Tag Archives: review

Samsung Galaxy S Test Shots

Stilgherrian kindly gives me a new Android smartphone, Samsung Galaxy S, he got it from the launch to play with since he has already got Telstra HTC Desire. I have been using Nokia N96 for around 18 months. That is amount of time that techno gadgets double their performance in the market. It is very hard for me to convert myself completely to an iPhone or Android even though they have faster processors, cooler appearance, and most of all, much better user interface. The camera features which are more important to me do not convince me.

The image on the left is taking from Samsung whereas the right one is from Nokia. They both are set on the highest resolution and in normal setting. Nokia’s flash is turn off because there is no flash on this Samsung. The outcome look pretty much the same in low light environment for 5-megapixel cameras. However, Samsung produces images that almost double the file size. In this case, they are 1.5 megabyte and 807 kilobyte from Samsung and Nokia, respectively.

Have closer look and you will see how both camera cope in low lighting in a pub. Samsung has a greater aperture and less colour noise. On the other hand, Nokia has more depth of details, sharpness and contrast. It is not just Carl Zeiss lens on Nokia but also the quality of the sensor chip and the jpg compression.

By all means, I am still the process of testing this new toy. Having two smartphones in my pockets is a bit of a wanker for me but it is going to happen to me. The Android’s wide screen and its faster machine is very good for reading but probably not for an artworks, especially spontaneous ones. The question is more about workflow and connectivity. But before we get to that, I might explore more video.

Joy Division Documentary

Another burst of talented flame.

Love Will Tear Ua Apart

I felt offended when someone gave his opinion that Joy Division’s Love Will Tear Us Apart was a crap song. It shaped the rock music in the early 80’s which evolved from the raging Punk Rock. You can still hear its echo in the music today. Although I am a fan of New Order, I hardly know Joy Division apart from their most popular piece of music and the suicide of the lead singer, Ian Curtis. Joy Division Documentary has given me insights about them.

The Director, Grant Gee stylises the film with old clips and photographs creating the right mood for the group. The movie pivots on Ian Curtis, straightforward from forming the band to his death. People involved in the band, in the exception of the band’s families, tell us about their pathway rock stardom. Not so different from other super group, it takes talents, good timing and lucks. The major drawback is Ian’s illness and depression and on one knows how to deal with it.

It seems like Ian is just another troubled artist driven by success to end of his life. However, he is a good example of a mental disorder person is unable to connect to the world. His lyrics shows how has been lost on his own and no matter how deeply his massages strikes the audience, he would not get the sympathy back.

Cinema 16 British

16 doses of shorts from UK masters.

Cinema 16

It seems unreal that someone put my favourite filmmakers on the same disc: Ridley Scott, Peter Greenaway, Mike Leigh and even Martin Parr, who are more recognised as a documentary photographer. It is the compilation of early works that gave them the launch pads to their big career. You can find that shorts are likely be more freely creative, sometime more indulgent than feature length films. But that craft of producing a long movie is another complex story. And this proves how these directors still keep the their own story telling style.

The usual themes are about coming of age which is fair enough that artists’ first picks are close to themselves. Anyhow, growing up in the UK is just a tad out of my cultural references. They are just too bleak for my liking. The piece I like the most is Telling Lies by Simon Ellis with its humour and simple graphics. His first feature debut will be released soon. Watch out for this guy.

There are more in this Cinema 16 series: European, American, European (US Edition) and World which is due in early 2008. Can’t wait to see more.

Image Makers, Image Takers

Image Makers Image Takers

Image Makers Image Takers by Anne-Celine Jaeger is basically a collection of insightful interviews of living legends in photography business. That includes the big names like Martin Parr, David LaChapelle and rising stars such as Alec Soth. And the list goes on.

But what I like the most in this book is the section she involves a number of major curator and photo editors of our time, for instance, Camilla Brown from the Photographers’ Gallery, Kathy Ryan from New York Times and Gerhard Steidl from, of course, Steidl.

Although this second part of the book is smaller than photographers’ dialogues, if gives another spectrum of this huge medium. The great thing is to hear from people who get to see photographs as a profession in depth. I want more of them.

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Let’s get naked. We are human after all.

Lady Chatterley's Lover

 

With generosity from Dymocks, Stilgherrian and I have a chance to preview the French version of Lady Chatterley’s Lover which is released in Australian cinemas in October. It swept this year 5 César Awards including Best Picture and Best Actress.

A young, intelligent woman, Constance (Marina Hands) gets married with a wealthy, upper-class, half-paralysed man, Clifford Chatterley (Hippolyte Girardot). The unhappy marriage turns her to have an affair with his gamekeeper, Mr Parkin (Jean-Louis Coullo’ch). The original novel by D. H. Lawrence was a taboo itself with sex scenes between an aristocrat lady and a working class man. It was banned in many country including Australia.

There is nothing new with the plot of a married woman having an affair in the world of cinemas. They all have their excuses to cross the line. Ask Fracesca’s The Bridges of Medison County, Ada’s The Piano, Ju Dou and many main characters that has their quests beyond a married life. It is a kind of monogamous culture’s fantasy and a universal theme that writers always explore the relationship of a woman with her world, especially, before the sexual revolution and women’s lib movement.

Watching the relationship growing between Constance and Parkin is such a pleasure. They start off with sexual tension and develop into far beyond what she has with her husband—four-letter word, love. They strip their feelings to each other as well as their cloths each time they meet until they part.

Marina Hands beautifully portray Lady Chatterley as such a complex character. She combines naivety and intelligence in a perfect spot. She shines from when she sees herself naked in a mirror. The first sex encounter with Parkin, those eyes tell it all. The final sex scene she runs naked in the rains into the woods for him to catch her and end with floral decoration on her body.

This low-budget French adaptation is directed by Pascale Ferran. She interprets the story to contemporary stand, not just a standard costume drama, less of social context, more of character in depth.

It was limited released in French cinema as opposed to high-financed movies both local and from Hollywood studios. Three hours seem not too long at all giving that it delivers the sensuality in every minute of it.