Political Cinema After Politics -
Me, on Angelos Koutsourakis, on Lars von Trier:
‘What can I say? I understand Hitler,’ said Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier, at a press conference during the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, where his film Melancholia was screened for competition. As he stutters on, describing how he can ‘see Hitler in his bunker’ despite his having done ‘some wrong things,’ identifying himself as a Nazi while insisting that he is ‘not against Jews,’ Melancholia’s star, Kirsten Dunst, shifts uncomfortably in her chair, rolling her eyes, laughing nervously. ‘Oh my god,’ she audibly mutters, ‘this is terrible.’
"To be clear, my issues with this video do not lie in the fact that rape is a theme represented. What I do have a problem with is the way that it is represented––as an accepted practice, presented uncritically, and seemingly without comment".
The following is a response by San Diego local, Justine Marzoni, to an ever disturbing and rape-normalizing video, “Always Two”. If you love rape culture, you’ll LOVE this new video by San Diego’s local (and fairly popular) band, The Silent Comedy. I encourage you to watch and to let your emotions fuel your action towards ensuring the removal of this video’s existence in the public sphere. TRIGGER WARNING for those sensitive to Rape (and lets be honest, I wish we all were). Thank you so much for writing this, Justine. You can watch the video and view the letter directly below.
Morrissey and Melancholia (Spoiler Alert: He’s Still Miserable) | The New York Observer -
In which I destroy one of my idols…
The hobgoblins strike at my teeth
As the recyclables flail with emotions
And the bicycles fly through the air
After a night with Jameson’s
And the camera excites the little girls
Who sing to the cherry trees even though
No one is actually listening
But no one cares, no one knows
How I can sit here for hours and hours
Waiting for something to happen
But nothing ever does, except a bathroom break
Every now and then.
"Artists are nourished by each other more than by fame or by the public, I’ve always thought. To give one’s work to the world is an experience of peculiar emptiness. The work goes away from the artist into a void, like a message stuck into a bottle and flung into the sea. Criticism is crushing and humiliating. Pollock was hailed as a genius by the time he died, but could he have forgotten the widely repeated witticism that his paintings could have been done by a chimpanzee? As for praise, somehow it falls short, empty superlatives. The true artist knows the pitfalls of vanity. Dangerous to let go of one’s anxiety. But did you understand? must always be the question. To like and admire is not enough: did you understand? And will you understand the next thing I do—the wet canvas in my studio, the page I left in my typewriter? Unreasonably, the artist would like to know this, too. Praise has to do with the past, the finished thing; the unfinished is the artist’s preoccupation.”
—Joyce Johnson, Minor Characters (1983)
They all went to the movies on Forty-second Street that night and saw I Vitteloni, a film about a gang of rootless young men in Rome. Lafcadio, according to Leo, thought it was about New York. — Joyce Johnson, Minor Characters (1983)
Dear Miley. I can’t stop listening to #GetItRight (great song, great message, great body), but maybe you need a quick grammar lesson. One particular line causes concern: “I been laying in this bed all night long.” Miley, technically speaking, you’ve been LYING, not LAYING, an irregular verb form that should only be used when there’s an object, i.e. “I been laying my tired booty on this bed all night long.” Whatever. I’m not the best lyricist, but you know what I mean. #Get It Right The Next Time. But don’t worry, even Faulkner messed it up. We all make mistakes, and surely this isn’t your worst misdemeanor. But also, Miley, did you know the tense here is also totally wrong. Surely you’ve heard of Present Perfect Continuous Tense (I HAVE BEEN LYING in this bed all night long [hopefully getting some beauty sleep?]). It’s a weird, equivocal, almost purgatorial tense, not quite present, not quite past, not quite here, not quite there. Somewhere in between. I feel that way all the time. It kind of sucks. But I have a feeling your “present perfect continuous” involves a lot more excitement than mine. Anyway, doesn’t that also sum up your career right now? Present. Perfect. Continuous. And Tense. Intense? Girl, you work it like Mike Tyson. Miley, I love you because you’re the Queen, grammatically and anatomically speaking. And you’re the hottest cake in the pan. Don’t ever grow old. Live brightly before your fire fades into total darkness. XXOO Sufjan