Friday, May 29, 2009


Tin House #38

The Club Dumas, Perez-Reverte. The book that became The 9th Gate.

Richard III, Norton Critical Edition.

The Manuscript Found in Saragossa, Potocki.

The Tragedy of King Richard the Second; The History of Henry the Fourth; The Second Part of Henry the Fourth; The Life of Henry the Fifth; The First Part of Henry the Sixth; The First Part of the Contention of the Two Famous Houses of York and Lancaster (2 Henry VI); The True Tragedy of Richard Duke of York and the Good King Henry the Sixth (3 Henry VI). The Norton Shakespeare. Good vacation reading.

The Fall of Carthage, Goldsworthy.

Dido, Queen of Carthage; Edward the Second; Tamburlaine The Great, Parts 1 and 2. Marlowe, Penguin Classics. Equally good reading on the, er, second vacation.

Eclipse, John Shirley.

The Horrific Sufferings of the Mind-Reading Monster Hercules Barefoot: His Wonderful Love and His Terrible Hatred, Vallgren.

Respected Sir, Mahfouz.

Almost Transparent Blue, Murakami. Pointless junkie-narrative.

The Wrestler's Cruel Study, Dobyns.

American Psycho, Ellis. This was as much a delight to read, having seen the film, as Fight Club was a disappointment.

No Limits, No Control

Jarmusch's latest is a throwback to his early, pre-Ghost Dog days. You remember -- back when his films were worth watching.

Sure, it's a two-hour meander, following an uncommunicative character around Spain in a series of amusingly repetitive spy-movie encounters. Plot and character are superfluous: one gets the impression that Jarmusch is speaking directly to the audience through the various set-pieces, rather than trying to capture an elusive mood or idea.

What violence and crime (or is it politics?) there is remains completely stylized. And not stylized in an unconvincing, "I've never seen a real fight" Fassbinder way. Stylized in a "you get the idea, we don't need to show it" way.

Slow. Pointless. Clever. Enjoyable.

* * * R A T I N G * * *

The Limits of Control (IMDB)

Wince : [**___]
Flinch : [*____]
Retch : [*____]
Gape : [***__]

Beerequisite : [*____]
Pornability : [***__]
Obscurity : [*____]
Explicability : [**___]