Monday, January 9, 2012

Inspired by The Spook Who Sat By the Door

Tunage while you read:
A Sunday or two ago, i was hanging with ma belle fille De La, a personal friend of Slavoj Zizek. They had just met at a cafe and observed how aesthetics have replaced meaning in political movements today. And they are dead on. Politics seem to be a matter of fashion or Facebook status, as much as actual intellect and spirit. There is a running commentary of what is "cool" in human relations and we opt in and out as suits our mood and season. And politics have become a matter of consumption (cue the Situationist freak out). Boom.

Freeman and the gang posit a politic that is much harder---the climax reveals an ultimate act of conviction. How brave are we? What do we sacrifice? Either to right a societal injustice, or simply step in and fight when another human is hurting? What do we do in the decisive moment?

Serious heavy before the consumption portion of the blog, no?

Simultaneously, the Black Panthers and Jean Genet had argued for a theatricality in protest. Creating a visual spectacle to invert hegemonic understandings ala Situationists, and draw attention to the spectacle, to the hyper-reality that is a racist society. The look, the rhetoric, the protest of style was a strategy to awaken society. Similarly, the film switches out looks between the freedom fighter, feds and bourgeoise noting that the threads we sport are our social markers---and how we roll visually in public is a silent articulation of what we feel about gender, sex, class, aesthetics, child labor, fair trade, design, personal necessity and access, imagination and humor...

So where do, or can these philosophies meet? Let's try, honoring more African American designers and the spirit of the film, and carry protest in our hearts, minds and pants. Cross pollinate a little substance and style? Zizek holding hands with Genet and De La being hoisted on the shoulders of the Panthers---the stuff of sweet dreams and sweeter looks...

First, we have Freeman set the scene.
And Dahomey Queen takes over--nobody's fool but so beautiful no matter the scene.
Brainy beauty to crunch the numbers and kick off any great guerilla army...
Only good things start at the pool table. Scratch that, only great things...
Spy supplies...
...And sacred inner circle threads

Those of you who know the Matinee manager in the flesh need no explanation...
(via Audio Cubes, awesome Japanese audio site)
Rocking this film and your Mondays in style and general badassery.
What's up with all these mad masculine cuffs in 1973?

Identify Electrical Wire Color Code
(umm, not only did i always want to know this, but as a mini-Mack, i used to collect colored wire from construction was a special youth, to be sure)
Freeman's swagger quiets any rainstorm.
Everyday ingredients for revolution.
Taking the state training and turning it inside out.
Next stop in cool political cinema?
The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975 directed by Goran Hugo Olsson.
If the Stokely Carmichael speeches
with Talib Kweli's commentary don't get you excited?
You are dead inside.