Friday, March 21, 2008

Baghdad Life

My friend Sarmad is Iraqi. He left his country after the American invasion, and moved to the US where he got a Master in Journalism from Columbia University in New York. He's now a reporter at the Wall Street Journal, where he writes a blog.

I find his articles fascinating. To be able to read the thoughts of an Iraqi who lived there when the war began, what he thought of Saddam, how he lived before and how he reacted to the invasion, how he deals with living far away from his endangered family today gives an incredibly humane side to this sad, never-ending story...

For once, the news is not about anonymous deaths and far away cities, it's about one man and his family's lives.

If you want to know more about the Iraq War, and how the Bush administration butchered it, you should absolutely watch "No End in Sight" the fantastic documentary by Charles Ferguson. Netflix it today.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Good Morning New York

Indeed, good morning to you from the great state of NY. The empire state.

Well, let's be honest, lately it's been mainly the empire of morons, thanks to our dignified leader, Governor Eliot Spitzer. Let me ask you, who pays $4400 for a hooker for one night, when my Mexican friend over at ***** Street Pizza tells me it's only $120 here in Brooklyn? ("It was good", he says).

You won't hear anyone calling into Larry King with the same comment though. No, Wednesday night on Campbell Brown, the CNN panel ("Best in the nation") said "what a pity it was for someone as educated as Spitzer, who likely spent half a million dollars on his Harvard education, to go down the drain with a high-school dropout, actress-wanabee hooker". Wow, talk about dignity!

It's official, people are know ranked in value according to how much they spend on their education! This is CNN, where people are NOT equal!!!
I wonder what they'll say about Governor-to-be Patterson, who's legally blind.

On the brighter side though, always creative Virgin Mobile (do you think Mr Bronson ever paid a visit to a hooker? Difficult to believe he hasn't, and that's his charm) came up with this brilliant ad:

Of course, they're not authorized to use Spitzer's image, but they did anyway. Same thing Ryanair did 2 months ago, with this ad featuring French president Nicolas Sarkozy and then-girlfriend, singer model Carla Bruni.

"With Ryanair, my entire family can come and attend my wedding"

Sarkozy sued Ryanair, of course, and won almost $90.000 for Carla, and one symbolic euro for himself. How gentleman of him. He then got married with Bruni, and I wasn't invited. (But I'll try to crash this one, in NY).

It has to be said, though, Sarkozy is still the very trendy French president, and Spitzer the very done NY nothing-anymore. So will Spitzer sue? It might still be a good idea, a kind of rehearsal for a bigger yet-to-come trial. Gotta make sure those NY lawyers are still the greatest.

Oh! And don't worry, Ryanair still has a few tricks up its sleazy sleeve...

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Monday, March 10, 2008

French News

If you want to know the latest in French News, and if you speak French, I have to recommend Martin Vidberg's new blog, "L'actu en patates".

Although I disprove of hosting this fantastic blog on the very socialist-oriented Le Monde website*, I can only applaud the finesse** of the observations from Martin, also known as "Everland".

"The democrats' campaign gets tough"

"UMP" is the name of President Sarkozy's party, recently getting incredibly low ratings.

He uses here his signature style patatoes' cartoons, as he previously did with his extremely successful Everland blog. I've been following his internet success for pretty much 4 years now, and was thrilled when he published to great success, last year "Le journal d'un remplacant" that had premiered on his blog.

One of my favorite ever from Everland (as I will always call him) is "The Planet". (Link on the bottom of the page)

It's always fascinating to see someone starting small on the web, and getting famous, rich and popular***. He even does french commercials now. Pfffff!!!!

And yes, it's narrated by Andre Dussolier, the famed French actor who also did the Voice Over for Amelie.

Both of Martin's blogs are linked on the right side of this blog, in the link section. Don't forget to check him out often.

* Irony
** En Francais dans le texte
*** According to the 2011 edition of Forbes "the richest comic artists".

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Bjork frees Tibet...

Today, props to Bjork, the fantasicelandic singer, for shooting "Tibet, Tibet!" during her concert in China. Incredibly controversial, and right in your face. 100% pure Bjork.

As a reminder, I worked on one of the latest Bjork Video.
Here are a couple of pics I like...

First the slate of the shoot:

Then Michel Gondry directing, and Bjork performing:

This one I like a lot: Michel Gondry alone behing a computer, thinking God knows what...

And finally, one of my favorite, the video being edited, live in Final Cut Pro, during the shoot!

You can see all those pictures and much more on my SmugMug...

To conclude, of course, the video itself!!!