Re: RARA-AVIS: Out of Sight

Mario Taboada (
Tue, 21 Jul 1998 06:22:51 -0400 Mark Sullivan on film audiences not "getting it" when there are temporal

<<Why do so many people have trouble with this?>>

Virtually no exposure to real films, and overdoing on bad movies and the
tube. Probably no exposure to challenging literature. I'm just

As an anecdote, over the years I noticed a very disturbing thing in the
classroom. I like my lectures to start with some surprising statement
and reach a closure only at the very end: the seed I plant at the
beginning bears fruit at the end in a non-obvious way; I found that my
"audiences" were finding it harder and harder to even *remember* what I
had said five minutes before, let alone see the significance of the
"seed" planted at the beginning. Thus, they had no idea of the origin or
the process that led to a particular mathematical result. A lot of
students nowadays seem to think in static images, often linked to verbal
ditties (like sound bites). Very disturbing and quite likely related to
people's difficulties with real cinematic technique (and I'm not talking
about Tarkovsky).

I must make this a hardboiled post, so I will say that I was very
disappointed with Michael Connelly's "Trunk Music", a tired effort that
is not in the same class as his previous books in the Bosch series. On
the other hand, Harold Adams's "A Perfectly Proper Murder", a historical
small-town yarn set in South Dakota in the 30s is a little gem, a
novella that would belong in the pulps if there were any such thing.
Over the years I have become very fond of Adams, who is a very enjoyable
(and incredibly concise and meticulous) author. This book and the style
of its author may possibly appeal to the fedora-persons in this list. It
was published by Walker.


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