The Grammys, television, Arcade Fire, and la Jetee

So I failed to post this weekend, which means that I haven’t posted anything new in a few days. Not too happy about that…

I’ll be leaving you with a short, self-indulgent post mostly of my rambling this morning; I’m at EyeSteelFilm and have a lot of work to do today. Things are good here, I am learning a lot and proud to say that I will have spent some time with such a great young production company. I love their focus on social, personal documentaries, I love their values and I like their humility as they face it all.

I don’t have cable to watch television. I have a nice big flat screen t.v that I use to watch my dvds and not much else. I have always had an addiction problem with television. It was always one of those things where I lost myself in the simple passivity of it all. I could spend hours watching nothing, hating it, knowing so and not being able to stop myself. It’s just too easy. There are things I miss about it. I feel slightly disconnected at times, although I do keep up with current events by reading local, national and international papers on the internet as much as I can. I also listen to CBC radio 1 every morning. But there is an undeniable appeal to watching the evening news and its crisp vibrant image. It seems more real, although, it’s probably the very opposite. An engaging image, vivid and exciting, is what drives television news today: it is what sells. Print and radio must still, to some extent make sure their content is information rich. These are generalizations of course, but television news has in my mind deteriorated more than the other 2 traditional mediums. If it isn’t visually exciting and graphic, it’s rabid, biased, ideological hedonists raging away at their similarly opinionated opponent(literally). Again this is a generalization, but unfortunately, there’s too much of it, and it’s, ironically, dumbing down political and social debate around the world. So much rhetoric, so little reflection…

That being said, my other problem with regular cable is that the content is horrible… There was never anything to watch, other than sports if you liked them, and occasionally a documentary channel piece, or a rerun of Seinfeld…

I would have liked to see Arcade Fire winning the Grammys last night though. Their first full album, Funeral, had a greater impact on me than any other album. It arrived at the perfect time in my life, and I was lucky to be able to see them live in smaller venues before they blew up. I am very happy for them that they won. These awards are not a proper measure of talent, they are narrow minded, focused on big corporate backed musical acts, and frankly don’t represent the rich musical scene that is out there. But, occasionally, there’s some good stuff, and last night, with Neil Young winning best rock song( songs alright, but career’s magical), and The Suburbs, best album, something exciting took place and I am happy about it.

I’m working on a photo-narrative project inspired by La Jetee, a short video piece by Chris Marker, a mysterious french video artist. The piece inspired the wonderful Terry Gilliam movie 12 Monkeys and is a series of photographs telling a science fiction story with narration. It’s great. I haven’t watched it in a while, and I don’t want to watch it until my video piece is finished. I don’t want it to influence the piece too much. That being said, my concept is not exactly in line with La Jetee, other than the fact that I’m using pictures instead of video or film.
Perhaps, if I like it, I’ll share it with you.


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