HIGHLY RECOMMENDED W/ ALEX COPPOLA

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED W/ ALEX COPPOLA

* Providing the A's to the 5 HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Q's today is    Alex Coppola   —the director/producer behind the charmingly feel good    Kings Of Blah documentary   , which you should go watch immediately after reading the tips below.

* Providing the A's to the 5 HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Q's today is Alex Coppola—the director/producer behind the charmingly feel good Kings Of Blah documentary, which you should go watch immediately after reading the tips below.

#1 - WHAT IS THE ONE ALBUM (OR EP OR SONG) THAT YOU THINK SHOULD BE THE VERY NEXT MUSICAL THING THAT EVERYONE PRESSES PLAY ON THE NEXT TIME THEY FIND THEMSELVES THINKING “WHAT SHOULD I LISTEN TO NOW”?

I mean this has to be Frog, right?

And I don’t even say that as a plug for the movie. I just love the band. The music is funny and wistful, and earnest and a little weird. I don’t know how many times I’ve listened to their song Nancy Kerrigan over the past five years.

I’m jealous of anyone who hasn’t heard it—I’d kill to hear that song again for the first time.

#2 - WHAT IS THE ONE MOVIE OR TV SHOW THAT YOU THINK SHOULD BE NEXT IN EVERYBODY’S NETFLIX QUEUE (OK, DOESN’T HAVE TO BE NETFLIX, WE’RE ALL INTERNET ADULTS HERE AND KNOW HOW TO FIND ANYTHING ONLINE, ONE WAY OR ANOTHER)?

It came out a few years ago, but I just recently re-watched the documentary Raiders!

It follows this group of childhood friends that remade Raiders of the Lost Ark, shot-for-shot, over the course of like four decades. I like anything about an underdog—that’s what drew me to the Frog story in the first place.

3. I (AND BY “I” I MEAN “THE PERSON THAT IS READING THIS”) AM GOING TO THE BOOK STORE (OK, PROBABLY AMAZON) TO FIND THE VERY NEXT BOOK THAT I WILL BE PUTTING SOME EXTREMELY VALUABLE ‘ME-TIME' ASIDE FOR. WHICH BOOK WOULD YOU GET, IF YOU WERE ME (AND, I SUPPOSE, YOU HADN’T ALREADY READ WHAT YOU’RE ABOUT TO SUGGEST)?

My impulse was to pick something from an overlooked/obscure best-of-list and try and pass myself off as an active reader. But I’m just not anymore. Which is pretty bad, and I should fix that.

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However, after the announcement that the XFL was coming back, I binged this playlist of ‘80s and ‘90s WrestleMania and SummerSlam events. And it reminded me of this story by Tony Earley called Charlotte which is about (among other things) the poetry of professional wrestling, identity, and love. It’s great. I think it’s part of his first collection of short stories.

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His memoir Somehow Form a Family is really good too. I could give those some me-time. And they’re short, so if you don’t have that much me-time to take, they’re perfect.

#4 - WHAT IS THE ONE WEBSITE (OR JUST ANY OLD INTERNET THING: APP, GIF, SERVICE, WHATEVER) THAT YOU WOULD GET REALLY DOWN IN THE DUMPS ABOUT IF IT WERE TO SUDDENLY GO AWAY?

Yahoo Answers. No question. The submissions are ludicrous and some of the answers are just genius.

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There’s obviously more trolling going on in there now than there was in the past, which is annoying. But for every one of those posts, there’s a "Are cats good pets?", "Why is Tom Cruise small?" or "How many smoked salmons is too much?".

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Beyond the humor, it’s fascinating to see what people will offer up to strangers and the faith they’ll put in their responses. There’s a vulnerability that—as someone who’s usually too embarrassed to ask for help with anything—I admire.

#5 - AND FINALLY… PLEASE GIVE ONE COMPLETELY UNAIDED RECOMMENDATION THAT YOU THINK EVERYONE SHOULD START DOING / USING / WATCHING / EATING / THINKING / QUITING / ETC-ING TO MAKE THEIR LIVES A LITTLE BIT MORE BETTER AND/OR BEARABLE.

The Every Frame a Painting video series is really great. The creators have moved on to other projects now but all the videos are still online.

It’s essentially a free course on cinematic form—some videos break down the style of a particular director, others look more generally at the use of visual/aural techniques and elements. And the creators do that, against all odds, without coming off as affected dicks. It’s a great resource for anyone who wants to understand more about how movies are actually made and/or just get better at watching them.


OK folks, there you have it. Things that Alex Coppola thinks you should consider incorporating into your day/life. Before you close this tab down and go explore all the other tabs you just opened, go follow Alex on Vimeo (where you can and should watch that Frog documentary) and if you can maybe hassle Alex on Twitter to see if he wants to come back to the platform. Otherwise, also go spend a minute with this Frog music video he put together.


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