- All Hail the Defiant Fictional Weirdness of Queen by Robert Repino at Tor.com – An exploration of the use of Queen’s music in science fiction films, and science fiction themes in Queen’s music. He left out Freddie Mercury’s contributions to the soundtrack album for the 1986 West End science fiction musical Time, which was a sort of Dr. Who-ish thing involving Dave Clark, Cliff Richard, David Cassidy, and the videotaped head of Laurence Olivier.
- “LiveJournal represents social media without borders” – Discussion on Metafilter of the implications of LiveJournal’s servers physically moving to Russia. Tl;dr: This probably affects Russian users more than North American users, but it has caused a steady stream of people to port their accounts over to Dreamwidth.
- “Fish and Brewis is the dish that Newfoundlanders yearn…” – Great piece on a national dish and its World War I history by Larry Dohey at Archival Moments.
- I participated in the local March Against Hate on MLK Day that the Village Voice profiles in “A March Against Hate Shows Bay Ridge Grappling with Trump’s America”. It was pretty positive.
- Philip Kennicott at the Washington Post reported on the apparently deliberately offensive choice of 19th-century American painting by George Caleb Bingham to serve as an inaugural backdrop.
Yesterday I saw the program of Oscar-nominated animated shorts, playing through Thursday at BAM. An absolute delight.. My favorite was Bear Story, a poignant allegory about human rights abuses in Chile as experienced by mechanical circus animals. The cages/prisons and keepers/killers were horrifying.
A very close second favorite was a cheerful Russian meditation on connection and grief, We Can’t Live without Cosmos.
I also liked Sanjay’s Super Team, about the spirituality of superheroes, but of course that was great because it was Pixar.
There were a couple of French shorts wherein the fur of the animated animals was so lifelike that it was actually a bit creepy, well into the uncanny valley.
Apart from the animated shorts, I’ve only seen two of the Oscar-nominated films this year. I thought Spotlight, while solid, was a little boring; newspaper procedurals are mostly interesting by contrast to how much less real reporting happens nowadays. I thought they did a good job capturing Boston of that era. The Force Awakens was a great Star Wars movie, but it’s only nominated for effects/design-type awards, not for the biggies.