Woo mama it's been a long time now haven't it? I've been eextreemely busy at film & tv school. We've done music videos, a live internet broadcast, writing scripts and whole bunch of other stuff. Working pretty much non-stop and over the weekends. But I'm having a blast so it's all good!
Now yesterday I finally had some time over so I decided to finish a long overdue film list and here it is!
Contagion Let's start off with a movie that seems to be trying it's best to make you paaaraaanoid about germs and frankly just being around other filthy people. It stars Matt Damon with a whole bunch of other big stars. I think he plays some sort of journalist which is trying to do, uh, something, while a deadly plague spreads around the world. He's either trying to get the truth out or stopping the plague, I'm not sure. But the movie looks solid and serious enough. I'm a sucker for plague movies so this is high on the list.
In Time And here's the latest sci-fi movie by Gattaca writer/director Andrew Niccol. Besides Gattaca (which I love) he's the writer of the Truman Show and the guy behind Lord of War so he's steadily becoming one of my favourite filmmakers. In Time takes place in a future where humanity has reached immortality. Instead of money the currency of this world is more years on your life. If you run out years you die but if you're rich you can in theory live forever. It looks a bit more like an action unlike his other movies but that could just be the trailer.
Carre Blanc I'm not sure what this movie is about but it looks amazing! It's from France and it seems to be some sort of surreal dystopia with touches of absurdism. The music and the visual are gorgeous and it's getting great reviews. There's so many memorable shots in the trailer making me all giddy for this movie.
Skull World I've started to get more and more into documentaries recently and here's one that looks pretty entertaining. It seems to be equally about this really creative and interesting person aswell as this sort of hilarious event he's created called box wars. People dress up in homemade armour made out of carton and fight eachother with carton weapons until one of contestants suit is destroyed. The documentary seems to have some great humour and the main guy they follow seems hilariously eccentric.
Le Magasin Des Suicides Another french movie here only this one is animated so it might be dubbed to english (the trailer is in english). It's about this city where everyone is so depressed and suicidal that business is booming for the local suicide shop where you can buy weapons and whatnot to kill yourself with. Everything seems to be going well for the shop until an annoyingly happy and cute baby is born in the city.
Die Kommenden Tage (The Coming Days) Here's a really interesting german near future dystopia. Society seems to be disintegrating with violence spreading. As I don't know german I'm not sure what the actual status is with the world but everything looks suitably futuristic and bleak. It all reminds me of Children of Men which is always good.
Portable Life I'm not sure what the exact plot is of this movie but the practically dialogue-less trailer manages to catch your interest with great use of music and interesting visuals. It all just seems to have this great mood about it. Also it's always nice to see Rutger Hauer in stuff.
John Carter And now something a bit less deep but still great! It's the movie adaptation of the classic sci-fi/fantasy books series John Carter of Mars. It's Wall-E director Andrew Stantons first live action movie and while the Mars in the movie might not really look Mars-y enough it still looks solid and fun. There's some talented people behind this so let's hope they don't dissapoint.
Restless I've only seen a handfull of Gus Van Sants movies but they've all been interesting and worth watching. This latest one seems to be a kind of offbeat humorous romantic tragedy about death. It follows the growing relationship between a dying girl and a death-obsessed guy whose only friend is the ghost of a dead japanese kamikaze pilot. This movie will probably break your heart but it will hopefully break it gloriously.
The Ambassador Another documentary here and this one looks insane. It's from Denmark and follows the director who has managed to buy himself a diplomatic title in some African state and tries to see what he can get away with it. It looks hilarious but also kind of depressing showing how terrible deep the corruption runs in certain parts of Africa.
The Avengers But here's something entirely different! Grown men and women in colorful spandex beating the crap out of bad guys. It's what all the most recent Marvel superhero movies has been building up to these past years. The ultimate team-up of the Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America and a bunch of others. All directed with the steady hand by living god/Buffy creator Joss Whedon. If there's one person able to make this work it's him. I'm not much of a superhero fan but I really want to see this.
The Future And now finally here's another low-key comedy drama by quirky artist Miranda July. I absolutely loved her previous debut movie Me and You and Everyone We Know and this looks similar but still different enough to be interesting. It seems to be having quite a lot of fantastical and surreal stuff with it all being narrated by a cat for example. If it's just half as good as her previous movie this will be fantastic!
And that was the last photo post from my time in Berlin I'll do now. All of these last five photos were taken on the actual last day I spent in Berlin and just hours before we had to head to the airport and fly back home to Sweden.
All of these photos were taken way back on June 10th so it’s about time I got around to uploading them I guess.
After Berlin I spent some time in Stockholm after which I bought a European Interrail card and traveled around europe by train for a bit over 3 weeks. I got back from that last week or so and had an amazing time.
I’ll try to continue my photo tumblr with photos from that trip (and future ones) as I took loads. But in about a week I’ll move all the way up to Kalix (google it, it’s insanely north) and study film and tv production so we’ll have to see how much time I’ll have for that.
In conclusion I’ll add that my time in Berlin was fantastic and I got to know a crapload of amazing and extremely talented bunch of people. I started missing all you people and the entire city like crazy now while looking through the last photos here.
Getting closer and closer to the end of my Berlin photo blog now. Just one more batch after this one and then atleast the Berlin portion of my photo life should be done.
On wednesday I'm off on a trip around europe and I'll bring my camera so it's not the end of the actual blog though. I will not bring my computer so I probably won't get around to posting anything until I get back to sweden in august.
Been back in sweden a couple of weeks so I'll try to cram out all my last Berlin photos. "Thankfully" towards the end there I weren't taking too many photos so I should be able to finish my Berlin blog by next week.
After that I'm off to London and then hopefully off through europe with one of those nifty interrail cards. All of these plans pretty much just came about the last week. I'm going to London to meet my sister and some friends and then off to Venice to meet up two friends and then travel up by train back to sweden.
I'll bring my camera and probably upload all the photos on tumblr either during the trip or afterwards. I'm not sure what to rename the blog to though. Europe Schmeurope doesn't roll of the tongue like Berlin Schmerlin..
I felt I was a bit overdue with another list so here's a third list of cool xenobiology stuff!
For those who have missed my other lists and doesn't know what xenobiology is it's pretty much just really weird and/or realistic aliens. It's the art of speculating on how animals might evolve under different conditions from that of earth. Basically truly alien, aliens.
Discovery Channel - Cosmic Safari Let's start off with yet another made-for-tv "documentary" about possible aliens. I seriously thought I had covered every one of these kinds of programs. But then out of nowhere I find yet another one and this could very well be the earliest one. It's from 1999 and it's a whopping 1 hour 40 minutes long.
As I've seen numerous other shows like this there wasn't much new for me here.They cover all the regular stuff like exoplanets and the goldilocks zone. What I was hoping for was glimpses of weird aliens. Sadly there weren't a lot of those in this at all. I'm guessing the CGI was too expensive at the time as this "cosmic safari" didn't really have that many aliens. But if you haven't seen anything like this before and want a truly in-depth program about a wide variety of subjects regarding aliens this is quality stuff. (it probably helps if you find the seriously dated CGI charming too)
There's not much about this online but the entire program can be found by a quick torrent search.
Franxurio Let's continuue with an interesting artist. Franxurio (as he is called on deviantart) might not have a large selection of aliens up on his gallery but the creatures there are all fantastic and best of all truly alien. This creature here is just a drawing he did while practicing with a tablet. I really like the whole strange placement of the feathers.
René Laloux Now this guy is a legend. Hopefully most of you people have heard of him before and seen his animated films but if not you're in for a treat. Apart from some short films he managed to make three animated science-fiction films in the 70's and 80's. All of which happen to have a wide selection of really weird alien creatures. People might know him best for Fantastic Planet which I'm sure some of you will atleast recognize in some vague hazy childhood memory. The image below is from his third and last movie Gandahar.
All of his three movies happen to be uploaded on youtube of which you can find links to below.
Brynn Metheney Brynn Metheney is the creator and artist of a group of fictional animals living by the fictional Morea river. Apart from drawing other random amazing creatures in general too. I'm pretty sure she's going to be considered one of great artists of speculative biology in the future. The design and coloring and everything about her creatures is just amazing.
Sadly she just recently shelved the entire Morea River project as she's understandable getting a crapload of design work because of it. But there's still a lot of really great drawings to last us for some time. Hopefully she'll return to the project some time in the future or maybe even create something new and equally amazing.
Frank R. Paul I love it when I stumble upon stuff like this. Frank R. Paul is the name of a really prolific artist of pulp covers between the 1920's and 1940's. He drew an amazing amount of really fantastic sci-fi covers and interiors during his life. And one amazing thing in particular was a series of pages on the native life of all the planets in our solar system made for Fantastic Adventures in 1939. Ridiculous stuff now maybe but the imagination and weirdness of all these creatures is just amazing!
You can find bigger versions of all the pictures in this series in the links below as well as pictures of pretty much all the art he's done.
Tiffany Turrill Tiffany Turrill might not be exclusively drawing alien creatures but she has drawn quite a lot of them to be worth mentioning. Especially considering her creatures are gorgeous! The picture below here is of a Feathertongue Prowhead. I really like the strange contrast of this almost elephant or dinosaur creature but with the addition of some sort of feather-like underside. It looks both familiar and really alien.
Mike Corriero And here's yet another amazing creature designer. Seriously, there' s so many really great ones popping up now. It's like a renaissance of xenobiology art! But anyway, this guy is amazing. I just recently got his sketchbook in the mail now and it's just filled with gorgeous and interesting drawings. I don't know what more to write. The guy is just amazing and has done a crapload of drawings. Enjoy!
Terra And here's even more amazing pulpy magazine sci-fi art! I love this stuff. There's always so much really fun and gorgeous lost art to be found from these kinds of magazines. Terra was a science-fiction magazine that ran between the 1950's and 1970's in west-germany. In the first link below you can find tons and tons of scanned covers of the magazine. And it's all fantastic stuff! Most of it doesn't really have any alien creatures in them so I've included another link of a blogpost which has posted all the covers with "monsters" on them. Unfortunately I haven't managed to find out who the artists are for most of these.
David Melvin Now this artist is a creature machine! He just keeps on drawing amazing creatures of all kinds over and over again. While he's not really specialised in aliens he's managed to drawn quite a lot of them just through the sheer amount of random creatures he's created. I'm especially fond of the level of details on this creature here below.
Cory Trego-Erdner And another deviantart artist but this time also a short story writer. He's the creator of a world called Ring which is some sort of space habitat populated by aliens. With each drawing of an alien he also gets caught up in the backstory and ends up writing a short story about the alien. There's not that many aliens but the ones he's done are amazing! And it's interesting reading all the backstory of it all. Hopefully he'll keep producing more of these aliens. Like this alien right here that while it's bipedal it's not really humanoid at all. Great stuff!
Frank Little And now something completely different and really unique! Frank Little is a photographer/digital artist that makes truly incredible strangely realistic landscape pictures. It's hard to describe as I haven't really seen anything like it before. I'm guessing it's some kind of combination of real photos with really skilled computer rendering where he's creating these really alien landscapes. He also manages with the feat of doing something that looks really alien without resorting to using a really colorful and unnatural color scheme. It's earthlike blue skies and green nature and yet it all looks really strange and alien. Such cool stuff!
Skywhales And now finally here's a treat! Skywhales is an animated short film from the 80's by animators Derek Hayes and Phil Austin. The entire short film is uploaded on youtube and I urge you all to watch it. While the main aliens are not really that alien, being pretty much cartoony humanoids, it's the whole setting and animal life which makes it interesting from a xenobiology standpoint. That combined with the seriously messed up ending which in the end makes the film depict a truly alien world. This is seriously worth a watch and if you like it you can find the film included on the British Animation Classics Vol.1 DVD which I've also included a link for below.
Here's a couple of photos from a really cool club in Berlin which was set inside an old bathhouse. The dancefloor and DJ-set is down in an empty swimmingpool.
At one point during the night a big blow-up raft turned up and was thrown around the dancing crowd. All of a sudden the boat drops down and dissappears a moment and turns up again now with a really happy guy sitting in it. He "floats" around a bit on the crowd before falling abck down again.