Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Rewind #26

Ladytron: Velocifero (2008)

For a few months, Ladytron became a sheepish obsession of mine. I didn't want to admit that I was drawn to their music. I used to always dig through the used CDs at the local music stores and I would often come across this album that would cause me to react with only one thought in my head, "I really oughtta buy that CD." I never did, of course, because I'd like to think that I listen to music because of the music and not because of the cover art. That's what I tell myself, anyway. Eventually I found one of their albums whose cover art allowed me no confusion about the need to want it, even though, in the back of my mind, there was always that little insistent voice that reminded me that, not only did these girls rock, but they were sexy too. The surprising part about all of it is that after awhile I really did like the music simply for the music. Their full-bodied-digital-goth-rock-wall-of-sound is loud, it's energetic, it's fun and it's dark. An interesting combination that is uniquely Ladytron. Velocifero stuck in my brain long after I thought it should have left and here we have it, still making tracks, sexy as ever.

Killer Of Sheep: Charles Burnett (1977)

I read about this movie and I thought I'd found a wonderful treasure. Killer Of Sheep was exactly the type of film I'm constantly searching for in the archive of cinematic memory; a beautiful, honest work of art that quietly reveals the nature of our lives. Charles Burnett managed to capture that feeling exactly, with his portrayal of a young family living in Watts during the seventies. With its stark vision of the slaughterhouse where the patriarch works to the ever-so-lonely need for attention in his wife as she waits for him to release the naked dead aura he brings home every day after his shift to the lost days of the kids as they wander the broken neighborhood, ramshackle homes lingering in the rubble of long-forgotten promise. I truly appreciated the time I shared with these people from an era when I was only just perceiving the world around me. So often we watch movies that are a complete waste of time and I'm not only talking about the big budget gas-bags that conglomerate on movie screens by the thousands every weekend. Even small budget films of distinguished pedigree will leave us wondering whether the past 100 minutes was time well spent. Killer Of Sheep was a slow beautiful waltz that was worth every minute.

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