Saturday Links

While I wait for page proofs of my book to arrive, I’m in the process of looking ahead to a couple of future research projects.  I have a couple of projects in mind, including one focusing on various modes of documentary filmmaking in the Bush era, so hopefully I’ll be able to address some of those ideas here soon in the weeks ahead.  But I’m mulling over a couple of other ideas as well, some of them reflected in todays links:

  • Scott Kirsner has a link to a Wall Street Journal article on interactive videos.  Now that YouTube is allowing embedded links, there are a number of opportunities for thinking about creating interactive narratives, much like the “Barack, Paper, Scissors” game I mentioned a few days ago.  Scott singles out The Time Machine as an interesting case study, and Ill try to write more about it, once Ive had time to review it.
  • The latest entrant in the ongoing debate over the “relevance” of film critics, this time a MoviesOnline discussion of a CNN report.  What’s interesting to me about these debates is not the “relevance” issue, although I think there should be room for paid professional critics on most newspaper staffs.  I’m more interested in the lack of a clear language for talking about critics now that bloggers and internet forums have begun to flourish.  CNN’s somewhat clunky term, “traditional critics” to describe professional newspaper critics is an illustration of the difficulty of coming up with a new language here, especially given that so much blog-based criticism looks like “traditional” criticism in the best sense of that term.  Both pieces are well worth checking out, if you’re interetsed in that sort of thing.
  • Pamela Cohn has a terrific interview with Sky Sitney, the Director of Programming for Silverdocs (which I’d love to attend this year).  Sitney has a lot to say about the new world of festival programming in the era of digital distribution.  In addition to finding fascinating subjects, Pamela, as usual, is aksing somereally valuable questions.  Ive been finding myself thinking about the changing role of festivals quite a bit lately, especially after all of the recent discussions at Sundance, and this interview is a thoughtful contribution to that ongoing conversation.
  • There’s a new post up at the Rutgers University Press blog on Luke and Jennifer Reynolds’ collection of essays, Dedicated to the People of Darfur: Writings on Fear, Risk, and Hope.  Here’s a little background on the Reynolds’ story (note: my book will be published in July by Rutgers).
  • MovieMaker Magazine has another contribution to the growing literature on self-distribution, this time from Jeffrey Goodman.
  • The Guardian’s Danny Leigh joins the growing backlash against Mumblecore films, one that he sees as generationally marked, a problem correctly diagnosed by Karina as “crank old man-ism.”  I’ll admit that some Mumblecore films leave me feeling a little cold, but like Karina, I’m skeptical of the dismissive anti-new technology stances taken by many of Mumblecores major critics. Worth noting: Glen Kenny’s been blogging up a storm about why he’s not a Mumblecore fan (here and here).
  • Lisa Spiro has an incredibly thorough post on Digital Humanities scholarship in 2008. She points to a number of posts defining digital humanities and others that map out the modes of collaboration developed by digital humanities scholars.  Good stuff.
  • Agnes Varnum also has a thoughtful post on the IFC/SXSW announcement that films from SXSW will be available on-demand from IFC during the festival, responding in part to Tom Hall’s similarly thoughtful post on the issue.  My quick reaction is to agree with a number of their key points, including Agness observation that the trend right now is have content available simultaneously in as manyformats as possible.  The “sky is falling” panic over day-and-date, back when Mark Cuban and Steven Soderbergh launched Bubble just over three years ago, now seems like a conversation from a much different era, for better or worse (and for those of us not living in urban centers, my feeling is that the new situation is much better).

1 Comment »

  1. Cinephage Said,

    February 7, 2009 @ 8:33 pm

    [...] from bloggers? What separates the two? Writing ability? Access? Professionalism?Chuck Tryon addresses this lack of clear language, pointing out that “so much blog-based criticism looks like [...]

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