The Lung Brothers

Hanging out at the extreme end of the long tail ...

Monday, April 25, 2005

You can call me Yusuf ...

Ah, casting ... that has GOT to be the most fun you can have while making a film ... talk about playing [Gg]od ...

For me, Lung the Younger nailed Tommy Lee Jones as the FBI agent ... I mean, Harvey Keitel could do a reprise of his Thelma and Louise role, but really ... TLJ is The Man.

And the love interest? For these two leads, you really need a Lolita thing going on ... Scarlett Johansson as the Amish hitchiker ...

But what about the leads? You don't think we'll get Yusuf and Bobby on our budget, do you??

For Bobby Fischer, you really need Jim Carrey ... maybe he's a bit young ... so perhaps it's Christopher Lloyd, with Jim Carrey doing the flashback sequences ...

And for Cat-cum-Yusuf, you really can't beat a cameo appearence by Osama bin-Laden ... Okay, maybe that's too controversial ... Let's say Tom Waits ...

And of course, you need "roadside Diner" comic relief ... Gotta be Bill Murray as a wacky short-order cook, with Lily Tomlin as the sassy, aging waitress ...

It practically writes itself ...


Friday, April 22, 2005

Talent Recognises Genius

Yesterday, Lung the Elder pitched what has to be the best idea for a film that I’ve heard in years.

A whacky, road movie where Bobby Fischer and Cat Stevens (AKA Yusuf Islam) travel across the States together avoiding arrest from the Feds. The whole thing could be livened up with a snappy soundtrack from ZZ top, thereby working in the twin beard motif again. Think of ‘Midnight Run’ or ‘Thelma and Louise’ but with more depth and pathos.

They would have to be pursued by some comical FBI agent who could be played by Tommy Lee Jones (although he’s played that role a little too often already) or maybe Cuba Gooding Jr. - crappy road movies are obviously not beneath him. There could be various scenes where zany duo give the goofy Feds the slip using their special abilities as ex-world chess champion and ..erm… devout Muslim who once wrote ‘Morning Has Broken’.

There could also be a few humorous scenes where the two argue with each other. Bobby can’t concentrate on his Luzhin defence because Yusuf’s playing the Imam’s morning prayers too loud over the radio or maybe an exasperated Yusuf throws Bobby’s ‘Learn Icelandic in 12 Easy Steps’ tapes out of the window. There’s a lot of potential here, people.

So, here’s the deal. We’re going to open this one to the floor. How do you think this scenario could be improved? Should the trip be made in a van, a Chevy or on choppers? How do we work in some romantic interest and who should play it? Which director would be up to the task?

We await the fruits of your wisdom in our comments box.


Mode of Transport:
Thanks for the input, WH. You’re definitely onto something with the body in the trunk premise and I reckon we can settle on van or mobile home as vehicle of preference. The space inside would be small enough to give us cramped dramatic tension but just big enough for tracking shots.

Romantic Interest:
Yeah Meg Ryan’s irritating, chirpy nature would play off well against Fischer’s and Islam’s stoic temperaments. However, I can’t help thinking that if I was stuck in a van with her on a long road trip, burka or no burka, she’d eventually drive me batshit and I’d probably end up chucking her off a bridge somewhere in Idaho.

Rico, a good friend, came out with an inspired alternative as a candidate for romantic interest, Arundhadi Roy. No, hear me out. She’s got the looks, she’s got the politics and I could just imagine Bob and Cat (sorry, I mean Yus) having a jealous spat over her. Although, in fairness to WH, the Rook surname is just too good an idea to pass up.

Now we are missing one of the most important aspects of the story here. As with the chicken crossing the road, we have to ask why, Yusuf Islam and Bobby Fischer are crossing America in a van/mobile home. Is it for romantic reasons (A Sure Thing)? Is it for financial reasons (Rain Man)? Is it to attend a show or competition of some kind (Pricilla, Queen of the Desert)? Running away for emotional reasons (Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore)? What would be their motivation?

We await your sage pearls of creativity.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Weekenz and Amenz

Yeah, OK. We have been neglectful little bloggers haven’t we? But pray, lay not the blame at our feet, for Young the Elder and I have been busy fulfilling our duty as the hardest-assed partiers this side of the Greenwich meridian. Excuses? You want excuses? You can’t handle our excuses!

Weekend 1: EL STAG

Two weekends ago, LtE and I were charged with organising a stag weekend for an English mate of ours. Note that I choose the word ‘mate’ here and not ‘friend’. The way I see it, a ‘friend’ is someone whose company you enjoy, whereas a ‘mate’ is someone who shares your insecurities, gets you into fights and helps you on your merry way to cirrhosis of the liver.

During the whole weekend I couldn’t help but be reminded of wildlife documentaries. I mean, picture it, a Yank, a Mick and eighteen British ‘lads’ out on a drunken, totty-hunt in the backstreets ye olde Barcelona. LtE told me he felt a little like Segourney Weaver in the film ‘Gorillas in the Mist’, chewing leaves with the dangerous silverbacks and hoping that they would accept us as one of their own. Also, twenty drunken ‘guiris*’ staggering around the Gothic Quarter tend to attract a lot of attention from the local predators. The pickpockets and prostitutes were eyeing us up, looking for the drunkest member of the group as we drifted past, just as leopards will check out a herd of gazelles in the Serengeti hoping to spot the weakest fawn.

By some miracle, none of group got their wallets lifted and nobody ended up either in a hospital ward nor police cell. I won’t go into the details of the whole sordid weekend but safe to say it was a reasonable success. Last day, the groom gave us both an inebriated punch in the shoulder that loosened our fillings and thanked us for organising the gig, which he referred to as ‘seamless’. High praise indeed, although I wish he had used an adjective without so many ‘esses’ in it. That way he might not have decorated the fronts of our shirts with quite so much spittle and beer.

The highpoint of the weekend (or lowpoint depending on your politics) was the stripclub. I had never, ever been to a stripclub before, so even though I’m well passed my mid-thirties, it did feel like somewhat of a coming-of-age experience. Had I been younger, I’m sure it would have been a thrill and a half, but at this stage it just seemed like a bunch of girls swinging around bars, taking their clothes off and trying to get you to buy them overpriced drinks which they sip once and return to the barman. It was bizarre, artificial and a little sad, just what I had expected really. Still though, as cultural coming-of-age experiences go, it beats the hell out of being hung by your nipples in a tepee.

Now, if that was a stripclub, I can’t imagine what a stripmall must be like. Dear me, I have lived such a sheltered life.

Weekend 2: EL CLUB

Last weekend an old friend from home, Noel came over to visit. Before coming, he offered to be a mule for any product that you can buy in Ireland but unattainable over here. He was not amused when I asked him to swallow a condom full of Marmite**.

Noel is a member of a gentleman’s club in Ireland, which has a link to various other clubs around the world. One of the things he wanted to do while over was to check out the Barcelona affiliate of the organisation. So the second evening of his visit, we both donned jackets and ties, CS put on one of her snazzy frocks and the three of us nabbed a taxi uptown. This club was in one of the most beautiful buildings I have ever seen and in a part of town where a square foot of real estate would cost you a kidney and a half. The blank stare of the concierge seemed to agree completely with the little voice inside my head that was telling me, ‘Flee now, you don’t belong here’

The atmosphere inside was like a library only more so. Which was just as well because I really needed another fucking reason to feel nervous. It’s also renown for being one of the most right-wing gentleman’s clubs in the city and given that gentleman’s clubs as a whole are not exactly known for their Bolshevik leanings, that’s quite an achievement. So, given the nature of the clientele, we at least hoped to see a sweaty arms dealer or a bodyguarded ex-dictator there and fortunately the establishment did not let us down.

We were in the club bar, sitting on patent leather sofas surrounded by hardwood bookcases when a cleric walked in and asked if we had seen the barman. ‘Not in the last ten minutes’, I told him and turned back to Noel. The stunned and thrilled expression on Noel’s face was that of a bird spotter who’s just seen a rare crested tit fly by.

N: Tha...tha...that was a cardinal.
LtY: Piss off.
N: No really. It was a cardinal.
LtY: Oh come on. Probably just a bishop.
N: Listen you heathen. I’m still a practising catholic, so I know the threads and that guy was dressed as a cardinal.
CS: But the Pope was buried yesterday. If he’s a cardinal, what’s he doing here?
LtY: Yeah, they’ll be choosing a new Pope soon, shouldn’t he be sticking around Rome for the...whatchamacallit...the vote. As a cardinal, he could be a contender, right?
N: I suppose he does. That’s strange.
LtY: Maybe he got knocked out in the heats. Poor guy.
CS: No wonder he needs the barman so badly.

So, that’s our excuse. We’ve been entertaining friends over that past couple of weekends and as Sunday is the sacred posting day, there hasn’t been much time for quality blogging.

We shall try to make amends in the future.

* Guiri is the depreciative Spanish term for a pale, tacky foreigner. It will certainly not be the last time you see the word in this blog.

** Marmite is what Darth Vader would have had for breakfast. It is a black, gooey, salty yeast extract that you spread on toast, if you dare. Some people adore it; a lot of people can’t even look at it. I have been addicted to it since I was five years old. It’s not easy to score Marmite in Barcelona, but not impossible.

Thursday, April 07, 2005


Although I’m not really up on gossipy news, it does seem that an awful lot of heavyweight public figures are deliberately dying just to spoil Charles’ and Camilla’s wedding plans.

Just wait and see. The Dalai Lama will probably get hit by a bus the morning of Charles’ stag party.