Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Ah, to be a teenager... Actually, can you believe someone who claims they were happy in their teens? First love. And the mystery of parents - who are these people I live with? The director, Richard Ayoade, obviously has a couple of Hartleys , Andersons (Wes) and Jeunets in his collection, but without copying any of them. The film is stylish, without that getting in the way of the story - it's not just surface. The two main actors are very good. Also Noah Taylor as the dad, who I remember in an Australian coming of age film he did in the 80s called The Year My Voice Broke. I don't remember much from that film except that I liked it. I should find a copy and re-watch it. 

Anyway... Submarine is a real film, and they're rare to find these days. Even better - it's funny! I've tried smoking a pipe and flipping coins...

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Window, summer 2

Saw a small lizard on my window ledge last night. It was around 5 cms, probably a common wall lizard. I've  seen lots of them before, usually bigger and usually out in nature, often in parks, not some lizard I could invite into my apartment for a beer.

There's a white cat, or two actually, I think, often walking across the roofs on the other side of the street where I live. It sometimes jumps onto some other roofs, something that always makes me a bit nervous. I don't want to be witness to it falling. Be careful, okay, cat?

The mystery of the pigeon babies. Where are they? Well, I saw one on the sidewalk today, looking a bit shabby. Probably fell out of the nest. Hope it will be able to fly soon, or it will be killed by some of the cats around here. Maybe even the white one, who just landed in a parachute, who knows.

And... washed my clothes at local laundromat / laverie, something that usually is a chore. But the 20 minutes it took for my clothes to dry in the spinner, I sat in a chair outside the entrance, pretending to read my paperback, but in reality looking at the women walking by and enjoying that it's summer.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Lord of The Flies

When I grew up in Norway in the 70s there was only one tv-channel, showing only one feature film per week, on Monday nights. I only now figured out that maybe there would be a list of the films shown on the internet somewhere and... of course there is! Lots of films I remember very well. Barefoot in The Park, Yellow Submarine, To Sir With Love, Alice's Restaurant, Zorba the Greek, The Purple Taxi, Taking Off, The Last Wave, Next Stop Greenwich Village, Flight of The Phoenix, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Avanti, Mr Roberts, Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, the French films Le Grand Blond Avec Une Chaussure Noire and Le Concierge and so on. Plus lots of films I don't remember. Probably they lasted too long and I had to go to bed. Some of these films I've re-watched later, some not.

One film I remember clearly is Lord of the Flies, especially the ending. Checking the list of shown films, I see it was shown 17,4,78, 34 years ago. I was 12 years old, around the same age of the boys in the film. The theme of the film went completely over my head, it was just an exciting story. I got the dvd recently and re-watched it for the first time. It's a bit awkward, the acting is so so, but it's still a powerful film. Together with other films it made a big impression on my young mind and probably contributed just as much to me becoming a cartoonist, wanting to tell stories, as whatever comics I read at the time

Window, summer

Thursday, June 21, 2012


It's the Day of Music in Montpellier, with live music all over town. I went out and did some drawings in my sketchbook, trying to do less buildings and more people this time. But it's difficult - they keep moving without my permission! The one of the woman in the wheelchair turned out okay.

Midnight in Paris

I was planning to see Calamari Union by Kaurismäki, only to discover that the dvd I bought in Oslo was empty. The same with Crime and Punishment. No discs! Damn you, Platekompaniet! So yes, that was a bit annoying... Oh well. I rather put on Midnight in Paris. 

People have told me it reminded them of my comic book, The Left Bank Gang, so I was curious to see it. There's even a scene of Zelda Fitzgerald talking about being bored. I should sue Woody Allen! I actually enjoyed the film, after giving up on Allen around Shadows and Fog, and disliking the couple of his films I've seen after that. Typically, he shows the romantic side of Paris, as he also did in Everyone Says I love You. There are no people crowded together on the Paris metro in a Woody Allen film. Woody Allen has probably never taken the metro in Paris in his life, he can afford cabs. It sometimes rains, that's as far as he goes. Raining in a romantic way, of course. I found it a bit unfortunate that he, in a conversation in the film, too obviously states the message of the story: the inherent lies of nostalgia. Thank you, Mr Allen, I think I got that on my own. And the quarrel between Owen Wilson and his girlfriend where they walk in and out of the shot is a scene we've already seen in a million Woody Allen films. Okay, maybe not a million. But it's a funny, appealing film, looking almost a bit too pretty.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Page 37

... of Lost Cat.

...and dvds bought in Montpellier

1. Tintin - Secret of the Unicorn by Steven Spielberg
2. Submarine by Richard Ayoade
3. Mean Streets by Martin Scorsese
4. Midnight in Paris by Woody Allen
5. Boy Meets Girl by Leos Carax

It was one of those 5 dvds for 30 euros deals at Virgin Megastore. Together with the ones I got in Paris and Oslo it really should be enough dvds for a while. First up: Tintin!

I think I had an open mind about seeing this film. I knew it would be different from the comics. Film's a different medium. It would be Spielberg's Tintin, not Hergé's Tintin. Spielberg has done some good films, right? But, no, I didn't like it at all. I almost turned it off after the first half hour. Okay, it's visually inventive, but it's just too noisy, with constant movements - a film for the videogame generation, and closer to Pirates of The Caribbean than the spirit of Tintin. I longed for a quiet moment with not much happening. Even Raiders of The Lost Ark had some of those. The silent film slapstick + Hitchcock suspense that you find in the Tintin albums is completely gone, it's all just a rush for the next action scene. And they screwed up the funniest scene from the album, at the pickpocket's apartment where Dupont and Dupond find all their wallets!

Ugh... I need to see a slow Kaurismäki film next.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Stuff waiting in the mail

...when I got back from Norway.

1. Already Dead
2. The Name of The World
3. Tree of Smoke, all by Denis Johnson
4. White Apples by Jonathan Carroll
5. Pete And Miriam by Rich Tommaso
6. Krazy And Ignatz, 1922-24 by George Herriman

I enjoyed Train Dreams by Denis Johnson, from the Stuff bought in Paris post. I'm on page 334 of Chronic City by Jonathan Lethem. I'm debating whether I should continue the book or give up. It's kind of slow. And aren't you supposed to start caring about the characters after 300 pages? Hasn't happened yet.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Dvds bought in Oslo

1. Le Havre
2. Leningrad Cowboys Meet Moses
3. Crime and Punishment
4. Hamlet Goes Business / Calamari Union, all by Aki Kaurismäki
5. Hiroshima Mon Amour, by Alain Resnais
6. The Killing of A Chinese Bookie, by John Cassavetes
7. Go And See, by Elem Klimov

Friday, June 8, 2012


... from my little exhibition in Oslo last year, and that I just now found hidden in a file somewhere (this photo, I mean).

Stuff bought in Paris

... on the way up to Oslo.

Used dvds:

1. They Were Expendable by John Ford
2. Run Silent, Run Deep by Robert Wise
3. Lord of The Flies by Peter Brook
4. Fearless by Peter Weir
5. A Face in The Crowd by Elia Kazan
6. The Cat o' Nine Tails by Dario Argento
7. Kingdom of Heaven, director's cut by Ridley Scott
8. Dances With Wolves, extended cut by Kevin Costner


1. Chronic City by Jonathan Lethem
2. Train Dreams by Denis Johnson

Thursday, June 7, 2012


I'm off to Norway, including two days in Oslo for the Oslo Comics Expo, for the publication of the Norwegian version of Athos in America.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Jesus' Son

I was curious about this film, based on Denis Johnson's short story collection. It follows some people in the 70s. Some drugs are involved. Starring, among others, Billy Crudup, Samantha Morton, Denis Leary and Jack Black, directed by Alison Mclean.

To base a film on shortstories is not the easiest thing to do. The whole point of the short story will often be hidden between the lines - it will come together in the reader's mind - and often be lost when told in images. Unfortunately, the director doesn't have much of a vision; the film has an annoyingly anonymous indie feel, as if made with some Sundance computer program. It lacks the precision of the short stories. Clinging to the text in a voiceover doesn't help. It should have been sadder, it should have been funnier. It should have been better, actually.