Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Worst Idea

I watched part of the American version of the Office just now. They've tried to exactly replicate the British version, same characters, same stories, different actors. Horrible. Truly an embarassment to American TV...if you've seen the British version, the American version is pathetic.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005


I have a fondness for this country ever since I visited in 2001. It saddened me when I heard of the political upheaval, but of course, it did not surprise me. The most telling aspect of the social condition at the time was driving 45 minutes from the airport to Caracas. During the drive you drove up and around a mountainside road. On the mountainside are thousands of little lights - all the poor people living in shantytowns, essentially. There is no law in those places and apparently a high murder rate. The city of Caracas is one of the most dangerous in South America (which is saying something), but it is also one of the most beautiful (which is also saying something)...up in the mountains, it is surrounded by natural beauty and the wealthy districts are quite cosmospolitan - the upper and upper middle classes benefitted nicely from the oil revenue. But without spreading the wealth, the poor will inevitably be angry and succeptible to commies like Chavez. The latest:

To top it all off, Chavez is now organizing a new army, one loyal to him personally. This is part of his plan create "Bolivarian Circles of Venezuela Frontline Defense for National Democratic Revolution." These are political clubs all over the country, particularly in poor areas, where Chavez has the most support. Chavez expects to have 2.2 million members, who will be the backbone of the “democratic revolution unfolding in Venezuela."

This is never a good sign.
An Excuse

This is just an excuse to go to Israel, right? Sounds, fun, though, doesn't it?
Funny Ass Shit

My favorite part of the onion each week.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005


I really hate writing a treatment for a documentary. I like it less than almost any other form of writing. Other than poetry.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Better Than That!

I'm sure people have better rejection stories than these. How lame and unfunny.
So True

Dan Drezner link, which are all usually worth reading.

Simply put: The Republicans are no longer the party of fiscal responsibility, states rights, and limited government - which by the way, were the 3 of the 4 most appealing aspects to the party (the last being the perception they are tougher on national security).
Master the Basics

I found this on the USC Film school blog about mastering the basics.

I always find these self-improvement, time-management, corpo-stuff rather funny, but I must admit they can be very useful.

My question, however, with respect to filmmaking, are: What are the basics? Can anyone tell me that? Does anyone know? Crossing the line - and that type of shit, is that what they mean? Or finding a worthwhile story to tell? Or a high-concept idea? Or placing the camera in the right place? Or lighting the scene well?

What basics? There isn't an articulation of what the basic elements are.
Cinephile or Cinephilia

Either way, it's an interesting little article.

So the guy gives up getting laid to watch a lot movies, from a long term economic standpoint.

One thing I certainly agree with, watching a film together really isn't a date. I've never quite understood how the two got mixed together.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

I Have No Idea

I can't believe this pilot video. It appears to be a pilot for a Japanese sitcom, about a wannabe gangsta family....they all refer to each other as "nigga" the entire time. I find this very confusing, because it's not quite funny enough to be sarcism, and is almost racist enough to be offense.
Virtual Reality

As uber therapy. This could be huge.
Camcorder Review

I dunno, I'm into this consumer stuff.
FBI, Saudis, 9/11

My questions is this: why did anyone think these rich group of Saudi's, some of whom were related to Bin Laden, were under threat after 9/11? Who, does the FBI suppose, was going to go after them? Some type of lynch mob? The federal government? Isn't the FBI the federal government? This still makes no sense to me.

**Ok, it makes a little more sense after reading the article carefully....the Saudi's felt themselves threatened and chartered their own flight. Still fishy, but I can understand in the wake of such awful events, of simply wanting to go home and feel safe. But still, that's from their perspective, not ours. The question is if they were poor Pakistani's related to some terrorists - there's no frigging way that we would have let them leave the country.

The real question, I guess, is whether we are able to access these people today, if we feel they need to be interviewed or if they were involved. If we can't - then some serious heads should roll in the FBI, I'm talking fired, losing pensions, even possibly locked up.
Odd Column

Religious wars, conversion, the third world adopting it just me or this a weird intellectualizing of crusading?

At a MSA event yesterday a young man spoke about his Muslim NGO going to Indonesia. He said there are a tremendous number of evangelical Christian NGOs out there using the Tsunami as an excuse to convert Muslims. This offended him and many of the Muslims in the room.

My initial reaction, "Big deal, dude, at least they're helping."

I spoke to him afterwards and he was much cooler - these evangelicals, he said, are hurting other Christian NGOs as well, the people in Indonesia are suspicious of foreigners, Christians just interested in helping and not converting and Muslims trying to help as well.

Religious wars, indeed.
Neat Article

The God Racket. Fathi Osman, a liberal Islamicist scholar spoke at USC a couple months ago. He said "We cannot neglect religion as a powerful motivator, because even if we secularize and try to remove it from politics - others will take advantage. The important thing is to be responsible with it."

Interesting thought.
Cock Double

Hasn't been paid for Brown Bunny. I find it both implausible and plausible that V. Gallo did or didn't do this.
This Would Be Great

If Zarqawi were turned in by Iraqis. Amazing possiblity.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Building Steam

More steam building against the Republican party, well articulated on Nate's blog.

The Republicans are in bed with some real loonies.

Although I've never done so, I would vote for a Republican if I didn't think he/she was influenced by the nutto religious bullies in the party...problem is, that's the core of the modern Republican party and in my voting lifetime, they have never been able to separate themselves.

But I am not a swing voter...people a tad bit more conservative than me are. The Dems need to move to the right of me on a few issues to get the libertarian/Goldwater conservatives - the smart voters.

Once that happens, the dynamists (V.Postrel) can wrestle the Democratic party away from the statists (again Postrel terminology) and we'll have the real battle for the future.
Another Republican Bashing

Check it. The dems need to start thinking now about serious policy positions and objectives to do AS A PARTY to get back to both our principles and win elections. We can do both.

1. Are we going to accept Bush's foreign policy? This is the numero uno question. Most dems I know cannot fathom accepting terms like preemption and still think the UN is the principal spreader of liberty around the world, that the Iraq war was misguided, and so forth. Before, we didn't have a lot of incentive to get OVER these things (other than it was smarter position). Now we have TWO major incentives for doing so a) It's working. Iraq is a better place today than 4 years ago. Elections are happening around the region. There is HOPE for democratic change. It still may fall flat in our face, but at the moment, things are looking as good as they have in the past 5 years for sure and pretty much as good as things have been in the Mid-East since the infamous Rabin and Arafat handshake. b) the Republicans are shooting themselves in the foot elsewhere by being big spending jackasses and butting into the Schiavo and Baseball cases. They are weak, vulnerable in swing areas, and ripe for defeat.

But here's the thing with Bush's foreign policy - it is working on a large scale, but vulnerable on a small scale. The entire issue of torture and lack of post-invasion planning, and Bush's clearly irreverent attitude towards it, belies the fact that he can't handle the details and operate things efficiently. I said this before the election and say it now - our position ought to be - Bush was right with Iraq, but isn't the man to carry us through the long hard process of helping Iraq reconstruct. We're the party that will clamp down on the sloppiness and the torture and gain more world wide support.

But further, we DON'T have Bin Laden or Zarqawi or Al Zawahiri. It's tough, I know, but fucking-A, let's (AS a party now) get serious about HOW we're going to get those bastards - not outsource the dirty work to Afghan warlords, we'll keep up the backroom pressure on Pakistan and Afghans, put the pressure on the folks in the countrysides to denounce the Taliban, get some mutha fucking badass spies in there to fuck shit up, James Bond, double 007, shit. I'm talking about kick-ass mothers out there hunting down BL, with other bounty hunters looking for him, fatwas, jihad, button-men, pimps, thugs, whores, priests, children, anyone and anyone whose willing to help us in the short term get those bastards. I'm serious, we're always accussed of being the feminine party and so forth - why are we afraid to admit we'd all love to see these guys dead or alive - PUNISHED for what they've done to us. I'm not talking about what they are planning or what they will do - but they've shed our blood, a lot of it, and for that, we need to retribute in kind. Let's be candid and clear about it, not just to our military, but to our society - this is who we are, what we stand for, and we protect ourselves and our citizens first and foremost.

2. Once we get on the right page with how we're going to handle Foreign Policy now and for the forseeable future, in essense, taking parts of the Bush Doctrine and sticking to it...we can address a whole host of other issues: Spending, estate taxes, medicare, schools...and put forth reasonable, practical proposals that are consistent with trying to extend equal opportunity (not outcome) to as many as possible.

This sounds good. My Iranian friend reports that people in Iran party hard, like underground 'til the morning...

The impact of partying on political change...interesting thesis topic here, seriously.

I think I'm becoming more conservative, but then I read a jackass conservative talking about the difference between liberals and conservatives and I relish the opportunity to be a liberal snob and condescend to his kind. What a douche bag.

There is a comment posted on my blog that connected me to a film I am currently casting. I could not figure out how in the world publicmusings got connected to my breakdown services posting. But I figured it out.

Google this seach term: Greg Johnson USC Blog

Public Musings is the first thing that shows up. Odd. Scary. Cool.
Racist Chinamen

What is so interesting about the post is how obviously wrong such racism is....we've gotten to the point where racism is more embarrassing to the racist than the supposed victim. Do you think this affects Condi at all? Do you think it makes her feel bad about herself? I think not.
A War On Blogs

From Instapundit....

It's a universal law of capitalism: when an industry faces a new and significant threat to its profits and powers it turns to the government for protection. Well, bloggers who write on current events are challenging the mainstream media (MSM), the most politically well-connected industry in America. Watch for the MSM to start using their political influence to burden bloggers.

Two words: Bring it On.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Classes Next Year

USC is both a very cool and very shitty place. The bureaucracy at the school is unbelievable. I spoke with a TA today who wanted to graduate over the summer and he yesterday found out he needed 4 more units - not required classes, but simply units to graduate. The response for defenders of bureaucracy always point to individual responsibility...well, he should've known what was needed to graduate and so forth. I always find this ironic, that the individual is responsible for everything, yet the institution sets up a variety of rules and policies WITHOUT any RESPONSIBILITY or accountability, no face, no explanation, no nuance, no exceptions, no efficient means for checks and balances.

That was a little bit of a tangent, BUT, my point is about classes next year. I spoke with a prof this afternoon about good classes and what I need to do to graduate and so forth. Advanced directing is offered next semester (only in the fall), it is a class taught by our best directing prof and he makes a point to bring in people from the industry to interface with. We make a 15 minute mini-thesis in this class and we get great contacts and great directing instruction. BUT, if I take this class, I want to devote my time to this class and not prioritize thesis prep or god forbid, 546. And it's only 2 units.

I guess my point is - I may be BETTER off not getting 546 because I get a good class for much cheaper...and I might even be better off prioritizing advanced directing over a thesis - either pushing a thesis until later (which puts me here four years...yipes!) - or not doing a thesis at all or doing a documentary thesis where I'm only going to school part time.

It's going to be an issue about how I graduate or if I do graduate.

The other factor is that the 551 class supposedly has a crappy teacher both this summer and next fall. It could be considered a completely useless class.

What an article (can you call it that?) at Winds of Change.

Money quote:

The enmity of the United States of America is not something many states care to arouse these days, and that's good. It means the USA is re-establishing its disastrously-frayed aura of deterrence abroad.

It's a mean and very self-interested world out there, folks, as the news proves every day. There are good guys, and bad guys, and they do not deserve equal treatment. The U.N. is a corrupt joke precisely because it's structurally incapable of grasping that, and one would sooner turn New York's policing over to the Mafia than take the U.N.'s genocide and terror-abetting pretenses of security seriously.

"Read the whole thing."
Did I Link to This

I'm not sure if I linked to this or not already...but Amazon is sponsoring a short film competition.

We should all be submitting.
Right On

Nate has hit it on the nose here...the Republicans are their own worst enemies right now, they've got nearly everything they ever wanted - control of the White House, control of both Houses of Congress, control of the Supreme Court (come on, Sandra Day O'Conner is the swing vote), and now they actually have to govern....and I have trust in their inability to do so.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

For All You Fellas Out There

Just in case.

This is a very interesting topic about developing narratives about real world events. We are CONSTANTLY doing this. It is a brain function nearly all humans possess - the ability to narrativize our surroundings to make sense of a complicated and complex world and to connect series of events. It may be the MOST important thing we do cognitively. Ultimately, our life choices, the entire moral component of our being, is based upon a story we construct about ourselves.

The classic "narrative" example of this, is of course, the autobiography. And we are all our own autobiographers, telling our story to ourselves all the time.

The value and importance of narrative not only make sense of past events, but to influence the future cannot be underestimated. The above linked article addresses the issue of HOW we narrativize. We have certain structures and codes and ways in which we communicate. Common narrative forms are books and movies and television sit coms. Other forms of narrative are documentary movies and news media coverage. The narrative on Iraq is being written. If we relied solely on a news media obsessed with fitting Iraq into the Vietname quagmire narrative, it could very easily have turned into that. At the same time, we could have bought into the Saddam - Al Queda connection narrative and been bamboozled into believing something false, thereby jumping into an unjust and ill-advised war.

This stuff is super interesting and lends importance to my work as a story teller.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Before Sunset

I've been thinking about it and I think this one is better than Before Sunrise. I love these movies, the more I think about them and the more I compare them to other movies dealing with romance.
Films Update - of Films I've Watched Recently


1. Sideways
2. Beneath the Valley of the Ultra-Vixens
3. McCabe and Mrs. Miller
4. Collateral
5. The Incredibles
6. Taxidermy Documentary
7. The Office DVDs
8. The Lodger
9. The Great Escstacy of Woodcarver Steiner
10. Rio Bravo
11. 3:10 To Yuma
12. Straw Dogs
13. Hiroshima Mon'Amour
14. The Ice Storm
15. Walkabout
16. Aguirre, Wrath of God
17. Ratcatcher
18. Before Sunset
19. Film, Film, Film
20. The Fireman's Ball
21. Masculine and Feminine
22. Palm Beach Story
23. Batman Begins (close call - could be very worthwhile, but I'm feeling generous)

Very Worthwhile:

1. Shaun of the Dead
2. Eternal Sunshine
3. Million Dollar Baby
4. Closer
5. Blood Simple
6. Life's Aquatic
7. Spiderman 2
8. Friday Night Lights
9. About Schmidt
10. Sid and Nancy
11. Before Surise
12. The Great Silence
13. A Place in the Sun
14. Blackboard Jungle
15. The Counterfeit Traitor
16. Home from the Hill
17. Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid
18. Salesman
19. George Washington
20. Master and Commander
21. Nashville
22. California Split
23. PillowBook
24. To Live and Die in L.A.
25. Lost Highway
26. Manhunter
27. The Insider
28. La Jetee (for the 4th time)
29. Run Lola Run
30. Cutter and Bone
31. Sherman's March
32. Lawrence of Arabia
33. Broadway Danny Rose
34. Morvern Caller
35. The Lady Eve

Decent Films:

1. Ulzana's Raid
2. The Aviator
3. Team America and more here.
4. Passion of the Christ
5. Bourne Supremacy
6. Fahrenheit 9/11
7. Tetsuo The Iron Man
8. The African Queen
9. Ace in the Hole
10. Kill Bill II
11. Escape from New York
12. Red Dawn
13. I Heart Huckabees
14. In Good Company - actually, this is almost a bad film.
15. Hotel Rwanda - only because of the subject matter is this decent.
16. The Gambler
17. Born into Brothels
18. Junior Bonner
19. Lonesome Dove (TV mini series - great book, great actoring, bad directing)
20. The Jericho Mile (TV movie)
21. Gunner Palace and more comments here.
22. Blow Out
23. Unleashed
24. They All Laughed
25. Sorcerer
26. A Band Apart

Bad Films:

1. Bridget Jones 2
2. Ocean's 12 more comments here.
3. Tadpole
4. Resident Evil: Apocalypse
5. Alfie
6. The Grudge
7. Garden State
8. Scarecrow
9. A Sense of Freedom
10. Hero
11. Playtime
12. Love Actually
13. Teknolust
14. Girls from Ipanena (horrible doc from Tiburon Film Festival)
15. Love Actually
16. Star Wars, Revenge of the Sith

Films I Should Have Liked More

1. Faster, Faster Pussycat, Kill, Kill
2. Toute une nuit

Gemini: (May 21—June 21)
You never thought you'd be the type to have a big family, but upon awakening from your decade-long coma, you'll discover that the asylum doctors have begotten seven children on your defenseless body.

Ahhhh...the World According to Greg
Speaking of Badass

Another Star Wars trailer. I'm not 13. I'm not a Star Wars geek. The last two movies basically sucked. But I'm still into it.
Childhood Fantasy

This sounds vaguely like a childhood fantasy game I used to play with friends as we pretended someone was trying to attack us and we kicked their ass with our own machine guns.

Two words: Badass
More Fun Libertarian/Liberal/Conservative Stuff

Again, a post from Eugene Volokh on the psychology of political ideology. This is interesting stuff.

I won't even summarize, it's worth reading.
Maybe I Should Have Gone to Law School

Cause I do kinda like this stuff on theories of justice.
Why the Republicans Are Wrong

This is a great article that captures the fundamental problem I have with the Republican party - they aren't true conservatives. They aren't principaled. They are ideological bullies, and worse, they are out of synch with most Americans. This has always been my problem with Republicans.

Now I don't really consider myself a conservative, although I have strong libertarian leanings. If I had to classify myself, I'd say I'm a hawkish libertarian liberal. I'd like to think I became hawkish after 9/11, but the truth is, there hasn't been a war in my lifetime by the United States that I haven't supported, including the first Gulf War, the Panama invasion, the Bosnia bombings, and the second Gulf War. I'm guessing I would have opposed Vietnam, but honestly, I wasn't alive yet and have no idea what it was really like to live during that time....I was always taught it was an ill advised war.

What I mean by libertarian liberal:

Liberal, in that I believe one of the fundamental roles of government is to extend opportunities and liberty and freedom to those previously marginalized. Historically, this means supporting the Civil Rights movement, Women's Rights, affirmative action, and so forth. I also support alot of Galbraithian economics, which necessitates market regulation to account for factors that the market neglects. A decent example of such is the cigarette tax, which was not added to punish smoking or tabacco companies (although it inadvertantly did this), but to take into account the full social and medical costs associated with long term affects of smoking.

Libertarian, in that I think the government which governs best, is what governs least. In questionable situations, when issues are sticky and nuanced, I don't think government is in the best position to make decisions. Examples of this are the Schivo case, steriods in baseball, and abortion.

I realize there may be some fundamental disparities between being a liberal libertarian, but in essense I don't trust people to behave justly, given free reign of the market and control over institutions. At the same time, I don't trust government to properly correct individual choices. I can't imagine anyone who would trust's a contradiction. Fun.

Monday, March 21, 2005

A Decade Under the Influence

I was watching the beginning of this documentary on the IFC. Good stuff. Coppola talks about how he would go into talk to a studio executive when he first got started as a filmmaker...he would go in with the attitude that "I know exactly what the audience wants and I know this film will make lots of money." He argued that the method can only work when you first get started making films, once you have a track record, it of course, no longer applies.

There is so much to be learned from these guys, Friedkin, Scorcese, Coppola, thing that I think gets forgotten, is that despite having the reputation of making "personal" films, these guys were out there making genre movies to make a buck. Altman made genre films that subverted the genre....granted, but still, they were genre films versus say, French New Wave films that were interested in showing human experience, memory, etc.
An Islamic Feminist

And her biography, to be drawn upon for the doc pitch.
Love Actually Sucks

I rarely turn off movies. Even the stupid ones, I get roped in and generally can get through. And I heard Love Actually was pretty good. A friend even recommended it to me recently. I've been watching it and had to turn it off. It's utterly horrible. How in the world can you make such a bad movie with so many great actors? I find this movie unwatchable.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Badass Posted by Hello

This editorial reminds me of a student film. It's without a's almost a laundry list of the bad things Bush and company did with the Iraq war and then another laundry list of good things that are happening in the Middle East. My question for the author: what was the point of you writing this?

Leave it to the SF Chronicle for disappointing writing.
How Can One Argue Against This?

Read this little snippit.

I guess you could argue that while the war may have been worth it for the Iraqi's, it has not been good for America. Once you bite that bullet, though, it seems your argument will devolve into supporting dictators and oppressors world wide because it is somehow good for America. Not a strong position, methink.

Friday, March 18, 2005


Arite, finally back in LA, and happy to be home. I think my blogging problems will subside now that I'm back to my normal set up, ie double posts and lost posts.

On the way home I listened to a piece on NPR about the "Death of Environmentalism," a lament about how the environmental movement has more or less become non-existant, due to the unsympathetic White House and lack of focus and leadership within the movement.

I was surprised at this attitude. I think the environmental movement WON because most people consider themselves environmentalists or at least pay lip service to the preservation of the environment. It doesn't makes sense to me that environmentalists set themselves up as a distinct group that needs opposition to seems to me, everyone cares about the environment and it's just a matter of finding practical solutions to recognizable problems.

Why do we animosity to establish existence?

Thursday, March 17, 2005

A Challenge

What's wrong with neoconservatism? I know not many scholars read my blog, but I am truly interested in hearing a reasoned critique of neoconservatism....the name alone seems evoke an image of Darth Vader or other evil forces within the US government, yet I'm sure most people aren't exactly sure what the ideology stands for. I figure most people think neo=hip/new, conservative=bad, so neoconservative must a hip/sleek version of something really bad, ie Darth Vader.

Here is a post from Drezner about Europe fearing neoconservative Paul Wolfowitz being the new head of the World Bank. I would've thought the Europeans would've liked an intellectual American...

Jon Stewart on Wolfowitz last night - "His name remarkably is able to sound both intimidating and Jewy at the same."

The only long term solution to the steriod problem is to make them illegal and enforce the policy.

We can't have this false enforcement anymore, where people look the other way - it creates unfairness within the game and it's a big fat lie that once shattered can't be constructed again. On the other hand, we could simply celebrate steriods and say - fuck yeah, I want to see 600 foot home runs....but I don't think anyone REALLY wants to go down that road with all the negative implications, kids using roids and so forth.

Man, I would've thought the whole shrinking your balls thing with roids would have been deterrent enough. Shows what I know.
Being Mean on Purpose

A little debate on the blogosphere about whether certain crimes are so heinous that the victim deserves to be tortured and pain inflicted upon them before being killed.

The money quote:

I am being perfectly serious, by the way. I like civilization, but some forms of savagery deserve to be met not just with cold, bloodless justice but with the deliberate infliction of pain, with cruel vengeance rather than with supposed humaneness or squeamishness. I think it slights the burning injustice of the murders, and the pain of the families, to react in any other way.

Here's the thing - I can relate to the position, the feeling that someone did something so horrible, simple death isn't enough....BUT, and this is a big BUT, I don't trust any goverment or any bureaucracy or any group to actually pull this off in a legitimate way. There are too many variables that get mixed in the real world, prejustice, differing POVs, etc...I mean, this goes back to the Arafat post - you could find thousands of Americans and Israelis who would have loved to see the man tortured and killed. But come on, that's the worst side of us, no?
The Problem with Conservatives

When conservatives argue passionately, it's hard not to picture them during high school trying the same tactics attempting to convince a girl to let them feel her boobs.

This article talks about the Minneapolis PD's ineptitude because they don't want to "be tough" on black gangs for fear of perpetuating the numbers of blacks in jail.

What they don't mention, that would help their cause, is that while blacks clearly perpetrate crimes in higher rates than other minorities, blacks are also more often the victims of crimes than other minorities.

Perhaps we ought to look at justice as a form of victim rights or retribution as opposed to say, preventative justice...we might be better positioned to examine what is just.
Not Everything is Anti-Semitic

A lot of feverant Israel supporters, methinks, are arguing themselves into a hole, when any acknowledgement of Yasir Arafat or any citing of Palestinian rights or Israeli injustice is immediately rewarded with cries of anti-Semitism. Now, I'm not sure Kofi was wise to put a wreath or Arafat's grave, but to compare Arafat to a Nazi - come on, that's sound a little silly even to me, one who overuses Nazi comparisons.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


Last night I ate dinner with some buddies from high school. Apparently, a guy we all knew from high school, a stoner pacifist who was living in a hotel in San Rafael with his father ended up killing his father and cutting of his balls. I tried looking it up on google to find a news story, but could not. The story is too fucked up to even analyze. Why is it that the people from my high school that I hear about are all sad, sad stories....

1. A girl ends up in Hustler magazine
2. A friend shoots himself
3. A girl disappears on the Golden Gate bridge (she presumably jumped)
4. A guy impregnates a girl, who proceeds to murder the child
5. John Walker Lindh is identitified as the American Taliban
6. A different girl ends up on internet porn sites
7. And now a guy is caught having murdered his father and cutting off his balls.

I mean, at least we could have one big success story to counter-balance these....why do you never hear about this type of crap when you're growing up? All you hear about is, oh Robin Williams graduated from your school, or Pete Carol, blah, blah.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Articles Like This

I'm not saying we shouldn't print articles like this, but if I'm a terrorist without many good ideas, all I need to do is read US newspapers to find and think about creative targets.

I swear to god a master terrorist, like KSM or Zarqawi thinks like a film producer mixed with a news producer, creating stories in their head and making them reality.

This is pretty amazing, and good, too.
Dave Chappelle

I notice I watch a lot more TV when at home. This included the Chappelle show the other night. Funny shit. I remember most a skit mocking the real world with a mostly black cast and one hot white girl and a dorky white guy. The white guy gets asked to leave the house because he's too dangerous.

White guy: But T-Bone, you stabbed my father...and you slept with Katie (white girl).

T-Bone: Correction. Marcus slept with Katie. I just filmed it.

Katie (sitting on Marcus' lap): No, T-Bone, you slept with me also.

T-Bone: Correction. I slept with Katie also.

Chappelle: You best leave the house, or we reserve the right to f*** you up.

The white guy walks out of the house.

Chappelle: Oh, and Bradley (white guy). I slept with Katie, too.

Cut to laughter.

Cut to a Real World style interview with Chappelle

Chappelle: Katie's got some big ole titties.

And that's it. But all day yesterday I did Chappelle impressions while skiing in the worst ski conditions in Tahoe ever.

It doesn't sound ALL that funny, but I can't get it out of my head. It's a toss up to me as to who is funnier - Chris Rock or Dave Chappelle. Rock is smarter, smoother, more political, wiser, more professional. But Chappelle is crazy and just really weird and funny.

Saturday, March 12, 2005


For those who don't think this is badass, you don't agree with me.
508 in Color

For the first time since the existence of USC, one out of the the three 508 class made color films. The transition is underway from Black and White to color. Judy Irola is a big fan. I thought some of the color was done well, a lot of the exteriors, however, were super saturated - really bright greens and reds. I think it may have had to do with limited color timing sessions and so forth. I saw two full classes of 508s and the last one from another class. I'll write down some notes on memorable (for good or for bad) ones.

1. Invective (or something like that) - A massive production for a 508. There were 4 "characters" rushing an all black fraternity, there was a "bad guy" the president of the fraternity, and a whole story line, where they have to give up partying for the frat, a romance that gets neglected, and finally induction. Great hip-hop music, a few funny moments. Overall, a very impressive, entertaining 508. (black and white)

2. Halley's Comet - I have no idea what this person was thinking, but there was literally a script for this film, with about 20-25 lines of dialog in a non-sync sound film. Ridiculous. (color)

3. The Secret Hour - This was an odd one, a horror, ghost story, with some hilarious moments. The star, a kid, looked like a complete doofus and is visited by his ghost sister whom his mother denies exists. Good, scary, music which gave me the chills, and this funny-ass part (unintentional) when the ghost sister turns around (a la the Ring, and other Japanese inspired horror movies) with terrible make-up that a 13 year old would wear for Halloween. This was a fun film to watch. (color)

4. Palimpsest - This will be the color film that people will remember. About 3.5 minutes into the film we've seen 4 shots...1) the opening shot of the title written in cursive on a pad, erased, and written in block letters - this apparently is palimpsest, writing, erasing and writing over 2) a shot of a lady walking past an old radio which talks about the 1920s and the fascists taking over in Italy 3) a shot into the kitchen with the radio foregrounded and a lady starts to make bread. 4) close up on the lady making bread. Perhaps my favorite moment for all the 508s is during this movie when I realize someone is making an entire 5 minute movie, spending 1/2 a semester, on 4 shots of a lady making a loaf of bread. The balls. Or the waste, depending on who you ask. The film is shot extremely well.

Then we realize that the news from the radio is going through time, we hear talk of Ghandi, WWII, Cuban Missle Crisis, all the way up to Sept. 10th. She also ends up putting the bread in the oven, going outside and smoking a cigarette. The last shot, she stares into the camera. Interesting stuff. (color)

The next batch of black and white films were on a whole, very good.

5. Return - very professional film about a man who chooses between saving his wife or a baby. Not my style of movie, but well done.

6. Fly - Audience liked this movie, about a gymnist who hurts herself and recovers with the help of a skeleton like bird, who has also injured itself. I didn't buy into this stupid, fake bird, but for those who did, the movie worked.

7. Prom Shoes - a high school chick flick about a cheerleader who loses her shoes. Pretty banal stuff until she walks into what is supposed to be a big basketball game, but instead it's a prom. The metaphor, which is what she was going for, makes no could almost work as a Lynch-like ellipses, but I'm sure it wasn't what the filmmaker was going for...but the end of this film works well. She meets a guy who plays basketball with her at the prom, but then the guy gets pulled away by another girl and she continues to play basketball at prom in her cheerleading dress.

8. Sisters Lost and Found - This was pretty awesome, a bunch of still long shots of two sisters walking around the desert, having fun, getting angry at each other, getting lost, and then at the end, still being lost, but having found each other. Strong visual storytelling, purposeful framing and believable characters. Solid all around, with a cool ambiguous ending.

9. Motherly - Not so good overall, but a few powerful moments...when a couple with a baby wants to have sex, but are distracted by the baby crying, the dad goes and "handles" the baby, by putting it in the closet (done in a single shot of the door of the bedroom and only using sound). Good moment.

10. Graduation - This movie was pretty nuts. Done by this guy who was my crit studies TA one sememster, he must have transferred into production. It's a meta-movie, about a film student who burns his classmates scripts and watches his neighbors, a sexy girl with a black boyfriend, a young kid with a Clint Eastwood complex...a few zombie-like characters...It's a hard movie to explain, but bottom line, there is a doggy style interracial sex scene interrupted by a zombie father, and saved by a little kid who then gets an erection. Best scene of the whole batch.

Friday, March 11, 2005


A nice little profile on a writer getting his props at the ripe of age of 52 with Million Dollar Baby...earning it the hard way, so the article says.

What I found interesting was how this "strugging" writer was driving a Porshe.
Female Super Hero

Someone at school in the female super hero class ought to write a sophisticated response to this blog post.

There's an article about the Tiburon Film Festival in the Marin IJ. I was interviewed. God, I come across as such a dick head compared to the other guys.

The film: "The Math Tutor"

The filmmaker: Greg Johnson, Tiburon

This film by Johnson, a University of Southern California film school student, tells the story of a Los Angeles math tutor manipulated by the seductive mother of his student.

Q: What is the one image in your film that sticks in your mind?

Johnson: Probably Mrs. Sanchez (the seductive mother) in a towel.

Q: Who would hate your film?

Johnson: Al Qaeda. They wouldn't like the sexual aspects. (he should have deleted the 2nd sentence)

Q: Why film?

Johnson: Because it's accessible. It's a way to communicate that a lot of people respond to.

Q: Why this film?

Johnson: I wanted to explore a banal subject and try to make a comedy out of it.

Q: What's the difference between a film and a movie?

Johnson: To be honest, I think film is a word that pretentious people like to use. (I don't like the wording, I feel like such an asshole)
Jim Morrison's Student Film

I gotta admit, I'm quite curious.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Blogger Problems

Been having a lot of problems with blogger the last couple of days and a bunch of my posts would go up and then I'd get frustrated and forget about it.
Blogger Problems

Been having a lot of problems with blogger the last couple of days and a bunch of my posts would go up and then I'd get frustrated and forget about it.
The Right Idea

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The 9-0

A friend of mine wanted to talk some film business last night. He suggested we meet at the 9-0, right across the street from frat row, for the cheap beers...$2 a pint, he promised. We went. Saw a couple of 507 students, discussed business. Soon the bar started to fill up, cute girls, more cute girls, some unbelievably hot chicks, all started to roll in. By 11pm, it was packed, Harris Ranch-style, hot girls everywhere. Donkey dudes. Lots of beer, a man from Marlbolo giving away free zippo lighters. Girls looking for the dick. Guys staring at boobs. One of the 507 dudes is a big African American guy. Girls mistook him for a football player and mobbed him. He turned down at least 3 drunken underage girls.

Saw some undergrad film students at the bar. One is in the class I SA. She said, "I didn't know grad students come to the 9-0."

Apparently, they don't.

An interesting looking blog...borrowed my name, too.

I love contrarian logic (I've been criticised more for arguing for the sake of arguing nearly more than anything else my entire life) so you might expect me to really like this article.

The thesis: Walmart is a re-distributor of wealth...a modern day Robin Hood with parking. Shareholders (the rich) lose money while customers (the poor) get cheaper goods.

If you want to find the guilty party, look to who has benefitted...

I guess from now on if you are poo-poo Walmart, you're poo-pooing the poor.

One thing you've got to admire about Al Queda is that they're very creative.
Gunner Palace

This documentary tried many of the things I am interested in - the idea of embedding oneself, becoming a type of honorary group member. Despite the potential drawback of becoming an advocate or biased (as many journalists were criticized for during the Iraq war), I think the benefits accumlated through trust show a more honest and interesting side to the subjects. The guy also tried some stylistic things - using a lot of music, freeze frames, and text. What stood out for me most, however, stylistically, was his voice over. His voice was completely without pretense or superficial politics. It was matter of fact, cold, honest, and oftentimes poetic. It reminds me of Werner Herzog.

I'm still trying to figure out this documentary. It appears to have been done by a pair of filmmakers, but it felt like one man. Some of the images are simply amazing - some of the best digital imagery I've seen.

There a lot of music in the film, all performed by the soldiers...a lot of rapping, which took on a greater meaning to me as a mode of expression, especially because rap in America has become so overrun with materialism. These guys have something serious to rap about. And it's pretty cool to watch amatuers expressing themselves on the cheap, kind of reminds me of blogging. Few of the raps or music are full complete songs, the type of thing we expect to hear and be packaged on the radio. They are snippits. The movie is full of snippets. Bits here and there, characters here and there, some reoccurring. Mostly, you don't remember their names. This is the first film I've seen that seems to have a "blogging" sensibility. Unsentimental, hard-nosed, episodic, not a fully formed "narrative," mixing different types of texts - images, Voice over, text on the screen, music. I imagine a lot of documentary people won't like it - they will say "It doesn't take a political position." Thank god, it's about frigging time to see something not completely diluted with a message they want to impart to the audience.

One of the things I felt at the beginning of this film was - man, I expected some blood and guts and death. What does that say about the film? What does that say about me?

George Carlin framed the issue of war in an interesting way - "It's entertainment, folks. Don't kid yourselves, for you, it's a form of entertainment."
Gunner Palace

This documentary tried many of the things I am interested in - the idea of embedding oneself, becoming a type of honorary group member. Despite the potential drawback of becoming an advocate or biased (as many journalists were criticized for during the Iraq war), I think the benefits accumlated through trust show a more honest and interesting side to the subjects. The guy also tried some stylistic things - using a lot of music, freeze frames, and text. What stood out for me most, however, stylistically, was his voice over. His voice was completely without pretense or superficial politics. It was matter of fact, cold, honest, and oftentimes poetic. It reminds me of Werner Herzog.

I'm still trying to figure out this documentary. It appears to have been done by a pair of filmmakers, but it felt like one man. Some of the images are simply amazing - some of the best digital imagery I've seen.

There a lot of music in the film, all performed by the soldiers...a lot of rapping, which took on a greater meaning to me as a mode of expression, especially because rap in America has become so overrun with materialism. These guys have something serious to rap about. And it's pretty cool to watch amatuers expressing themselves on the cheap, kind of reminds me of blogging. Few of the raps or music are full complete songs, the type of thing we expect to hear and be packaged on the radio. They are snippits. The movie is full of snippets. Bits here and there, characters here and there, some reoccurring. Mostly, you don't remember their names. This is the first film I've seen that seems to have a "blogging" sensibility. Unsentimental, hard-nosed, episodic, not a fully formed "narrative," mixing different types of texts - images, Voice over, text on the screen, music. I imagine a lot of documentary people won't like it - they will say "It doesn't take a political position." Thank god, it's about frigging time to see something not completely diluted with a message they want to impart to the audience.

One of the things I felt at the beginning of this film was - man, I expected some blood and guts and death. What does that say about the film? What does that say about me?

George Carlin framed the issue of war in an interesting way - "It's entertainment, folks. Don't kid yourselves, for you, it's a form of entertainment."

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Gunner Palace

Still trying to figure out how much I liked this film. It goes against most everything we're taught at USC, and yet it's more compelling than any documentary I've seen since Fog of War and Salesman. The two best thing are that I think the film was made by a single guy, Michael Tucker....and his voice over, Herzog-like in it's poetic sense. I also found it fascinating how much the soldiers played music or rapped. Very interesting, reminding me of James Jones' From Here to Eternity. I want to write more about this film....

Monday, March 07, 2005

On Bush

The Independent, not exactly your bastion of conservatism.

My favorite quote re: changes in the Arab world

Indubitably, however, even his most grudging domestic opponents and his harshest critics in the region admit that Mr Bush is also in part responsible.

I have a couple of friend who won't come around and even admit this. They are missing out on what's happening...

I sometimes worry that since I voted for Kerry, I might look like the guy who voted George B. McClellan in 1864.

Some tips on being a law professor. Don't they sound familiar to what we are told with respect to filmmaking. Persistence.

While Syria pulls out of the main part of Lebanon, it makes we wonder what we can tangibly offer to demonstrate our happiness for this change. Syria claims ownership of the Golan Heights, currently occupied by Israel. IF, and this is a big IF, there were demonstrations and an attempt to peacefully topple the Assad regime in Syria, I think a gesture by the West is in order. To show our solidarity which such a development, perhaps Israel would consider a de-miltarization of the Golan Heights.

Such a gesture would be unprecedented and tremendously bold and dangerous. The Golan Heights are strategically and militarily important because of their positioning in relation to Israel. My roommate suggests this will never happen.

But these are times when the potential reward is so large and so dramatic, that risk may be worth it. I'm not suggesting lining up Syrian troops on the Golan Heights and unilaterally giving it back to Syria, but de-militarizing it would be a gesture that says, "We can be partners in this," versus constantly trying to get the little protective concessions.

It would build trust.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

More Lebanese Hotties

And I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed and here. Hot chicks do indeed change the way one sees the world.

Goddamn, if I lived in Saudi Arabia and worried about being locked up for talking to chicks, and I was watching these hotties going crazy next door on, it would get me thinking.

Read the exerpt by the Syrian writer. Amazing and troubling.

I recall listening to a radio talk show on a super liberal station during the run-up to the Iraq war. They had callers going on and on about Bush and oil and blah, blah, blah, a bunch of white idiots rallying behind the "Iraqis" (or should I say, Saddam?). At the very end a man calls in, identifying himself as a Syrian, and begins talking about the Baathists in Syria. His voice trembling, he describes his best friend disappearing one night after taking a controversial position on some sort of topic. He and his friend were 19 years old at the time. The man could barely tell the story without crying. The radio host promptly cut him off as it became clear the Syrian man had no trouble with America getting rid of a fellow Baathist in Iraq...out of time he said. Indeed.
Another link for blog paper reference
Notes on Interactive Media

Janet Murray's homepage.

There is, like, very little theory to write on with respect to interactive. I feel very self important trying to write a serious paper on interactive theory. Maybe that will be my topic.

I don't like linking to Salon articles because they require a pass or watching an ad. But I'm always impressed with the quality of information. This article points out to the complexity with the Lebanon issue...posing the question of how the opposition (ie protestors with support from the Western and Arab world) will cooperate with the Shiites, represented in the South by Hizbollah.

Let's hope Israel has the good sense to either keep their mouths shut or make some massively generous concession to Lebanon.

The test for America and Israel, from a moral standpoint, is how we deal with success. Do we chest thump? Do we take advantage? Or do we take the opportunity to help build long-lasting trust, by trying to alleviate some legitimate Arab concerns?
The article of articles on Foreign Policy

Look at the headline for Al Jazeera...more hot Lebanese chicks.

Saturday, March 05, 2005


Can't underestimate the power of news...look what the NY Times is reporting. Who said good news isn't news?
I'd Be Willing to Bet This Is True

Intellectual life in Dallas vs. New York or SF...

Intellectual life at USC film school is non-existant as public form. Only through friends does it exist.

In my directing class last week our teacher (the head of the directing track at school) actually compared the Cultural Revolution to Tommy Chong being arrested.

It was brought up while we discussed Zang Yimou, Chinese filmmaker of Hero, Raise the Red Latern, To Live, who grew up during Cultural Revolution, influencing his films. Our professor went on to say, "under this administration, we are undergoing a type of Cultural Revolution..."

No one said anything for a moment, while I looked around aghast. Finally I raised my hand and said, "I don't see it as a valid comparison - a ten year time period of killing and imprisoning intellectuals and artists versus anything that's currently going on in the United States. I mean, can you name one artist or intellectual who has been locked up for his/her thoughts?"

He nodded his head and said, "Tommy Chong." (with a straight face, mind you) And then he went on to say, "But, yes, it isn't the same, but it's a slippery slope (in so many words.)"

And you wonder why WE (liberals) lost the election.
Big Things

There are big, big things happening the Middle East right now.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Bring It On

Some folks are considering regulating blogging under "campaign contributions," that blogging somehow can be considered an in-kind donation. I'd would LOOOOVE to see them try.
People In the Industry

Someone suggested making a list of people/companies I'd have an interest in working with. This will be ongoing, here's a start:

1. David Chase
2. Michael Mann
3. Richard Linklater
4. Mitchell Hurwitz
5. Larry David
For Democrats Serious About Foreign Policy

There are lessons to be learned by Bush...we just need to hijack what has worked for him and use it, leaving the moralizing and bullying to the Republicans.

It's the power of a simple, consistant message....both OBL and Bush know it. The dems do not...
Jessica Alba

Is a true leader and star to be emulated.
Different Tide

In trying to develop this documentary dealing with Islamicism, I've noticed a trend lately...first the BBC doc with the thesis that the West is way overreacting to the "Islamicist threat" and now the revelation that the liberal Egyptian Coptic was probably killed by a neighbor with the motive of robbery.

Coupled with the Dutch intelligence report on the Van Gogh murder, the liberal Islamicist speaker on USC campus last week and most importantly the events in Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, and Iraq....well, dare I say, things don't seem all that bad - maybe this whole "Islamicist" problem might be working itself out.
Satellite Photos

This link from Like a Colon Cleansing is pretty cool.

UPDATE, from my geography connection:

This was an interesting project done by microsoft, they tried to prove
they could store a terra byte of data and have it accessible on the
web, they knew that images would be the largest and most useful file
so they decided to use these types of images for the project.

Soon it will be movies.
Stranger than Fiction

Real life.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Great Site

For my research on the doc. Also a note on a documentary already done: The powers of nightmares – BBC documentary.
Al Jazeera

Don't know why I don't have a link for it, but we should be reading this source of news.
Jon Stewart

Is a damn funny and smart person. Check out article in the WSJ. I think he may be onto to something....

One point of contention I have with Mr. Stewart, who I utterly respect - he says that had the Bush Admin forwarded the "change in the Middle East" thesis, rather than the WMD thesis, he might have been more prone to go with it from the get-go. Since the beginning, this has been the entire reason I supported the Iraq war, and PLENTY of people, particularly Tom Friedman from the MSM and many bloggers, Instapundit, among others, have all been saying this. This is what I find fascinating about liberals - part of me thinks a lot of not supporting the Iraq war had to do with not doing their homework because they didn't like the teacher. This argument has been out there and liberals systematically ignored it. See my post from Dec 9, 2003.

An excerpt:

...the number one reason the Middle East is in a condition where terrorism thrives, are the autocratic governments. Hussein in Iraq, Assad in Syria, and the Royal Family in Saudi Arabia have consistently lined their pockets with oil revenue for the past 25 years without any regard to the people of their country. A combination of greed (for money and power) combined with ineptitude led these autocrats to fuck over their own people. It has also inspired other autocrats on a lesser scale: Arafat in Palestine, Khadaffi in Libya and autocrats of different stripes: Ayatollahs in Iran, Mushareff in Pakisan, and of course, the Taliban.

These autocrats have consistently supported different terrorist groups: Syria runs Hizbollah, Arafat runs Al Asqu Brigades, Khadaffi had his own terrorists hijacking airplanes in the 70s, the Taliban had Al Queda (although this was a unique relationship because it seems like Al Queda ran the Taliban, rather than the other way around). Al Queda successfully blackmailed the Royal Family. Hamas was a “start up” that eventually got financing by Hussein.

However, the point of the “soft argument” is not that all of these guys are partners, because clearly they are not. They hate anyone who disagrees with them. What seems to occur amongst autocrats, are two things: one, their people are neglected and poor and hopeless and two, they encourage the rise of other autocrats. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that similar abuses of power, views on Israel, views on the West, use of particular tactics—specifically terrorism, all occur in the same region. Nor do I think these views are inherent or historically necessary.

What I think is missing from my argument is taking the next step...that while autocratic governments have a tendancy to support one another, liberal, demcractic governments also tend to support one another....we've seen this in Asia and in Eastern Europe. This is what Wolfowitz and the neocons have been saying all along.

Could I have predicted democractic changes in Lebanon? Of course not. In Syria and Saudi Arabia...not really. But I do know and did know then, the pressure to democratize and liberalize would increase with the removal of Saddam from power.

We basically went to the full court press on defense....and while we couldn't predict what specifically this pressure would disrupt, we knew it would throw the other team into confusion and we'd get some steals and easy lay-ups.
Prediction for Next Year

The oscar will go to this film.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Lebanese Protests

Here are some links to pictures....has anyone else noticed that the chicks are uber hot?

Other links here, here, here.

Something about massive political activism...ummmmm.
Born Into Brothels

Finally got to see this film I've been meaning to check out. It's quite an interesting film from a "making a documentary" standpoint. The first half is quite poor storytelling...the only thing that moves the narrative is interviews and music montage sequences. Then, all of a sudden, the movie takes off - they are at the beach, they are selling their pictures at an auction, they are waxing philosophical, they are trying to get into school, to attend an artist conference in Amsterdam, all of a sudden all these things happen and it's active and fascinating.

I do find it hard to believe this won best documentary, but there are some great moments and two great characters - the talented kid and the only child girl.

It does make you wonder - does anything we do matter? Typical American nihilism...
What Do You Care About More?

Progress in the middle east or bashing bush? It is undeniable that things in the middle east are looking up (two steps forward, one step back)...granted, this may be short lived....but it also may be long lived. The great example, via the link, is the fall of the Soviet Union. It started by democratic movements in "obvious" countries, Poland and Hungary, and quickly spread to the fall of the USSR.

Will the LEFT acknowledge this is a direct result of our Iraq policy? Will they deny that these are substantive changes?

Right now, I bet most "liberals" (=LEFT) don't even read this news...or care all that much...because it's anger towards Bush which the LEFT care about, not progress for people in the middle east.

Quick update: I use the term LEFT to distinguish between political liberals (NOT the JS Mill liberal), whom I believe share the fundamental belief that the role of government is to extend liberty and opportunity to people...and the LEFT, which is mostly concerned with removing Bush from power and in a broader sense, counter-balancing American power - economic, military, etc.

Another update: What then is a political liberal versus a political conservative...well, a conservative thinks the role of government is to protect the status quo and private property...the idea being "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." A great example is affirmative action...liberals think it ought to be law to offer opportunities to previously disadvantaged groups. Conservatives think it is the role of private groups to decide whether they want to offer opportunities to disadvantaged groups. They argue, government alone, cannot solve the problem of equal opportunity, that it is much more efficient and substantive for the private sector to acknowledge equality of opportunity. Government interference in such matters, they argue, merely creates a layer of bureaucracy and imposes a specific set of values to an already sticky issue.

Unbelievable film. This may be the most honest portrayal of children I've ever seen. Amazing. The girl who played the younger sister is one of the most charming actresses I've seen in a long, long time. Something about her energy and attitude, so powerful in this pre-sexual way. It's odd. In real lifem and especially in film, we so often see women's power deriven from sex...or the allure of sex or the suggestion of sex or in the opposition to sex. This sexual marker seems to be the jumping off point so often, it was refreshing to watch a child, in a pre-sexual state, with control of her surroundings, a point of view, a sense of humor, a personal moral code (she rats out her brother to her father for trying the beer and picking on her, but NOT for spitting in the beer).

Her character, of course, contrasts sharply with the older (teenage) female characters in the film, one who is systematically gang-fucked, the other who sluts herself up to presumably go see an older man (although we never see this happen). These women, having just discovered their sexuality, negotiate their way through the world via sex.

And of course, the wives/mothers have become wife laments her drunken husband showing his love for her only after several pints. All the mothers are hysterical at some point in the film, fearing constantly for their children's safety - sometimes warrented, sometimes not - but always unsexual. Even in the happiest moment, the moment where the mother may be re-sexualized after her husband has been crowned a local hero and the family is "down to party," she must resort to dancing with her children, while the husband goes to the pub to flirt with a younger, desparate woman and get picked on by young thugs.

Sadly, the young, pre-sexual actress is also doomed by her own innocence...her pov is an illusion - she proudly whispers to others around her as her father receives an award, "My father is a hero," as he sits in line with young children receiving phony,feel-good awards, an award that will give him an excuse to get drunk again that evening. She still looks up to her deadbeat dad. Soon, the day will come when she, like her brother, sees the dad for what he is - a piece of shit - and will, like her brother, find solace in loving someone else. Maybe, if she's lucky, even get to urinate in front of him.

She has yet to feel the sting of betrayal, and lovingly sneaks into bed with her mother at one point in the film, and her brother at another point in the film, and puts her arm around them. Each one of them move her arm away, annoyed, but she insists...putting her arm around them again. Each of them give in, because they need to.