Bad enough that Sean Penn looks leathery, but apparently he’s been slathered with brown shoe polish.
When I was a kid, my parents took me to see a legal drama called And Justice for All. Its high point, which was also its low, was defense attorney Al Pacino yelling and foaming at the mouth at the judge: “You’re outta order! You’re outta order!” He was led out of the courtroom, but not before every Pinoy mume-Method actor had resolved to recreate that scene in his own movies (and harvested awards for it). Al has defined screen pyroclastics in films like Scarface and Carlito’s Way. When he cuts loose, you want to open an umbrella to protect yourself from getting drenched in flying spittle. (Apparently you’re supposed to do this at his theatre performances.) And yet I maintain that his deranged intensity was essential to those movies: you cannot be an understated cokehead megalomaniac. The derangement was the character. In Sean Penn’s case he will scream, contort his face, display his neck veins and threaten to go full Scanners for no other reason than to show that he is a Great Actor. In some movies, it works. In other movies, it begs to be tasered.
A disgraced outcast samurai living in early seventeenth-century Manila, Kitazume is contemplating ritual suicide when a divine force (of a sort) intervenes: Luis, a rogue Jesuit priest and Kitazume’s longtime friend. At Luis’s insistence, the samurai agrees to help smuggle a Manchu princess to Mexico. But little does he know that he’s really been dragged into an epic struggle for power.
Several forces have their malicious sights set on the New World’s rich silver mines: an insurgent Spanish duke, Chinese political interests, and the escaped African slaves known as the cimarrónes. And working in secret among them is a mysterious, long-lost order that has its own plans for the precious metal.
As politics and greed collide, Kitazume must call upon his deadly skills once more. But he’s not just fighting to save his friends–he’s fighting for the redemption he so desperately craves.
Neal Stephenson’s brilliant novel Cryptonomicon is set partly in the Philippines.
By Grand Central Station I sat down and wept under three flags.
All that is love among the chickens.
While the women are sleeping, dancing lessons for the advanced in age.
When will there be good news?
March 20, 2015By: jessicazafra Category: Television
Mamet, Kirke, Dunham and Williams of Girls. More grist for hate-watchers: They are all children of famous people.
I was so repelled by the characters that I had to watch the next episode in the hope that they had fallen onto some train tracks. And the next one, and the one after that. By the fourth episode, I got it. The terrible decisions Hannah and her friends made, their cringe-making delusions and defenses: they were the point of Girls. Yes, it’s about four young women making their way in the world—note SATC reference in the pilot—but with their flaws intact and on aggressive display. They’re imperfect and they offer no apologies.