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by J.M. Suarez

21 Jul 2010

Pearl Jam premiered two videos yesteday: “Unthought Known” live from Berlin and “Amongst the Waves”. 

“Unthought Known” is directed by Wes C. Addle, a pseudonym used by Eddie Vedder, and features the band performing for a huge audience of enthusiastic fans in Berlin. As always, the band knows how to put on a show and their energy translates easily to the crowd.

Pearl Jam has always exhibited an affinity for the ocean with Vedder as an avid surfer and numerous songs on the subject (“Oceans”, “Big Wave”) and “Amongst the Waves” is only the most recent song to highlight this. The third single from Backspacer, the video for “Amongst the Waves” contains some beautifully shot footage of the ocean interspersed with performance clips. The band is surely making a strong statement in favor of ocean conservation, particularly in the wake of the BP oil disaster.  From the Pearl Jam website: “For every sale of the video on iTunes store in the US, Pearl Jam will donate proceeds to Conservation International”.

by Matt Mazur

21 Jul 2010

First Film: Flirting (John Duigan, 1994) opposite long-time friend Nicole Kidman

Must-see: 21 Grams (Alejandro Gonzales Inaritu, 2003); I Heart Huckabees (David O. Russell, 2004); The Painted Veil (John Curran, 2006)

Star Turn: As Betty/Diane in David Lynch’s complicated masterpiece Mulholland Drive

Underrated: Eastern Promises (David Cronenberg, 2007)

Upcoming, Current and/or Recent: A hat-trick of interesting women this year with the recent Mother and Child for Rodrigo Garcia and Woody Allen’s You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger later this summer, plus she is playing Valerie Plame opposite Sean Penn in Doug Liman’s Fair Game which got good notices at Cannes earlier this year. She is committed to play Marilyn Monroe in a biopic for Andrew Dominink (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford).

by L.B. Jeffries

21 Jul 2010

Of all the video game avatars that provide ample space for the adolescent male psyche to project into, perhaps none is better suited than Kratos from the God of War series. While Darksiders borrows heavily from the classic Warhammer style of hulking armor or Solid Snake nails the perfect soldier, Kratos is just pure seething id. Interrupted only by the occasional sex romp, he does nothing except smash, kill, and destroy anything that crosses him. The character works nicely because underneath all that are a lot of awkward emotions and guilt because Kratos accidentally killed his wife and child mid-kill-a-thon. Every teenager feels a lot of frustration and anger growing up and sometimes it feels good to express those feelings by tearing something ’s head off.

That’s what makes this particular spoof a bit sharper than your average gamer satire. Borrowing from a long list of sad-bastard man films like Garden State, Rushmore, and The Royal Tenenbaums, it takes that basic film formula and mixes it with the characters from God of War. The weird thing is that it works, mostly because both Kratos and the broken males starring in those types of films have a lot in common underneath the surface. Max Fischer might start clubs instead of killing Gods, but there’s still that same basic archetype at work. Joining in with the trailer’s spirit of coming across as a pretentious prick, perhaps there’s a little bit of Kratos in all of us?

The song in the video is ‘Home’ by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes.

by G. Christopher Williams

21 Jul 2010

In case you don’t have the time to play through these classics, the writers of 8-Bit Twilight Eclipse Interactive (who in a recent post I criminally failed to credit alongside 8-bit animator, Doctor Octoroc), the Fine brothers, bring you a pretty complete education in Nintendo game endings in just two minutes.

For a moment, the video makes you ponder the simplicity of storytelling in games from the ‘80s and early ‘90s.  Well, until you get to explanations of the conclusions of the games in the Ninja Gaiden series.

By the way, those space invaders?  They will win eventually. 

Pac-Man?  Yeah, the ghosts will get him eventually, too.

by Matt Mazur

21 Jul 2010

Robert Duvall, Bill Murray and Sissy Spacek star in this “true tall tale” about a wild, misunderstood man coming to grips with a complicated past.

PopMatters will be publishing our first-ever Performer Spotlight week-long series on co-star Spacek Monday, July 26 through Friday, July 30 and this in-depth look at her career will culminate in a rather epic interview with both Spacek and Duvall.

From Sony Pictures Classics, Get Low will open in limited release July 30.

//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