---"I used to speak for the trees": Lorax shills for the Mazda CX-5 SUV
---Roderick Heath on Tree of Life
---The Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy files
---Everything is a Remix: Part 4 System Failure
---Denby's "The Artists: Notes on the Lost Art of Acting":
In the annual, routinized procession of contemporary movies—thrillers, teen horror films, digital spectacles—“The Artist” stands out as a fresh piece of work. Hazanavicius plays with our sense of how odd silence is; he intrudes sound like a stealthy predator into the bizarre, immaculate world of noiselessness. In the movie’s most striking sequence, Valentin has a nightmare: he dreams of a sounding world, but he cannot speak—his screams come out as dry heaves. But, apart from a few such brilliant bursts of invention, “The Artist” is an amiably accomplished stunt that pats silent film on the head and then escorts it back into the archive. The silent movies we see in “The Artist” all look like trivial, japish romps. (“Singin’ in the Rain” teased the silents the same way, sixty years ago.) Certainly, there’s no art form on display whose disappearance anyone would mourn. Hazanavicius’s jokes are playful but minor, even a little fussy, and after a while I began to think that the knowing style congratulates the audience on getting the gags rather than giving it any kind of powerful experience. “The Artist” lacks the extraordinary atmosphere of the silent cinema, the long, sinuous tracking shots, the intimacy with shadow and darkness. Well, you say, so what? The movie is just a high-spirited spoof. Yes, but why set one’s ambitions so low? The movie’s winningness feels paper-thin, and, as Peter Rainer pointed out in the Christian Science Monitor, “The Artist,” with its bright, glossy appearance, looks more like a nineteen-forties Hollywood production than like a silent movie.
---the subtleties of The Descendants
---feminist Pixar? The clip from Brave
---women directors missing from the Oscars and Wonder Woman!
---tips for guerilla filmmaking and connected documentarians
---how to survive a bad day on the set
---Google's motto at one time: "Don't Be Evil"
---the Kill Bill files
---End of the Century: the Story of the Ramones
---trailers for The Suicide Shop, Sound of Noise, Marley, Dorothy and the Witches of Oz, and Friends with Kids
---one problem with BASE jumping off of mountains
---Lena Dunham's Girls:
AVC: Your films and the show are very much about sort of aimless 20-somethings, and yet you are obviously anything but. How do you tap into that aimlessness?
LD: I think I definitely feel it. And even if it doesn’t exactly manifest itself in my professional life right now, I definitely feel just that confusion, that, “What am I supposed to be doing, and how am I supposed to be behaving? What is my place in all of this?” I definitely—when I first got out of college—was, “Should I be trying to write for a magazine?” And of course, all of my career plans were completely things that are extinct, and I was like, “Should I try to write for magazines? Should I be a novelist? Should I try to join a band?” Of course, there was no “Should I go to med school?” And I’m still, in the show, kind of processing an earlier experience of confusion. With the movie—it was very immediate—I made the movie after probably the least focused, most searching year of my life.
---the Military-Entertainment Complex
---"There are good reasons for imagining sterile environments in stories about the future. Space travel requires eliminating things that might float around in zero gravity; clean lines feel "modern" because they contrast with the accumulated mess of everyday existence. But isn't accumulated mess what defines us as individuals? Forster thought so, and figured we'd grow isolated without it — so, almost a century before computer geeks got around to it, he imagined Skype and the iPad:
`The round plate that she held in her hands began to glow. A faint blue light shot across it, darkening to purple, and presently she could see the image of her son, who lived on the other side of the earth, and he could see her. 'Kuno, what is it, dearest boy?' 'I want to see you not through the Machine,' said Kuno. 'I want to speak to you not through the Machine. I see something like you in this plate, but I do not see you. I want you to pay me a visit, so that we can meet face-to-face.' "
---lastly, "We, the Web Kids" by Piotr Czerski
The Mother’s Day Intertitle: Young Things of Her Dreams - Don’t panic, Americans! We have Mother’s Day on a different day here. This one, in fact. Suitably maternal image and intertitle from Nell Shipman’s THE GRU...
28 minutes ago