Tuesday, September 25, 2007

2nd Quadrant 10/01 '07

The Approval Matrix: Week of October 1, 2007

Chopin's "Raindrops" in Halo 3 Ad

Jim Sturgess

Rebecca Murray of About.com wrote that Jim Sturgess [a British actor] is sure to win over a lot of female fans with his starring role as Jude in Across the Universe, the wild, imaginative movie musical directed by Julie Taymor and co-starring Evan Rachel Wood and Joe Anderson.

Plot Summary for Across the Universe: A dock worker Jude (Jim Sturgess) travels to America in the 1960s to find his estranged father. There he falls in love with sheltered American teenager Lucy (Evan Rachel Wood). When her brother Max (Joe Anderson) is drafted to fight in the Vietnam War, they become involved in peace activism. The film title and main characters are named after various songs by The Beatles. (IMDb)


TimesSelect is Dead!

This is from an email I received from the Times concerning TimesSelect, which provided exclusive online access to Op-Ed columnists, The Archive, Web tools and more for a fee, but was free to college students, and professors:

Dear TimesSelect Subscriber,

We are ending TimesSelect, effective today.

The Times's Op-Ed and news columns are now available to everyone free of charge, along with Times File and News Tracker. In addition, The New York Times online Archive is now free back to 1987 for all of our readers.

Why the change?

Since we launched TimesSelect, the Web has evolved into an increasingly open environment. Readers find more news in a greater number of places and interact with it in more meaningful ways. This decision enhances the free flow of New York Times reporting and analysis around the world. It will enable everyone, everywhere to read our news and opinion - as well as to share it, link to it and comment on it.

We thank you for your support of TimesSelect, and hope you continue to enjoy The New York Times in all its electronic and print forms.

"Until Proven Innocent"

The book's website relates: In this ever-deepening American tragedy, Stuart Taylor Jr. and KC Johnson argue, law enforcement, a campaigning prosecutor, biased journalists, and left-leaning academics repeatedly refused to pursue the truth while scapegoats were made of these young men, recklessly tarnishing their lives.

The story harbors multiple dramas, including the actions of a DA running for office; the inappropriate charges that should have been apparent to academics at Duke many months ago; the local and national media, who were so slow to take account of the publicly available evidence; and the appalling reactions of law enforcement, academia, and many black leaders.

Until Proven Innocent is a stunning book. It recounts the Duke lacrosse case in fascinating detail and offers, along the way, a damning portrait of the institutions—legal, educational and journalistic—that do so much to shape contemporary American culture.”
--Abigail Thernstrom, Wall Street Journal

Martha Graham Dance Company turned 80?

In researching this topic I found a source from the Times, and from the Village Voice that states that the Martha Graham Dance Company turned 80 last year.

Graham, Martha, b. Allegheny, Pa., 1894; d. 1991. Innovative modern dancer and choreographer. Graham studied with the dancer-choreographers Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn from 1916-23 and also danced in New York revues. She founded her company in 1926, and gained attention for her innovative choreography and magnetic dancing. Among her best-known solos was Lamentation (1930); well-known group dances included Primitive Mysteries (1931) and Appalachian Spring (1944). From the 1950's through the end of her career, Graham turned to Greek myth and biblical stories for inspiration. She won numerous awards, including a Kennedy Center Honor in 1979. (The New York Times)

"Shining at the Bottom of the Sea"

Corey Redekop of Shelf Monkey's review of the book states that the Canadian author’s [Stephen Marche] second novel, "Shining at the Bottom of the Sea," documents the Island of Sanjania, “an invisible dot in the middle of the North Atlantic.” Sanjanians, in the words of one of its leading writers, “are perhaps the most literary people on earth…bookstalls are as common as fruit stands…on Sanjair flights the stewards push small carts of books down the aisle after the beverages and pretzels.”

Yet rather than simply set a story in this fictional country, Marche sets himself the challenge of anthologizing the many varied works of fiction in Sanjania’s history, exploring the country’s past through its pamphlets, short stories, and novels. Marche, in his role as editor, is perplexed that Sanjanian writing is essentially ignored in the world, especially as authors such as George Orwell praise Sanjanian pamphlets as “[reminding] me of a childhood I never had.”

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