Thursday, 17 December 2009

list two

the good being over, let's get to the bad and the ugly.

books. i read some turgid nonsense this year and no mistake. quite how i managed to get myself to the end was beyond me. stand up john avde lindqvist. not only am i stunned that tomas alfredson managed to get let the right one in into the form it finds in the film, i'm even more amazed after reading lindqvist's handling the undead. oh. dear. god. alien maggot things arrive and the dead come back to life. they wander about. people aren't happy. and then, fortunately, it finishes. to be fair perhaps it's just not my cup of tea. nor t's, who threatened to beat me round the head with it for 'making' her read it. maybe we were just missing something...

but i'd have lindqvist round the house to chastise me and show me the error of my ways before i'd read the following again.

the possibility of an island by michel houellebecq. older bloke. likes young women. a lot. not so keen on the older version. doesn't appear to think they can be intelligent. doesn't like arabs. likes porn. possibly read some books once and quotes or alludes to them now and again to gull the reader into thinking there might be something worthwhile going on. there isn't.

jeff in venice, death in varanasi by geoff dyer. another one who seems to be working out his longing for sex with young women out in his fiction tho perhaps not as flagrantly as houellebecq. this does contain however possibly the least convincing drug taking i've read anywhere in fiction. no seriously, i've seen the 'drug' episode of inspector morse and it was better than this. if there was an award, like the bad sex award, for truly shit depictions of drug taking (by wankers) then this would win hands down. and it only gets worse from there. cue half a book of some tit in india 'finding himself'. maybe he starves to death. i hope so.

the question remains : if given a free plane ticket to go and beat either one of these around the head with their own work of fiction who would it be? tempting as it might seem, given i've liked some of dyer's other books, it'd have to be houellebecq, just for general bleating whininess. even his mum doesn't like him.

yes, yes, as t points out, the fault is mine for persevering in the first place but really..? these boys owe me for stealing bits of my life.

bad films. a rich and wonderful vein this year. from (see above) the beat my heart skipped - middle class wanker wannabe gangster (but isn't - property speculation ffs!) but it's okay he can play the piano. a shocker! transformers 2. holy jesus, i've done that. and the day after tomorrow. again (why? why? why?). oss 117 cairo: nest of spies, a film with a houellebecqian view of the middle east. been there. fast and the furious. i do take my life a quarter mile at at a time. small beer!

and then the rarefied oeuvre that is jason statham in any of crank/transporter/death race. death race was mince as it lacked the humour of the original, which was a shame, transporter 3 let itself down because they had that whole is he/isn't he gay action man thing going on in the first two and now he gets the girl!!? but it was still funny. esp the arch villainess who runs about in her pants. crank tho, was truly atrocious, like grand theft auto but with people. ridiculous story, tho not as preposterous as crank 2, stupid characters, jaw droppingly stupid. i've made myself a promise that sometime next year i'm going to dodge the whole look after myself, not drink etc thing and get you'll be arrested if you go out in public like that wasted while watching all the transporter and crank movies. now that's commitment!

but the worst film of the year? korean film let me down with both kim ji-woon's the good, the bad and the weird and more especially park chan-wook's i'm a cyborg but that's okay, esp the latter after the vengeance trilogy. howard mcain's spin on beowulf, outlander, was just, well bollocks really, but the worst film?

easy. step up guy ritchie. rocknrolla. you what guv? not quite as bad as revolver but in the same ghastly vein. do a double bill of those if you think the statham is so bad. go ahead. i dare you!

i love bad films, films you can drink all over, talk through, fast forward, laugh with, laugh at, re-enact, fall asleep to. if i really was going to get marooned on a desert island i would take a couple of special books, a special film or two but you can be sure in the false bottom of that suitcase there'd be a stack of bad movies and a bottle of vodka!


Sorlil said...

never heard of any of the books or films you mention, in fact I'm not entirely sure you didn't just make it all up, lol

Rachel Fox said...

Excellent work. You do this very well. Contact national media at once.

swiss said...

sorlil, if you only see one thing on this post, and because it appears on the last post, watch let the right one in. it's a vampire movie true but does lots of other things.

rachel i did once apply for a job as a food reviewer for the list only i reviewed chip shops and macdonalds so they weren't up for it. cowards!

Niamh B said...

loving the lists swiss, rachel's right, you've got talent... I really want to check out houellebecq now though!

possibly read some books once and quotes or alludes to them now and again to gull the reader into thinking there might be something worthwhile going on. there isn't.

love it

swiss said...

you definitely should, if only to annoy yourself. i'd possibly go for platform or atomised as they're supposed to be 'better'.

or for the female version check out catherine millet's sexual life of catherine m. which looks so turgis i can;t face it.

Dominic Rivron said...

I think if you were going to be there any length of time, a still would be infinitely preferable to a bottle of vodka.

The worst book I read (well half read) this year was Martian Timeslip by Philip K Dick. Perhaps I just wasn't in the mood.

swiss said...

i did come across the origin of the still just recently when reading about alchemy. maria prophetissa, one of those early women like hypatia of alexandria, but whom i'd never heard of. she still survives as the bain-marie. now there's a pop quiz answer! lol

i could maybe make a still but i'm unsure if i'd want to drink what it produced. i'd be intending my desert island experienc eot be more of a retreatment than a marooning!

Niamh B said...

I bought that catherine miller one for a friend of mine, just cos her name is Catherine O M, I can be childish like that.
Liked your wonderful life post - it is such a long and fraught road - the kids thing, isn't it? Best of luck to them.

swiss said...

i thought it was ironic that catherine millet, having done her thing, got all pissed off when she discovered her husgand was doing the same and, i think, then have released his own book about his experiences. it must just be charming round their house!

Niamh B said...

r & t are so near each other on the key board aren't they? (almost as close as b & g)
Anyway - that's my friend's fiancée's next Birthday present sorted... thanks!

Niamh B said...

r & t are so near each other on the key board aren't they? (almost as close as b & g)
Anyway - that's my friend's fiancée's next Birthday present sorted... thanks!

swiss said...

what are you saying like? that my typing's consistently slipshid (sic) and lackadaisical? lol

Roxana said...

because i feared ending with exactly the same comment as Sorlil, i jumped with joy when i finally spotted a name i was familiar with. and not only that, one that i also deeply dislike, i am so so so glad i finally found somebody who is exactly as passionate as me in his rejection - of course, houellebecq!!!
and this is still better than Beigbeder oh - what the French call litterature nowadays, please, let somebody stop this!
(the same goes for Millet, of course!)

swiss said...

my anti-houellebecq rant at my writer's group the other night was do voluminous and so intense they've suggested i do it as part of a stand up routine. perhaps i shall....

but this beigberder person is worse. i actually find that intriguing! lol