Introducing the Weekly Viewing Log

magic-lantern

This old abandoned site’s got life in it yet. This past week I received an email inquiring about advertising on this site, and also noticed that a spammy botsite sucked up the entirety of my last entry. Also Chris Chang, in his Film Comment review of Disorder, a film distributed by my company dGenerate Films, referred to me as a blogger, even though I’ve been working professionally as a print film critic for two years and now write and edit film articles for Fandor’s Keyframe. Once a blogger, always a blogger.

So I’m thinking of coming back to Shooting Down Pictures (a name which, by the way, I’m not fond of – what was I thinking when I came up with that?) and reviving it by going back to how the site started before it was even called Shooting – a weekly digest of what I’ve been watching. One caveat is that I’m including not just movies but pretty much any media experience involving a screen, including web videos, TV broadcasts, etc. I’m taking a cue from Karina Longworth‘s tumblr and embracing the post-cinematic world we are now living in.

Dedicated to all my old friends from the good old days at IMDb Classic Film Boards.

Week of April 4-10, 2011

Michael Jackson’s 1983 performance of “Billie Jean” at the Motown 25 special, on YouTube

“Sensualizing the Visual” – five film series of 1960s films by Bruce Baillie and Gunnar Nelson. Standouts: “To Parsifal” and “Quixote. ” At DocFilms, Chicago.

– 5 minutes of second half of NCAA Men’s Basketball finals, on NCAA.com

Old Joy (dir. Kelly Reichardt) on Fandor

In a Better World (dir. Susanne Bier) – reviewed for this week’s Time Out Chicago

– 20 clips of The Tree of Life (dir. Terrence Malick) at twowaysthroughlife.com

“Multi-Media Victorian: The Magic Lantern, The Metropolis and the Extraordinary Ballads of George R. Sims” – turn of the 20th century pre-cinema magic lantern show of vintage English slides, presented by David Francis and Joss Marsh. At University of Chicago Film Studies Center.

– Last five holes of Saturday coverage of The Masters on TheMasters.com

– First 20 minutes of Life and Nothing But (dir. Bertrand Tavernier) on Fandor

– Last five holes of Sunday coverage of The Masters on TheMasters.com

– Opening credits sequences of six Chinese films in preparation for video essay for the Moving Image Source: City of Life and Death; Disorder; Oxhide 2; Single Man; Thomas Mao and Winter Vacation, on DVD and Quicktime

Author: alsolikelife

This is my pet project

  • http://archivesandauteurs.blogspot.com/ Kathryn

    Glad to see you back here – looking forward to reading your weekly digests. I really enjoyed your video essay on 'Old Joy' on Fandor. I don't know if it was the same in the US but in the UK the DVD release included a short film called 'Slitch' directed by Dianne Belino which was great too. I'd had the soundtrack to it for years but no way of seeing it until it was added to the release of 'Old Joy'. The music in both is just wonderful too.
    That magic lantern show sounds really interesting, have you written about it anywhere?

  • alsolikelife

    Hey, it's been a while. Did you ever make it to NYC?

    Thanks for watching the Old Joy video (not many people did, bleh). I kind of

    wonder if I let Yo La Tengo dominate the piece too much, so that it

    resembled more of a highbrow movie trailer than a video essay proper

    (whatever that is).

    The lantern show was probably the highlight for me last week. it was a truly

    “multimedia” event where lecture and slides also made way for poetry recital

    and group singalongs – a wonderful attempt to immerse the audience in the

    sights and sounds of turn of the century London. Left me with quite an

    impression of George Sims, a giant of a celebrity back in his day – as a

    writer he was as celebrated as Dickens – who is all but unknown now. Much of

    his prose writing seems to resemble present-day blogging for its

    first-person diaristic qualities. His ballads were the inspiration for many

    magic lantern presentations.

    Here's the event description:

    http://filmstudiescenter.uchic

    The presenters seem to have been touring this past month, went to Ireland

    and Harvard – they are based in Indiana. Here's a link to the Magic Lantern

    Society in London, though it doesn't seem they've been active recently:

    http://www.magiclantern.org.uk

  • http://archivesandauteurs.blogspot.com/ Kathryn

    Hey Kevin,
    Thanks for the links to the Magic Lantern Society. The event you were at sounds amazing, I'll need to keep an eye out for similar events in London.

    No, never made it to New York yet though we have moved to London, which I'm absolutely loving. New York is still on the agenda as a plan in a year or so – just financial constraints that make it slightly unrealistic i.e. the cost of studying at NYU!

    I haven't watched that many video essays by film critics so I don't have much to compare it to but I don't think the music dominated the piece any more than it should, given that the music was, to me anyway, central to the film.

  • http://profiles.google.com/ms.katew Kate W

    That multimedia VIctorian sounds awesome! (Kate in Chicago)

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  • Jenna Jakeman

    I don’t know if it was the same in the US but in the UK the DVD release
    included a short film called ‘Slitch’ directed by Dianne Belino which
    was great too. I’d had the soundtrack to it for years but no way of
    seeing it until it was added to the release of ‘Old Joy’. The music in
    both is just wonderful too.

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