Saturday, September 29, 2007

Shantaram - Gregory David Roberts

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

Part 4.

Part 5.

Gregory David Roberts, the author of Shantaram, provides an overview of his experience living in a slum in Bombay!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

H.G. Wells, Things to Come (1936)

Things to Come (1 hour 32 mins) is a 1936 British science fiction film, produced by Alexander Korda and directed by William Cameron Menzies. The screenplay was written by H. G. Wells and is a loose adaptation of his own 1933 novel The Shape of Things to Come. The film stars Raymond Massey.

Plot: On the Christmas Eve of 1940, war begins as the city of Everytown is bombed. The war lasts 66 years, during which time civilization falls into anarchy. Eventually the warlord who calls himself The Boss emerges to establish brutish control over the chaos. But then a scientific group called Wings Over the World emerges and is able to quash the regime of The Boss using a peace gas. The scientists then set about building a shining white new scientific Utopia on the ruins of the old civilization. In the year 2036, the culmination of the new society's scientific vision is the launching of the first Moon shot. «

Monday, September 10, 2007

François Truffaut's Fahernhiet 451 (1966)

Fahernhiet 451
Fahrenheit 451 is a dystopian soft science fiction novella by Ray Bradbury that was published in 1953.

The novel presents a future in which all books are banned and critical thought is suppressed. The central character, Guy Montag, is employed as a "fireman" (which, in this case, means "book burner"). 451 degrees Fahrenheit is stated as "the temperature at which book-paper catches fire, and burns …". (451 °F equals 233 °C) It was originally published as a shorter novella, The Fireman, in the February 1951 issue of Galaxy Science Fiction. A film adaptation, by François Truffaut, was released in 1966, and another is anticipated to begin filming in 2008. In addition to the movie, there have been at least two BBC Radio 4 dramatizations, both of which follow the book very closely.

Over the years, the novel has been subject to various interpretations, primarily focusing on the historical role of book burning in suppressing dissenting ideas. However, Bradbury has stated that the novel is not about censorship, but is a story about how television destroys interest in reading literature, which ultimately leads to ignorance of total facts.[1]

Bradbury has stated that the entirety of his novel was written in the basement of UCLA's Powell library on a pay typewriter. His original intention in writing Fahrenheit 451 was to show his great love for books and libraries. He has often referred to Montag as an allusion to himself.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Kerobokan Prison in Bali

This is a video about conditions inside Kerobokan Prison in Bali, Indonesia. This is not a place you would want to find yourself in. Indonesia has over 450 reported prisons. It will come as no surprise to anyone that Indonesia has imprisoned large amounts of Papuans during its occupation of and genocide in West Papua. Kept in terrible conditions, prisoners are often tortured and many ‘disappear’ or are poisoned. As well there are over 30 Australians in jail in Bali of which 6 are facing the death penalty. For information and assistance regarding jail in Indonesia of non-residents see the Foreign Prisoner Support Service - Indonesia.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Scratch 2001

Scratch (92 mins) is a 2001 documentary film, directed by Doug Pray, that examines cultural and historical perspectives on the birth and evolution of hip-hop disc jockeys (DJs), scratching and turntablism and includes interviews with some of hip-hop's most famous and respected DJs.

Interviewees include: Grand Wizard Theodore (the inventor of the scratch), Grand Mixer Q-bert (Title given by Grand Mixer DXT to Q Bert in the movie), Grand Mixer DXT, Z-Trip, Mix Master Mike, Rob Swift, DJ Premier, Afrika Bambaataa, Jazzy Jay, Cut Chemist, NuMark, DJ Craze, DJ Shadow, DJ Babu and DJ Krush. Madlib and Peanut Butter Wolf also make uncredited appearances at a scrathching jam session.