Chris Malis

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Michel Gondry: Music videos and Noam Chomsky

Just as his new Metronomy video is unveiled, Michel Gondry shows his latest film at Berlin – an animated interview with philosopher Noam Chomsky.<p>“The world is a very puzzling place: if you’re not willing to be puzzled, you just become a replica of someone else’s mind.” So says American philosopher …

Noam Chomsky

Over Coming Decades, Wealthy Tax Dodgers Will Deprive The Government Of Trillions Of Dollars

Nearly $60 trillion will change hands over the next 55 years as Americans transfer their wealth to heirs and charities, according to a newly released …

Share if you agree. Image by Occupy Democrats.

An MTV Vet Remembers The Day Kurt Cobain Died

Photo: Stephen Sweet/REX USA.<i>The day John met Kurt.</i><p>It remains one of the most frequently asked questions regarding my time at MTV News — “What was it …

Kurt Cobain 'had nowhere to go musically' when he died

Kurt Cobain, who died 20 years ago, is rock's James Dean, says Neil McCormick<p>Twenty years ago, the body of <b>Kurt Cobain</b> was discovered, dead by his own hand in a brutal act of self-destruction, immediately launching Nirvana’s tortured leader into the pantheon of rock’s most iconic and tragic stars. …

Read Nirvana’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech

<i>In their first year of eligibility, Nirvana were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Thursday night at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. With</i> …

Eric Clapton’s Isolated Guitar Track From the Beatles’ ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ (1968)

George Harrison of the Beatles was an accomplished guitar player with a distinctive soloing style. So you might think that with a song as personal …

Ten films to look out for at Sundance

The Oscar nominations: What history says will win

Tom Hanks

Are the Oscars progressive on race?

Several smart films about racial issues were released in 2013, yet only one of them, 12 Years a Slave, has received major Academy Award nominations. Why?<p>Last year felt like a breakthrough. Lee Daniels’ The Butler, a film about an African-American who attended to several US presidents, not only drew …

Box Office

The Thin Men: Actors who starve themselves for an Oscar

Matthew McConaughey is the latest actor to emaciate himself in pursuit of awards glory. It’s an example of a disturbing trend, argues Lisa Schwarzbaum.<p>Matthew McConaughey looks awfully believable as a man dying from Aids in Dallas Buyers Club: haunted, weak, emaciated. Best known as a hunky movie …

Van Gogh’s Sunflowers: The unknown history

One of the Dutch artist’s most famous works is actually part of a series of sunflower paintings. Alastair Sooke shows how these masterpieces came to be.<p>Sometimes a work of art is so dazzlingly famous that it can blind people to its original context and meaning. That surely is the case with Vincent …

Art

Textual healing: Self-help books get smart

Books that claim to offer the answers to life’s challenges are big business – though many serious readers look down on them. But, as Lindsay Baker explains, the genre is seeing an intellectual resurgence.<p>The self-help book has long been ridiculed in literary circles – and not without reason. As a …

Sundance special: Steve Coogan on the Philomena effect

The actor tells Tom Brook about being taken seriously – and impersonating Tom Hardy in the sequel to The Trip.<p>“Before Philomena, I’d just been seen as the go-to British guy to put in a funny scene in your film,” says Steve Coogan in this interview with Tom Brook.<p>The British actor and comedian …

Steve Coogan

Why do the Grammy Awards get it wrong?

America’s biggest music awards are still hugely important for the boost they give artists. So, Greg Kot asks, why is their history littered with mistakes?<p>Love or hate them, the Grammy Awards are usually the one evening all year that most of America pays attention to music. It’s the sole music …

The divine Michelangelo

His works are iconic – but who is the man behind the myth? The artist’s early life reveals some clues.<p>Five hundred years ago, Michelangelo created three of the art world's greatest icons: the statue of David, the painted ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican and the dome of St. Peter's in …

Burns’ To A Mouse: The poem we love but few understand

Robert Burns’ To A Mouse is a poem loved by many – but few really understand it. On the anniversary of his birth, Fiona Macdonald examines its appeal.<p>Scottish poet Liz Lochhead is not one to idolise Robert Burns the man. “If he were alive today, he would be what we call a sex pest,” she says of her …

Literature

Gravity composer Steven Price: Music out of this world

Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity has been celebrated for its technical breakthroughs. But its music by is equally innovative, argues Clemency Burton-Hill. She sits down to talk with the film’s composer, Steven Price.<p>As Hollywood fairy tales go, it doesn’t get much more magical than the story of Steven …

Vinyl Records

20,000 Days on Earth: A new era for music documentaries

The standard rock doc has grown tired and stale. But new films like Nick Cave’s 20,000 Days on Earth are breathing fresh air into the genre, writes Emma Jones.<p>Laying bare his soul on the psychiatrist’s couch. Chatting to Kylie Minogue in the back seat of his car. Driving through the rain-washed …

Seven questions about Bob Dylan

The week’s best arts and culture reads – from the string quartets of Bartók to the elusive character of Bob Dylan.<p>Rediscovering Bartók’s Quartets<br>Philip Kennicott | New Republic | 27 January 2014<br>“There are moments in Bartók’s String Quartet number 1 when the gloom lifts, when the densely woven …

Where are all the protest songs?

The legendary folk singer Pete Seeger left behind a powerful legacy of political music. But who nowadays is left to continue the tradition? Greg Kot takes a look.<p>Seeger went down swinging. Even in his 90s, one of the godfathers of contemporary protest music was still working the crowd at an Occupy …

Bill Clinton

William S Burroughs: ‘The godfather of punk’ remembered

The Beat author scandalised literature with books like Naked Lunch. In honour of his centenary, his friends talk to Jane Ciabattari about his later years.<p>William S Burroughs was born 100 years ago on 5 February 1914. Descended from a well-to-do family from St Louis, Missouri, he was a Harvard …

New kids on the box: When The Beatles first hit US TV

When The Beatles appeared on the conservative Ed Sullivan Show they started a revolution. Ken Tucker explains why television was crucial to their success.<p>Whenever a Beatles milestone rolls around – the release of previously unavailable music on iTunes or the anniversary of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely …

Nymphomaniac: How hardcore is Lars von Trier’s latest?

The explicit film by Lars von Trier made headlines when it screened at the Berlin Film Festival. But what did those in the audience make of it?<p>Actor Shia LaBeouf hit the headlines on Sunday when he walked out of a news conference for Nymphomaniac at the Berlin Film Festival, later appearing on the …

Miloš Karadaglić: Classical guitar’s superstar

The 30-year-old musician is earning the instrument new fans and hard-won respect with a combination of charisma and skill, says Clemency Burton-Hill.<p>The superstar guitarist Miloš Karadaglić is gently chastising me for suggesting that his is an instrument that needs to be rescued from obscurity. …

Flute

Getting romantic again: Reviving the art of love

For centuries, love was one of the great subjects of Western art. Out of favour for a period, art about romantic love is making a comeback, says Jason Farago.<p>Love is a paradox. Its force, argues the philosopher Michael Hardt, derives from contradiction. On the one hand, love is an attachment: the …

Erotic tiles go on display – for one night only

Hidden fragments from graphic tiles that were found in 1962 are shown for the first time at the Museum of London.<p>A series of 18th Century erotic tiles, depicting graphic scenes, will go on display for the first time at a late-night Valentine’s Day event in the Museum of London.<p>The eight tiles are …

Museum of London

British invasions: How do UK bands break the US?

What makes a British band do well across the pond? Apart from talent and charisma, it’s all about economics and plain old hard work. Greg Kot explains why.<p>Before The Beatles busted their mop-top, Mersey-Beat moves on primetime television 50 years ago this month, Brits were invisible on the American …