Friday, September 28, 2007


Leave it to the Wall Street Journal to rain on a fine parade. The emergence of MariƩ Digby on YouTube, as it turns out, was manufactured by the pros. (In any event, it's funny to see a record label stoop to low-tech marketing to attract new listeners.) The article can be read here: LINK.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Slight Corrective

Alright, alright, alright. For the sake of balance, I offer up an essay by Timothy Garton Ash, who takes a more nuanced view of "Lives." He speaks with some measure of authority, having been a target of the Stasi himself. Still doesn't change my overall reaction to the film, though.

The Sound of Music

Is there any doubt that "The Lives of Others," the German film by the wunderkind writer-director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, cannot be considered anything other than a masterpiece? (Okay, so the guy is in his early thirties, but if it hadn't taken so long to secure financing, he could have finished "Lives" much earlier.) The central scene in the movie revolves around a piece of music, "Sonata for a Good Man," which is played on a piano by one of the main characters, a playwright, upon hearing that his good friend, a black-listed theater director, offed himself. The piece -- haunting, powerful, direct -- holds its own, but the money shot is the camera slowly but steadily circling the other main character, a Stasi officer spying on the playwright's home with a pair of oversized earphones, which ultimately lands on the face of the character, upon which you spot an unmistakable tear. It is a simple moment, yet moving.

Monday, April 9, 2007

It's All About You

The Hitch delivers another fine essay: LINK

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Deep Thought #1

Some lazy Sunday afternoon thinking: we are all hostages to our own experiences.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

In Search of Lost Time

This week, Slate is running an interesting series featuring memoir writers. I think this one by the online magazine's chief political correspondent is particularly good. It's only four paragraphs long, but with economy and precision, the piece conveys a great deal of emotion. Take note of the piece's structure: it's the wave of the future with online pieces in terms of compressing material and revealing the Rosebud at the end in quick strokes. Wait, what am I saying? That future is now! LINK.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Political Mashup

A new breed of political ads.