• From Johnie To’s Life Without Principle

I’m writing this on a southbound bus, on my way home to Chicago from the Wisconsin Film Festival in Madison. The ride’s so bumpy that most words I type come out misspelled, and our extremely Wisconsinite driver—who looks exactly like an overgrown Campbell’s Soup Kid—devoted such unnecessary piety (to say nothing of time) to his bus safety spiel that it felt as if he were leading us in prayer. But considering I paid just $9 for my ticket, I really have no right to complain.

Also, I had a lovely weekend. In three and a half days I attended 15 screenings (two of which were of Johnnie To’s Life Without Principle, a work of film art of the highest order; I hope Chicagoans have a chance to see it soon), enjoyed several pleasant lakeside strolls, and ate my fill of good meals. Most of Madison’s main streets are paved with cement, making them the same color as many of the university buildings: the campus has a uniform look, as if it were coming into being from a graphite sketch. It’s a good backdrop on which to set the new impressions gained from films.