Saturday, June 16, 2018

so many things

Along with my NEIPA, I picked up an American IPA from Birra y Paz, oh so long ago.  It was the name and the label that really convinced me, Las Uvas de la IPA, with a pack of odd representations of...stuff.  Anger at various stages, I suppose.
That shopping cart doesn't even have ammunition in it
Immediately aromatic, with a striking hoppy smell.  Pours nicely, with a heavy orangeish color and off-white head.  The scent has perhaps a touch of pine.  The flavor is sharply bitter, much heavier than anything I've had recently, but it feels like a good summer drink in spite of being a little thick.  The bitterness is refreshing and not undermined by any sweetness playing down the strength of the hops.  This is a fairly powerful beer, both in alcohol at 9%, and in feel with its robustness.  A little too strong flavored for a mealtime beer, unless the food itself is pretty light.  Quite nice by itself, I don't feel the need for snacks, although I do not think it would be the best idea to chug this one down on an empty stomach.

Supplier: Birra y Paz
Price: €3.95

It's German Film Fest time!  I've only seen two yet, so the other two will come with the Vallehermoso review next week.

Die Vierhändige/Cuantro manos/Four Hands is part of the horror collection they are showing this year.  Horror!  Huzzah!  It seems like something Germans should be able to do.  As this is a festival, sometimes people involved in making the film come to talk with the audience afterwards, and the director was here for this showing.  According to him, the German public is a bit finicky with its films, preferring the more intellectual offerings (uh, Fack ju Goethe, anyone?) and this type of dramatic horror isn’t so well represented.  But it does do well outside of Germany.  The story is about two sisters whose parents were murdered in their house when the girls were very young.  For some reason they still live there twenty years later.  The younger sister wants to join an orchestra as a pianist, while the older sister still seems to be heavily traumatized by witnessing the crime.  She is extremely nervous about her sister’s well-being and checks up on her constantly.  Then, they hear that their parents’ murderers are being let out of prison and the older sister kind of flips out.  She chases the younger one through a parking garage and they are both hit by a car driving through the aisles like it’s supposed to.  The younger sister wakes up in the hospital and is told that her sister was dead on arrival, which upsets her, but on hearing from the police that threatening letters had been sent to the murderers, she seems determined to get on with her life.  She starts seeing the doctor from the hospital who told her about her sister, but when they start kissing in his car she reacts violently and leaves.  When she arrives home, she now appears as the older sister and furiously tears the house apart looking for her discarded things.  The sisters switch consciousness several times before the younger sister asks for help.  She realizes the older sister has tracked down the murderers and is planning to do something to them, possibly kill them to avenge their parents.  They talk to each other by leaving messages on the old answering machine and the younger sister resorts to chaining herself to the bed.  It doesn’t work; she comes to in her car, driving down the highway, and screeches to a halt, narrowly avoiding an accident with another car.  When she stops the car, she hears yelling and pounding from the trunk.  The female murderer is inside.  The younger sister decides to scare the woman out of town to save her life and knocks her out with chloroform before tying her to a tree, getting the story of the botched robbery out of her, and telling her to leave if she wants to keep living.  Presumably, the woman leaves because when the older sister gets her turn and shows up at the woman’s workplace, they tell her she has disappeared.  The male partner is still around, though.  He’s going to get his.  However, the younger sister has started to research both the murders and the car accident.  She finds the psychiatric reports saying her older sister was too racked with guilt to get over her trauma, and sees a photo of herself lying on the ground, covered in blood at the scene of the car accident.  She appeals to the doctor (who her sister threatened to kill) and he brings her to the psych ward.  When he says she doesn’t look that crazy except for her tattoo, the younger sister realizes that she isn’t possessed by her older sister’s protective, vengeful ghost, she is possessing her sister’s body and still trying to live a normal life.  She runs home to lock herself up, and the murderer breaks in and finds her.  The doctor comes to see if she’s alright, gets beaten by the murderer, the now older sister escapes the chains and kills the murderer with a coat-rack to his back.  She prepares to cut her own throat while sitting on the plastic covered couch, but then she sees the answering machine with a message on it from her sister, a message that screams, “It’s my life!  I want my life!”  The older sister decides that she has an obligation to stay in the world, so her sister will have some way to keep living.  She does go to some kind of treatment and at her sister’s funeral seems to be much calmer.  But, when she gets home there’s a message - her sister playing a piano part, which she joins in on.  The director said the movie is meant to tell us that whatever trauma we experience will never go away, but our can live our lives well by accepting it.

Der Hauptmann/El capitán/The Captain turned out to be a true story.  A German soldier deserts in the final days of the Second World War and comes across a car with a captain's uniform inside.  There's nobody around, so he puts on the uniform and practices giving imperious orders, when he is surprised by another soldier who mistakes him for a real captain.  The "captain" takes this lost man under his command and they go around picking up other soldiers apparently separated from their units.  He tells people he's taking stock of the situation near the front under the direct orders of the Führer, and finally he ends up at a prison camp where he decides to execute all the deserters in spite of the protests of the camp director.  An English bombardment destroys the camp and kills most of the people who are left, so the "captain" takes what men he can gather and starts an express trial tour.  He blows into town, kills a few "traitors", and has himself a party.  Finally, he military police catch up to him and arrest him.  He is tried for his crimes, but the examiners say his actions weren't so strange given the circumstances, and in the end he is given a very light sentence.  He escapes anyway, and walks out into the woods, over a carpet of human skeletons, and disappears into the darkness among the trees.  I thought it might be a story with a sort of "Catch Me If You Can" atmosphere, where the fraudulent officer is trying to stay under the radar and not have people examine him too much, but no.  The guy was a psychopath.  He had no problems killing and ordering others to kill, so his desertion doesn't seem like the act of a man just tired of having to commit violence.  He didn't even seem to enjoy it very much, it was just a thing he had to do.  The movie ended with the actors roaming a modern city in their Nazi costumes, harassing people in the street while the credits rolled.  The director was here for this movie too, and he explained that he really wanted to make a film that busted a few legends and myths that Germans had about the end of the war and people's behavior at the time.  At least, I think that's what he said.  He didn't have his own mic and the interpreter's mic had really bad, fuzzy sound.

Halfway through!