All entries for June 2006

June 30, 2006

Jumping on the bandwagon…

Writing about web page /andrewingram/entry/meme_lol/

Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

How many keys on your large collection of keyrings?
Probably about 7…cannot be arsed to check.

What curse word do you use the most?

Do you own an iPod?
I own a little iPod shuffle. It's iTunes you really want over the actual equipment.

What time is your alarm clock set for?
5:15am :(
No alarm set for tomorrow though. :D

How many suitcases do you own?
One….and it's bloody good.

Do you wear flip–flops even when it's cold outside?
Hell yes.

Where do you buy your groceries from?
Ummm at uni it's co–op, costcutter, tesco….at home i don't.

Would you rather take the picture or be in the picture?
Probably be in it. That way no one can complain.

What was the last movie you watched?
Oo–er…ummm i cannot remember the title of it but it was on tv last week.

Do any of your friends have children?
Nope. Thank goodness.

If you won the lottery, what's the first thing you would buy?
A huge trolly of lovely lovely food.

Has anyone ever called you lazy?
Yeah, mostly my dad.

Do you ever take medication to help you fall asleep faster?
No. Count sheep.

What CD is currently in your CD player?
Don't own one any more as i use me laptop…

Do you prefer regular or chocolate milk?
I don't like milk.

Has anyone told you a secret this week?
Yes! Mwhaahahahaah…but it's not interesting in the slightest.

When was the last time someone hit on you?
Today, yesterday and probably tomorrow.

What did you have for dinner?
Sea bass, potato wedges, salad and salsa. I get spoiled at home.

Do you wear hoodies often?
Hell yes. I love them.

Can you whistle?

Have you ever participated in a protest?
No…haven't really been stirred enough to actually be arsed to protest about anything yet.

Who was the last person to call you?
My brother.

What is your favourite ride at an amusement park?
None. Anything that spins = Victoria has an encounter with Mr Vomit.

Do you think people talk about you behind your back?
Yes. Natural really.

What area code are you in right now?
HP13 6QY

Did you watch cartoons as a child?
No. I still don't really enjoy them. (Reading them is another thing.)

How big is your local mall?
Not that big…but there are two.

How many siblings do you have?
Two. One sister, one brother – both elder.

Are you shy around the opposite sex?
If I fancy them then yes.

What is your biggest regret?
Not sure. I can be quite rude sometimes but i don't think i've regretted saying anything too much.

When was the last time you laughed so hard your sides hurt?
Ah, probs last weekend.

What movie do you know every line to?
Lord of the Rings trilogy most likely.

Do you own any band t–shirts?
Not band tee–shits…but i have Michael Buble ones and a Jamie Cullum one. :D

When was your last plane ride?
Coming back from America….last septmer. sniff

How many chairs are at your dining room table?

Do you read for fun?

Can you speak any languages other than English?
I like to dabble in the ancient languages….written and read only. I know basically no modern stuff though…barely remember any French.

Do you do your own dishes?
At uni yes…otherwise i help my mum wash up.

What colour is your bedroom painted?
At the moment its off white…yet to be decorated.

Have you ever cried in public?
Hmmm in front of friends…but not really in public since i was small.

Do you have a desktop computer or a laptop?
Laptop. It's my baby, it's my sugar.

Which do you make, wishes or plans?

Are you always trying to learn new things?
Of course.

Do you shower on a daily basis?
Yes, always. Otherwise i feel minging.

Are you currently wanting any piercings or tattoos?
I have enough. (Piercings, not tattoos.)

Do you believe that the guy should pay on the first date?
Absol–bloody–utely! Especially if he organised it. To be honest though, i wouldn't let him…i just want the offer (thats what counts.). I'd go halves.

Can you skip rocks?
Aye…like a pro.

Have you ever been to Jamaica?
No…going to Trinidad soon though…

What to snack on at the movie theatres?
I DON'T. And nor should anyone else. However, if i'm hungry or feel the film is going to be shit i may indulge in some minstrels.

Who was your favourite teacher?
Mrs MacFarlane – taught both Classics and Latin to me. I was her bitch.

Have you ever dated someone out of your race?
Not as yet. Though i am fancying more and more 'out of my race' guys…hmmm..

What is the weather like?

Would you ever date someone covered in tattoos?
Don't think so.

Do you have an online journal?
This isn't really a journal. So no.

What was your favourite class in high school?
Games, Classics.

Do you enjoy travelling via airplanes?
Ummmm i do and don't. Depends really.

What personality trait is a must–have in your preferred gender?
Wicked sense of humour.

Have you ever been attracted to someone physically unattractive?
Well thats a strange question. But probably not.

When was the last time you slept on the floor?
Hmmm cannot remember that one. I try to avoid sleeping on the floor.

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
I do like white wine.

Does your closest Starbucks have a drive–thru?
No, this isn't the inner city.

Do you like your living arrangement?
Cannot complain really!

What is your mother's hometown?
Errrm Glasgow and then Manchester.

How many hours of sleep do you need to function?
Proof shows i can get on fine with 5, no problems.

Do you eat breakfast daily?
Naaaah…makes me feel ill.

What was the last thing to scare you?
Someone scared me at work.

Are your days full and fast–paced?
They are full and sort of fast if i'm busy.

Did you ever get in trouble for talking in class?
Yeah and i remember being sent of the class. Tehehe.

What is your favourite fruit?

Do you pay attention to calories on the back of packages?
Hell no. I refuse to be a calorie counter. Just eat the bloody food and be done. Food was designed to be enjoyed, not to be counted.

How old will you be turning on your next birthday?

Are you picky about spelling and grammar?

Do you believe in life on other planets?
Ummm i don't think so. Nice idea though.

Have you ever been to Six Flags?
Nope. I don't really do theme parks. Vomit issue again.

Who was the last person to piss you off?
Les parentes issues…but tis kind of sorted now.

Do you believe that God has a gender?

What was the last thing you ate?
A small chocolate heart.

Do you get along better with the same or opposite sex?
I have more girl friends which suggests i get on more with girls as friends. But i have guy friends who i obviously get on well with too.

What did you dress up as for your first Halloween?
Errr nothing?

How did your parents pick your name?
Long story, i shall relate: My parents always liked my name but called my sister Elizabeth, so naturally they wanted to call me Victoria. However, their best friends recently had a child who they called Victoria so they started choosing other names (I was nearly Fiona) but then they could stand it no longer and rang up their friends and asked them what they thought and they said go with Victoria. History was therefore written.

Do you like mustard?

What do you tell yourself when times get hard?
What goes around comes around.

Would you ever sky dive?
Ummm i've parasailed so maybe.

Do you sleep on your side, tummy, or back?
Back. Otherwise it's no sleepy for me.

What character from a movie most reminds you of yourself?
I've got no idea.

Have you ever bid for something on ebay?
Nah, i just go to amazon.

What do you think of Angelina Jolie being pregnant?
She's one of the million other women who were/are.

Do you enjoy giving hugs?
Hell yes.

Would you consider yourself to be fashionable?
Not fashionable as such but i like to think i have some sort of taste.

Do you own a digital camera?

If someone you had no interest in dating expressed interest in dating you, how would you feel?

What celebrities have you been compared to?
Anyone who's anyone.

Who is your favourite Star Wars character?
Han–Solo…hot stuff!

Does it annoy you when someone says they'll call but never do?
Yes…and i do it too. Shit happens, man.

What books, if any, have made you cry?
Harry Potter books – wow!
Also, books like Goodnight Mr Tom made me cry when i was younger.

Do you think you're attractive?
Ummmm i think i'm ok.

What are you allergic to?
Some plants and pollen.

Are you a jealous person?
About some things, but i get over it quite quickly.

What's your opinion on sex without emotional commitment?

Do you ever feel guilty after eating meat?
Not really. But sometimes i do seriously think i should go veggie…as i'm rather an animal fan.

If you were born the opposite sex, what would your name have been?
Probably either Alexander or Edward. Those were my brother's second name choices so would probs have been handed down to me.

Finished?! Score.

June 17, 2006

The Science of Sleep

Movie image
The Science of Sleep
4 out of 5 stars

Director: Michael Gondry
Starring: Gael Garcia Bernal
Charlotte Gainsbourg
Alain Chabet

106 minutes.

Gael Garcia Bernal never fails to deliver. Coming to the attention of world audiences with his role in Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s acclaimed “Amores Perros”, Bernal went on to be nominated for Mexico’s Silver Ariel Award (Mexico’s equivalent of the Oscars). He is perhaps best known for his role in Alfonso Cuaron’s sexy road film “Y Tu Mama Tambien”, Bernal has gained the reputation of a mature actor despite his relatively young age. He is a linguist, speaking in many different tongues throughout his films but what is notable about The Science of Sleep is that it is Bernal’s first film where he is speaks mostly French throughout.

The Science of Sleep can only really be described as ‘weird’ or ‘intriguing’ but these descriptions are designed to put filmgoers off. In this case, don’t let it. The Science of Sleep is weird because it is supposed to be. It is certainly reminiscent of the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet) which incidentally (or not so incidentally) was also filmed and co–produced by Gondry. The film is visually very unique, as is the content and outline, intriguing the audience, raising plenty of laughs and is also baffling at the same time. Many will walk out of the cinema and proclaim that it is so strange, barbarian and mind boggling that they didn’t enjoy it and would probably not recommend it. Gondry’s ‘weird’ element in the film though is what makes it so good. It doesn’t have to be fully understood – and this is indeed the point. It is a film about reality, perception, the world of dreams and an individual’s inability to separate his dreams from reality. The point is that our dreams are never truly understood; they are wacky, inexplicable and downright odd and it is this portrayal of dreams that makes the film so special.

Since he was a child, Stephane Miroux (Bernal) has had problems separating his dreams from reality and growing into his twenties has not changed him a bit. His dreams are beginning to take over and ordinary life begins to intrude into his dreamscape. In his mind, Stephane is an authority on The Science of Sleep and he dreams a programme called “Stephane TV” where he is the host and elements from his life become involved, as do his family and friends.

The film opens with Stephane presenting a cooking show on “Stephane TV” where he mixes together random thoughts, reminiscences of the day, memories, love, songs and images. He demonstrates how dreams are prepared. Meanwhile, the real Stephane returns home to Paris and starts a job with a calendar publicist. Stunned to discover that his work provides no scope for creativity, Stephane shows his boss his “disastrology” drawings of earthquakes and plane crashes but his creativity is unappreciated. Soon, Stephane’s dreams are littered with images of the office life he becomes to loathe.

Stephane meets his new neighbour Stephanie and her friend Zoe, who mistake him for being an injured piano mover. He takes great pains to disguise the fact that he is the landlady’s son who lives across the hall. Stephane is undeniably first attracted to Zoe but he discovers a kindred spirit in Stephanie who shares his love for handcrafting whimsical and unusual objects. Stephanie, although charmed by Stephane’s sweetness and quirkiness, becomes increasingly confused by his inability to decide what is real and what is not and she makes it very clear that they can only be friends. Later Stephane dreams that he writes a best–selling novel called “I am just your neighbour and a liar. By the way, do you have Zoe’s number?” The initial attraction Stephane had for Zoe is one the major points of the film and Stephanie feels constantly downtrodden by her more attractive and flirtatious friend, resenting Stephane for being attracted to her. However, it is Stephanie who Stephane really wants and he constantly tries to woo her with his marvellous inventions, including a primitive time machine. It does not matter how much Stephane persists, Stephanie is always put off by his inexplicable behaviour. Thus, Stephane turns his dreams to search for the answer to Stephanie’s heart.

What must be noted about this film is just how funny it is. The characters Stephane has to work with are possibly the funniest, stealing the scenes they are in and are all so awful that one can empathise with Stephane and understand why he hates his job. The clever juxtaposition of the two main characters is masterful; Stephane full of quirky, childlike fantasies versus Stephanie who is more mature in mind but not necessarily in body. She also has a very childlike quality to her but is a lot more aware of the world. For example, when Stephane shows her the glasses he has invented to show the world as 3D, she says that life is 3D already. The oblivious Stephane cannot see this.

The film oscillates between dreams and reality and the audience gets lost in “Stephane TV”. There is a point where there is complete silence in the film except a very faint voice–over that actually has the power to make the audience feel as though they are drifting off to sleep – a very clever and apt manipulation of the human senses.

The Science of Sleep is a real mixture of life, perception, animation and craftwork. The use of animation for Stephane’s dream world, although looking very handmade and childlike, looks ahead of it’s time in terms of quality. The difference and non–difference between the two worlds is very effective, but the film is not purely about dreams. The central theme is the relationship betwixt Stephane and Stephanie and the fact that Stephane is indeed a little insane, partly why Stephanie and is not attracted to Stephane (despite Gael Garcia Bernal being extremely easy on the eyes).

Gondry implies that a dream is a like a stew with lots of ingredients being mixed up together, but he also implies that dreams are a science. It is clear that he does not believe that all dreams should be mythologized and made into symbols. Everyone has his or her own associations. Memory has to be explored and dreams have to be interpreted as a science in their own right.

I highly recommend The Science of Sleep for its sheer originality, bilingualism, fantastic acting, hilarious script and the fact that is takes Film to new heights in terms of audience perception, animation and style.

June 2006

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