Welcome to The Morning Read for Tuesday, October 20th.
Happy 15th anniversary to Kevin Smith's first film, "Clerks," which played its first commercial dates in theaters this week in 1994. That's a wild anniversary to pass as a viewer and I'm sure it's doubly strange for him as a filmmaker.
I've been watching some episodes of "The Prisoner" on BluRay this weekend, and I'm amazed by how good they look. Clear, colorful, clean, with no sign of age or wear. Whoever's been holding on to the elements for this show deserves a raise and a new office because they are impressive. Not just good, but sort of unexpectedly great.
I'm going to be writing a series about this series soon, since I've never really done a good run at it in all my years online. I've crowed about how much I love it, but not why. Just looking at two episodes, my love's been rekindled with the same passion I always feel when I actually watch the show again. So much fun.
I've also been trying to do the tail end of the catch-up after my month on the road, and part of that is cleaning up the browser. I bookmark things all the time with an eye on either writing a piece about them or including them in a Morning Read, and since I didn't do one for so long, there were a number of things that stacked up that I should have posted earlier. I decided to start this week by blowing out everything I still had bookmarked, everything that wasn't a pressing news story, with one big fun Start Of The Week Morning Read grab bag.
Like, for example, whatever the heck this is. I don't even know what to call it. A time-waster. A hypnotic Flash trick. My buddy Kevin (whose show "Cougar Town" has turned out to be a huge hit, to the surprise of absolutely no one who knows him) pointed this one out on Twitter one night. And you should absolutely pay attention to Kevin, according to The Wrap, who named him one of the 50 TV insiders on Twitter that you should follow.
Speakin of Twitter, check out this link, in which Edgar Wright lays out one recent night of positively indecent fun on Twitter.
How about this one? It's a short film from BoingBoing called "Synesthesia." It's kind of amazing as an attempt to explain how people with this perception filter (I don't think I'm comfortable calling it a "disorder," since it seems like it's just a matter of processing the world differently) are processing whatever they input. It's worth eight minutes of your time. Totally.
See? And if you want another approximation of what synesthesia might be like, try this one courtesy the official website for "Where The Wild Things Are," the lovely and eccentric We Love You So:
So strange. So groovy.
RT @timalamo: Just translated a tweet from Human Centipede's @dieterlaser - he asked us to please not name a salad after him.
It's easy to lay off all the problems of "Batman And Robin" on Akiva Goldsman, but I wouldn't say it's accurate. And to his credit, he seems like he's aware of many of the issues, and I doubt we'll ever get a film that crazy out of him again as a result. But with other properties, he seems ready to dig in and actually treat them with a little love and respect. Maybe. He talks a good game, at least, and I am curious to see what the hell a Hollywood studio makes of "Lobo" if they ever actually say yes to making it.
I hadn't heard about the new Roger Corman/Joe Dante collaboration. And look... Dante's working with Corey Feldman again, too. Feldman's a lucky man if you consider his career between "The 'Burbs" and now.
Man, I love these. In particular, I adore that "Apocalypse Now" sticker. I'd give anything for those trading cards to be real.
You know what sucks?
That. That sucks. A lot. I'm sure I'd love the physical act of skiing, but the whole "die in an avalanche" thing seems like a high price to pay for six minutes of downhill fun.
Cory Doctorow is a guy who lives on the cutting edge of copyright law, constantly pushing to make the system work better for both audiences and artists, and I admire the hell out of him for the way he breaks new ground and works to make things better for other writers besides himself. He's got a new idea, and I'm curious to see how it plays out.
I love the work that Errol Morris does for The NY Times these days, and he just started a new seven-part series on fraud that you absolutely must check out.
And speaking of fraud, I took a lot of heat for voicing my disgust with the whole "Bubble Boy" thing as it was unfolding, and now that it's been proven to be a total fake, I hope the media takes this as a lesson that their voracious news cycle can lead them all to look like fools. In the meantime, I think this CNN clip sums it all up quite well:
Oh, I'm sorry... did I scare you? If so, blame my good friend Anthony Timpson, who is trying to give away $5000 right now. And since it's NZ currency, that translates into $748,477 US dollars. I think. At any rate, check out his contest now.
I wouldn't call the marketing of "Paranormal Activity" a fraud, but I do think there's a wee bit of smoke-and-mirrors going on, and it's all very clever. I just wonder about smart reporters who swallow a story whole these days, ESPECIALLY when it comes from the publicity department of a studio. Dude, they are publicists. They are expected to use every trick in the book, and the ones at Paramount are about as smart as anyone in the business. I'm glad to see that some reporters, at least, maintain a healthy degree of skepticism. As they should.
If this is viral marketing, can someone tell me what it's for? And if it's not, then can someone please help me build a panic room because I'm so deeply freaked out?
If you'd really like to be freaked out, check out this NSFW gallery of original horror images by photographer Joshua Hoffine, who will be sent a bill from my therapist any day now.
Is it really 5:00 in the afternoon? I have a feeling I'll be cleaning out the browser little by little all week, but if I don't publish now, this won't be up today at all.
Plenty of time this week to get through all of this, and plenty of good issues to get into in the days ahead.
The Morning Read appears here every day, Monday through Friday. Except when it doesn't.
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