The release of the latest, and allegedly last, installment in the “Skywalker Saga,” comprising the canonical triad of trilogies in the eternally expanding “Star Wars” universe, seems like an appropriate time to pose a wistful little thought experiment: What if “Star Wars” — the original 1977 film — had performed at the box office about as everyone expected, in the range of a ’70s Disney film, earning, say, $16 million? Let’s imagine that some film historian or revisionist critic circa 2019 were to rediscover this forgotten gem, an oddity of ’70s cinema buried among all the Watergate-paranoia thrillers, demonic horror films and disaster blockbusters.… Seguir leyendo »
Nota: Este archivo abarca los artículos publicados por el autor desde el 1 de agosto de 2007. Para fechas anteriores realice una búsqueda entrecomillando su nombre.
The only time art ever seems to make news here in the West anymore is when a Pollock or Warhol sells for a sum commensurate with the budget of a “Transformers” film. It seems bizarre, then, to find ourselves grappling with international crises in which art is the issue: the imbroglio involving the Sony movie “The Interview,” the massacre at Charlie Hebdo in Paris. The incomprehension, whether bemused or horrified, that we feel toward people who take up arms against the creators of cartoons or comedies is a chastening reminder that there are still cultures in which art is not a harmless diversion or commodity, but something real and volatile, a potential threat to be violently suppressed.… Seguir leyendo »
When I was 17, I took a record of John Cage’s piano pieces out of the library. The pieces were interesting, but what really arrested my attention was the B-side of the album — a work called “The Dreamer That Remains,” by a composer I’d never heard of named Harry Partch. This was music from another planet: unearthly yowling strings, metallic twangs, rippling liquid percussion. I couldn’t even identify the instruments.
I loaned the record to a friend of mine, the only other person in the world I then knew who liked classical music. The piece’s refrain, in which a chorus of corpses in a funeral home sing, “Let us loiter together/And know one another,” became a two-man in-joke between us.… Seguir leyendo »