A Workshop on Making Deviled Eggs

Jack Your Happiness

redline

Redline (2009)


The Olympics choose the most frosty military dictatorship ever as their host country, even though their government is violently opposed to it. Their military chooses to retaliate against the Olympics by unleashing the most powerful bioweapons on the participants. The Olympics officials fight back by shutting down the country’s defense systems, but too late. The bioweapons nearly destroy the country, forcing the government to unleash some more bioweapons to tackle the ones they initially released, and are now at war with themselves. Through all this mayhem, the games continue on with the surviving participants. There are no rules. The participants are even allowed to kill each other, and some even play for the mafia fixing the matches (oddly, this is the only thing that’s illegal).

This is Redline.

It is the galaxy’s deadliest illegal auto-racing event that is held every five years in a secret location. This year, the racers are to compete on Roboworld, a supreme militarized planet ruled by cyborgs. Roboworld are patently unwelcoming and intend to kill all the racers if they choose to compete on their planet. But the Redliners are unfazed by the threat, and are out to have unmufflered fun. The government unleash a powerful bioweapon named Funky Boy on the racers, but it also destroys much of Roboworld and the surrounding planets. They then unleash a cyborg-Colonel-monster to counter their own Funky boy, causing more destruction! The racers continue through the mayhem, the audience continues to bet on the racers, and the mafia continues to fix the match. The racers whip out all sorts of powerful doohickeys and pull every trick in the book to hoodwink their competition.

By the end of the movie, the plot about the government blows up and fizzles on its own. It is as if they just meant to dramatically self-destruct themselves for no reason, while the people from other planets whoop it up on their turf through the whole skirmish, like the explosions around them are party confetti!

It is a bizarrely entertaining movie, with not a dull moment in it, and not a frame that looks unexceptional! There is a bricolage of many artistic styles whisked into one creative alloy; like a necklace with diamonds, Froot Loops and plastic beads. When you catch someone wearing it, you don’t ask why... unless you want to jack your happiness.

(I recommend watching it in Japanese with English subtitles)
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When Fours Turn to Threes

starlet

Starlet (2012)


My preferred relationship stories are the non-romantic kinds that are born out of exceptional circumstances. 

I read that there are five stages to any relationship development. The first stage is acquaintanceship, when two people make first impressions; The second stage is buildup, when they display warm feelings towards each other; The third stage is continuation, when they show commitment to growing the relationship; The fourth stage is deterioration, when boredom and bad feelings lead to a downward spiral; and The fifth stage is termination, when all ties are severed! 

I like when relationship stories threaten to enter the fourth stage, but somehow find a way to undo all harm and end on a happy note. It is rarely that one is able to accept another's flaws, or see it as being up to them to make things interesting. I am always looking to find that kind of love in non-romantic relationships both in my life and in stories. Sadly, in my life, Fours seldom turn to Threes. Happily, this movie is a special gem.

(Other recent movies and TV shows that I am thinking of as I write this are: Fan Chan (My Girl); Breaking Bad; and Lonesome Dove)
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