More Digital Fun with Words: Movie/TV Edition

Word frequency tools (ever see a tag cloud or play with Google NGram viewer?) have been proliferating. Here’s a fun one, called Bookworm: Movies, that takes Open Titles movie and TV subtitle files as its corpus, covering nearly 90,000 movies and shows. Check out the background story and some interesting examples from creator Ben Schmidt’s (Northeastern University) blog.


Crowdfunded Build of Film Color Database Underway


Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari (1919)

“In just under 120 years of film history several hundred cinematic colour processes have emerged, many of which had their roots in nineteenth century still photography. To date, though, we still lack a comprehensive research publication that connects the technical foundations of these processes to their respective contemporary reception and their aesthetic or narrative uses.”

Concerned with “the perception and transformation of film colours as a result of their digitization,” Dr. Barbara Flückiger, professor for film studies at the University of Zurich, has recently launched the revamped Timeline of Historical Film Colors.  Beautiful images and bibliographies of technical and primary documentation are available arranged by either Flueckiger’s classification scheme of processes or in a chronological timeline.

Food Film Friday Starts September 20!

First in an ongoing series of films relating to food..

Gleaners and I poster

Join us for our first Food Film Friday this week! 

Agnès Varda’s The Gleaners and I

NOON in Paley Library Lecture Hall, 1210 Polett Walk. Snacks available. Free and open to all!

Here and there in France, Agnès Varda has come across gleaners, forgagrers, rummagers and scavengers. Through necessity, purely by chance or out of choice these people pick up left-over items dicarded by others. Their world is a surprising one. It is a far cry from the world of yesterday’s gleaners, peasant women who rummaged for bits of wheat left after the harvest. Potatoes, apples and other discarded foodstuffs, things without owners, clocks without hands are the fare of today’s gleaners. But Agnès Varda herself is just as much a gleaner, and her documentary is subjective. There is no age limit to curiosity. Filming itself is gleaning.

recent additions to Silent Film Online

Silent Film Online has added 137 new titles to the streaming collection this month.  They’ve also added some information about the score composer for some of the films.  Highlights in the new content include:

British Film Institute:  examples of early British and French cinema from the 1900s

  • A Visit to Peek Frean and Co.’s Biscuit Works, 1906  This company publicity film is one of the earliest surviving examples of film documenting British industry.
  • Ali Baba et les quarante voleurs, 1905.  This 1905 Pathé Brothers production by director Segundo de Chomon is a French film version of Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves. An example of color stencil color film print, a technique patented as the Pathéchrome process.
  • A Day in the Life of a Coalminer, 1910.
  • Rescued by Rover, 1905.  This highly successful kidnapping drama directed by Cecil Hepworth features the Hepworth family dog, Blair, who went on to be one of the first dog film stars. Recognized as the United Kingdom’s first major fiction film, it is also said to have been the first film to have used paid actors.

Flicker Alley:  first installment of over 80 hours of content acquired from Flicker Alley, this update features selections from the definitive Rudolph Valentino DVD, Valentino: Rediscovering an Icon of Silent Film, a compilation that details several aspects of the Italian actor’s remarkable life and legacy.

  • Character Studies, 1927.  This comedy features cameo appearances by Rudolph Valentino, Douglas Fairbanks, Buster Keaton, Jackie Coogan, and Harold Lloyd.
  • A Trip to Paramountown, 1922.  A behind-the-scenes look at the Paramount Pictures studio.
  • Valentino: Screen Snapshots.  This documentary features a behind-the-scenes look at the 1921 Valentino film The Sheik.

Kino International

  • Harry Houdini: Archival Footage.  This documentary features archival footage of Houdini’s escapes, from the collection of the George Eastman House Motion Picture Department.
  • By the Sun’s Rays, 1914.  A silent one-reel Western film featuring Lon Chaney considered to be his earliest film that has survived.
  • The Silent Years.  A 1970s PBS series hosted by Orson Welles which features stars like Lillian Gish discussing monumental silent films like Broken Blossoms.
  • Faust: Deluxe Edition.  This special Kino edition contains the Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau Foundation’s meticulous restoration of the original German version of the film (with unique hand-painted intertitles), as well as a lengthier alternate cut prepared by the Ufa Studios in 1930.


People’s History in Texas event, including desegregation of movie theaters

Poster announcement for the People's History in Texas presentation.  Contains an image of protesters picketing segregation in movie theaters.


Stand-Ins, Underground Papers, Communal Farms

People’s History in Texas presents: The Texas You Don’t Know

Thirty years of oral history, independent filmmaking, and digital publishing about the civil rights, union, and antiwar movements in Texas.

Stand-ins were demonstrations aimed at desegregating movie theaters, held in Austin from 1960-61.

Texas has a rich history of activism, and People’s History of Texas has worked to uncover and preserve it. The group has told stories of communal subsistence farms, women labor organizers, the Austin underground paper The Rag, and the stand-ins, an effective tactic for desegregating movie theaters. Richard Croxdale, a founding member of the group, will present selections from recent projects and work in progress on the stand-ins. Come for a lively presentation and discussion.


Monday, April 15th, 12:00 noon

Anderson Hall, 821

Sponsored by the American Studies Program and the History Department

FMA Visiting Artists Series Begins

Temple University spring 2013 visiting filmmakers and media artists series


February 13, Ed Halter
Ed Halter is a critic, curator and a founder and director of Light Industry, a venue for film and electronic art in Brooklyn, New York. Halter co-curated the film/video program for the 2012 Whitney Biennial and teaches at Bard College.

February 20, Amanda Trager and Erik Moskowitz
Moskowitz/Trager’s conceptual video works inhabit ideas about collectivities and self-determination, featuring characters whose voices have been replaced by dubbed singing. Their newest work will premiere at the 2013 Rotterdam International Film Festival and at the Centre Pompidou in Paris

February 27, Marina Zurkow
Zurkow’s media works examine humans’ relationships to animals, plants and the weather, taking the form of video and software-driven animation, sculpture, and participatroy public art projects. A 2011 Guggenheim Fellow, Zurkow teaches in the Interactive Telecommunications Program at NYU.

March 6, Tim Portlock
Tim Portlock’s widely exhibited recent work is created using 3D gaming technology to investigate the social and economic impact of America’s rapid de-industrialization, such as foreclosures in Philadelphia and arrested building constructions in Las Vegas. He is a 2011 Pew Fellow and a professor at Hunter college.

March 15-16, Chris Marker Symposium at the Slought Foundation
A 2-day symposium celebrating one of the most prolific and inventive media artists in the history of cinema. Co-sponsored by Temple University and University of Pennsylvania, fetured speakers include Agnes Varda, Raymond Bellour, Bill Horrigan, Hito Steryl, Nora Alter, Lynn Sachs and others. For more information: visit:

March 20, Neil Goldberg
Goldberg’s celebrated 2012 exhibition at the Museum of New York presents video installations and photographs that capture the unexpected power and resonance of everyday moments. A Guggenheim Fellow, he has also exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, The Hammer Museum, The Jewish Museum, and the New Museum of Contemporary Art, among others.

April 3, Matt Wolf
Matt Wolf is a documentary filmmaker whose work includes the award winning, theatrically released Wild Combination about the avant-garde cellist and disco producer Arthur Russell. A 2010 Guggenheim Fellow, Wolf just completed Teenage, a doc/fiction historical essay about the invention of teenagers and the pre-history of youth culture.

April 3, So Yong Kim
So  YOng Kim is an award winning writer, director and producer. In Between Days won the Special Jury Prize at Sundance and Treeless Mountain won awards at Berlin, Dubai and Pusan International Film Festivals. For Ellen, starring Paul Dano, was released theatrically this past Fall, premiering at the Sundance and Berlin International Film Festivals.

April 17, Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder
Gibson and Recoder’s 16mm projector performances and installations unite the rich traditions of the experimental film, particularly its structuralist and materialist strands, and the multi-modal sensibility of expanded cinema that emerged in the 1960s. Their work has been exhibited at the Whitney Biennial, Pacific Film Archives, The Sundance Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival, as well as museums internationally.

some CHOICE titles for the year

Among the year-end best of 2012 lists that abound are some lists of academic books that librarians found most interesting.  Here are a few film and related title, below, from CHOICE REVIEWS Outstanding Academic Titles 2012.  If you haven’t seen them already, perhaps some will pique your interest for a little intersession reading.

Some film titles from the year:

Cavalier, Stephen.  The world history of animation.  California, 2011.  416p bibl  index  ISBN 0520261127, $39.95  ISBN 9780520261129, $39.95  Jun’12, 49-5398.

Abraham, Adam.  When Magoo flew: the rise and fall of animation studio UPA.  Wesleyan, 2012.  301p bibl  filmography  index  afp  ISBN 9780819569141, $29.95;  ISBN 9780819572707 e-book, contact publisher for price  Sep’12, 50-0176.

Ganti, Tejaswini.  Producing Bollywood: inside the contemporary Hindi film industry.  Duke, 2012.  424p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780822352020, $99.95;  ISBN 9780822352136 pbk, $27.95  Sep’12, 50-0178.

Haltof, Marek.  Polish film and the Holocaust: politics and memory.  Berghahn Books, 2012.  274p bibl  filmography  index  afp  ISBN 9780857453563, $90.00;  ISBN 9780857453570 e-book, contact publisher for price  Jun’12, 49-5562.

Israeli cinema: identities in motion, ed. by Miri Talmon and Yaron Peleg.  Texas, 2011.  373p bibl  filmography  index  afp  ISBN 9780292725607, $55.00  Jan’12, 49-2563.

Jenkins, Tricia.  The CIA in Hollywood: how the agency shapes film and television.  Texas, 2012.  167p bibl  index  afp  On order for library.

Kord, Susanne.  Contemporary Hollywood masculinities: gender, genre, and politics, by Susanne Kord and Elisabeth Krimmer.  Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.  280p bibl  index  ISBN 0230338410, $85.00  ISBN 9780230338418, $85.00  Aug’12, 49-6776.

Lehman, Katherine J.  Those girls: single women in sixties and seventies popular culture.  University Press of Kansas, 2011.  312p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780700618088, $29.95  Jan’12, 49-2564.

Martin, Florence.  Screens and veils: Maghrebi women’s cinema.  Indiana, 2011.  271p bibl  afp  ISBN 9780253356680, $70.00;  ISBN 9780253223418 pbk, $24.95  May’12, 49-4950.

Mehta, Monika.  Censorship and sexuality in Bombay cinema.  Texas, 2011.  304p bibl  index  afp  On order for library.

Murphy, J. J.  The black hole of the camera: the films of Andy Warhol.  California, 2012.  203p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780520271876, $70.00;  ISBN 9780520271883 pbk, $29.95  Sep’12, 50-0180.

Peberdy, Donna.  Masculinity and film performance: male angst in contemporary American cinema.  Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.  219p bibl  filmography  index  afp  ISBN 9780230283787, $80.00  Mar’12, 49-3764.

Ross, Steven J.  Hollywood left and right: how movie stars shaped American politics.  Oxford, 2011.  500p index  afp  ISBN 0195181727, $29.95  ISBN 9780195181722, $29.95  Apr’12, 49-4360.

The Wiley-Blackwell history of American film, ed. by Cynthia Lucia, Roy Grundmann, and Art Simon.  Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.  4v bibl  index  afp  ISBN 1405179848, $595.00  ISBN 9781405179843, $595.00  Oct’12, 50-0773.


And a selection of some other titles that could be of interest:

Made to be seen: perspectives on the history of visual anthropology, ed. by Marcus Banks and Jay Ruby.  Chicago, 2011.  419p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780226036618, $110.00;  ISBN 9780226036625 pbk, $35.00  Mar’12, 49-3942

Matson, Wallace.  Grand theories and everyday beliefs: science, philosophy, and their histories.  Oxford, 2011.  223p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780199812691, $35.00  Jun’12, 49-5599

Tate, Carolyn E.  Reconsidering Olmec visual culture: the unborn, women, and creation.  Texas, 2012.  399p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780292728523, $65.00;  ISBN 9780292735491e-book, contact publisher for price  Aug’12, 49-6971

Friedlander, Eli.  Walter Benjamin: a philosophical portrait.  Harvard, 2012.  285p index  afp  ISBN 0674061691, $39.95  ISBN 9780674061699, $39.95  Jul’12, 49-6198

Leet, Sri Kartini.  Reading photography: a sourcebook of critical texts, 1921-2000, [selected] by Sri Kartini Leet; [ed.] by Alison Hill.  Lund Humphries, 2011.  372p index  ISBN 0853319766, $250.00  ISBN 9780853319764, $250.00  Aug’12, 49-6608

De Villiers, Nicholas.  Opacity and the closet: queer tactics in Foucault, Barthes, and Warhol.  Minnesota, 2012.  229p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780816675708, $75.00;  ISBN 9780816675715 pbk, $25.00  Nov’12, 50-1252

Braddock, Jeremy.  Collecting as modernist practice.  Johns Hopkins, 2012.  319p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 1421403641, $39.95  ISBN 9781421403649, $39.95  Sep’12, 50-0060

Gottschall, Jonathan.  The storytelling animal: how stories make us human.  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012.  248p bibl  index  ISBN 9780547391403, $24.00  Sep’12, 50-0062

Colbert, Charles.  Haunted visions: spiritualism and American art.  Pennsylvania, 2011.  319p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780812243253, $49.95  Feb’12, 49-3087

Klein, Mason.  The radical camera: New York’s Photo League, 1936-1951, by Mason Klein and Catherine Evans; contributions by Maurice Berger, Michael Lesy, and Anne Wilkes Tucker.  Yale/Jewish Museum/Columbus Museum of Art, 2011.  248p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780300146875, $50.00  Apr’12, 49-4273

Photographic memory: the album in the age of photography, [ed.] by Verna Posever Curtis.  Aperture/Library of Congress, 2012.  287p bibl  index  ISBN 9781597111317, $75.00  Nov’12, 50-1292

Pinson, Stephen C.  Speculating Daguerre: art and enterprise in the work of L. J. M. Daguerre.  Chicago, 2012.  313p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780226669113, $65.00  Oct’12, 50-0695

McGonigal, Jane.  Reality is broken: why games make us better and how they can change the world.  Penguin, 2011.  396p index  ISBN 0143120611 pbk, $16.00  ISBN 9780143120612 pbk, $16.00  Jul’12, 49-6095

Meikle, Graham.  Media convergence: networked digital media in everyday life, by Graham Meikle and Sherman Young.  Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.  242p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780230228931, $85.00;  ISBN 9780230228948 pbk, $27.00  Aug’12, 49-6705

Szasz, Ferenc Morton.  Atomic comics: cartoonists confront the nuclear world.  Nevada, 2012.  179p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780874178746, $34.95;  ISBN 9780874178791 e-book, contact publisher for price  Dec’12, 50-1891

Davis, Andrew.  Baggy pants comedy: burlesque and the oral tradition.  Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.  288p bibl  index  ISBN 9780230116795, $90.00  Jul’12, 49-6165

Encyclopedia of creativityed. by Mark A. Runco and Steven R. Pritzker.  Elsevier/Academic Press, 2011.  2v bibl  index  ISBN 9780123750396, $400.00  Feb’12, 49-3009

Fitzpatrick, Kathleen. Planned obsolescence: publishing, technology, and the future of the academy.  New York University, 2011.  245p bibl  index  afp  ISBN 9780814727874, $75.00;  ISBN 9780814727881 pbk, $23.00;  ISBN 9780814728963 e-book, contact publisher for price.  Apr’12, 49-4188

Ross McElwee on Nov. 8th

picture of man with cameraThe University of Pennsylvania Cinema Studies Program and Tiger Strikes Asteroid Gallery are pleased to announce their collaboration on a month-long series of events celebrating the work of documentary filmmaker Ross McElwee. McElwee, whose critically acclaimed movies include Sherman’s March (1985), Time Indefinite (1993) and Bright Leaves (2003) will give a lecture and screen his latest work, Photographic Memory, on November 8th from 5 – 8 p.m. at the University of Pennsylvania, 401 Fisher-Bennett Hall. In related programming, Tiger Strikes Asteroid will present Force Fields, an exhibition curated by Jenny Jaskey and Alexis Granwell, from November 2 – December 15, 2012. The exhibition takes Ross McElwee’s films as a point of departure, bringing together artists for whom documentary plays an important role in their improvisational and process-driven works. The exhibited artists include Tamar Halpern, David Horvitz, and Jenny Perlin. And finally, on December 1, from 7 – 9 p.m. Herb Shellenberger will present a selection of works by local documentary filmmakers, along with performances by the artists Matt Kalasky, J. Makary and Jess Perlitz.

Ross McElwee is best known for his poignant documentaries that capture the relationships he shares with his family and those close to him. From these everyday encounters, McElwee examines broader themes ranging from politics to the passage of time, creating intimate portraits that simultaneously capture life’s biggest issues. Working in the cinema verite tradition, McElwee is a student of the incidental and unscripted moment, using his camera to reveal the profound truths they contain. McElwee is currently Professor in the Department of Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard University. His film Sherman’s March was winner of Best Documentary at the Sundance FIlm Festival and has been named among the top 20 best documentaries of all time. His latest film, Photographic Memory, premiered at the 2011 Venice Film Festival and is being shown to U.S. audiences for the first time this fall. For more information on Ross McElwee related programming, please contact: alexisgranwell@gmail. com.

Force Fields
Tamar Halpern, David Horvitz, Jenny Perlin
Curated by Alexis Granwell and Jenny Jaskey
November 2 – December 15, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday, November 2, 6-10pm
Hours: Saturday and Sunday, 2pm-6pm and by appointment
(484)-469-0319, tigerstrikesas
Ross McElwee’s new film, Photographic Memory, was also reviewed in NYT last week! 10/07/movies/ross-mcelwees- photographic-memory-captures- his-life.html