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Don Quixote: A Review

3 Apr

-For the Uncensored!

Orson Welles 1992 film version that never made it to a theatrical release.

Don Quixote, by Miguel Cervantes, “but with Part 2 appeared ten years later mysteriously by an author named Avellaneda” proves that the story of Don Quixote is as much part of the oral tradition as well as literary. Edith Grossman, the translator for much of Latin America’s superstar writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez notes, in the 2003 edition, “I believe that my primary obligations as a literary translator is to recreate for the reader in English the experience of the reader in Spanish. When Cervantes wrote Don Quixote, it was not yet a seminal masterpiece of European literature, the book that crystallized forever the making of literature out of life and literature, that explored in typically ironic fashion, and for the first time, the blurred and shifting frontiers between fact and fiction, imagination and history, perception and physical reality, or that set the stage for all Hispanic studies and all serious discussion of the history and nature of the novel.” 

I think everyone who reads the prologue, the first sentence reads, “Idle reader: Without my swearing to it, you can believe that I would like this book, the child of my understanding, to be the most beautiful, the most brilliant, and the most discreet that anyone could imagine. But I have not been able to contravene the natural order; in it, like begets like. And so what could my barren and poorly cultivated wits beget but the history of a child who is dry, withered, capricious, and filled with inconstant thoughts never imagined by anyone else, which is just what one would expect of a person begotten in a prison, where every discomfort has its place and every mournful sound make its home?!” 

            This opening paragraph is the most teasing way a writer can tease to his reader, “I’m probably one of the best writers in the world and there is nothing you can do to stop me. 

Terry Gilliam’s realized version of a botched film he tried to make but the budget never came through until 2019.

            As much of this can illustrate a finer point of Don Quixote, it proves that while much of Don Quixote is meant to be sardonic in nature, many would argue that modernity is relative to the geographic location of readers. Macondo, the fictional world of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, is much a mystery to readers in America and Europe.

            What I gathered in my journey with the Man of La Mancha, is that the primary theme of virtue was Don Quixote’s last and final stand. 

            Now, at every page, it was telling me to quit. It was almost punching me at every page to say, “You have read Proust, Melville, Sarte, Conrad, Marquez, Burgess, Nabokov, but this is the book that is going to defeat you. I am the master of all who have come before me.” I could feel Cervantes laughing at the modern reader, as he should, but even so, learning about Cervantes does help me decipher out my emotions toward the book. And I think it works. Andrew Klevan would argue that “Hamlet is the birth of the modern man” but every country and person has there own specificity about who is modern or not. What makes modernity is that each culture has to create a slice of culture to be able to rival literary hero’s so that I can push a country’s boundaries, and the more difficult a book was, it also makes the book a challenge to any reader.

            Again, as much as I enjoy difficult books, Don Quixote did a damn good job of providing a challenge, and the insanity of the story even showed at page 156, when Sancho is begging to know the reason of his journey. I would have told Sancho “Run, unless you are getting health insurance, leave.”

            Don Quixote is a reminder why epics are called epics. If video gamers are reading this, and you love open world games, Cervantes invented the word “side quests.” Not literally but I’m being facetious. It’s long, and dense, and it will make you consider why you read books in the first place.

            Cervantes, like many writers of the past, did not take into account the modern reader, because as Grossman describes, “his language was not archaic and quaint” but translators help bring an ancient book to new life. But even Grossman declares the originality of the book is what attracts people to Cervantes, and herself.

            What is ironic is that when piecing together my thoughts, it’s probably best described as “Goddamnit Sancho just give up on him.”

            Much of the narration gives more weight to Sancho, and the irony of having to help Don Quixote is much like a social worker trying to calm down an old person. But Don Quixote seems fully aware of his foolish antics. It’s about going mad while consciously aware of it. And the reader, might not get it at first, the power and humor of Don Quixote can be described with the phrase, “You love me because I am handsome and I love you because you are ugly.”

            What’s funny is that I said to myself, “Where the fuck are these windmills?” Then I kind of got that filmmakers always used the windmill analogy too much to summarize the whole journey of Don Quixote, and couldn’t tell each moment in the book. 

            It’s one of the most hilarious lines in the novel, but also gives us the sense that Cervantes had no road map as to where he was going. Much of the episodic nature of the first part is important to the way Cervantes uses Don Quixote as the last and final push against old age and death. 

            Don Quixote, is often outmatched at fights, and funny enough, he knows when to run away. It’s hilarious and often times had me thinking, “What do you have to prove to Dulcinea, lord Simp meister Quixote.”

            And many of the young will laugh, but what would you do for an Instagram influencer model just to notice you? I mean, did you ever just jump up and down because you were happy? Don Quixote does this in order to feel alive, but at least he’s driven by love, and not hate. Would you do that for an Instagram or tiktok influencer, or someone you cared about, in real life, or just chase after someone you couldn’t have? 

            I know the phrase “simp” is popular today, but for Quixote, he would have acted like a boomer and scoffed, gestating that “I’m doing this for love of my Dulcinea” and even if I were Sancho would say, “Whatever you say, Boomer.” But also, I hate to break it to people is that Dulcinea is a figment of love and the way Dante seeks Beatrice in Hell. 

            But after a while I saw Quixote as someone I wanted to help too, but I was glad Sancho was doing all the work. 

            Mostly, it’s a journey within a journey, and many characters, like the Knight of the Sorrowful Face, proves that Cervantes wrote this in order to create the episodic and the poetic together. 

            Because by the second part, much of the narrative focuses on Sancho as he and the Knight of the Sorrowful Face make up much of the narrative with Don Quixote, and to me, this story was more about Sancho. Much of the later narrative doesn’t really coincide with the first part, as the first and second parts are meant to be read as two separate books. As if you are reading part 1, 2, and 3, of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings in one whole narrative, but divided in separate stories. The endlessness of the story, helping characters along the way created a sense of honor and devotion, to being a knight.

            It begs the question: “Why read this book anyway? What do you gain to prove by this?” And the answer I would give is, “Because you can’t push a button all the time and think you are gaining knowledge. Knowledge must be earned, not pressed on a controller. You don’t reload a gun in real life with pressing X or Y. Books are meant to sit with the author and see what is produced through language, and while much of Quixote is earned through reading, your brain will thank you. Yes, your brain. The thing you complain of others not using. Not everything should be an algorithm crated by companies with watered down entertainment for you to decide haphazardly and naively that ‘it’s okay’ without giving yourself over to an author or entertainers demands.”

            Now, don’t be insulted what I have said. Much of literature is about earning your right to read the book again. I guess this is a diversion, because much of Don Quixote is meant to be a challenge, and if you want challenging books, Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes is the one for you. 

            Ultimately I was not defeated by the book as Cervantes promised, but it’s the celebration of the epic that pulled me in. Much of what I read would have to be re-read again, and that’s the joy of books, and any piece of entertainment. It’s not difficult for difficulty’s sake. It’s meant to challenge and give you depth and appreciation.

            By the end, the read is conscious of Don Quixote and his dreams. 

“Here lies the mighty Gentleman 

who rose to such heights of valor 

that death itself did not triumph 

over his life with his death. He did not esteem the world; 

he was the frightening threat 

to the world, in this respect, 

for it was his great good fortune

 to live a madman, and die sane.” 

            It ultimately proved my point I thought when I was reading this, and all I could feel was respect and honor for Don Quixote, as he wanted to live his life how he wanted to. I should feel pity and sorrow, but I was glad to take this journey with Sancho, Don Quixote, and all the characters he meets along the way. I don’t have this regret, and the book still sits on my desk like someone that can’t leave my attention. Like it deserves another read.

            The only criticism I have for the book is that if you really want to read the book, I would say get a hard cover edition so that the font is bigger, but then again, just take your time, and accept it. But still, however you read it, digital or print, it’s a classic for a reason.

            Final Analysis: 4 out of 5 windmills

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. Also, he writes on https://louisbruno.substack.com, where you can support him directly. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

Also available on podcast too: 

http://www.breaker.audio/the-real-louis-t-brunos-blog

https://www.google.com/podcasts?feed=aHR0cHM6Ly9hbmNob3IuZm0vcy81MDA5ZDY3MC9wb2RjYXN0L3Jzcw==

https://pca.st/504t7jxr

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Music/Soundtrack Review # 2: Liquid Swords

2 Apr

-For the Uncensored!

With this review, I could say in two words, it’s great, and then call it a day, but that would not explain overall what GZA’s second album “Liquid Swords” meant to me, but I was just six years old when this album came out. “Liquid Swords” released on November 7th, 1995, I didn’t really listen to the Wu-Tang Clan until Wu-Tang Forever. So, when I think about this album, the RZA and his dirty beats that were made to match GZA’s words and the way his rhymes fell on a beat and skipped rope around any MC who came around him. His original name, was “Gangsta G” but spelled “J-Z-Z-A,” on the credits for “Protect your Neck.” 

           Born in Brooklyn, New York, August 22nd, In an interview with the Guardian, he explains his inspiration thoroughly: “Writing for me really started in the 70s as a young child. I used to read a lot of nursery rhymes, and I learned a lot of those rhymes word for word. I would go to an aunt’s house, and she would let me play music, and she had The Last Poets album. At that time, albums didn’t have explicit stickers on them, so some of the songs had profanity on them, and I was moved by that. I would listen to those songs, to the flow, and I’d balance it back and forth with the nursery stuff I had. A year later I moved to Staten Island [from Brooklyn]. I had a few DJs in my neighbourhood that would play music in the streets. There was no hip-hop yet, there were just DJs that were playing disco, funk and pop music, and we would gather round, go to the parks and dance and enjoy ourselves. I would often take trips from Staten Island to the south Bronx, which is originally the first place of hip-hop. I was only around 11 years old, and sometimes RZAwould come with me. The DJs and MCs there were way more advanced than the neighbourhood I was coming from. It was just a culture that I was moved by, and I knew that was my calling.” ((https://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2015/jun/19/mogwai-stuart-braithwaite-interviews-wu-tang-clan-gza-atp)

What makes GZA powerful is the lyrics he espouses on each track. On some tracks you can hear a young boy talking, and the dialogue is taken directly from the dub of “Lone Wolf and Cub.” In the most famous of his lyrics, he pontificates, 

“Fake niggas get flipped
In mic fights I swing swords and cut clowns
Shit is too swift to bite you record and write it down
I flow like the blood on a murder scene, like a syringe
On some wild out shit, to insert a fiend”

            The visuals he employs is a staple of GZA’s wordplay and he was nicknamed the Genius, by his first album, Words from the Genius. Truly, if this was the first real rhymes on GZA’s debut album, it was only a blessing because this is like reading a crime novel, as it’s being told from countless hours of perfection, as it was supposed to represent how words can create visuals. 

            The second track, “Dual of the Iron Mic” includes two of the Wu-Tang members, Masta Killa and Inspectah Deck, but the opening from GZA is almost as synonymous with the way the Wu-Tang built up there cache of lyrics, but also was the foundation of every single member to step up there game post 36 Chambers album. 

“Picture bloodbaths and elevator shafts

Like these murderous rhymes tight from genuine craft

Check the print, it’s where veterans spark the letterings

Slow moving mc’s is waitin for the editin

The liquid soluble that made up the chemistry

gaseous element, that burned down your ministry

Herbal vapors, and biblical papers

Smokin exodus, every square yard is plush

Fuck the screw-faced photo sessions facial expression

Leaves impressions, try to keep a shark nigga guessin” 

            It’s where each rhyme at the end of his sentence that the rhyme, should be a half syllable, but the way each word is meant to compliment each other at the end, without being lazy, as most rappers might do today. It’s almost a rise as the first track is meant to introduce GZA, but duel of the iron mic, with Masta Killa and Inspectah Deck, allows him to set the pace of the track.             

What the third track “Living in the World Today” does is allow you to be caught off guard by the beat. RZA was working at master levels, as he captured so much of the sound and funk that you would hear in New York City. The kind of persuasive beat making skills that would take someone twenty years to learn. According to the Wu Manual, Rza used a “Emulator SP-122” where Bring the pain “was made on that machine.” “Ensoniq EPS” and an “Ensoniq EPS-16 Plus” were also RZA’s equipment at the time. (The Wu-Tang Manual. The RZA. Berkley Publishing Group. New York. 196)

GZA’s lyrics were some of the finest at the time, as the mixture of the words covered over the grimy beats were some of the best that GZA could offer. Upon its release no one had heard anything like GZA as his lyrical proficiency made sure that each syllable was used to take up most of the bar (or lyrical line):

“My rhyme gross weight vehicle combination
Was too heavy for the Chevy’s is chased out the station

            When you look at the first two lines it’s here where you see GZA’s storytelling techniques amplified, as what would combine some very difficult word play for any other rapper, makes you see that no line is wasted. “Double-edged” at the first line would compliment the rhyme at the second line where it ends at “unleaded shit.”

“Double-edged was the guillotine that beheaded it
Gassed up, fuckin with some regular unleaded shit”

            “Gassed up” is used it’s to allow some momentary breathing room, to counter the compound sentence scheme, making it a tightrope, “fuckin with some regular unleaded shit”. You can see that with this phrase almost creates a closed in line that provides a closed in rhyme, almost layered.

            The fourth track, Gold, does provide some solid lyrical word play, as it does provide more proof that GZA is constantly thinking. GZA, as he does provide some great narrative techniques to the rhyme, as this is what makes GZA and his technique, but the most poignant rhyme that can be examined is here:

It’s mandatory that I supply all my troops with mega firearms
Big apes and spread ’em out like crops on a farm
To get cream, sometimes they repaint the scene.”

            Let’s break this down. These three lines represent how each word in the lyrics are rhymes bouncing off one another. “Mandatory” jumps onto the line “spread em out” as “mega firearms” reflects “farm” in the second line. What is best to point out is that what you see in these lines is that the syllables are interwoven, as the “cream” rhymes with “scene” closing off the first two lines that spent so much time carrying so many words with half the complexity. It’s not complex at first because GZA does this so effortlessly that you don’t really listen or study the lyrics the first time.

The fifth track is one of the most defining songs of the Liquid Swords album, and the most popular song that everyone knows. “Cold World” is to me, a track that gives GZA the lyrical credibility he deserves. I can say that on “Cold World” is where we hear Inspectah Deck’s story telling capabilities too. What doesn’t surprise me is that GZA, for someone who has accomplished so much, the track still resonates, as while the opening from Lone Wolf and Cub gives us more context to “Cold War” it provides the mindset of RZA’s influences on the track. 

While the track lyrically follows a simple pattern, the simplicity behind GZA’s lyrics prove that his “half short twice strong” way of rhyming is no different than Romantic poets who didn’t use big words in order to make there point known. He seems to repeat a closed in rhyme, as he repeats compound rhymes repeated within each line. There’s so many lines to quote, and it’s often the song most GZA fans remember. 

Around the fifth track, you start to hear what the rest of the album will turn into, as many who were just listening to it, maintain the strength of the album, is the crux of both GZA and deck’s rhyme scheme. What this track represents is the 90’s, and how grimy beats and story telling lyrics were so popular, and many could learn from GZA’s technique. 

Much of his lyrics do follow the pattern around the examples I have brought that are a bridge to what the rest of the album can sound like. Much of the first few lines from the five tracks are a story that do create a tension, and mood that can put the listener into the world of GZA’s lyrics laced with RZA’s beats that give GZA his place among the greatest lyrical MC’s that many would try to copy. 

The opening, by far, is one of the best opening bars in the entirety of Hip Hop, other than Inspectah Deck’s opening for Triumph.

It was the night before New Year’s, and all through the fuckin’ projects
Not a handgun was silent, not even a Tec
Outside as I’m stuck, by enemies who put fear
And blasted on the spot before the pigs were dere
You know hoods robbers snipers new in sight, fuck blue and white
They escape before them flash the fuckin’ lights”

            What is important is the delivery, as the openings of GZA’s bars on Liquid Swords set a precedent for Hip Hop and Rap, since its inception. Even here, we see that his words are merely just another outlook on life that no other rapper has done. It’s not stringing words along together. It’s about balance. Byron seems to be what I see most in GZA, as both GZA and Lord Byron are economical poets, both separated by time and distance, but the poetry of the two men are what make these two seem so alike, as 90’s rappers are known to place rhyme and words in the same lines. 

            With the Sixth track, labels, we hear RZA remark, “you got to read the labels.” Because if you don’t read warning labels you will die. Labels are what we see on milk cartons. But not on labels. Labels don’t tell you they are going to give you a shitty deal. If there was any possibility of that, no one would make art, but if that did happen, you have to read the contracts. Labels starts out with a signature GZA line, 

“Tommy ain’t my motherfuckin’ boy
When you fake moves on a nigga you employ
We’ll all emerge off your set, now you know God damn
I show living large niggas how to flip a def jam.”

            This song originates on GZA’s and RZA’s early career in the music industry. GZA’s first album, Words from the Genius, signed to Cold Chillin, and RZA, then performing as Prince Rakeem, Tommy Boy, were dropped after poor sales. Such is the nature of the entertainment business, but GZA crafted “Labels” as a reminder of how corrupt the industry can be. Naming famous companies that don’t care about artists and what they need to be happy and maintain a career. The song does illustrate how GZA can take lines like 

GZA is not really a punchline master, but his rhymes did reflect the thought he put into it. What is interesting is to study the rhymes, “The soft comedian rap shit ain’t the rough witty, On the reel to reel it wasn’t from a tough city, Niggas be game, thinking that they lyrical surgeons
They know they microphone’s a virgin, And if you ain’t boned a mic you couldn’t hurt a bee
That’s like going to Venus driving a mercury.”

            While this passage represents the GZA’s prowess, the rhyme is not overly impressive, since the fifth track represented a crescendo, as we are journeying through GZA’s world and what it means to be an MC in early 1990’s New York. In the early 90’s, gaining reputation is through battling and making a name for themselves. But that’s almost like sword work for a MC, and sharpening his mind and sword for rap was like learning insults, and how to form it on a beat. GZA is not really known for being a punchline master, but his rhymes do reflect the thought he put into it, that do make. What is interesting is to study the rhymes, you can see the progression of the lyrical weight attached to each line.

The seventh track, 4th Chamber, is different because this does open up with the Wu-Tang Clan members doing there best to create a mood and atmosphere, and while the Clan do an excellent job, they are merely saving the best for last when GZA arrives, The banks of G, all CREAM downs a vet Money feed good, opposites off the set” as he makes his prescience known, as his wealth represents the strength for veterans.
“It ain’t hard to see, my seeds need God-degree I got mouths to feed,” as he speaks of what his children need out of the world with knowledge for the mind, body and soul, “unnecessary beef is more cows to breed” while speaking about the enemies he may face in the world, when it comes to his experience with competition. As an aside, God, when said by the Wu-Tang Clan are represented by black men and women believing they are Gods, from the Nation of Five Percenters. Created by Clarence 13X, he narrowed down the tenants of Islam, as it broke away to help the people become righteous and use logic over emotion. 

The Eighth Track, Shadowboxin, presents a beat that is often more associated with jazz, as it’s meant to help provide a cadence for both Method man and GZA. Method man, in his earliest days, was developing his taste for the commercial medium. But GZA, as he is the smartest member of the clan, “Form like Voltron he would be the head” as it provided GZA takes his time, marinating his lyrics over RZA’s beat.

            As an aside, the beat, if you hear it, it does present how much of his style would be then later copied by other well known producers. Sampling is part of the Hip-Hop and rap producing community. The beats are not meant to go on forever, like a guitar solo would present a way to build tension with the singing. Much like Rage against the Machines guitars were almost akin to a scratching needle on a record. 

            Method Man does provide much of the template for his release, as it is rather different for Method Man. Method Man is deliberately rhyming slowly, as it’s almost like he follows the kick of the drum with the beat he’s rhyming over. But it’s GZA who does illustrate much of the clan’s origins when it comes to there background in battling MC’s “I slayed MC’s back in the rec room era” as he does provide some insight to other MC’s who don’t get it “Check these non visual niggas with tapes and a portrait” as he uses rhymes like a gun “before I use the rhyme RZA scratch off the serial.”

            It’s a track that upon hearing it repeatedly, the rhymes were perfected as much of the second half of the album is pitched to represent someone taking a shower. Like GZA’s trying to impress us because Method Man would become the face of the group for the first half of the clans career. 

            The 9th track, Killah Hills/10304, goes back to GZA’s importance as a storyteller. I would argue that without GZA’s story telling skills that carries the world of Shaolin within his rhymes, most of the clan would not have made it past there first albums. “ Restaurants on a stake-out So order the food to take out Chaos, outside a spark steakhouse” as it’s back to the grungy gritty beats Liquid Swords is remembered by. The rhymes detailing a deal gone wrong, as it’s almost from the hit men who are doing the job that a deal gone bad. “Maintain the power, I feel the deal’s gone sour Nigga missed the wedding, late a fuckin’ half hour” GZA paints a portrait that continues to detail his own sordid world of filth that from a bystander would take his crime thriller with fiction level quality. And his man who bought land from Tony Starks While he was contractin’ bricklayin jobs in city parks.” Ghostface Killah would take on the moniker of Tony Starks, as that would carry his career for 25 years.

            I’m going to skip over the tenth track as I am not interested in that track as much, as the track flexes Ghostface Killah, and the eleventh track is not my favorite, but the most important rhymes from GZA are not found on there. These two songs are not bad but do not reflect the strength of GZA’s lyrical swordplay. It’s almost like hitting tennis balls for him.

            The Twelfth Track, I Gotcha Back, is probably one of the most notable of GZA’s songs in his timeline. The first stanza of GZA’s lyrics prove that much of the criminal aspect he was building up to, is leading to the twelfth track, and the stanza is presented in full:

I was always taught my do’s and don’ts
For do’s I did, and for don’ts, I said I won’t
I’m from Brooklyn, a place where stars are born
Streets are shot up, apartment buildings are torn
And ripped up, stripped up, shacked up and backed up
From fiends, cause the bosses on the scene, they got it cracked up
Kids are slinging in my lobby
Little Steve and Bobby
Getting paid but it’s a life-threatening hobby
Yeah, they still play hide-and-seek
The fiends seek for the crack, and they hide and let the cops peep
Grown folks say they should be out on their own
Before the gangs come and blow up their mom’s home
Because they lifestyle is hectic, so fucking hectic
Blaow! Blaow! Blaow! Bullets are ejected
My lifestyle was so far from well
Could’ve wrote a book with a title “Age 12 and Going Through Hell”
Then I realized the plan
I’m trapped in a deadly video game, with just one man
So I don’t only watch my back, I watch my front
Cause it’s the niggas who front, they be pulling stunts
Back on the Ave of Lavonia and Bristol with a pistol
Sticking up Pamela and Crystal
You know your town is dangerous when you see the strangest
Kid come home from doing the bid and nothing changes
What is the meaning of CRIME (what?)
Is it Criminals Robbing Innocent Motherfuckers Everytime?
Little shorties take walks to the schoolyard
Trying to solve the puzzles to why is life so hard
Then as soon as they reached the playground, blaow!
Shots ring off and now one of them lay down
It’s so hard to escape the gunfire
I wish I could rule it out like an umpire
But it’s an everlasting game, and it never cease to exist
Only the players change, so

What we see from this paragraph is that somehow, the rhyme is like a threaded barrel in a gun. The lyrics are tight and they bounce off the next line, as the syllables prove they are providing a dance, as someone would move there hips on the dance floor, except he’s using words to produce the inflection in his voice too. 

Now, I won’t be covering the thirteenth track “B.I.B.L.E.” or “Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth” because GZA does not appear on the track at all. I would probably discuss that alone, since it’s Killah Priests most famous track. I think the importance of GZA’s Liquid Swords still holds influential over hip hop heads, and proves that rap did indeed rely on lyrics to tell a story and engaging enough to provide multiple listens.

            What keeps me invested as rappers as poets, as Byron was to his peers, GZA’s Liquid Swords is a mashup of culture trapped within sound can take listeners on a new journey. While I only mentioned one relation between Rappers and Poets, rap, in the 90’s, is personified in how technique and voice match the way the rhymes and poems do help create genuine authentic pieces of art. 

            This is a must own for anyone who wants to investigate rap as an art form, and the WU-TANG Clan took rap to places the next generation can’t go. 

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. Also, he writes on https://louisbruno.substack.com, where you can support him directly. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

Also available on podcast too: 

www.breaker.audio/the-real-louis-t-brunos-blog

https://www.google.com/podcasts?feed=aHR0cHM6Ly9hbmNob3IuZm0vcy81MDA5ZDY3MC9wb2RjYXN0L3Jzcw==

https://pca.st/504t7jxr

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Godzilla Vs. Kong (2021): A Review

1 Apr

-For the Uncensored!

Out of all the movies that have pleased me the most in all my time watching cinema, King Kong and Godzilla are two titans of cinema. Every Godzilla fan shunts the Matthew Broderick movie into outer space where it belongs, so GTFO with that bullshit. And yes in fact I loved Peter Jackson’s iteration of King Kong, because it was a loving ode to the original story by Demille and proved that the Kong could still be in fact, the King. Kong: Skull Island (2017) didn’t impress me that much, but most of the newer iterations passed Peter Jackson have never lived up to the momentum of Peter Jackson’s version in 2005. Plus, it was the only time Kong fought three T-Rex’s. It’s still an amazing scene and Naomi Watts still delivers a great performance in it.

            What I would say is that I am pretty luke-warm on the recent iterations, and Godzilla King of the Monsters (2019), produced by Legendary studios, was okay, fun but not so bad. What Godzilla Vs. Kong does well is manage to juggle all the human characters from the recent films, but also put enough titan clashing to make Harry Houser cream his pants.

            After this, there will be spoilers ahead, so if you haven’t seen the film, please, go watch it now, or if not, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

            In Legendry’s produced Kong Vs. Godzilla (2021) transported to Skull Island, by APEX, rivals of Monarch, to investigate a Hollow Earth dimension, inside the center of the earth (this is where I thought of Doug McClure), where it houses most of the creatures, and can fight against Godzilla. Who is being a major dick right now. Seriously, he attacks Kong in the ocean. What gives Zilla? Not smoking enough to calm your ass down?

            But something is wrong at Apex, the rival company to Monarch, from the previous films, which is housing secret technology. And Kong knows sign language now, which is a plus, but also plays into Michael Crichton’s Congo (1980), a little.

            The interesting part of this film is that Emma Russel, who returns from Godzilla, King of the Monsters, gets involved with a conspiracy theory whistleblower who helps her find out what’s going on at Sublevel 33. The conspiracy theorist laments about his dead wife and talks about “when this flask is empty you know I’m done.” Josh, the plucky best friend, tags along, and pretty much does nothing the entire time. Honestly, this might actually prove that Alex Jones was right about everything. I guess all the water and nuclear energy turned Godzilla gay.

Because inside here, we find it. “Skull Crawlers.” Emma and the conspiracy theorist guy get trapped inside the pod, and they are taken to Hong Kong, through a tram tunnel system.

            When Kong is in Antarctica, he wakes up disoriented, covered in snow, and sighs. Playing with the snow. He’s instantly calmed by Jia, a young girl who can communicate with Kong. He’s asked to go through in the hole where they are about to travel through with the Heav station to find the weapon that might help them defeat Godzilla. They are pushed a thousand miles in two seconds, into another world, Hollow Earth. (it literally makes me think of films like the Earth’s Core in 1976 and Land that Time Forgot in 1974, both starring Doug McClure). 

            After a battle with another snake bat creature, ripping off its head and eating it, he makes his way to a chasm, and then with gravity turning him light, lets him fly. The orchestra reminds me of Vangelis at this moment, and it’s pretty astounding. 

            The humans in the Hollow Earth follow Kong, where he picks up an ancient axe, and roars, and like the humans to spoil the moment, they say, “he’s home” and I’m like “no shit, thanks for that exposition. Now let me enjoy this moment.” At least Peter Jackson let me enjoy the moments Kong had without exposition to make me acknowledge how I felt. I think the exposition could have been dialed back.

            Emma then find there way to a “sacrifice pit” as they are now faced with Mecha Godzilla. Her father, making an appearance from the second film, now knows that his daughter is in Hong Kong, as Godzilla goes to fight off MechaGodzilla, knowing that there is trouble in the animal kingdom. 

As I had thought, Kong was onto the enemy. But they find out Gidorah’s brain, a Titan brain, is being kept alive. So, it wasn’t just MechaGodzilla either, it’s creating the neural link up to Mechagodzilla through a living supercomputer. Somehow I wish Doug McClure was somewhere in this film.

Kong’s axe glows, and it draws radiation from the core, but Apex then uses a little drone to take a sample of the radiation for APEX. But APEX has no idea if the energy source will break the MechaGodzilla prototype or not.

As this is happening, Godzilla is shooting his nuclear ray into the ground in Hong Kong, and shoots a way through to Hollow Earth. So this begs a question, “Did Godzilla drill a hole straight into China?”

Once you see this scene, you will think that. It’s what I heard about my Asian neighbors as a joke “They are digging a hole straight into China.”

So, Kong jumps through with the axe, putting the axe against the cave, riding it down like a goddamn APEX predator he is.

The fight between Godzilla and Kong in Hong Kong (not meant to rhyme) leads to buildings being destroyed by both Kong and Godzilla, and Kong’s axe blocks Godzilla’s radiation beam. In the first fight on the sea, Godzilla was king, but on land, Kong is King. So the two are both shows there disadvantages.

Through a twist, Godzilla dominates Kong again, but Godzilla sees a worthy adversary and walks away again. As the leader of APEX tries to start his MechaGodzilla, it breaks away from the pilot, and then starts to gain sentience.

When MechaGodzilla and Godzilla fight one another, MechaGodzilla has an advantage, firing missiles at Godzilla. The situation with Kong is that he’s still barely alive, but they need to restart his heart. They use the Heav ship as a compressor, and the little girl, Jia, signs to Kong that Godzilla is not the enemy. Kong even knocks his shoulder back into place like an 80’s action hero, and begins his fight anew.

As Emma and Russel, and the Emma’s friend, Josh (who has mostly been comic relief and the plucky best friend) are about to die in Hong Kong, trying to disrupt Mecha Godzilla’s satellite connection, the friend takes the conspiracy theorist drink and pours it over the machine. It turns out to work. Godzilla blasts a radiation shot into the Axe, and Kong fishes him off proper. Cutting off his arms, slicing his neck, and ripping off his head for a final touch. 

With MechaGodzilla defeated, Emma is reunited with her father, and the conspiracy theorist meet her dad, and invites him onto her podcast. Josh has his final moment when Emma embraces her dad, and he said, “It was Emma’s idea.” It kind of was a funny moment, as her father said, “Shut up Josh.” At the end, it looks like Godzilla is trying to fight again. Only the two have an understanding, looking at each other like 80’s action stars, with Kong letting go of the axe, and Godzilla disappears off into the ocean. 

Man, if this was in a theater, I think I would have still loved this just the same, but with Mecha Godzilla spoiling it for everyone, it kind of kept me unsurprised. But it’s still a pretty great film for 2021. But I think it manages to embrace a cheesiness that works for the film, without being overtly cheesy as the film seems to be aware of the inspirations it draws from, and much of the film relies on the audience’s ability to suspend disbelief, and have fun. And fun it is. But some of the exposition to help make me feel things didn’t work for me, and I already knew how I felt about certain scenes. But it is kind of an era for the Legendary films monster epics. Now, all we have to do is make Call of Cthulu now.

Final Analysis: 4/5

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. Also, he writes on https://louisbruno.substack.com, where you can support him directly. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

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Art and Culture 30: The Passion of the Christ and the Macrocosm of Cancel Culture

29 Mar

-For the Uncensored!

I guess readers are wondering why I would choose this film as part of an Art and Culture instead of Ancient Culture, because in terms of Jesus’s Last Supper all the way to the Resurrection, What better way than to tackle the 30th Art and Culture column than with such a topic as this. Mel Gibson’s film captured the grace and love of Jesus when his entire life was leading up to the moment of Salvation for the human race. Now, there are a few things to discuss. The film’s impact, its controversy, but also how the film represents the rise of Cancel Culture. 

-The Film

            Released on February 25th, 2004, by second time director Mel Gibson, and the screenplay written by Benedict Fitzgerald (his father Robert Fitzgerald adapted the Odyssey into its most well known poetic verse read today). The film stars Jim Caviezel (Thin Red Line and Person of Interest fame) Maia Morgenstern (as Mary, Mother of Jesus, in her only film role ever) and Monica Belluci as Mary Magdalene (Matrix sequels, The Apartment, Tears of the Sun, and even appearing in a small role in Bram Stoker’s Dracula). Now, let’s get the film and plot out of the way first. It As Mel Gibson said, “He knew this film would divide people” and I think no one was prepared for the way society would see the film. According to IMDB, the budget was “30,000,000” and in the first weekend of Mel Gibson’s Passion debuted at # 1 at the box office making over “83,848,082” and in the United States alone grossed “$ 370,782,930” and worldwide box office “$ 612,054,428.” It was a financial success, while critically it divided critics and the fans, while on IMDB it holds a “7.2” out of 10, which was not great, but it did prove that there was a market for religious films but also making sure it could captivate an audience or create discussion/word of mouth at the same time. (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0335345/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2) That’s why you saw Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, and Ridley Scott’s underappreciated Exodus story, too. It helped raise awareness of religious films, and how you could show violence in religious films to create a strong purpose for the violence. And Entertainment Weekly, in 2006, June 16th issue, called The Passion of the Christ, the most controversial film of all time, at there number 1 spot. But why did this happen?

Mel Gibson faced unmanageable hurdles trying to make the film. No one wanted to distribute the film and studios thought it was “blasphemous” when in everyone’s mind, whoever has read the New Testament, knows this story backwards and forwards. With Icon Productions, Gibson’s company, he produced the film himself and set up distribution deals with theaters, himself. 

            What Mel Gibson did was shock the world. Many films focused on Jesus wouldn’t have taken such a bold direction in where Gibson showed us. He not only showed the horror of ancient culture, but how brutal it was, in film. It’s the film that proves, even with one viewing a year, you get more than you think. I watch it every year on Passion Friday, as I think it’s a film that serves as Jesus’s last will and testament to the people of the world who are suffering, and you would think, in the film, it serves as a time capsule to Mel’s devotion to Jesus’s Passion.

            What Gibson did is show the brutality and the sacrifice Jesus took upon, as it used the oldest trick of film and literary knowledge, In Medias Res, as it did portray not only a spiritual Jesus, but focused on the human side. It details Judas’s betrayal and suicide, as well as Peter betraying Jesus three times. It even shows Lucifer, who was tempting Jesus, to give up on his cross. What this film does different is play into the horror movie side of the Passion, as even Judas, is haunted by devils. There’s a moment in the film where Mary sees Satan in the crowd, and Lucifer’s smile is almost mocking Mary. 

            Even Pontius Pilate is given far more depth than any Passion play could produce. The scourging is one of the most criticized moments of the film. While many would say, “if the violence was not in the film, it wouldn’t highlight Jesus’s commitment to save humanity” and the other would say “it’s too violent.” But they give no reason as to why it’s too violent. It’s probably because those watching can’t face there sin, as even one of the Rabbi’s is disgusted by the violence and walks away. It’s probably what a lot of people did who weren’t prepared for it, but if you didn’t think scourging was bad, then you didn’t think to look up the term Passion. Passion, or Pati in Latin, means to suffer. 

            Satan, in the film, is bald, and is played by a woman. I think it’s interesting to say that Mel, casting Satan as a woman, and bald, plays apart of how Satan can be androgynous to most people. 

            With excellent cinematography by Caleb Deschanel and Gibsons Directing, and acting by all the players in the film, as we probably get one of the most intense falls in a passion play ever made. As she remembers a time when Jesus fell as a child, she runs to him, and he says the words, “I will make everything new.”

            To religious scholars, those words are not said in any of the gospels in the Passion Play, but spoken in Revelation, as Jesus sits on his throne in Heaven. It’s a scene that works every single time I watch it. I sit there, and I think “this is a debt I can’t pay.” 

            I think it’s impossible to understate the way the scene plays out. Everybody who watches it is affected by it. It confirms something deep and cerebral that Christians don’t talk about. At the second when all should feel hopeless, it even ties in the soldier who is to pierce Jesus in the side, as he says, “Who is that?” The scene plays out like someone watching it in real time, as the soldier then becomes a convert later on. 

            It’s hard to talk about this film without feeling emotional. It’s a film that doesn’t work on intellectual conversation, but showing through action of Jesus’s faith in what he must do in order to achieve his goal. 

            But even Mel Gibson shows what’s in front of him as he’s on the Via Delarosa. In Latin, it means the road of suffering. Even Veronica, who washes Jesus’s face, makes an appearance. It’s amazing how even I know that they didn’t pierce Jim Caviezel’s hand, it still works, every time. I get this feeling that I can’t owe the debt to which Jesus paid. 

            Jim Caviezel was in his peak physical shape to play Jesus. Another scene that people talk of is the end, after he is taken down from the cross, and Mary looks into the camera. It’s probably one of the most haunting stares in all of cinema. As Mary almost looks at us as we are to blame for what happened to Jesus. And in a sense, it’s right. But the Resurrection scene, as he walks up out of the grave, with a hole in his hand, and begins his journey into the underworld.

            And as the Rapper The Game said, on My Life, “hate it so much Passion of Christ need a sequel.” Reportedly, Mel is making a sequel to the Passion, as of today, the IMDB page, as of writing, is set for 2022 release.

-Themes of Cancel Culture in the Passion of the Christ

With the film out of the way, this s where much of the Cancel Culture aspect plays into life, not just the film. Consider being Jesus, when you are the Son of God, and nobody wants to believe it. Scorned, beaten, and crucified, and for being the Son of God. Even Pontius Pilate, when he’s asked the crowd of Rabbi’s and Jews to pick between Barabbas and Jesus, they choose Barabbas. It’s hard to consider this scene without thinking about how Cancel Culture is very much the same way.

            Peter and Judas are part of a larger scheme when it comes to Cancel Culture. Judas betrays Jesus, and he can’t take it back. When he tries to return the money, he knows that he can’t stop it. Peter denies Jesus three times, as Jesus told him he would do. Sometimes, we don’t even think about these things. 

            We turn on each other all the time, and at least Peter asked Mary for forgiveness. Cancel Culture today is not a physical death. It’s not a death that people face physically, but emotionally. Families are torn apart and they deny each other. With these two examples of Peter and Judas, they represent the gamut of how Jesus’s death represents a way of Cancel Culture, at its most ancient form. 

            Peter denied Jesus because of fear of being attacked by a mob. It’s no different when friends turn on each other today on social media. Cancel Culture plays a part of mob hysteria, and it’s no different when Jesus was betrayed. 

            Friends, and the disciples, except John, Mary, and even Mary Magdalene are the only three who follow Jesus to the end. 

            Ancient Cancel Culture meant far worse. If Jesus had just escaped and lived a happy life, it wouldn’t mean much. Much of suffering is created by a mob who want vindication and to be told what to think and feel. 

            It’s no different when the mob turned on Jesus. Social Media is no different. We praise the worst people over the innocent. It’s in human nature to turn against each other, but is it worse when you die a physical death, like Jesus. But today, the idea of praising someone like Barabbas is why Cancel Culture has always played apart of the human psyche. We chide what’s wrong and praise what’s right. 

-The Controversy and Society as a Whole

Yes, yes, I know, detractors always bring up Mel Gibson’s drunken rant to a cop, but to me, he didn’t break a law. He didn’t shoot someone. Now, for people out there who want to call Mel Gibson an “ant-semite” are the same people who never learned what it was like to forgive. Hollywood and the elitists canceled Mel Gibson, as to some imaginary reason that this film promoted anti-Semitism (which it doesn’t and you’ll probably find more anti-Semitism in a Phillip Roth novel than Mel Gibson’s film. Besides if Mel was drunk, he gets a free pass, but even I doubt the situation even happened). The media tormented Mel for years, and while he was exiled, this is when Mel faced more than enough harassment from the media. They didn’t care about the film in the end, but Gibson exile is apart of grand scheme of Cancel Culture, too. 

            Who made the media judge, jury, and executioner? This is when I saw what Hollywood really was. They exiled there most talented to promote people like an untalented sow like Lena Dunham. It’s easier to pretend why the controversy should matter, but it’s when Mel was treated worse than any movie star ever was. Brando made similar comments during the 90’s, about how “Jews controlled the business” and he went away for a long time, and then Hollywood accepted him again. 

            Today, it’s much different. Good thing Mel got in trouble when he did, but now, in America, we are facing persecution from liberal biased media that will go out of there way to ruin lives, but praise Cardi B for “WAP” instead of Dr. Seuss. Even Gina Carano’s exile from the hit Disney + show the Mandalorian, as it’s rumored she is coming back to the hit Star Wars show, but we’ll find out later.

            From 2016-2020, persecution in America by social media mobs, overrated dead celebrities with a career one foot in the ground, and musicians thinking they can go back to playing imaginary characters, need to be reminded of how if the American public can be cancelled, so can celebrities too. 

            But if you have followed Jesus, you know what it’s like to be persecuted. But to be cancelled, to be constantly reminded of your sin, and not letting you be able to recover, is part of a larger problem than just being whipped and crucified. Plus, the way the media attacked Mel over and over for 10 years was when I stopped paying attention to the media, and started following my own path. As persecution still exist, and cancel culture is accepted by the liberal media, 

Final Analysis:

            If Cancel Culture is not rejected by most of the world, then persecution will not only happen at a mental level, but physical as well. With this being the week of Jesus’s Passion, let’s all take time to reflect on how we should treat each other. If you didn’t learn anything from the Passion of the Christ, it was to treat each other fairly and not be judge, jury, and executioner. No one knows what we really go through, not from a Tweet, and people shouldn’t be exiled for what they say either.      

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. Also, he writes on https://louisbruno.substack.com, where you can support him directly. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

Note from Louis: Thanks so much for reading my articles and being such a constant reader, and listening to my podcasts. I usually write two to three articles a day during the week, but one to two on the weekends. Also, if you haven’t already, please subscribe, share the articles. All help is appreciated. If you do subscribe, you can have access to top tier articles and reviews, and also grow my page to help keep stay corporations mad all day. The war for freedom of speech starts with us.

Also available on podcast too: 

www.breaker.audio/the-real-louis-t-brunos-blog

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Music/Soundtrack Reviews # 1: Max Payne 3 by Health

28 Mar

-For the Uncensored!            

Now, there are many things to discuss when it comes to Max Payne, and as I made the case that Max Payne 3 is one of the greatest finales in all of video game history, not on a technical viewpoint, but on a musical scale too. What makes Health’s synth soundtrack of Max Payne 3, almost synonymous with the game is that every time I play it, there’s a sickening feeling I get. Not in a bad way. 

            Music for the last fifty years has always fell into the cliché of having to make scenes that fall flat emotionally work. We all have heard that type of orchestral background music that sometimes makes the film more important than it should be. You wouldn’t be remiss if you thought of every 80’s comedy that had to make the scene funnier than it should with the music acting as a scale to help make the shitty lines delivered funnier, or help create a mood that isn’t funny. Like, no one thinks of great the Weekend at Bernie’s score is to know that the hilarity of the film is won through the acting and the scenes the cast play. So, music, in that film is secondary, and the story is key.

            What Health understood about Max Payne is that the iconic theme song to Max Payne is integral to the video games series. If you didn’t hear Georgio Morodors classic synth music to Midnight Express (1978) or Scarface (1983), as the music to both films matters that you can’t separate the two. Health demonstrates the emotional beats of Rockstar’s game as they didn’t even translate the Spanish dialogue almost isolating you, and the synth sounds have to serve as a comfort to Max and the player. If Health fucked up the soundtrack, the fans, including myself, would notice it.

            When there is house music playing, you get that Max doesn’t like it, and it’s far less inviting, as it’s meant to hinder Max’s psyche. In the panama scene, in Chapter 12, he’s working security for Raul Passos, but as you wake up from a hangover, you have to shoot your way out of the boat. The music gives you that creepy feeling as even the narrator, Max, has to remember the past, questioning his line of thinking. 

            What Health accentuates is the tension, fear, and paranoia of being lost, alone, isolated, and what Max goes through is only accentuated through the synth wave sounds. There are moments when Max can play a piano, in the middle of the game, and he plays the theme song from the series. It’s pretty fun.

            But to me, all of the sound and synth create this dramatic effect where as I’m watching Max Payne 3 on YouTube, it brings back the danger and action that is embedded with the violence and story. It’s one of the only game soundtracks that is integral to Rockstar’s finale to a great game, but the synth sweetens the deal.

            I would also list Health’s synth achievement with Vangelis’s Blade Runner soundtrack, too.

            All of the soundtracks I listed, Health brings together, as much of the game’s story is meant to be a blur, as strobe of lights appear around Max, as if it’s to represent broken memories that are coming together. When the synth plays, it brings all of Max’s sins into the foreground, as he’s the doomed detective, and everyone he tries to protect dies, the synth heightens the sadness of Max’s journey through Sao Paulo’s rich parties, slums, and ultimately through the soundtrack, Max’s redemption.

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. Also, he writes on https://louisbruno.substack.com, where you can support him directly. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

Note from Louis: Thanks so much for reading my articles and being such a constant reader, and listening to my podcasts. I usually write two to three articles a day during the week, but one to two on the weekends. Also, if you haven’t already, please subscribe, Thank you so much. All help is appreciated. If you do subscribe, you can have access to top tier articles and reviews, and also grow my page to help keep stay corporations mad all day. 

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Justice League: The Snyder Cut Review

22 Mar

-For the Uncensored!

In the dawn of cinema dwindling away, there is a reason why Justice League: The Snyder Cut means a lot to people. HBO Max, upon its premiere, on March 18th, crashed the site because everyone wanted to watch it at midnight. The story is almost a Ann Randian type of narrative that is long and creates such a weave of characters that only does permit the long form to see Snyders vision to completion. Over 4 hours long, it does represent Snyder’s major themes of heroism, mass worship, fear, and leadership in a world divided. All these themes sound so relevant in America 2021. When Steppenwolf says, “This world is divided. No Kryptonian. No Lanterns” (short for the hero Green Lantern), it feels oddly relevant. No one wants to work together. 

            The cast includes everyone from Gal Gadot, playing Wonder Woman, and Ben Affleck as Batman, to JK Simmons (from Oz’s Schillinger and Juno fame) and Amy Adams (Nocturnal Animals and Junebug fame) returning as Lois Lane from Man of Steele and Batman V. Superman. It was amazing to see all the names of each star have their own spot as they didn’t push them together on one title card. 

            The Snyder Cut bring us back to the end of BVS, and Superman’s last dying scream echoes around the world. When the mother boxes are found, that means Steppenwolf, who serves Darkseid (pronounced Dark Side), with the help of the Mother Box, almost took Earth. So the leaders of earth protected them, until Superman died.

            The scene where DarkSeid jumps off his ship, lands with his fingertips pressing in the dirt, and brings a handful of dirt in his hand, is awe inspiring. How could this character be so interesting when he has said nothing so far?

            The action scenes have the slow motion feel of Snyder’s 300 (2006), a Frank Miller comic. I didn’t look at my phone at all. I see why people were disappointed with the Whedon version of the film, but we’ll get to that later.

            They do get the sexual tension between Bruce and Diana. Even though Diana is still thinking about Steve Trevor. Batman, Aquaman, Cyborg, The Flash, and Princess Diana all have to be ready. Everyone has there pain and sorrow, and all of them are working to find themselves when the world has lost Superman.

            Steppenwolf finds that Earth, after 100,000 planets, has the equivalent of Anti-Matter, which is what Dark Seid was looking for.

            When Aquaman, and all the Justice League assemble, all they have to do is take down Steppenwolf. But not without Superman. The Motherbox can reanimate living and dead organisms, to change, or die. It brought back Barry Allan, or Cyborg, and so they use it to bring back Superman. You get that small hint of the dream that Bruce Wayne felt in Batman V Superman.

            I think the part that dragged was the first hour, but after that, it really did work. I think it had vision. I enjoyed a lot of the film. I think Zach Snyder deserves another chance at DC. I think he introduced a lot of themes that DC would run with like the Metahumans.

            Cyborg wants to link himself into the Unity, the three Mother Boxes, but Barry, the Flash is tripped up but it’s too late. The box explodes. But The Flash helps Cyborg enter the Unity, and when he’s confronted by his dead family, “come join us, you don’t have to be alone again” and he doesn’t fall for the trick. “I’m not broken, and I’m not alone.” 

            With the Mother Boxes destroyed, and with Steppenwolf killed in specular fashion, Dark Seid sees this, and he says, “We will use the old fashioned ways. Ready the Armada.” He even has a part where he sits in the famous sculpture, the Thinker, by Rodin. 

            The epilogue is about twenty extra minutes tying up all the loose ends. I won’t spoil the ending, because it needs to be experienced. I would definitely like to see Zach Snyder finish what he wanted to do. Snyder did in four hours what most Marvel films could not do. Tell a story. Create a complicated yarn into a visionary feast of darkness and light, and create a grand scope that is movie of 2021. Don’t let the Oscars fool you. Nobody cares about independent cinema anymore. 

            But most importantly, the movie, originally was plagued with studio interference, and with Snyder’s daughter, Autumn, committing suicide, forced him to leave the picture prematurely. DC hired Joss Whedon, but the horrible release and the mixed reviews didn’t help the 2017 cut either. This is the way Justice League needed to be watched. In its full veiny glory. 

            Final Analysis: 5/5 

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4.  His next series, City of Sand, will be available sometime this year.

Note from Louis: Thanks so much for reading my articles and being such a constant reader, and listening to my podcasts. I usually write two to three articles a day during the week, but one to two on the weekends. Also, if you haven’t already, please subscribe, donate, like my articles and comment, buy my books, leave a review. Sharing the articles and podcasts helps above all can help if you can’t donate, too. Thank you so much. All help is appreciated.

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Art and Culture # 23: The Art of the Message

11 Mar

-For the Uncensored!

Ah, the message. A message, by definition, has meant so many forms of expression over time. It went from the oral, cave, and when literacy entered into humanity’s sphere, writing and letters, were then used as a means of letting people know what they are thinking. Then when communication, and especially novels were definitely apart of the way the world communicated and how the Art of the Message took to many outlooks of expression into the modern era. Pigeons were still a very popular way of spreading messages, and if a pigeon came, it was either a sign of distress or love. As the Industrial Revolution took place, we had the birth of the telegram, which you could tap messages to express yourself, but it was used by businesses, and was limited to regular people being able to communicate or spread a message. You could consider the Turing Test as a means of communicating decrypted messages that helped the Allies in WW II achieve victory against the Axis coded communication. It seemed like a new breakthrough in communication and the messages a machine like Turing created enhanced our way of communication to what we had later on. In the modern era, there were fax machine, pagers, cell phones, smart phones, SMS, e-books, Social Media and text messaging. All are now our ways of reaching forms of communication and helping family and loved ones stay informed about family health, and happiness, but also allow businesses to communicate their message to the public. Computers and iPad also allow individuals to state their opinions and address important sales of art, or let people contact them in order to purchase an individual’s books, art, or anything they have to sell. 

            Now, why bring up the history of communication? Art has always relied on a form of communication. Communication is intermingled with Art, and how we read, write, draw, and understand the world we live in. Art and messages have never been that far away from our imagination. When we see the Pieta, sculpted by Michelangelo built during 1495-1499, to represent the pain of the Blessed mother holding Jesus after he was crucified. It’s a majestic sculpture if you are at the Vatican. It is one of the zenith Renaissance sculptures that depict a classical form of a message to the beauty and pain. But with pain is a message. I know that most people “don’t want a message” in things, but the lack of a message in art is never going away.

            It can be woven into the art, as the “ideology can meld with the aesthetics.” No art is without a message, and it can be communicated in any form where art is represented. 

            Although communication is represented with artistic forms, while anger, can also be a form of communication in art, too. If that wasn’t allowed, there would be no transgressive art forms to help channel our deep psychological nerve endings to calm down our primitive side of life. Now, saying that art leads to violence is not a thing. If people are inspired by the art to commit violence, who is really to blame? Is the artist a good communicator and is in touch with the primitive side, or the person who can’t ration what is separated between a book, film, or game? Sometimes artists can be too good at communicating pain and sometimes the participant thinks the art they are taking is talking to them. 

            This has happened, to me too, but I don’t start acting out the fantasy of violence in real life because the art itself does it anyway. If you wanted to ban a book, like Catcher in the Rye, it’s not that it pushes anyone toward violence, as many like Chapman, said before, quoting the book in his testimony. 

            As an aside, I would ban Catcher in the Rye because it was boring and overrated. I mean, the kid just runs away from school, says a few curse words, and then disappears. I’m kidding, but you get the gist. Also, I would never want to ban Catcher in the Rye because I want people to see how boring and overrated it is.

            But is the writer, filmmaker, or painter, is good at communicating violence, anger, rage, does that mean the art is to blame at how effective it is, or if it’s not, should it be left alone? Does subtlety make up a big portion of how we see violence and the world presented in any art form. So is the message of violence so important to remind people it’s bad. I don’t think we needed exposition phrases uttered on paintings from HR Giger to represent the horror and unknowable of aliens. Does a message written on a beautiful painting say less or more when the pictures don’t need words. Paintings can escape tedious messages, but it’s what you see in the painting to represent your own thoughts.

            In stories and fiction, exposition has sometimes added more to the conversation, and sometimes, mystic conversation can help bring an air of mystery to the text you are reading. Not everything has to be didactic, like the bible, but sometimes descriptions help portray the message of a landscape. Sometimes beauty doesn’t need many words to communicate what the world needs to know.

            But is being explicit help either? It all depends on what an individual sees in the art they are ingesting. No matter if it is violence, beauty, or tragedy, a message can hep guide us through personal turmoil and get rid of our frustration, and communication, through art forms, rely on audience participation too. But if art is taken away because that art is effective, then that’s another worse sign in society, too. What message does that create?

 -Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4

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Cowboy Graves: A Review

9 Mar

For the Uncensored

Robert Bolano is a figure that many writers often look to, and I hold as one of the greatest Chilean writers of his day, but like many writers, Bolano started off as a poet, and he became a writer to pay the bills for his family. Robert Bolano was born in Chile 1953 and passed away in Spain in 2003. The power of reading a writer, and all his work is realizing what is good or not. But I never mount that type of hype on a writer that aims to do something different every time. There’s so many great works by Bolano, which to me, is 2666, A Little Lumpen Novella, Nazi Literature in America, The Savage Detectives, The Third Reich, The Romantic Dogs, are all great works of Bolano that I hold dear. But there’s something clear when a publisher starts to release the writer’s posthumous work. It’s the work that Bolano never got to publish during his lifetime, and publishers don’t usually publish a writer in his entirety unless there’s profit to earn. Much of a writer’s life is built in secrecy and much of Bolano’s life is probably more myth than fact.

            It seemed like poverty forced Bolano to write fiction, but Cowboy Graves, three novellas, proves when a writer is trying less complicated versions of his stories, in novellas, to achieve the same goals a longer novel would then create. Atmosphere and mood are sacrificed in novellas to attain a purity of the plot. “Cowboy Graves” shows an example of how a character is looking for his father, but in that amount of time, he’s just moving from place to place, until he meets communists. And when asks what a communists “looks like,” they provide an answer. It seems that Bolano is full well of what fascism means, and honestly, when Europeans speak of fascism, they honestly hide the fact about the different branches of fascism too, and where socialism comes into play. 

            But there’s a line that does speak to me out of the whole novella. “What use is a gun if it’s not loaded.”

            I think the way this line is a reminder of being in danger, and being unloaded makes you think about the uselessness of a gun when it’s not loaded. Bolano is gifted with normal everyday perceptions that remind of me of Don Delillo. Simple, yet elegant, and deadly. So, I think Cowboy Graves, the first novella, is the major stand out between French Comedy of Horrors, and Fatherland. The last two novellas. Fatherland does remind me of a simpler version of the Third Reich.

            Then for some odd reason the book seems to be almost delving into itself, as there no rising arc or consequence to any of the characters actions throughout the book. No one learns anything. In the afterward, explains that for “Bolano it’s always about the journey rather than the conclusion.”

            Sometimes Bolano stories are a yarn that’s immediately cut off when it was just getting good. But the journey is re-reading it again, and you could almost deny his writing as being too subtle, but you have to pay attention to it in order to get the finer points. Sometimes it can be mystifying, but in Buddhism, the journey is what’s important. Maybe there is more left to Bolano’s career that has yet to be published still.

            Final Verdict: 3/5

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4

Note from Louis: Thanks so much for reading my articles and being such a constant reader, and listening to my podcasts. I usually write two to three articles a day during the week, but one to two on the weekends. Also, if you haven’t already, please subscribe, donate, like my articles and comment, buy my books, leave a review. Sharing the articles and podcasts helps above all, too. All help is appreciated.

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Down and Out in Paris and London: A Review

7 Mar

-For the Uncensored!

While many would begin to imagine that George Orwell’s seminal book 1984 is the crowning achievement of his career, you have to go back to a book called “Down and Out in Paris and London” as the book is an memoir, essentially about a time when George Orwell was broke and he had to work as a busboy and laborer. If the wisdom you reach from this, and to explain it in simple terms, “don’t hate poor people,” that simple analysis doesn’t do the book justice. The book, Down and out, gives some inspiring lessons on what a life is when you are poor.

           It’s concerning that right now, in American history, in 2021, poverty has reached an all time high. 

            In a less dangerous time, people can’t understand poverty and the words written in Orwell’s memoir, provides more insight than you like to imagine. He goes into money and how important it was to his time as it is now.

            After being robbed one day, and left with “just 47  francs—that is seven and ten pence” he had” to live at six francs a day, and from the start it was too difficult to leave much thought for anything else. It was now my experience od poverty began—for six francs a day, if not actual poverty, is on the fringe of it. Six francs is a shilling, and you can live on a shilling a day in Paris if you know how. It is  altogether curious, your first contact with poverty. You have so much thought about poverty—it is the thing you have feared all your life, the think you knew would happen sooner or later; and it is all so utterly and prosaically different. You thought it would be quite simple; it is extraordinarily complicated. You thought it would be terrible; it is merely squalid and boring. It is the peculiar lowness of poverty that you discover first; the shift that it puts you to, the complicated meanness, the crust-wiping.” 

            That passage alone is just the beginning of a life no one should ever have to endure, but reading the book gives me such hope. As I have learned, you don’t have to work if you are royalty, but in America, you can make your own royalty with your own hard work.

            As a Russian duke is trying to get out of paying for a meal, the police would want to see him if he didn’t have any money, but allowed his royalty to get away with not paying. “A duke is still a duke even in exile.” 

            What the horrors of poverty teach others is that it’s predestined, in Europe, if you aren’t of noble blood. An unshaven man tells him, “We never argue. Controversy is a bourgeois pastime. Deeds are our arguments.” 

            Deeds, in down and out, are managed by the jobs that the poor and lower class are responsible for. One job required physical work to “walk and run about fifteen miles during the day, and yet the strain was of the work was more than mental than physical.” But “one has to leap to and fro between a multitude of jobs –it is like sorting a pack of cards against the clock.” 

            “Plongeur is one of the slaves of the modern world. Not that there is any need to whine over him, for he is better off than many manual workers, but still, he is no freer than if he were bought and sold. His work is servile and without art; he is paid enough to keep him alive; his only holiday is the sack. He is cut off from marriage, or if he marries, his wife must work too.  Except by lucky chance, he has no escape from this life, save into prison. At this moment there are men with university degrees scrubbing dishes in Paris for ten or fifteen hours a day. One cannot say that it is mere idleness of their part, for an idle man cannot be a plongeur; they have simply been trapped by a routine which makes thought impossible. If plongeurs thought at all, they would long ago have formed a union and gone on strike for better treatment. But they do not think because they have no leisure for it; their life has made slave of them. The question is, why does this slavery continue?” 

            It’s a question that is complicated as the book progresses, and Orwell has made it through the fire. But this is answered with “Some people must feed in restaurants, and so other people must swab dishes for eighty hours a week. It is the work of civilisaiton, therefore unquestionable.”  

            But he considers this too. “Is a plongeur’s work really necessary to civilization? We have a feeling that it must be “honest” work, because it is hard and disagreeable, and we hav made a sort of fetish of manual work. We see a man cutting down a tree, and we make sure that he is filling a social need, just because he uses his muscles; it does not occur to us that he may only be cutting down a beautiful tree to make room for a hideous statue. I believe it is the same with a plongeur. He earns his bread in the sweat of his brow, but it does not follow that he is doing anything useful; he may be only supplying a luxury which, very often is not a luxury.”

            The pay is not worth the time spent, especially for a “bahinchut” and they earn “thirty or forty rupees a month, and cough their lungs out after a few years.” 

            But beds, for the poor, Orwell experiences is beyond distraught. “We slept fifteen or twenty in a dormitory; the beds were again cold and hard, but the sheets were not more than a week from the wash, which was an improvement. The charge was nine-pence or a shilling (in the shilling dormitory the beds were six feet apart instead of four)  and the terms were cash down by seven in the evening or out you went.” 

            The poor, Orwell claims, “are despicable” but Orwell points out “people are wrong when they think that an unemployed man only worries about losing his wages; on the contrary, an illiterate man, with the work habit in his bones, needs work even more than he needs money. An educated man can put up with enforced idleness, which is one of the worst evils of poverty” and through his thought process comes up with the idea and states, “the man who really merits pity is the man who has been down from the start, and faces poverty with a blank, resourceless mind.”

            The experiences and thought Orwell has, provides such keen insights that only someone who lived through poverty can experience. Sometimes, it takes an extraordinary mind to learn how to make due with what he has, but I think that many people need to have shit jobs in order to know how to escape the poverty of terrible jobs, too.

            “The evil of poverty is not so much that it makes a man suffer as that it rots him physically and spiritually. And there can be no doubt that sexual starvation contributes  to this rotting process. Cut off from the whole race of women, a tramp feels himself degraded to the rank of a cripple or lunatic. No humiliation could do more damage to a man’s self-respect.”

            What is impossible is to know is that mental illness at that time was not discussed at the time Orwell had written this, but sometimes, the deception is that work is not bad, but Orwell does have his own thoughts and words. Orwell, after all this, finally comes to the conclusion, “Still I can point to one or two things I have definitely learned by being hard up. I shall never again think that all tramps are drunken scoundrels, nor expect a beggar to be grateful when I give him a penny, nor be surprised if men out of work lack energy, nor subscribe to the Salvation Army, nor pawn my clothes, nor refuse a handbill, nor enjoy a meal at a smart restaurant. That is a beginning.”

            What I saw in Orwells words is that poverty must be experienced sometimes in order to find something better, but being poor should always teach you humility, and if you really don’t parse anything from these words, as I saw much of Orwell in these words as a man who had no other choice. But to blame a statue for the death of nature, as it might be a teaching moment, statues show the wealth and strength of a nation. Statues are there to remind us of the evils that used to exist. I think hard work does help teach you to be strong, and teach you how to be tough, but if you aren’t progressing past the point of a dishwasher, something is wrong with society.

            It seems that poverty, in Europe, is a curse, because if poverty is a curse that does destroy a physical body, it can kill you emotionally. If suffering is not only mental, it must take a stronger person to live it and get out alive. Poverty in America can be curtailed with hard work, but if people don’t have jobs, then the problem might not just be social, but a mental endemic to solve too. 

            But if more people read Down and out in London and Paris, poverty might just be remedied with compassion and love, but also understanding how society can not help everyone.

            Final Rating: 4/5

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4

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Hell Raiser: “A Classic Never Duplicated”

5 Mar

For the Uncensored!

What hasn’t there been said about a classic like Hell Raiser that the sequels never got right? To begin, Hell Raiser, released in 1987, from master horror writer, Clive Barker, and directed by the man himself, studies the case of a family, that is not quite right. Not quite right is an understatement. The wife, Julia (played exquisitely by Clare Higgins in a performance she has never reached since) is having difficulties in her marriage to her husband, Larry (played with a impish attitude by Andrew Robinson) and his daughter, from a previous marriage, Kirsty (played by Ashley Laurence, who still commands and steals each scene she is in, and also delivers such a captivating performance, with top notch energy and youth, as it was her first film) who is a young girl budding with sexual energy, and she stays with a boy, Steve (played by Robert Hines as he’s the dopey unaware love interest who doesn’t realize the horror taking place with Kirsty’s family) instead of living at the house.

            What turns into a family drama is then laced with lust, as Julia finds a picture of Frank, and she remembers a time when Frank and her have sex, and the expressions on Julia face bring us to the center of the story. As her husband, Larry, who complains of a cut, and his blood touches the floor in the room where his brother, Frank, squatted in. The blood disappears, and he is resurrected back to life. We realize Julia doesn’t love her husband, and when she investigates a sound, a man with no skin on appears, and he tells her, “It’s me Frank.” He was brought back to life from blood, as he needs victims to become whole again. Frank shows Julia what happened to him, as he is captured by demons, after opening a box to there dimension, and he needs to return back to his normal self through more sacrifices.

            There are some really scary scenes that still say so much about the film, without saying too little, but the violence and the emotional thrill is still there every time you watch it. The palpable emotions of a fucked up family, where then the most well-known characters, the Cenobites, with the most well-known character, Pinhead proclaims to Kirsty, “We are demons to some, angels to others.”

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbogOqTzyxY

            This line is paraphrased in Kentaro Miura’s seminal work, Berserk, in Vol. 13, where the Godhand say the same exact phrase. 

            After Julia brings home victim after victim, Frank starts to lust over Kirsty, and what ends is Kirsty having to close the box that Frank opened, as her father, Larry, now consumed by Frank, says before he explodes, as hooks are piercing his flesh, “Jesus wept.” You get from that scene alone of how Frank enjoys the pleasure he is taking in from the Cenobites. When Kirsty closes the box, she closes it and then makes her escape with the young fuck wit boyfriend Steve. 

            Upon thinking about Hell Raiser, there are so many things to talk about, but the bare bones plot seems to fill and create such a strong film that the various sequels have never seem to match or attain. Not even Jurassic Park sequels have the intensity that the first Jurassic Park had. It was complete and seemed to tell a whole story about lust and how achieving ultimate pleasure has consequences. 

            The same is said for the Hellraiser sequels. They seem like they are too preoccupied with following the trend the movie made, but never living up to the promise of making a story that compliments the first.

            The thing that stands out the most to me is that Hellraiser could be argued it was done cheaply, but Barker did what he could, and it still presents a unique admirable pleasure in watching a fun scary horror film that is inviting and delivers every single time. What people don’t know is that Alan Parker, who directed The Midnight Express, helped with Hell Raiser too.

            So, the fact is, Hell Raiser, in its form was way ahead of its time. I don’t consider the techniques Barker used for SFX cheap because it was 1987. It works fine still, and only the prudish would attack it, because maybe they are afraid to admit it’s scary, too. 

            While the film remains at a solid 7.0 on IMDB, it doesn’t represent the brutality and honesty the film presents, that no one is inescapable from Hell, and after all the years, Hell Raiser still is an original horror film that answers the question that Hell is real, and there are so many pleasures awaiting. 

Note from Louis: Thanks so much for reading my articles and being such a constant reader. I usually write two to three articles a day during the week, but one to two on the weekends. Also, I hate asking for help. I really do. But I want to stress that to keep my content ad free, please subscribe, donate, like my articles and comment, buy my books, leave a review. Sharing the article helps above all, too. All help is appreciated. If you do subscribe, you can have access to top tier articles and reviews, and also grow my page to help keep stay corporations mad all day.

-Louis Bruno is the author of more than 15 books, including, The Michael Project, The Michael Project: Book 2: The Lost Children of Eve, Thy Kingdom Come, The Disintegrating Bloodline, Apocalypse Soldier, Hierarchy of Dwindling Sheep. His books can be found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Lulu. He can be found on Gab, https://gab.com/thereallouistbruno, Minds https://www.minds.com/lbruno8063/, and Parlerhttps://parler.com/profile/therealLouistbruno/posts. Instagram @lbrruno8063 and @louisbrunoofficialbook. He has written for the Intellectual Conservative and Ephemere. His latest, Come Home, Young One, a dark fantasy novel is out now at Lulu.com. Link is here: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/louis-bruno/come-home-young-one/hardcover/product-pw8q7z.html?page=1&pageSize=4

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