During preparation for Woods, the musical director warned Kendrick that no Cinderella had ever nailed the big ballad, “On the Steps of the Palace,” an atonal whirlwind.
"There’s always a note or two that’s wrong, because the song is impossible," Kendrick says, "so I made it my mission to actually get the fucking notes right, which I didn’t realize was going to be such a problem." Doesn’t that sounds like the vow of a Type A overachiever, after all?
"I guess," Kendrick says reluctantly. She pauses, then bursts out laughing. "Or you could look at it like, well, that’s my fucking job."
Chiune Sugihara. This man saved 6000 Jews. He was a Japanese diplomat in Lithuania. When the Nazis began rounding up Jews, Sugihara risked his life to start issuing unlawful travel visas to Jews. He hand-wrote them 18 hrs a day. The day his consulate closed and he had to evacuate, witnesses claim he was STILL writing visas and throwing from the train as he pulled away. He saved 6000 lives. The world didn’t know what he’d done until Israel honored him in 1985, the year before he died.
Why can’t we have a movie about him?
He was often called “Sempo”, an alternative reading of the characters of his first name, as that was easier for Westerners to pronounce.
His wife, Yukiko, was also a part of this; she is often credited with suggesting the plan. The Sugihara family was held in a Soviet POW camp for 18 months until the end of the war; within a year of returning home, Sugihara was asked to resign - officially due to downsizing, but most likely because the government disagreed with his actions.
He didn’t simply grant visas - he granted visas against direct orders, after attempting three times to receive permission from the Japanese Foreign Ministry and being turned down each time. He did not “misread” orders; he was in direct violation of them, with the encouragement and support of his wife.
He was honoured as Righteous Among the Nations in 1985, a year before he died in Kamakura; he and his descendants have also been granted permanent Israeli citizenship. He was also posthumously awarded the Life Saving Cross of Lithuania (1993); Commander’s Cross Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland (1996); and the Commander’s Cross with Star of the Order of Polonia Restituta (2007). Though not canonized, some Eastern Orthodox Christians recognize him as a saint.
Sugihara was born in Gifu on the first day of 1900, January 1. He achieved top marks in his schooling; his father wanted him to become a physician, but Sugihara wished to pursue learning English. He deliberately failed the exam by writing only his name and then entered Waseda, where he majored in English. He joined the Foreign Ministry after graduation and worked in the Manchurian Foreign Office in Harbin (where he learned Russian and German; he also converted to the Eastern Orthodox Church during this time). He resigned his post in protest over how the Japanese government treated the local Chinese citizens. He eventually married Yukiko Kikuchi, who would suggest and encourage his acts in Lithuania; they had four sons together. Chiune Sugihara passed away July 31, 1986, at the age of 86. Until her own passing in 2008, Yukiko continued as an ambassador of his legacy.
It is estimated that the Sugiharas saved between 6,000-10,000 Lithuanian and Polish Jewish people.
It’s a tragedy that the Sugiharas aren’t household names. They are among the greatest heroes of WWII. Is it because they were from an Axis Power? Is it because they aren’t European? I don’t know. But I’ve decided to always reblog them when they come across my dash. If I had the money, I would finance a movie about them.
He told an interviewer:
You want to know about my motivation, don’t you? Well. It is the kind of sentiments anyone would have when he actually sees refugees face to face, begging with tears in their eyes. He just cannot help but sympathize with them. Among the refugees were the elderly and women. They were so desperate that they went so far as to kiss my shoes, Yes, I actually witnessed such scenes with my own eyes. Also, I felt at that time, that the Japanese government did not have any uniform opinion in Tokyo. Some Japanese military leaders were just scared because of the pressure from the Nazis; while other officials in the Home Ministry were simply ambivalent.
People in Tokyo were not united. I felt it silly to deal with them. So, I made up my mind not to wait for their reply. I knew that somebody would surely complain about me in the future. But, I myself thought this would be the right thing to do. There is nothing wrong in saving many people’s lives….The spirit of humanity, philanthropy…neighborly friendship…with this spirit, I ventured to do what I did, confronting this most difficult situation—and because of this reason, I went ahead with redoubled courage.
He died in nearly complete obscurity in Japan. His neighbors were shocked when people from all over, including Israeli diplomatic personnel, showed up at quiet little Mr. Sugihara’s funeral.
Cosima groaned internally, and kept walking, determined not to pay attention to the call. It happened frequently enough that she knew exactly who was calling her name; Rachel Duncan, her boyfriend Paul Dierdan, and her cheerleader chronies. Rachel had always hated Cosima, though she could never really figure out why. She figured it was because Cosima was top of her class, in every class, and Rachel hated being second. Paul and the rest of the cheerleaders just did whatever Rachel told them, and what she told them was usually to torture the Geek Freak.
Cosima was in her last semester; she’d be graduating a year and a half early, and she couldn’t be more thankful. One more month, and she’d be saying farewell motherfuckers to this hell hole. It was going to be a very good Christmas.
School was over for the day, but she’d left a few things in her locker that she’d needed to grab before she walked home. Unfortunately, that meant that most of the students and teachers had vacated the hallways, leaving her vulnerable to the group of people who despised her. She was suddenly jerked back a rough grip on her bicep, making her stumble into the lockers and drop her shoulder bag, which was quickly snatched up by a faceless cheerleader and dumped all over the floor. Cosima was suddenly grateful she’d decided to leave her precious laptop at home today, because it never would have survived crashing to the hard linoleum floor.
She glared at Rachel and Paul, who were smirking at her. “Really dude? Was that totally necessary?”
“You must learn to listen when you’re called, Cosima.” Cosima rolled her eyes.
“Yeah, okay, sure. No prob. Next time I’ll stop and lay prone on the ground so you don’t have to push me down before you kick me.” She spat with venom. Paul lifted his lip in an ugly snarl and pinned her against the lockers with one large hand against her shoulder.
“Oh, Cosima, you should know I never do the…physical work myself. So uncivilized.” Rachel’s cold voice made her shiver a little; her anger had gotten the better of her this time. She knew that the more quiet she was, the more likely they were to leave her alone, but now apparently she’d pushed Rachel a bit too far. She didn’t actually think they’d hurt her physically (well, not much at least) but they would make her life even worse over the next four weeks.
So she might as well make it count.
“You’re such a fucking bitch, Rachel. You need to pick on everyone you think is less that you to make you feel all high and mighty.”
“Hey!” Paul shouted, making her flinch. “Don’t speak to her like that, freak.” He was now poking her firmly in the chest with each word, and it hurt. God she wished Sarah was here. Her girlfriend had graduated last semester, and taken with her Cosima’s main form of protection. No one messed with Sarah Manning, no matter how much they hated her. Even Rachel had left her alone for the most part. But now Sarah was gone and Cosima had been left to fend for herself for a few months.
“Bully.” She spat in his face, and forced herself not to flinch as he leaned down closer to her face.
“Say it again.”
“Coward. Toady. Cretin.” Before he could say anything in retaliation, a terrifying snarl sounded through the hallway and seconds later Paul was forcibly thrown sideways, away from Cosima to her great relief. That was, of course, until she saw that it was Sarah who now had Paul pinned to the floor with one black eye and was poised to give him another. He looked like he was about to shit himself.
Cosima lunged forward and wrapped her arms around Sarah’s torso, tugging to get her attention. “Baby, stop. You’re about to shift, I can feel you shaking.” She was whispering frantically, still tugging Sarah away from Paul.
Sarah’s entire body was wired tight enough to snap, and subtle tremors were running through her body. Cosima knew if she could see Sarah’s eyes they would be glowing gold, the wolf inside her showing through. She was seconds away from shifting into her full werewolf form, which would be highly problematic to say the least. In an attempt to calm her down, Cosima pressed gentle kisses to Sarah’s neck before biting gently where her neck met her shoulder. She nearly buckled in relief when Sarah relaxed back into her. Crisis averted momentarily.
“Good girl. That’s it baby, just calm down. I’m okay. You saved me.” She could feel Sarah slowly calming down and she released her grip around Sarah’s torso to grab hold of her hand, and buried her face against her shoulder.
Sarah squeezed her hand and when Cosima looked up, she was both relieved and slightly worried to see Sarah’s eyes were still a bright shade of yellow. Sarah gave her a toothy yet feral grin, and turned her attention back to the mob. Cosima let go of Sarah’s hand briefly to gather her scattered papers and books, and shouldered her bag once more.
“Rachel, Paul. It’s been a while. Seems it didn’t take long to forget me.” Rachel sneered at her as Paul struggled to his feet, wiping a spot of blood from his lip.
“Sarah. How unfortunate. You know, Paul could press charges.”
Sarah scoffed. “Yeah, but we both know he won’t, right Duncan?” Cosima was inordinately smug when Rachel remained silent behind her expressionless mask.
“So here’s what’s gonna happen, yeah? You’re all gonna forget this happened. You’re never gonna harass my girl again. And I won’t have to beat the ever living shite out of each and every one of you, yeah?”
The cheerleaders all nodded frantically in unison, while Rachel waved her hand indifferently and Paul spat on the ground. Sarah took that as agreement. “Right. Well. Pleasure doin’ business.”
They all turned to go their separate ways, but Sarah stopped and turned back. “Oi, Rachel!” In a flash, she strode over to Rachel and planted her fist into her cheek, causing Rachel’s head to snap to the side as she stumbled back.”
“Sarah!” Cosima shouted, terrified that Rachel might do something in retaliation, but she simply straightened and met Sarah’s eyes blankly.
“A promise is a promise, Duncan.” Sarah intoned, and she grabbed Cosima’s hand once more as they left the building.
Cosima was laughing as they reached the car, all of her pent up emotions from the last 20 minutes releasing themselves.
“My hero,” She gushed playfully at Sarah, bumping her shoulder against the older girls’.
Sarah smirked at her, and leaned against the front door, pulling Cosima into her and wrapping her arms around the geek’s waist. “Yeah? Am I? Well, what’s my reward then, eh?”
Cosima rolled her eyes and nuzzled Sarah’s nose before giving her a gentle kiss, which Sarah quickly took advantage of and deepend.
When they broke apart, Sarah rested her forehead against Cosima’s. “What was that, Cos? You promised me everything was alright. I thought the bitch and her sheep had left you alone?”
“Heh, well, I just….I didn’t want to worry you, Sar. I mean, I can handle it - I usually just keep my head down and ignore them and it’s alright, I mean my books get beat up and stuff but, it’s fine dude. Just…I dunno I got so pissed today.”
“Cos, you shouldn’t have to keep quiet to avoid being bullied! You should be able to say whatever’s on your mind, baby. This is ridiculous!”
“Sar, I’ve only got a month left, and after today I think they’ll leave me alone. But you, missy, nearly exposed your entire race to the two people who would love nothing more to exploit that!”
It was Sarah’s turn to roll her eyes. “Yeah, because when I sense my girlfriend is in pain and scared out of her mind I have total control over my instincts, Cos. It’s not that easy.”
Cosima smiled tolerantly and nuzzled her again. “You silly werewolf. I love you.”
Sarah’s grin reminded her of an excited puppy. “I love you too, Cos.”
“By the way, what did you mean ‘a promise is a promise’, when you punched Rachel?”
Sarah smirked. “I told Duncan if she ever messed with you that I’d mess up her pretty little face. I don’t think she believed me. Now maybe she’ll think twice before doing it again.”
Cosima laughed. She suddenly felt much more optimistic about the next four weeks.
how is it possible to love fictional characters this much and also have people always been this way?
like, did queen elizabeth lie in bed late sometimes thinking ‘VERILY I CANNOT EVEN FOR MERCUTIO HATH SLAIN ME WITH FEELS’
was caesar like ‘ET TU ODYSSEUS’
sometimes i wonder
oh my GOD
the answer is yes they did. there’s a lot of research about the highly emotional reactions to the first novels widely available in print.
here’s a thing; the printing press was invented in 1450 and whilst it was revolutionary it wasn’t very good. but then it got better over time and by the 16th century there were publications, novels, scientific journals, folios, pamphlets and newspapers all over Europe. at first most were educational or theological, or reprints of classical works.
however, novels gained in popularity, as basically what most people wanted was to read for pleasure. they became salacious, extremely dramatic, with tragic heroines and doomed love and flawed heroes (see classical literature, only more extreme.) books in the form of letters were common. sensationalism was par the course and apparently used to teach moral lessons. there was also a lot of erotica floating around.
but here’s the thing: due to the greater availability of literature and the rise of comfy furniture (i shit you not this is an actual historical fact, the 16th and 17th century was when beds and chairs got comfy) people started reading novels for pleasure, women especially. as these novels were highly emotional, they too became…highly emotional. there are loads of contemporary reports of young women especially fainting, having hysterics, or crying fits lasting for days due to the death of a character or their otp’s doomed love. they became insensible over books and characters, and were very vocal about it. men weren’t immune-there’s a long letter a middle-aged man wrote to the author of his favourite work basically saying that the novel is too sad, he can’t handle all his feels, if they don’t get together he won’t be able to go on, and his heart is already broken at the heroine’s tragic state (IIRC ehh).
conservatives at the time were seriously worried about the effects of literature on people’s mental health, and thought it damaging to both morals and society. so basically yes it is exactly like what happens on tumblr when we cry over attractive British men, only my historical theory (get me) is that their emotions were even more intense, as they hadn’t had a life of sensationalist media to numb the pain for them beforehand in the same way we do, nor did they have the giant group therapy session that is tumblr.
(don’t even get me started on the classical/early medieval dudes and their boners for the Iliad i will be here all week. suffice to say, the members of the Byzantine court used Homeric puns instead of talking normally to each other if someone who hand’t studied the classics was in the room. they had dickish fandom in-jokes. boom.)
I needed to know this.
See, we’re all just the current steps in a time-honored tradition! (And this post is good to read along with Affectingly’s post this week about old-school-fandom-and-history-and-stuff.
Ancient Iliad fandom is intense
Alexander the Great and and his boyfriend totally RPed Achilles and Patroclus. Alexander shipped that hard. (It’s possible that this story is apocryphal, but that would just mean that ancient historians were writing RPS about Alexander and Hephaestion RPing Iliad slash and honestly that’s just as good).
And then there’s this gem from Plato:
"Very different was the reward of the true love of Achilles towards his lover Patroclus - his lover and not his love (the notion that Patroclus was the beloved one is a foolish error into which Aeschylus has fallen, for Achilles was surely the fairer of the two, fairer also than all the other heroes; and, as Homer informs us, he was still beardless, and younger far)” - Symposium
That’s right: 4th Century BCE arguments about who topped. Nihil novi sub sole my friends.
Because nobody deserves to feel alone.
Anonymous said: honestly curious, why does it offend you?
i see lucy as a racist film that plays on negative stereotypes while hiding behind the cover of (white) feminism.
all this film has done is switch out the white man for a white woman. it’s still a film about a white person getting violated by the evil poc, then gaining power and wiping them out.
here’s 2 of my favourite scenes from the trailer:
from top to left to right:
KEEP CLEAN 保持清潔，APPLE 蘋果，ONION 洋蔥，GRAPE 葡萄，CHAIR 椅子，TOMATO 番茄
traditional chinese is an actual written language used by millions of people, not symbols to be thrown around at the whim of set designers because they look cool and idk, serves to create a menacing asian atmosphere. this is so disrespectful, and made even worse by the fact that this film in set it taipei, taiwan where the official written language is traditional chinese.
it doesn’t matter that this film caters to a primarily “white” audience who won’t be able to read it, the language and culture of taiwan isn’t something for you to twist and use as you deem fit because it’s “exotic.”
lucy shoots a guy for not being able to speak english.
she l i t e r a l l y shoots this taiwanese taxi driver, in taiwan for not being able to speak english. she’s in taipei and she’s shooting people as they are of no use to her because they don’t speak english.
just think about the sort of message that’s sending out. she’s not being “bad-ass strong female character who takes no shit,” she’s saying that english is useful and better. this is the type of harmful ideology that stretches all the way back from when western countries were colonising and forcing their language and customs on other countries.
let me explain with a real life example. i was born in new zealand to two taiwanese parents. i am fluent in english, but mandarin is conversational at best. my friends in taiwan say that i am “so lucky” to speak fluent english, when they are fluent in mandarin and their english level is no worse than my mandarin. they tell me that they want to perfect their english but in the same breath tell me that mandarin isn’t worth perfecting because i have english and that’s “enough”. they also tell me how pretty my white friends are when they see pictures.
this is the type of neo imperialism ideology that they’ve grown up buying into. it honestly hurts and frustrates me that they belittle their own culture like this, honestly believing that the western world is superior. this is the type of neo imperialism ideology that this film (hopefully unintentionally) promotes: white people are better and will save the day.
if they wanted to film a movie about a white women getting back at those who had violated her, why not film it in a western country? if they wanted to film it in taiwan, why not find an asian lead actress?
i do agree that we need more women protagonists in action/superhero movies, but not like this. its not okay that the female lead needs to be kidnapped and have her body cut open without her consent in order to gain her powers, and those said those powers do not make any of this racist bullshit okay.
i am just so tired and angry of poc always being brushed off to the side as either props or villains in mainstream media.
as a poc, it’s so frustrating to see that the of the standard of beauty still white women when we live in multi-cultural societies and a diverse world.
feminism is about equality. a film in which poc are presented as evil and inferior before being killed off by a superior white woman does not promote equality.
Happy Batman Day!
Unsuccessful attempts at awesome are always better than not even trying. I wake up every morning on the basis of this philosophy.
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