All posts by Zemo

The Night Comes for Us

I will continue with another movie review. This time a film I have seen on Netflix recently.

 

The Night Comes for Us

 

Carnage. That is one word summary of the film from Indonesian director Timo Tjahjanto. Relentless action from start to finish, with bones breaking and people getting killed in the most creative ways, martial art extravaganza with tons of blood. So much blood. This film gives any slasher horror run for its money in terms of spilled blood. Who cares there are plot holes you could drive a semi through. There is a guy getting killed by a cow’s femur.

The main protagonist Ito is one of the Six Seas, elite group of henchmen working for the Triad whose mission is to spread terror in their name. During one of these missions after killing bunch of unarmed villagers with only one little girl left alive soon to be shot as well. But here Ito has a change of heart and instead of killing the girl he kills all his men and decides to save the girl bringing the wrath of the Triad upon himself and everyone that tries to help him. Many took issue with this set up saying why this girl especially when we find out he has been massacring whole villages for the past three years. But why not a random girl? We have seen it many times in films like this, daughter, niece, best friends daughter, girl who helped him in the past, girl who reminds him of his dead daughter…This film boils it down to its basics. Just a girl that he needs to save, and as he says at one point, himself as well. A symbol, a reason to unleash the violence on the bad guys.  The story is down to its bare bones, which many took issue with but which in my opinion was the intention. Most characters motivations are very simple, Tahig is just helping his friends, because that is what good friends do, White boy Bobby looks for redemption and the bad guys just want to kill them because they have been told to. The only little fleshed out character is Iko Uwais, but ultimately he just wants to prove himself against Ito. Then there are characters we do not even get an explanation as to who they are or what they interest in the little girl is like the motorcycle girl, in credits only called as the Operator. But she is badass without all that. The actress playing her is the Hammer girl from Raid 2. And what happened to Ito’s girlfriend, major focus in the beginning and completely forgotten later.

In summary The night comes for us  is the most action film this year, most violent, most bloody and most martial arty.

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Yet another November

Not a day passes where I do not think I need to go back to writing and still I never do. Always find a reason to postpone it or do something else instead. My mind was set that I will start this November no matter what and inspired by the NaNoWriMo I will write every day, not a novel like in the challenge but anything really. And still I already missed the first day. I was writing though just did not post anything online. And boy am I rusty. But that is the point, to practice, to challenge myself and hopefully create a routine. For my first post I will review a movie that I have seen last year at IndieCork Film Festival and promised myself and the director I will post a review on imdb. Another proof of my amazing procrastination, a fucking year. But here goes (as I am posting this I just see that I have tried this challenge last year as well, but only managed to make one post so hopefully I can beat that this year. The bar is very low at least…)

Crone Wood (2016, dir. Mark Sheridan, Ireland)

This review is long overdue. It has been exactly a year since I have seen the film at IndieCork Film Festival and many of the finer details are not so clear in my mind anymore. But I promised myself to write one to support this Irish indie production at least in this smallest of ways.

When the film started I thought to myself, please not another found footage horror. But soon the film changed gears and not for the first time and I started to realize this is not another Blair Witch Project and the film began to resemble more the original Wicker Man. It was clear that the latter in particular was a big influence on the director but it was not another tired copy but a great film in its own right.

What makes this type of horror a good film, and this is true for many other films not just horror, is how well you establish the characters at the beginning before the bad stuff started happening. At that stage you have to like or hate them enough to care what happens to them. And Crone Wood succeeds to do just that, to introduce the lead protagonists to us in the short amount of time thanks to the solid performances of the actors playing them and the strong direction by Mark Sheridan. You can tell throughout the film that he is big fan and student of the horror genre which helps him to skilfully avoid the usual clichés as he plays with the twists and turns and our own expectations. Highly recommend to check this one out.

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Crone Wood (2016)

November Challenge

Already starting one day late I decided to join the November write every day challenge. The content therefore will lack the usual quality which the three people that will read it will forgive me. But this is something I need to do and planned to do for couple years now. By publishing this statement I can’t give up so easily like I usually do. 30 days 30 posts starting tonight. ​

Atop of Ireland

Few weeks ago we finally manage to organize a hike to the highest peak in Ireland the Carrauntoohill mountain in county Kerry. I have been planning to go for ages now the only problem was to find a day when we are off work and the weather is acceptable.

We arrived at Cronin’s Yard where we left the car and started the hike

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Soon enough the path disappeared completely and we had to rely only the basic directions I got from the net the night before. I had certain points with coordinates we had to pass but even I thought the path will be more clear.

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I have chosen the O’Shea route with the most scenic views but also higher in difficulty.

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Carrauntoohill left and Hag’s tooth on the right, the O’Shea route is in the middle
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some parts required “light” climbing
After reaching the first flat level the hike became bit more steep…

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And then in a typical Irish fashion the weather changed from clear sky to a huge hailstorm and in a matter of minutes the landscape changed slightly and the temperature dropped significantly.

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Through an dried out waterfall we climbed to another flat level but the climb was not over…

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Almost on top now we took the opportunity to take few pictures as it looks another storm is coming our way. The hike was bit more difficult than anticipated but the view from top was well worth it.

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The highest sheep in Ireland about 1000m above sea level.
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We made it to the top together with a big storm which turned the visibility to zero

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the only picture not taken by me. Nice old Canadian lady took it before hiking to four more peaks nearby making us look like amateurs. (note the scarf on leg is holding my pants together)
Towards the top I managed to rip my pants just when the temperatures reached bellow zero so I was literary freezing my ass off. I hold them together with my scarf for the rest of the hike.

Luckily the weather improved on the way down. But using my phone for navigation and picture taking depleted my battery and I did not bring my big camera with me so I just enjoyed the hike. We took a longer route back but less difficult giving us a chance to see some more of the scenery.

The whole hike took 8 hours after I had to drive for an hour to Cork and going straight for a night shift for another 8 hours. I was really tired but happy tired…

some other atop responses

rfljenskythe girl in a bubbleIndira’s blog  and many more

in response to weekly photo challenge “ATOP” the challenge

Instagram @zemogula

Weekly Photo Challenge: Vivid

Lately all I manage on my blog is to respond to the Weekly Photo Challenge but at least it is some sort consistency and maybe soon I will be able to post some of my fiction writing as well. Who knows anything is possible.

I was attending an evening class and we were supposed to bring 10 photographs with the theme ‘Nature’. The one condition was that each has to be different (subject, composition, style) and I thought I should have one close up of a flower and these were my 4 candidates

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Which one did you think I chose?

On the way to the K-Fest

Last weekend we went to Killorglin a small town in county Kerry with lots of abandoned buildings which were transformed for the weekend into exhibition spaces, theater stages and concert halls by artists from all over Ireland. As a part of Camden Palace – an artists community centre in Cork we also took over one such building. I mentioned before that i look after a art house cinema and I was showing some animated poetry film at two. The country around Killorglin is just beautiful so even though we stayed only few minutes drive away from the town we decided to take a scenic detour through Gap of Dunloe. And On the Way we came across few obstacles…

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You shall not pass

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They came into the road, stopped until I take a picture and continued on…
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Its one of the famous Irish “I dare you” road signs.
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We almost did not make it on time but it was worth the trip.

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Post-apocalyptic visions

I am working (or will be – go procrastination) on a series of photographs that capture images as if in a post-apocalyptic world. Whenever I pass a broken down car or a overgrown abandoned lot I have to take a picture. I have this vision for a series but right now I concentrate on my art house cinema and the festival we are creating in Cork so it remains a vision. Hopefully since I publish the plan I will have an incentive to do it.But I do have some images that I could share…taken in various parts of the world. They are not quite making my vision justice but here they are anyway.

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in response to Photo Challenge – Broken

The Forces of Volcanoes

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Sitting in our homes behind our laptops we feel safe and we often forget that we are moving around the sun 108000 km per hour on a ball made up mostly of seriously hot molten rock. Well until Mother Nature reminds us and then you can’t fly anywhere because a tiny volcano erupts in Iceland. We were lucky that the volcano next to it did not awaken. Katla is one of the biggest volcanoes and together with Hekla, they are the two most violent ones and also the only two out of total 130 (!) with female names. He did not know why… Continue reading The Forces of Volcanoes

One more for the motion

I hope you forgive me that I write another post for this week’s photo challenge. I just would like to share with you this very cool photoshoot my friend David organized to show us how to use multiple flash set up in a studio photography which was very helpful and interesting. Even more so because the model Vera brought her little toy with her – LED hula hoop. And with a combination of flash and slow shutter speed we were able to get some nice images. The ones David did were much nicer of course but I am quite proud about few of mine as well. I felt very professional with all the flashes and remotes, umbrellas and soft boxes and of course a model.

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This is the lovely Vera without the hoop with a three flash set up.
in response to the Weekly Photo Challenge: Motion

Weekly Photo Challenge: Motion

During our recent trip to Costa Rica (which was absolutely amazing btw), there were many things in motion and lots of it was difficult to catch. For example these hummingbirds.

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You should see the amount of failed photographs. My girlfriend was already anxious to go, but I needed at least one semi-good one. I read somewhere they are the only bird species that can fly backwards on account of their aerodynamics and wing flatter speed (is that what it is called?). Later I took a night walking tour in the rain forest and we have seen one hummingbird sleeping on a branch. Only its beak was sticking out. The guide said it is because it is so long they could hurt themselves when they would try to tuck it in like other birds do. We obviously did not want to disturb them with flash so no picture.

I did get some practice when still back in Ireland on my girlfriends parrots. (well they are not hers but her housemate left them when she moved to a different country and my girlfriend the all animal lover and protector had to take care of them)

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Animals in cages that is just wrong so at least they could fly around but I do not agree with keeping wild animals as pets in general. That is what I liked about Costa Rica, where all animals are state protected and you cannot hunt them or keep them as pets.

And after we explored the rain forest and volcanoes in the end we finally made it to the Pacific.

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my “bird”…also took many tries

But all this images are trying to freeze motion in the moment so i will post one final image from the city of Cork where I live which shows the motion in all its beauty.

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In response to Weekly photo challenge: Motion