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Articles tagged with: Playtime

Cinema and Television, Nov/Dec 2009 »

Inviting Stare: In the City of Sylvia
[11 Dec 2009 | One Comment | 2,174 Views]
Inviting Stare: <i>In the City of Sylvia</i>

Strasbourg is a city in northeastern France, soaked in the history of Western civilization. It is older than the Julian calendar; it has changed hands and names, and it has been at the forefront of seismic shifts in culture and the site of some of humanity’s darkest moments. I’ve never been there, and it strikes me as odd that Strasbourg is not a city that surfaces much in pop culture. In the context of Jose Luis Guerin’s In the City of Sylvia, the most incredible contextual reference to Strasbourg to me is that Strasbourg was the home of Johannes Gutenberg, the man who invented the printing press.

Cinema and Television, June 2009 »

[13 Jun 2009 | One Comment | 1,228 Views]
Action as Easy as <i>1 2 3</i>

Remakes (or in this case, second remakes) are handicapped from the get-go.  Playtime compatriot Daniel Swensen has already outlined the pitfalls of modern updates, and the new Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 falls in line on its tracks like the titular subway train. One can see the infinitely tense possibilities of the skeletal scenario of Morton Freedgood’s (alias John Godey’s) 1973 novel on which each movie has been based: four men hijack a NYC subway car and hold its passengers hostage; the head criminal has found a way to …

April 2009, Cinema and Television »

Yesterday’s Here: A trip to Adventureland
[15 Apr 2009 | 4 Comments | 1,498 Views]
Yesterday’s Here: A trip to Adventureland

Though something of a nostalgia trip, Adventureland never falls into the traps of over romanticizing or sentimentalizing a bygone era. Inspired by the events of his own post-adolescence in the 1980s, Greg Mottola writes and directs this surprisingly tender film about confused and loveless young adults. Though beginning on a similar note as many films of its type — a party where the protagonist, James, is introduced as a virgin — the film takes an unusual path from there. He returns home to find out his summer plans are dashed …

Art, February 2009, Skeptical Panda »

[12 Feb 2009 | 3 Comments | 3,805 Views]
Design! Three Ways of Looking at Love

Ah, Valentine’s Day.  Few holidays seem to raise the ire of internet denizens, brooding teenagers and twenty-something counter-culture warriors like good ole V-Day1.  Depending on your point of view, it’s either a cultureless wasteland of affected sentimentalism and crass commercial cash-ins or a special day for you and your beloved.  Then there are the rest of us: those of us who have experienced some sweet & thoughtful Valentine’s Days and remain effectively neutral on the holiday2.  We don’t quite understand those people who will wheedle dates, arrange extra weekend meetings, …

Cinema and Television, Oct/Nov 2008 »

[12 Nov 2008 | 2 Comments | 4,369 Views]
Melons! Hardcore Porn and Politics in The Wayward Cloud

A Review of Playtime’s Movie of the Month Discussion
This month’s film was The Wayward Cloud (2005), a controversial feature directed by Taiwanese Second New Wave director Tsai Ming-liang. Set in Taipei, it is a controversial meditation on sex and modern Chinese culture, mixing camp musical numbers, slow-paced, dialogue-free scenes and hardcore pornography.
The group were deeply divided on the merits of the film: while a couple of Playtimers thought it was a masterpiece, others were alienated by its deliberative pace, or horrified by the rape scene and its implications …