Thursday, October 22, 2015

Fragility #1

image: Olivia Bee

"The foundations of our lives are far more fragile than we think. So we are severely shaken when life turns out to have a will of its own."
Susanne Bier talking about her sublime cinematic tragedies.

image: Kate Bellm

Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Warmth #3

Some more of the images I've taken in the past year trying to navigate the world and locations of an unmade film... in this case, The Warmth, a feature about a young man from the Australian wheatbelt who becomes immersed in an unfamiliar world of sensation, desire and loss in the remote north of Colombia while trying to find traces of his missing sister. Following the slow paths of development, keeping the film alive becomes an art form in itself.

"a fever is a secret thing" - Don DeLillo


This song, over and over...


Between Here and There - A Temple in Chiang Mai

Between Here and There - A Wall in Cartagena


Why bother talking about love?

Why bother talking about the possibilities of cinema? Or of the novel?

Why bother talking about the transcendent, transformative possibilities of desire?

Why bother taking photographs unless from a distance, or in reflections, or with obscured foregrounds that make it impossible for us to meet the eye of whatever is the object of stealth?

Why bother talking unless it is in circles, laying out trickery and riddles like crumbs?

Why bother with thought unless it is fragmentary rather than the consistent intensity of deep, meditative reflection?

Why not procrastinate when it is concentration that is needed?

Why bother with all of this? Why stare into the eyes of your loved ones when it's their naked body you want to adore? Why try talk of hearts and needs when it is laughter you're looking for?

Perhaps it has something to do with what Milan Kundera writes in 'Laughable Loves':
“Why in fact should one tell the truth? What obliges us to do it? And why do we consider telling the truth to be a virtue? Imagine that you meet a madman, who claims that he is a fish and that we are all fish. Are you going to argue with him? Are you going to undress in front of him and show him that you don't have fins? Are you going to say to his face what you think?...If you told him the whole truth and nothing but the truth, only what you thought, you would enter into a serious conversation with a madman and you yourself would become mad. And it is the same way with the world that surrounds us. If I obstinately told the truth to its face, it would mean that I was taking it seriously. And to take seriously something so unserious means to lose all one's own seriousness. I have to lie, if I don't want to take madmen seriously and become a madman myself.”
Or perhaps it has to do with what he wrote in 'The Book of Laughter and Forgetting
“It takes so little, so infinitely little, for a person to cross the border beyond which everything loses meaning: love, convictions, faith, history. Human life -- and herein lies its secret -- takes place in the immediate proximity of that border, even in direct contact with it; it is not miles away, but a fraction of an inch.”
Perhaps. Either way, why bother thinking about it when you only want to laugh in it's face.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Between Here and There - A Skyrise Hotel Somewhere

Between Here and There - Gridlock

We could wait here forever

this noise and heat... the murmuring of those two lovers, frustrated but still warm with tenderness. or the quiet grind of that young woman in front, stealing a moment to eat and think

the hum... the singing hum that courses overhead and across the wet, gleaming streets...

those gleaming, slackened faces glimpsed in passing, softer than Walker Evan's photos of the hard faces of transit subway passengers, harder than the faces of those engaged in the gentle exchanges taking place in the back of the closed cabs racing to dinner or home for the possibility of an embrace

the flash of light across their eyes reminding me of that beautiful face I'll never forget, flickering in the lights of a traffic tunnel cutting under a mountain too large to traverse 

let all those lights glow and gleam
let the traffic burn and hum
let all those strange bodies and lives pass us by and stay safe and find, when they arrive, some small, beautiful thing to make this seething mess feel like a journey with one single focus... you

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Between Here and There - Bordeaux Nights

 "Find people who think like you and stick with them. Make only music* you are passionate about. Work only with people you like and trust. Don't sign anything."
Steve Albini
(*or, just maybe, whatever else you've got your hands into, especially film)

Sunday, September 13, 2015


Three thoughts from my personal cartographer Roberto Bolaño​ to guide me through the wilderness.

“While we are looking for the antidote or the medicine to cure us, that is, the 'new', which can only be found by plunging deep into the Unknown, we have to go on exploring sex, books, and travel, although we know that they lead us to the abyss, which, as it happens, is the only place where the antidote can be found.” 
“Probably all of us, writers and readers alike, set out into exile, or at least into a certain kind of exile, when we leave childhood behind...The immigrant, the nomad, the traveler, the sleepwalker all exist, but not the exile, since every writer becomes an exile simply by venturing into literature, and every reader becomes an exile simply by opening a book.” 
“What a sad paradox, though Amalfitano. Now even bookish pharmacists are afraid to take on the great, imperfect, torrential works, books that blaze the path into the unknown. They choose the perfect exercises of the great masters. Or what amounts to the same thing: they want to watch the great masters spar, but they have no interest in real combat, when the great masters struggle against that something, that something that terrifies us all, that something that cows us and spurs us on, amid blood and mortal wounds and stench.” 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Warmth #2

A visual note from Costeño nights:

“Sometimes, when one is moving silently through such an utterly desolate landscape, an overwhelming hallucination can make one feel that oneself, as an individual human being, is slowly being unraveled. The surrounding space is so vast that it becomes increasingly difficult to keep a balanced grip on one's own being. The mind swells out to fill the entire landscape, becoming so diffuse in the process that one loses the ability to keep it fastened to the physical self. The sun would rise from the eastern horizon, and cut it's way across the empty sky, and sink below the western horizon. This was the only perceptible change in our surroundings. And in the movement of the sun, I felt something I hardly know how to name: some huge, cosmic love.”
Haruki Murakami

Monday, March 16, 2015

The Warmth #1

In the midst of researching a new film project for a script I wrote a few years back which has been sitting on hold while I've been lost in other things. We've been seeking financing for this project - The Warmth - for a while but as things have slowed down, I've decided to jump off to the location of the film, the northern coast of Colombia, to see if I can't speed things up again. So, here I am, trying to make the film for the first time in my mind. It's working. I like this film. I have no idea if it will be what I hope once it is remade for the seventieth time with a camera and crew and actors, but at the moment it's got everything I need in it.