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New Historical Fiction: Know Your Weapon – Know Yourself

The Old West fast-draw showdown in the middle of Main Street (often at high noon) has been a staple of the Western film genre since its beginning in the 1920s. Of course it almost never happened quite like that; and the closest we get to it was likely the first famous faceoff just a few months after the end of the Civil War – July 21, 1865 – upon the town square in Springfield, Missouri.

Dave and Jim were “frenemies.” Dave had fought for the Confederacy in an Arkansas regiment, while Jim had scouted for the Union. Nevertheless, they gambled, drank and caroused together, though their mutual spirit of competition and over-sized egos would often place them at opposing ends of the gaming table.

Guy Maddin’s Surrealist Madness

Deconstructing Canadian Culture, Part 17: The Saddest Music In The World

What do you do when confronted with the absurdity and meaninglessness of life? Peterson tries to make sense of things with Maps of Meaning and Rules for Life. Cronenberg chooses to exaggerate way, way past the most horrific boundaries imaginable. But Guy Maddin takes a different approach and leaps out the escape hatch into insanity.

Maddin can best be described as a hybrid of Dostoyevsky, Dali, Freud and Chaplin. He is the dark side of Findley and Davies, with their conventional narratives, their organized and rather dry Jungian taxonomy of archetypes. But then again Findley and Davies were representatives of Southern Ontario Gothic, where even the supernatural is peaceful and orderly. Maddin is from Winnipeg, Manitoba, a place buried by -40 C cold, hemmed in between rivers and lakes, split by railways going out in every direction, and the site of the General Strike of 1919, where 30,000 working men and women were crushed by the Northwestern Mounted Police, the fore-runners of those cheerful, helpful, red-coated Mounties.

PreTeena: February 18 – February 24, 2019

Sunday Comics!

You won’t want to miss these hilarious cartoons depicting the ups and downs of adolescence. Now each week’s strips will debut on Sundays as the lead strip of Liberty Island’s Sunday Comics feature. If you draw a comic and would like to have your work featured on Sundays, please contact us: [email protected]

Check out Allison Barrows’ new PreTeena blog here.

My 7 Favorite Sunset Shots from This Week

*Submit your photographs of nature and the outdoor life to [email protected] to participate in this weekly feature exploring the natural world.*

The Disney Sci-Fi Cartoon We All Forgot

“Treasure Planet” is a science fiction cartoon that was released in 2002. It ranks among Disney’s biggest flops. The question we should be asking is why.

It isn’t because Disney can’t do animated features, either. They have many billion dollar cartoons to prove the contrary point. The classic excuse is the animation style used in “Treasure Planet”, since the movie relied heavily on traditional animation plus some CGI. However, “Brother Bear” was mostly hand-drawn and earned about 250 million dollars the next year, so we can’t blame a lack of CGI.

“Wayne” on YouTube Red: New Media and the Same Old Crap

The Tropes they are a-samin’

Finally had some time to get back on mission, here. I’d been working hard on the final volume of my By the Hands of Men series and a relaunch of the entire set of books, so stealing a few moments to wallow in cultural dupery was beyond me (why, no, I’m not pimping my own books here, oh no, I never).

When I had a chance to sit down and take the pulse of current culture dupery, as presented by those Delphic Oracles lurking in the mists of the Internet and Cable, I beheld unto myself a new series called “Wayne.”

David Cronenberg’s Silent Hell

Deconstructing Canadian Culture, Part 16: The Awkward Quiet

The scariest thing in a David Cronenberg film isn’t the chilling body-horror practical effects or the strangely stilted performances. It’s the long, awkward stretches of quiet.

Watch Naked Lunch, Scanners, or The Dead Zone and pay attention to the background music or lack thereof. A Cronenberg film doesn’t need to rely on creepy strings or jump-scare stings. More so than anyone in our series so far – yes, even Jordan Peterson – Cronenberg’s films are distillations of the nihilistic, the amoral, and the meaningless, presented (for the most part) without ornamentation.

There is blood, and there is gore, and there are transformations into fly-men, and all of these are great selling points for a film trailer. But these concessions to traditional horror are never the point of a Cronenberg film. The point is that the characters were already monsters, and the only thing that has changed is that now they look like monsters.

PreTeena: February 11 – February 17, 2019

Sunday Comics!

You won’t want to miss these hilarious cartoons depicting the ups and downs of adolescence. Now each week’s strips will debut on Sundays as the lead strip of Liberty Island’s Sunday Comics feature. If you draw a comic and would like to have your work featured on Sundays, please contact us: Submi[email protected] Check out Allison Barrows’ new PreTeena blog here.

2 Chickens in the Snow

*Submit your photographs of nature and the outdoor life to [email protected] to participate in this weekly feature exploring the natural world.*

Why Wall-E Is a Cute Post-Apocalyptic Movie No Matter How It Goes

“Wall-E” is arguably the cutest post-apocalyptic movie ever. It is clear that the environmental disaster forced humanity to flee the Earth. We don’t see billions dead, though they’re likely under the trash, because there is no way humanity could build more than a modest armada. We don’t see an armada. We only see the Axiom. One ship with a few thousand people is the remnant of the human ra

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