【明報專訊】The new COVID restrictions have cancelled or postponed many long-awaited movies and live shows. Cannes awardees Drive my Car by Ryûsuke Hamaguchi and Titane by Julia Ducournau, and the all-time blockbuster sequel The Matrix Resurrections, to name a few. Local favourites Hins Cheung and Dayo Wong both saw their sold-out shows delayed, along with countless small productions across the city. After an excruciating 2021, the show business braces itself for what may be another winter.
Meanwhile, art lovers return to their personal entertainment libraries—what have we got? Joan Didion's documentary on Netflix tops my list, along with her writings. The remarkable American writer passed away earlier last year, leaving behind a series of delightful works that freely travel the space between fiction and non-fiction. For something more solemn, try Viktor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning, an autobiographical work about the writer's time in the Nazi concentration camps. It isn't a coincidence for the book to recur on recommended lists in trying times like the COVID pandemic.
If you are after a good laugh, Dario Fo's Accidental Death of an Anarchist may be a good choice, widely considered a classic of 20th-century satirical theatre. Based on the 1969 Piazza Fontana bombing, the play follows a quick-witted and mischievous fraudster known as the Maniac who outsmarts the authorities at every turn. One cannot help but side with the lunatic's boisterous pursuits. I also enjoyed The Man Who Died Twice from the Thursday Murder Club series for its unusual choice of protagonists—four detectives from an elderly home. Is it the crime scene or the inevitable inconvenience of ageing they're trying to navigate? Both books are available in electronic versions on Amazon and other vendors, saving you a trip to the library.
Lastly, in an unexpected turn of events, I found myself consumed in the 2016 Fox/Netflix series Lucifer which concluded with a sixth season last year. The comic drama portrays the devil Lucifer on vacation in Los Angeles, solving crimes with the local Police Department while resolving his identity crisis. The show ultimately dismisses the dualism of good and evil with clever textual references and a generous dose of compassion, something we all need now.
I hope these suggestions will help you through the two weeks of COVID restrictions. Stay safe, and meet you back at live performance venues soon.
Mona C. has a strong appetite for stories. Feed her enough.
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