Story To… on hold

logo-story-toDear Story To… Friends and Contributors,

We know we haven’t been in contact for quite some time and we do apologise but unfortunately it has been necessary for us to put Story To… on hold.

Beth and Chris have been tied up working on another project, Drone Magazine. Kate has been busy moving countries over the last few months and now resides in Taipei, Taiwan.

We are all currently in discussion about the fate of Story To… and will get back to you as soon as we can with further information. Thank you for your patience. We’ll be in touch again very soon.

The Story To… Team x

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On screen

Resident film buff, Gerard Elson explores some of the latest flicks to hit the screen…

After reinvigorating a blockbuster franchise in sore need of a shake and a stir in 2006’s Casino Royale, Daniel Craig slips the Rolex back on and refastens his bow-tie for the latest 007 adventure, Quantum of Solace. Quantum finds Ian Fleming’s globetrotting secret agent as we’ve never seen him before – itching for vengeance and nursing a freshly cracked heart. First-time Bond helmer Marc Forster, with his track record of diverse and impressive mid-budget character dramas (Monsters Ball, Finding Neverland), proves the perfect filmmaker to navigate the iconic superspy through is his darkest and most personal vendetta yet, as well as showing himself a deft hand with the action, Quantum serving up some of the most imaginative setpieces of the year. It’s satisfying to find Bond so resolutely single-minded (the signature martinis here serve as a passport to woe-avoidance), and Quantum of Solace rightly builds its churning maelstrom of mood about Craig’s steely-eyed, tight-lipped central turn – only Sean Connery has previously inhabited the role as expertly.

Tasmania’s criminal past is exploited to gruesome effect in Dying Breed, feature debutant Jody Dwyer’s undercooked Aussie cannibalism schlocker. Pitting a quartet of city kids in search of the now-fabled Tasmanian Tiger (Saw’s Leigh Whannell and Wolf Creek’s Nathan Phillips among them) against the inbred descendents of real-life colonial man-eater Alexander “The Pieman” Pearce, Dying Breed frontloads its narrative with some solid cultivation of atmosphere, only to undo any good work by racing to a fizzling wrap-up well before its billie has boiled. It’s a shame for those with an appetite for homegrown genre fare, as the film boasts a smattering of shocks, and that cheeky revisionist set-up itself is a killer.

New York City, summer, 1994. A sweltering heat wave has lethargised the streets set to be cleaned up by new Mayor, Rudolph Giuliani, and teenage pot pusher Luke Shapiro (Josh Peck), lonely, and on the brink of high school graduation, is trading green for regular sessions with therapist (not to mention questionable role model), Dr. Squires (Ben Kingsley). As coming of age tales go, The Wackness offers a fresh spin on a well-spun genre, pulsing with a palpable authenticity of an era that’s yet to be much reflected upon in movies – few other retro-gazing character pieces have been as modestly such. With its lingo-heavy screenplay (“I got mad love for you, shorty. That’s on the real.”) and white b-boy lead, this could have been more agonizing than every highschool bus-trip with the class posse of Tupac-reciting douchebags combined, but writer/director Jonathan Levine takes his characters in some unexpected directions. Add to that that The Wackness is worth it for Kingsley’s perfectly-pitched performance alone; of its cast (Juno’s It-Girl-to-be Olivia Thirlby and Mary Kate Olsen included – yes, you read that right), only an aloof Famke Janssen is given short shrift.

Playing like Ghosts… of the Civil Dead if realised with a gallows poetry to rival the fertile lyricism of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Hunger, the full-length directorial debut from video artist and sculptor Steve McQueen, is a near-unrivalled forerunner for film of the year. Providing not only a detail of the final weeks in the life of Irish Republican hunger striker Bobby Sands (Michael Fassbender, whose spectral frame beggars belief), but also an even-handed mosaic of the day-to-day in The Maze prison that played home to a number of IRA inmates, McQueen’s harrowing film is narrative cinema as pure art, his frames making mini masterpieces of even the no-wash protestors’ gag-inducing, shit-smeared walls. At the centre of Hunger is one of the classic scenes of 2008: a 23-minute ideological tête-à-tête between a pre-starvation Sands and his Catholic priest (Liam Cunningham), 17½ crackling minutes of which unfold in a single, unfaltering take. Its unflinching commitment to brutality and squalor can make for unsettling viewing, but there’s a graceful humanity at its plaintive core that makes Hunger a film of rare resonance and beauty.

Keep up to date with all things film-related at Gerard’s fantastic blog, Celluloid Tongue.


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A little bird told us…

A Bird in the Hand, a great new zine distro based in Sydney, has given Pod People a wonderful review. It helps to confirm what a great job everyone has done in putting this issue together – our designer Chris and our writers, illustrators and photographers. Thanks guys!

You can read the review here.

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Zine Review: emma stronach’s ‘book art’

book-artWe’ve asked 3000 BOOKS blogger and Story To… contributor Estelle Tang to join the team as our new zine reviewer. Here’s what she thought about Book Art:

There’s something about the unsullied propriety of a book that makes me feel both at ease and on edge. Clearly, effort and care go into the creation of a book in truckloads. But the more difficult or deified the contents, the more I wonder what it would be like to tear it up and shake it around. Emma Stronach’s Book Art zine is a gorgeous reminder of this feeling. Emma has taken the pages of her old music textbook and ripped them up, creating sixteen pages of collage and catastrophe that are sometimes delicate and sometimes irreverent. In this way, a book that used to convey information in one way has been transformed with browns, blues, greens, shellac, pen and glue into something totally different and delightful. Book Art comes in two sizes – A6 ($5) and A5 ($10). I have the little version, but the larger version is printed on cardstock and can be taken apart as individual artworks. Book Art is available here.

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Pod People has arrived: stories to travel with

Jordi Kerr

Jordi Kerr

Media release dated: Monday 17 November 2008

The second installment of popular commuter zine Story To… has arrived and is centered on the theme Pod People. This issue has more pages, allowing a more ambitious grouping of literary and design talent.

Designed by Christopher Gray, Pod People has a selection of words and images by young creators from all over Australia including: Crystal Andrews, James C Spinks, Simon Smithson, Estelle Tang, Kathryn Ledson, Angela Meyer, Sean Greenhill, Sudeep Lingamneni, Jordi Kerr, Kellyanne Gentle and Richard Ibrahim.

“The theme, Pod People, was a reaction to the fact that so many people who travel on public transport bury themselves in their music. We wanted to show them the train station life they are oblivious to,” says Kate Nicholson, co-creator and editor.

“We are happy we chose an open call for submissions for this issue and lucky that we got such a large number of quality artwork emailed in to us. This has made for a very interesting collection of short fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry, illustration and photography,” says Beth Keating, co-creator and editor.

Story To… was founded in July this year and is now onto its second issue. It aims to give Melbourne’s public transport travellers an intelligent and free literary alternative whilst providing publishing opportunities to emerging artists.

Story To… Issue Two: Pod People is available free from selected zine distros or as a free download from this blog.

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Story To… is celebrating

prudenceThe Story To… team are having a few drinks to celebrate the release of Pod People and we’d love for you to join us.

When: Wednesday 19 November, 6.30 pm onwards
Where: Prudence, 368 Victoria Street, North Melbourne

 

Pod People is officially released on Monday 17 November and will be available free as a downloadable PDF from this site on that day. For everyone who has been promised a printed copy, keep an eye on your mailbox over the next few weeks.

You can help spread the word about Story To… We’ve created some flyers which you can download here, then print off and hand them out to everyone you know, or leave them on the train, or at your local drinking hole…

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UK catches on to our awesome-ness

Just a quick one to say that an article on Pod People has been published in UK online journal, Fallyrag. Thanks guys! Check it out here. And make sure you have a look at the other articles too.

zinead

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