A Movie Log

A blog formerly known as Bookishness

By Charles Matthews

Saturday, September 5, 2009

What I'm Watching

Howl's Moving Castle
What is it about the Japanese imagination? I'm thinking not only about Hayao Miyazaki but also about Haruki Murakami, whose stories have that same random brilliance, that ability to take the story in unforeseen directions. Americans fret about coherence and continuity, about setting up gags and delivering the payoff, but there's something more free and unfettered about Miyazaki's narrative and visualizations. And the characters -- Howl, the Witch of the Waste, even Sophie -- have an unpredictability about them, an ambiguity in their motives and attitudes that would have been edited out of them in an American story conference.

How Google Screwed Up Book Search

Geoff Nunberg on how Google fumbled its grand project:
Google has taken a group of the world's great research collections and returned them in the form of a suburban-mall bookstore.