Ego Waxy has created a league table of Metafilter sources -- and there I am at no. 18810 just above Although all the oners seem to be in a fairly random order so in my mind I'm at 8333 ...
Music I would say that a good percentage of the music I listen to is from film soundtracks -- usually the quasi-music inspired by and from items which turn up with anything. It's unusual how few really good examples there are around. The worst are just a collection of songs without any seeming coherance to the choices, all different and clinging together hoping the listener won't assign them to obvlivion with the use of the skip button.

I've found that the really good soundtracks are those which both evoke the film they're based on but at the same time are as unique and enjoyable away from the movie. This can definately be seen in 6Music's list of top five songs as voted for by listeners. In all of the cases listed the album itself is an excellent introduction to a particular style of music -- as though a genre has made a mix-tape to promote itself including both popular hits and forgotten classics. Yes even Dirty Dancing. As is customery in these situations I offer my top five.

Grosse Pointe Blank
Groundhog Day
Almost Famous
Stealing Beauty
Martha, Meet Frank Daniel and Lawrence

Although that's far from complete but I really couldn't live without any of them so it will do for now.
Sculpture About two years ago I wrote: "I love art. I was almost part of the art world. But I can count the number of art objects that have given me a gut wrenching emotional response on one hand." That was when I was trying to describe the profound effect Georgina Starr Crying had on me. I've never actually elaborated on what the other four fingers represent. Today I had the chance to revisit the forefinger.

I first and last saw Anthony Gormley's Field at Tate Liverpool in the Summer 1993. It was just before I went to University, a brief break during the months when I was pointlessly reading through a series of core course books instead of being out enjoying my final month of being a school leaver. I think I went with my Mum (she'd dragged me away from the books which I thought were so important) and to be honest I don't remember all that much about that visit.

But I do remember going back alone and standing there again, looking over the sea of simple orange faces stretching on across the gallery space and wondering how something so profound could come from the mind of a human being. I felt very small -- smaller even that the little clay figures because I didn't feel like I had the capacity for that kind of inspiration, or to be able to say the things they seemed to want me to say to them. That Field was made with people from St Helens and Ibstock, a local brick making company. Which was the other process which threw me -- that something so universal could be created by local people. Made it even more personal somehow.

So here I was today, eleven years later in Tate Liverpool looking over those little black eyes. This time it was about familiarity and nostalgia. Things had been so much easier then -- I'd been looking up across my twenties as a time for potential for all the possibilities. A decade later the philosophy has drifted away and I looked at Field for what it is, thirty-five thousand clay models arranged in such away we perceive a hoard of beings looking up expectantly.

This time I had something to tell them, and was ready, but when I looked down, they seemed to know it already. They were eyeing me in such a way that wanted to explain it all to me instead but couldn't because their makers hadn't decided to give them mouths as though to keep their secrets from the world. This Field was manufactured in 1990 by the Texca family of brick-makers in Mexico, sixty men, women and children aged from six to over sixty; if you agree with the idea that when someone moulds clay the put something of themselves into it, this Field was older and had a greater degree of experience and was from a place I might never see in my lifetime.

Eavesdropping on the conversations of other visitors I discovered that Field is going into storage after its visit to Liverpool. It feels like it should be displayed permanently somewhere, in a massive room; perhaps all of the different Fields from around the world could be brought together, accessible enough that anyone can make the pilgrimage just to stand in front of them and ponder. A fellow visitor had another idea. She wished she could have a couple under a tree in her garden so that she could see them every morning before work. Which on reflection sounds like an astounding merchandising idea.
Blog! Exhibit A in my case for continuing to use The Rules on this weblog (even though of late its meant that things have been a bit dull and brief -- things will pick up soon, I promise). But mistakes happen and hopefully Michael can dust himself off and start again.
Film You will have noticed that the Saturday Scene Unseen has taken a break, although something new will be along soon. In the meantime fans should take a look at this post at the remarkable Review: A Day which covers many of the things I would have gotten around to eventually and plenty of things I hadn't thought of.
TV Although I've only minimally been following it the last couple of months, I wanted Shell to win Big Brother. I did as soon as I saw her get out of the car on the first night. She was the most normal one there (although Dan runs a close second on that) which obviously hasn't made her too popular. Frankly if I have to choose from the final two, Nadia to win, if only to make a point about how progressive we've become of late.
Film (what again?) Useful piece from Suw which equates the formats of scripts and weblogs, what constitutes each and whether pinning down those definitions is all that important anyway.
Film A remarkably honest interview with Joe Dante about his career before and after the just about Ok Looney Toons: Back In Action:
"If you're going to make a movie like this starring characters that you've owned for years you wouldn't take all the cartoons off the air for five years before this feature, but that's what they [WB] did! When they got back all their old cartoons, which used to be owned by various different companies, they took them off the networks and they put them on a cable channel that they own - intermittently. So they weren't as fresh in the public mind as they thought they were. So when the picture came out the kids were not that familiar or even interested in those characters as they were in the Powerpuff girls or Japanese anime and some other stuff. And so it was very disappointing attendance."
The main problem with that film is that it can't decide which audience it's trying to service. There are all these funny animals walking around, but there are also a hundred film references which fly over the top of their heads. Clearly as Dante says the kids have moved on from these characters so it would have been more interesting to cater for an older demographic with something nostalgic -- go even further in that direction. But -- oh yes -- they've already done that -- it's called Who Framed Roger Rabbit ...
Film I never hear anything good said about David Spade, and so toxic have the opinions I've seen that I in fact haven't seen any of his films. So I'm puzzled when I see the kind of self-depricating humour on display in the audio commentary for Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star as highlighted by The Onion AV Club: "After Wolf feigns snoring during a tender scene with Spade and McCormack, Spade says sarcastically, "People are bawling right now... They're bawling because they're going, 'Why isn't it Jim Carrey?'"
Film Fametracker fame audits my second favourite actor Liev Schreiber:
"Last weekend, we discovered that when Schreiber's got a big old face-on-the-poster lead in a huge summer blockbuster, we would have still liked even more; while Jonathan Demme's current remake of The Manchurian Candidate belongs to Schreiber and Meryl Streep (who plays his character's mother), and while it moves along at a brisk pace and never gets boring, the scenes that don't contain Schreiber's Raymond Shaw are a little less unboring than the ones that do.
Any chance we could get him to appear in the new series of Doctor Who?
Who A rumour was printed in SFX magazine (published today) saying that negotiations were still ongoing regarding the inclusion of The Daleks in the new series of Doctor Who. Ho - hum I thought -- wishful thinking. Then I check the BBC website tonight and ... It's official! The Daleks are coming back after all. This alternate reality I'm living in is really turning out to be a grand place...
Comics Over the past couple of years, tv shows which would in the past, not necessarily by considered for licensing into a spin-off comic book series have appeared on the shelves. While it's not too much of a stretch to imagine Buffy: The Vampire Slayer in strip form, who would have thought cop shows such as CSI or The Shield would work in that format? Now the one programme which would seem to be impossible to transfer because its structure should only work within the demands of episodic television is published in graphic form.

In 24: One Shot, a prequel to the first season, we find Jack Bauer on his first day at CTU, meeting the team for the first time (some making more of an impression than others as you might expect). This being 24 within pages, Jack finds himself in an usual position of being the one man defending a young woman, the all important information source, against a terrorist threat.

As expected, in comparison with the elaborate storylines which appeared in three seasons of the television series it feels like quite a slight tale closer to the single story per hour format. In the book, which follows the series by taking place over a whole day, every two pages constitutes an hour with a clock at the top of each left hand page keeping the reader in touch with the time. Also, through clever use of crosscutting frames and dialogue and by following the mood of the series of separating the main characters as much as possible it just about gets away with feeling like its source.

Unsurprisingly, its Jack's story and on the nose writing from J. C. Vaughn and Mark L. Haynes keeps him perfectly in character, with dialogue which could be spoken by Keifer Sutherland. His likeness, and in fact the likenesses of all the character are perfectly in tune with reality. With Renado Guedes art it looks like an episode of 24, closely realizing the lighting and staging of the scenes as filmed - and those knowing looks are also there in force.

It's a surprising and interesting experiment, although its difficult to see how it might sustain itself as an ongoing series of books. It's impossible to see how that might work - an hour per issue and you risk the audience loosing interest as the day takes two years to be completed. A day an issue and repetition is sure to set in. And anyway, how many days can we spend with Jack before we risk overrunning the work of the tv series?
Life Tonight was my first reading night. As I was clearing and tidying my room on Sunday, I found countless newspapers and magazines that I'd bought and subsequently not had time or inclination to read. Not wanting to throw any of them away ignored I gathered them in the box which had previously housed my new shoes and I sat this evening and worked my way through. In the end I only had about a week's worth -- so the most of the news was fairly current. At times it did feel like I was abroad somewhere remote getting the news from home days late. But most of the writing was in features format and most of that doesn't age. A pattern I did find was that most of the really affecting pieces were written by women; while the male writers banged on about politics here or abroad, female writers talked in the main about the nuts and bolts of life and in a funny way I found myself identifying more with their words.

In an almost related topic, my new brown laced shoes are only just beginning to break in. By last Thursday I could hardly walk and ended up going back to older pairs to let my feet settle back down. I put the new ones on again this morning and they weren't too horrendous -- I think I might be winning this battle. I tend to hoard old shoes -- for the afformentioned reason but also for sentimental reasons -- because I wore them on such and such a trip. But should I want to give them a new home, it's good to know that there are possibilities.
Film Great little interview with Cameron Crowe about shooting his new film ElizabethTown in Kentucky:
"Well, it's beautiful and it looks like no other place in the world as far as I'm concerned and as far as our cinematographer is concerned, too, and he's a real master of photography and I love working with him. His name is John Toll, and he actually was the guy who filmed "Simpatico" (a 1999 movie featuring horse racing), so this is his second time around in Kentucky."
Meanwhile, Cameron's official website went live recently and it's all happening...
Film I've just arrived back from seeing Natalie.... Mark Kermode sums up this horrible little film for me. "By the end, I wanted everyone to do what they had been promising for two hours and go screw themselves." Just awful. Apart from the photography. And Michael Nyman's music. And the acting. The script stank and so did the editing (it could have lost a good forty minutes without any discernable loss of clarity). The only redeeming feature of the trip was seeing a poster for Before Sunset on a wall and realising I can see it again locally soon. Speaking of which -- about that Nina Simone song -- AskMe may have the answer ...