WEST SIDE STORY

WEST SIDE STORY

West Side Story is history, let me play on words.

History of cinema even for those who are not fond of musicals.

Do you like musicals?

They are perhaps the most controversial kind of movies: either you hate it, or you love it.

I love it.

In case you have any doubts, I suggest you to read this post on the blog Come cerchi sull’acqua

West Side Story was born as a play on Broadway and Jack Gottlieb tells us how it was conceived by drawing inspiration from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and how Jerome Robbins had initially imagined Juliet as a Jewish girl and Romeo as an Italian Catholic. The action, set during the Easter / Passover season, was supposed to take place on the Lower East Side of New York City. So the title could have been EAST Side Story or Gangway.

I find it totally understandable that Steven Spielberg said it was the toughest film of his career. 

I started looking at it together with all the positive assumptions, and with all the curiosity to find out how the arduous challenge had been solved.

The beginning shows the imminent demolition of the neighborhood and, personally, I interpreted it as the metaphor of a breaking wrecking ball but not about the past.

Time is to be demolished.

Because despite all the years that have passed, studded with dramatic events, it is as if history had been written today.

And Rita Moreno becomes like a fulcrum of human suffering, around which the repeated cyclically recurring pain manifests itself despite the passage of time.

In this video she receives the Oscar for the interpretation of the character of Anita in 1962

 

And following is the post with which she congratulates Ariana DeBose for the recent victory for having played the role of Anita, differently and yet with equal effectiveness.

For Rita Moreno in Spielberg’s film the role of Valentina was created: Doc’s widow, who helps and supports Tony after his misadventures with justice, but in various interviews she has been defined as the “mother” of West Side Story for how she advised, assisted, supervised tirelessly.

And obviously all of this entered my heart.

Not to mention her iconic joke for me: Tony asks her to translate “forever” because she wants to declare herself to Maria in Spanish and she, frightened by that tragically unreal idea of absolute, replies something like “why don’t I just say I’d like to have a coffee with you?”

Eh!

Undoubtedly, it is still an important statement, right!?

And while drinking your coffee, I once again recommend you the detailed and professional analysis of Matavitatau

Is there a particular song you prefer from the West Side Story soundtrack?

They are all songs destined to stay in your mind once you listen to them, but, just to name three sensationally super famous, are you more for Tonight, Maria, or America?

KEEP CALM WE HAVE HEART

KEEP CALM WE HAVE HEART

Keep calm we have heart is the title of a solo exhibition at the municipality of San Severo by the artist Gianni Pitta

San Severo is a place that has impressed me reading Giovanni Rinaldi‘s books, in which certainly the heart is not lacking.

In this case, however, it is about the heart understood in an artistic sense, I quote verbatim: Keep calm we have heart, wants to re-propose the central theme of the heart as a symbol, but also as a language, as a thought whose purpose is mainly to be of hope, of love and not only an amplifier of torment, a consequence of this human malaise.

We undoubtedly need a lot of heart and hope, particularly in this period.

And I found myself thinking about the times when I happened to draw a heart: my hearts were always imperfect, asymmetrical, sometimes just unbalanced.

Yet perhaps they were truer, like this: crooked and squashed.

And if we also try to write heart in a different way, we get for example heArt which is a social platform dedicated to art, born in 2021 with the intention of giving visibility and sharing to artists. .

Did you already know it?

Remaining in the artistic field, HOW MANY times could we quote heart?

What is the first heart that comes to your mind?

HOUSE OF GUCCI

HOUSE OF GUCCI

The Gucci family has repeatedly dissociated itself from the portrait that the film portrays, and I will not go into the merits, but now I can finally say that Lady Gaga in the House of Gucci is truly credible, for the vision I had of it.

So, taking up the talk on Patrizia Reggiani, apparently Lady Germanotta’s decision not to meet her did not affect the interpretation, despite Reggiani being annoyed.

Obviously I observed clothes, accessories, and outfits in general, with particular interest both for Gucci pieces and for 80s looks, and I have to say that I enjoyed the work of costume designer Yanti Yates.

Very scrupulous work, starting from months of study in the archives of the Gucci maison.

In an interview with the New York Times,  available in full on Instagram, Yanti Yates stated that Lady Gaga was hugely involved, not least because she is a complete clotheshorse and looks marvelous in everything. She was hugely focused on how her character might appear at a particular moment, and had very strong views on aspects like hair and makeup.

But also difficult work, again according to the statements made during the interview: I would create initial selections, and then she would select from there.

Gaga selected.

It also seems that there have been days when for her it was “not today.”

Moreover, the same Gucci website reports as an iconic statement from Yanti Yates: “Lady Gaga told me that in this movie she wanted to dress like her Italian mom. To create her looks, I was able to draw on both her personal and historical Gucci archives.”

Like her Italian mom

How good does this sentence sound?

At the same time, however, I have this doubt that is spinning in my head, so help me understand if my perception is deceiving me since, actually, in the early 70s despite I wasn’t really in the world from longer (also now I am not, but this is a other story).

Unfortunately I could not find the image of the scene in which Maurizio Gucci introduces Patrizia to his father Rodolfo, but more or less the same goes for the floral dress in this picture.

Obviously I’m nobody to question the reconstruction, which in all other situations I have admired, and I stress it well, but the idea of this dress leaves me perplexed. I’m wrong, right?

I leave you this roundup of outfits.

In addition to the clothes, House of Gucci offers the vision of a fantastic series of precious “vintage” cars.

In particular, I really loved the way director Ridley Scott frames the arrivals at Rodolfo Gucci’s home: focused on the entrance. From the outside to the outside.

This shot occurs more than once in the movie, with different cars arriving in front of that entrance.

For me it was a sort of “story within history,” almost a symbol to mark the time.

In the picture below, with the same principle, in contrast we are witnessing a departure.

Which is also a beginning: the beginning of a strategy for Maurizio being back in the company.

For the rest, I refer you to the review by Matavitatau, me, a bit like Cruella, I really enjoyed the non-original soundtrack.

As for the floral dresses, I felt a sort of temporal disorientation that in some cases conquered me, in others it left me a kind of question mark.

For example, I liked the choice for George Michael’s Faith as soundtrack of the wedding scene: despite the anachronistic incongruity, it gave me a joyfulness that counterbalanced the void created by the absence of Maurizio’s family.

On the contrary, I was perplexed listening to Ritornerai by Bruno Lauzi as the background to the scene in which Aldo Gucci goes with Maurizio and Patrizia to the estate where their historic breeding is located. The song is wonderful, ça va sans dire, and the meaning is centered on returning to the origins, but for my personal perception it is as if something screeches.

Apart from that, I could list one song more beautiful than the other, and I would like to propose them all: Here comes the rain again by Eurythmics, Heart of glass by Blondie, Ashes to ashes by the White Duke David Bowie, Blue Monday by New Order, Una notte speciale by Alice, Sono bugiarda by Caterina Caselli, but also Largo al factotum from Il Barbiere di Siviglia by Rossini, Madame Butterfly and much more.

As you choose which one you prefer to listen to first, here are some coffees.

And… the final blessing.

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TODAY TO EARN YOUR PLACE IN THIS CROWDED WORLD?

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TODAY TO EARN YOUR PLACE IN THIS CROWDED WORLD?

What have you done today to earn your place in this crowded world?

The character played by John Cusack asks this question to everyone in Utopia.

In naming Utopia my first association of thought is Thomas More.

Among other things, remaining in the field of cinematographic fiction, Thomas More is mentioned in Leonardo’s Cinderella played by Drew Barrymore, for example.

But I discovered that Utopia is also a movie about Australian Aborigines, and seeing the painful trailer let think that situation has stopped at the time as told by Baz Luhrmann.

Utopia however is in any expression of thought.

It is art, as described in this comment, it’s a song by Björk, it is not for The Offspring, it’s even a video game.

Utopia is a controversial Channel 4 series  then revised for an Amazon production by an exceptional showrunner: Gillian Flynn, author of Gone Girl and screenwriter by David Fincher, who appears in three different cameos, and disseminates various Easter eggs.

Utopia thus becomes a graphic novel. Viral …

A weird group of fans in search of this mysterious “comic” to be interpreted by riddles, find themselves catapulted into a reality that prefigures dystopia rather than Utopia.

Comics to tell the truth not really, it is a series of drawings by the artist Joao Ruas: some of the inspirations behind his work are the dawn of mankind, folklore, magical realism, the concept of wabi-sabi (侘寂) and human conflict.

Gillian Flynn, in an interview with the New York Times said: “I think it’s a Rorschach  test … It’s a show designed to let you find what you want from it, and have different points of view, which is exactly where we are right now.

Speaking of points of view, John Cusack, in his first role in a series, plays Kevin Christie … but rather than my Agatha, it is inspired by well-known characters of a completely different genre.

Those who follow him have the opportunity to know how much John has a certain aversion to some of Mr. Christie’s alter egos, which is why it was a cathartic interpretation.

In his interview published by The Guardian in addition to defining himself a kind of Cassandra, he gave me an amazing ending!

Cusack rubs his tired eyes. He drinks from his big tin tankard of coffee. (!) Who knows, he says? “Maybe being outspoken hurts your career… I’m just aware it helps me sleep better at night, knowing that I wasn’t passive during this time.”

After all, isn’t such an awareness already a kind of Utopia for many of us?

How do you see Utopia?

An exceptional admirer saw Utopia like this:

Stephen King writes:
I’m loving UTOPIA, on Amazon Prime. Might not be everyone’s cup of tea, given the times we’re living in, but it has the slow build to full steam that I associate with page-turning novels. Horrifying, violent, and occasionally laugh-out-loud funny.

And what song goes with the trailer?

It’s the end of the world as we know it.
R.E.M

But this world, how should it be earned every day in your opinion?

I would rather ask: what have you done today to improve this world?

Even if to tell the truth I would be without answers …

MEMORY OF WATER

MEMORY OF WATER

If vibration is energy, than resonance is the reverberation of energy, and resonance is thus capable of relaying energy.”

These words of Masaru Emoto contain the essence of his studies on the memory of water.

Did you already know this theory?
When Massimo told me about it, I was literally enchanted.

Music, as I have already written, for me is energy and constitutes an essential component.

Even water is a a very important element that in my case takes the form of the link with the sea.

But how do they combine?

Masaru Emoto undertook extensive research of water around the planet, not so much as a scientific researcher, but more from the perspective of an original thinker. At length, he realized that it was in the frozen crystal form, that water showed us its true nature.

How? By freezing water samples previously exposed to music of various kinds and subsequently observing the crystals.

It even sounds like a fairy tale right?
It strikes with all the delicacy of the Japanese universe and their attitude, which I sincerely envy.

Listening to this interview I have been impressed by some passages, for example when he declares: “I feel I have a lot in common with Don Quixote.”

Or when he speaks of Japanese spiritual tradition and HADO: literally the crest of the wave, which represents precisely the energetic vibration that is transformed into the memory of water.

Wonderful.

However, I must also say that personally, considering Japan and water, my thoughts cannot help but run on the dramatic situation in Fukushima  and the imminent running out of time left for the tanks.

Also for this reason, Dr. Emoto’s intent to dedicate himself to children, who do not have the negative imprinting of adults, is even more precious through his Peace Project.

How to blame him?

And it seems we can not be wrong even with regard to his studies on which a double-blind test was carried out to reconfirm.

What do you think about it?

On the emotional wave of this way of music materializing into crystals, I then found myself reflecting on another wonderful moment in which music impresses the memory: pregnancy.

In this regard, I would be SO happy if someone wanted to tell me their experience.

I have always made our son listen to music: before he was born and also after. On the type of music, perhaps I was not very orthodox …

In this regard, I found Dr. Alexandra Lamont‘s thesis: senior lecturer in music psychology at Keele University, according to which children can remember things from the uterus much longer than we thought.

The University of Leicester research study reported by NewScientist explains that:

Psychologist Alexandra Lamont found that year-old babies still recognised and had a preference for musical pieces that were played to them before being born. Previous studies have only shown babies being familiar with pre-birth experiences when they were a few days old.
Lamont had thought the children might develop a taste for the style of music played by their mothers, but this was not true. Instead, she was surprised to find that the babies could discriminate and remember individual songs.

By Alexandra Lamont I also found a World Café participatory discussion “coincidences? I do not think so …”

A part from jokes, what music would you like to crystallize in your memory?

FOUR BOOKS ON MATHEMATICS AND SEVEN SHORT PHYSICS LESSONS

FOUR BOOKS ON MATHEMATICS AND SEVEN SHORT PHYSICS LESSONS

Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas.
Albert Einstein

Mathematics = one of the most difficult subjects for many people, while for someone it is a “cup of tea.”
Which category do you belong to?

These books, for which I sincerely thank Franca, Vincenzo and Francesco, although very different from each other, fit the concept expressed by Einstein.

1. UNCLE PETROS AND THE GOLBACH CONGECTURE

Now Stellan Skarsgard talking about Hardy and Ramanujan to Robin Williams in Good Will Hunting makes sense to me too.

 

A book on mathematics but also the book on the life of a man who has to deal with his obsession.

2. HAPPY MATHEMATICS

My dear kids, I have written this book for you …
so the author addresses the readers, the students, his children.

I was struck by these words, which apparently have nothing striking, which could be attributable to many professors in fact, but which I read differently considering that Angelo Luigi Fiorita lost his children during a bombing on Alessandria on April 5, 1945

3. MATHEMATICS AMAZING AND POETRY

 

Here we pass from the colloquial tone and expressly dedicated to children, to a vision of mathematics as humanism, it is no coincidence that Bruno D’Amore also graduated in philosophy.

Do you know the concept of Technoracy?
Technoracy is conscious familiarity with technology, the operational aspects of which are, in most cases, inaccessible to the common person. But the basic ideas behind technological tools, their potential and the dangers they entail, the moral principles underlying the use of technology are essential issues to be spread among children from an early age. History shows us that ethics and moral values are closely linked to technological progress. The three preceding aspects together constitute what is essential for being a citizen in a world that is rapidly moving towards a planetary civilization. “

4. ROCK MATHEMATICS

My favorite, ça va sans dire …
I discovered some great information!
Of course, mathematics in this light is completely different!
Above all, I would mention Kate Bush

the lyrics of this song really include the Pi π up to the 78th decimal and then from the 101st to the 137th albeit with a slight difference.
You can listen to her own voice explaining the reason during an interview with the BBC.

I really like the challenge of singing numbers, as opposed to words because numbers are so unemotional as a lyric to sing and it was really fascinating singing that. Trying to sort of, put an emotional element into singing about…a seven…you know and you really care about that nine. I find numbers fascinating, the idea that nearly everything can be broken down into numbers, it is a fascinating thing; and i think also that we are completely surrounded by numbers now, in a way that we weren’t you know even 20, 30 years ago we’re all walking around with mobile phones and numbers on our foreheads almost; and it’s like you know computers…
I suppose, um, I find it fascinating that there are people who actually spend their lives trying to formulate pi; so the idea of this number, that, in a way is possibly something that will go on to infinity and yet people are trying to pin it down and put their mark on and make it theirs in a way I guess also i think you know you get a bit a lot of connection with mathematism and music because of patterns and shapes…

But obviously the book talks about much, much more starting from a large study on the Beatles to get to Queen, Led Zeppelin, Radiohead, Genesis, Coldplay… well… #stylerock

Paolo Alessandrini has a blog and a youtube channel, listen to this reading of an excerpt to understand how from mathematics we go to rock to get to concepts such as self-referentiality, art, Escher

A fascinating and interesting all-round journey that can only focus on poetry or cinema as well.

There is therefore also mention of A Dream within a Dream by Edgar Allan Poe

All that we see or seem
is but a dream within a dream

these verses, together with a passage from Marginalia were read by Orson Welles for Alan Parson’s Project: Tales of mystery and imagination, which, as often happens with the true genius, was only able to materialize later, but that’s another story.

and finally
SEVEN SHORT PHYSICS LESSONS

“What place do we, human beings who perceive, decide, laugh and cry, in this great fresco of the world offered by contemporary physics? If the world is teeming with ephemeral quanta of space and elementary particles, what are we? We are also made only of quantum and particles? But then where does that feeling of existing individually and in the first person that each of us feel? So what are our values, our dreams, our emotions, our own knowledge? What are we, in this boundless and glowing world? “

Carlo Rovelli asks a rather difficult question.
Do you want to try to answer yourself?

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