bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
"My name is [personal profile] bironic. I like things in space and things with vampires," I wrote at [personal profile] st_aurafina's friending meme in January, then realized my 5 Festivids consisted of 3 set in space and 2 involving vampires, one of which was set to a Byron poem.

This year I made:

Sunny Days (Dark City)
For onewingdippedinblood. My actual assignment.

Something's Going Wrong (Waxwork)
For onewingdippedinblood. I hadn't heard of this movie before reading onewingdippedinblood's Festivids letter, but watched it, was delighted, and thought of a vid song right away. Kudos to [personal profile] mific for guessing that I made this! #onbrand

Behind Blue Eyes (2001: A Space Odyssey)
For cherryice. Because the song match was too terrible/great to pass up.

Going through space with the world (Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield)
For thirdblindmouse. Because space and science and a joyous expansion into celebrity.

She Walks in Beauty (Let the Right One In)
For quizkwatsh. I'd been wanting to make this one for a while and wish it had gone over better; I wonder if it's because people don't know the source or if the vid itself is not compelling.

More notes on each vid at the posts linked above.

As for those vid-related remarks I couldn't share at the time... )

Also, it turns out [personal profile] elipie is the one who made "To The Edge" for me! Check it out, with vidder's notes. I know the subject matter will not be everyone's cup of tea, but it's a very good vid, at once cerebral and visceral, and it didn't get a lot of love and it deserves more. ♥
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
onewingdippedinblood's Dear Festividder post excited me the most of anyone's during signups, so I was very happy to get them as my assignment. Dark City was the original plan, but the description of Waxwork & Waxwork II sounded right up my alley, so I watched those as well, discovered that we liked some of the same parts, and ended up with a treat idea.


Title: Sunny Days
Fandom: Dark City
Music: Theme to "Sesame Street" by The Kids
Length: 1:53
Summary: Can anyone tell me how to get to Shell Beach?
Content notes: Syringes in heads, dystopia, physical and psychological manipulation, major movie spoilers.
Physical notes: For some reason, the director decided lights needed to pulse and flicker in half the scenes. I'm sorry. There's also some quick and possibly vertiginous cutting around 1:04-1:11.
Thanks: to [personal profile] deelaundry and Mr. [personal profile] deelaundry for audiencing.
A/N: For [tumblr.com profile] onewingdippedinblood for [community profile] festivids 2016-2017. Originally posted here.

Dark City is a long-favorite movie, but round after round I couldn't come up with a song to vid it to. Then, this. I don't even remember what made the Sesame Street theme occur to me, but once it did, I knew I wanted to make it. It felt like such a wonderfully discordant match, highlighting the dystopian nightmare as Murdoch tries to find his way out via Shell Beach. I had fun resisting my usual impulse to tell a clear, linear story and instead play up the confusion and glorious weirdness.

Sunny Days )


Title: Something's Going Wrong
Fandom: Waxwork (1988)
Pairing: Mark/China, Mark/Sarah, China/Dracula, Sarah/Marquis de Sade
Music: "Is She Really Going Out With Him" by Joe Jackson (edited)
Length: 3:07
Summary: Alas, poor Mark. He just wants China to like him. Or Sarah. Or any girl, really. But they keep falling for classic horror hunks.
Content notes: White male tears, a phallic weapon, whips & chains
Physical notes: Strobe lights intermittently 2:19-2:46
Thanks: to [personal profile] thedeadparrot, [personal profile] deelaundry and Mr. [personal profile] deelaundry for audiencing.
A/N: For [tumblr.com profile] onewingdippedinblood for [community profile] festivids 2016-2017. Originally posted here.

"I also ship China/Dracula and China/Stephan. And, I have such a wrongdirtybad love for Sarah/Marquis de Sade," onewingdippedinblood wrote in their Festivids letter. And you know what? So did I after watching the movie. It's too bad the vid had to be from the POV of the sadface dude character who kept trying to be smooth with the ladies and failing (and then, even worse, not failing), but I think the vid makes enough fun of him to make up for it.

(I did make a mistake, though, because I misremembered the male character's name and thought that onewingdippedinblood liked the trio featured here, when in fact they liked the two young women and one of the other guys. Oops.)

P.S. Watch the movie, it's fun. The sequel, though less well paced, also has lots of fun with intertextuality as the hero and heroine go movie hopping through Frankenstein, Alien, a Bruce Campbell thing, and more.

Waxwork )
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Title: Behind Blue Eyes
Fandom: 2001: A Space Odyssey
Music: by The Who (edited)
Length: 2:13
Summary: HAL just wants to be loved.
Content notes: Morbid humor, character death.
Physical notes: Some camera spinning and odd angles/vantages.
Thanks: to [personal profile] synn for beta comments, and also [profile] disgruntledowl and R.
A/N: A treat for [profile] cherryice for [community profile] festivids 2016-2017. Inspired in part by I Think We're Alone Now by [personal profile] sweetestdrain. Originally posted here.

Look, it just happened: I was skimming the requests list alongside my song collection, thought of this match, saw cherry's Dear Festividder letter -- "You could go against type and work with delightfully incongruous music" -- and knew I had to give it a try. Quite possibly the idea wouldn't have occurred to me if it hadn't been for sweetestdrain's Club Vivid vid cited above. Two drafts later -- after the first attempt, I felt the middle needed to be sped up more and beta watchers felt the end needed to be slowed down more -- we have this.

Slowing down music in Premiere is a b*tch, by the way; there's no time remapping feature. Possibly all you Premiere vidders know this, but I did not. Because I preferred to do it in Premiere and not, say, Audacity, I ended up cutting the audio track into pieces and slowing down each one a certain percentage more than the last, cross-fading where needed and checking the box to maintain the original pitch. Of course, not even that worked the first time, because there's a bug or something in Premiere where doing the above makes the whole edited section go mute. Turns out you have to switch the timeline settings from 44100 Hz to 48000 Hz or vice versa so it's whatever your song isn't.

Anyway, enjoy this vid that may be either hilarious or creepy depending on your POV. Personally, I cackled through making it. The slow zoom I added to HAL's eye on "to be hated" and the rise of the shuttle pod on "my dreeeeeeeeeams" are some of my favorite parts. On the creepy side, I also really like Dave's head tilting right after "vengeance."

HAL )

ETA: This vid screened at Vidukon 2017 (Festivids vid show)!
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Title: Going through space with the world
Fandom: RPF – Chris Hadfield
Music: Intro to "Act on Impulse" by We Were Promised Jetpacks
Length: 2:08
Summary: From "day in the life of an astronaut" videos to international stardom; or, Chris Hadfield and his adorable mustache.
Content notes: None.
Physical notes: The camera is generally stationary, but microgravity = lots of things float around + Hadfield often appears sideways or upside-down.
Thanks: to [personal profile] stultiloquentia for beta.
A/N: A treat for [personal profile] thirdblindmouse for [community profile] festivids 2016-2017. Title from Hadfield's TED Talk; footage from the Canadian Space Agency and other sources. Originally posted here.

This source request caught my eye during the nominations period, and after seeing tbm's Dear Festividder letter, it actually became the first vid I started making, while assignments were still being determined. I had only known Chris Hadfield from a couple of those "What happens when you wring out a washcloth in space" clips and his music video, but soon after starting research for the vid I fell for his other "how to" videos, his smiles and sense of wonder and commitment to education.

I wanted to make something that showed the expansion of joy from schoolchildren to science/space fans to celebrities and guest appearances and was on the lookout for an instrumental piece that built accordingly without being super long, so I was glad to re-stumble upon this song in an NPR guide to last year's SXSW.

And as surmised, a couple of people did guess that [profile] cherryice had made this, because science + Canada. :)

Hadfield )
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Title: She Walks In Beauty
Fandom: Let the Right One In
Pairing: Eli/Oskar
Music: by Sissel Kyrkjebø and Nicholas Dodd, adapted from the poem by Lord Byron
Length: 2:07
Summary: All that's best of dark and bright / Meet in her aspect and her eyes.
Content notes: Blood, brief gruesome injury, underage relationship.
Thanks: To [personal profile] anoel for cheering me on on Twitter, even though she didn't know this was the vid I was struggling with.
Physical notes: I don't think any.
A/N: A treat for [personal profile] quizkwatsh for [community profile] festivids 2016-2017. I'm sorry this turned out more Eli/Oskar than just Eli. Originally posted here.

This vid took four or five tries to make, including a couple of afternoons where I was ready to throw the whole thing out the window. Despite that, and even though I hadn't expected the middle sequences to feature so much linear narrative, I'm glad it finally came together; I'd been wanting to set this source to this song for a while and to try to play up the haunting quality of the refrain, the mix of horror and allure bundled together in Eli's character. I wonder if it worked for people, since the original post didn't get much feedback.

Personal favorite parts are the opening clip, Oskar making up his mind and hugging/accepting his new vampire friend as the music swells, and the cute "grr"s at the end. I had hoped to make that arm-stroking clip quite long, overlaid on the attacks, but I couldn't figure out how to do it the way I envisioned. Oh, well.

In other news, I thought this vid had "bironic" written all over it, but no one guessed me for it at the guessing post. Or rather, no one took a guess at all for it. Maybe because few people watched it? IDK. Stealth achievement unlocked?

eli )
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
I have solved the problem of effort by not actually writing out why I like these vids; will do so in comments to the vids themselves, and to the dozen+ others I enjoyed. Also, I will not say whether any vids by me are on this list.

ETA: Now with vidders' names added.

First, shoutout to To the Edge, which was made for ME by [personal profile] elipie for the French erotic thriller Stranger By the Lake. \o/ My thoughts are at the post.

OTHER FAVES, organized by FEELINGS

D:
escape the day by [personal profile] leanwellback (for quizkwatsh) - 10 Cloverfield Lane
Human by [personal profile] hollywoodgrrl (for kiki_miserychic) - The Keeping Room
Voodoo In My Blood by [personal profile] hollywoodgrrl (for evewithanapple) - The Witch

:(
English Summer Rain by [personal profile] violace (for theletterelle) - How I Live Now

:,)
Little Man by [personal profile] odessie (for Little Heaven) - How To Dad
Gone, Gone, Gone by [personal profile] fiercynn (for niyalune) - One Hundred and One Dalmatians

:,|
Battle Cry by [personal profile] thingswithwings (for himundergreen) - Luke Cage

:,(
A Better Son/Daughter by [personal profile] eruthros (for cupidsbow) - RPF - Carrie Fisher and Gary - vidder's notes

o_o
May Fortune Favor the Foolish by [personal profile] actiaslunaris (for larissabernstein) - Galaxy Quest
Two Against One by [personal profile] seekingferret (for skygiants) - Blazing Saddles

:)
Get Loud by [personal profile] heresluck (for Anoel) - Ghostbusters (2016)

<3
You're So Beautiful by [personal profile] anoel (for eruthros) - The Get Down

\o/
Tanz aus der Reihe by [personal profile] violace (for bingeling) - Ku'damm 56

:D
500 Miles by [personal profile] elipie (for such heights) - Pokémon GO

Notable especially for editing technique:
Wriggle by [personal profile] thuviaptarth (for Anoel) - UnREAL
Brooklyn Gamma by [personal profile] bingeling (for Scribe) - Killjoys


One thing I like about [community profile] festivids is the opportunity for exposure to unfamiliar movies, TV shows, graphic novels etc. So it makes me sad when people talk about skimming the masterlist for fandoms they're familiar with and then stopping there. Yes, a few of the vids will feel inaccessible, and some will be spoilery, but lots more are made to be enticing and/or to provide all the context a viewer needs.

Preaching to the choir here, maybe.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Hwooof, that was a tough week, but this weekend was the best that's happened in a while, so all's well that ends well, I guess.

(It was just a trough of stress. Political stuff, work stuff, probably body chemistry stuff. I am finally getting started with seeing a therapist and then I missed an appointment because I was so discombobulated I thought it was the next day. I had never missed a doctor's appointment before. I felt so stupid until [personal profile] deelaundry said a kind thing that hadn't occurred to me: When I said, "I look like a flake," she countered with, "You look like someone who needs help." Self-compassion is a thing it would be nice to learn.)

The good stuff:

Socializing: In support of this year's goal to get together more often with friends I like to talk to and/or want to get to know better, a few of us went to a play yesterday and had a satisfying coffee shop chat afterwards, and then I accepted an unexpected invitation to another blossoming friend's low-key Superbowl dinner. All good.

The play was called Trans Scripts, a synthesis/melding of interviews with trans women from the US/UK/Aus. It was elegant, illuminating and well acted -- two cast members were particularly strong -- although I thought it faltered in a few spots when it shifted from "showing" through anecdotes to plain proselytizing. [personal profile] marginaliana wrote up some of her thoughts.

A phone conversation the previous night:
95-year-old grandpa: Oh! I didn't expect you to be home on a Saturday night. I thought you'd be out with your friends.
Me: No, I'm boring. Well, I'm going to see a play tomorrow, but it's a matinee.
Grandpa: Oh, yeah? What is it about?
Me, bracing myself: It's based on interviews with transgender women about their lives.
Grandpa: Oh. You know, there's this woman I know from the temple, who lives with another woman, and it turns out they're--what do you call it--lesbians? Lesbians?
Me: Mm-hm!
Grandpa: So that's very interesting! I just knew them as women from the temple, you know.
#NotAllGrandpas

Doing: Had a computer-free day Saturday involving a mall run, errands and two movies. In addition to some necessaries for work and winter weather, I treated myself to a grommet-studded cut-out shirt that I probably won't wear anywhere but at home and Club Vivid (because I am me) but love anyway.

Reading: Was delighted by Unbeatable Squirrel Girl vols 1-2: plucky, witty, metatextual, intertextual, often involved the defusing of supervillainy through psychology/sympathy rather than fisticuffs. The '80s horror of Paper Girls turns out to be not as much my aesthetic, although the introduction of overlapping timestreams in vol. 2 is getting interesting.

Watching: Saw Moonlight and Lion. Loved the first and really liked the second; cried through them both; my heart aches for Chiron. Hope to see I Am Not Your Negro and Hidden Figures this week. Catching up on what I missed in Dec-Jan when too much else was going on.

Vidding: I remain in the planning stages of the two auction vids, and am figuring out if I can make the multifandom Club Vivid vid I've been preparing since the fall or if it'll need to wait another year. I watched all the [community profile] festivids -- slim masterlist this year, half the usual total -- but haven't commented on any or recced any here because I'm afraid the gaps would give away what I made, and the thought of doing fake comments/recs to throw off the scent makes me tired. I'll probably just post the rec list after reveals.

Cooking: A pleasurable week is in store of chicken breast and goat cheese sandwiches for lunch and stuffed cabbage for dinner. Also, the supermarket was selling chocolate-covered banana chips, which I didn't know was a thing but I am all over it, mm. Banana chips were such a treat when I was a kid.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Five Festivids. Five fandoms. Three and a half months. One satisfied bironic. We'll see what the recipients think this weekend.

I've only managed to make this many Festivids once before, in 2012, but that entailed three for one fandom (Big Eden) and two for another (Dead Poets Society), so this feels like an even bigger accomplishment. Part of the key was getting started early, like October early, especially given what happened in RL soon after assignments went out, and not doing anything particularly ambitious.

That brings my seven-year Festivids total to 23 vids created and 7 received. Interesting.

*

More things I can't say about these vids: )

*

I've got to call it quits now; am behind on other tasks. (Have got to stop reading the news, too, for a little while, before I become incapable of functioning.) Good luck to those of you who are still working on treats, and hooray for everyone who's looking forward to watching the glut of new vids in less than three days!
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
This general uptick in Dreamwidth activity has been great. Hello, new friending meme people! I should do an intro post soon about things I'm into these days. Tonight, though, I am packing for a trip to my mom's and more or less beta-watching a documentary by a coworker. Or—*checks clock*—possibly neither of these things. It was sort of a rough day.

Reading update: Three books came in today at the library: Binti and Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor, spurred by the monthly SF/F book club I go to, and A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women by Siri Hustvedt, which I am excited to dig into but may have to return and re-request because it's only a week-long loan and I'll be out of state when it's due back. Alas. Meanwhile, I've been picking through the e-book of Speculative Fiction 2014: The Year's Best Online Reviews, Essays and Commentary, a collection of reprints of SF/F fandom meta. [personal profile] thingswithwings is in there!

Writing update: Need to work on an essay for a zine that's coming out in the spring, since it's due at the end of January. Details TBA. It sounds like it's gonna be cool.

Vidding update: Last fall on Twitter, I asked:

I'm happy to report that the answer is Yes. In fact, I may be able to squeeze in a fifth. It depends on how it goes at my mom's (she's having surgery; I'm making no commitments), but I've rewatched the source and started laying a few clips on the timeline. It's an idea I had a few [community profile] festivids ago and never got a chance to make somebody.

If that's not vague enough for you, how about this?

Statements I can't make about Festivids in progress )
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
I don't even know what to say. You all see what's happening too.

How I've coped this week:

Reading, Watching, Sharing, Doing
I've been taking in as much news as I can handle, which varies by the evening. Since it's all too easy for me to think about things and stop there, I've also made efforts to transform that intake and mental processing into actions. Things like setting up monthly rather than annual charity donations, signing the subset of petitions that have a shot at going anywhere, and building a spreadsheet of local, state and federal representative contact information plus specific issues to thank them for supporting or urge them to oppose. I haven't psyched myself up yet to, uh, actually make the phone calls, but I'm working on it. Still unsure which outreach efforts are most effective when I live in a Democratic state with kickass reps who are already writing joint statements and introducing bills to prevent or reverse the most atrocious developments.

Working
Nobody at our office got anything done the day after the election, but by the next day I was ready to bury myself in work. My monthly productivity is now on track to be one and a half to two times normal.

Vidding
[personal profile] thedeadparrot, [personal profile] stultiloquentia and [livejournal.com profile] disgruntledowl came over at various times last weekend for communal laptopping and to talk or not-talk about our government-to-be. I made a [community profile] festivids treat draft in 24 hours and picked at a few others. Current plan: four Festivids and one Christmas vid. Ha. Ha ha ha.

Cooking
Vidding only worked as a distraction through Saturday. Sunday I tried to sit in the computer desk chair but kept drifting into the kitchen to start some other cooking or baking project. By the end of the day, there was curried pumpkin-apple soup, pumpkin bread, an onion and feta frittata, baked sweet potatoes, roasted vegetable lasagna and lemon-basil haddock with spaghetti squash. It's kept me in leftovers for the entire week, plus extras in the freezer, and one loaf of the pumpkin bread fed my coworkers.

Reading
Not much fiction. Finished the Young Miles compendium -- enjoyed the Dendarii parts, gradually lost patience with the rest -- and am wrapping up Vampire Romance 2. Starting to do proper research into the paranormal erotica short story market. I did go to book club last Thursday despite only having read a few chapters of the book months ago (The Goblin Emperor), and was glad to have done so, for the company.

Writing
Picked up a high school- into college-era (!) orig fic last night and added 1,200 words in 60 or 90 minutes, which, if you've been keeping track, is a lot for me these last few years. Want to try some more tonight and over the weekend. There is a sequence of scenes I daydreamed about back in the day that for some reason resurfaced, matured with time, a couple of nights ago, and I'm trying to get them down on the page. A sort of recovery story, years after the hurt I put the hero and heroine through: probably another form of self-comfort this month to go with the blankets and hoodies and warm drinks and toast.

Watching
Not much besides current events. [personal profile] thedeadparrot and I did go to see Arrival last Friday and it was great; haven't enjoyed a new SF movie that much since Interstellar. Oh, and Westworld. I'm still ambivalent about it but there's more to enjoy than it seemed at the beginning. This week's episode had one particularly delightful scenario and one great twist. Still, laughably Dark and frustratingly male-POV even when it's focusing on Strong Female Characters.

Dreaming
Starting last Tuesday, I went from having never dreamt about politics or politicians in my life to dreaming about them almost every night. Am ready for this phase to pass.

And so another week comes to a close. How are you all holding up?
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
1. Having [livejournal.com profile] synn for a friend. She waited in yet another line at the SPN con she's attending this weekend to get me Sebastian Roché's autograph on an 8x10 I mailed her with a homemade montage of his late '90s roles on Roar and Odyssey 5, and she took the time to email a description of how he reacted to it. ♥Longinus♥ ♥synn♥

2. Friends in general. This week included a Boston tourism day with [personal profile] alpheratz and [personal profile] seascribe, a small dinner party at a grad school classmate's house, the usual wonderful deep conversation with M. (hereafter [livejournal.com profile] disgruntledowl; she got an LJ for Yuletide!), and heckling the latest pair of Project Runway episodes with [personal profile] thedeadparrot.

Next weekend there will be a [personal profile] deelaundry; we're going to see Robert Sean Leonard in Connecticut in his latest play: Camelot.

[personal profile] alpheratz's visit reminded me to get out more to parts of the city I don't usually visit. The South End and the Back Bay segment of Comm Ave are so lovely this time of year.



3. Roasting trays of zucchini, eggplant, yam and cabbage for meal sides this week. ♥autumn♥

4. Playing with a few vids. One is an Elf vid for Xmas that I've been wanting to make for years. The others will be Festivids; TBD if assignments or treats. They are among the five-and-counting requests from people that I'd love to make, and there are still a couple of movies to watch before signups close in case they can be added to my offers. Much better than last year at this time.

5. Books to read. One enjoyable SF series: the Young Miles compendium by Bujold, beginning tomorrow, having finished Shards of Honor and Barrayar a week ago and NK Jemisin's The Obelisk Gate on Friday. One guilty pleasure: Vampire Romance 2 by assorted contributors, begun last night. (You may recall an anecdote about volume 1.) The first two stories weren't anything special, but since they were apparently publishable quality, they did make me think optimistic thoughts about generating simple beginning-middle-end ideas for marketable het paranormal romance or erotica short stories: a possible goal in the not-so-distant future. (Though it's mysterious why I think I can write a short story when I can't even finish a "one-shot" fic WIP... maybe because I wouldn't have such personal investment in the short story. TBD.)
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
This year with "sales pitch" summaries and screen shots, inspired by a friend!

Dear Festividder and anyone who might like to make a treat:

Queen Margot )

Farewell My Concubine )

Stranger by the Lake )

Gods & Monsters )

The Golem and the Jinni )

Wildlike )

Really hope you aren't looking for specific song recommendations, heh. Whatever you choose will be the right music. If you're at sea, though, here are some notes on preferences. I'm also open to spoken-word and other nontraditional forms of audio, but if you mix dialogue with music, please make the dialogue very clear/easily audible.

Of course, make whatever vid appeals to you, regardless of whether I've asked for it. We've been matched because we both like something, so whatever you choose to do with that should be wonderful. Hopefully you have an idea you'd like to pursue.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
1.

After an iffy start at the beginning of the nominations period, when it looked like there'd be hardly anything I could offer, I'm now excited about this year's Festivids. Have a handful of ideas it would be a lot of fun to make. Hope the sources end up being requested. Hope at least one of them becomes my assignment. Am preparing, optimistically.

(It wasn't until the last year or two that I learned how many nominations don't end up being requested, either because people nominate things before they've narrowed down what they want to ask for or because people nominate things they want to make and then hope they inspire someone to ask for them. At least now I know nothing is a certainty.)

Requests-wise, most of my Dear Festividder letter is ready to go. I'm going to try a "sales pitch" section for each request this year in case the summary or screen shots appeal to a participant who is not familiar with a source.

2.

Many friends have posted about how their Yuletide matches are for things they'd most wanted to write as treats, so, congratulations to you!

Nothing in the database of Yuletide letters has caught my treat-making fancy. That's a small disappointment, but it does leave more time for vidding and for working on half-done stories. Still determined to finish the Jinni/Dustfinger crossover PWP and the Inkheart foursome fic, small as those audiences will be. Did write a pleasing 1,500 words of DS9 Mary Sue a couple of weeks ago, inspired by the Damaya/Schaffa dynamic in The Fifth Season.

3.

[Warning: gross dog thing]

Last week while I was microwaving my lunch, the office puppy made hairball noises, barfed mostly undigested kibble onto the carpet, sniffed at the pile and ate it. It felt like a metaphor for how work has been going lately.

4.

On the brighter side, one morning on the way to the bus, the usually grumpy crossing guard exclaimed that someone had dropped a bag of chips and directed my attention to a cluster of pigeons pecking Bugles off the sidewalk.

5.

Been reading some stuff. We have been assigned five Vorkosigan novels for book club—so far, I have read one and a half Cordelia novels; the Young Miles compilation is next—and I'm glad to finally be experiencing and (despite Bujold's overuse of adverbs) enjoying them. The appeal so far lies in a combination of competence kink, aspirational relationship model and cross-cultural navigation, plus one particular scene that hewed deliciously close to a Mary Sue noncon scenario I adore. I also ended up really liking The Fifth Season and now have only a few days' wait until The Obelisk Gate arrives at the library.

6.

Been watching some stuff:

Last Action Hero, which, to my surprise, I thoroughly enjoyed. Cinephile boy gets magic ticket that lets him enter a movie and later lets him, the protagonist and the villain (redhead Charles Dance, no less) exit the movie into the real world. Much cheesy-delightful meta ensues, including debates about whether characters in a fictional narrative can be convinced they're in a fictional narrative, as well as a meeting at a film premiere between Arnold Schwarzenegger as the titular action hero and Arnold Schwarzenegger as the Arnold Schwarzenegger who plays the action hero.

Afterwards I rewatched the quite similar The Purple Rose of Cairo—substitute Jeff Daniels for Arnold Schwarzenegger and add more movie exec hair-tearing and misogyny—which aged well conceptually but developed a level of creepiness I did not recognize when (a) I was younger and (b) we did not know as much about Woody Allen.

I thought about requesting both movies for Festivids but really what I want is a combo/multi thing about media superfans going into and out of fictional universes (see also: Pleasantville, the holodeck, etc.) so in the end I decided I'll probably make that myself.

Luke Cage. Uneven in pacing and dramatic effectiveness, and a couple of the actors seemed to be in a different show (*cough Willis*), but I liked it overall. Mike Colter, Rosario Dawson & Theo Rossi FTW. Spectacular commentary on, and fantasies about being unharmed by, racism-driven police brutality. Mostly I wish I'd been able to watch it later and at a more leisurely pace, but I cared enough to fear being spoiled on Twitter. I also wish there were more shows like it, for obvious reasons as well as because it felt like the poor showrunners felt like they needed to cram all of contemporary Black American pop culture and Harlem history into one 13-episode show because there aren't enough opportunities elsewhere. Except, at the same time, of course it's not even close to being all of either of those things, and the seam-bursting amount of music and literature and sports references and cameos &c can as easily feel jubilant and long overdue as overstuffed. Plus, ask me how many times I Shazam'd a song or jotted down a book to check out. :)

Westworld on HBO. I had been really looking forward to this, and ended up disappointed after the first two episodes. The themes are right up my alley but the dark tone is so over the top and the "edgy" meta walks the same thin, irritating line between cleverness and exploitation as Sucker Punch and Ex Machina; nor am I sure it's making me think anything new. Too much to go into for this post, though.

Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Do not. Do not do this to yourselves. The only good thing to come out of our group heckling of this movie was our collective crossover pitch, "The Bat and the Furious," TM my friend M., in which Gisele was secretly Wonder Woman the whole time and the superheroes have to team up with Vin Diesel's crew for car reasons.

7.

Yom Kippur tonight and tomorrow. Have an easy fast, those who are fasting. ♥
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Need to write the last part of the Star Trek con report (cast panels!) but not at the moment. Just wanted to say:

(1) Started N.K. Jemisin's The Fifth Season this week. Bit of initial... what's the term for when there's a hump to get over and then things are good? Anyway, I'm enjoying it now. I was trying to figure out who this one character, Essun, reminds me of, and realized it's Chava from The Golem and the Jinni. Brief elaboration. I don't consider this a spoiler but just in case; mentions vague stuff from <75 pages in. ) It's got me picturing Essun as large-framed now, even though I don't think her physique was described.

(2) Been watching movies again, both features and documentaries and in one case a blend of the two (Jafar Panahi's Taxi). Was surprised and delighted by how much I enjoyed this one movie, Wildlike, starring Bruce Greenwood and Ella Purnell. It found a whole panel of my buttons and pressed them. plot description, could be considered spoilery? ) I clutched my hands to my chest in joy during the last maybe ten minutes. And then the credits rolled to one of my favorite Alexi Murdoch songs. ♥ I don't even know what to do with my happiness about it besides luxuriate in it and read reviews. There's no fic to read, I don't think I have a fic in me to write, a vid wouldn't add anything, and rewatching the movie wouldn't replicate the experience.

(3) Still thinkin' about [community profile] festivids requests. I've got four movies (Queen Margot, Stranger by the Lake, Farewell My Concubine, Gods and Monsters) and one book (The Golem and the Jinni ♥), but am stumped on the last. This year I really only want to ask for things where any one of them would feel like my top choice if I got it. Haven't figured out a sixth one that would match the others. :/ Priest, maybe? The Linus Roache one, I mean. Not sure.

Are any of you asking for movies? Maybe there's something I can watch in the coming weeks to expand my repertoire of offers.

(4) Meta rec: On the Subject of Noncon Fanworks: Thoughts of a Reader, Writer, Survivor by Anarfea. Spectacularly cogent, moving essay about personal history, the difficulty of untangling experienced abuse from a penchant for power exchange/rape fantasy, the internal and external conflicts that happen before and after writing and posting a noncon story, noncon fic tagging and shaming in Sherlock fandom and beyond, and more. I'm out of oomph so if you are curious about my personal reaction just scroll down to my comment on her post. h/t to [twitter.com profile] krytella and [twitter.com profile] lurrel for the link.

Anticlimax

Aug. 30th, 2016 09:12 pm
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Title applies to:

1) The conclusion of His Dark Materials. I might have tossed The Amber Spyglass across the floor in distaste if [personal profile] par_avion hadn't warned me at Vividcon about a thing that was going to happen. Then again, by the end of the series we'd grown so distanced from the main characters that the plot direction might not have affected me deeply anyway. As it was, it... ended, and that was that.

2) Kidney stone situation. I've been pain-free for a week now, but didn't see a stone come out, so either it got ground to sand and I missed it, or it's lying in wait. Doc says to finish the remaining 2 1/2 weeks of Flomax and then maybe safe to believe I'm in the clear. TMI. Meanwhile, back to normal activities.

Miscellany:

Doing: Being (temporarily? permanently?) recovered means that I can still go to the Mission: New York Star Trek convention this weekend with iggy. Am getting especially excited about seeing all the DS9 cast members who will be there -- René Auberjonois, Armin Shimerman, Nana Visitor, Terry Farrell, Michael Dorn, Cirroc Lofton -- only two of whom I've met before (René a couple of times at Broadway theaters and Dorn once at a con). There will be panels with cast reunions and organizers of the first Trek convention and show/novel writers and queer fans and fans of color and scientists/engineers who were inspired by the series, a table read of ST IV: The Voyage Home, props and sets and a cosplay contest, etc. =/\=

I printed recent-ish head shots of the three DS9 cast members who won't be there, with the plan of bringing them to the group photo I signed up for. Now every time I pass my desk, Alexander Siddig is there smiling at me.

Reading: Currently between books. Plowed through the Captive Prince trilogy while ill and it was just the right story for that headspace. Tried Brandon Sanderson's The Way of Kings last night/today but got bored, and that ginormous, 1,000-page hardcover is not worth lugging around for a boring narrative. Was not surprised to discover a blurb from Patrick Rothfuss on the back. Fortunately, NK Jemison's The Fifth Season is winging its way over to the library.

Writing: A thing for work, but daydreaming about ficlets and Yuletide treats. His Dark Materials gave me another Dustfinger (Inkheart) idea, in addition to the three fics already posted and the two WsIP. It went like this at brunch on Sunday:

me: It's perfect: Dustfinger has a marten; Lyra has a marten. I just want the martens to sniff each other.
[personal profile] unfinishedidea: *cracks up*
me: What?
[personal profile] unfinishedidea: You do you.

I will do me, thank you. :) Here, have a Lyra/Iorek fic I found on the AO3: Native and Non-Native Fauna of the North by gishmi1ish. It's distractingly formatted and a bit rushed, but pushes some xeno buttons nonetheless.

Vidding: Thinking about Festivids nominations. I watched Queen Margot again last week and continue to yearn for a vid for it. If it still doesn't get matched this year, I may have to do it myself.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Second, I made... this, whatever it is, as a treat for sol_se. IDEK. Once I saw the third movie, I knew this vid had to exist.

Title: He Drives Me Crazy
Fandom: Night at the Museum series
Pairing: Larry the night guard/Dexter the capuchin
Rating: PG-13
Music: "She Drives Me Crazy" by Fine Young Cannibals (edited)
Length: 2:10
Content/physical notes: Temporary character death (animal); implied zoophilia.
A/N: For [personal profile] sol_se on the occasion of Festivids 2015-2016. Originally posted here and here.

Embed, lyrics )

Comments and concrit are always welcome as I try to improve my vidding.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
I made two Festivids this year. First, here was my actual assignment.

Title: Sailboats
Fandom: Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World
Pairing: Jack Aubrey/Stephen Maturin
Rating: PG
Music: by Brooke Fraser (edited)
Length: 2:12
Summary: A love song and a lullaby.
Content/physical notes: None, I don't think.
Acknowledgements: Thanks to R. and [personal profile] cinco for watching the first draft and assuring me that the song wasn't too saccharine.
A/N: Made for Festivids 2015-2016 for [personal profile] rhivolution, who wanted some Aubrey/Maturin in love at sea. Originally posted here and here.

Embed, lyrics )

I'd never vidded something this sweet before, which made me nervous; but friends gave reassuring beta feedback, and here we are. The sequence where Stephen pulls the bit of shrapnel out of Jack's neck still feels awkward to me -- I would've preferred something about Stephen's doctoring in general, playing on the "your love is healing" line, including poor little what's his name who lost his arm, but I just couldn't make the available footage work -- but I really like the quiet nighttime sequence, Jack and Stephen's introductions, the crew singing, and, as rhi requested, the clips of their duets toward the end.

Comments and concrit are always welcome as I try to improve my vidding.
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
My memories of this round will be:
  • Impressive vids of atypical source material (comics, paintings, theatrical performances, social movements)
  • Lots of space-centric vids -- at least 14
  • Being happier with the vid I received than with the vids I made
There are some I haven't watched for spoiler reasons (Pride, Push, Gone Girl), and some I didn't get far into for purely subjective reasons like music choice and cut/transition style. But in general here are my top 20.

Vid recs behind the cut )
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Festivids is live, and I'm sure there are lots of fabulous vids in the collection, but it almost doesn't matter, because my wonderful amazing like-minded anonymous Festividder [personal profile] franzeska made me the vid I was most hoping for of all my requests, and life is beautiful.

It is for the 1992 movie A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia, in which Alexander Siddig (Prince Faisal of Syria & Iraq) and Ralph Fiennes (T.E. Lawrence) engage in intricate post-WWI politics while sharing gorgeous smoldering gazes.

(You barely need the "sub" in subtext, seriously. Look, even Wikipedia acknowledges: "The film goes further than its predecessor in showing the effects of revisionist historians. It demonstrates contemporary concerns about British and international politics and ethnic conflict. It also explores further Lawrence's enigmatic personality and suggests more openly his alleged homosexuality.")

Go go go: They Are Afraid of Us Together

And how perfect is that title, when Lawrence & Faisal are a powerful team who also threaten British/Western/white hegemony by crossing racial boundaries? How perfect and beautiful is the Persian love song -- poem, really -- [personal profile] franzeska selected?

Aaaah, it just makes me so happy. Look at those two. Look at Lawrence looking at Faisal in those film reels. Look at them so utterly in love with each other and tearing themselves to pieces over their choices and the bigotry of & backstabbing by those around them. Look at those eyes and those hands and that intensity.

I haven't seen the movie in more than 10 years. Need to track down a copy and rewatch, in order to better appreciate the nuances of the story here.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
bironic: Neil Perry gazing out a window at night (Default)
Writing

Conversation at fannish brunch on Saturday turned to holiday fic and vid exchanges, as tends to happen this time of year. People persuaded me to skim the Yuletide requests spreadsheet, in which I discovered not one but two prompts that are right up my alley. The first was so intriguing, in fact, that I couldn't stop spinning out in my head how the story might go and started writing it the next day. It's now about 1,500 words and growing. Yay.

Want to write the other treat as well. It will take some thinking, but the discovery that a second person out in the world wants this story to exist may ensure that it happens.

This will be the first time I've participated in Yuletide. Feels strange.

Vidding

This will be the… fifth? sixth year I've done [community profile] festivids, and my assignment vid is drafted, which may be the earliest that's ever happened.

Somewhere between one and four treats for various recipients are on the docket now. Guess it depends in part on how long the Yuletide stuff takes.

Going

Mixed feelings about traveling for Thanksgiving this year. With luck, there will be downtime for writing. At least I will get to see [personal profile] par_avion and then a room full of [personal profile] no_detective, [personal profile] ahab, [personal profile] linaerys, [personal profile] scribblinlenore, [profile] barely_bean, [profile] krisdia, [personal profile] stlkrchck etc. Rumor has it there will be Magic Mike XXL and pie.

Watching

Season 6 of the Vampire Diaries on Netflix. Still flawed, but overall less boring than it has been in the past, and scarier, with the introduction of victim-stalking human killer Kai. Having fun superimposing Wanda and Pietro from MCU onto Liv and Luke.

Looking forward to checking out Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter's faaaace on my TVVVV) and The Man in the High Castle but probably not for a little while.

Have also been watching/rewatching stuff for Festivids in the interstices. At some point will get back to Gilmore Girls, but S6 has been kind of tiresome.

Dealing

RL updates can wait for their own posts.

Thinking of you all and hope you are well. ♥ ♥

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