A Great Poem

Migrant agricultural worker in pea pickers’ camp, Nipomo, California, 1936. Photograph: Dorothea Lange
(Hay una versión en español de esta entrada AQUÍ)

Herbert Hoover was the president of the United States when the Stock Market in Wall Street crashed and the whole world descended into the Great Depression. Despite his lifelong reputation as a man of extraordinary managerial skills, Hoover was overwhelmed by the scope and depth of the crisis.

At some point, doggedly cornered by the press and his political rivals to put forward some solution to the economic meltdown, all he managed to say was: «What this country needs is a great poem.»

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Trimalchio in West Egg

Trimalchio en los bosques angel mirou

(There is a Spanish version of this entry HERE)

The Great Gatsby is nowadays considered Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece, and one of the best novels published in what has been called «the American century». (On a side note, when such expressions are coined it usually means that the Golden Age has passed, and the American century might be over…)

So, as a youtuber might say, «respect!»

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The Great Combat for the Title

hemingway vs fitzgerald

The title in a story is like a person’s face: often the first thing you notice, and the first thing that either catches your attention or leaves you cold.

A title that doesn’t fit can burden a book or a film with the expectations it raises. It can also carry it an extra mile. Ask Steven Soderbergh and his Sex, Lies and Videotape (which of course  started the 90s trend of trifecta titles, as in «This thing, That thing and also that other thing«).

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I’m Your Greatest Idol


A YOUNG COUPLE enjoy a good meal at a fancy restaurant in New York. The year is 2009.


This place is amazing!


I know! Everybody says this is the real thing this year.


You sure we can afford this?


Don’t worry about that. Tonight’s a special night.

Someone clears his throat. Phil turns his head and finds DAVID BOWIE squatting by his side, grinning.

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A Nasty Building

African-American patron going in colored entrance of the Crescent Theatre in Belzoni, Mississippi, on a Saturday afternoon. 1939 PHOTO: Marion Post Wolcott

«My rubber heels slithered on the pavement as I turned into the narrow lobby of the Fulwider Building. A single drop light burned far back, beyond an open, once-gilt elevator.

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Slow Death (Blog rescues)


Once upon a time I kept a blog on Filmcommunity.com. Back then I thought backup was for cowards, so of course when the site closed I lost all but a few texts. I’d like retrieve those surviving posts, starting with this one.

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