Glenn is a jaded homosexual young man who wakes up after a kinky one night stand to find himself alone in bed and still tied to the bedposts.He moves to untie himself and examine the marks left on his wrists.
He meets up with his friend, Michael, who is a hopeless romantic and does not agree with Glenn’s opinions towards homosexual relationships. Glenn doesn’t believe that homosexual relationships can work due to the ‘discretion’ exercised by many homosexuals to avoid social stigma, resulting in relationships hidden from others that have ultimately nothing holding them together and adding more problems. He tells Michael that he’s a fool and that people die alone and thus spend their whole lives trying to make up for that moment.
Michael mentions that he’s started dating a nice guy and things look promising. Michael brings Glenn to introduce him to his new boyfriend, Alden. They smile, exchange greetings and shake hands. Both of their wrists have similar marks. Glenn smiles and congratulates Michael.
-Most of the feedback was centered around the fact that the beginning and end would lack much text/dialogue but the middle would probably require copious amounts of dialogue to contextualize the characters.
I’ll get the plot out of the way first. It branches off on its own tangents very often, but I feel that it compliments the film as the film is about playing in a field full of unknowns. The audience is likely to get lost, unless they can follow the parallel stories from multiple directions, that only really make sense near the end, and even then, you need to make assumptions before certain things actually link up.
Convoluted stories are always hit and miss with audiences, and whilst I personally liked it, I knew the minute the credits rolled that this movie is not for everyone. Personally, I like the different tangents and found the writing to be commendably tense, without needing to resort to excessive drama or action. In fact, the only time the protagonist, George Smiley played by Gary Oldman, raises his voice is far after the climax of the film, and I feel it adds to the character, that he keeps his calm no matter what happens during the tense moments of the film but breaks suddenly when reaching a resolution, possibly one he’s been trying to not accept.
One complaint with the plot would be the ending where Smiley reacts to a person in his apartment (hinted to be his wife/ex-wife) in a familiar manner after all that’s happened. It ruins it for me. The other issue I had was with the rather lacking confrontation with Karla. We find out he’s involved in the scandal, only to hear him talking easily and then walking out of the room where Smiley is focused more on his former friend.
Alright that’s plot out of that way, let’s talk about acting. For the most part, I think the acting was pretty good. It may seem rather lacking to some, but I think that in the context of the film, it was very appropriate. In fact, I am of the opinion that most audiences are too used to having information spoon-fed to them, but such is the influence of the straight corridor of traditional Hollywood narration.
However, whilst the acting was pretty good, if not spot on, for most of the film, David Dencik’s final scene as Toby Esterhase bothered me due to the fact that it was unnecessarily hammy. Now, I’m well aware it could have been a conscious direction or decision due to the contrast it would make next to Smiley in that scene. Even so, it did not gel well with the overall feel of the film and the way everyone acted in a restricted manner that can almost be seen as human. Especially with the chess theme that was presented from early scenes, the final scene with Esterhase did not feel like a magnificently executed move, but instead, it simply felt like a plain and uninteresting victory, with Smiley watch Esterhase’s pathetic breakdown.
(Update on 20th February 2012, 10.38pm. With reference to this interview, page 5, Gary Oldman admits that David Dencik seemed to have forgotten his line during that scene. I was right!)
Sound-wise, I feel that the sound in the film was very safe. With the tone of the movie, and the restrained nature of emotions, combined with the fact that the film easily loses the audience as the story progresses, the sound is admittedly something that I believe was difficult to really plan for. However, the result is a soundscape that is safe, and whilst generally appropriate, does nothing to really compliment the film.
Camera work was rather simplistic, and honestly I felt that camera and editing were the major flaws of the film. Together, there were a lot of moments where editing threw me off, rather than helped me understand anything. Whilst the movie could have been intentionally aimed at being confusing, relying on smoke and mirrors of confusing shots is rather sloppy. This is especially prevelant where it cuts from conversations to flashbacks of conversations and the 180 degree line gets crossed so often, and lighting between the two shots not distinct enough to signal a shift of location.
That said, there was one particular shot that really caught me, which was when Smiley was looking straight into the camera and recalling what he said to Karla, and for the moment, I felt some level of connection, so I commend it.
In summary, the writing and acting are good, and whilst there were certain things I could pick on, that others may not, I have to put my foot down that I hated the camera and editing work, and I feel that the sound designers probably had a hard time working on it when the shots were jumping all over the place.
This post was an attempt by me to ensure that the presentation of my blog communicated what I wanted it to, because the presentation communicates a first impression. This first impression is crucial, because it creates the context by which the audience interprets your content in.
A short post where I link an image to my blog, but I also bring in the experience I had, how I resolved it, and established a degree of knowledge of coding, by talking about how I fixed it by closing tags.
This blog post was probably where my posts stopped being so formal, and took on a more personal tone. It’s definitely away from the original image I had for my blog, but possibly closer to how people normally use their blogs.
I finally get started updating my blog Pages, which helps because if a user does not know a clear idea of what my blog is about, the About Me is usually the best way to get a feel of the writer. My About Me also establishes my authority in the subjects I discuss, and the Contact Me Page, allows me to be contactable for projects.
Whilst we have learnt about hyperlinking very early on, I am very pleased with this post. I take an in-class experience, relate it to out of class knowledge and hyperlink to use the database function of communication to bring about tangential learning to the audience.
Written on personal experience, in regards to a professional viewpoint, mixed with a personal viewpoint. I reinforce and justify my actions, and thus, my blog becomes a method of public relations to ensure my actions are not seen in the wrong light.
11th February – LOOK!!!
Definitely out of the usual style I write in, it takes on an extremely casual tone, designed to be humorous, then segues into a academic opinion meant to be thoughtful, more in line with my usual writing style.
I felt that majority of my posts have followed a writing style that is professional and succinct enough to get to the point before losing a reader’s interest, but still creative enough to have personality.
2) Basic HTML Design
I think my prior knowledge of C++ programming was a huge asset. It allowed me to use a premade theme, but make specific adjustments to cater to my preferences. I don’t think I’m capable of coding in CSS right off the bat, but I have enough knowledge of it to be able to read the code, and make adjustments where I need it to be, and in a professional setting, I can easily communicate as a graphic designer or team leader to my programmer, and that is definitely an asset if I were to enter the industry.
3) Designing for Purpose
My blog isn’t overly decorated, meaning the reader’s attention is directed to the text and buttons. Wording is clear and the buttons on the left side, meant to direct users to specific key areas of interest are good. Unfortunately, due to time constraints, I was not able to develop those pages, but the design structure is there.
4) Designing for Style
My blog might be simplistic in style, but I feel that the simplicity complements it. The appearance of a blog, communicates before the audience even reads a single line of text. Int hat communication, I have, in a aesthetically pleasing way, chosen a style that is both personal without being overly casual.
I could have done better here, it wasn’t as regular as I’d like.
6) Expansion in ways of presentation
I feel I have adequately experimented with different writing styles, using imagery and hyperlinking.
So, I’m sitting in my last tutorial/lab for Network Media getting ready to submit my Participation blog post and my Reflection blog post and I’m thinking about what I’ve done over the course of this semester. I hate doing things like this, because the minute I write that post, the authenticity of the blog is damaged. I’d rather not write it, but I don’t want to fail.
First things first, I’m one of THOSE PEOPLE. The kind of people who have 20 tabs open in Firefox, because they’re all so important that I can’t close them and instead relegate them to small App Tabs if I’m not utilizing the specific webpage at that moment. My Firefox crashed, but thankfully, it has a contingency plan to give me a list of my previous tabs, and restore my previous session. For some odd reason, and I blame my lack of sleep, I clicked on Start New Session rather than Restore, causing me to lose all those tabs.
What really struck me, was that now that they weren’t there, I could not recall what I had opened, save for a few key tabs I had been using just before the crash.
Sure, you COULD say that it’s a lesson about what I deemed important, but I see it as a lesson that technology has become so convenient in remembering things for us, and in turn, we probably aren’t remembering things as well as we used to. How many of us know 5 friends’ phone numbers by heart? I certainly don’t.
So I talked to a friend about my problems working with people; in particular, working with friends. It occurred to me, that as much as I’d like to help my friends and be accommodating to them, I realized that when I work, my priority is my work, irregardless of my familiarity to my peer. It concerned me that I could bring myself to be harsh to people who I was close to on a personal level. However, I came to the realization, with my friend’s help, that it was alright, and in fact a good thing, to detach my personal relations and professional relations.