Against my better judgement, the lights in my apartment are connected to a wireless network controlled via an app. There are physical buttons, but they are located near the plugs, at ground level and often behind obstructions. When I leave, turning off the light requires digging my phone out of my pocket, typing in the unlock code, opening the app, waiting for it to detect the network, then tapping a button to turn off the light. I do all of this while standing an inch or so away from the old wall switch, the use of which would achieve the same result in a fraction of the time. As a result of this modernity, every time I leave the apartment, I feel the uncontrollable urge to make sure I’m listening to the title theme from French director Jacques Tati’s 1958 masterpiece Mon Oncle. I am, at that moment, Monsieur Hulot. Continue reading…
Posted July 7, 2014
Writer, director, actor and producer Paul Mazursky has died. Mazursky directed Bob And Carol And Ted And Alice (1969), Harry And Tonto (1974), An Unmarried Woman (1978), Moscow On The Hudson (1984), Down And Out In Beverly Hills (1986), Enemies, A Love Story (1989). Mazursky was Emmanuel Stoker in The Blackboard Jungle (1955), a tv interviewer in the pilot of The Monkees, which he co-wrote, Norm in Curb Your Enthusiasm and Sunshine in The Sopranos. Mazursky wrote most of his films. He also wrote the screenplay for, I Love You, Alice B. Toklas (1968). The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and Variety have obituaries. Here Mazursky talks about Bob And Carol And Ted And Alice. Here’s a tribute to Mazursky from the 2010 Ventura Film Festival. And here Mazusky interviews Leonard Nimoy and Mel Brooks and Richard Donner on his internet show, It’s All Crap.