I Got a Chrome-Plated Heart

… I got wings on these fingers trying to tear it apart: [Chrome]

  • Not that it matters, but I've pretty much transferred my browser allegience from Mozilla's Firefox to Google's Chrome.

    Why? Pretty much just one reason, and that's TPGoogleReader, a Swiss Army Knife for anyone using Google Reader. As near as I can tell, Firefox has nothing like it.

  • One side effect of Google Reader: satirical articles from the Onion get dropped into the feed at random. So when the headline is (for example) "Final Minutes Of Last Harry Potter Movie To Be Split Into Seven Separate Films", there's that few seconds of doubt before you see the source. Really? Wouldn't put it past 'em.

  • Roger Simon reviews David Mamet's new book, The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture
    Mamet certainly made up for lost time. Barely ten pages into his book, you know this man has read, and thoroughly digested, the major conservative works of our and recent times, from Friedrich Hayek to Milton Friedman and on to Thomas Sowell and Shelby Steele. And he is able to explicate and elaborate on them as well as anybody.
    Whoa. I think I'll see if I can fool the University Near Here's Library into getting a copy. Then maybe seeing if Mamet's eligible to run for President.

  • For GOP liberty-lovers trying to make up their mind between Gary Johnson and Ron Paul, Matt Welch, Reason editor, provides your go-to URL today. Lots of further links to more information and opinions.

    When it comes to the premature, shoot-your-own-darn-self-in-the-foot game of Ron Paul or Gary Johnson?, I'm squarely in the Jesse Walker camp-"for now, let them double-team all the authoritarians on the stage."

  • And if your blood pressure is dangerously low, or you need to remember why business-as-usual should not be an option, or you need a reminder of how dishonest politicians and their corporate pals can be, Conn Carroll looks at the numbers behind the recent Chrysler $7.6 billion "loan payback". Bottom line:
    So, to recap, the Obama Energy Department is loaning a foreign car company $3.5 billion so that it can pay the Treasury Department $7.6 billion even though American taxpayers spent $13 billion to save an American car company that is currently only worth $5 billion.
    Gosh, it's almost as if they want to bamboozle taxpayers.

Last Modified 2012-09-26 5:56 AM EDT

The Illusionist

stars] [IMDb Link] [Amazon Link]

Not to be confused with the (pretty good) live-action movie with the same title from a few years back; this one's an animation. In fact it was Oscar-nominated for "Best Animation" last year, losing to Toy Story 3. It was written and directed by Sylvain Chomet, who also wrote and directed The Triplets of Belleville.

Set in the late 1950s, it's the story of "The Great Tatischeff": a stage magician in decline, finding himself playing to ever-smaller and ever-less-appreciative audiences. Even his rabbit that he—yes—pulls out of a hat is hostile, nipping at his fingers and escaping at every opportunity. The magician's wandering ways gives him a venue in a remote Scottish village, where a young girl, Alice, sees him as an escape route to the outside world. Alice and Tatischeff become non-romantically linked, and have many adventures in the big city (Edinburgh).

Subtitles are available, but they're hardly necessary: I can't remember seeing a modern movie with less dialogue. The movie is adapted from a screenplay by the French comedian Jacques Tati and the magician is clearly based on him, even down to physical resemblance and mannerisms. (Tatischeff was Tati's actual name.)

It's a bittersweet and beautiful-looking movie with a lot of understated, gentle humor. It's not as wacky as The Triplets of Belleville, but if you liked that, you'll probably like this, and vice versa.

Last Modified 2012-09-26 5:55 AM EDT