Well the easter holiday is over, and I am about to return to university to sit my exams. I have done an incredible wealth of things in the past four weeks, and had a wonderful time. Here's some of the things I've read/seen/listened to. More in-depth descriptions can be found here 2009 edit: the in-depth descriptions are also available below.
- Apocalypso - Robert Rankin
- 1984 - George Orwell
- Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? - PKD
- the Cuckoo's Egg - Cliff Stoll
- Interzone - Various
- Rendezvous with Rama - Arthur C. Clarke
- The Delgados
- 80s Matchbox B-Line Disaster
- War of the Worlds - Jeff Wayne
- The White Stripes
- Radiohead - Hail to the Thief
- Saturn 3
- The Thing
- Being John Malkovich
- Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
- The Perfect Storm
- My Little Eye
2009 Edit: remarkably torpor.net still exists. However, just for the sake of completion, here is the text I originally wrote there.
Apocalypso - Robert Rankin
My first foray into Rankin's bizarre corner of the fantasy market. The book started off a bit slow, and the slapstick prose got on my nerves somewhat, but when the pace picked up and a story developed I enjoyed myself more.
1984 - George Orwell
I loved this book. So much is described with so little dialogue. The second half of the book was tense, disturbing and very well written. This book was all the more poignant given the events in Iraq as I was reading.
do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? - PKD
As I have been told, not a lot in common with the film. The second book I have read by Philip K Dick, this one was more digestable than the previous (The man who japed); perhaps because it is newer. The elements in this book which aren't in the film are some of the most interesting, bizarrely enough.
the Cuckoo's Egg - Cliff Stoll
A very detailed account of a cracker's run through Laurence Berkeley Laboratories computer network, and Milnet. This book was easy to finish (took me one day, I couldn't put it down) which was a relief considering the technical subject matter. Provided some insight into the security problems of the day, which contrast interestingly with the ones we face at present.
Interzone - Various
Some wonderful short stuff from Interzones published throughout 2002, in particular fantasy by the Croatian author Zoran Zivkovic. His tale of a violinist's song detailing the meaning of life, and a professor attempting to convey the message in italian (the closest language he could get to a violin) to his baffled bedside attendant whilst dying was terrific.
Rendezvous with Rama - Arthur C. Clarke
A finely detailed story about a gigantic hollow cylinder-planet hurtling through the solar system. Cardboard characters, but the situation and descriptions left me with a sense of wonder.
I'll not write descriptions of this stuff, for sake of brevity.
A good film, and a reasonably faithful adaptation of the book, but there is a huge amount of stuff missing. I watched this with my brother and my friend Daniel, neither of whom had read the book.
So-so sci-fi film from the 60s, about a murderous robot and three humans on a research facility, in a communications black out. Starring Farrah Fawcett, Kirk Douglas and another guy. My Sci-Fi encyclopaedia just says 'miss' for this films description, but it wasn't that bad. I remember watching the beginning when I was 8. The space effects are fairly shoddy, but the station itself was wall produced.
Good special effects. Definitely a source of inspiration for resident evil. I would like to know where the literary roots come from - I'm guessing H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulu stuff, but I've never read it so I'm not sure.
Being John Malkovich
Ace film. Bizarre plot, with some very odd sex scenes. The best part was Charlie Sheen playing himself.
Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
Clooney directorial debut. Brad Pitt cameo (I think Matt Damon cameo's too, not sure). Had a 'fight club' feel to it. Some maniac sex fiend TV producer is a CIA hitman on the side. I quite enjoyed it.