Quick Post: Obligatory thinky think about #Tropfest (#My2Cents)

Don’t watch the film.  It stinks.

It might surprise everybody to know that I’m not a Tropfest-hater.  I quite enjoy it.  Every year, there are a few films which nail the short film format and make something enjoyable.

Unfortunately, Tropfest has often had more than its fair share of turds.  Sometimes, the turds are so turduriffic that it’s difficult to understand how the judges shortlisted the film.  Every so often, once every few years, one of these stinky poo turd films manage to win.

This is what happened this year with a film called ‘Bamboozled’.  A man is standing at a bus stop when he’s approached by a man claiming to be his exgirlfriend.  They go out to catch up on life since the ex transitioned to a man, sparks reflame between them as they get drunk, and our protagonist wakes up with morning after regret.  Just as this turns into a ‘Bap bow. You slept with a tranny’ joke, a camera crew bursts into the room to reveal that our protagonist is on a Candid Camera program and the guy he just slept with isn’t his ex-girlfriend, but just a guy.

The film is morally repugnant.

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Sun is cold and rain is hard… The neglected world of music criticism #arts

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The terrifying image left was the still image advertisement for the Listen Out festival.  There has been a wave of cancellations and downsizing in the music festival world — perhaps not unreasonably given the ridiculous rate of growth we’d seen over the past decade.  Parklife was perhaps the largest festival for dance music in Australia but, in response to the realisation that we’d hit Peak Music Festival, it refashioned itself as the artistic, smaller, and ‘more intelligent’ Listen Out.

It was so artistic, small, and more intelligent that it even advertised itself in French.  French ballerinas.  Creepy, soul-eating, nightmare fuel, electro-tech French ballerinas.

It was so artistic, small, and more intelligent that police were able to seize $10k in drugs.

What is surprising is that the latter story continues to be the dominant lens through which most of the population interprets music festivals.  It’s a fun time in the blistering heat listening to a variety of different artists while being fenced in with Australia’s drug culture.

In other words, there seems to be tacit agreement that music festivals are not really art forms worth critiquing in any meaningful or intelligent sense.  There’s no discussion about their composition or construction.  There’s no analysis of the interaction between the shifting, nomadic audience, the transient performers, and the physical location of the entire ordeal.  There’s no interpretation of that which is being interpreted.

Which is weird.

Continue reading “Sun is cold and rain is hard… The neglected world of music criticism #arts”