21 09 2007

Babel, a 2006 Oscar-nominated film by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu about interconnections and (mis)communications in present day globalized world, was filmed in 5 countries and 3 continents, and features a multinational cast which includes Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Rinko Kikuchi, and Adriana Barraza.

Here is an excerpt from a student’s film reflection of Babel (completely inappropriate, I know, but this is precious!). Yikes, it seems that somebody clicked on the wrong Google result link.

“Babel is one of the movies that you could expect received a lot of efforts from the props men. With its super-defined details and structures, every location and set that was in the movie is a work of art and has been thought of carefully.

“The set has been rebuilt to look exactly as it was in the history….The nostalgic recreation of the Babylonian times added to the intensified battle scenes and storyline. The weapons also truly represented the exact era of the Babel times.

“The tall towers and the stone buildings were the ones that most represents the Babylonian Period. The structural design is brick yellowish stones as used like in the steps of the pyramids in the Egyptian period. The “Labyrinth”-like inside because of endless trail inside (like the doors and other gates etc.) was a match to how the story would flow. It was remarkable that they were able to remade it because there is no exact existing image of what the Babylonian period looked like. They have only inferred from the story and the story alone.

“The costumes of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were the ones who most represented the span of time being narrated. They were made to look as if they have really traveled back in time and have lived there. The outstanding castings and their magnanimous performance highlighted the whole movie. Maybe it helped that there exists a real-life chemistry between the two and made their acts very seemingly real. Though the movie did not really received much favorable response as it was expected, I can say that the movie over-all was a job well done.”


This is Entertainment

19 09 2007

Before Starstruck and Gimik and TGIS and Ang TV, there was That’s Entertainment. If you are interested in the names and fates of former Kuya Germs discoveries, this is a particularly useful link.

Some page highlights:

Tootsie Guevarra, Lindsay Custodio and Janet Arnaiz are currently in the States.

Kim de los Santos and Maricar de Mesa has both retired from showbiz.

Bimbo Bautista became a Cavite politician.

Vina Morales, Piolo Pascual, Judy Ann Santos and Ruffa Gutierrez moved to ABS-CBN.

Jason Martin Perez moved to NBN.

Jojo Alejar moved to RJTV.

Makes me wonder who is updating this thing.

Remember Precious Hipolito? Caselyn Francisco? Mutya Crisostomo? Joed Serrano? Bunny Paras? Nick Martel (also known as Nikki Martel)? Imagine a reunion. Late 80s all-stars galore.

Point and Shoot

12 09 2007

Laiya, on a good day, is quite photogenic.


First, there was the beach.








Point and Shoot






Then, there was the impromptu photo shoot.




Purple and Pink


Pink and Pink




6 09 2007

I hope I won’t jinx it by announcing it prematurely but this December, it will be annyong Korea (snow! winter! winter sonata!). I believe this is a fitting Filipino retribution for the unrelenting Koreanization of the Philippines (or specifically, of Taal, Boracay, Baguio, Galera, Banaue, Pagsanjan, Anilao, Maginhawa, Kalayaan Ave, Eunilaine [where once upon a fateful time, I caught sight of Kaye Abad and Chito Miranda together] and soon, maybe, Sagada).

I remember this anecdote of a sinking ship in the middle of the sea. The passengers were told to throw overboard excess weight, to rid themselves of superfluous possessions. The Japanese threw his laptop to the sea, saying that they have plenty of computers in his country anyway. The Korean flung his phone to the sea, saying that there are millions of phones in his country anyway. The Filipino, using a parallel logic, tossed the Korean overboard. (But I kid. Koreans are nice, friendly people!)

Speaking of Koreans, I wish you to meet, dear readers, the most misunderstood character in Arrested Development, Annyong. Annyong was adopted from Korea by Lucille, the show’s matriarch, to spite Buster, his Oedipus-complex-ridden son, who is suddenly and alarmingly showing signs of rebellion.


5 09 2007

Terraces (Banaue)

Bags (Lucban)

Bulb (Sagada)

Grass (Zambales)

Tomatoes (Lucban)

Coconut (Batangas)

Gudmundsdottir, Arulpragasam and other difficult names

2 09 2007

For the first time in her long, revered musical career, Bjork underwhelms. Volta, her beat-based sixth studio release, sees her collaborating with hit god Timbaland and a host of musicians from Congo, China, Mali, London and Iceland to mixed results. Some tracks tread familiar sonic territory and a couple are marred by sophomoric lyrics. Brass permeates the record (pulsating in ‘Vertebrae by Vertebrae’ and melodic in ‘The Dull Flame of Desire’) and while admirable, the blunt sound feels stifling and heavy. Still, three gems are proof that Bjork remains a genius: the muddled, addictive ‘Earth Intruders’; her ‘diva duet’ with Antony Hegarty in ‘The Dull Flame of Desire’; and the repetitively powerful ‘Declare Independence’.

Ys, one of last year’s best reviewed records, is Joanna Newsom’s five-song, fifty-minute sophomore release. The album, dense in imagery, manages to balance delicately Joanna’s child-like voice, her celestial harp, the lush orchestration, and the lyrical storytelling. Ys even makes an astronomy lesson poetic. In ‘Emily’ we learn the difference between a meteor, a meteorite and a meteoroid:

That the meteorite is a source of the light
And the meteor’s just what we see
And the meteoroid is a stone that’s devoid of the fire that propelled it to thee

And the meteorite’s just what causes the light
And the meteor’s how it’s perceived
And the meteoroid’s a bone thrown from the void that lies quiet in offering to thee

Mixing rap, dancehall, electronic, grime and world music, M.I.A’s (Maya Arulpragasam) debut was 2005’s Arular, a celebration of musical and thematic diversity and originality. Her radical political beliefs (her father was a Tamil Tiger activist) are tightly interwoven with her traditional rapper lyrics. In ‘Pull Up The People’ she sings: ‘I got the bombs to make you blow/I got the beats to make you bang bang bang’.

Geek time! New books for the month.


Sexus is the first volume of Henry Miller’s Rosy Crucifixion trilogy.

Plexus is the second volume of Henry Miller’s Rosy Crucifixion trilogy.

A novella from the most renowned magical realist.

Another novella from the most renowned magical realist.

A comedy!

Fitzgerald’s last (and his other great) novel

The first volume of Lawrence Durrell’s Alexandria Quartet