Hello, world. I’m MacDara Conroy, and this is my blog.


Date: October 2020

Film review — The Evil

‘Geothermal activity as a sign of Satan’s realm breaking through’ is quite the conceit; shame this trumped-up haunted-mansion yarn can’t cash that cheque. Another disappointment from the vaguely recalled scary video rental shelves of my youth, so… Hell of a place they picked to set up a drug rehab centre, though. See what I did there? More…

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Bought a record on Discogs this afternoon. This is where it starts, people #tweet

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Film review — Society

The aesthetic epitomises the ’80s — from the fashions to the OTT effects work — but the theme is evergreen… depressingly so. More…

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Film review — Antrum

It’s the ‘Cigarette Burns’ episode of Masters of Horror except this time we get to see the movie! And it’s… OK. The film grain and wardrobe set the right tone for a supposedly unearthed filmic relic from the late ’70s. But the masks slips as it progresses, with the postmodern ‘subliminal’ edits, the lazy ‘vaguely Eastern Europeans are sinister’ trope and a bleak finale that echoes Lynch or Cronenberg or Von Trier more than Fulci and that ilk. If it wasn’t trying so hard to impress and disorient aesthetically, the strength of its more subtle themes — like the inscrutability of childhood grief — might be easier to discern. More…

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Catching up on last week’s AEW Dark and there’s a jobber whose first and last names are different chess pieces #tweet

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Irréversible in standard chronological order? That would make it a completely different film, and not a better one in my book #tweet

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“Sinn Féin says the sky is blue, but who pays for the sky??” — Leo, probably #tweet

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It’s too much for a tweet, but this thing about literally policing the ’non-essential’ goods in shops: our awful govt is trying to turn public sentiment against any form of lockdown, right? #tweet

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Anyone else having issues with the SuperDuper! scheduler in Catalina? It seems to just… not work, randomly, for me #tweet

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Just back home from getting our flu shots; it didn’t seem like there was a queue or anything… #tweet

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I was tuned out of the news this evening and… I can’t with this government #tweet

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Anyone know if the Rhino vinyl reissue of Devo’s Duty Now for the Future out next week is being released this side of the pond? It’s not showing up at my usual haunts #tweet

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The temperature says 12C but it’s cold enough out there for putting on my woolly hat for the first time since last winter #tweet

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FFS RTÉ, when you say ‘most shops expected to close’ you should probably specify that you don’t mean supermarkets, the shelves might be bare by lunchtime! #tweet

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Film review — Scream, Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street

The rare retro horror documentary that’s nothing of the sort: it’s instead an affecting character study of a man whose burgeoning career in the movies was cut short by gay panic. It’s unflinching about the grind of the convention circuit, and the struggle for acceptance even this far into the 21st century. But it’s also inspiring and life-affirming: despite being thrown under the bus by the ignorant, and coming close to death with Aids, Mark Patton is still here — and hopefully more alive than ever. More…

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Film review — Dead Kids

Not quite weird or offbeat enough to work as the knowing homage it’s intended to be. But it’s got some memorably strange moments, and it serves as a distant cousin to the same year’s Dead & Buried in their shared sense of a small town gone awry under the influence of sinister forces. More…

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I’ve got the whole weekend to draft my letter to the council about the traffic light that wouldn’t switch until I literally took my bicycle off the road #tweet

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I’ve really come around on Taz from his commentary on Dark. I literally LOLed at his “Skateboard Timmy” line #tweet

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My payday treat comprises the first two Talking Heads LPs on coloured vinyl. I am Fifty Quid Man now #tweet

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My shoes were on sale again online so I bought a pair and they arrived today. I don’t even need them yet, it’s just how I roll #tweet

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This evening’s listening sorted: my blue vinyl copy (1 of 75!) of The Flying Luttenbachers’ Incarceration by Abstraction just arrived #tweet

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Bee’s identified my problem with GBBO: it used to be about skill, but now they don’t give them enough time to cool their bakes so it’s about which looks least worst. It’s so negative and it sucks #tweet

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Great thread on the good stuff at Lidl. Sometimes their fresh veg can be a bit ropey but everything else? 👌🏼 > @ProperFood_ie #tweet

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Just found out our next-door neighbour died yesterday. I hadn’t seen him in a while, and it’s even longer since we spoke #tweet

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One quote sticks out: “…private sector rent arrears in England resulting from the pandemic could total as much as £437m.” Is that all? In Ireland it must be a fraction of that, a drop in the bucket of a national budget, a sum the State could easily bear > theguardian.com #tweet

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Film review — The Mourning Forest

The shame of living. That’s the prevailing thought I’m left with from Naomi Kawase’s The Mourning Forest. It’s a slow, slow, neorealist meditation on grief, centred on a young woman working in a nursing home (and who we shortly learn has lost a child) and an elderly widower with signs of dementia and jumbled-up memories of his late wife. The two make an unlikely connection before a spur-of-the-moment road trip becomes a trek through the woods as the man struggles to find something he’s lost, literally and figuratively. For all its glacial pacing in its first third, the film blooms when the duo disappear among the trees, with allusions to the joys and pains of motherhood, the meaning of what it is to be alive — and the hurt we bear when we outlive those who claim our hearts. More…

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Training myself to wake up early for work after a couple of years of later hours has had unintended consequences for my weekends #tweet

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Well, Saturday afternoons are decidedly unsafe for shopping since people are giving even less of a shit about social distancing > @MacDara #tweet

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The Horse Lords slot repeats in a little over two hours from now. And if you tune in 30 mins before you’ll catch MC Yallah’s set > @MacDara #tweet

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First week in the new job was good! I’ve never done so many video calls in my life #tweet

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Setting a calendar reminder to catch Horse Lords on the Tusk 2020 stream tonight #tweet

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Look who I found on Apple Maps last night. #image

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The only YouTube ad I will abide is that IKEA one with the Roots Manuva song #tweet

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Feeling much better this morning. Turns out going to bed at 6pm yesterday really helped #tweet

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It’s GBBO night and I’m still pissed off that Mak got sent home last week in favour of Waistcoat Guy who failed every challenge #tweet

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Second morning in the new job was rough owing to this horrid cold that’s taken me over. Back in bed for lunch to replenish energy for the afternoon #tweet

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Make sure you click through to behold the best Bandcamp Daily headline ever > @Bandcamp #tweet

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We’ve been told Govt listens to the experts so let’s see how that goes > @MichealLehane #tweet

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Film review — Beyond Skyline

I knew going in this would be different from the first Skyline, but no one told me they Evil Dead II’ed it, and jazzed it up with yer ones from The Raid for good measure. More…

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Film review — Maniac Cop 3: Badge of Silence

Maniac Cop 2 isn’t streaming anywhere but this one is, so… Insert ‘Maniac Cop is a tautology’ gag here. Anyway, the relatively few kills are fairly inventive, given the limitations of its hospital setting. And it’s got a satirical bent that prefigures the moral degradation of Nightcrawler by decades. Ted Raimi replacing his more illustrious brother for the TV reporter cameo was a bad omen, I have to say, but nothing prepared me for the nutzoid finale. This one goes out with a bang, indeed. More…

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