This is lovely and heartbreaking all at once. Warning: you will probably have a few tears running down your face by the end.
Jason Woods has been a dear friend of mine for about five years. He’s sort of “a man of the street” and at the time, I was going through a hard time in my life. No one could get into my personal space and Jason sort of invaded it and sort of showed me a part of life that I never understood. Even though he doesn’t like it, I call him the “Mother Teresa of Long Beach” because this guy helps all the marginalized and forgotten people of the world but has nothing for himself. I sort of fell in love with him as a character and started shooting him and his friends. We released a little thing called Five Hours with Woody about two or three years ago and that sort of exploded. Since then we’ve been shooting Jason’s life and several other lives he’s connected to for a larger body of work called Eight Lives.
One night Jason called me and said that he was putting Oden down. I was familiar with the dog—he was sort of his counterpart in a lot of ways. Jason would literally put up in his house and then take care of the heroin or speed addicts that were trying to kick their drug addiction. He told me they were going to put the dog down and I said, “Jay, I don’t know what else to do besides come in with cameras and continue to shoot this thing and just see what happens.” The cameramen [Luke Korver and Matt Taylor] and everyone else that I brought into that environment were profoundly affected by everything that transpired that day. I went home that night and edited it together in four hours and had a very cathartic release. After I bawled my eyes out, I just said, “Screw it, I’m just going to throw this up on Vimeo and see if there will be any conversation or dialogue.” I wanted to get a sense of whether or not this was an amazing story or just some crazy dude that I’m in love with.
Do all our primate cousins just look at us and shake their heads? "Oh those poor humans, look how slow and clumsy they are".
This is at the cafe inside the Memphis Zoo. The manager of the cafe told me that the alpha male monkey noticed me the second I walked in the door and started going crazy, because, as the alpha male, he feels threatened by tall males. So she told me to go stand by the window and turn my back on him and that he would "attack" me...
Using craft paper, plastic, plaster, acrylic resin, paint and other materials Takanori Aiba constructs sprawling miniature communities that wrap around bonsai trees, lighthouses, and amongst the cliffs of nearly vertical islands.
“The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore” is one of five animated short films that will be considered for outstanding film achievements of 2011 in the 84th Academy Awards. And it's makers have made it available to watch online. Quite lovely [update: The film won the Oscar! ]:
“Morris Lessmore” is a story of people who devote their lives to books and books who return the favor. Morris Lessmore is a poignant, humorous allegory about the curative powers of story. Using a variety of techniques (miniatures, computer animation, 2D animation) award winning author/ illustrator William Joyce and Co-director Brandon Oldenburg present a new narrative experience that harkens back to silent films and M-G-M Technicolor musicals. “Morris Lessmore” is old fashioned and cutting edge at the same time.
Welcome aboard fellow travelers. This is Captain Machine Elf, piloting flight #1 of Air Lasagna - our mission is to keep the lasagna flying. Crew will be around soon with the refreshments cart, offering trivial information and useful misinformation. In case of emergency, please note that the exits are to belief on the left, and non-belief on the right. And in the likely case of nausea, sick bags can be found in the pocket of the seat in front of you.
We trust you'll enjoy the flight, please relax and let us know if there's anything we can do.
Various medical authorities swarm in and out of here predicting I have between two days and two months to live. I think they are guessing. I remain cheerful and unimpressed. I look forward without dogmatic optimism but without dread. I love you all and I deeply implore you to keep the lasagna flying. - Robert Anton Wilson