September 24, 2015
This year at Burning Man I got to fulfill my desire to participate in a monkey chant. The monkey chant is also known as "Kecak". The monkey chant is taught Monday through Thursday at HeeBee GeeBee Healers and then on Friday they do a big monkey chant in Center Camp. I was unable to make it to the big event on Friday because that's when we host our party at Burner Buddies. The chant requires a lot of physical activity as well as mental alertness as the changes come unpredictably.
Here's a longish video of the monkey chant in Center Camp in 2014. It's not too different from practice chants done earlier in the week. I suppose they expect a lot of newbies to join the chant, so some of what you see is teaching the chant. The action begins to pick up after the 4 minute mark.
Ideally, we would have made it look like something created by Hollywood choreographers, like this scene from The Fall which is possibly the most beautiful movie ever made.
August 24, 2015
Thunderdome In Spherical Virtual Reality
This is the best video for conveying the atmosphere of Thunderdome. You can scroll around, up and down, while the video is running. And that's Thunderdome. Too bad they didn't get them chanting "Two may enter, one may leave." And while we're wishing for that, how come Tina Turner has never come to Burning Man and put in an appearance at the Thunderdome?
Obviously, a lot of stuff at Burning Man was inspired by the earlier Mad Max films, but the most recent Mad Max seemed to be inspired by Burning Man.
This is not the latest Mad Max. This was made from Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome.
August 5, 2015
June 8, 2015
John Waters at RISD
March 19, 2015
An excerpt from the new documentary Breaking Point.
Silly Californians. I first heard of the Salton Sea in the 1960s when the highly educational The Monster That Challenged The World was broadcast on channel 9 in Kansas City. I thought "Salton Sea" was a ridiculous fictional name made up for the movie. Click here to watch the mandatory "punishing the sinners" scene that appears in every horror movie which was shot on location at the Salton Sea. Young Jody will never disrespect her mother again. One might bear in mind that this preceded Jaws by 18 years.
March 3, 2015
Stay Over At Leonardo DiCaprio's Place
The Dinah Shore house (by Donald Wexler) that was purchased by Leonardo DiCaprio can be rented starting at $4,500. Here's where you can make your reservations and learn all about the house.
The Google map view.
February 22, 2015
Kirk Cameron's Big Night
The film has achieved the remarkable distinction of a 0% critics' rating on RottenTomatoes. Even the user reviews put it at only 31% approval.
On Metacritic, the numbers are different: 18% critics' rating (which is better), but only 1.6 (out of 10, IOW 16%) from ordinary viewers. All of the 5-star reviews from viewers sound like they were written by the same person, as they call claim radical transformations of the viewer. Like this one:
ATHEISTS: when you go to see this movie, do NOT go with your preconceived notions about Christianity. I went with mine and, well....I can in all honesty...they were utterly shattered. Kirk Cameron's speech to Christian in the car is so moving, so compelling, so convicting...I was brought to my knees in a moment of cognitive dissonance in which I ultiamately renounced my atheism because of an overwhelming desire to surrender my life to Jesus. I'm serious, guys. This film changed my life. And I really can;t say that about any other films.
Amazing. All these centuries of searching for the magic cure for atheism only to discover it in a really bad American movie. Makes you wonder why there aren't any good movies that shatter atheism.
February 9, 2015
Cuba Gets Netflix
Yes, genuine, real streaming Netflix. Only $8/month, so the only challenge for a Cuban to overcome is finding eight U.S. dollars every month. Maybe this deal will serve mostly foreign diplomats and visitors to Cuba.
"[P]eople in Cuba with Internet connections and access to international payment methods will be able to subscribe to Netflix." Yeah. Just your average Cuban citizen.
January 8, 2015
"Brokeback Mountain" Shirts
These are the very shirts (and photo and closet door, for all I know) from Brokeback Mountain on display in the Autry National Center in Griffith Park. The shirts are on loan. Here's a video of the ceremony when the shirts went on display.
For those who are asking themselves "Huh? Shirts?" (and I know there are at least a couple) here are some videos to help. I'm trying to avoid "spoilers" for the benefit of those who think the enjoyment of a story is less because you've finished it.
Here is the end of the movie where we see the shirts just as they are displayed in the museum. Technically, it's not a spoiler, but if you have even just a single crumb of human empathy you can tell what happened before that scene.
If you're still all like "huh?" here's the beginning of the shirt story. Sometimes a fight is just a fight. This is not a fight.
If you still don't get it, then here's a third clip showing the convergence of the shirts. Technically not a spoiler in my book.
If you need yet more clarification, it's time for you to go see the movie. Netflix has it on disc, but not streaming. But it is available for streaming on Amazon.