2015 — 8 January: Thursday

While I have no time for, or faith in — and, therefore, no truck with — the increasingly popular fad of "detoxing" diets and inner celebrity-cleansing routines1 I have nonetheless concluded that there's no reason not to apply the concept to more elevated and less, erm, bodily concerns. Like what, David? Do tell. Why tell, when I can just as easily show?

I finally watched, and latterly skimmed, enough of this rather crudely-made film from the year 2000 by the late Kinji Fukasaku last night:

Battle Royale DVD

... to decide to expunge it from my collection without compunction, and certainly without straining my brain to concoct and assign a classification "genre" (my current focused enthusiasm) for it in my database. It was quite interesting to note, and ponder, some of the many parallels between this title2 and the more recent, big-budget, and far more lucrative "Hunger Games" variations on a somewhat similar theme. Or, for that matter, Norman Jewison's "Rollerball" 40 years ago.

I also note the Japanese film took a decade to get its MPAA certificate whereas "Hunger Games" has been slotted neatly into the 'Young Adult' category without a murmur. This is one strange world we live in, my masters.

An exercise in nostalgia

Or do I mean "eye-strain"?

As I was munching some breakfast before braving the rain to restock Mother Hubbard's cupboard ahead of my lunch date, I realised this concept of killing as entertainment, sponsored by the State, also formed the basis of a remarkably silly film called "The Tenth Victim" which was, in turn, loosely based on Robert Sheckley's original (and much better) SF short story "The Seventh Victim". It occurs to me that I had a lot by Sheckley on my shelves in earlier times. Proof? Well, how about page 87 of the last Books catalogue I bothered to typeset, print and bind:

My Robert Sheckley books, circa 19 February 1994

Try clicking it if your eyes are not what they once were.

While waiting...

... for my "green arrow" so I could turn left into Leigh Road on my way back from the great hunter-gatherer expotition I was ruminating — a little — on the "Dolly Llama" and his fondness3 for turtles. You realise, of course, that his belief about the load-bearing proclivities of turtles puts him in the same theological camp as Pratchett's Discworld? That's right: turtles, all the way down. Then, as I crossed the Monks Brook over the "weak bridge" nearer to Technology Towers, it occurred to me that my gentle local rivulet should currently be renamed Muddy Torrent. There's been a lot of raining going on somewhere upstream, it seems.

Somewhat later

I'm back home, clutching the errant little amplifier that Brian gave a clean bill of health to — both the amp and its power supply, in fact. Must be something odd about the electrons hereabouts. So that leaves me free to examine the four films Mr Postie handed over:

Incoming DVDs

Nothing too modern: they span quarter of a century from 1964. And I've seen none of them. Though I hafta say, the prospect of seeing Coral Browne portraying the elderly 'Alice' is a whimsical one. [Pause] How can I possibly be hungry again? <Sigh>



1  A concept I met 30 years ago in the dialogue in Martin Brest's "Beverly Hills Cop" regarding the idea of ancient hamburger meat festering in the sergeant's colon! The whole concept is now being less gently debunked. House: "That's why it's called the 'liver', Cuddy!"
2  It's a heavy-handed (and, I sincerely hope, satirical) attack on educational failure and one possible method of State-sanctioned action 'pour encourager les enfants/autres'.
3  As revealed by Frans de Waal in his recent book.