Moving Pictures on a Friday

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Post title kind of says it all, really. Spider crabs en masse. Cool (rather than creepy, as the video calls it, if you ask me).

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Here we are, back with Moving Pictures on a Friday, because this caught my eye:

Not even sure I knew it was coming, to be honest. Maybe I did and then forgot. Either way … five things about it:

1) That’s one film that really didn’t need remaking, don’t you think? Not that that ever stops a remake nowadays, I guess. So fair enough. Have at it, Hollywood!

2) Denzel’s sporting some fine facial hair. Not as good as Yul’s bald pate, but at least a little bit eye-catching.

3) Chris Pratt is going to be in every big film from now on. Is that the plan? Because I like him a lot, but it’s starting to get hard to see him as anything other than CHRIS PRATT. Whatever character he’s playing is disappearing behind the fame that is CHRIS PRATT.

4) Looks rather like they might have one token good Native American and one token bad Native American.  I really, really hope they don’t play those tokens and then have them fight each other to the death, because if the good Native American’s purpose in the plot is to kill the bad Native American that’s just … well, it seems like a lousy idea, that’s all. Deeply last century.

5)  Have I mentioned that I wrote a book – The Free – partially inspired by The Magnificent Seven? Or, more accurately, inspired by the film M7 itself is a remake of: Seven Samurai.

Have I further mentioned that there are three e-novella prequels to The Free coming out this year? Oh, I have: all the details are here. Anyway, the first of those prequels is available right now, everywhere e-books are sold. It’s called Corsair, and it’s over 20,000 words of mayhem and formative character moments in a world where magic is dangerous, unpredictable and at best a double-edged sword. A little taste of my version of The Magnificent Seven!

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Breaking myself into renewed blogging gently with an easy Moving Pictures on a Friday post. Easy, because there’s sooo much to be said about this trailer and yet at the same time it completely and utterly speaks for itself, so I’ll just let it do that:

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Moving Pictures On A Friday. Offered without comment, this one, except to say – for those curious about the inner life of writers – that it touches (in, for once, a relatively positive and encouraging way) upon what, after family, friends and all that, I think engages and interests and impassions me the most. I tend to see the world in shades of grey, which makes my opinions on a great many things kind of complicated, not always that strongly held. Not so wildlife and the natural world. If you want to see me go all black and white and angry about something, what our one species has done and is still doing to the millions of others we “share” the planet with would be the place to start …

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So, this is pretty amazing if you ask me. British Pathé, the newsreel company that gave Britain its news for a big chunk of the 20th century has uploaded its entire archive to Youtube. 85,000 bits of vintage newsreel film, chronicling pretty much everything that anyone was chronicling anywhere.

Me, I think that’s pretty amazing. You can see any and all of it over at the British Pathé youtube channel, but honestly there’s so much stuff it’s impossible to know where to start. (Although I note, with slightly glum resignation, that the ‘popular uploads’ listing suggesting a lot of people are starting with clips of people dying. As you would, I suppose.)

Here’s an entirely random selection of clips in only one of which, so far as I know, anybody dies.

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Time for some Moving Pictures on a Friday and for no particular reason, I thought we’d all just spare a couple of minutes to admire Scotland. I mean, I do that all the time since it’s where I’m from and where I live, but the rest of you just get a couple of minutes …

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A long while back, I highlighted the lovely film A Day in the Life of a Fire Lookout by Gary Yost in a Moving Pictures on a Friday post. You never know who’s watching when you do internet stuff, of course, but in this case it turned out the film-maker himself was. So recently he dropped me a line to point me at a new film of his, which I’m happy to offer up for your consideration. It’s a collaboration between Yost and various other folks, including the actor Peter Coyote (whose fine voice you might recognise doing the narration).

Why am I happy to put it up here? Well, it’s a nice film, with some of the gorgeous and rather clever time-lapse stuff going on that made A Day in the Life of a Fire Lookout so pleasing to the eye. It’s got an environmental slant, which pleases me since that’s the kind of stuff I’ve spent much of my life involved with for both career and pleasure. It’s got a history and culture angle, too, which also pleases me since what happens when the natural world and human history and culture rub up against one another is one of my more lasting interests.

And it’s just plain interesting, if you ask me. The world is so complicated, so full of stories, that you could pick any piece of it, any time slice, any angle, and unravel a story encompassing huge bits of history, Nature, human experience. This is just one of those stories, I guess. And the views are gorgeous. Never been to Marin County (or California at all, for that matter), but it does look nice.

The Invisible Peak from Gary Yost on Vimeo.

More on Mount Tamalpais here, and more on Gary Yost here (give it a moment to load, and you’ll be rewarded with some nice phosots and films).

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This Friday, there’s only one thing I could put up as a Moving Pictures on a Friday post really:

1961, the fighter:

1994, the president:

2005, the smile, the twinkling eyes, the pervasive, subliminal generosity of spirit:

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Of all the imminently upcoming superhero movies, the one that’s putting the biggest anticipatory tingle into me? This one:

Very good trailer, but more importantly based on one of the very best Captain America stories ever produced in comics: Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting’s Winter Soldier. Problem is, if you haven’t read the original comics, it’s kind of hard to recommend doing so before seeing the movie since it’d torpedo the plot twists. Nevertheless, they’re 100% great superhero comics and this just might be a spectacularly fun movie.

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Our future robot overlords are in active development at Boston Dynamics.

(a) Cool. (b) Creepy? Just a little bit?

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