Well, it has been a while since I have posted anything on this blog (okay, I have already posted a couple of things, but that was because I finally had some time to sit down and go over one of the old posts I had sitting there waiting to be published and have finally gotten around to finishing a second one that was partially written while sitting on a plane between Singapore and Frankfurt), but now that I have returned to Australia and have some more free time (namely because I have discovered that when I am travelling the last thing that I really want to do is write blog posts because they can actually be pretty time consuming) to actually go back to publishing stuff on my blog, and what better way to start it off again than to publish a review of a play that I saw in London. Actually, when I’m in London I tend to make a habit of seeing as many plays as possible, though I have to be honest that the whole ‘West-End experience’ is starting to get a bit dry. In a way, it seems that the plays, and musicals, that appear in the major theatres in Theatreland are pretty much the mainstream, but then again having seen Wicked and Les Miserables three times already I’m not in a huge rush to go and see it again.
Well, after finishing off my post regarding a counter-factual scenario in which the Soviet Union didn’t collapse my creative juices continued to fire, once again thanks to the Alternate History Hub. Once again it is a scenario that stems out of the Cold War, however, instead of seeing how the Soviet Union could have avoided its collapse, we will instead be posing the question as to how could have the tables have been turned and the United States end up on the losing side.
Honestly, I not even all that sure as to why I’m writing a blog post on this movie – it isn’t as if it was any good. Okay, it is one of those movies that is trying to make a point and forcing people to think about the house of cards that the modern financial world has become, however, I personally don’t think that it succeeds – at all. The thing is that Money Monster is what you would call a ‘Hostage Taker’ movie – some guy bursts into a room and takes everybody hostage, and through the movie the hostages and the hostage-taker begin to develop a close relationship.
Classic Stockholm syndrome stuff.
Normally I don’t go and see all that many, if any, contemporary plays (namely plays that have been written during my life-time), and after seeing Hangmen I realised why – they tend to be quite boring. Okay, I probably shouldn’t bag this particular play too much, however, despite it being English black comedy (which tends to be really good), the play itself didn’t hold my interest all that much. The main reason that I went and saw it (and it was one of the National Theatre Live productions by the way) was that it was advertised at another film/play that I saw recently (As You Like It) and it looked quite interesting (and it also gave me an excuse to get out of the house for a while, since I tend to travel all the way to Brighton to see these film/plays).
Naomi Klein certainly doesn’t mince her words, but another thing she does is that she does not publish endless numbers of books saying the same thing over and over again. When she publishes a book she will say everything that she wants to say on the topic once, and once only. In her latest project, she once again takes the hyper-capitalist economic system squarely in her sights (which is a constant theme in her books) and exposes how they are destroying the world.
Imagine being a little boy who has grown up knowing only one world, and one thing, and then suddenly discovering that this whole world is actually a lie. In fact, imagine being a little boy of about the age of 10 who has grown up being told that a certain people are horrid demonic monsters, only to discover that, once again, this is all a lie. Well, not even that, but actually meeting somebody who completely dispels this whole concept that has been fed to you all of your life.
One of the interesting things about the Andy Warhol exhibition that I attended was that they combined it with the art of a more contemporary artist – Ai Wei Wei. Mind you, the main reason that I wanted to go to the exhibition was simply because of Warhol and to be honest I wasn’t really interested in seeing any other artist alongside him. I guess if there was one thing about this exhibition is that Ai Wei Wei seemed to be intruding upon it a little too much. That doesn’t necessarily mean that he isn’t any good – he does have his own interesting style, and he also has some very confronting artwork, however, it wasn’t Ai Wei Wei I went to see, it was Andy Warhol (and if you are interested, here is a link to my post on Warhol).
I had just managed to make my way through this book a second time, namely because I wanted to write a review of it on Goodreads (and Booklikes), and while it was pretty rushed, I had decided that I would leave it at that and move on to my next book (and project). However, as I am prone to do, I read through some of the other reviews of Goodreads (such as this one, this one, and this one) when I realised that I simply couldn’t just leave it at that scrappy piece of work that I wrote up on the train on my way home from work. Okay, while I have covered several points, albeit briefly, I suddenly realised that there is so much more to this book that I had to continue with my exposition on this blog.
Once again I watched a movie that when I started writing a review on IMDB I realised that there was a lot more that I could say about the film than I could easily fit in one of its posts (and even then those post are more for reviews of the film than actually deeply exploring the ideas that come out of the film, not that I actually don’t do that since it is better for me to jump over to my blog to explore the themes). Anyway, The Big Short is based upon a book of the same name and is about some Wall Street traders who predict the coming collapse of the housing market in the United States and decided to bets against this with the purpose of making a profiting (which is what Wall Street traders do). The movie follows these four people from when fund manager Michael Burry first identifies a problem within the market to when the US government bails out the banks.
Once again I was watching one of those really informative videos on the Alternate History Channel (and I will embed the video, as I usually do, below) and it fueled my imagination – this time in regards to the Russian Revolution. However, as I was thinking about how I would tackle this I suddenly realised that so many different things could have happened that would have had a significant effect upon the way the modern world would turn out, it is difficult to simply take just one path.