For Memorial Day, Hunter Gatherer posted an excellent piece on the 1963 war film, The Victor. I recommend reading what he has to say in full, but here is the snippet that accompanies the clip above:
“The particularly strong portrayal of the less heroic side of war’s consequences was shocking given the year that the film was made. One scene in particular, purportedly inspired by the execution of Eddie Slovik, set the execution of a deserter in the last months of the war to Frank Sinatra’s rendition of ‘Have Yourself a Merry Christmas’.”
The adjective that comes to mind for Gene Kelly is smooth: smooth voice, smooth mover. That’s what I like so much about this; putting Kelly on roller skates is like adding polish to wax. The whole piece glides effortlessly, and its incredible to think that this camera tracking was possible in the mid 50s.
The original documentary has been taken down, however if you get a chance to see the original it is a ground breaking film about the biggest heroin dealer in Harlem in the 70s. The premise is that drug lord, Nicky Barnes was different in that he delivered a ‘good’ product and was professional.
This has been something that has been on my mind lately, I recently met someone who made his money from Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants, he was a personal friend of Colonel Sanders and said that what made him different was that he cared about the product.
When I worked at an Internet incubator as an ‘Entrepreneur in Residence’, we looked obsessively at how we would build a viral product, any viral product. In essence this seemed to be the moral equivalent of selling bad drugs, possibly a more dubious standpoint than Nicky Barnes’ good drugs.
What I am getting at here is not that selling KFC is morally bad, but that it is wrong to think that cynically selling a bad product well marketed, will succeed. McDonalds sell incredibly tasty food – it just happens to be bad for you. But when it comes to capitalism there is a responsibility not just to believe in a good product, but a product that is good for people. i.e. not tobacco or slave harvested cotton or heroin. The line moves. Kentucky Fried Chicken only becomes a moral hazard when it is too cheap and too delicious that people become habitual users.
Throughout Mr Untouchable, including in this trailer, people correct themselves after using terminology such as ‘successful entrepreneur’. That this kind of language is used at all, smacks of a society as a whole, which needs moral regulation, not just banks on Wall street which have reward without risk.
This clip contains this unbelievable line: “he was giving something back to the community that he was abusing and killing”, wherever this line applies, unregulated capitalism has failed.
The London Times’ technology section ran this piece showing the current state of the art in 3d animation. Normally this stuff is not that interesting and just a bit naff. But, having used 3d animation software fairly intensively in the past, this does seem genuinely impressive.
I’m of the view that if you are going to eat meat, you should be prepared to kill it. At the very least you should be aware of what you are eating. In this clip, UK chef, Jamie Oliver presents one of those cushy awards style shows where people sit around round dinner tables sipping wine. He asks the guests to select the paler of a bunch of cute baby chicks and put them in a box (these are the males). He then gasses them, something that is done to all male chicks by egg producers around the world, organic or regular. Male baby chicks are disposable, non-financially viable assets. The guests are predictably and presumably hypocritically (if they eat eggs) upset.
A voyage of discovery to see where America’s food comes from. This seems like a good topic, since where America’s food comes from has changed more in the last 20 years than the previous 100, replacing the bucolic ideal of the American cowboy rancher with giant agribusinesses and Yale graduate presidents in Stetsons.
(I like the idea of these extended clips for PBS documentaries)
A nice clip from The New Shock Of The New, which I assume is an update to the classic Robert Hughes series of the 70s. The original series would rank in my top 10 all time TV programs, so I am now scurrying around trying to find a complete version.
via Andy Jones
Be Kind Rewind is about a guy who works in a video store who is magnetic, accidentally erases all the videos and decides to remake them himself. A bunch of French guys decided to do the same with the trailer for the movie itself. So deliciously meta. Be Kind Rewind Sweded Trailer