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Video roundup

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Here's a bunch of videos that have come to my attention lately. Too sleepy to be sure who pointed me to most of them; sorry. I should probably have split this into two posts to keep the number of links manageable, but I'm too sleepy for that too.

  • A while back, I linked to a video of a Stanford Juggling Research Institute video. A while later, the SJRI posted another video, of the same show at a different venue, the IJA Championships. The reason I'm linking to this second video is that in the first one I linked to, they dropped clubs a little more often than usual; the performance in this second video is smoother, and won them the silver medal at that championship. Of course, the performance is pretty astonishing (and funny) in both videos.
  • Speaking of amazing three-person physical performances, Lola points to Solid Potato Salad, a clip of three sisters named Ross performing a song about, well, potato salad. But the amazing part is what happens after they're done singing, around a minute in. Contrary to the blurb on the page, this video is not an ad for potato salad; one of the commenters says that it's a clip from the 1944 movie Broadway Rhythm. Dunno if that's true or not, but the Ross sisters were indeed in that movie, according to the IMDB. Anyway, there comes a point when I can no longer visually parse these performers as human; they start to look kind of alien. Very very impressive.
  • Speaking of three-person musical performances, here's Australian comedy group Tripod performing their song "Make You Happy Tonight" at a comedy festival. It starts getting funny (and geeky) about a minute into it (but you should start listening from the beginning for full effect).
  • Speaking of geekiness, here's PlayStation 3 vs. Wii in the style of the PC vs. Mac commercials. Um, neither the video nor the audio on this one are entirely work-safe.
  • Speaking of silliness, Naomi points to the Helsinki Complaints Choir. "Finnish artists Tellervo Kalleinen and Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen collected the pet peeves and angst-ridden pleas of people in Helsinki and then composed this choral work around the list of complaints. Music composed by Esko Grundström." With subtitles in English. Lyrics probably aren't exactly work-safe if your coworkers speak Finnish. This one's six and a half minutes long, plus thirty seconds of closing footage, plus an inexplicable minute and a half of blank screen at the end. So you can safely stop watching when the singing ends.
  • A few years ago, BMW got eight high-profile film directors to create a series of short films/long ads for BMW with the collective title The Hire. I sort of thought I had seen all of them, but after James Brown's death, Noda pointed to The Hire: Beat the Devil, which among other things is a fun reworking of the Robert Johnson/"sell your soul to the devil at the crossroads" story, featuring Gary Oldman as an over-the-top Devil, James Brown as "Mr. James Brown," and of course Clive Owen as Driver. See IMDB page for more info.
  • If programmers made planes. (This ad turns out to have roughly the opposite point from what I was expecting.)
  • Trailer for new documentary Nerdcore for Life. Geeks do hip-hop.
  • Thanks to Josh for a video taking the cornstarch-and-water thing to a whole new level. (This may be even cooler than the cornstarch/water stuff that I linked to a year ago.)
  • In a sort of vaguely similar vein: ferrofluid! (See also still images--thanks, j7y!)
  • You know those cute little pushpin-like info markers in Google Maps? Here's a life-size one. See also stills and info.
  • Thanks to Twig for a cute political ad (definitely not work-safe) featuring a couple who's into roleplaying, in the sexual sense. Sort of. Heavy-handed but amusing.
  • On a more serious note, Oxfam did a Starbucks-protest video, and Starbucks responded with a video of their own.
  • Last but not least: Jet-man! A Swiss pilot, Yves Rossy, has built a personal-sized set of rigid jet-powered wings that enable him to fly. (The text on that page seems to be a little bit confused about Batman--I think they meant Superman, but then why mention Bob Kane?--but just ignore that part and watch the video.) It's sort of like Rocketeer, only it's real, and involves wings. Well, and he can't yet do a vertical takeoff from the ground; he needs to jump out of a plane first. The video doesn't give as much of a sense of what it's like as I would like, but definitely cool. There's also a video with more discussion (in French, iIrc). You'll believe a man can really fly.

1 Comment

On the Ross Sisters: it's sort of like if Cirque du Soleil did a piece for the Wizard of Oz. Well, except that sounds awful, and this isn't. Thanks for the pointer!


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