You

A poem for you, Emy.

You are my hope
You are my happiness
You are the one who lit the stars
You are the angel that God sent me
to take away the pain
You are the one who heals my wounds
You are the one that turns withered grass into roses
You are the one

<3

Film Review: Hide and Seek

Horror, USA 2005When David Callaway‘s wife commits suicide, he and his daughter Emily moves from town. As a result of the trauma, Emily creates the imaginary friend Charlie, who by time grows to take over Emily’s life and become more and more dangerous…Really a cool and original film. Boring in some parts, and I don’t like the last few minutes. I like the story and the actors (Robert De Niro and Dakota Fanning as David and Emily), and the psycologic horror involved within it. The soundtrack could have been better.

 ******six stars

Keep everything from school

Please, please, please. Whenever an essay is returned from school, by God, don’t throw it away. You will regret it. Not only for the memories when you read them years later, but you could use them later. It only happened to me once, and that was a novella I wrote for school, that I really want to read… well, about all the time. But I know it can happen to any work you turn in.

If you have a blog or something similar, you can simply upload it there. As I do with both The Hopes Were High, and, for Swedish literature (poetry, novels, novellas etcetera), Nattamat. If you’re Swedish (about six percentages of my readers are), you should upload all school work to the webpage Uppsatslotto, which is an every month lottery giving you an extra ticket to it for every uploaded word.

Film Review: Ondskan

Drama, Sweden 2003, ”Evil””Ondskan” is a film based upon Jan Guillou’s bestselling novel with the same name, which itself is based upon Guillou’s childhood, and the main character Erik Ponti is according to Guillou himself. Throughout the film, the sountrack is most silence, but in some scenes, it is the echoed music from when Erik’s mother played the piano in the beginning of the film. Since it is the 1960’s, several characters, including Eric, listens to artists such as Elvis Presley, and this is also played in the background on LP players quite often. The film won one Gulbagge (a Swedish film prize) and was nominated for an Oscar as the best foreign film of the year.The film is about 16-year-old Erik Ponti, whose stepfather uses corporal punishment on him, and resulting in this Erik is violent at school. As he in the beginning of the film is found assaulting another student, he is expelled and to finish his last year of the obligatory school, he goes to Stjärnberg, a luxuary boarding school. He promises his mother to try this time, try not to fight and try to finish school, and at first he thinks it’ll work. But Stjärnberg uses a system where not the teachers, but the older students, keeps the order in the school. And the school has rules such as that the other students has no choice but to obey the older’s orders. And when you don’t obey them, when you swear, when you stick up… you are punished. Erik Ponti at first tries to go by their rules, but is by time forced to stick up more, and he ruffles up the whole system.I liked the film a lot, and I’ve watched it several times. I especially like the style of the film (barely any soundtrack, no clear colors etcetera), and some scenes and quotes are really great.

 *******seven stars

Dark Passion Play – full album review

On September 28th this year, Finnish symphonic power metal group Nightwish produced their sixth and latest studio album, featuring their brand new vocalist Anette Olzon, Dark Passion Play. An album which in my opinion is their greatest ever, even though some songs would have been much better with Tarja Turunen (Nightwish’s last vocalist from 1996 to 2005). Anette does her part really well, though, singing parts much better than Tarja ever would have. Though, one thing I miss on the songs is guitar. Ofcourse we have this fully acoustic song, The Islander, that features quite a lot guitar (all the time) but there are several songs that barely have any guitar at all, or at least real boring riffs, such as For the Heart I Once Had and Amaranth.

Okay, that’s enough talking. Over to the review.

1. The Poet and the Pendulum (13:53)

Clearly the best track on the album. Lovely lyrics throughout the song, truly lovely. ”The Poet and the Pendulum” (the name derives from a classic Edgar Allan Poe novella, ”The Pit and the Pendulum”) is the epic song that’s the centre of the whole album – for a long time the album was supposed to be called this instead of Dark Passion Play. The length ofcourse makes it stick out from the other songs, but exactly like even longer songs by Dream Theatre, it feels like rather about five minutes. It holds several chapters, just like another long Nightwish song, ”Beauty of the Beast” from their Century Child album. In this case, the chapters are:

  • White Lands of Empathica
  • Home
  • The Pacific
  • Dark Passion Play
  • Mother and Father

As noticed, one of the parts are called ”Dark Passion Play”, another sign for this song being the center of the album. I love the entire song, but the last half – especially ”Dark Passion Play” – is the best. ”Mother and Father” is probably the saddest piece of music that Tuomas Holopainen – keyboardist and songwriter – has written for a long time. ”White Lands of Empathica” and ”Home” truly are boring, but God, that chorus is mind-blowing.

2. Bye Bye Beautiful (4:16)

This song is really simple, and so is the chorus. Perhaps that’s why it got to be the third (and at the moment next, after ”Eva” on May 30 and ”Amaranth” on August 22) single of the album. I like the lyrics, they’re really progressive, and I like some lines very much, such as ”it’s not the tree that forsakes the flower, it’s the flower that forsakes the tree”. ”Bye Bye Beautiful” is written about Tarja Turunen, the last vocalist, who was kicked out of the band in an open letter in October 2005.

3. Amaranth (3:59)

The second single, after ”Eva”. Even though I like the intro and the verses, I hate the chorus. Sounds like anything but metal to me. Truly poor music video as well. I liked the song when it was released, though.

4. Cadence of Her Last Breath (4:17)

Beautiful music, beautiful lyrics, but really nothing special about it that catches me. Don’t know why. I like the heavy breathing throughout the song, though.

5. Master Passion Greed (6:04)

At first I hated it, but I like it more and more every time I listen to it. Like the choir voices singing ”Master passion greed” in the chorus, as well as the fact that Holopainen didn’t let Anette sing it; it is one thing doing a personal offence through a song like this (the song is about Tarja Turunen’s husband, Marcelo, who according to Holopainen was the one who forced them to drop Tarja), but it is another one to make someone who’s not involved sing it. I don´t like the intro, it’s too much alike the intro to both ”Whoever Brings the Night” and ”The Kinslayer”. It is nice to hear Nightwish trying something heavier and more progressive once in a while, such as this song, ”The Kinslayer” (from the Wishmaster album) and ”Slaying the Dreamer” (from Century Child).

6. Eva (4:26)

The first single. I wrote a quite long review on this song when it was released, go there instead.

7. Sahara (5:49)

As Holopainen said himself, such a cliche with a heavy metal band making a song about ancient Egypt. The lyrics are real boring, but the music is really good, especially the intro (before 1:16 in length). The choir’s real good as well.

8. Whoever Brings the Night (4:19)

One of my favorite tracks on the album, together with ”The Poet and the Pendulum” and ”7 Days to the Wolves”. I didn’t like it at all (just like ”Master Passion Greed”). Though, after my brother Tim told me that it was one of his favorites, I gave it another try. And I liked it. Just like ”Master Passion Greed”, it is very agressive, and I love Anette’s style of singing. I like the lyrics as well, but I think it’s a bit short with to much chorus and too few verses.

9. For the Heart I Once Had (3:58)

This track used to be one of my favorites of the album, but now I think the music is too simple, too boring, with not enough change in the verses. I love the lyrics, and I love the power in the first chorus, but compared with several other songs, it’s quite poor. But God, I’m close to crying when I hear that intro.

10. The Islander (5:08)

Dark Passion Play truly is an album on which Nightwish varies a lot. It has their most epic and longest song so far (”The Poet and the Pendulum”), they have the most agressive song (”Master Passion Greed”), they have a brand new singer for the first time in ten years, and they have this. An acoustic ballad about an old lonely lighthouse keeper with their bass player on second guitar. It’s really beautiful, and at last Marco Hietala (bass and male vocalist) can show off his singing skills in other ways then screaming, as he rather did earlier. This was as well shown on ”While Your Lips Are Still Red”, that’s featured on the ”Amaranth” single. I love it.

11. Last of the Wilds (5:42)

Nightwish haven’t done an instrumental song since ”Moondance” on their 1998 album Oceanborn, but here it is, ”Last of the Wilds”. And I really like it. It reminds a lot of ”Moondance” indeed, and is a very joyful melody that really cheers you up. It has real cool instruments as well, such as the banjo.

12. 7 Days to the Wolves (7:05)

This song is so awesome. Especially the last few minutes are probably the greatest minutes of the whole history of Nightwish (excepting ”The Poet and the Pendulum”, heh). Great lyrics as well, and I like the way Anette and Marco shares the singing, and the whispers that are mixed in. It sounds real cool.

13. Meadows of Heaven (7:10)

Even though it’s not one of my favorites, ”Meadows of Heaven” is great to finish the whole album (there is one more track, but it’s only a Japanese bonus track so it barely counts). It’s really beautiful, and got a perfect length to get you in a great mode. Good for relaxing. I hate the ending with the choir voices though. The last minute or so. HATE IT. Skip it from there every time I play it…

14. The Escapist (4:57)

As I heard someone else say, this is the song that’s most like the ”old Nightwish”, i.e. how Nightwish sounded before Tarja quit. That’s probably why it wasn’t decided to be on the album, but only as a Japanese bonus track. I really wish it was on the album, since it’s great. I love especially the chorus, even though it sounds a bit like pop (just like ”Amaranth”). I love the text as well, feels like it’s covering Nightwish’s whole discography. For example it begins with ”Who’s there knocking at my window? The Owl and the Dead Boy”, the Owl referring to the owl on the cover of Oceanborn and the Dead Boy referring to a character mentioned in several songs, such as ”Dead Boy’s Poem” (Wishmaster) and ”For the Heart I Once Had” (Dark Passion Play). The song is about Holopainen’s wish to escape from the dull reality, and face the adventorous fantasy world, exactly as ”Wanderlust” (from Wishmaster) is.

Film review: Freddy VS. Jason

Splatter horror, USA 2003You could expect such a mix of two film series (Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street) to be of quite poor quality, so I was truly surprised. It’s great. Special effects are acceptable (I’ve never cared too much about special effects what so ever), and acting is, especially by Peter Englund who plays Freddy Krueger, excellent. I’m glad it doesn’t have many splatter scenes – I hate horror movies that totally revolve around the scenes when someone chops another guy’s head off. I especially liked the scene where one of the teen girls falls asleep at the police station and has a dream where little girls tells her about Freddy and sings her the song (one, two, Freddy’s coming for you…).

 ******six stars

D'oh.

Do you need to be an alcoholic to understand such a problem, to understand an alcoholic? Do you have to have tried to commit suicide to understand depression? If so is – damn. A horror writer not going through troubles such as losing relatives or having drinking problems, well, that’s me. Sounds quite strange, I guess, but I think I do understand any way. I heard Stephen King based the drinking father in his novel The Shining on himself, even though he didn’t realise it himself for several years. Guess that means that this inspiration came from his drinking problem, and that he wouldn’t have written this great novel if he never had it. So I need to start drinking to get inspiration now…?

My ass I will.

Letter to Weed – a Work on John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

This is a project I did for English in school a month ago, reading John Steinbeck’s classic novel ”Of Mice and Men”. It is a fictive letter from George and Lennie’s new boss in Soledad to their old boss in Weed. My received grade was 17, in the Swedish system about VG+ / MVG (the Swedish grading system is IG – G – VG – MVG).

Harold Ford,
Ranch of Nice Fellas,
Soledad, California
7th July 1933

Carl Michael,
Raping Ranch,
Weed, California

Dear Mr. Michael.
My name is Harold Ford, and as the president of the Ranch of Nice Fellas in Soledad, California, to which you have sent two men earlier working for your ranch, Lennie Small and George Milton, I decided to carry out a letter to you immediately, to gain some information about the two of them.
I don’t really know if I should expect you to remember me from then, but we have met once, actually. In the fall of September back in ’28, our roads crossed on a visit I had to Weed. We didn’t have such a great contact, still I remembered your name as I saw it on the contact information the men brought. Your ranch is one of few things that I clearly remember from Weed, and especially the strong discipline charged upon your workers to create a splendid working enviroment, eye candy for any man that ought to see it. I would truly apperciate a future drop in from your behalf, if you would enjoy seeing the affect of an old man’s admiration towards your work.
Talking about my ranch ofcourse leads us to the major point of this letter. One night has passed since the arrival of my two new workers, claiming that their last employement were at Raping Ranch, Weed; your ranch. Still I cannot avoid suspection towards this. Ebery time I have them asked about the days back in Weed, George Milton (which obviously is the talking one of the two) avoids this, changing subject. He doesn’t seem too happy talking about it, and I can’t understand why. And I can’t understand why the smaller one of them keeps hanging along with the other. My first thought was that the bigger – Lennie Small – who, well, isn’t that bright, was used by the other, George, that only had him with him to keep his part of the money. Though, I only kept this thought in mind for minutes, till I realised that George Milton rather looked after his poor cousin. I understood that this was something rather hard to find; true family love. I may be wrong, but this was my interprention of the whole story.
Another thing that worries me is that their arrival appeared yesterday morning and not the night before. They were supposed to have made the morning work, and now that’s impossible. Do you have any recalling of them being late often? Because if they do that, I’m afraid that’s quite a serious problem to me. How I now will handle this, we’ll see when I get to that point.
I’ll be greatful for answers as soon as possible, thank you on forehand.

Yours sincerly,
Harold Ford

"Opening the Curtains" on YouTube

A video of me playing my song ”Opening the Curtains” on guitar has now been uploaded to Youtube (the tabs were uploaded to The Hopes Were High a few days ago).

The Beast Without an Inner Beauty

He is the Beast who has no inner beauty, the Beast who has a tiny layer of golden colour between his skin and flesh, that some finds and believe is a goldmine. But they are wrong, and inside the Beast they find yellowish flesh and broken bones. For a while they believe Beast has his own inner beauty, but as time passes, in horror they realise their mistake.

They leave Beast to bleed from the wounds they’ve opened, searching for gold, and they leave the Rose to die, to drop its last petal.