Saturday Night Links

Taking a break from working on the book to point out a couple of useful/interesting links:

  • First, Jason Mittell points to an important new document produced by the Society for Cinema & Media Studies on the issues of copyright and fair use as it effects our activity as academics.  The document, SCMS Best Practices for Fair Use in Teaching, is available from the SCMS homepage and well worth checking out.
  • Second, a quick pointer to a new John Edwards video highlighting a contest his campaign sponsored, in which the winners were given the opportunity to work with Edwards to help rebuild a section of New Orleans damaged by Hurricane Katrina.  The video generally succeeds in depicting Edwards as someone who is deeply concerned about the rebuilding efforts there, and at the very least, serves as an important reminder that in New Orleans, there is still a lot of work yet to be done.

By the way, I happened to catch the high-concept indie film, Lars and the Real Girl, last night at the Cameo and found it a little too quirky for its own good.   The basic concept, which features a delusional Lars purchasing a  somewhat life-like doll from a website and treating it as if it was a real person, was treated with a careful balance of humor and pathos, especially as members of the community seek to assist Lars’ family in preserving his delusion.  But like Manohla Dargis, I found the film a little too calculated overall, almost Capra-esque in its desire for small-town community.  I’d write a longer review, but I promised myself I’d do a lot of work on the book tonight.

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