Links of the week, 9/16/2011

For the first time this year, it feels like autumn in New York, which is lovely because autumn is the most beautiful season here. To celebrate, here are my links for the week.

  • Sean was on a West Wing kick a while back, so I caught part of the episode in which the fictional Organization of Cartographers for Social Equality blows C.J.’s mind comparing the Mercator and Peters projections, and even though I think Aaron Sorkin forces C.J. to be entirely too dense about the matter (not unusual, by the way—still not a fan of Sorkin), I love the idea of geeky, crusading cartographers. Anyway, The Awl published an article on map projections this week referencing the West Wing episode and delving even further into what really is a fascinating issue.
  • Slate‘s ranking of Steven Soderbergh’s movies is pretty good—especially because writer Dan Kois rightfully classifies the sexy, stylish, marvelously suspenseful Out of Sight as a masterpiece.
  • Lynne Ramsay’s grim but beguiling debut film Ratcatcher; Lionel Shriver’s propulsive, pitch-black novel We Need to Talk About Kevin; and the intense, brilliant actor Tilda Swinton are all strangely enthralling, so I’ve been looking forward for ages to Ramsay’s adaptation of Shriver’s novel starring Swinton. Roger Ebert’s interview with Swinton further whets my appetite for what looks to be a deeply unsettling yet mesmerizing movie.
  • Composer Nico Muhly’s post on the trouble composers have in obtaining recordings of performances of their own work sheds light on an obscure but real injustice in the music world. (Via The Awl.)
  • When it came out a few months ago, the driving, intense trailer for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo almost made me want to see the American version of a film I definitely didn’t enjoy—it’s that good. And the new Muppets parody of it both teases and celebrates what makes it so distinctive, which makes the Muppet version pretty damn good as well.

3 Replies to “Links of the week, 9/16/2011”

  1. The article on map projections was very interesting and informative – I had no idea of the issues involved! I guess the only way to completely solve the problem is to always use a flat map in conjunction with an actual globe. Thanks for the link!

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  2. We saw the trailer for “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” when we were at the theater to see “Contagion.” Even before I knew what movie the trailer was advertising, I was thinking, “This is a great preview – the visuals, the music, the editing all combine to be involving without telling you too much.” Then I saw the title and remembered your link to it here. That made me feel good that I had had the same reaction as you! I also don’t want to actually see the movie, but I must say I appreciated the trailer. And then I watched the Muppets’ take-off on it which was very clever and fun!

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  3. It really is a great trailer, isn’t it? No cheesy narration, no laying out of the entire damn plot, no generic soundtrack that’s been used in a dozen other trailers—just an extremely well-edited mood-setter with the fabulously audacious “feel-bad movie of Christmas” tagline. Not every movie could get away with that last bit, of course, but I truly do think more movies should get trailers like this, that rely more on showing you what the movie will be like, as an experience, rather than spelling out the first two-thirds of the story and giving away every good punch line and special effect in the whole thing.

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