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Farrago: Review


I’ve lost my love for cinema. My life is crumbling, and these films no longer fulfil me the way they did before. And to my dear reader, I’m terribly sorry. I’ve been a fool, and you’ve paid the price. Last Wednesday, I went to the cinema for what I didn’t realise would be the last time. I was watching the hour of commercials that precede the film when an advertisement for Essie, the nail polish company, appeared on screen. I was unphased until my arch-nemesis, Colin, stepped into the frame.

I felt oddly proud of him for finding work as an actor. More time away from me, I figured, before my blood boiled. A little sticker appeared next to his face that read: “as mentioned on Brian Novak’s film blog”. I always knew he was a scam artist, but even I couldn’t see that he was an undercover Essie shill. He exploited me and this very column to swindle my poor readers to grow their fingernails, so they’d need to buy more FUCKING ESSIE! He made me unwittingly betray my one principal of anti-product placement. And without Farrago to accommodate my ramblings, my YouTube channel wouldn’t be anywhere near as popular as it is today. So in a way this is your fault, Farrago. He saw my newfound fame and exploited it. To paraphrase Frances McDormand from Fargo, was all this emotional pain worth a little bit of money, Colin?

For my final review, I shall not be examining a film. Rather, in the spirit of Frances McDormand, I turn to this dear student magazine. While I’m eternally grateful that you published my work, you also assisted a sociopathic scam artist. So let me give you a little trigger warning—oh, how you love those. This is going to be brutal, you bunch of fucking hippies. Actually, no. Wankers. That’s what you are. A bunch of wankers! I’m sorry to lash out, but I will not apologise. I spent last Tuesday curled up in a ball on the floor of my apartment screaming, “I’m crumpled?!”. My innards feel like they’ve been swallowed by a whale, as if they were a less wooden version of Pinocchio.

It pains me to write these words, but I must. As you may have gathered, in addition to the Colin debacle, Millicent has left me. Jessica, her nosey colleague, read one of my reviews where I detailed some unsound gossip, and tensions quickly escalated. Millicent also said I was a bad boyfriend, but that might have just been in the heat of the moment. I’m not sure about anything anymore. It’s almost like I’m only now discovering that she’s a completely different person to who I thought she was, and I can’t trust anything to be what it appears to be. And yet, Farrago had the audacity to publish this incorrect world view without telling me! Arseholes, I tell you. And another thing—I notice you’ve been tagging my film reviews as ‘satire’? Why is that?

I keep thinking back to that final conversation with Millicent. Maybe it’s partly my fault. I suppose we’re all just looking for some emotional connection; so we hold on tightly when we think we’ve found it. Maybe that’s not a bad thing—we can’t afford to be picky. Then again, the fact that it’s so rare makes it so beautiful when we do find it. Or, when we think we’ve found it. Honestly, I lie to myself so much that I can’t distinguish the lies from the truth anymore, so perhaps Millicent was just the illusion of love. But love’s only an intangible emotion, so Christ knows what the real thing feels like. As you can probably tell, I’m not in the mood for coherent thought. I was walking around my flat the other day and almost everything reminded me of this past year: my fingernail contraptions, the framed photos of me and Millicent, and my little bowl of now mouldy Corn flakes. Even the computer I use to type these reviews brings back memories. But these reviews are going to end soon.

I just had a little cry in the shower. It honestly feels like the entire point of my past happiness was just to bring me down harder. Maybe the true purpose of Farrago, and Enamemates, and relationships is to make me even more depressed. I’ve got to adjust now. If my perception of Millicent was wrong, then what else is? It’s like I’m learning everything from the beginning again. I may as well be that USB man in a cell, so alone and angry. Or maybe I’m strapped into wires like The Matrix, and this is all an elaborate social experiment to see how much fuckery the human brain can tolerate. Anyway, I’m going to clip my nails now. They never needed to be that long. I think I just need some sleep.

N/A stars.

“At the Movies with Brian Novak” is a movie review column by the fictitious Brian Novak, otherwise known as the real James Gordon.

Farrago's magazine cover - Edition Two 2023


What would you find if you walked through the looking glass into another time? Why are all the plastic googly eyes you spilt over your bedroom floor following your every move? The entire universe and beyond is your disco ball of scintillating possibility.

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