Le Figaro has been running a cool series of twelve articles—called "De la plume à l'écran" (From the pen to the screen)—by Philippe d'Hugues, dedicated to great (mostly) French authors whose books have been made into movies. This is interesting to me not only from the perspective of what French books are still out there for me to read (not surprisingly, a lot), but also as a survey of (mostly) French film:
- Simenon : le cinéma et la boulimie (Simenon: the cinema and bulimia), August 21
- Colette et les jeunes filles en fleurs (Colette and the young girls in blossom), August 20
- Conrad, une stimulante ambiguïté (Conrad, a stimulating ambiguity), August 19
- Tolstoï : menacé par l'académisme (Tolstoy, threatened by academicism), August 18
- Dostoïevski : l'impossible accompli (Dostoevsky, accomplishing the impossible), August 17
- Maupassant, au-delà de «Bel Ami» (Maupassant, beyond Bel-Ami), August 16
- Zola : abondance de chefs-d'oeuvre (Zola: abundance of masterpieces), August 14
- Dumas, tant qu'il y aura des films (Dumas, as long there are films), August 13
- Charles Dickens, l'autre Anglais (Charles Dickens, the other Englishman), August 12
- William Shakespeare et compagnie (William Shakespeare and company), August 11
- Balzac, inépuisable et ignoré (Balzac, inexhaustible and unknown), August 10
- Stendhal, intraduisible au cinéma ? (Stendhal, untranslatable in the cinema?), August 9
We have yet to mention the new ArtsBlogging project inaugurated by George Hunka and friends. I have the perfect excuse to do so now, by linking to George's recent post on the positions of American presidential candidates Bush and Kerry on the issue of government funding for the arts. Read the Ionarts Proposal to see what the candidate who will be assured of my vote should propose on this issue.
The story of the audacious theft of two of Edvard Munch's most famous paintings was very well covered this weekend. In case you missed it, two armed men removed The Scream and Madonna from the Munch-Museet in Oslo on Sunday, in broad daylight. After the first frenzied news reports, Marie-Douce Albert has published a more thorough consideration (L'incroyable vol du «Cri» de Munch, August 23) in Le Figaro. (I will also mention my post from December 9, 2003, Volcanic Atmosphere, Not Existential Angst?, on one scientist's theory why the colors in The Scream are so strange. As the image reproduced to the right makes clear, Munch's work has become iconic, which is probably one main reason it was stolen.)
An article (Paris: des projos gratuites aux Buttes Chaumont, August 21) from France 2 informs us of another outdoor cinema festival in Paris this summer, the Festival Silhouette, now in its third season in the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont.
Finally, we note with sadness the passing, on August 17, of the renowned French mélodie singer Gérard Souzay, eulogized in this article (Le baryton Gérard Souzay est décédé, August 21) from Le Nouvel Observateur. In addition to his pioneering work in the interpretation of the marvelous songs of his friend Francis Poulenc, he was an authority on the performance of German and French song.