Apologies for my absence. I am now released from my corset and trying to get back into a routine. The routine seems more constricting than the corset somehow. After twenty-five years of conforming to schedules and whalebone, I lack the required self discipline.
Anyway, I have discovered that corsets are certainly no more comfortable than they were several years and quite a few pounds ago. It is hard not to panic as the final layer goes on and the seam is stitched into place. The correct procedure is to breathe out, so that there is more room to tighten the laces, but that is not as easy as it sounds. How voluntary is breathing? It is difficult to deliberately stop. The exercises that you use to increase your lung capacity as an actor discourage the practice of high, shallow breathing; it is bad form. Just as ballet training stops you from turning your toes inwards, an actor's training forces you to engage your diaphragm. It was my old ballet master who saved the day though. In times of trouble, an incomplete pirouette perhaps, or a wobbly arabesque, the cry would echo through the studio as you attempted to regain your poise, "Where will you be when the war starts?" A little overwhelming for a ten year old, but inordinately useful as a tool of comparison in times of minor crisis.
The corset is laced, the dress fastened, the seam sewn. The small battle of the ribcage is won. I shall worry about the war when I've learned how to dress myself.
Funny and gentle Francois Ozon set in the 1970's. An opportunity to watch Depardieu and Deneuve at play.
NEVER LET ME GO
A close adaptation by Alex Garland of Kazuo Ishiguro's heartbreaking novel. Like the book, the film leaves you with plenty of questions about the world it depicts but it does so in style. Beautifully shot with strong performances and sailing very close to home.
Following his excellent Gone Baby Gone, Ben Affleck directs this slick heist movie set in his Boston home town. Tense.
THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES (El secreto de sus ojos)
A beautiful slow-paced thriller from Argentina. Strong performances from Soledad Villamil and Ricardo Darin. A treat.
THE OTHER GUYS
Extremely silly but very funny buddy cop movie with Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg.
THE KILLER INSIDE ME
If you've read Jim Thompson's book on which this film is based, you will have some idea of the difficulties involved in making and watching it. First person narrative of a charming killer. Truly disturbing. Not sure if that's a good thing.