Saturday's puppet show was awesome! It was 2 Spanish fellows, dressed entirely in black, manipulating puppets on a long table, with only a bunch of candles as illumination. The main puppets weren't marionettes, but some of the supporting one-off chracters were. Thankfully it wasn't in Spanish, or even in English-- it was all gibberish. Which you can pull off if it's Quixote. I sometimes wondered, though, what the experience was like for those who had no idea at all what Quixote was about. Anyway, it was obvious they knew their stuff, and had performed this many, many times. They were perfectly timed with the music playing over the speakers, and they knew their cues. Occasionally one of the guys would drop out of sight to prepare the next backdrop or characters, leaving only one person to control the puppets. But when both men operate one puppet, like in the beginning, the movement is incredible. Graceful, accurate, and just so alive and expressive that it made me feel like a kid again. I did love the fact, though, that I could be so entranced by the puppet, but just look up a few inches and there would be the puppeteers, faces acting out emotions as the gibberish spilled forth. Occasionally the puppets would actually acknowledge the puppeteers, maybe ask them to do this and that, or chastise them with a look for prying, and in this, again, the fact that it was Quixote didn't hurt. The music was good, the set construction ingenious, and the whole thing was just terrific. Even though I was dog-tired I was really glad I went. There was an interesting effect achieved at the end, when, one by one, the candles were snuffed out, making it the theatrical equivalent of a fade to black. Brilliant.
After the show, they left the puppets on the table and while some people were shy at first, I thought I might never see these kinds of puppets again and so bounded up the steps to look at them up close and actually try them out. They were papier-mache, and a little heavier than I expected, but as usual, the eyes were eerily realistic, and reflected light really well.
I finished The Passion and, yay, it was also very good. It had much more plot than I thought it would, but as ever, Winterson's strength is her language, and she convincingly posits love as both irresistible force and immovable object. I was surprised at how short it was. The fact that the two narrators sometimes had the exact same thoughts/observations/conclusions reminded me of Haruki Murakami's Hard-Boiled Wonderland & The End of the World. Speaking of Murakami, when the fuck is he coming out with a new novel in English? It's been years since Sputnik Sweetheart!
Have begun McSweeney's Mammoth Treasury of Thrilling Tales, edited by Michael Chabon.
On the heels of the 2046 trailer, it's the first footage from Mirrormask. Thankfully, the thing I was unsure of, the music, isn't from the film. No hint of a story, just some beautiful images.
The project Wong Kar-Wai is developing with Nicole Kidman is called The Lady From Shanghai. I'm not sure yet if it's a remake of the Orson Welles film or not.
New trailers: the new Birth trailer, Days of Being Wild is going to be released in the US, the new Incredibles, and the new Jean-Pierre Jeunet, A Very Long Engagement.
Sometimes while reading someone's blog entry, in the midst of it you're already reacting, and maybe forming what will become, supposedly, a comment. But then the post in question arrives effortlessly at the conclusion that you did, and serves as a gentle reminder of why this person is a friend, and someone whose blog you read. Such is the case with Colleen's recent post.
And if I may mention, Neva's recent posts have been reminding me why she's under Blog Inspirations on the left. She makes it look easy. It comes very naturally to her, even if she doesn't see it sometimes.
Today was very satisfying, in that I re-organized my bookshelves. At the end, I was just staring at it, and smiling slightly to myself. I like seeing what I've read, and am slightly daunted at what remains unread, but excited all the same.
I'm in such a reading mood! I keep telling myself to set aside time to catch up on all these DVDs I haven't seen, but I end up staying in my room trying to finish a few more pages of whatever it is I happen to be on.