Demonic Error v2.x - Quarterlife Crisis Arc: Hardcover Edition

= The Demonic Error =

BioMed grad from Monash Uni thrown into the wonderful world of Working Life. It's a cold place...and still no signboards in sight.

I write - Ghost Punque Border Prose
I draw - J-ko @ Deviantart
I dress up - DMJewelle @

<< February 2007 >>
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= Favourites =

- Hellsing, Escaflowne, Gankutsuou, Ouran, Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei
- OSTs, classical music, Jrock
- Seinfeld, Frasier, Invader Zim
- FF7, FFT, FFXII, Soul Reaver, VAGRANT STORY, Shadow Hearts series, Professor LAYTON

= Goals =

- Be awesomER
- A hospital-based job
- Qualify to file taxes
- A black longcoat, like what Jhonen Vasquez has

- Keeper of Nii-Hakase's brain
- Keeper of Hisoka's Summer Dresses That Saya and Yuma Bought For Him

= Routine checkups =

- Adventurers!
- Anti Hero for Hire
- Megatokyo
- Penny Arcade
- Sinfest
- VGCats
- Gaia Online
- Gamefaqs
- RPGamer
- Zero Punctuation
- Comic Fiesta Forum
- Wolfpack Forum

= Palsies! =

- Dyluth
- Eliar Swiftfire
- Keitsu
- Kemuri
- KiDChan
- labrynth
- Lin
- Mei Ling
- Marilyn
- Naoko Kensaku
- Pearlisha
- UltraM2000

= Event Photos =

= Comic Fiesta 2004 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2004 Day 2 =
= CosMas 2004 =
= Comic Fiesta 2005 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2005 Day 2 =
= GACC 2006 =
= Cosfest V - The Reunion (06) =
= Comic Fiesta 2006 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2006 Day 2 =
= Comic Fiesta 2007 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2007 Day 2 =
= GACC 2008 Day 1 =
= GACC 2008 Day 2 =
= AFA 2008 Day 1 =
= AFA 2008 Day 2 =
= Comic Fiesta 2008 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2008 Day 2 =
= Comic Fiesta 2009 Day 1 =
= Comic Fiesta 2009 Day 2 =

= Glossary =

Bishie - Short for bishounen, a guy so pretty other guys can't resist him either.
BL - Japanese term for Boy's Love. Considered Yaoi Lite.
DDR - Dance Dance Revolution, a game where you stomp on floor buttons and impress everyone else with your MAD DANCING SKILLZ
IRCFiesta - A group of people in the irc channel #comicfiesta who have been online so long we have no idea what clean jokes and sensitive issues mean anymore.
Seiyuu - The horribly talented Japanese who voice our favourite anime and game characters.
Yaoi - Mangafied gay pr0n. 9000x more appealing than actual anything.

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Monday, February 26, 2007
In which I get artsy!

Listening to: Love3Tune: Adrianna Krikl

A lot of people have this impression that I like art movies and that movies with crass slapstick humour and comedy disgust me. While the latter isn't too far off, I don't exactly extol the greatness of art movies either, so I wonder where people get that idea.

So I decided to live up to my reputation. Or something...I need to read more.

(click on youtube links for movies)

So this is an event in a pretty obscure place (took me ages to tell the security guard where I wanted to go), and it's a screening of amateur movies by local amateur filmmakers. I wasn't supposed to stay for all the movies since it was already 10 PM by the time it ended and the LRT closes at 11, but something made me stay back and watch and hang out for the Q&A sessions, so I figure it'll be nice to review all nine movies because I'm opinionated that way. Plus you get to see some of the stuff yourself without leaving home, lazy buggers. See what a nice person I am. XP

1. "Girl Disconnected" by Edmund Yeo/Eliar Swiftfire

Summary: A girl goes to the moon to find her internet love in 15 minutes with the help of Chinese moon legends and a cute nerd who tags along. Seriously, the nerd is cute. o_o

So you have a girl who wants to meet this guy she met on the net, except that he's in a foreign place and she doesn't exactly know where to start, so off she goes wandering in a surreal area of ballerinas and Moon Goddesses with flat acting and red balloons all over the place that I think signifies love.

Sure there's a storyline, and the music is sweet and touching and brings a certain melancholy - it's like the poor nerd just tags along and there she is all giddy and excited wondering what the meetup's going to be like (haven't we all had that feeling?) and you really feel for the nerd even though he barely talks and the camera's more focused on the girl.

That's when I started thinking who was I supposed to root for, because as much as the story's supposed to be about the girl, the nerd does so much for her that...I don't care about the girl. I don't care if she eventually did meet up with him or that she more or less confronted the Moon Goddess, because in the end the nerd sacrificed what's important to him for her, he gets insecure about the meetup and hides the directions she needs to find Jaric (the guy she likes), and he has to face the embarassing surreal moment of moon ballerinas in a field of red balloons. It makes him so human he doesn't even need monologues to get his feelings through. In that sense, the movie is a bit of a disappointment since it lives up to the movie title by disconnecting the girl from the audience.

2. "Taking Precautions" by Audrie Yeo

Summary: 1.5 minutes of a woman taking great pains to hide her identity during a private moment. Squeeble take note, an Ultraman mask was featured. =D

So this woman takes out a mask before going to a public toilet, apparently a social message about how technology always has a way of exploiting women's rights.

The thing is when the lady actually starts peeing, the screen blacks out, and the impact is wasted. If you want to make a message about how technology truly exploits women, why omit the part that actually proves it? If the guy's already angling his spy camera into the toilet cubicle, he sure isn't going to turn it off and wait until she's done. Maybe you don't want the woman's identity to be revealed, so take camera angles that hides the woman from us completely and credit the actress with a pseudonym. It might be respectful to do otherwise, but the point is pretty much lost.

3. ["Hello Goodbye" by Chitoo]

Summary: Back and forth on the LRT from Kelana Jaya to Putra Terminal in one clean shot, set to music.

Someone should tell this guy the LRT has warnings not to put stuff at the front of the trains, really.

It's really meaningless - you sit in the LRT and go from one end to the other, take the video and fast forward it, then take a second copy, set it to rewind, and put both videos running concurrently, that's what this is.

I like it.

I liked how the tracks just go on and on to Gombak that most of us never bother to see (because we all jump out at KLCC as if the train's gonna explode at the next stop), I liked recognizing the landmarks we see in the distance along the tracks, and I liked the perspective I never quite saw when I sit in the LRT. Maybe because the actual train is so friggin slow that seeing it move at 3x speed is SO COOL, but I just do.

4. "Lost and Found" by Roy Vimalan

Summary: Along with a step-by-step guide on how to steal shoes, it comes with a short discourse on whether possession really is nine-tenths of the law and why don't Malaysians use it to fuller effect.

So a foreign student comes to Malaysia, gets his shoes stolen, and gets pissed off like as if it never happens in China...or any Third World country for that matter. Bunch of people are interviewed on the relation of possessions to human rights (which seldom works because firstly you need to consider each item lost equally important and worth kicking a fuss about), then a Sunway College hostel guard explains the procedure in recovering lost items, and it is the single most hilarious bit. I paraphrase:

1. Lodge report
2. Check whether item stolen was a break-in or an inside job (so if the lock's not broken must be an inside job! Kill your housemates!!)
3. Investigate people who have been entering your room in the past 24 hours
(because EVERYONE is a suspect...even the guards themselves!)
4. ????

Or something to that effect. Apart from that it feels like something every arts student must make in this country to increase credibility. When in doubt, debate thy human rights, that be the motto.

5. ["The blind girl and the thief"] by Johan Arif Mazlan

Summary: There's a blind girl, there's a thief, and there's a twist! Not.

The funky, in the sense that the backgrounds look traced over actual stuff to give it a more kiddy-drawing style, but there's a lack of depth, and when the thief makes a cup of milk for the blind girl, the spoon doesn't even touch the cup, which just makes it look like play-acting. Still, it's something different.

Now if only the STORY was something different. Blind girl has family angst, a thief breaks in, OMG that's who the thief is, look at the regret on his face! Look at her wide-eyed blind innocence and how it touches him so! Look at him turn away from his life of crime and drugs, look at the especially contrived act of him stepping on the syringe, symbolic of his new path ahead!

Oh gawd the tripe, it KILLS. It feels like every other smarmy cliched Malay drama they air on TV with the forced melodrama and I hate having to be told what to feel. Probably the only movie that I actually didn't like, bleurgh. =__=

6. "Aunty Wahid" by Umi Salwana Omar

Summary: 30-minute interview and a peek into the life of an unconventional  transvestite.

This one is pretty much the star of the screening - the disappointment of the crowd when the organiser said the director wasn't attending was really loud.

The movie pwns - Aunty Wahid is the star, with enough screen presence for everyone to be fascinated at her. She (that's what s/he wants to be referred as) speaks about her sexual experiences in a straightforward manner sans dramatics, which have me imagining KiDChan screaming "BL OMG SHOTA" (actually I imagined her screaming the whole time). It covers a lot in 30 minutes - a supportive family (shokku!), her pals (gay stereotypes bitching about gay stereotypes! Irony for the lol!), her career as a fashion lecturer in Cenfad, a strange unwavering faith in God, and just showing her as a person who's been there, done that, and still standing strong.

I suppose the movie can also bring the message that it takes strength to stand up for what you are and be the better for it, but if you don't see that, watching a 50+ year-old transvestite teasing the camera and being so open with her sexuality is equally fun as well.

7. "This Sweet Refrain" by Fairuz Sulaiman

(it's the only video I'm bothered to embed because it's SO STUPID GOOD)

Summary: A karaoke music video! In deliberately crap pirated VCD quality too!=D

Hey, remember how every time you want to sing your fave song in Yumekukan/Redbox you'd have to put up with some smarmy video of a girl walking through some foliage interspersed with some bits of her frolicking with a boy and a garden hose (not THAT way you dirty-minded people) even though the song is Dir en grey's The Final?

Now take that image and bastardize it to hell. >)

Face it, a chubby guy in a LOUD shirt walking through KLCC park reminiscing the good times he had with his fish-head girlfriend before she became fish head curry with MS Powerpoint-type cheapo scene transitions in a good satire is MUCH better than the usual stuff, no?

No? Screw you. >(

The song? I didn't hear the song at all - was too busy laughing at the video.

8. "Red Drawing" by Margaret Bong

Summary: There's Chinese Opera...and a boy...something something something.

The biggest attraction was the little adorable cheeky boy who, like all of us and our first experience with Chinese Opera, can only recall the opening of the red curtain before it all blurs out and it gets boring and we all just want to go home and sleep. x__x

At least that's what I think the story is - the scenes are all over the place. First there's a teacher marking books. Then she goes to school and distracts the students by making them draw while she finishes marking books. Then the boy plays a prank and pays for it. Then he makes wire butterflies. Then the teacher walks by and then the movie ends and I go WHAT? Apart from a scene where teacher says flowers are red means flowers are red (a jab at our education system!), I don't see the relation between each scene, and the director had to explain the point herself for everyone to understand, not good. =(

9. ["Kg Chubadak"] by Mokhtaruddin Lasso

Summary: Somewhere in Sentul, a bunch of houses get demolished.

Now while all the demolishing and house-toppling is going on, the PM's New Year speech plays in the background. So there the PM is talking about all the development and the progress the country has made and there's the video of all the poor people getting shafted in the name of it. There's irony and feeling sad for the settlers, but there's also the feeling of activism because obviously the normal papers didn't carry it (malaysiakini covered it though), so it gives even more of the "government is perpetually bad and oppressive" aura that....malaysiakini tends to give off anyway.

The problem with the video is that in 3 minutes, all you really see is a bulldozer and a crane demolishing houses. There's no background info of the village, or why is it being done, who are these settlers, are they settlers or squatters, nothing, nada, zip, zero. I had to google it and watch the [video coverage malaysiakini had] to fully grasp the situation. Now think about how youth today can't be arsed to read the newspaper - what makes you think they'll look further into the movie and think beyond "government baaaad"?

After that there was a Q&A session with the directors, KM asked Chi Too for his opinion on the LRT movie and the guy just went O____O all the while, and I suddenly thought, "Hey, I want to hear Swifty blather," so I asked a question....and unsurprisingly, [Eliar taped his answer (you get a brief shot of me desu!)]. Seeing him aim the camcorder at himself briefly after the question was hilarious. That, and he spoke more than all the other directors combined, so everyone was just giggling. XD

Then it was already 10.30 and I didn't want to walk back to PJ, so off I ran to the LRT, the end. was it?'s indie filmmaking, Oscars this ain't.

It was pretty good, and for a brief moment I entered an artsy socially-aware world that I'd never been to, and with good reason - it's freaky.

Since KM and I reached early, we met the...organiser?....of the event when she was testing equipment. and we had a brief chat. It went something like this:

Her: Do you make films too?
Me: No, I write.
Her: Where do you write for? [some magazine name]?
Me: ...not really...
Her: Oh, you freelance?
Me: ...Not quite.... .__.;;

This isn't the usual "Oh, you write? What do you write?" for the sake of making conversation, this is a world where the assumption is you've done something good with what you enjoy most and that you're automatically good at it, and that's what scares me.

But otherwise, it was interesting all around. Next artsy event I attend, I'm SO wearing a beret.

Posted at 07:33 pm


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