July 24, 2014

In “Peace Arch,” the title track off Emily Danger’s forceful EP, the lead singer Emily Nicholas sings, “My words must be heard.” And with that voice, it’s impossible not to. We’re happy to premiere the video for the track, where  the New York-based rockers dramatically perform a song that manages to somehow be soaring and subterranean, much like the video. Interchanging between a hazy, abyss-like stage and a celestial, bed of clouds, video’s dual aesthetic is summarized in the band’s thesis:

Below: We have war, and darkness. We take issue with the light and deny all hope of retribution. Above: Hope lays on a bed of clouds. She is light, she is all things pure and honest. She wants nothing more than to rest, but cannot for fear that we will destroy all that is beautiful.

Photo by Inez and Vinoodh

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July 24, 2014

Here it is, the moment that some people but not everyone has been waiting for: the first full trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey. It features an extended version of that druggy redo of “Crazy in Love” that Beyonce teased a few days ago, and it gives you a glimpse at the chemistry between its much discussed and fairly inexperienced two leads, Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan. The trailer spends most of its time setting up its central relationship–we do not get a glimpse at Rita Ora’s acting debut–and only at the end does it give us a hint at what’s to come: hardcore fucking bondage. Check it out!

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July 21, 2014

The world awaits with breath that is bated for new music from Lorde, but so far besides some vague references to new material, there’s no concrete timeline for it. Lucky for us then that Diplo just hit us with pretty much the next best thing. It’s called “Tennis Court (Diplo’s Andrew Agassi Remix),” and it takes the first track off Lorde’s debut album Pure Heroine and laces it with elastic synths and chopped up drums, enough to transform the song from gloomy ballad to a bouncy summer jam. Listen to it below. 

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July 18, 2014

It’s the eternal question: What is cool? To us cool is a grainy video of Justin Bieber roller dancing to a Lady Gaga song, but the New York-based fashion and lifestyle platform The Cools decided to take the investigation deeper by asking six New Yorkers for their interpretations of what cool is. Their findings are in the video below, and if we’re being totally honest, it’s making us rethink our earlier position.

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July 18, 2014

The battle to become our favorite Franco just took a massive swing in Dave‘s direction, after an appearance on Conan last night in which the budding movie star took to Tinder with Conan O’Brien to cruise for babes. The two of them create fake profiles, and eventually both match with a 71-year-old woman named Gloria. We won’t spoil what happens next, but it’s a lot of fun.

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July 16, 2014

The song is called “Brooklyn Girls,” the video is set on the mean streets of Williamsburg, and the singer Catey Shaw sounds like a jazz crooner. The bouncy and undeniably catchy song, which Entertainment Weekly has already dubbed the most hated song on the internet rn,  is peppered with familiar references to anyone who’s ever lived in (North) Brooklyn. In just three minutes and thirty five seconds, Shaw manages to name drop the following Broadway (the one in Brooklyn), the L Train, breaking the rules, girls, Brooklyn-based area codes, Jay Z, combat boots in the summer, brownstones, drinks, sunsets, roughness, grit. Pretty accurate, I’d say.

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July 15, 2014

Jenny Lewis just directed and released an eminently watchable video for “One of the Guys,” the first single off her first solo album in six years, The Voyager (June 29). What makes it so easy on the eyes is the former Rilo Kiley frontwoman recruited three women who happen to get paid because you can’t take your eyes off them. Kristen Stewart, Anne Hathaway, and Brie Larsen all show off their charisma by dancing and prancing around in various outfits, including some Beastie Boys-esque Adidas tracksuits and pornstaches. Anne Hathaway sheds a single tear at one point, because she can’t help herself.

via GQ

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July 14, 2014

Émilie Richard-Froozan and Rémy Bennett just got back from the Marfa Film Festival, where the two filmmakers screened their very first feature, the psychedelic fever dream, Buttercup Bill. Shot in New Orleans, the film follows old childhood friends Patrick and Pernillia (played by Bennett) across a surreal, Southern Gothic landscape, as they engage in psychosexual mind games. Richard-Froozan and Bennett, met at an NYU Tisch special program for acting and directing in Dublin, both have educations in the arts, and have made Brooklyn their creative base. We recently caught up with them to discuss their filmmaking process, drawing from personal experience, and shooting in New Orleans. 

Describe the nature of your collaboration. How do you two work together?
It’s sort of regimented in a way, actually. At this point we kind of follow a certain structure when we sit down to start on a new project. We usually develop an idea together then go away to sort of let it gestate in our minds separately then come back to each other and workshop it and then start to exchange inspiration and then slowly build on things from there. We also produce together, so there is a lot of delegating what we do between the two of us.

How would you describe Buttercup Bill in one sentence?
Dreams are dangerous.

Where did the idea for Buttercup Bill come from?
The story came from what we felt was vital to us at that time in our lives. The unresolved things, what broke our hearts, sort of the fatal flaws in both of us that we wanted to exercise.

How essential has your education been to your film making process?
Remy: To me constantly educating yourself is the most important part of any of creating, whether it’s writing, directing, or acting. The research is what interests me most. Feeding myself with art outside of what I’m working on is what sustains my inspiration.

What were some of the experiences you drew on to write Buttercup Bill?
We drew on experiences from our childhood. Those all encompassing friendships that are so strong when you’re young, the heightened other worldliness of those bonds.

What is the most difficult part about making a feature length film?
In general I’d have to say just getting a movie made, you know, finding the backing for it and getting through the initial stages of development and into actual production is always the ultimate challenge. Showing up on set the first day always feels like a miracle.

The producers of this film are Blonde to Black Pictures. How has working with them helped your creative process?
Remy: They believed in us enough to allow the freedom to make the movie we wanted to make. For someone in the industry to look at a script as a story that needs to be told as opposed to a commodity that needs to be packaged is a rarity and something that we were really lucky to have in them.

Where do you see your film careers going?
No idea, to be honest! As long as we keep on doing work that matters to us we’ll be happy.

What was shooting in New Orleans like? What did that city add to your film that maybe wasn’t on the page?
We wanted to find an ambiguous rural setting as a backdrop for the film. We have amazing friends down there who we stayed with while we were writing and developing the script so we always knew that that’s where we would inevitably shoot the film. New Orleans has a palpable energy that I think permeates through the screen. It’s a really special place in the world.

What were some of the visual references you used when making this movie?
Jean Cocteau’s Les Enfants Terribles was a big inspiration, also Nan Goldin’s Variety film stills.

You surround yourselves with creative people. Is that essential to being creative yourself?
It’s definitely an advantage to have people around you who are constantly working on creative things. It’s inspiring to have that surrounding you.

What is your ultimate goal in the film industry?
To keep on writing stories that are meaningful to us.

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July 14, 2014

There was never any doubt that the German Men’s National Team’s Sunday night was going to be better than yours, but just how much better you ask? Have a look at the photo below:

That’s Rihanna jamming with ze Germans after their thrilling victory over Argentina in yesterday’s World Cup final. Rihanna, who was a guest of tournament sponsor Budweiser, also got to hang out with world famous boner having goal scorer Mario Götze.

And here she is with all time World Cup leading scorer Miroslav #Klose:

Rihanna was very excited:

Only four more years to see who gets to party with Rihanna next!

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July 11, 2014

Four years ago, LeBron James announced he was leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers and his home state of Ohio for the blue skies of Miami Beach in the worst way possible. It was called The Decision, and it helped turn a city, a state, and most of a country against him. Now, after two NBA Championships with the star-studded Miami Heat, LeBron James has announced his fairy tale return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the best way possible. It is an as-told-to essay on Sports Illustrated’s website, and even if you’re not a sports fan, it counts as a must-read. It is the rarest thing: a global megastar not yet thirty who somehow manages to remain humble while acknowledging his immense power and responsibility. The essay, which touches on themes forgiveness, family, and hope, is maturity personified. He could go anywhere in the world, and he’s going home to Cleveland. Even if you’re not a sports fan, it’s enough to give you goosebumps. Read his words below.

Before anyone ever cared where I would play basketball, I was a kid from Northeast Ohio. It’s where I walked. It’s where I ran. It’s where I cried. It’s where I bled. It holds a special place in my heart. People there have seen me grow up. I sometimes feel like I’m their son. Their passion can be overwhelming. But it drives me. I want to give them hope when I can. I want to inspire them when I can. My relationship with Northeast Ohio is bigger than basketball. I didn’t realize that four years ago. I do now.

Remember when I was sitting up there at the Boys & Girls Club in 2010? I was thinking, This is really tough. I could feel it. I was leaving something I had spent a long time creating. If I had to do it all over again, I’d obviously do things differently, but I’d still have left. Miami, for me, has been almost like college for other kids. These past four years helped raise me into who I am. I became a better player and a better man. I learned from a franchise that had been where I wanted to go. I will always think of Miami as my second home. Without the experiences I had there, I wouldn’t be able to do what I’m doing today.

I went to Miami because of D-Wade and CB. We made sacrifices to keep UD. I loved becoming a big bro to Rio. I believed we could do something magical if we came together. And that’s exactly what we did! The hardest thing to leave is what I built with those guys. I’ve talked to some of them and will talk to others. Nothing will ever change what we accomplished. We are brothers for life.  I also want to thank Micky Arison and Pat Riley for giving me an amazing four years.

I’m doing this essay because I want an opportunity to explain myself uninterrupted. I don’t want anyone thinking: He and Erik Spoelstra didn’t get along. … He and Riles didn’t get along. … The Heat couldn’t put the right team together. That’s absolutely not true.

I’m not having a press conference or a party. After this, it’s time to get to work.

When I left Cleveland, I was on a mission. I was seeking championships, and we won two. But Miami already knew that feeling. Our city hasn’t had that feeling in a long, long, long time. My goal is still to win as many titles as possible, no question. But what’s most important for me is bringing one trophy back to Northeast Ohio.

I always believed that I’d return to Cleveland and finish my career there. I just didn’t know when. After the season, free agency wasn’t even a thought. But I have two boys and my wife, Savannah, is pregnant with a girl. I started thinking about what it would be like to raise my family in my hometown. I looked at other teams, but I wasn’t going to leave Miami for anywhere except Cleveland. The more time passed, the more it felt right. This is what makes me happy.

To make the move I needed the support of my wife and my mom, who can be very tough. The letter from Dan Gilbert, the booing of the Cleveland fans, the jerseys being burned — seeing all that was hard for them. My emotions were more mixed. It was easy to say, “OK, I don’t want to deal with these people ever again.” But then you think about the other side. What if I were a kid who looked up to an athlete, and that athlete made me want to do better in my own life, and then he left? How would I react? I’ve met with Dan, face-to-face, man-to-man. We’ve talked it out. Everybody makes mistakes. I’ve made mistakes as well. Who am I to hold a grudge?

I’m not promising a championship. I know how hard that is to deliver. We’re not ready right now. No way. Of course, I want to win next year, but I’m realistic. It will be a long process, much longer than it was in 2010. My patience will get tested. I know that. I’m going into a situation with a young team and a new coach. I will be the old head. But I get a thrill out of bringing a group together and helping them reach a place they didn’t know they could go. I see myself as a mentor now and I’m excited to lead some of these talented young guys. I think I can help Kyrie Irving become one of the best point guards in our league. I think I can help elevate Tristan Thompson and Dion Waiters. And I can’t wait to reunite with Anderson Varejao, one of my favorite teammates.

But this is not about the roster or the organization. I feel my calling here goes above basketball. I have a responsibility to lead, in more ways than one, and I take that very seriously. My presence can make a difference in Miami, but I think it can mean more where I’m from. I want kids in Northeast Ohio, like the hundreds of Akron third-graders I sponsor through my foundation, to realize that there’s no better place to grow up. Maybe some of them will come home after college and start a family or open a business. That would make me smile. Our community, which has struggled so much, needs all the talent it can get.

In Northeast Ohio, nothing is given. Everything is earned. You work for what you have.

I’m ready to accept the challenge. I’m coming home.

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