to watch are the contents of that tape. Thanks, demonic entities, for editing the footage! It’s amazing what ghosts can do with technology nowadays.

Once the crew is locked in, there are shots of grainy greenish dark camera footage as they film various spots throughout the hospital, looking for paranormal signs. They are seeking something out, and we wait for them to find it. When they finally breach the point of no return through their own stupidity, despite faking competence during the ghost hunt, the crew can’t even handle the tiniest unexplained thing. When things do get real, the film becomes similar to The Blair Witch Project in that there are a lot of arguments, and people arguing over what to do.

The twist is surprisingly unsettling in its simplicity, and the ensuing chaos produces a lot of good jump scares. The deaths in this movie are not great, the ending draws itself out unnecessarily, and the surveillance guy’s craziness is too much, but when it comes to how scary and unnerving I find the movie, I am very content with how I felt throughout. The setting in the movie makes a huge difference, because the building is really just perfect for a haunting, and scenic to boot. The overall aesthetic and atmosphere make the contents work very well for their purposes. I wish the movie hadn’t thrown away its “less is more” card at the end, but this is still one of the most enjoyable horror movies that I’ve yet seen.

I don’t really believe that there is such a thing as a horror movie masterpiece, because I haven’t yet watched a horror movie that didn’t have obvious flaws. I really only ever want to know, will it make me nervous, and scared, or jumpy? Will I not be incredibly angry at the end? Perhaps my expectations are low, but you have to look at a genre for what it is, and horror is not drama. When it comes to my litmus test, Grave Encounters passes.

I have heard through the grapevine (that grapevine being DreadIt) that when it comes to Asian horror flicks, the 2004 original Thai version of Shutter is incredibly scary. I am always eager and willing to watch Eastern horror for the reason that they often don’t focus so much on the slash and kill aspect, but rely heavily on disturbing imagery and psychological dread (excluding, of course, those fantastic Korean revenge films which are amazing in entirely different ways). The deaths are often more creative and strange, and I want strange when I watch a horror movie. Strangeness in itself can be pretty horrifying, when done right.

A new Instagram feature: Auto Ghost!

Unfortunately for me, I saw the 2008 American version of Shutter in theaters. While The Ring is arguably of equivalent quality to Ringu, and The Grudge is almost as good as Ju-On, the American version of Shutter (same name) stars Joshua Jackson of Dawson’s Creek fame and it is just absolute garbage. The plot is the same however, which means that going into the good version I already knew exactly what was going to happen. The end reveal is much better executed in the Thai film, so I feel as if I lost some of the unnerving jolt of it by already expecting it. The image was already in my head, so seeing the image lost some of its impact.

The film is very along the same lines as Ringu and Ju-On, meaning pale girl with long black hair creeping around and ruining everyone’s day, but despite focusing on this same trope, the scares do work. There are two particular images that are extremely unsettling. The first is a jump scare, an unexpected movement in a photograph, that is startling because it has you focusing closely on a small segment of the photo before the movement occurs. The second comes from a series of photographs, much later in the film, and the movement involved in this one has quite a creepy look that is just fun to watch.

The scares and imagery, then: fabulous.

The plot, however, has some strange holes.

The one thing that left me confused and distracted for a large portion of the movie involves the car accident that occurs at the beginning of the movie. The lead male Tun and his girlfriend Jane are drunk driving and hit a woman, and when weird things start happening, Jane believes they are being haunted by the woman they accidentally murdered. Things are not this simple, however, because there is another woman who committed suicide, and that whole story is the majority of the movie’s focus. So, what’s with the hit and run earlier? The second woman had already committed suicide by the time of the accident, so did they hit this woman’s ghost? I believe this event may have sparked Jane’s discovery of the Big Horrible Scene that occurs later in the film, but that’s my one theory. If anyone else has any other ideas about these seemingly two separate deaths, then I would love to hear them.

Shutter is a good horror movie and it makes you jump. Those into more hardcore horror may be unimpressed, but a fan of ghosts and the supernatural will surely find themselves scared.

To be safe, as a general rule of thumb, I suggest watching the original before the American version, when it comes to any movie. Even if the remake turns out to be good, at least you’ll go into the original blind just in case it’s not.

Welcome to another episode of Bec Interviews Twitter Users You May or May Not Have Heard Of, a thing that I’ve decided to do simply because I enjoy other human beings, specifically ones I have pre-selected. Today’s spotlight is on Ruben Ferdinand, known as @urbanfriendden on the Twitter web area. People may follow Ruben for his jokes, stories, or face, but I do it for all three. The princess may be in another castle, but Ruben knows about some other, better castle that has two dragon princesses, a white mage, and a cache of hyper potions that will keep you going all night long. He’s the magic anime noir guru captain that appears in the last dungeon with all four crystals, sending you back into the fields to grind because you are simply no match without some serious stats. Legend has it that once his limit break gauge filled up all the way and he became anime. Yes, the anthropomorphic embodiment of the very essential concept of anime. Impressive, I know.

To read more of his writing, click here, though you might want to have learned Esuna beforehand. In which case, back to the overworld with you!

Pictured: Anime.


Why do you have an account on Twitter dot com?

I think I first joined Twitter JUST to follow wolfpupy and, while they were still around, UtilityLimb. I think I was like 17 when I started posting under my first moniker, ‘ruben_twatter’ – which, in bloodshot hindsight, was a TERRIBLE name. I kind of immediately went into jokemode but being the wee lad of the praerie I was back then no one really cared. I remember being so excited when I hit 200 followers, while now I flourish my silver goblet as a patrician would and spill wine while also demanding more wine (the wine is Twitter followers). Why I still am on Twitter NOW is because my ebooks account needs more source material. He is a better tweeter than I am. (Also i love my friends)

Describe yourself in two words (no, wait, three words).

Frogs? Cool. (Alright!)

What is the greatest video game of all time?

You lockpick the entrance to the arcade hall with the grace of a master thief wearing a catsuit of their own volition. It is a time where this is considered an illegal act. (Wearing a catsuit while doing crimes; no one cares about video games.) With a fierce, saucy strut you move towards the glowing game cabinet in the exact centre of the building, other cabinets arranged in a circular pattern around it, as if afraid. You step up on the platform which consists of four pressure plates with arrows all pointing down. The screen lights up: a disastrous blend of all colours including two secret ones. It tells you “50c”, which is short for “50 Sea”. That is clearly wrong. There are only seven seas but you can find it in your heart to forgive the cabinet. You check your pockets of your pants for spare change… Drat!! Fake pockets, the despair of civilisation. Luckily, you had a fifty-cent coin hidden underneath your tongue. You insert the coin into the narrow slot. Suddenly, the screen bellows with the heavily-modulated voice of your dad “DO IT NOW.” With great immediacy you drop down to place your two legs and two arms on each pressure plate. A trapdoor opens and you plunge into the deepest darkest hole you’ve ever fallen in and you consider yourself quite the connoisseur. The screen flashes “CONGRATULATION. WELCOME TO HELL!”

Drop a truth bomb, right here, right now.

NIHILISM IS A REALLY OBTUSE WAY TO DISTANCE YOURSELF OF ALL MORAL RESPONSIBILITIES

What did you have for breakfast?

A single egg. In the science place we refer to it as an ‘oviform’. It was a pure, uncorrupted delicacy.

Who is your favorite account on Twitter dot com?

There’s so many answers I have for this so I’m just gonna list two people who I hold very dear: @mammonmachine because Aevee is so cool and I look up to her a lot (go read ZEAL!!); @bombsfall because Scott has taught me so much in the short while we’ve known each other and he’s incredibly nice; @urbanfriendden, because Ruben is so cool and sexy mMmmm.

(Your absence from this threefold list doesn’t mean I don’t care for you it just means I’m too shy to tell you how I really feel)

What is your spirit animal, and why?

A mouse, because I am a big fan of Redwall. One day I hope to be very little and a master swordsman.

What is a topic that you feel that you know a lot about, that you consider yourself an expert on?

You’d think history since I studied the damn thing. But no, the answer is video game music and sound effects.

What is scarier, the ocean or outer space?

It’s kind of weird that both exist in this ambivalent semiotic space wherein there is beauty but also terror. Both are immeasurably gorgeous in a poetic sense (a starry night sky, the moon over an ocean, sexy space mercenaries), but they’re also everyone’s worst fears. Space makes people feel small and insignificant while the ocean is probably filled with fish that are also chainsaws? Fucked up imo. Anyway I choose ocean because this one time I had a bad ocean fishing experience.

Is this a rhetorical question?

You can be whatever you want to be, buddy.

What is an issue that you feel very passionate about?

Creative work as an occupation! Like, so many people are reluctant to pay artists and writers to basically do their jobs. It makes me want to give them a noogie until a merciless sun sheds some light into that thick skull of theirs 😡

GIVE THEM YOUR MONEEYYY

When you burst through your front door in the morning, ready to get to work, what theme song is playing while you walk purposefully into your day?

I have a megamix on my phone that’s every grunt of pain from every Silent Hill protagonist from 1 – 4 + Shattered Memories combined. I don’t listen to that, though. I listen to the soundtrack to Katamary Damacy!

How does the internet work?

The internet is a quiet sort… Please be quiet and gentle so it may do its job with a tender delight… Hear it thrumming softly… Oh it loves you so much…

If you were a baked good, what baked good would you be?

I would be poffertjes, sprinkled with generous powdered sugar. Google that for a good time.

Rebecca Heck Yea: Kiss, marry, or kill?

Kill by kiss
SheldUnbreakable

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Veronica Magenta Nero

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We provide reviews and recommendations for all things horror. We are particularly fond of 80s, foreign, independent, cult and B horror movies. Please use the menu on the top left of the screen to view our archives or to learn more about us.

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Arbiters of Taste - Movie Reviews and More.

NEW DOMAIN NULLSHITHEAD.COM

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to move with love, to move in leaps.

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food for the dead

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Heℓℓo! Let’s write something awesome.