Archive for the ‘Movies and tv’ Category

Uri and Avi

January 22, 2019

Uri and Avi
Sitting in a tree
K-I-S-S-I-N-G!

The US/UK children’s chant — meant to embarrass the kids named in it –realized in this photo of an Israeli Jew I’ve called Uri and a Palestinian Muslim I’ve called Avi (not sitting in a tree, but standing flagrantly in public):

(#1)

The photo came to me from Michael Nieuwenhuizen, who found it (unsourced) on Facebook and was moved by it (as was I), as a depiction of men kissing openly and as a depiction of romantic attachment across the boundaries of race and religion — doubly transgressive, and for gay men like Mikkie and me, doubly satisfying.

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Squirrely

January 22, 2019

On the serious side, yesterday was Martin Luther King Jr. Day, while on the silly side, it was Squirrel Appreciation Day.


(#1) Get Squirrely (also distributed as A.C.O.R.N.S.: Operation Crack Down and Voll Auf Die Nuss) is an American animated film produced by John H. Williams (through Vanguard Animation) and Dan Krech and directed by Ross Venokur. Released on November 4, 2016 [voices by Jason Jones, Will Forte, John Leguizamo, Samantha Bee, Victoria Justice, John Cleese, Jim Cummings] (Wikipedia link)

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Annals of indirection

January 1, 2019

Chip Dunham’s Overboard strip from December 28th:


(#1) Captain Crow and his dog Louie

An exercise in both syntax/semantics and semantics/pragmatics: on syntactic constructions and their semantics, and on the indirect conveying of meaning in context.

Above, what will become example (c) in the syntactic discussion:

(c) I don’t think I’ve told you today what a wonderful dog you are

which will lead to a related example, Sir Van Morrison’s song line in (d):

(d) Have I told you lately that I love you?

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News for penises: Bourdain’s Bhutan

December 28, 2018

(The title should be warning enough.)

Earlier today, I reported on Anthony Bourdain in Armenia on Parts Unknown, on this blog in “Yet another Switzerland”. Later in the series Bourdain and film director Darren Aronofsky moved on to Bhutan, in S11 E8 (first aired 6/24/18), where they encountered phalluses as a design element, almost everywhere. They also did a lot of eating and drinking, as here:

(#1)

And, being in a mostly Buddhist country, reflected on their places in the universe. But this is AZBlog, where the News for Penises is a regular feature, so that’s where we’re going. Fire up those phalluses.

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Yet another Switzerland

December 28, 2018

In Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown S11 E4 “Armenia” (first aired 4/20/18), he travels from the capital, Yerevan, to Lake Sevan, which he characterizes as “the Switzerland of Armenia”. Ah, yet another (metaphorical) Switzerland, indeed yet another (snowclonic) Switzerland of X.

In general, wherever you have alpine terrain, especially with snow, forests, lakes, and quaint villages, you have another Switzerland.

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Santa Paronomasia

December 25, 2018

Santa Paronomasia, the patron saint of punning, whose most recent appearance in these precincts was on the 22nd, in a posting about the Christmas shark movie — groan — Santa Jaws. Time for a round of Santa Claus puns.

(Some sexual joking.)

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Santa Jaws

December 22, 2018

(Minimal linguistic content. But it’s certainly seasonal.)

I have an admitted fondness for cheesy shark movies (which is almost all shark movies). But I don’t think I’ve been sufficiently clear about my distaste for almost all Christmas movies; I have a low tolerance for sentimentality. I recently re-watched Love Actually as an exercise in MST3K-style snark, which entertained me, but still left me sad that so many accomplished and engaging actors should have become enmeshed in the thing. (Yes, I know, the movie is wildly popular.)

The seasonal-sentiment component of today’s Christmas movie, Santa Jaws (a 2018 release on the Syfy Channel), is relatively small, and its preposterous-premise component is extraordinarily high (better to read the plot summary first, to get your guffaws out of the way ahead of time), but then cheesy shark movies as a genre have preposterous premises and incredible plots, so I can tell you that within the constraints of the genre this flick is well-done, with nice performances from the cast.

(#1)

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For the season: from fish to moose, penguin intervention

December 22, 2018

First, season’s greetings from the person responsible for “Hippo Birdie Two Ewe(s)!”. Then, a duplicitous stop-motion animation penguin bearing gifts.

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Ask not for whom the reaper scythes

December 20, 2018

Two Grim Reaper memic cartoons: today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro collab, and a Harry Bliss cartoon in the current (12/24&31) New Yorker, both requiring signficant background information for understanding (beyond recognizing the figure of Death with his scythe):

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The Swiss diaspora: Steinlen in Montmartre

December 18, 2018

From Wikipedia:


(#1) Steinlen poster of 1896 advertising the Montmartre cabaret Le Chat Noir

Théophile Alexandre Steinlen (November 10, 1859 – December 13, 1923), was a Swiss-born French Art Nouveau painter and printmaker. Born in Lausanne [in Canton Vaud in Francophone Switzerland], Steinlen studied at the University of Lausanne before taking a job as a designer trainee at a textile mill in Mulhouse in eastern France.

He then found his spot, the place that suited him in life: the Montmartre district of Paris.

And became Swiss French (in the narrow sense): a French person who emigrated from Switzerland. Narrowly Swiss French, in the way that distinguished 19th-century scientist Louis Agassiz was narrowly Swiss American: from my 2/7/13 posting “Swiss American”:

Agassiz was Swiss American in the narrow sense; he emigrated from Neuchâtel (in Francophone Switzerland) to Boston and took American citizenship.

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