1. “Mickey Rooney R.I.P.” The actor, master of putting on a show, dies at 93.
“Not including the Mickey Maguire shorts, Mr. Rooney made more than 200 movies, earning a total of four Academy Award nominations—he was nominated for best supporting actor as the fast-talking soldier who dies trying to protect $30,000 he won in a craps game in ’The Bold and the Brave’ (1956) and as the trainer of a wild Arabian horse in ’The Black Stallion’ (1979). (Because of his size, Mr. Rooney played a lot of jockeys and, as his waistline expanded, former jockeys who had become trainers. He was the vagabond who helps Elizabeth Taylor turn an unruly horse into a steeplechase champion in her breakthrough film, ’National Velvet,’ in 1944.)”
2. “47 Dead Films.” Films by Hitchcock, Polanski, Bresson, Fassbinder, and others that were never realized.
“At four o’clock one afternoon Luis Buñuel decided that he would make no more films. He was staying in the spa at San Jose Purua in southwest Mexico where, for more than twenty years, Buñuel had gone to write his scripts. It is a semitropical paradise set in a green canyon—a bit too hot, in truth, for Buñuel liked rain, fog, the north. The screenplay was for a film to be called A Sumptuous Ceremony, in homage to Andre Breton, who defined eroticism as ’a sumptuous ceremony in an underground passage.’ From the outset the watchwords were ’terror’ and ’eroticism.’ Bunuel imagined a young girl in a prison cell receiving a visit from a phantom bishop; a trap door led to an underground passageway and to a boat filled with explosives for blowing up the Louvre museum. The script was never finished. Buñuel had barely arrived in San Jose Purua when he felt unwell, ill at ease (this was 1979 and he was therefore seventy-nine years old). He spoke of some ’menace,’ and at four o’clock in the afternoon he announced that his life as a filmmaker was over.”
3. “Plane Search Shows World’s Oceans Are Full of Trash.” Search for missing Malaysian plane shines spotlight on giant ocean garbage patches.
“Because of its remoteness, the Indian Ocean garbage patch remains more of a mystery. It was discovered in 2010 by [Marcus] Eriksen and his crew, who sailed west from Perth, Australia, toward Africa to document it. Eriksen says it comprises a massive area, at least two million square miles (about five million square kilometers) in size, but with no clear boundaries. ’It’s very fluid and changes with the season,’ Eriksen says. ’You could drag nets in one spot and come back the next day and it’s different.’ It also has gaps near Indonesia with very little debris. Maximenko theorizes that much of the marine debris generated by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami has been salvaged by people living along the Indonesian coastline.”
4. “Tilda Swinton Is Not Quite of This World.” Carl Swanson on the iconic actress.
“Swinton shares with Bond and Jarmusch, among other friends and collaborators, an impeccably shod artist-as-revolutionary worldview. When she walked down the cabaret aisle, in a severe off-the-shoulder gray sheath, with her handsome younger boyfriend, Sandro Kopp, everyone, including Bond, skipped a beat. Swinton is hard to miss, and her presence can be, to those susceptible to her austere weirdo-ness, vaguely exalting. If she didn’t exist, there is no way anyone else could play the role, or roles.”
5. “From Washington to Westeros, how rape plays out on TV.” Alyssa Rosenberg on the rape storylines featured on your favorite dramas.
“While Cersei is freed from her abuser, she can do little to change the norms that made her rape, and so many others, permissible. Her own son begins to exhibit a streak of sexual sadism. And this season, Cersei must stand with her father when a prince from a neighboring kingdom reopens accusations that the Lannisters had his sister, Cersei’s predecessor, raped and murdered. Cersei, like other characters in ’Game of Thrones,’ rages against the idea that female life and female safety are cheap. The horror of the show is not just that sexual assault is commonplace but that women like Cersei often have little choice but to work with the people who are the authors of their misery. And even cooperation is no guarantee of protection. When Cersei’s father tries to arrange another marriage for her, her terror is obvious as she begs him, ’Don’t make me do it again, please.’”
Video of the Day: This extended look at Godzilla, beyond hilariously suggesting that Juliette Binoche actually becomes Godzilla, reveals too much about the film, and hints that it may be a lot more rote than its great teasers have suggested until now:
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 firstname.lastname@example.org and to converse in the comments section.