Saturday, 24 November 2007

Gone with the Wind

This is the title of a 1936 American novel by Margaret Mitchell set in the Old South during the American Civil War and Reconstruction. The novel won the Pulitzer Prize in 1937 and was adapted into an Academy Award-winning film of the same name in 1939. It the only novel by Margaret Mitchell's published during her lifetime.
Mitchell's work relates the story of a rebellious Georgia Southern belle named Scarlett O'Hara and her experiences with friends, family, lovers, and enemies before, during, and after the Civil War. Using Scarlett's life, Mitchell examined the effect of the War on the old order of the South, and the aftermath of the war on what was left of the southern planter class.
If you haven’t read the novel and you’re willing to, don’t read further (spoiler alert!).


It's the spring of 1861. Scarlett O’Hara, a pretty Southern belle, lives on Tara, a large plantation in Georgia. She concerns herself only with her numerous suitors and her desire to marry Ashley Wilkes. One day she hears that Ashley is engaged to Melanie Hamilton, his frail, plain cousin from Atlanta. At a barbecue at the Wilkes plantation the next day, Scarlett confesses her feelings to Ashley. He tells her that he does love her but that he is marrying Melanie because she is similar to him, whereas he and Scarlett are very different. Scarlett slaps Ashley and he leaves the room. Suddenly Scarlett realizes that she is not alone. Rhett Butler, a scandalous but dashing adventurer, has been watching the whole scene, and he compliments Scarlett on being unladylike.
The Civil War begins. Charles Hamilton, Melanie’s timid, dull brother, proposes to Scarlett. She spitefully agrees to marry him, hoping to hurt Ashley. Over the course of two months, Scarlett and Charles marry, Charles joins the army and dies of the measles, and Scarlett learns that she is pregnant. After Scarlett gives birth to a son, Wade, she becomes bored and unhappy. She makes a long trip to Atlanta to stay with Melanie and Melanie’s aunt, Pittypat. The busy city agrees with Scarlett’s temperament, and she begins to see a great deal of Rhett. Rhett infuriates Scarlett with his bluntness and mockery, but he also encourages her to flout the severely restrictive social requirements for mourning Southern widows. As the war progresses, food and clothing run scarce in Atlanta. Scarlett and Melanie fear for Ashley’s safety. After the bloody battle of Gettysburg, Ashley is captured and sent to prison, and the Yankee army begins bearing down on Atlanta. Scarlett desperately wants to return home to Tara, but she has promised Ashley she will stay with the pregnant Melanie, who could give birth at any time.
On the night the Yankees capture Atlanta and set it afire, Melanie gives birth to her son, Beau. Rhett helps Scarlett and Melanie escape the Yankees, escorting them through the burning streets of the city, but he abandons them outside Atlanta so he can join the Confederate Army. Scarlett drives the cart all night and day through a dangerous forest full of deserters and soldiers, at last reaching Tara. She arrives to find that her mother, Ellen, is dead; her father, Gerald, has lost his mind; and the Yankee army has looted the plantation, leaving no food or cotton. Scavenging for subsistence, a furious Scarlett vows never to go hungry again, and takes charge of rebuilding Tara.
At last the war ends, word comes that Ashley is free and on his way home, and a stream of returning soldiers begins pouring through Tara. One such soldier, a one-legged homeless Confederate named Will Benteen, stays on and helps Scarlett with the plantation. One day, Will brings terrible news: Jonas Wilkerson, a former employee at Tara and current government official, has raised the taxes on Tara, hoping to drive the O’Haras out so that he might buy the plantation. Distraught, Scarlett hurries to Atlanta to seduce Rhett Butler so that he will give her the three hundred dollars she needs for taxes. Rhett has emerged from the war a fabulously wealthy man, dripping with earnings from his blockade-running operation and from food speculation. However, Rhett is in a Yankee jail and cannot help Scarlett. Scarlett sees her sister’s beau, Frank Kennedy, who now owns a general store, and forges a plan. Determined to save Tara, she betrays her sister and marries Frank, pays the taxes on Tara, and devotes herself to making Frank’s business more profitable.
After Rhett blackmails his way out of prison, he lends Scarlett enough money to buy a sawmill. To the displeasure of Atlanta society, Scarlett becomes a shrewd businesswoman.
Gerald dies, and Scarlett returns to Tara for the funeral. There, she persuades Ashley and Melanie to move to Atlanta and accept a share in her lumber business. Shortly thereafter, Scarlett gives birth to Frank’s child, Ella Lorena.
A free black man and his white male companion attack Scarlett on her way home from the sawmill one day. That night, the Ku Klux Klan avenges the attack on Scarlett, and Frank ends up dead.
Rhett proposes to Scarlett and she quickly accepts. After a long, luxurious honeymoon in New Orleans, Scarlett and Rhett return to Atlanta, where Scarlett builds a garish mansion and socializes with wealthy Yankees. Scarlett becomes pregnant again and has another child, Bonnie Blue Butler. Rhett dotes on the girl and begins a successful campaign to win back the good graces of the prominent Atlanta citizens in order to keep Bonnie from being an outcast like Scarlett.
Scarlett and Rhett’s marriage begins happily, but Rhett becomes increasingly bitter and indifferent toward her, because even though Scarlett’s feelings for Ashley have diminished into a friendship, Ashley’s jealous sister, India, finds them in an embrace and spreads the rumor that they are having an affair. To Scarlett’s surprise, Melanie takes Scarlett’s side and refuses to believe the rumors.
After Bonnie is killed in a horse-riding accident, Rhett nearly loses his mind, and his marriage with Scarlett worsens. Not long after the funeral, Melanie has a miscarriage and falls very ill. Distraught, Scarlett hurries to see her. Melanie makes Scarlett promise to look after Ashley and Beau. Scarlett realizes that she loves and depends on Melanie and that Ashley has been only a fantasy for her. She concludes that she truly loves Rhett . After Melanie dies, Scarlett hurries to tell Rhett of her revelation. Rhett, however, says that he has lost his love for Scarlett, and he leaves her. Grief-stricken and alone, Scarlett makes up her mind to go back to Tara to recover her strength in the comforting arms of her childhood nurse and slave, Mammy, and to think of a way to win Rhett back.
She still believes that she has the charm to get any man she sets designs upon. The book ends with Scarlett's proclamation: "After all, tomorrow is another day!".


Alexandra Ripley wrote the novel Scarlett, in 1991, as the authorized sequel to Mitchell's novel.
A second sequel has been released this month. The story covers the same time period as Gone with the Wind and is told from Rhett Butler's perspective. Written by Donald McCaig, this novel is titled Rhett Butler's People.


Tim Burton's New Projects

Director Tim Burton has signed with the Walt Disney Company to helm two 3-D movies: a big-screen version of Lewis Carroll’s classic novel Alice in Wonderland and a remake of his 1984 short film Frankenweenie.

I want to remind you that Burton was awarded a Disney animation scholarship at the California Institute of the Arts after he finished high school. Burton also directed several short films for Disney, including the stop-motion Vincent and Frankenweenie for the studio. He last worked with Disney on 1994's Ed Wood.

Burton’s rendition of “Alice” will combine live-action with state-of-the-art performance capture and be released in Disney digital 3-D.

The project will be produced by former Disney and Revolution Studios chairman Joe Roth with Jennifer and Suzanne Todd and Richard Zanuck. Burton and Zanuck have a long history of working together as producer and filmmaker: Planet of the Apes, Big Fish, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the upcoming Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

Burton’s most recent project is, as I just said, Sweeney Todd, an adaptation of the Tony Award-winning musical of the same name by Stephen Sondheim. The film stars longtime collaborators Johnny Depp as the murderous barber, Helena Bonham Carter as his accomplice Mrs. Lovett, and Alan Rickman.

Depp and Bonham Carter did their own singing in the movie, scheduled for a December 21 release.
(Thanks to The Hollywood Reporter)


Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Jaktens Tid

"The Time of the Hunt" is what this title means. Time of hunting, of killing, of blood....This is all what the members of Finntroll want to bring to our minds with this album. Is not a new one, but definitely the album itself is considered by many fans as their best, featuring a mix of folk and Viking metal aspects, such as traditional joik singing. I don't really know why, but it's quite addictive.

They combine elements of extreme metal with Finnish polka, called humppa. Finntroll's lyrics are in Swedish, one of Finland's two national languages, because "Swedish just sounds damn trollish", according to the band's first vocalist, Katla (whose native language is Swedish). Finntroll means "Troll from Finland" or "a spotty troll" since the word for spot (acne) and a finnish person are the same in Swedish.

Finntroll was founded in 1997, by Teemu "Somnium" Raimoranta, guitarist of Impaled Nazarene, and Jan "Katla" Jämsen. Their first demo, Rivfader, was recorded about a year later, in 1998. After the demo recording, the other members of the band, Samu Ruotsalainen (from Barathrum, Shape of Despair and Rapture), Samuli Ponsimaa, Henri Sorvali (from Moonsorrow) and Sami Uusitalo joined the band.

The next step for Finntroll was this album,Jaktens Tid, which was released in 2001. This album managed to climb to rank 20 of the Finnish album charts, exceeding expectation of band and publisher alike. The following wave of popularity attracted the attention of Century Media, which began promoting Finntroll for the rest of the world. The following summer, the band had their first time playing on open air festivals in Finland and other countries.

The year after the release of the album Jaktens Tid proved to be a misfortune for Finntroll: some tours had to be cancelled, and in the aftermath of his problems, vocalist Jämsen had to retire from the band due to a viral-based tumor in his vocal cords which could not be removed surgically; he retired after the release of the album Visor om Slutet (English: Songs about the End).

Shortly before the release of Visor om Slutet, Raimoranta died by falling off a bridge in Helsinki after having consumed too much alcohol, according to the official story.

Finntroll didn't dissolve after losing one of their founding members, but decided to go on, touring for two weeks in Europe, supported by the group Katatonia. The guitarist Mikael Karlbom was hired as a replacement for Raimoranta.

In 2004, the band released an EP, Trollhammaren (English: The Troll Hammer), and an album called Nattfödd (English: Nightborn). Trollhammaren is one of the most asked songs by fans in concerts, hence one of the most populars.

On January 29th, 2006, Tapio Wilska, vocalist of the band since 2003, was fired from the band.

A new album, titled Ur Jordens Djup (English: From the Depths of the Earth), was rele
ased March, 2007. This fifth album put more emphasis on epic keyboard riffs with very loud but melodic guitar. The album is the first to feature vocalist Mathias Lillmåns. This and other factors appear to contribute to a darker, more trollish black metal feel.
You're welcome to talk about your favourite Finntroll album's, or some other kids of music if you prefer!


I'm still alive!

It's strange to be's been quite a long time without writing here and I've felt like if my "little child" was abandoned. Summer has passed without many incidents and I hope I'll be able to keep this blog alive for long :) just to give some clues, next post will be about WHY is this blog titled the way it is? so stay tuned ;)


Wednesday, 4 July 2007

Back to reality

Even if not 100%, I'm already back from Tuska. It's been one of the best holidays in my life, and maybe also the shortest :P After 5 days of travelling to and back from Finland and around Helsinki in those 3 days, when we had time to see lots of people, costumes, and great music. Ouch, I'm still trying to land back in reality. We didn't have the chance to see all the concerts we wanted to (really sad to have missed most of Mercenary , Naildown , or Fintroll's concerts, but also extremely happy for having enjoyed the ones I could see. This year's artist list has been superb and they all were awesome with the public. I feel like I have to mention and thank (even if they're not likely to red this)the Dragonforce members for being so kind with us and for taking pictures with all of us... and also to Hansi Kürsch, Blind Guardian singer, for being always so nice!!! See you in Tuska 2008!!(Pictures to come). Keep tuned!!!


Friday, 15 June 2007

Countdown has started!!!

Pain...That's the translation for the Finnish word "Tuska" in English...and its also the name for one of the best metal festivals in the Nordic countries.
The Tuska Open Air Metal Festival in of Helsinki, Finland, has been celebrated since 1998 and it has grown larger and better organized every year. In 2006, the festival was almost sold out.....For this year, the amount of artist and the level are also interesting, his year's edition will be extremely interesting, featuring bands like Blind Guardian, Children of Bodom, D'espairsRay, DragonForce, Emperor, Finntroll, Katatonia, Mercenary, Moonsorrow, or W.A.S.P.
The concerts schedule has already been announced and it promises us 3 days of great music and non stopping concerts....Keep tuned!


Friday, 8 June 2007

Suiciding Bunnies

A friend of mine just sent me an email with drawings of bunnies trying to commit suicide.
Personally, I thought it was hilarious, even if some workmates called me crazy :P Each cartoon shows one or more white rabbits in their creative attempts to end their lives using a variety of items. Revolving doors, a toaster, a cricket ball, a boomerang, a hand-grenade, the shining sun, a magnifying glass, lots of smoking cigarettes and bowling balls are all featured as suicidal tools. Those cartoons are taken from a book, The Book of Bunny Suicides: Little Fluffy Rabbits Who Just Don't Want To Live Any More (2003) is a collection of mostly one-image black comedy cartoons drawn by author Andy Riley.

There are many cultural references, like for example a drawing in which some bunnies commit suicide using Darth Vader's sword. Here you can see some of them, but there are more waiting for you!Keep tuned!^^