Bopping with Niall JP O'Leary

Niall O'Leary insists on sharing his hare-brained notions and hysterical emotions. Personal obsessions with cinema, literature, food and alcohol feature regularly.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Wicked Webs and Women

Well, a warm, strong sun rose on Cork this morning and, in an effort to beat the rush to the shower (actually there was no rush), I was up to see it. One thing about sleeping in hostels, it puts you into a disciplined regime and one I wish I had the will power to follow by choice.

Last night after dinner I took myself along to a cinema. One thing I was curious about in the new 'Spiderman 3' movie, was how Danny Elfman would adapt the theme this time. As the movie began, I was distinctly underwhelmed by what had been done to the music, and when the credit was shown, I suddenly realised why; Elfman had been dumped for Christopher Young. A bad omen if ever there was one and one which foretold a lot of truth. The movie is dreadful, truly dreadful, with moments that unintentionally had the audience alternately laughing or cringing. Alvin Sargent, who also wrote the screenplay for the second installment (though I note Michael Chabon had a hand in the story), is here hampered with 'help' from director Raimi and his brother. I could see the points at which Sargent might be saying 'That doesn't make sense' and Raimi saying 'Don't worry, they'll buy it, they'll buy it. We have to fit the villains (ie. Venom) in'. Anything that depends too much on the goodwill, instead of the intelligence, of the audience is doomed to failure, and this fails. Even Bruce Campbell, taking off John Cleese as the French waiter in the Mr Creosote sketch, can't help matters. A waste.

To continue on the movie theme, many claim that 'Abre los ojos', the basis for 'Vanilla Sky', is an uncredited adaptation of Philip K' Dick's 'Ubik'. While there are some similarities, particularly with respect to artificial realities, I am finding more of a similarity with the book I am currently reading, 'Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said'. Admittedly I am only a quarter way through, but the vain man lost in an incomprehensible world meeting psychotic women strikes a common chord with the Spanish (and later American) movie.

I got a bed in Kinlay House hostel and ended up in a ten bed dorm (although only 6 were taken). As usual, there were the couple of American guys who had gone to sleep earlier stopping anyone from turning on the light. Then later (2 a.m. later) there were the American girls shouting in whispers about those 'creepy Swedish guys' they nevertheless chased (or were chased by) all night. I make no apologies for listening. Seeing as they woke me up and spoke so loud, I couldn't exactly do anything else. One was apologising to the other for kissing the 'cute' one whom the other apparently fancied. Then there were the questions about whether the Swedes had wanted sex or not (ha! As I say these were young girls), and whether they had been buying the girls food and drink all night to get them to 'give out'. Anyhow it didn't matter, the Swedes were going the next day. But did the Swedes know they were American. I kid you not, one said, 'Economics is power. They know us because we have more money than them'. Such insight! Eventually they descended into a debate about possible future conquests; 'I want an Australian one!', 'I'd like an Irish one, but you never find them in hostels!'. Hee, hee, hee.

So after not much sleep, I was happy enough to get up at 7.30. The first thing I did on getting to reception was get a single room for tonight, then I moved my things, and then had breakfast - provided - a continental breakfast, ie. toast, jam and tea. The place is central to the city, if a little dingy (in that it reminds me of Sydney), but I have a B and B booked for Friday night in Annascaul, the birthplace of Tom Crean, Antarctic explorer. No trip to the South Pole would be complete without a visit to his pub.


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