Thursday, December 31, 2009
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
¶“Bonnie and Clyde,” which, like “Psycho,” left audiences alarmed at their capacity to enjoy violence in the darkness of a movie theater.
¶“Jaws,” which, like Hitchcock’s films, used artfully cut sequences and carefully paced scenes to manipulate audiences and amp up their feelings of fear.
¶“Taxi Driver,” which, like “Psycho,” features a “lone-wolf outsider” who both frightens and repels us, even as he allows us to “see a glimpse of ourselves in him.”
¶Stanley Kubrick’s movies “Lolita,” “A Clockwork Orange” and “The Shining,” which, like “Psycho” and so many other Hitchcock films, share “an extreme appetite for technique that sometimes forgot ‘content’; a recognition of watching as perhaps the central expression of modern intelligence and a surgeon’s interest in the eye.”
---Does The Huffington Post exploit its bloggers?
While somewhat buzzed after tea (sweetened, I was told, by some sort of special honey), I remembered to ask Arianna if she worried about the number of writers being left unemployed by the new "freebie" culture.
"Our site is not built around the freebie," she said. "Our site is built around very hard-working editors and reporters who do all the curating and aggregating and original content. Then bloggers can write when they want, if they want." The Huffington Post's founder and editor in chief acknowledged that the question of how to fund journalism and pay a living wage "is still being worked out."
---Dan North explains the reveal
---Nancy Meyers and her movies designed for women
---13 important DIY films of the decade
---Video games' evolution thanks to social media
---Lastly, Anthony Lane looks at Donald Spoto's new biography of Grace Kelly:
"Hitchcock is the figure who wraps together the opposing views of Grace Kelly, and folds them into a single mystery. He knew and relished all the rumors, but would never have been so vulgar as to brandish what they proposed, like an emblazoned flag, in the course of the three films with Kelly. One quick flutter would suffice. He was the first director to listen closely to the gentle crack in that well-bred speaking voice (“improperly placed,” according to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts), and to register the wicked elongation of her vowels: “Oh now, don’t say you can’t go,” a scarlet-clad Grace tells Ray Milland in “Dial M for Murder,” lowering that final syllable into a two-toned croon. (She is cheating on him, and her lover is in the room.) During a famous exchange with François Truffaut, Hitchcock argued that “if sex is too blatant or obvious, there’s no suspense."
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Friday, December 25, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
"What has been lost in pop music these days is the combination of the visual and the imagery of the artist, along with the music—and both are just as important. So, even though the carefree nature of the album is something that people are latching onto right away about my stuff, I hope they will take notice of the interactive, multimedia nature of what I'm trying to do. The things I like to do and the theatrics, I like to incorporate them into the choreography. With my music, it's a party, it's a lifestyle, and it's about making the lifestyle the forefront of the music."
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Friday, December 11, 2009
"Yet what, in our brave new mediated world, is friendship becoming? The Facebook phenomenon, so sudden and forceful a distortion of social space, needs little elaboration. Having been relegated to our screens, are our friendships now anything more than a form of distraction? When they've shrunk to the size of a wall post, do they retain any content? If we have 768 "friends," in what sense do we have any? Facebook isn't the whole of contemporary friendship, but it sure looks a lot like its future. Yet Facebook—and MySpace, and Twitter, and whatever we're stampeding for next—are just the latest stages of a long attenuation. They've accelerated the fragmentation of consciousness, but they didn't initiate it. They have reified the idea of universal friendship, but they didn't invent it. In retrospect, it seems inevitable that once we decided to become friends with everyone, we would forget how to be friends with anyone. We may pride ourselves today on our aptitude for friendship—friends, after all, are the only people we have left—but it's not clear that we still even know what it means."
"Apps themselves aren't new--they're just the `programs' and `software' of old, repackaged and given a totally new spin by the mobile net--but they've become prominent because of advancing technology. And in a World where some TVs now run apps, where toddling babies can wirelessly Tweet what they're up to and cybernetic limbs seem closer to reality, then the only conclusion is that apps will soon be powering/tweaking/boosting/personalizing every bit of future tech in our lives."
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Thursday, December 3, 2009
ED HOWARD: What I appreciated about the film was how subtle it was, how introspective it was for an epic. In some ways, a lot of it doesn't even feel like a conventional epic. Sure, it's long, and filled with those widescreen crowd scenes that are pretty much the aesthetic bread and butter for the genre. It's even packed with Biblical allusions and Christ allegories, aligning it with the grand religious tales, from The Ten Commandments to The Passion of the Christ, that always seem to be prime subjects for these spectacles. But what sets Lawrence of Arabia apart from typical epics (which generally underwhelm me) is its texture. David Lean has a real eye—and ear; the film's soundtrack, beyond its bombastic score, is stunning—for details, for carving out emotions and themes from the smallest touches.
Sally Potter: "As a child, I probably knew every frame of Monsieur Hulot's Holiday. I knew the sequences off by heart. I think what indelibly struck me was not so much the comedy of it, which often felt slow, as the compassion in the observation: this observation of small moments, a swinging door. The emptiness of the soundtrack, which just has one or two effects dropped into it. Almost the feeling of it as a kind of meditation on loneliness and the social behaviour of people attempting to have a good time. It was the tragic part of the comedy that impressed me and the minimalism of the means with which it was realised. I think as a child I was experiencing it as a minimalist transcendent meditation more than as the work of a comic genius.I just quickly looked up something about Tati and discovered something which I hadn't known before, which was that he lived most of his life in poverty, having to raise mortgages on his previous films to raise money for the next ones. The solitariness of that position as a film-maker I realised was imbuing the films themselves with the melancholy. I found that a fascinating piece of hidden information about the work."
---The evolution of the hipster.
---Mini-mall marketing genius.
---Time to throw the laptop away: Cormac McCarthy's Olivetti.
---The art of getting noticed: Frederico Alvarez's Panic Attack!
---It is true that you can get noticed and published quickly thanks to Twitter.
---Our industrialized wasteland.
---Lastly, the mysterious Charlotte Gainsbourg/Beck video "Heaven Can Wait."