Olivier Assayas on Post-May 1968 France and Romanticizing Youth Rebellion

Yesterday evening, as part of the Festival Albertine, Olivier Assayas was sort of questioned about his films by a panel consisting of legendary music journalist Greil Marcus, Village Voice film critic Stephanie Zacharek, and screenwriter Larry Gross (We Don’t Live Here Anymore). Mostly, though, he was questioned about the atmosphere surrounding May ’68 — the attempted student revolution in Paris that Assayas didn’t really experience  — by the audience. … Read More

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Longform You Have to Read: Kathleen Hale’s Macabre Essays

In a world where you have more options for satisfying longform reading than ever, your friends here at Flavorwire are taking the time once a week to highlight some of the best that journalism and longform has to offer. Whether they’re unified by topic, publication, writer, being classic pieces of work, or just by a general feeling, these articles all have one thing in common: they’re essential reading. This week, we’re looking at the essays of Kathleen Hale. … Read More

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‘American Horror Story: Freak Show’ Season 4 Episode 2 Recap: “Massacres and Matinees”

The second chapter of Freak Show is here and with it, the not-unexpected “message” of this season is revealed: civil rights, equality, etc., etc. It’s a known problem in the American Horror Story series that Ryan Murphy clumsily grasps at big-message thematics only to toss them aside for another great murder spectacle or musical sequence. Perhaps this year will be different because of the innate “other”ing that happens to obvious “freaks.” But, perhaps not. This is American Horror Story, after all. … Read More

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Gone Girl, Bad Weather, and the D: Links You Need to See

Everyone’s content has been on point today, so I just want to thank y’all (y’all here being used in the feminist sense) for making today’s post really easy to write. Here’s what you need to read (or look at) from today’s internet goings-on. … Read More

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This Is Terrorism: Misogynist Shooting Threat Forces Anita Sarkeesian to Cancel Speech

Last night, feminist commentator Anita Sarkeesian had to cancel a planned talk at Utah State University after threats of a mass shooting surfaced. Sarkeesian, who talks, writes, and vlogs about gender in video games, has been targeted by these kinds of nasty misogynist threats for a long time. Her trolling and persecution mostly now comes from the #GamerGate conspiracy theorists — she even had to leave her home at one point. … Read More

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Staff Picks: Flavorwire’s Favorite Cultural Things This Week

Need a great book to read, album to listen to, or TV show to get hooked on? The Flavorwire team is here to help: in this weekly feature, our editorial staffers recommend the cultural object or experience they’ve enjoyed most in the past seven days. Click through for our picks, and tell us what you’ve been loving in the comments. … Read More

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“Why Doesn’t the America in Movies Look Like the America I Live In?”: Director Justin Simien on ‘Dear White People’ and Real Black Narratives on Film

Here’s a film pitch: A coming-of-age story about four college students coming to grips with their true identities despite peer pressure and parental influence, that culminates in a wild Halloween party gone awry. Sounds simple enough, right? It’s basically the premise of Superbad. What if the four students were black, though, and that Halloween party was actually a race party thrown by a group of white students attending the same university? Listen to the crickets chirp. … Read More

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On Activism and Cynicism: An Hour Waiting for Russell Brand in Zuccotti Park

I walked down to Zuccotti Park yesterday afternoon. I haven’t been there since Occupy Wall Street was forcibly removed from the park in November 2011. And, look, I’ll admit it — I never went to the park during Occupy, either. Like many people, I suspect, I’ve always had an uneasy relationship with activism — or, perhaps more accurately, with activists. Insofar as Occupy had defined goals (and one of the smartest and most interesting things about the movement was its inclusivity), I supported them — anyone who reads Flavorwire regularly will be unsurprised to know that we often lean left of center. But when it comes to direct action or marches or such things, I have always had a problem, and that problem has a name: drum circles. … Read More

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The State I Am In: Stuart Murdoch on Every Belle and Sebastian Album

Halfway through our phone call, Stuart Murdoch, sitting outside at Austin–Bergstrom International Airport, lets out an abrupt, “Oh wow,” followed by, “Oh goodness.” He breaks away momentarily. “There’s two little puppies here come to see me,” Murdoch finally declares. “That’s amazing. They’re just stretching their legs, they’ve been on a flight. Hi guys, hi guys.”

It would be easy to peg this as the most “Belle and Sebastian thing ever” in the context of an interview with the twee outfit’s frontman and main songwriter, but going through their 18-year discography, which was reissued on vinyl by Matador last week under the banner It Could Have Been A Brilliant Career, it becomes clear that there isn’t a perfect paradigm for Belle and Sebastian. Though it undercuts their influence, maybe Murdoch himself best summed it up in 1998’s “This Is Just a Modern Rock Song”: “This is just a modern rock song/ This is just a sorry lament/ We’re four boys in our corduroys/ We’re not terrific, but we’re competent!/ Stevie’s full of good intentions/ Richard’s into rock and roll/ Stuart’s staying in ’cause he thinks it’s a sin/ That he has to leave the house at all.”

With the Scottish group’s ninth album, Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, scheduled for January 20, looking back at their indie-pop gems makes sense at the moment. So that’s exactly what we did, going through each album with Murdoch’s color commentary. … Read More

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With ‘Fury,’ Brad Pitt Cements Himself as American Cinema’s Top Nazi Killer

David Ayers’ Fury opens on a battlefield pockmarked with the waste of war, charred bodies laid out in broken circles around burned-out tanks. It is quiet. There is a literal lack of color thanks to what seems to be an early morning fog. A Nazi riding a white horse strolls through the shot, surveying the seemingly lifeless landscape. He pauses in front of a Sherman tank, its cannon emblazoned with “FURY” in white paint. A figure emerges from within, jumps onto the man on horseback, and stabs him in the face. This is Brad Pitt’s Don “Wardaddy” Collier, and he means business. … Read More

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