On its 40th anniversary, iconic splatterpunk film The Texas Chain Saw Massacre has been restored with a new 4K transfer from the original 16mm film shot by director Tobe Hooper in 1974. A production of Dark Sky Films, the new print premieres at SXSW on Monday, March 10 with wide theatrical release over the summer.
"I haven't seen The Texas Chain Saw Massacre on the big screen for many, many years," Hooper says. "This 40th anniversary restoration is absolutely the best the film has ever looked. The color and clarity is spectacular, displaying visual details in the film that were never before perceptible. The newly remastered 7.1 soundtrack breathes new life and energy into the film. I am very much looking forward to audiences experiencing this film as they never have before".
Leatherface had no comment.
Above is the original glorious painting, artist unknown, used for the cover of the pseudonymous Warren Smith's 1970 book Strange Abominable Snowmen. Having been lost for decades, it recently turned up at a yard sale. I only wish I was the lucky duck who found it. Loren Coleman has the news along with a gallery of other fantastic cover art from vintage cryptozoology paperbacks of that era.
In 2010, Ed Fries, a former Microsoft VP of game publishing, programmed an Atari 2600 version of Halo. The game, titled Halo 2600, has now been added to the collection of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Smithsonian magazine interviewed Fries:
I don’t want to get too caught up in "Art" with a capital A in a sense, because then it becomes this whole kind of pointless argument about what is art to begin with. I think what matters is, can we tell human stories in a way that affect people—maybe change how they feel about themselves, or the world or exposes them to something that they haven’t been exposed to before? And in the game business, that simple thing is actually pretty hard. I mean, it’s taken us many years and a lot of technological advance to be able to make realistic characters on a screen that look like people, that don’t look like robots, that move like real people, that when they talk, the way their mouths move or eyes sparkle. You know, that doesn’t make you feel like you’re looking at a puppet—that makes you feel like you’re looking at a real human being. Once you get past that, then you open up the door to tell real stories about real people but in a way that’s different than a movie because the player’s in control. And that’s the promise for video games.
"Demaking Halo, Remaking Art: 'Halo 2600' Developer Discusses the Promise of Video Games
Above is the Centaur rocket, "America's Workhorse in Space," that NASA used in more than 200 missions, from Voyager to Viking, Cassini to New Horizons. To celebrate the Centaur's 50th anniversary, NASA and our friends at Ingenuity Cleveland are holding an art competition to creatively convey the unique engineering and features of the Centaur Program. The prizes include tours of NASA, viewing of rocket test-fires, and display at IngenuityFest 2014 and NASA Glenn Research Center. Artists of all disciplines and ages are encouraged to submit proposals or finished work! More details: NASA Centaur Art Challenge
I've posted previously about Reuben Margolin's beautiful large kinetic wave sculptures. Inspired by Margolin's work, Dean O'Callaghan created this exquisite tabletop hand-crank automata mimicking the ripple effect of a droplet falling into water. (Thanks, Jean Hagan!)
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Scouting New York visited the New York filming locations of The Godfather (1972) to see how they look today. Top, Don Corleone gunned down outside Genco (128 Mott Street), and that location now. "The New York Filming Locations of The Godfather, Then and Now" (via Laughing Squid)
A bedroom of books
, provenance unknown. From the inspiring Instagram feed of The Academy New York.
UPDATE: BB reader Bryan McGovern tells us that this is the library room at Mildred's Lane, an artists' residence and museum near Beach Lake, PA.
A python bested a crocodile in an epic battle at Lake Moondarra in Queensland, Australia. After the victory, the snake celebrated by eating his foe. More foodie photos by onlooker Marvin Muller at The Age.
A pelican knocked around by a storm near Tanzinia's Mahale Mountains was rescued and taught to fly again. Here's beautiful "beak-cam" footage of the soaring bird. (No, GoPro didn't pay us to post this clip.) (Thanks, Bob Pescovitz!)
Here's electronic music pioneer Bruce Haack appearing on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood in 1968 with experimental children's dance educator Esther Nelson. Two years later, Haack went on to compose the quintessentially strange electronic music/acid rock record The Electric Lucifer. If you're not hip to The Electric Lucifer, it's a concept album that employs an array of instrumentation including, Moogs, guitar, voice, and a DIY vocoder to tell an epic story of the battle between heaven and hell. It's was reissued on CD several years ago and is just now available on vinyl again too! Below, listen to the track "National Anthem to the Moon." The Electric Lucifer
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Walter Williams, 87, of Lexington, Mississippi was pronounced dead on Wednesday night. The coroner came to his home, did the paperwork, put him in a body bag, and transferred him to a funeral home. But then...
“We got him into the embalming room and we noticed his legs beginning to move, like kicking,” (coroner Dexter) Howard said. “He also began to do a little breathing.”
One possibility is that Williams's defibrillator fired up his heart after it had stopped. In any case, Williams is currently awake and talking in his hospital bed.
‘Dead man’ kicks his way out of body bag at funeral home
Richard Wiseman is the professor of Public Understanding of Psychology at the UK's University of Hertfordshire. He's the author of several books, including Paranormality: Why We See What Isn't There, was about the psychology of so-called supernatural experiences. His previous book, 59 Seconds: Change Your Life In Under A Minute, draws from the psychology of persuasion to present a series of (oft-counterintuitive) techniques and life hacks to improve memory, negotiate better, reduce stress, etc. It's a self-help book based on entertaining and fascinating scientific research. Above is one of many videos from Wiseman's fun "In 59 Seconds" YouTube channel.
59 Seconds: Change Your Life In Under A Minute (Amazon)
Happy Fangs is the punk pop duo formed last year by singer Rebecca Gone Bad (formerly of My First Earthquake) and guitarist Michael Cobra of King Loses Crown, plus drum machine. Their self-titled EP, released last year, is a raucous force of noisy guitar and anthemic vocals that thrill me like the late-1970s sounds of X-Ray Spex, Siouxsie, and Suburban Lawns. (Listen here!) Tonight, the band plays in their hometown of San Francisco at Slim's as part of Noise Pop 2014. Tickets available here. It'll be their first show with their new live drummer, Jess Gowrie. To celebrate, we're delighted to premiere this version of the slow-burning Happy Fangs track "Alone," remixed by Mercury Rev's Anthony Molina. Listen above. (Here's the original song.) And below, the video for the single "Lion Inside You," from the Happy Fangs EP.
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Etsy seller RandomPrefect cuts beautiful silhouettes from recycled vinyl records and sells them as bold, elegant necklaces. These are hand-cut (not laser cut or machined) and the designs include birds, hearts, butterflies, keys, skulls, and Star Wars and Star Trek icons! Most are priced around $20 or so. Custom shapes are also available! RandomPrefect (Thanks, Candy Mabry!)
In the 1950s, after Andy Warhol developed a solid commercial art reputation through his shoe advertisements, he was hired by RCA Records to do album art for LPs by the likes of Count Basie (above), Artie Shaw, and Thelonious Monk. See a bunch of them at Dangerous Minds.
You can also pick up your own original vinyl of Kenny Burrell's "Blue Lights" with the Warhol cover at eBay for just... $800.