Skip to main content

The Painting

So I've been teaching myself French. I'm still nowhere near fluent, but I'm picking things up. I use Duolingo and Coffee Break French, and I also wanted to try and find some French-language children's programming on Netflix.

Turns out pickin's are pretty slim on Netflix. But I did find one movie that was purported to be for children ages 11-12, and it was called The Painting. In English, anyway. In French it's Le Tableau. Well, the characters spoke too fast for me to keep up. As a language-learning tool, it was kind of a bust. I need something for younger children.

But as a film, I found it totally charming. It's colorful, imaginative, and delightfully strange. And I was impressed by how it refused to talk down to its audience. This was ostensibly for 11 to 12 year olds, but it had some (animated) nudity and didn't seem the least bit squeamish with sexuality. The main themes are class struggle, prejudice, and the search for God (the movie is unabashedly deist, if that sort of thing matters to you).

It's only 80 minutes long, so if you're looking for something different and aren't averse to subtitles, I heartily recommend it. It's not a perfect film, but it is a fairly unique one with a decidedly non-American sensibility to it. And very, very charming. Or, if you will, c'est très, très charmant.

]{p

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

100 Albums

Hello all!

In an attempt to keep the old blog from atrophying, I'm going to try out a project a friend of mine did a few years ago and spend the year writing about some of my favorite albums. So over the next 50 weeks, you can expect a couple entries a week until we get to 100. Or until I run out of steam and give up. Whichever comes first.

The only rule I'm giving myself here is to limit things to one album per artist. If that would preclude other favorite albums from making the list, I'll note it, but I don't want the list to be completely overrun by Radiohead and the Beatles. I'm going to start at the top of the list (that is, with my #1 favorite), but the ordering is not super rigorous--especially beyond the first twenty or so.

I'll put a master list on a page that's easily accessible from the front and I'll probably throw in some supplemental stuff, like albums I loved as a child but can't really listen to anymore for various reasons or albums …

"Writing Lots!" by Dawn Vogel

Hi, I'm Dawn, and I'm doing guest post here on Kurt's blog. I write fantasy, steampunk, YA, and pretty much anything else that looks shiny for a moment. You can learn more about me here! Today, I'm talking about how I write as much as I do.

I've been writing since I knew how to do so, but I've been writing with an eye toward publication for about eleven years. As I've gotten more comfortable with the craft of writing, my productivity has increased dramatically. In the first six years I was writing seriously, I wrote fewer than twenty short stories, all told. Over the next three years, I increased my output and wrote about a dozen stories a year (with an occasional poem mixed in). Last year, I wrote 38 short stories/flash and 6 poems. This year, I've already surpassed that, and it's only September.

In analyzing how I've increased my output so dramatically, I've found three main keys to my prolific writing: 1) planning, 2) stolen moments, and 3)…

100 Albums: "Untitled (IV/Zoso)" by Led Zeppelin

Kurt is going through his favorite records. Read the explainer or view the master list.

Artist: Led Zeppelin
Title: untitled
Released: 1971
Genre: classic rock


Is there a more epic album opening than Black Dog? Plant screaming "Hey, Hey, Mama..." and a trio of musicians exploding into that proto-metal riff behind him? There's a reason Led Zeppelin is always included in discussions of who might be the greatest rock band of all time: Plant's bluesy wail, Bonham's impossibly huge drum sound, Page's guitar work--and tone, when people talk about "vintage guitar tone" they're talking about Jimmy Page--and Jones's bass and keys (bassists are the unsung heroes of rock, and Jones's bass work here is low-key phenomenal). They're an iconic band, and this is their most iconic album.

Officially untitled, but commonly referred to as either Zoso or IV, this record is not only their best-selling, but it contains their most well-known song, Stairway To H…