It’s too hot for TV – plus The Thing is still COOL

Literally. The weather in England has become too hot for our telly and now the damn thing won’t work, which deprives me of Sky and all the new movies – mainly Public Enemies – which I haven’t seen yet, but kind of want to. This is because our Hitachi’s little silver box has a loose wire, making it a moody SOB that needs some TLC. Soon, hopefully, as a sporadic TV is just no good – how can I veg out and be distracted by 30 Rock repeats otherwise?

Anyway, the flat is also almost too stuffy to write or even read in, and all I’ve been able to eat for the whole of today is ice cream and fish and chips. I think my stomach wants to be on holiday by the sea even more than I do! Also,my  digestive system is at a crawl. zzzzz. Heat sucks. Need good old British raaaaain. But not a return to the snow of February this year. The snow that lasted longer than a week was a pain in the ass. Now I’d like just a little of it to take the heat out of the air. As this seems unlikely (until the inevitable thunderstorm/power cut followed by soggy spider invasion) I’ve made do with a very cool movie instead. And a bottle of Evian.

Last night I watched the Thing on glorious Blu Ray, via the PS3. which helped me to cope a little bit with the overheating. Yay, Kurt Russell’s beard/shades and silly hat. It’s a beautiful movie that John Carpenter swiped straight from the soul of H P Lovecraft – if you haven’t seen it yet, I can’t recommend it highly enough. The basic plot involves a small group of disparate scientists/stoners/50s throwbacks who are about to start their time of isolation in their frozen reasearch station, only for something otherworldly to come knocking and bodysnatching. The Arctic environment is as lethal as the shape-shifting monster that targets them, and the Blu Ray conversion’s main strengths are the extra detail in the Thing’s oozing, altering shapes, and the pinpricks of light now clearly visible in everybody’s increasingly paranoid, bloodshot eyes. Flames also look incredibly good. The Thing is timeless, and it helps that the monster transformation effects aren’t soulless early CGI but real physical effects that, by and large, still impress today because they’re so goddamn weird. The snow is also, like, totally pretty in the conversion, just what I needed. The temperature plummets still further, even in the stuffiest of rooms thanks to Ennio Morricone’s chilling score – even if at times it’s strongly reminiscent of Alien, which I believe is partly due to John Carpenter scoring the rest of the movie after Morricone did its distinctive ‘thud thud’ parts.

That cooled me down yesterday. Tonight, though, we mainly  watched Avatar: The Legend of Aang/The Last Airbender (depends on which Region DVD you watch) season one. Great show, too much fire for this weather, but I’ll go into more detail about it later as a) we finally have all three season in UK format in the house and b) M Night Shylaman has made a movie of it – except that it’s called ‘The Last Airbender‘ because James Cameron was afraid that a decent cartoon’s name would possibly effect his sales of his massive Dances with Smurfs flick, which has just crossed the $Billion marker for Blu Ray sales. Gee, thanks Mr Cameron, Sir.

Here’s hoping it cool enough tomorrow to review Dark Season, otherwise you might only be getting a review of the multiple cool showers required to keep temperature at bearable levels, instead of a lengthy rundown (with screengrabs!) on early 1990s childrens drama. Lucky you!


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