December 1st, 2008

breaking bad

Wallander

Wallander, first episode last night, is definitely worth watching. Kenneth Branagh must surely be the finest actor of his (ie my) generation. I feel that he goes deep inside himself to get the good stuff, and then emphasises how close he is to us, rather than projecting in a way that sets him apart like the great actors of the past. He makes Shakespeare accessible in the same way.

Wallander seems unsuitable to be a detective, as every murder or revelation wounds him to the core of his being. Poor bastard. I identified with him very much, as a difficult miserable old sod. Funny how as a woman you identify with the male characters in stories, while the female characters seem to be some other gender. Or perhaps this is just me.

Visually it was first class, with every shot perfectly composed and given enough space and time to matter. Shots were held and the pacing was gentle, in line with the Swedish coastal scenery which was filmed to remind us of Bergman and Tarkovsky's 'The Sacrifice'.

I think the script was sometimes a bit ripe, and the supporting characters, with the exception of David Warner, were perhaps not as strong as they might be.

Because each of the scenes was big - big in emotional space at least (not sure if they were actually long and slow, or if they were just filmed that way) - there wasn't room for many scenes. It was like a crossword with a small number of beautifully crafted pieces, instead of an intricate puzzle.
breaking bad

November reading (and listening)

Consider the lobster: David Foster Wallace
Hamlet: William Shakespeare
The Song of the Earth: Jonathan Bate
The Fire Gospel: Michel Faber
red dwarf/ infinity welcomes careful drivers: Grant Naylor
red dwarf/ better than life: Grant Naylor
Neuropath: Scott Bakker
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