Sunday links

29th May 2016

Links from the past week for this holiday weekend.

Black Dog: this is terrific – frames (one of which is above) from comic book artist and filmmaker Dave McKean’s graphic-novel biography of painter Paul Nash, created as part of the first world war centenary art project 14-18 Now; courtesy of the Guardian.

• The high times and hard fall of Carl Laemmle Jr.: a Hollywood tragedy, beautifully told by Farran Smith Nehme for Film Comment, linked to this great-looking MoMA season; Laemmle was undone by the spiralling budget on the 1936 Show Boat from which this comes – Helen Morgan (Julie) with ‘Can’t Help Lovin’ Dat Man’… beautiful and bizarre (see Irene Dunne shimmy!), and with the racial stereotypes from the time.

• How Bresson creates profound emotion from small moments: marking 50 years since the release of Au hasard Balthazar, Leigh Singer for the BFI spins a glorious visual essay about the great director’s work.

The screenplayer: Sam Wasson for The Criterion Collection on Robert Altman’s Hollywood satire.

Bob at 75 – Dylan in the movies: a significant birthday this past week, celebrated for the BFI by Craig Williams…

• … and this is from Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid – with Dylan’s ‘Knocking on Heaven’s Door’ (features gunfight):

Answers to questions I’ve been asked: something of an oddity, but really interesting nonetheless – a Dropbox link to an account by Mickey Fisher of how he came to write and then sell to Hollywood the script for the TV show Extant.

Donald Trump, reality chimera: Robert Greene for Sight & Sound on non-fiction performance:

Might media illiteracy, in general – and a broad misunderstanding of the nature of nonfiction performance, specifically – be partly to blame for Trump’s ascension? If we as a culture could read images better, might we be less susceptible to the song and dance of a reality TV-trained life-actor like The Donald?

• Moholy-Nagy: Future Present, vision and precision in a fluid braid: Roberta Smith for The New York Times on a Guggenheim show that I so want to see.

Celebrating women architects: an essential resource from Historic England.

Bookforum talks with Gary Indiana: Sarah Nicole Prickett interviews the critic and novelist in an oblique and oddball conversation.

Nigels against the world: one of the best pieces I’ve read on Brexit and its discontents, by Ferdinand Mount for London Review of Books.

The enduring whiteness of the American media: a ‘long read’ for the Guardian by Howard W French:

The importance of diversity in the media – as in other sectors of society – is not about scoring points in some imaginary scale of civic virtue. It has nothing to do with the granting of favours – or even concessions – by a white majority. It is akin to restoring vision to a creature with impaired sight, making it whole and allowing it to function at the full limits of its perceptive and analytical capacity. The majority cannot understand this – cannot realise that it is partly blind – because its own provincialism has persisted uninterrupted for so long.

• Peter Thiel just gave other billionaires a dangerous blueprint for perverting philanthropy: Felix Salmon on the implications of the Hulk Hogan-Gawker case.

Speed intoxication: for LA Review of Books, Jeffrey L. Kosky muses on Mark C. Taylor’s book Speed Limits: Where Time Went and Why We Have So Little Left – which I would definitely read if I had the time.

• The Battle of Jutland animation: more First World War, and exceptionally well done…

The Battle of Jutland Animation from NIck on Vimeo.

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