19 April 2010

Daybreakers by the Spierigs, 2009

Filed under: Movies — ktismatics @ 10:04 am



  1. Why did you single out the two frames above?


    Comment by the voice of parodic reason — 19 April 2010 @ 5:30 pm

  2. Visually they’re complementary, with the small circular glows (cigarette, holes in the car window) in both frames. Afterward I thought of them both as cigarette burns, which of course adds a cinematic self-referentiality and also an oblique allusion to Carpenter’s Cigarette Burns TV episode about La Fin Absolue du Monde.

    On a more mundane level, on the first image I like the idea of a vampire biologist being a chain smoker. Hey, he’s undead, what harm can cigarettes do him now? And in the second shot I like the idea of a car retrofitted for vampires to drive in the daytime, and the visual image of the vampire trying to drive the getaway car while evading these lethal sunrays, the death seeking him out inside his car — well, it just looks cool I think. We also see the blue tones of the vampire world persist throughout, which contrast with the harsh yellow glare of the hunted humans.

    I thought the movie had a good art-film look to it, even in the midst of the genre carnage. I also had a screengrab of the CEO of the blood company tied to a chair going down in the elevator to meet his doom, but I liked the diptych effect of these two shots by themselves.

    You’ve seen this movie, haven’t you, vopr? I thought it was quite good — how about you?


    Comment by john doyle — 19 April 2010 @ 5:57 pm

  3. Well, if I may still SPEAK HERE after Butchness left her odors in the room, I thought the movie quite good.

    (Butchness’s appearances in the pristine whiteness of Clysmatics always remind me of that scene in WITCHES OF EASTWICK when Jack Nicholson walks into a church, his mouth full of cherry seeds that the witches have put in his mouth by black magic, and then keeps throwing that up on all the Christians)

    It’s interesting what you say about the cigarette burn, in this context it could be an index of anti-capitalist rebellion (assuming that we identify the ban on smoking as one of neoliberalism’s hypocritical pro-health strategies which are in fact behavior control). Overall this idea of capitalism putting up a gleaming metallic affront, while underneath, the ship is sinking, is visually sound.

    I also thought that the idea of the ”sun cure” harkens back to ”Prestige”, in which Nikola Tesla’s materializing machine becomes a means of cost-free production.


    Comment by the voice of parodic reason — 19 April 2010 @ 7:24 pm

    • As I said in the other thread, your appearance was totally predictable. Of course John lied about you as well. I would have thought Nick capable of fighting his battles alone, which is the only way he could have beaten me, if that was his ‘warrior’s wish’. As it is, I’ve beaten you all very easily, and feel quite refreshed all of a sudden, especially by your stupid and obvious appearance, Fats.


      Comment by anonymous — 19 April 2010 @ 7:38 pm

  4. Look Butchness it’s one thing to hide behind Missus’s skirt, or even the skirt of Anodyne Elite, but to HIDE BEHIND YOUR OWN GODDAMN SKIRT as an ”Anonymous” really transgresses the boundaries of poor taste.

    Come to Nikki. Come to me now.


    Comment by the voice of parodic reason — 19 April 2010 @ 8:35 pm

  5. What a pig you are.


    Comment by anonymous — 19 April 2010 @ 8:38 pm

  6. I just watched The Box, Richard Kelly’s latest. While all the portals and extraterrestrial innuendoes and nosebleeds were fun, they seemed completely irrelevant to the core story. I suppose that one could decide that that’s the point, that the box isn’t really the main part of the story, that it’s really about space aliens invading the minds of NASA and NSA. But I don’t think so. I think Kelly was trying to jazz up a perfectly coherent and simple premise with a lot of atmosphere and mystery, but it’s all a bunch of red herrings. Je should have left well enough alone and told the story straight. Push the button or don’t: that’s it.


    Comment by john doyle — 19 April 2010 @ 9:14 pm

  7. Don’t jump to conclusions Clys, you have to let it sink in. I think the point is precisely in the seemingly incoherent connections: most notably the relationship between Norma and the Devil, who are connected via deformity. But before we get into that, strange that the movie didn’t seem to have moved you. It hit me like a hammer!


    Comment by chief parodist — 20 April 2010 @ 5:29 am

  8. I liked the portalic effects, but didn’t think they enhanced the story. And the movie did hold my attention. As I said, perhaps the story is the red herring and the effects are the main event. It’s not unlike Cigarette Burns: start with the basic premise of the box and the proposition, then see where it goes. After watching the movie I read summaries first of the old Twilight Zone episode on which it was based, then of the Richard Matheson story on which the episode was based. Peeling back the onion I find that I like Matheson’s version the best.

    The connection of deformities provided an uncanny effect to be sure, but what’s the point? Half-face got hit by lightning, and now he’s an employee of the ones who control the lightning? And Cameron Diaz is now in touch with whoever controls X-rays? But humans can already control X-rays: her deformity was the result of human error, not an act of God. And the nosebleeds were a result of an inability of the alien force to probe the frontal lobes without side effects? I’m not persuaded. I liked it better than Southland Tales, but that’s not saying much. Perhaps I’ll watch it again if our daughter decides she wants to see it.


    Comment by john doyle — 20 April 2010 @ 6:27 am

  9. I don’t know the deformity sounded like Antichrist, like Diaz and Half-face had an awareness of the corruption in the world. There’s something annoyingly high school about Kelly, like he tries to cover up his lethargy with convoluted plot points. But that whole ending was great an all.

    Something’s changed in the distribution of Butchness’s relapses, they come more frequently and they linger far longer; also, they seem to cluster around persecution icons like Nikki. Maybe it’s time for some Chlorazepam in addition to the Ritalin.


    Comment by chief parodist — 21 April 2010 @ 2:40 am

    • Anonymous has serious concerns about being harassed, which I honor.


      Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 4:57 am

      • That’s kind, John, the perfect thing to say because it takes it out of the realm of unreality, which was the primary problem with it. Not that actions I’ve taken haven’t been effective and new ones continues to be (very unthreatening by the way), but most refused to take this seriously at all. The reason I’m not ‘scarred’ by this matter (at least by now) is that somehow it’s worked so that it could become more peaceful. The ‘harasser’ is not bad, just a little hard to decipher, and he’s not bothering me now. I think he thought I would hurt him if I could for this, but I wouldn’t. I just couldn’t keep amusing people with it without going more and more crazy. That’s why I said some of the formalities about the confidential information were not quite as important as continuing to clear the air about this. For having to do that, I do apologize. But it seems to have arrived at a pleasant conclusion, ‘ktismatics version’. ‘NB’s’ little remarks yesterday were charming, whoever he is, or at any rate inoffensive, so I wasn’t angry any more already.

        You know, it’s not really possible you would have been able to allow us to really talk here so personally even a year ago, is it? When you told us the other day to ‘go at it’, more or less, I was very surprised. But I think you might have been surprised that I responded to ‘NB’s’ final remarks–which also surprised me–in such a happy way.


        Comment by anonymous — 21 April 2010 @ 11:27 am

      • ‘Something’s changed in the distribution of Butchness’s relapses, they come more frequently and they linger far longer;’

        Of course it is obvious how ridiculous this is. There aren’t any relapses Dejan would know about anyway, in fact he knows nothing about what has gone on since I left CPC. But my intensity in the posts from Monday was just being a kind of ‘amateur trial lawyer’ working with nearly impossible phantoms.

        But it is such remarks which have made me reconcile with certain persons, no matter how vicious, and others, like Dejan, who prove total desire to provoke with remarks like this. There has been no ‘relapse’, much less the plural and ‘longer and more frequent’ is pourri…he wants this to be the case, which I discussed at Anodyne’s thoroughly. Until he changes his basic hatred which is well expressed in his ‘professional clinical Lacanian diagnosis’, he will remain the single exception to my total scorn, even if I might only be physically attracted to Nick and traxus (there IS no ‘Nikki’, but Dejan used mercilessly these various switchings back and forth from Nick’s obvious posts and lafayetc’s, which were the same: For example, he often said ‘you stare like a HAG at your dick just like Nick Land told you so many times’, forgetting that it was the ‘lafayette’ entity who told me that, and that he swears ‘lafayette’ is not Nick Land.

        Not that I expect him to be able to follow that clear expose there.

        But while there are lots of popular bloggers that are never going to interest me much, even though they do others, including you (as Harman and Levi and some are interested in k-punk), there are still those whose talent once in a while will make me stop–as with Dominic’s current poem, which I couldn’t resist praising and passing around to numerous people. Of course, that was me as ‘Ted Burgess’ there, and that character (from L.P. Hartley’s ‘The Go-Between’, made into a wonderful movie with Margaret Leighton, Alan Bates and Julie Christie) was the character his poem suggested.


        Comment by anonymous — 21 April 2010 @ 11:38 am

  10. Eloise what exactly have we PROFITED over the years from the objectologists and the hauntologists? OK at least dr. Sinthome was decent enough to write a panegiric. But the others? PURE TRASH. The worst is probably Komrad Nymphomania, who seems to be traveling on diplomatic level while continuously COMPLAININ about her devastating position as a Marxian professor who doesn’t even have her own goddamn cantine.


    Comment by chief parodist — 21 April 2010 @ 2:44 am

  11. I rarely read the I Cite blog. The objectology I have found stimulating, as it gave me a point of access into a field where something new seemed to be happening and excitement was in the air. I believe the big convention bursts on the American scene in Atlanta on Friday, in preparation for which Dr. Sinthome has been in closed rehearsals for some time now. The other philosophy bloggers seem now to be gearing up for presentations and publications and getting in at the ground floor of a popular philosophical movement, apparently demonstrating that their blogging has been a way to fill time until they made it big. John McC the new Vole came over here recently but left vowing never to return, which is probably just as well. Mikhail shows up only when there’s trolling going on. Kvond cast me aside as a shallow sellout who’s not serious enough about the power of ideas — fine. Anodyne has some interesting posts, and I enjoy talking with her. Erdman is working through the great novels and has afforded some interesting discussion, but I’m not prepared to reread these book and Erdman seems bent on finding a Christian lesson in each work. I read Kim Dot Dammit quite often and drop an occasional comment there, but her blog isn’t really set up for conversation. I don’t know, maybe it’s time for another round of screengrabs. On the blogs these days I find myself mostly interested in the people I like, especially the commenters here at Ktismatics, and discussing things of mutual interest. But so many of them don’t seem to like each other very much.


    Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 5:16 am

  12. Don’t get me wrong: I’m legitimately interested in these varied topics — ontology, theology, psychology, science, movies, food, politics, etc. etc. — otherwise I wouldn’t want to write about them or discuss them. But I feel like lately I’m experiencing the blogosphere as “cold world,” to borrow Dominic’s line. So I’m reading this book about the history of flagellation, stimulated primarily because Harman translated it from German. But it’s an interesting topic in its own right, with psychological and theological and aesthetic value. But do I want to write descriptions of various aspects of the book as blog posts? Do I want to propose some sort of theory about flagellation and defend it against critique? Or do I just want to read it, get what I can from it, then move on — like I used to do before I started writing a blog? I have no academic aspirations, so blogging doesn’t constitute either a practice field for real academic writing or a place to let myself loose from the formal constraints of academe. I’ve not found the blog to be a very good place to explore fictional ideas or just to think out loud: I still write in notebooks for that sort of thing.

    But as for The Box, yes I thought the ending premise was a pretty good one: redeem yourself by making yourself a sacrificial victim for a loved one, but put the gun in the hands of another loved one who must then live with that guilt. This idea was a clever outgrowth of the original premise, and did not depend on all the spooky ontology and time-out-of-joint business that Kelly seems to want to claim as his trademark.

    Oh and also, Chief, your question as to how we haven’t “profited” from objectology should have launched me into an exegesis revealing your interests as being fatally infected by capitalist concerns. Maybe the multiplication of objects is kind of like the magic of capitalism, in which the multiplier effect results in the creation of new money out of nothing. That sort of theoretical riff feels like sophistry to me, but it’s kind of fun sometimes.


    Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 5:53 am

  13. Yeah Erdman is quite the Christian bottom type, fishing for enlightenment at every corner. No doubt also at his parish’s leatherette shop ’round the corner. How long has he been taking free Lacan courses here? Two years?

    I didn’t mean the I CITE blawg, which is just a Zizek fan site basically, but the ”Infinite Thought” blawg, where Comrad Nymphomania sounds like she’s having continuous orgasms; her whole shtick is to whine and complain against the system, while riding on its numerous benefits such as frequent trips round the Eastern world. Unless she’s being sponsored by someone, they certainly cost much more than any of her working class target audiences can afford.

    being fatally infected by capitalist concerns.

    NO! Even in a bartering economy, you get something in exchange for something. But the ”exchange” so far has been they get all the attention, readership and entertainment, and we get silent chuckles and arrogant sneers.


    Comment by chief parodist — 21 April 2010 @ 9:29 am

  14. I get the parodic names confused sometimes. I visit Infinite Thought once in awhile, but she’s not on my regular circuit. I did get some enjoyment discussing Lolita with Erdman though.

    Regarding exchange, would you say that you benefit intellectually and affectively from the work that other bloggers put into writing their posts? You’re suggesting instead that the famous bloggers benefit from what Beller calls the cinematic mode of production, such that we who click onto the sites are the ones doing the unpaid labor, giving them the sort of attention that translates into book contracts, speaking engagements, association with more reputable types, job offers, and so on. Do you think the objectology cabal talks about you behind your back, chief?


    Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 9:46 am

  15. Blogging seems like the sort of activity where everyone can profit from the exchanges. Restricting the supply and distribution of intellectual property is artificially imposed by intellectual copyright, hierarchical distinctions between students and professors in the universities and other intellectual institutions, and so on. But it’s clear that some of the bloggers already have established insider-outsider distinctions that bestow plenitude on them. And the objectologists have consciously and intentionally networked themselves together as an elite cadre distinct from others who aren’t in the club. The distinction is based in part on merit and shared perspective to be sure, but it also exemplifies, no doubt purposely so, the Latourian view of networks and actants and trials of strength and so on. This sort of approach assures some sort of profit-sharing for those who agree to join the club, but it seems to function at the expense of those on the outside who are either hoarding intellectual wealth of their own or trying to drain it via vampiric energy suckage. It seems, from the perspective of a part-time participant who generally supports realism, to enact an intellectual economy premised on the win-lose game of scarce resources rather than the win-win multiplier promised by free blogging exchanges.


    Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 10:01 am

  16. did you see that you appeared on Phoenix Pop Culture examiner>



    Comment by chief parodist — 21 April 2010 @ 2:34 pm

  17. No, I hadn’t seen it. The writer refers to Ktismatics as a “philosophy blog” — take that, you sneering academicians! I see he too is a fan of portals and doesn’t like too much ketchup on his steak, so that’s good. The portal as “time sphincter” is a somewhat disturbing image.


    Comment by john doyle — 21 April 2010 @ 3:27 pm

  18. ” This hollowed arena echoes with the omitted presence of the man of few words only to elicit conversation that would be better to leave what concerns the invisible unspoken in the manner of Wittgenstein.”

    Well this sounds like adumbration talent on a par with Comrade Dominique’s, I would say.

    Something entirely else – I am totally hypnotized by the beauty of the Ukrainian girls here, and was just thinking what a goddamn TRAVESTY it was to cast MURRRL Streep as a Slavic beauty in ”Sophie’s choice”; the only resemblance she could possibly bear to this is the high cheekbones.

    (also look at the comment boxes as a remark on your previous remark re blogging)


    Comment by chief parodist — 21 April 2010 @ 4:30 pm

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