Friday, March 21, 2008

Blog? What blog?

I know, I know! I've been very lax at updating this blog, and I apologize! Much of my free time has been taken up by a very exciting (to me, anyway) personal project that I probably shouldn't really talk about yet, but hopefully I'll have something to say about it soon....



Anyway, while I'm here, though, I may as well post something, right? How about a recommendation? We just announced what's probably my favorite film that Criterion's put out yet this year, The Furies. (Well, either that or Blast of Silence.) It's been called a "noir western" and that's not a half bad description. Pure viewing pleasure, seriously. The actual cover is up on the Criterion site, but here's the cover for the original novel by Niven Busch that's being packaged with the DVD. I'm pretty happy with how this set is shaping up—it's another arts & craftsy project for me, combining photography with watercolor paintings. I can't really take credit for the awesome title treatment, though, that's straight from the film. ("The Furies" is the name of their ranch, and that type comes from the sign on the land.) I should be finishing up the rest of the design early next week...

9 comments:

Chris said...

hey what's up with the weird "Mishima" cover? is that really the finalized design? If so, what was the thinking behind it?

Anhedoniac said...

First of all, kudos on "The Furies". Great work, to be sure. Not only is it a perfect summary, it elevates the movie itself!

Secondly, this is probably not the place or time to bring it up, since it's likely you had very little to do with it, so I apologize in advance.
But I agree with Chris sentiment, regarding the upcoming"Mishima" release, that some sort of explanation, from whoever is responsible or can vouch for those responsible, would be tremendously apprecciated:
Lots of people have been very, er, put off by the cover Criterion settled for in "Mishima".
Mind you, It's not that it's "weird" (thanks again, Chris) that is off-putting -the Makavejev "W.R. Mysteries of the Organism" is an excellent cover, for example- , instead it's the tone, which is hardly representative of the movie itself, that has raised eyebrows all over the place!
Especially when compared to the excellence behind "Patriotism", of which the worst that can be said is that it may be a bit literal in its imagery of the rising sun but it fits the subject exactly right to the extent that I can hardly imagine another cover taking it's place.

Chris said...

I stand by my "weird" commment. Sure maybe the garish color scheme works in conjunction with Ishioka's design work in the film, and the four floating bisected Mishima heads can represent the many sides of such a complicated man. But the whole image has such a psychedelic concert poster meets Mac Photobooth thing going on...For a film that relies so much on its impeccable design (production/costume/music/edit) the cover looks like a Bright Eyes poster. That's weird to me. I wholeheartedly agree with anhedoniac: the tone is just off. For those of us familiar with Schrader's film I think we were expecting something a little more timeless, e.g. the "Patriotism" cover.

Jordan Gray said...

Can't wait for The Furies. Sounds amazing. As for the Mishima cover? I haven't seen the film so I can't speculate on whether it tonally fits, but I do actually dig the final cover. Maybe it's not as "timeless" as some the others, but it does have some real excitement and vitality pumped into it. Perhaps that does fit the subject.

anhedoniac said...

Yeah, Jordan, that's one of the most noticeable aspects of the complaints:
they seem to come only from those who HAVE seen the movie.
It's a great success with those who haven't.
If it gets people like you enticed enough to spend their hard-earned dough and buy it, well then, our complaints are null and void since that's what covers, ultimately, are for.
And I doubt anyone who has seen "Mishima" will boycott it based solely on the cover since it's considered a very nice addition to the Collection

Anonymous said...

woot! i'm excited for that comic you're working on! where is it going to be published? and you're working with a pinoy artist, is that right? :)

sleeplessplanet

Eric Skillman said...

sleeplessplanet—

No publisher yet, Jhomar and I are still shopping it around, but I'll definitely keep the blog up to date with any developments.

wasted blues said...

Can't wait to finally have this movie. And the cover is just beautiful :)

Anhedoniac said...

I just wanted to say that having seen the final, and complete, packaging for Mishima, I recant on my earlier misgivings. Its a beaut of a package.