Skyfall – The death of Superman

Unlike everyone who contributed to Skyfall rise to the top of the weekends box office charts, I don’t remember much of what happened. It was a late show, with the day’s activity being lodged into distant memory. Shamefully, most of the movie was committed to memory as a collection of slides and anecdotes, for this blogger nodded off repeatedly during the weekends biggest box office smash. 
 
Initially, I felt underwhelmed. Bond has always been billed as a big action movie with incredulous scenes dedicated to the foremost international man of mystery. It felt slow and was void of big action sequences that would thrust the audience to the edge of their seat (the intro did manage this to such an extraordinary affect, as the audience would then be quelled by Adele’s ‘Skyfall’). Feeling the movie was unfit to receive such dissidence (especially since I nodded off towards the climax), I turned to people smarter and more informed than I to offer an understanding Skyfall, which lead me to Zach Baron’s take on Bond: http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8607205/skyfall-humanizing-james-bond.
 
My initial problem with Skyfall (as with Casino Royale) is that I expected a Bond film like all other Bond films, but, as Zach points out, we no longer live in an age where previous Bond films accurately reflect our contemporary existence. Daniel Craig is a very stripped down, ‘humanized’ version of Bond. He’s not flashy, lacks ‘exploding pens’ and the arm candy that hyper-sexualized old Bond. He is a wreck of a human being, trying to find himself and put meaning to things. He engages in near death-defying stunts and random encounters to fill a void left by the absence of his job.The film portrays Bond, who outside of being the world’s foremost spy, struggles with self-actualization like most people (Bond is a tool, a very dangerous tool at that).
 
In three films Craig has embodied this new Bond, a magnificent human specimen with life coping issues. Bardem’s villain however embodies old Bond. Treated as Mommy’s prized possession. He was the world’s greatest spy, an international man of mystery rivalled by no other; he was the Dos Equis man. He symbolizes everything we want from Bond and puts himself in direct contradiction to new Bond. How these opposing characters deal with the movies’ main overarching theme, betrayal, demonstrates how far new Bond has strayed from his flamboyant beginnings. Over-sensationlized, Bardem’s villain is unable to cope with Mommy’s betrayal. His reality did not fit this possibility, forcing him to behave irradically and bring himself to the brink of madness, the only way he can console himself. He is a man with no sense of self, his foundation is flawed, a man with nothing left but the shattered remains of an unsustainable reality.
 
New Bond is the new “Superman”, he is self-aware and better able to cope with the reality of his betrayal. His return demonstrates his understanding of the rules of engagement, he is a spy and he should expect no less. His self-awareness allows him to survive the betrayal and ultimately return. This sets him in stark contradiction of Bardem’s villain, and the old “Superman”
 
Gone are the sensational days characterised by the industrial and social boom 50’s and 60’s, here are the times where being Bond is not filled with glamour and women. Connery’s Bond (and Bardem’s villain) lived in a world where being “Superman” meant the need to purport a lifestyle similar to that of the social climate; he is unrelateable to our current societal context. New Bond, today’s ‘Superman’, is a man who understands struggle and pain, a man who understands and has felt betrayal.  His existence and perseverance is a by-product of society around him. New Bond lives in a world of post-Cold War uncertainty, weakened economies, perpetual war, terrorism, religious fanaticism and identity in a hyper globalization war (it is not to say these conditions did not previously exist, however access to information has made these issues more salient in our day to day lives). Bond is a combatant who seeks to demonstrate that he is ‘Superman’, that he is the Bond that this world needs.
 
 Unfortunately, this transformation of Bond was not made aware during the movie due to constant head nodding. Furthermore, I betrayed this Bond. I remember the Bond of your, non-stop incredulous action and romantic flings; he made the impossible seem possible (like the island of Manhattan being a prison by 1988). New Bond is pragmatic and better understands his role as the world’s foremost spy.He is not a reflection of what we want of society, but rather where we are as one.

 

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Vampires of Euro ’12

At Euro 12, there exist those who live off the misery of others.  Those that live in theshadows, omnipresent, unrelenting and void of remorse. They are quick to dispossess, quick to counter and quick to strike. This is the story of those who stalk the pitches of Poland-Ukraine.

GK – Buffon
D – Tymoshchuk
D – Lescott
D – Ramos
CDM – Diarra
CDM – Jiracek
CDM – Pirlo
LAM – Ribery
RAM – Robben
ST – Balotelli
ST – Ibrahimovic

about: my tattoo

my appreciation for the art form started on a trip to new york city years ago. i couldn’t help but remark those around clothed in tattoos, existing as an expression of fashion, art and in particular themselves. no matter where i went, there they were: small, large, sleeves, full colour, black; shattering my traditionally held belief that this was not art but a representation of malfeasance. no longer did i fear them, i was intrigued and drawn.

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politics: kazakhstan adopts borat anthem

The wild success of “Borat” hasn’t helped his country’s public image, Mr. Kelimbetov said. Just last month the parody anthem from the Borat movie, which commends for its high-quality potassium exports and having the second cleanest prostitutes in the region was played, in error, at the Amir of Kuwait International Shooting Grand Prix at which Kazakh athletes participated.

The mix-up was apparently the result of the wrong song being downloaded from the Internet. When the Kazakh athletes complained, the ceremony was re-staged. But the incident highlighted how Kazakhstan still finds itself victim to parody.

full article via globe and mail

head-to-head: luck-to-rgiii

this post is based on an actual email chain.

señor:

Did you know:

Track

In track, he (rgiii) broke state records for the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdles. He ran the 110-meter hurdles in 13.55 seconds, and the 300-meter hurdles in 35.33 seconds. The 300-hurdles time was one-hundredth of a second short of breaking the national high school record. He was also a gold medalist in the 110 and 400-meter hurdles on the AAU track and field circuit. He sprinted 13.46 in the 110-meter hurdles and 49.56 in the 400-meter hurdles as a junior in high school. In 2007, as a junior, he was rated the No. 1 high school 400-meter immediate hurdler in the country, and was tied at No. 1 for the 110-meter sprint hurdler in the nation. Also as a junior, he received the Gatorade Texas Boys Track and Field Athlete of the Year award.[7] And he was named to USA Today′s 2007 All-USA Track and Field team.[8] (from wikipedia)

junior:

I knew that he was a track guy and that he did very well in it growing up…. But this is absurd.  Something tells me that the other top qb prospect (who is also a tall cracker) doesn’t quite possess the same type of athleticism.   I recommend you watch the combine 40yard dash videos of the two of them…. Its crazy how well RGIII runs.

Fun Fact:  While at Baylor U, Robert Griffin III was protected on the weak side by Top O-Line prospect Robert Griffin, aptly nicknamed RG2

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tunes: 10

it has been awhile, as new tracks are hard to find. there is a tendency to stick with the reliable, the constant. these sounds reverberate in all facets of life, changing the beat of your drummer can be hard, even when it is a double click of the mic. however difficult it may be, new relationships must, and continue, to be fostered.

blind pilot – oviedo

chad vangaalen – inside the molecules

dirty projectors – gun has no trigger

joel plaskett – north star

http://music.cbc.ca/play/artist/Joel-Plaskett/North-Star

real estate – kinder blumen

sharon van etten – serpents

st. vincent – laughing with a mouth of blood

sufjan stevens – concerning the ufo sighting near highland, illinois

woodpigeon – that was good but you can do better

wye oak – civilian

sillpillow

Last week, one of my close friends made the observation that Hintonburg may be approaching its/her threshold for precious hipsterness. The subject line of her email was “Hintonburg Twee”.

The tipping point for her was the impending arrival of Merry Dairy—a new homemade ice cream joint offering frozen custard—a Coney Island original. It’s not that the girl doesn’t like ice cream—she’s just feeling slightly suffocated by the plethora of seemingly over-thought, affected indie restos. Never mind the potential for a growing obesity epidemic in Hintonburg — it’s the idea of these places that’s giving her pause:

i’m an anti-popular girl. all this hipsterism in ottawa is making me dangerously close to adopting my teenage punk again.

Right away, I knew where she was coming from but I just moved here from Burlington—the antithesis of overly hip—so I’m still a bit of a kid in a candy shop here in…

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