Took a break from the paper on candidate blog analysis in the '04 presidential race to watch Eddie Izzard: Unrepeatable. I'd seen snippets of some of his other shows, but never one in its entirety. I'm trying to watch all of them in chronological order, for no other reason than to see if there's a progression in his routine. Actually, I tend to try and watch most things in chronological order....
Izzard is a great comedian. What I liked and really appreciated was that his act was intelligent -- he touched on everything from pets to medieval monks to the royal family to laundry. (Though in Unrepeatable he wasn't famously dressed in women's clothes, there's a point midway through where he talks about being a transvestite.) The style was very stream-of-consciousness, and it worked. I didn't laugh until my sides ached at any point, but I laughed smaller appreciative chuckles consistently throughout the act, which is waaaay more than I can say about other shows by other comedians.
Then, to further procrastinate, I opted for a Netflix online movie: Bright Young Things. It was directed by Stephen Fry and had a fairly impressive cast --everyone from Dan Akroyd to Stockard Channing to Peter O'Toole to Sir John Mills. It's apparently based on a book from the 1930s, so I don't know if it is true to its source material or not (actually, some of it can't be, because it goes a few years into the War).
The movie started off as both a glamorized glimpse into and an indictment of the Paris Hilton set of the 1930s -- rich, young, mainly aristocratic, hedonists. The main character is a writer struggling to make enough money to be able to marry the woman he loves; there's a minor subplot about an elusive alcoholic major who has the money he needs. Then they all slowly start to unravel, and a few come to tragic ends. Then World War II starts. By the end, it's a bit ironic and weird: the writer fellow who doesn't have the money to get the life he wants just simply purchases it. As in, a wife and kids. In some ways it's no less crude than his girlfriend choosing to marry someone else who is richer. It was just a little odd.
The film itself if good, even if some characters (like Peter O'Toole) just disappear inexplicably. Great visuals, especially the elaborate party scenes. Also, the soundtrack is killer.
And now, back to political blogs.