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Delirious With Weird

Friday, June 06, 2003  
Magical realism in film? What are the dangers of super realism? Fargo claimed "this is a true story" and one Japanese woman took this for honesty when in fact it was a device... Did she?

No sense of the outside world? The inverse-sublimation device that causes you to really become the centre of your little solipsistic world; there is no outside world! Only these walls and this compound and this dead half-italian who can't remember the Cub Scouts' promise. But what about the opposite? What about Fargo? What about the japanese woman who went digging in the North Dakota woods for the loot? Who died in search of a myth that she thought was a given? From Tokyo too, not some village displaced from Osaka, from Tokyo, the fastest, busiest, hyper-metropolis. Where children seek counselling when Tamogotchis die. Maybe that's it. Where David Beckham is a deity. Where Fargo is real; or is it? Where people still hurt. A very interesting piece in The Guardian today about this.

Of course the irony of this story is that the real confusion of fact and fiction, the real submission to the desire to have the moments of one’s life follow each other in an orderly fashion like those of a life remembered, to submit to the story, to be guided, to be carried along within the narrative of- of what? Of anything… The real confusion of life and non-life is not Takako’s. The confusion belongs to a police officer and a journalist and a receptive media-led public, eager to believe in the fallible, fractious minds of others, in the schizophrenia that must lead to the blurring of lines between fact and fiction. Takako’s act was not a deluded hunt for mythical loot. It was the snow-hidden suicide of a desperately unhappy woman, a jilted lover exiling herself to a cold and foreign world to die near her spurning love. And one woman’s true unhappiness is never a story.

Things rocking Nick's world this week include...

* Gillian Welch. I Dream A Highway - five minutes in you want it to continue; 7 and you think it could, should finish; 9 and you think it's too much, want it to stop; 12, 13, 14 and you're glad it didn't. I'm still not sure what it means, not explicitly. But I don't think that matters particularly. The new album seems to be turning a light on and I have responded to it in much the same way as I did Polly Jean's last album, which seemed to me to do a similar thing.

* Watchmen. New X-Men and E Is For Extinction disappointed me, as trying to revist childhood always does. Watchmen is on a different level. I look forward to The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

* Four Tet.

* The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. Beyond all the guff and hippy-speak and accoutrements there is something there.

* Jorge Luis Borges; at least, the anticipation of finishing the book directly above so I can get onto reading Fictions is rockling my world.

* Cayenne pepper. In every meal. Or not. No, not.

* British Sea Power, and in particular The Lonely from their debut album.

6/06/2003 02:01:00 pm


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Nick Southall is Contributing Editor at Stylus Magazine and occasionally writes for various other places on and offline. You can contact him by emailing auspiciousfishNO@SPAMgmail.com

All material © Nick Southall, 2003/2004/2005