A recap of the new releases on Netflix, On Demand, and Blu-ray/DVD, including "Snowpiercer," "Maleficent," "Nightbreed," "F For Fake" and "La Dolce Vita."
Marie writes: I may have been born in Canada, but I grew-up watching Sesame Street and Big Bird, too. Together, they encouraged me to learn new things; and why now I can partly explain string theory.That being the case, I was extremely displeased to hear that were it up Romney, as President he wouldn't continue to support PBS. And because I'm not American and can't vote in their elections, I did the only thing I could: I immediately reached for Photoshop....
(Click image to enlarge.)
It was like an episode from "The Twilight Zone." The Academy Award for best picture went to a silent film in black and white. The unstoppable "The Artist," which had nothing going for it but boundless joy, defeated big-budgeted competitors loaded with expensive stars because … well, because it was so darned much fun. Its victory will send Hollywood back to its think-tanks.
Lesson for the day: How to have fun while wasting time... Marie writes: welcome to DRAW A STICK MAN, a delightful Flash-based site prompting viewers to draw a simple stick figure which then comes to life! Ie: the program animates it. You're given instructions about what to draw and when, which your dude uses to interact with objects onscreen. Thanks go to club member Sandy Kahn who heard about it from her pal Lauren, in Portland Oregon.Note: here's a screen-cap of what I drew; I've named him Pumpkin Head.
Marie writes: I love illustrators best in all the world. There's something so alive about the scratch and flow of pen & ink, the original medium of cheeky and subversive wit. And so when club member Sandy Kahn submitted links for famed British illustrator Ronald Searle and in the hopes others might find him interesting too, needless to say, I was quick to pounce; for before Ralph Steadman there was Ronald Searle... "The two people who have probably had the greatest influence onmy life are Lewis Carroll and Ronald Searle."-- John LennonVisit Kingly Books' Ronald Searle Gallery to view a sordid collection of wicked covers and view sample pages therein. (click to enlarge image.) And for yet more covers, visit Ronald Searle: From Prisoner of War to Prolific Illustrator at Abe Books.
View image Unimaginable horror.
Now this is how to make a list. Richard Corliss writes for Time magazine, a mainstream publication, but that doesn't prevent him from slipping in those inspired, idiosyncratic Corli-cues™ of his. (I just made up that word, and I know it's not a very good one.) Argue all you like with RC's choices (that is the point), this list strikes me as a brilliant balancing of the expected and the unexpected, the mainstream and the marginal, from 1896 to 2004. I think it will thrill you. It might shock you. It may even... horrify you! So if any of you feel that you do not care to subject your nerves to such a strain, now's your chance to, uh, well, we warned you.
So, sure, you see "Red Dragon" (2002) on there and you immediately think, "The Brett Ratner Hannibal Lecter movie? Has he lost his mind?" Then you think, "Well, at least it's better than the Ridley Scott one. Although he also liked that." And then you remember that Corliss never much cared for "Silence of the Lambs" ("a competent but pallid version of Thomas Harris' soul-chilling novel"), so it kind of makes perverse sense.
And then, beyond the solid chunk of essential 1960s and '70s titles (which together account for 11 slots in the reverse-chronological list of 25 -- and that doesn't even include "Don't Look Now," although of course it should), you spot... "Bambi" (1942). Doe! Why didn't I think of that?! Disney's mommy-killing nightmare was surely the most traum-atic horror movie for every generation of children since it was released -- and one that parents still enjoy "sharing with" (or inflicting upon) their kids. (Compare and contrast with the "Baby Mine" scene of the previous year's "Dumbo," an excruciatingly protracted exercise in maternal separation anxiety that is the essence of emotional torture porn.)
The punchline, though, is the last (and oldest) title in the list, by the Lumiere brothers. I'm not going to give it away, but in its day it provided 50 seconds of terror that must have compared with the "Psycho" shower sequence.
(Full list and links after the jump...)
Q. Re the ending of "Planet of the Apes," I wanted to throw in a cent or two after reading the theory by Josh Daniel of Slate.com, as quoted in the Answer Man. Thade (or whoever) hardly needs to spend years developing a space program in order to go back into time. The craft that Mark Wahlberg uses at the end is not the one that he came on, but the one that the chimp arrived on during the climax. Wahlberg's original craft is still at the bottom of the lake. Assuming that there was another ape revolution which led to the freeing of Thade and assuming that the sunken craft was good ol' fashioned Detroit rolling stock, one could assume that Thade retrieved the craft from the lake. When the monkey ancestors passed on their knowledge to future generations, one might also assume that they passed on the knowledge of how to fly such a thing. That would be all that he needs to go back in time and create the events that would one day lead to the twist ending of the only semi-disappointing Tim Burton film to date. (Peter Sobczynski, Chicago)