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by Matt Mazur

27 Jul 2010

First Film: The French actresses’ first international breakthrough success was in Claude Gorgetta’s 1977 The Lacemaker, but she had been working steadily since 1971

Must-see: A trio of amazing work with Claude Chabrol: The Story of Women (1998); Madame Bovary (1991); and La ceremonie (1995)

Star Turn: Huppert’s complex, depraved Erika Kohut in The Piano Teacher for Michael Haneke was unanimously voted Best Actress at Cannes in 2001.

Underrated: Violette, another Chabrol film, this time from 1978, which tied Huppert for the Best Actress prize at Cannes with Jill Clayburgh’s iconic turn in An Unmarried Woman (Paul Mazursky)

Upcoming, Current and/or Recent: Huppert just appeared, of all places, on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit opposite Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni and Sharon Stone. Think about that. Her next film is White Material for French auteur Claire Denis (Beau Travail)

by G. Christopher Williams

27 Jul 2010

Rockstar Games is currently featuring a live version of “Far Away”, a familiar track to players of Red Dead Redemption.  The video features Jose Gonzalez performing the song on the rooftop of Rockstar’s offices.

It is still just as haunting a tune, even without the digital tumbleweeds of New Austin to accompany it.

by PopMatters Staff

27 Jul 2010

Detroit’s Alex Winston may live in the indie world of the Arcade Fire, Lykke Li, and Feist in terms of immediate musical compatriots, but Winston is also a classically trained opera singer. That’s immediately from her expansive vocal range, as well as her expertise with subtle shadings and textures, all contained within a seemingly simple little pop ditty. Winston is releasing the single “Choice Notes”—so perfectly titled—today as a double A-side limited edition 7-inch with “Medicine”. If you like what you hear, head on over to Heavy Roc Music where they are offering up The Basement EP as a free download in exchange for your email address.

As an added treat, check out Winston’s live cover of Mumford and Sons’ “White Blank Page.”

by Jonathan Simrin

27 Jul 2010

Everyone’s favorite Mexican politician/drug lord-marrying, iced coffee-sipping anti-heroine is back for a new season. In case you forgot the last events of the Botwin universe (forgivable given the very uneven fifth season), post-pubescent Shane offed Nancy’s rival with a croquet mallet. As the trailer shows, the Botwins now have to fly under the radar and occasionally don wigs as they see fit to elude the wrath of Esteban. What else can we look forward to this season? Besides the unfortunate absence of Celia Hodes (Elizabeth Perkins), it looks like the Botwin clan is up to there usual tricks – iced coffees and all.

by Matt Mazur

26 Jul 2010

First Film: Fred Zinneman’s Julia (1977)

Must-see: Sophie’s Choice (Alan J. Pakula, 1982); A Cry in the Dark (Fred Schepisi, 1988); and Angels in America (Mike Nichols, 2003)

Star Turn: In Clint Eastwood’s three-hankie, four-star adaptation of The Bridges of Madison County (which, let’s face it, is a crappy book), Streep not only elevated the project’s air of respectability, she also upped her own ante by turning in a performance in which there is absolutely no trace of Meryl Streep. She truly was an Italian war bride, a lonely farm wife who finds love with an unexpected stranger. 

Underrated: Her good-natured, singing turn in Robert Altman’s final film, A Prairie Home Companion, where her version of “Goodbye to Mama” challenges any viewer to hold back the tears.

Upcoming, Current and/or Recent: She will work with Mike Nichols again, alongside Oscar-winner Jeff Bridges, in Great Hope Springs and play British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in a bio. Last year, her hat trick of Wes Anderson’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox, Nora Ephron’s Julie & Julia (as Julia Child) and Nancy Meyers’ It’s Complicated cemented her as a box office force as well as an acting legend, a trend she started with The Devil Wears Prada (2006) and continued with Mamma Mia! (2008). Streep brings home the bacon.

//Mixed media

Because Blood Is Drama: Considering Carnage in Video Games and Other Media

// Moving Pixels

"It's easy to dismiss blood and violence as salacious without considering why it is there, what its context is, and what it might communicate.

READ the article