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I watched a few episodes of Dark Angel for the first time since puberty.

In the pilot episode of the show, the titular hero teams up with a pirate television journalist in the cyberpunk dystopia of Seattle. They broadcast the dirt about a Rich Bad Guy™, and protect a witness from being silenced before she can give her testimony in court. The implication being that facts are meaningful, and that the criminal justice system is functioning.

From the vantage of 2022, the show’s dystopia is looking pretty optimistic.

Recent Chick Flicks

Kimi was described to me as Rear Window crossed with The Conversation. Both are great films. Kimi isn’t as great, but I still enjoyed it. It delivered on that description.

Watcher is another riff on the Rear Window thing. There were a couple times I found myself talking back to the screen because a character did something irrational, but overall I enjoyed it. The two main actors, playing the watcher and the watched, were great. The ending was great.

Emily the Criminal is a film full assholes. But likeable assholes.

A Good Woman Is Hard to Find starts out sort of meh, but then the main character makes an excellent life choice that really kicks off the plot. The score is by Makeup and Vanity Set, and you know how I feel about that.

Swallow shows us that all is not well in soulless bourgeois suburbia. This film was super weird and discomforting, but is exactly what I imagine the lifes of Goop customers to be like.

Catch the Fair One is a perfect film. 10/10. No notes.

I’m not much into boxing films, and this isn’t one, but there’s a sparring scene in the beginning in which I couldn’t identify much in the way of acting. I had to pause the film and lookup the actors who play the main character and her trainer. Either they should be winning Academy Awards or they are professional fighters. Turns out, they’re professional fighters.

Four of these films were scored by Nathan Halpern, who does excellent work.

Recent Tech-Noir

Two of my favorite artists on Bandcamp are Makeup and Vanity Set and Pilotpriest. Both were recently involved with tech-noir films.

Pilotpriest scored, directed, and wrote Come True under the alias Anthony Scott Burns. This is the first feature length film of his that I’ve seen. His previous short works include a Tron sequel and, with Ash Thorp, Lost Boy. Both are excellent. Come True follows a teenage runaway who joins a sleep study at a local university in order to have a place to sleep, and proceeds to awaken some sort of demonic universal id. It is full of neon and moody lighting and retro tech and hex dumps and I loved it. I think of it as a sort of Strange Days by way of Stranger Things. There’s not much dialogue, but I thought the lead actress did a great job of selling the character’s path from confusion to discomfort to terror.

Makeup and Vanity Set, using the nom de guerre Matthew Putsi, scored the third season of The Girlfriend Experience. The show follows a neuroscientist hooker who uses her sex work experience to help build a manipulative artificial intelligence. It is quite weird, but I enjoyed the aesthetics of the show. Reviewers seem to criticize it for feeling very cold and sterile and antiseptic, but I think that fits with the theme of sex-divorced-from-emotion. I enjoy my tech-noir, and this is that. It felt somewhat Gibsonian. I wouldn’t have been surprised to learn at the end of the show that Huburtus Bigend was orchestrating things. The score, as expected, is excellent.

The only previous film score work I’ve seen from MAVS (excluding the three seconds he had in Godzilla vs Kong) is Hit TV, which also satisfies.

Haight Street Preacher

Neither Jesus nor his lamps find welcome among the junkies on Haight.

ZeroZeroZero (or triple aught, as I call it) is something like a blend of The Godfather and Sicario.

The series follows a shipment of cocaine from Mexico, through Africa, to Italy. Like the other series I’ve recommended recently, it can be described as a stylish, slow burning neo-noir with just the right amount of gunplay.

I usually consider Mogwai to be a poor substitute for Godspeed, but their soundtrack isn’t bad.

Giri/Haji is a stylish, slow burning neor-noir crime drama set in Tokyo and London.

The story concerns a police detective, his yakuza brother, and their series of poor life choices. Everything about it is very well done. The show is described as “cancelled”, but the first season is a complete story and, as excellent as it is, I think continuing with the characters in a second season would only lessen the experience of the first.

Isolation Report, Day 2020.07.29

One hundred and thirty nine days of Operation Fuck Off I’m a Hermit Now. Bacon and chocolate supplies restocked.

All systems nominal.

Isolation Report, Day 2020.03.16

All systems nominal.