July 04, 2006

Weekend entertainment

A few days of entertainment highs and lows to while away the wintry days here. There is a lot of sunshine around but temperatures plummet to almost freezing at night, so indoor activities and fun are what was called for and that is what we got:

The world cup soccer quarter finals: the Brazilian show ponies beaten by "Les Vieux" was excellent breakfast time watching. Surely "Le Marseillaise" is the only national anthem that is sung by the crowds in the stands after kick-off - and thus the measure of a true battle hymn. The French don't need god to defend themselves, like New Zealand does, "les enfants" will do nicely.
I'm behind Portugal now, they got the best looking team left in the competition and I always back the smallest country. And also because of the really ugly incident involving Wayne Rooney who deliberately kicked Ricardo Carvalho viciously in the gonads. It was in a street brawling tradition best left to the back streets of Manchester, so that f***en ugly chav ("Nobby Stiles with teeth", as one wag called him) should crawl back to his hovel and be banned from the game for a good time. If only he handled the football as expertly as he can kick Portuguese boy balls his team might have gone a bit further. But he was obviously wanting to go home anyway.

Jericho (The Killing of Johnny Swann episode, sorry spoilers follow): now I always wanted to be cabin boy to Robert Lindsay's Captain Pellew aboard HMS Indefatigable in "Hornblower", but now Robert Lindsay is even more terrific in "Jericho", a marvellously atmospheric series set in 1950s Soho London. It only took till the second episode for the underground gay world being the story, complete with "speakeasy" type back street gay bars featuring tragic drag queens and effeminate stagehands. Having Mancunian athletic but pretty boy William Ash (from "Burn It") playing the closet queen was inspired casting despite the storyline being a bit cliche and dodgy: the closet queen is of course the murderer, he can't live a happy life and ultimately has to die too. How very "Celluloid Closet"!

Speedway Junky (1999): A Dickensian tale set in contemporary Las Vegas, with very spunky Jesse Bradford (also seen in all his naked torso glory in "Swimfan") trying to get his portion of the American dream, as in "rugged individualism and trampling on everybody gets you to the top" kind of ideology, but he is actually completely depending for survival on his newly adopted "family" of gay hustlers and former prostitutes. A sort of David Copperfield in the desert. Bleak and terribly tragic, but oh so slightly annoying by the cop out at the end. Terrific dialogue though (via About Gay Movies):
Steven: So, you completely straight or what?
Johnny: Of course, yeah aren't you?
Steven: Well, personally, I dig that but, but when it comes to work it is simply a matter of cashflow.
Eric: See, Steven is bisexual. Buy him something and have sex.
Steven: I'm a businessman, Johnny, the customer always 'comes' first
And tonight "Shameless" starts on UK TV. Bless the Gallagher family!

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