Last weekend was a touch busy, what with getting Prince Charles, Judi Dench and one or two others on screen, so forgive these Links being a couple of days late.
• William Shakespeare, playwright and poet, is dead at 52: among the very best of the many Bard-related articles from the weekend is this New York Times obituary written by Louis Bayard as it might have been in 1616.
• Only Angels Have Wings – Hawks’s genius takes flight: Michael Sragow on Hawks’s great 1939 aviation film, newly released by The Criterion Collection in the US and – thrillingly – in the UK too.
• Paolo Gioli, maximal minimalist: a fascinating post by David Bordwell about an Italian avant-garde filmmaker of whom I’d never heard.
• A nomad in Paris – revisiting the films of Ra(o)ul Ruiz: an excellent Sight&Sound article by Ian Christie (from which I’ve appropriated the lead image of Ruiz in Klimt, 2006) prompted by the Cinematheque Francaise retrospective of the great Chilean director.
• The controversial history of letterboxing for movies on your TV: Ernie Smith at Atlas Obscura on a topic about which I feel very strongly.
• To Belfast, for ‘Alan Clarke in Northern Ireland’: Richard T. Kelly writes about the work of one the most significant filmmakers to have worked in television.
• Dickensian: rather against the critical grain, Luke McKernan thoughtfully regrets that there is to be no second series of the BBC’s mash-up.
• Why everyone is freaking out over Emily Nussbaum’s Pulitzer Prize for criticism: Alyssa Rosenberg for The Washington Post on why the Pulitzer for criticism being awarded to the exceptional writer on television at The New Yorker is so important.
• Doing time – confessions of a crime reporter: delightful recollections from veteran hack (and one-time colleague) Duncan Campbell, as featured at the Guardian.
• Jason Hall on Wilkie Collins: a great selection from FiveBooks by the Victorian literature expert of books by an author who is still scandalously under-valued.
• Enid Blyton, moral guide: at Aeon, Nakul Krishna reads the writer of all our childhoods.
• The big chill: for Bookforum, Sam Lipsyte reviews the new novel by Don DeLillo, Zero K (published here 19 May):
Zero K deserves to win old and new readers alike. It’s a marvelous blend of DeLillo’s enormous gifts. His bleak humor and edged insight, the alertness and vitality of his prose, the vast, poetic extrapolations are all evident.
• Degas invents a new world: terrific art writing by Anka Muhlstein for New York Review of Books on MoMA’s show of Degas’ monotypes…
• Edgar Degas – A strange new beauty: … and here’s a MoMA video about the show and how Degas made these remarkable images.
• The real thing: a lovely review by Jenni Quilter for London Review of Books of a new biography of painter Grace Hartigan and her circle.
• Your media business will not be saved: smart words from Joshua Topolsky:
We’ll have to learn a thousand hard lessons, most of them centered around the idea that if you want to make something really great, you can’t think about making it great for everyone. You have to make it great for someone. A lot of people, but not every person.
• The digital in the humanities: an interview with Laura Mandell: for LA Review of Books, Melissa Dinsman interviews the director of the Initiative for Digital Humanities, Media, and Culture at Texas A&M.
• Mapping an ecosystem of open images: excellent slides from Theo Kuechel, in part addressed to the question, How can we better exploit the wealth of open digital images available online?
• Things I learned working on Serial: thoughtful reflections about communities from Kristen Taylor.
• ‘Brush Up Your Shakespeare’: well, what else? This version is from the 2014 Prom with the John Wilson Orchestra, with Michael Jibson and James Doherty.