The Windup Girl
At the centre of the novel is an idea so brilliant in conception that even with the sound writing skills on display one can't help but be a smidge disappointed with the execution. It's tense and energetic and appropriately cynical and above all frighteningly realistic with that realism being at times scarily bleak. Characterisaton is adequate for the most part with some of the men of the piece becoming slightly indistinguishable from each other, however, the women are all drawn with considerable depth and interest. A really good read that in the hands of a great writer could have been a masterpiece.
It's not a good thing when one falls asleep three times during a film and can still pick the ending about forty minutes from the end. It's also a bad sign when the film takes an interminable time to get there. Smith, outstanding in the unfairly maligned I Am Legend, fails to show anything more than hammish tempestuousness here and he's failed miserably by his director, Muccino, who brings nothing of any substance to the table.
While the sex-soaked intimacy of their live sets is slightly watered-down in this debut LP from the London-based duo of Alice Costelloe and KC Underwood there is still enough present to be kind of swept up in the edgy angst being divulged. Lyrically, the album soars on tracks like 'Chair' and Costelloe's willingness to bring into question her take on relationship and love - she's only eighteen - is brave rather than earnest. The fact that she's an equal playing partner to Underwood, some eleven years her senior, is also reinforcement to the fact that this is a duo with far greater substance than their simple sound of acoustic and electric guitar might suggest.