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Links for the Day: How Internet Journalism Destroyed Tom Cruise, The Strange World of Library Music, Larry Kramer on The Normal Heart, & More

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Links for the Day: How Internet Journalism Destroyed Tom Cruise, The Strange World of Library Music, Larry Kramer on The Normal Heart, & More

1. “How YouTube and Internet Journalism Destroyed Tom Cruise, Our Last Real Movie Star.” Amy Nicholson revisits the Tom Cruise/Oprah couch incident.

“A weird thing happens when people watch a viral video. In catching up with a cultural touchstone, the clip everyone’s talking about at the water cooler, we assume we’re on top of the whole story. After all, we’ve seen what everyone else has seen. Whatever gets edited out isn’t part of the conversation. Tom Cruise and Oprah talked on TV for 43 minutes. ’Tom Cruise Kills Oprah’ was 15 seconds. Even the longer YouTube clips of Cruise on Oprah’s couch clock in at only four minutes. Yet it was the latter two that were shared, discussed and remembered. With all context gone, we’re judging soundbites of Cruise on a screen. We forget he was experiencing a live, long and loud interaction—a literal stage performance before a raucous crowd.”

2. “I Don’t Want to Be Right.” Maria Konnikova on why people persist in believing things that just aren’t true.

“Until recently, attempts to correct false beliefs haven’t had much success. Stephan Lewandowsky, a psychologist at the University of Bristol whose research into misinformation began around the same time as Nyhan’s, conducted a review of misperception literature through 2012. He found much speculation, but, apart from his own work and the studies that Nyhan was conducting, there was little empirical research. In the past few years, Nyhan has tried to address this gap by using real-life scenarios and news in his studies: the controversy surrounding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, the questioning of Obama’s birth certificate, and anti-G.M.O. activism. Traditional work in this area has focussed on fictional stories told in laboratory settings, but Nyhan believes that looking at real debates is the best way to learn how persistently incorrect views of the world can be corrected.”

3. “The Strange World of Library Music.” The dusty field of library music—background tracks owned by labels and lent out to TV, radio, and film projects—has proven to be an endless sample source for hip-hop producers as well as inspiration for avant-garde experimentalists.

“Typically relegated to crate-digger curiosities for their role as sample fodder, library music records of the 1960s and ‘70s tend to hinge more on utilitarian mood-setting than distinct personality. Composers could labor under multiple pseudonyms, artist names were frequently relegated to the back sleeve, and some labels—particularly London’s KPM, which released almost every single one of their LPs in the same olive-green sleeve—thrived while putting their own brand over a musician’s particular identity. Call it the other side of poptimism: Just as the super producers, TV talent-show alumni, and focus-grouped songwriters of the Hot 100 are capable of making transcendent songs from their so-called ’assembly lines,’ so too were the under-attributed composers and studio orchestras of previous eras, whose biggest hope was for their work to find its way into the score of a low-budget sci-fi film or a two-season cop thriller. (Or, more infamously, in a porno—that stereotypical ’whock-a-chicka’ cue had to come from somebody.)”

4. “In Times Like These: Lubitsch Can’t Wait.” Taking a close look at the perfect balance of form and content that is “the Lubitsch touch.”

“The fact that Lubitsch Can’t Wait is the first anthology of its kind speaks of Ernst Lubitsch’s paradoxical critical status. On the one hand, here is a filmmaker whose place inside the canon is never doubted, whose name is accepted with unanimous acclaim. And yet on the other hand, Lubitsch’s position among Hollywood’s great auteurs might also be taken for granted, to the point where his name is mentioned often while his films are never afforded much in the way of extended analysis.”

5. “A Lion Still Roars, With Gratitude.” Larry Kramer Lives to See His Normal Heart Filmed for TV.

” At 78, these are twilight days for Mr. Kramer: his memorable roar reduced to a whisper, his forward march aided by a cane painted with pink roses. Yet he has virtually willed himself into action again to take a victory lap of sorts with broadcast of the film Sunday on HBO. The moment seems more than a little surreal to him. After decades of politicians, celebrities and even liberals and gays keeping a wary distance from his fulminations, the stars of The Normal Heart (Mark Ruffalo, Julia Roberts, Jim Parsons) rushed toward him the other night at an special screening at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie idled nearby, waiting to say hello.”

Video of the Day: Charlie Day’s Merrimack College Commencement Address:

Links for the Day: A collection of links to items that we hope will spark discussion. We encourage our readers to submit candidates for consideration to ed@slantmagazine.com and to converse in the comments section.

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Watch: The Long-Awaited Deadwood Movie Gets Teaser Trailer and Premiere Date

Welcome to fucking Deadwood!

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Deadwood
Photo: HBO

At long last, we’re finally going to see more of Deadwood. Very soon after the HBO series’s cancellation in 2006, creator David Milch announced that he agreed to produce a pair of two-hour films to tie up the loose ends left after the third season. It’s been a long road since, and after many false starts over the years, production on one standalone film started in fall 2018. And today we have a glorious teaser for the film, which releases on HBO on May 31. Below is the official description of the film:

The Deadwood film follows the indelible characters of the series, who are reunited after ten years to celebrate South Dakota’s statehood. Former rivalries are reignited, alliances are tested and old wounds are reopened, as all are left to navigate the inevitable changes that modernity and time have wrought.

And below is the teaser trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAcftIUE6MQ

Deadwood: The Movie airs on HBO on May 31.

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Watch: Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Gets Teaser Trailer

When it rains, it pours.

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Photo: Columbia Pictures

When it rains, it pours. Four days after Quentin Tarantino once more laid into John Ford in a piece written for his Beverly Cinema website that saw the filmmaker referring to Ford’s She Wore a Yellow Ribbon as Tie a Yellow Ribbon, and two days after Columbia Pictures released poster art for QT’s ninth feature that wasn’t exactly of the highest order, the studio has released a teaser for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The film was announced early last year, with Tarantino describing it as “a story that takes place in Los Angeles in 1969, at the height of hippy Hollywood.”

Set on the eve of the Manson family murders, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood tells the story of TV actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), as they try to get involved in the film industry. The film also stars Margot Robbie (as Sharon Tate), Al Pacino, the late Luke Perry, Damian Lewis, Dakota Fanning, Emile Hirsch, Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell, and Bruce Dern in a part originally intended for the late Burt Reynolds.

See the teaser below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Scf8nIJCvs4

Columbia Pictures will release Once Upon a Time in Hollywood on July 26.

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Watch the Stranger Things 3 Trailer, and to the Tune of Mötley Crüe and the Who

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence.

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Stranger Things 3
Photo: Netflix

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence. On Friday, Jeff Tremaine’s The Dirt, a biopic about Mötley Crüe’s rise to fame, drops on Netflix. Today, the streaming service has released the trailer for the third season of Stranger Things. The clip opens with the strains of Mötley Crüe’s “Home Sweet Home,” all the better to underline that the peace and quiet that returned to the fictional rural town of Hawkins, Indiana at the end of the show’s second season is just waiting to be upset again.

Little is known about the plot of the new season, and the trailer keeps things pretty vague, though the Duffer Brothers have suggested that the storyline will take place a year after the events of the last season—duh, we know when “Home Sweet Home” came out—and focus on the main characters’ puberty pangs. That said, according to Reddit sleuths who’ve obsessed over such details as the nuances of the new season’s poster art, it looks like Max and company are going to have to contend with demon rats no doubt released from the Upside Down.

See below for the new season’s trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEG3bmU_WaI

Stranger Things 3 premieres globally on July 4.

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