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Rhaomi (2)

Who is that man?

Perhaps you've seen a shorter version of Heineken's commercial "The Odyssey" on television. If you haven't seen the full-length piece, or if you haven't watched closely, you may not realize that the lead role is played by 20 different men, each "legendary" in his own way. Heineken has created an interactive version of the short advertising film, allowing you to click on each non-actor to see his casting interview. (Or you can just let it play and watch each man in his turn.) [total time ~48m] [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Apr 24, 2014 - 18 comments

Dust and Echoes

The world of video game music has blossomed in recent years, enough to support live concert tours and bestselling albums. But while most such work is licensed or contracted out to third-party composers, a rare breed make their living at a single company, imbuing entire franchises with their unique sound. And apart from Nintendo's venerable Koji Kondo, there is perhaps no dedicated gaming composer more renowned than Martin O'Donnell. From humble beginnings writing the jingle for Flintstones Vitamins, O'Donnell and longtime collaborator Michael Salvatori joined developer Bungie in 1997, penning music for Myth, Oni, and most notably the Halo trilogy -- an iconic blend of sweeping orchestral bombast, haunting choirs, and electronic ambience that became one of the most acclaimed and successful gaming soundtracks of all time. O'Donnell also helmed Bungie's audio department, managing voice actors, sound effects, and an innovative dynamic music engine, and was most recently working with Paul McCartney on the score for the upcoming Destiny. So it came as a surprise today when it was announced MartyTheElder was being terminated without cause (flabbergasted reaction: HBO/DBO - NeoGAF - Reddit). With O'Donnell following Joseph Staten, Frank O'Connor, Marcus Lehto, and other Bungie veterans out the door, what might this mean for the company and its decade-long plan for Destiny? [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Apr 16, 2014 - 28 comments

Achilles sat on the shore and looked out to the wine-dark sea

That Homer used the epithet "wine-dark" to describe the sea in the Iliad and Odyssey so puzzled 19th Century English Prime Minister William Gladstone that he thought the Ancient Greeks must have been colorblind. Since then many other solutions have been proposed. Scientists have argued that Ancient Greek wine was blue and some scholars have put forward the case that Homer was describing the sea at sunset. Radiolab devoted a segment to the exploration of this issue, saying that Gladstone was partly right. Another interpretation is that the Ancient Greeks focused on different aspects of color from us. Classicist William Harris' short essay about purple in Homer and Iliad translator Caroline Alexander's longer essay The Wine-like Sea make the case for this interpretation.
posted by Kattullus on Aug 12, 2013 - 108 comments

Five Feet of Books

"During his days as Harvard’s influential president, Dr. Charles W. Eliot made a frequent assertion: If you were to spend just 15 minutes a day reading the right books, a quantity that could fit on a five-foot shelf, you could give yourself a proper liberal education. Publisher P. F. Collier and Son loved the idea and asked Eliot to compile and edit the right collection of works. The result: a 51-volume series of classic works from world literature published in 1909 called Dr. Eliot’s Five Foot Shelf, which would later be called The Harvard Classics." (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 11, 2013 - 89 comments

45 years ago, the future visited us...

The stewardess who retrieved a sleeping passenger's floating pen. The man in the ape suit who howled at the monolith. Arthur C. Clarke, recalling how he thought Stanley Kubrick was wrong, back in the day, about HAL being able to read lips, but later, aware that computers were developing such ability, admitting that he had been wrong. This and much more in The Making of Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. Meanwhile, from Douglas Trumbull, here's Creating Special Effects for 2001: A Space Odyssey. And here, full to bursting with interesting info, is the IMDb trivia page for 2001: A Space Odyssey. Why all this? Well, it's in honor of the 45th anniversary of the film's world premiere. Thank you for the masterpiece, Mr. Kubrick.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Apr 3, 2013 - 30 comments

You shall Hear things, Wonderful to tell

A decade on, the Coen brothers' woefully underrated O Brother, Where Art Thou? [alt] is remembered for a lot of things: its sun-drenched, sepia-rich cinematography (a pioneer of digital color grading), its whimsical humor, fluid vernacular, and many subtle references to Homer's Odyssey. But one part of its legacy truly stands out: the music. Assembled by T-Bone Burnett, the soundtrack is a cornucopia of American folk music, exhibiting everything from cheery ballads and angelic hymns to wistful blues and chain-gang anthems. Woven into the plot of the film through radio and live performances, the songs lent the story a heartfelt, homespun feel that echoed its cultural heritage, a paean and uchronia of the Old South. Though the multiplatinum album was recently reissued, the movie's medley is best heard via famed documentarian D. A. Pennebaker's Down from the Mountain, an extraordinary yet intimate concert film focused on a night of live music by the soundtrack's stars (among them Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Chris Thomas King, bluegrass legend Dr. Ralph Stanley) and wryly hosted by John Hartford, an accomplished fiddler, riverboat captain, and raconteur whose struggle with terminal cancer made this his last major performance. The film is free in its entirety on Hulu and YouTube -- click inside for individual clips, song links, and breakdowns of the set list's fascinating history. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 22, 2011 - 107 comments

Ulysses 31 Redux

Ulysses 31 Redux (YT) is a shot-for-shot remake of the opening credits of Ulysses 31, the Franco-Japanese sci-fi retelling of The Odyssey (and perhaps high water mark of 80s children's television). The remake was directed by Dermot Canterbury.
posted by running order squabble fest on Nov 23, 2011 - 28 comments

On First Looking into Lovecraft's Homer

A Cyclops' cave the wanderers brave
And find much milk & cheese
But as they eat, foul death they meet
For them doth Cyclops seize.

From The Young Folks' Ulysses [PDF], by H. Lovecraft, poet, aged seven. One of the "freely available editions of obscure, outlandish and otherwise outré works of semi-fine literature" from the electric publishing wing of kobek.com.
posted by Iridic on Mar 28, 2011 - 8 comments

Tweeting Operations in Odyssey Dawn

One Dutch radio geek is monitoring the airwaves for information about Operation Odyssey Dawn—and tweeting the surprisingly-detailed results.
posted by Fiasco da Gama on Mar 20, 2011 - 37 comments

English Translations of Homer

A huge number of English translations of the Iliad and Odyssey, many available in full text. I would just add to the list Chapman's Iliad available in full-text on Google Books and Logue's War Music available in preview.
posted by Paquda on Jan 19, 2011 - 29 comments

Nikos Kazantzakis

They think of me as a scholar, an intellectual, a pen-pusher. And I am none of them. When I write, my fingers get covered not in ink but in blood. I think I am nothing more than this: an undaunted soul. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Nov 24, 2010 - 9 comments

Simon says. Red. Green. Blue. Yellow.

Ralph Baer was just inducted into the United States Patent Office's National Inventors Hall of Fame. His favorite of his own inventions is the microcomputer controlled game Simon - a device almost as ubiquitous as Rubik's Cubes were in the 80's.

In 1966, Baer patented a revolutionary device - first video game system. The system was made commercially available in 1972 as the Magnavox Odyssey. The Odyssey system inlcuded an optical gun for shooting dots on the screen almost twenty years before Nintendo released Duck Hunt... [more inside]
posted by cinemafiend on May 7, 2010 - 18 comments

found: keys to davy jones' locker

Is salvaging sunken treasure a form of piracy or the preservation of history? Does commercial for-profit exploration of historical shipwrecks taint the historical legacy of these naval graveyards? Who owns the treasures lost for so many centuries? Marine archeology is testing its legal limits with one man's work. [previous]
posted by infini on Jun 5, 2009 - 25 comments

HMS Victory Discovered

World's Mightiest Ship Was Lost Without a Trace in 1744 "In July 1744, she set sail to rescue a Mediterranean convoy blockaded by the French Brest fleet in the River Tagus at Lisbon. After victoriously chasing the French fleet away, she escorted the convoy into the Mediterranean Sea as far as Gibraltar, then set sail to return to her home port in England. During the course of the voyage, her fleet captured a number of valuable prizes, and she was also reported to have taken on board a consignment of 400,000 pounds sterling for Dutch merchants. On her return trip to England, HMS Victory was lost with all hands in a violent storm on October 5, 1744." [pdf] [more inside]
posted by tellurian on Feb 11, 2009 - 11 comments

Throwing bones in the air as 2001 turns 40

Throwing bones in the air as 2001 turns 40. Stanley Kubrick's film, 2001: A Space Odyssey turned 40 yesterday and Movie City Indie collated a good selection of links about the film and its maker to commemorate the occasion. [more inside]
posted by slimepuppy on Apr 3, 2008 - 39 comments

To Erebus

ObitFilter: Robert Fagles. One of the few men to tackle translating The Iliad, The Odyssey, and The Aeneid, Robert Fagles has died. All of his translations were fast-paced, vibrant renderings that turned the classics once again into best-sellers.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll on Mar 30, 2008 - 30 comments

Duck-dragons, dancing raccoons, and robots

Inspired by this earlier post, I thought it was time to formally introduce people to Rocky's Boots. [more inside]
posted by wanderingmind on Mar 28, 2008 - 12 comments

The Winedark Sea 2.0

Sing in me, Muse, and through me tell the story of how the language of Odysseus and his people found a home on the web. Of how the newest mass medium came to house a library of Ancient Greek literature. Of how the sounds of a dead language could find a new life online.
posted by jason's_planet on Nov 2, 2006 - 19 comments

Odysseus's tomb found?

The tomb of Odysseus may have been found on the island of Kefalonia, near the island now known as Ithaca, which means that Poros may have been the Ithaca described in The Odyssey.
posted by cerebus19 on Sep 26, 2005 - 31 comments

Heading into faggotland...

Babyface: A Times Square Odyssey "This interactive web piece about the Babyfaces of Times Square takes place in the past, when the center city was a clash of classes rather than today's funeral of a theme park controlled by middle class undertakers." This is definitely not safe for work (drugs, porn, men in bathroom stalls), but if you want to remember the seedier side of NYC, this is one way to do it.
posted by WolfDaddy on Aug 6, 2004 - 6 comments

The dark came swirling down across his eyes

Click -- MeFites, click the link of Wolfgang's new endeavor,
murderous, doomed, that cast as Achaeans countless actors,
hurling down to the House of Death so many sturdy souls,
blonde-tressed, open-helmed *. Will careers be made carrion,
feasts for the dogs and birds,
as the time of Bush is moving toward its end?
Begin, crows, when the trailers first were aired,
Agamemnon, some guy, and Brad Pitt, Achilles.

[a wee bit more inside]
posted by mwhybark on Apr 29, 2004 - 53 comments

Gone to hit the highway

Highway Ulysses is a new play premiering at Boston's American Repertory Theatre. Playwright/composer Rinde Eckert and ART artistic director/Sam Shepherd's regular director Robert Woodruff have collaborated on an envigorating new play with music about a Vietnam vet on a road trip to find his son that parallels Homer's Odyssey. The ART's website is similarly informative and engaging as it points out the frightening timeliness of The Odyssey in the current world. (more inside)
posted by pxe2000 on Mar 17, 2003 - 8 comments

Was the Gospel of Mark a rewrite of Homer's Iliad and Odyssey? The Homeric Epics and the Gospel of Mark is a book that sets out to show just that. Several scholars who reviewed or commented on it have said this book will revolutionize the field of Gospel studies and profoundly affect our understanding of the origins of Christianity. Will it?
posted by willnot on Feb 20, 2002 - 31 comments

Success!

Success! Mars Odyssey 2001 is in orbit around Mars.
posted by rosvicl on Oct 24, 2001 - 7 comments

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