September 9th, 2006


Trying to lessen my reliance on parentheses (and failing)

Lamictal, day 8: Reading's getting a little easier if I try really hard. As proof:

Do you ever find yourself wondering about really arcane, random things? Like, I was watching the Prestige trailer again. I'd just watched it streaming before, but I downloaded it this time so my mother could see it (I'm going to try to sell her on the new Bond trailer as well; she's still mad that they didn't get Clive Owen. You know, even though she can't remember his name half the time. He used to be "King Arthur," now he's "That Guy from Inside Man"), so I watched it again. And I find myself wondering... where did magicians in that period (the book is set in the late 1870s, I think?) actually perform? Well, I did a little digging, and I found out that they generally performed on the vaudeville circuit in the United States and in music halls/variety theaters in Britain. And then I started wondering... where do the performers live? It's not like a circus, where they're basically carrying their own accomodations with them. Some of them seemed to stay in one place, maybe performing at more than one theater, but probably staying in one city, but that seemed more London-based; American vaudeville (particularly from what I've seen in Gypsy, set some 60-70 years later) seems a lot more nomadic. Did ordinary traveling B- and C-list performers just live at the theater while they were there? In (cheap, I assume) hotels? Was it kind of a pain in the ass to find a place to stay every time you moved on to a new city (which is why I'm wondering if there was some kind of set accomodation)?

The obvious solution would be to read a biography of such a performer--Robert-Houdin turned up as an interesting possibility. Houdini is the obvious choice, of course, although he was more early twentieth-century. What I noticed was, once I'd gotten sucked into a daisy chain of Wikipedia articles, you see several classic magic tricks in the Prestige trailer: the bullet catch, the vanishing cage (you actually see the secret of how that works), the Aquarian Illusion (which I don't think actually existed until recently), a little sleight of hand in passing, and the big trick that's Real Magic Zomg looks like a dressed-up version of your basic teleportation.

(What? Two movies about magicians this year, and you thought I wasn't going to get sucked into the history of stage magic?)

Speaking of Bond a long, long time ago up there, if you liked the trailer: updated Casino Royale gallery. Also at the trailer link: a download of the Catch a Fire trailer I mentioned the other week.

(I'm going to stake my money on it right now: somewhere, somehow, someone will not like the Bond movie, and they will write a negative review, and it will be titled "Royale with Cheese.")

Still Life Takes Top Honor at Venice. More importantly (for our purposes), Helen Mirren and Ben Affleck take top acting awards. Start your Oscar betting... now.

Ledger on the Joker: I Wouldn't Have Thought of Me Either. Heh.

Rumor: JKR Says Book Seven "up to about 750 pages." Sweet fancy Moses. I'll remember to rent a handcart when I go buy the book.

First Glimpse of Kingsley Shacklebolt and More in New King's Cross Report.

Models Flunk BMI, Get Spain Fashion Boot. That's right, bitches. You gotta have something to work.

Jilted bride turns wedding into benefit. No, not for herself, either.

In other news, I just realized that Marie Antoinette and The Prestige come out on the same weekend in October, and I am feeling something like panic--moviegoer's panic? Maybe we could swing another double feature, but I don't know...

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