The documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop displays the tag "A Banksy film," marking it a production of the enigmatic British street artist and political provocateur. Banksy's prankish creativity works on a much larger scale than the typical graffiti artist armed with spray paint. Exit Through the Gift Shop shows Banksy and his accomplices steal a London phone box, slice it in half, reconstruct it at a right angle and return it to its original corner, like a sprawled corpse left in a pool of blood.
During the film, Banksy only appears on camera in stylized shadows or with his face and voice distorted. Still, he grants viewers a glimpse behind the curtain. At one point, he reveals handfuls of pound notes from a prank gone wrong. Banksy printed fake currency with the face of Princess Di instead of the Queen, but before he could use it to tweak the masses for their materialism, he realized that, when crumpled up, the ersatz money could be mistaken for the real thing. Unwittingly, he'd forged a half a million pounds.
(Photo courtesy Banksy Films)
"What happened to your hand?" adulterous wife Carla Smith (Claire van der Boom) asks her unsavory husband Greg (Anthony Hayes) early on in The Square. Greg shrugs at his bandaged fingers and replies, "Just a bit of mischief," not realizing Carla has discovered his mysterious satchel of ill-gotten money.
"Mischief" understates the various characters' misdeeds in Australian Nash Edgerton's The Square, which cover nearly every possible crime and misdemeanor, from construction kickbacks and arson to much, much worse. Edgerton's sharp, moody film noir could be titled The Building Contractor Always Rings Twice as Carla and her married lover Ray (David Roberts) scheme to steal Greg's money and abandon their spouses. They enlist a petty criminal (Joel Edgerton, the director's brother and co-writer) to set a fire to cover the theft, but things spin out of control almost immediately.
(Photo by Matthew Nettheim/Apparition)
Spend a few minutes talking with Justin Taylor and you'll notice a few things. First off, he's pretty young to be the author of Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever, a book filled with stories so clean and focused that they could have been the product of decades of work. The second thing you'll noticed is that his age isn't really the point - Taylor is just a smart guy who sees the world in insightful terms, whether he's parsing Dennis Cooper's narrative techniques or reminiscing about punk houses in Florida. Between teaching the occasional class at Rutgers and working on an upcoming novel, Taylor is a regular contributor at HTMLGiant, a literary blog edited by Atlanta's Blake Butler.
Taylor read from Everything Here at A Cappella Books last night. We caught up with him to ask a few questions about the book and hear what's next for this promising voice.
The places in Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever line up with a few places youve lived over the years. Do you draw much from an autobiographical impulse?
Im certainly not above it, but its not the primary impulse. I do like writing from a sense of place, though, so a lot of the stories are autobiographical in that way I grew up in South Florida, I live in New York now, I went to school in Gainesville, I spent some time in Oregon. I like writing about places where I dont have to wonder how far apart the neighborhoods are or what the streets look like.
Earlier this month, we blogged about the growing frustration that many homeowners were feeling about an AJC-distributed advertising circular called Reach. Folks had been complaining for months about the litter caused by the Reach ending up in the street or sidewalk or stacking up in vacant lots.
Some folks in East Atlanta had even taken the time to launch StopAJCReach.org, a website dedicated to persuading the AJC to take greater care when delivering the ads.
One of the best ways to get a corporation to listen, of course, is to hit it where it hurts in the pocketbook. The website has been calling for advertisers to boycott the AJC and it's apparently scored a major coup. Chris Bolton, the owner of Houndstooth Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, has reportedly decided not to renew a $250,000 advertising contract with the newspaper. But, nearly as bad as losing the money, the AJC will be haunted with this testimonial that Bolton sent to the anti-Reach website:
"(The Reach is) simply an aesthetically disgusting product that was cluttering metro Atlantans driveways and lawns, and our name was associated with this soggy mess."
And here's the gist of Bolton's missive:
The only way I could get this through to the AJC exec was to look him in the eye and declare: READ MY LIPS! Were not any doing any more AJC Reach ads. Period.
I feel for the AJC. In today's dismal business environment, every media company is doing what it can to make ends meet. But as a homeowner, I agree that the Reach is obnoxious it's the print equivalent to an unwanted telemarketer call. There's got to be a better way to make money that doesn't alienate your own customers and clients.
The Series Cynic/D.O.W.
The 2010 Atlanta Braves are officially cursed and there's simply no explanation for it.
Wed like to spend an intimate hour or two with you, plus a few more friends, talking about our plans for the future. How does this Tuesday, May 4 from 6-7:30 p.m. at our HQ sound? Well supply the drinks and snacks and even give you concert tickets or passes to Atlanta area attractions!
Interested? E-mail us here: firstname.lastname@example.org
>> Get your Morgendorfer on! Interview Magazine reports that the beloved MTV cartoon "Daria" finally makes its way to DVD on May 11. All it took was an online petition of over 50,000 signatures. (Interview)
>> Elegance is learned, my friends. So sings "Real Housewives of New York" Countless LuAnn on her debut single "Money Can't Buy You Class." Unlike "Tardy for the Party," the country-turned-dance number from "Real Housewives of Atlanta" Kim Zolciak, which was so bad it was good, LuAnn's song is just straight-up BAD. Take a listen for yourself. (Gawker)
>> Reality TV may be more detrimental for Brits than Americans--thank God!--as Toby Young argues that British people are responding to politicians in the country's first televised political debates as they would "X Factor" contestants. Toby, is that so wrong? (The Spectator)
>> A "Curb Your Enthusiasm" porno. Pretty, pretty good. (Videogum)
>> Katie Holmes will play Jackie Kennedy in a History Channel eight-hour The Kennedys miniseries. Joining her will be Greg Kinnear as JFK and Tom Cruise as the assassin. Just kidding about that last part. (Hollywood Reporter)
>> Republicans have finally ended their financial-reform filibuster after three Democratic attempts and a final push for an all-night session. All this means is that the GOP will allow debate to begin. It all sounds so mature. (Time)
>> President Obama warned there is a stubborn "conservative" judicial activism in spite of lawmaker's decisions. This comes before he makes his second nominee to the Supreme Court. If the candidate is liberal and stubborn, is that better? (the Huffington Post)
>> Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik of Tucson, Ariz., refuses to comply with the state's immigration law, calling it "unnecessary" and "racist." However, the law allows that he can be sued for not complying. John McCain is watching. (Gawker)
>> AriZona Iced Tea wants everyone to know that they're based out of Long Island, not the state that just passed the immigration law, so don't boycott them pretty please! Also, no relation to the Tea Party. (the New York Times)
>> And finally: Five times as much oil as previously thought could be leaking from the BP oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Try to cover that up, BP. (BBC)
(Photo by Joeff Davis)
Unbeknownst to many of my congregants, I am a continual connoisseur of a sundry of tubular (that being Boob-Tube-related) offerings that expand even beyond (gasp!) "Lost." In the past year I've covered "Friday Night Lights," "Big Love," dabbled in "The United States of Tara", "Glee" and "Pushing Daisies," and ventured forth into wilds of "The Bachelor" and War on TV, and even gave some considerations to my beloved football in an NFL rundown. So as "Lost," my flagship post, comes to an end in a few weeks the question is begged: what next?
As most regular readers will know, I have quite a bit to say about, well, just about everything. And the bottom line is ... I watch a lot of TV. Especially on DVD (Anthony Lane of the New Yorker once said, "the most volatile compound known the man is that of decorum and despair," but I think it's the "play all" feature). Yet my pallor and loss of muscle mass is hopefully your gain - and as I continue to saturate my own brain with a never-ending kaleidoscope of pixels, I plan to continue writing, perhaps in broader strokes, what's on, what's worth watching, why it's worth watching, or why you should run for the nearest hills (I'm looking at you, first 15 minutes of "Happy Town.")
Today is the final day of the Georgia Legislative session. The above photo was taken after the end of last year's session.
In a deeply symbolic gesture, at the end of every session, Georgia lawmakers traditionally throw all their papers up in the air and go home, leaving a mess someone else will have to clean up.
@jf Ferdinand pockets 25k or so per year in bonus money directly attributable to his…
Wonderful memories in that old Hotel..GREAT steaks at Dale's Cellar and some great entertainment at…
The real problem here is that individuals, like Ms. Stanford, have been allowed to hijack…
@ Mark from Atlanta "Billionaire should also not be allowed to buy elected officials." Like…
And yet the good citizens of Georgia saw fit to elect a guy who for…
"Free speech is SO bothersome. let's ban some of it. We don't need any more…