primer

Video Essay: “How Time Travel Works”

About halfway through Looper, Rian Johnson’s electrifying new time travel actioner, Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who play the same man thirty years apart, sit at a diner and try to hash out their situation. The younger version of “Joe” starts asking questions about how his actions will affect his elder version, particularly now that they’re both in the same place, but before that conversation can get anywhere, Willis shuts it down: “If we start talking about it, we’re gonna be here all day, talking about it, makin’ diagrams with straws.”

It’s a fair point: it seems like every time travel movie — and there are plenty of them — is required to throw in a scene where some egghead tosses around a lot of jargon about the “space-time continuum” or something in order to explain how time travel works. Other movies keep it simpler: “This is what makes time travel possible: the flux capacitor!” Whatever your preference, we’ve pulled clips from over two dozen time travel movies to present this month’s video essay, “How Time Travel Works.” Check it out after the jump. … Read More

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An Introduction to the Works of H.P. Lovecraft

Howard Philips Lovecraft was born at home on August 20th, 1890, at 454 Angell Street in Providence, Rhode Island. He was a lanky, lonely child who suffered from a family history of depression, resulting in a nervous breakdown as a teenager. He never completed high school, though he was an incredible autodidact in the years to come, and was able to write some of the most bizarre and enduring “cosmic horror” novels in history that influenced a slew of writers as well as musicians like Mark E. Smith from the Fall and the guys from Rudimentary Peni (unsavory Brits apparently love the stuff). We’ve taken a few of his books from the pile in order to introduce you to the man that Stephen King called “the 20th century’s greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.” So read on, dear readers, and tell us what Lovecraft novels you love the most. … Read More

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