Things of note for the week ending Friday 13th May, 2016.
In the week that brought us:
One has to wonder: how does anyone truly cope with it all?
Speaking of which: as you read this, I’ll be on holiday (again) – hurrah! – last one for the year mind, I think. Summer is coming and the heat in London really, truly is something I adore.
AND SPEAKING OF BRINGING IT.
It is time to bring you – THE THINGS!
1. THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE
Little known fact: one of my favourite documentaries of all time is a film called ‘LOST IN LA MANCHA‘.
For the uninitiated, LILM is the documentary of Terry Gilliam’s spectacular failure to make the film adaptation of ‘Don Quizote de la Mancha’.
“Director Terry Gilliam is the latest filmmaker to try and bring Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra‘s “Don Quixote de la Mancha” to the big screen, the movie to be called The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. Before filming even begins, Gilliam, who has moved from Hollywood studio to European financing, will have to scale back his vision as his budget has been slashed from $40 million to $32 million, still astronomical by European standards. But Gilliam is a dreamer, much like his title character, and his vision for the movie is uncompromising, meaning with the reduced budget that there is no margin for error and that some of his department heads may have to achieve miracles with their allotted moneys. During pre-production and actual filming, what Gilliam does not foresee is contractual and health issues with his actors, and the effects of Mother Nature. The question is does Gilliam have a Plan B if/when things go wrong.”
I saw it when it first came out (so what – 2002?) in a tiny arthouse cinema in Wales. It’s a long story as to how I found myself there but I’m glad I did because the film was wonderful. It really is quite amazing just how many things go wrong for Gilliam as he tries to bring his vision to life. As observers to this misfortune, the audience gets to not only see behind the scenes of what and how you make a movie (or not, in this case) but also witness the occasional finished scene (a younger Johnny Depp stars) to boot.
You should see it.
All that said: this is not the thing I want to tell you about.
What I wanted to tell you about was that somehow Gilliam has managed to reboot his project and the original ambition for the film has been reborn. With Adam Driver seemingly picking up where Johnny Depp left off, I’m already well up for seeing this (or the documentary sequel – either or works for me).
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2. ICE CREAM FOR
EVERYONE // ME
A couple of editions ago I recommended to you all go and start listening to the podcast known as ‘ICE CREAM FOR EVERYONE’. At that time, I also mentioned that I’d recorded an episode with the host of said audio program and that you should look out for it over the coming weeks.
WELL LOOK NO MORE!
Episode 25, featuring yours truly, is out now!
Now look, I’m not assuming for one second that you’re sat there staring at your screen thinking ‘Oh my God! MORE content from James Whatley! YES!’ – however, I must say: I really, really enjoyed this conversation.
I’ll be honest, given Willem‘s background in communications strategy, I’d primed myself for an hour of strategic mental gymnastics about what makes advertising matter etc… But that’s not what happened. Instead, Willem asked me about all the different things he’d come to know about me in the 7 or 8 years we’ve known each other and, well, it was thoroughly enjoyable.
PS. If you like the show, let Willem know – he’s on Twitter as @HippoWill.
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3. JAMES BOND + RADIOHEAD + STAR WARS = ?
Thanks to Felicity for this one.
What happens when you cross James Bond’s [cancelled] Radiohead theme with an amazing re-take of the opening credits of THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK?
Well, why not find out?
I must admit, you get these kinds of things quite often out on teh interwebz but this one really stood out as something that should be worth sharing.
4. SPIES LIKE US
I’m somewhere in the air over Munich and I’ve just finished reading this Guardian feature. The headline in the above image says it all really.
It is easily the best thing in this week’s FToF by far.
5. MARVEL FILMS
In last week’s edition I mentioned that CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR is probably in my top three all time favourite Marvel films. My good friend, Scott Gould, emailed me and ask me how I’d rank all of them. I couldn’t help but take the bait…
Here is THE definitive* list of the best Marvel (and we’re only talking MCU here), ranked:
- CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER
- AVENGERS: ASSEMBLE
- CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR
- GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
- IRON MAN
- AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON
- CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
- THOR: THE DARK WORLD
- IRON MAN 3
- IRON MAN 2
- THE INCREDIBLE HULK
Disagree? Tell me. Comment on the blog, tweet at me, or just reply to the email (if you get this as an email).
I want to hear from you.
Bonuses this week are either MENTAL or PROVOCATIVE.
- Bonus 1: A folding robot made of pig parts can remove batteries from stomachs with magnets.
- Bonus 2: Scientists declare that octopuses are basically aliens – (not kidding).
- Bonus 3: Video views as a metric are basically 100% BS.
- Bonus 4: Jed is blogging again – (good read, this).
- Bonus 5: NASA casually announced 1200+ new planets.
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Right, the weekend is here. I’m on holiday.
I’m outta here.
*And by definitive, I mean COMPLETELY AND UTTERLY DEFINITIVE.