A typical night for a group of war veterans at the local VFW turns into an all-out battle for survival when a teenage girl runs into the bar with a bag of stolen drugs. Suddenly under attack from a gang of punk mutants looking to get back what’s theirs — at any cost — the vets use every weapon they can put together to protect the girl, and their VFW, in the biggest fight of their lives. (rottentomatoes)
timespace coordinates: isolated island in Brittany, France, 1760.
Portrait of a Lady on Fire (French: Portrait de la jeune fille en feu) is a 2019 French historical drama film written and directed by Céline Sciamma (water lilies), starring Noémie Merlant and Adèle Haenel. Set in France in the late 18th century, the film tells the story of a forbidden affair between an aristocrat and a painter commissioned to paint her portrait. (wiki)
Frank, an opportunistic insurance lawyer, thinks he’s in for the time of his life when he goes out on the town to celebrate an upcoming promotion with his co-worker, Jeff. But their night takes a turn for the bizarre when Frank is dosed with a hallucinogen that completely alters his perception of the world, taking him on a psychedelic quest through board meetings, nightclubs, shootouts, and alternate dimensions. As Frank ping-pongs between reality and fantasy, he finds himself on a mission to find a missing girl, himself – and his wallet. (imdb)
For All Tomorrow’s Parties. 全为明日派对。
timespace coordinates: The Waste Tide depicts a dystopian China in the post-2020 era. (2040’s -2050’s) In the Guiyu island, the large electronic recycle industries are in full control of local lineage associations. The laborers who undertake dangerous work for the profit of the Chinese and foreign businessmen who employ them are depicted not as humans, but cyborgs whose bodies and minds have been altered permanently through bio-engineering.
The Waste Tide is a science fiction novel by the Chinese writer Chen Qiufan.
The story takes place in the imaginary ”Silicon Isle”. The Chinese word ”硅屿” for Silicon Isle shares a similar pronunciation with Guiyu (Chinese: 贵屿) in Mandarin. In the real world, Guiyu is a town in the Shantou prefecture of Guangdong province in China. And it is Shantou where Chen Qiufan was born and grew up before he entered Peking University. Situated on the South China Sea coast, Guiyu got famous in the global environmentalist community for its reception of E-waste. The town held the record for being the largest E-waste site up to 2013. Though some residents got rich by electronic recycling, pollution became serious in the town. Talking about the background of writing the novel, Chen said: ”Choosing my hometown as background to write the story, is related to my thinking of China. To depict the pain of changing China, is just because I desire for she getting better gradually.’ (wiki)
“Code 8 is an electrifying film featuring ordinary people with powers in a tough world. It’s a gritty and realistic take that’s a nice change of pace in the superhero genre.” John Nguyen / Nerd Reactor
timespace coordinates: 1969 Los Angeles
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is a 2019 comedy-drama film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. It features a large ensemble cast led by Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Emile Hirsch, Margaret Qualley, Timothy Olyphant, Austin Butler, Dakota Fanning, Bruce Dern, and Al Pacino. The film follows an actor and his stunt double, as they navigate the changing film industry, and features “multiple storylines in a modern fairy tale tribute to the final moments of Hollywood’s golden age” (wiki)
Based on his pioneering work in the recent book High Weirdness: Drugs, Esoterica, and Visionary Experience in the Seventies, author and podcaster Erik Davis will explore the phenomenon of occult revivals, comparing and contrasting some of the factors that made the early 1970s and the late 2010s hotbeds of occultism, witchcraft, and visionary experience. Featuring films by visual artists Dustin Wong and Amanda Siegel.
For Litquake 2019, Erik Davis spoke with RU Sirius about the politics of high weirdness, then and now.
High Weirdness By Mail by Ivan Stang
This hysterical hobbyist’s guide belongs in every hip library. Coot cat Reverend Ivan Stang, high holy of the Church of the SubGenius, has compiled a bestiary of American creeps and crazies so that you can write to them and receive mail that is weird, horrible, wonderfully absurd, or a combination of all three.