This summer certainly hasn't lacked for reading material. In last month alone, we've seen new issues of Film Comment (in which Paul Brunick points us to a slew of blogs to keep up with), Jump Cut (a book-length whopper), Senses of Cinema, Sight & Sound (and here's a peek at the cover of next month's issue) and Filmmaker (and editor Scott Macaulay has begun looking back at the earliest issues, too) as well as updates to Criticine and the launch of Camera Lucida.
Now selections from the Summer 2010 issue of Film Quarterly have gone up, including editor Rob White on Roman Polanski's The Ghost Writer and Michael Haneke's The White Ribbon; Joshua Clover's "Remarks on Method" (e.g., "films that are explicitly about film must be understood in the first instance as meditations on the situation of the real global empire to which cinema belongs"); Jonathan Rosenbaum's report on this year's SXSW; and Nina Power on Edition Filmmuseum's newish release of Dziga Vertov's A Sixth Part of the World (1926) and The Eleventh Year (1928), which "serves to remind us of just how astonishing cinema can be, and how inappropriate our usual cinematic categorizations — comedy, romance, documentary — are when it comes to directors (or 'author leaders,' as these films have it) like Vertov — whose vision, it should not be forgotten, cannot be easily disentangled from the work of Elizaveta Svilova, his wife and editor, and of Michail Kaufman, his brother and cameraman." A related (and recommended) browse would be the Austrian Film Museum's Dziga Vertov Collection.
With Marco Bellocchio's Sorelle Mai screening out of competition at Venice next month, I'd thought I'd note that the current issue of Cargo features a hefty interview with the 70-year-old director, so if you read German, you may well want to order a copy from the site.
The cover of the current issue of the New York Times Magazine is up there for two reasons. First, I simply find the shot, by Hendrik Kerstens, rather amazing — there really is such a thing as porcelain skin. And secondly, because Frank Bruni's profile of Laura Linney is the sort of long magazine feature which has been declared dead or dying but which might also find its resurrection in e-readers such as the iPad and the Kindle.
Kevin Kelly's been reminding us just how great this form can be by maintaining a list of "The Best Magazine Articles Ever" (and as far as I can tell, he's still taking recommendations). There aren't too many celebrity profiles on that list; in fact, sports figures aside, there is but one, Gay Talese's "Frank Sinatra Has a Cold" for the April 1966 issue of Esquire, and that one, of course, is one of the first anti-celebrity profiles. At any rate, Kevin Kelly's list is definitely one recommended browse. I found it via Jason Kottke and, funny enough, Rebecca Mead's profile of him and Meg Hourihan for the New Yorker (November 13, 2000 — ten years ago!) is featured on the list. One more quick note: Kevin Kelly used to be an editor at Wired, which currently has one of the most widely praised apps for the iPad. Today, Lucia Moses reports for Media Week that Wired will be "producing original short films" for that app — hopefully while carrying on publishing the long-form journalism it's known for.
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