ABOUT GUELYLAND

"One of the smallest , independent kingdoms in the ciberuniverse. Nothing fancy. Population? Just me, myself and my jaguars, my movies and my books (and, at this very moment, YOU). Hided and secret like Skull Island or Opar, the ancients in Guelyland use to read the scrools of a minor god called Voor-Hes.
Most of the treasures of Guelyland are made of paper, plastic and vinyl.Guelyland dreams with expanding in deep more then in surface. The music of Nik Kershaw has been heard here. There are apes, lots of apes in Guelyland. Woody Allen and Bob Hope visit it quite often. Here we love books (the Kingdoms Library is both celebrated and secret) Here we are atheists but very tolerant and think of god a bit too often and much. Guelyland is, the stuff my dreams are made of..."

MAY I INTEREST YOU IN SOME...

PEOPLE WITH TASTE. YOU CAN BE ONE OF THEM!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

R.I.P. TONY CURTIS

T.C. (1925-2010)

Well, he died yesterday, at 85, had a long good life and a lot of great films that will last as long as people likes movies. I feel like somebody i knew personally has passed away because i "knew him" since i was a very little kid. His life and movie carrier had ups and downs but the balance was positive. Enjoyed more then the company of the most beautiful women, a good painter, he was an insightful fellow and was famous all over the world for more then sixty years. That is more then the mayority of human beings will ever achieve.
In 1994 I bought his first auto biography and browsing it tonight I see these parts underlined. They move me now as they did then.







His latest "American Prince, a memoir" (Harmony Books, 2008) was on it's way when he is dead. I bet it will be a heck of a reading as well!
Hope some time soon we will be able to see some of his movies never properly released on DVD especially The Great Impostor (Robert Mulligan,1961).




Sunday, September 26, 2010

BRUBAKER

Prison movies can be a good chance to show us a methaphor of society,to show us how effective or futil is to try to change it and make something better of it. Of corruption and compassion or of how bad things are too often linked to similar and that that chain can go all the way up.
Brubaker (Stuart Rosemberg, 1980) is a hell of a good example of this. And just have a look to the ensemble cast of character actors we got here, leaded by Robert "Not just a pretty face" Redford. Lets see, Yaphet "Mr. Big" Kotto, we have Murray "Plastics" Hamilton, and Joe "Maniac" Spinnel, Matt Clarke and J. Emmet "Everywhere" Walsh. Heck we even get to see a young Morgan Freeman in it (and now don't tell me you have seen that one before).
This movie builds up with a nice false premise that brings us to an early great twist at the first half an hour and then just keeps up.

Redford plays a "One weird fucking individual" almost too good to be true but still possible mostly because we trust in Redford's integrity as a player , more then in any good looking blond WASP from Tinseltown.
As the sleazy southern character played by M. Emmet Walsh:"I am talking about tradition: don't fuck with tradition". I think this is a very important line since I personally consider Tradition (the grand mother of nationalism and religion) one of the most sugarcoated harmfull concepts in human history. If you have to sit two hours to just hear it on the context of the whole film you just made a good investment of your time.

"I am talking about tradition: don't fuck with tradition"

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

BARFLY


I guess there are differents approaches to the work or the "church" of Charles Bukowski (1920-1994). Some people love him sincerely, some people hate him cos is rough and some people just don't like he has become popular making their cult too mainstream. Me? I have yet to met the gentleman in the paper. Haven't read him but I just might do it.
Anyway, this is about the movie, "Barfly" (Barbet Schroeder, 1987) with Mickey Rourke and Faye Dunaway. My brother has been sending me Bukowski poems for years now but i guess i didn't read them without something else in mind or i just left them for later and later is still to come.
Nerdie as this may sound I know more about literature then about drinking, so right now when it comes to poets that write about booze I can recall the chinese poet Li Po (701-762) about who, as legend has it, drowned drunk trying to embrace the reflection of the moon. And my dear Omar Khayyam (1048-1131) the persian sufi writer, but it could be that he was talking about some mystic wine instead of the real thing.
I'm mentioning this because the script of this movie is quite poetic. Now, if you gonna judge a book by it's cover or, as in this case, a movie by it's plot and you happen to be on the wrong side of the political correctness as well, you are gonna miss a wonderful film, since this one is just so sharpy and sometimes vulgarly quotable that either will make you think or laugh (with an open mind,both). Because this film is basically some semi autobiographic important short period during the younger years of our wino american poet. And if you get close this one smells like those last night unfinished cans of beer with dead fags floating inside. But heck this movie is good!

Dunaway, Buk and alter ego Rourke

A movie about alcoholics that is not a drama. A movie that starts and ends with a bum being bloddy beaten and he is our poetic heroe as well. And what about a heroine that says "Listen, I drink. And when I drink, i move in the wrong direction..." after going to be with the "bad" guy for some bourbon.
Both hate people and he make it clear mumbling "I don't , but i seem to feel better when they are not around".
The dirty Mickey Rourke and a washed up but still beautiful Faye Dunaway play the couple in question . For the trivia crowd, the forementioned "bad guy" is none other then the most famous human Sylvester little bro: Frank Stallone. A big deal of the rest of the cast is filled by real alcoholics from the neighbourhood in l.A. And all was filmed totally in stinking locations. The result is simply one of a kind.
Bukowski wanted Sean Pean for the part to star the picture but Pean wanted Dennis Hopper for director. But Bukowski didn't like Hopper considering him a Hollywood phony (or so goes the story) and wanted Schroeder.
Watch out for a brief Bukowski cameo (in a bar, drinking)
Oh, yeah! Sean Pean could have been a contender here. Sure. I could even imagine Brando or DeNiro (better not think about how the newyorker would prepare for the roll) but the indisputable truth is that Mickey Rourke doesn't show less talent at all and here simply is the living definition of underrated actor. Salud! To all my frieeends!






Friday, September 10, 2010

LIBROS DE BORGES (MY BORGES BOOKS)

Aquí mi colección de libros de Borges desde 1,983 hasta hoy, septiembre del 2,010. Veintiocho años "in the making" y todavía creciendo. Imposible calcular la felicidad prodigada por sus lecturas. Desde la primera página cuando no tenía más de diecisiete años hasta el día de hoy y siempre. Lean Borges.


Behold! Guelylanders here's my collection of Borges books since 1,983 until september 2,010. Twenty eight years in the making and still going strong. Impossible to measure the happiness prodigated by their readings. From the first page when i wasn't more then an seventeen years old lad until the present day and forever. Read Borges!


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

NICK'S FILM - LIGHTNING OVER WATER


I was looking after this sensation for a while. Let's say, less then a couple of weeks? The sensation of being moved by a masterpiece of cinema. And, as not so rarely happen, it came by the form of a german movie (or a german director: Win Wenders. Hence, no surprise.
"Nick's Film -Lightining over water" is a rare avis, a movie about the making of a movie. Two different beasts, one animal. It's about Nicholas Ray and Win Wenders, two directors that act and direct themselves at the same time (Nicholas Ray, the director of such films as Rebel Without a Cause, Johnny Guitar and In a Lonely Place. Win Wenders has under his credits Wings of Desire and Paris Texas) .
Nicholas, Nick, is dying and his friend, his asociated in this enterprise, Win, is taking us to witness it. Sounds morbid but is not. It's real but is not. For me is about the essence of existence, about what we are and how we wanna be remember inside the boundaries of our human condition.
In the beginning, in real life, they wanted to work together again (they did it before in "The American Friend"(Win Wenders, 1977). Win was in New York making a movie (Hammett, 1982 ) and Nick, who lived in New York was dying from cancer. So, there was no time to lose. He had only a few weeks to live. The only possible thing to do was to make a film about what was happening: an old director that was dying of cancer and a a friend filmmaker that is with him during these last weeks sharing the remains of life with him. It's seems to be like a documentary. But in a very intelligent and subtle way they show us that is not. It's just a movie with a very, VERY, big resemblance to reality. So much that you can think is real without been too wrong.
Today, 2010, It could be seen as some sort of philosophical reality show. Long before reality shows were invented and obviously without the coat of vulgarity and stupidity so intrinsic to this kind of act.

"I knew that he wanted to work, to die working"

Lightning Over Water is about dealing with the Death not without fear but with dignity. And Death has such an invisible but patent presence in this movie that you can feel "her" out of camera waiting for her cue just to jump in. But so has dignity. At the end you don't feel sad because you see that both end up in good terms as in "the begining of a beautiful friendship". But you will be moved in a mystical materialistic way. And you don't see this too often in movies. If you don't experience this film the chances are that you won't see it. Ever.


Monday, September 6, 2010

GUELYLAND SONG #9: FIESTA, DE SERRAT


Nadie me ha hecho pensar, al escuchar canciones en español, como Joan Manuel Serrat i Teresa (Barcelona, 1943). Y, para ser sincero, no puedo recordar muchos cantantes que me gusten tanto desde que tenía seis o siete años. Para mi, que nunca supe conocer o apreciar a otros artistas como Silvio Rodriguez, Milanes, Jara, Mercedes Sosa o Sabina, el Nano se saltó de ida y vuelta con frecuencia la vaya entre cantante y poeta para darme lecciones en las que impartía bajo inolvidables acordes musicales con humor, tristeza o ironía en diferentes géneros, su libre y comprometida filosofía.
A pesar de ser un admirador crónico de su obra, he tenido cada cierto tiempo, intensivos periódicos periodos serratianos (el '81, el '84, el '87. el 91, el '95, el 2001, el '7, el '9) durante los que he redescubierto, en diferentes etapas de mi vida, la verdad y vigencia de sus canciones. Hay siempre por lo menos una que se aplicará a determinado instante de nuestra existencia y en la que nos veremos reflejados y con ella identificados. Son, claro, cuatro decadas y media y este obrero de la vida a pasado por todo.

Podría enumerar una larguísima lista con las canciones que casi desde siempre o recientemente descubiertas me gustaron y gustarán. Escoger una, y sólo una, para colgar aquí, me ha tomado un buen rato. Una que le cante al amor y su persistencia? A los hijos o la infancia? A los amigos? Al mar o la Tierra? A un viejo cinematografo? A la muerte? Al misterio de la mujer? A los vicios? A las chicas que fueron? A las mezquindades de la gente? A los olvidados?
Okay, escojo una por ser quizá la primera o segunda que escuché. La que hizo volar mi imaginación por una tierra y situación a la que sólo podía ver con la fantasía de mis ideas de niño curioso. Que luego, ya creciendo, pude imaginar de manera distinta para, finalmente, ver a toda luz su sentido. La canción es "Fiesta" y les pongo dos versiones. Una temprana, con un Serrat muchachón e improvisado frente a un público sencillo y juvenil de quizá principio de los setentas. Sin elegancias y en blanco y negro como era el mundo de la tele para la mayoría en aquel entonces. La segunda, en color, elegante y burguesa, con arreglos más sofisticados y un Serrat ya señorón y recorrido que domina la escena con la experiencia que dan las canas y la calvicie. Casi unos "Cuarenta años despues..." como en las historias. Un Serrat diferente pero igual.





Fiesta

Gloria a Dios en las alturas,
recogieron las basuras de mi calle,
ayer a oscuras y hoy sembrada de bombillas.

Y colgaron de un cordel
de esquina a esquina un cartel
y banderas de papel
verdes rojas y amarillas.

Y al darles el sol la espalda
revolotean las faldas
bajo un manto de guirnaldas
para que el cielo no vea.

En la noche de San Juan,
cómo comparten su pan,
su mujer y su gaván
gentes de cien mil raleas.

Apurad, que allí os espero
si queréis venir,
pues cae la noche y ya se van
nuestras miserias a dormir.

Vamos subiendo la cuesta
que arriba mi calle se vistió de fiesta.

Hoy el noble y el villano
el prohombre y el gusano
bailan y se dan la mano
sin importarles la facha.

Juntos los encuentra el sol
a la sombra de un farol,
empapados en alcohol,
madreando una muchacha.

Y con la resaca a cuestas
vuelve el pobre a su pobreza
vuelve el rico a su riqueza
y el señor cura a sus misas.

Se despertó el bien y el mal
la zorra pobre vuelve al portal
la zorra rica vuelve al rosal
y el avaro a las divisas.

Se acabó, el sol nos dice
que llegó el final,
por una noche se olvidó
que cada uno es cada cual.

Vamos bajando la cuesta
que arriba, en mi calle,
se acabó la fiesta.





Sunday, September 5, 2010

BARBARELLA

Jane Fonda is Barbarella. And Barbarella is a guilty pleasure.
A camp, euro chic, swinger sixties one. The proof that a movie doesn't need to be too good to be liked.
A movie with characters named Duran Duran or Dildano, Professor Ping or Stomoxis.
It's a crazy psicodelic trip directed in 1968 by Roger Vadim (born Roger Vladimir Igorevich Plemyannikov) the über lucky man that married Brigitte Bardot, Jane Fonda and made a kid to Catherine Deneuve.

The three times lucky Roger Vadim

Our heroine keeps falling to the floor and getting her beautiful clothes destroyed by lovely flesh eater parakeets ("This is a much too poetic way to die", she says on the matter) or iron tothed little dolls (Clack! Clack!). Making love to angels, silly literally underground rebels, bitchy queens wearing plastic horns, one "excess machine" that will kill you of pleasure, hairy child slave hunters (actually the children, are all cruel twins that torture Barbarella for fun so i guess they have it coming). Actually she makes love to everyone that saves her life.


Is not a serious movie unless you can take seriously a password like : "Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobbwllllantysiliogogogoch".
Barbarella is not just a pretty face, even if the Great Tyrant (that's the queen with the plastic horn) keeps calling her "Pretty-Pretty", because she could the password after hearing it only once!. She is very realistic, like when the queen says to her:


-"Vade retro, Earth girl! I know you don't really exist"
She answers, "That maybe true, Your Majesty, but let's just stick to what we see".




In this french-italian Dino De Laurentis production we get a great international cast. Americans John Philip Law (the tanned blond blind angel Pygar) and Fonda, italians Ugo Tognazzi (the hairy hunter Mark Hand) and Anita Pallenberg ( famous, amoung other things for her romances with Brian Jones, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger), french mime master Marcel Marceau (as professor Ping), british David Hemmings (as the clumpsy rebel Dildano) and Milo O'Shea (Durand-Durand) among others.


A guilty pleasure because it can gets you disturbed while making you smile, Barbarella is a cult movie that displays the beauty of Jane Fonda spiced with a series of fantastic outfits made by a costume design team headed by no less then Paco Rabanne. Through the years and long before I saw the movie for the first time, in the mid nineties, I was fascinated for the pics of Fonda from this film. And today I gonna share with you, Guelylanders, the whole dossier!












Let's add that Fonda made this movie instead of making Rosemary's Baby and Bonnie & Clyde. She regrets it. But I think that is lucky for us, Mia Farrow and Faye Dunaway.
I happen to dig the catchy swinging songs performed by The Glitterhouse as well (at the end of this entry)





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