Posted by jukkahoo
There was so much beer consumed yesterday (and today) that I don't really have one particular beer for today, so I'll make an arbitrary lottery here. Just a minute. (♫elevator music♬) And the winner is... Thornbridge Sequoia! This is an amber ale, smooth, very drinkable beer. Easy describes this ale very well.
Time to remind people of the awesomeness of Australian speculative fiction. Twelft Planet Press (an amazing Australian Small Press) has a wonderful, intriguing, mind-blowing, intelligent and ass-kicking series called Twelve Planets, a 12-part short story collections by twelve Australian women writers. Narrelle M. Harris' Showtime is one of these. Four horror stories of verious degree of scary and funny (mostly funny). I wasn't too thrilled by the first one (Stalemate), where the denouement is evident from the beginning. In hindsight, I appreciate it more. Thrall is a loving take on the age old vampire gag. The Truth About Brains gets zombie stories spot on and the title story mixes everything to a very satisfying conclusion. These stories are about families and subverting the readers preconceptions about familiar monsters. Highly recommended.
Valhalla Rising (2009) is really intensive, gritty viking adventure that travels a great deal from the grimy, violent beginning to the eerie, violent ending. There's toughness that is almost inpenetrable, bleak, barren landscapes and minimal visuals, and a lot of blood. This is almost a silent movie with very matter-of-fact dialogue and the acidity of the ending.
Valhalla Rising is a brutal, harsh and beautiful low-key (and budget) historical movie, that deals with ideas of faith, belief and the futility of it all. It is occasionally slow going, but nothing Tarkovskian or even Kaurismäki-like. Well, maybe the latter. In its heart this is a 70's film with contemporary visuals and as 70's movies go, Star Wars - A New Hope is an exception to the rule. :)
Who would've thought that this would turn into one of the most evocative, intriguing, elusive, exceptional pop music acts of the 80's? Five albums of sheer brialliance, from purest of pop, to melancholy masterpieces and finally the far-out soundscapes. Bliss.