“Robert Congel, a commercial real-estate developer who lives in upstate New York, has a plan to ”change the world.” Convinced that it will ”produce more benefit for humanity than any one thing that private enterprise has ever done,”
he is raising $20 billion to make it happen. That’s 12 times the yearly budget of the United Nations and more than 25 times Congel’s own net worth.
What Congel has in mind is an outsize and extremely unusual mega-mall. Destiny U.S.A., the retail-and-entertainment complex he is building in upstate New York, aspires to be not only the biggest man-made structure on the planet but also the most environmentally friendly. Equal parts Disney World, Las Vegas, Bell Laboratories and Mall of America — with a splash of Walden Pond — the ”retail city” will include the usual shops and restaurants as well as an extensive research facility for testing advanced technologies and a 200-acre recreational biosphere complete with springlike temperatures and an artificial river for kayaking.” (New York Times )
Obscene. Just skip the mall, skip the artificial river, and simply go out kayaking…
The French Remake a U.S. Film
: “I always thought Fingers
felt like a French film, anyway,’ says James Toback, who wrote and directed it and who now, 27 years later, is enjoying the strange experience of seeing Fingers
become French not just in feeling but in fact.
Jacques Audiard’s film The Beat That My Heart Skipped, which relocates Mr. Toback’s violent, willfully unstable psychodrama from 70’s New York to 21st-century Paris, has to be one of the unlikeliest remakes in the history of the movies, and not only because The Beat That My Heart Skipped, which opened Friday in New York and Los Angeles, is actually a strong picture in its own right. It’s also unusual in that the original film is not the sort of proven, marketable commodity that generally inspires (if that’s the word) the urge to remake: Fingers was a box-office flop in the United States, and although it attracted some critical enthusiasm in France, it quickly, Mr. Audiard says, ‘fell into a kind of purgatory’ – largely forgotten and rarely revived. And it’s practically unheard of for a French filmmaker to redo an American movie. Even the auteurs of the French New Wave maintained a reverential, hands-off attitude toward the work of their Hollywood idols; they contented themselves with homages, fleeting evocations of the manner, rather than the matter, of the movies they loved.” (New York Times )
Looking forward to this; I thought Fingers was a minor masterpiece when it came out.