The Late Movies: Jonze-ing for Music Videos

Over the past month, I've done Late Movies posts about the music videos of both Jonathan Glazer and Mark Romanek, and I realize that every time I do these posts I claim that whatever director I'm posting about is totally the best ever -- but this time I actually mean it. You probably know Spike Jonze from his feature films, Adapation, Being John Malkovich and Where the Wild Things Are, but did you know he started out as a music video director? You did? Because actually he started as a skateboard video director -- you can't get much indie-r than that -- and then took that stripped-down, close-to-the-bone, one-long-take aesthetic and moved into videos. The result is often weird, quirky, uncanny and hilarious. Here are some of my favorites.

His most famous video has to be -- HAS to be -- the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage." Classique!

Did you know Christopher Walken is a REALLY good dancer? Watch this.

Fatboy Slim - Weapon Of Choice from Al on Vimeo.

Another Fatboy Slim video, and one of my favorites, is "Praise You." The lead dancer is Spike Jonze himself.

Brilliantly combining old footage from Happy Days with some subtle visual effects, Weezer's "Buddy Holly" feels just right.

Guy on fire! One shot. Simple and effective video for a band I've never heard of.

Charles, the saddest dog in New York, tries to meet people. It's more short film than music video -- for Daft Punk's "Da Funk."

Daft Punk - Da Funk from Victor Carvalho on Vimeo.

Fatlip from Pharcyde's single "What's Up, Fatlip?" Watch Fatlip act like a loser, dress up like a clown, and get kicked in the nuts by little kids. Made on a shoestring, just Spike and Fatlip running around Hollywood with a camera. By the way, he says "bitch" and whatnot, so it's NSFW -- but hey, it's a rap song.

The Simple Way to Reheat Your French Fries and Not Have Them Turn Into a Soggy Mess

Some restaurant dishes are made to be doggy-bagged and reheated in the microwave the next day. Not French fries: The more crispy and delectable they are when they first arrive on your table, the more of a soggy disappointment they’ll be when you try to revive them at home. But as The Kitchn recently shared, there’s a secret to making leftover fries you’ll actually enjoy eating.

The key is to avoid the microwave altogether. Much of the appeal of fries comes from their crunchy, golden-brown exterior and their creamy potato center. This texture contrast is achieved by deep-frying, and all it takes is a few rotations around a microwave to melt it away. As the fries heat up, they create moisture, transforming all those lovely crispy parts into a flabby mess.

If you want your fries to maintain their crunch, you need to recreate the conditions they were cooked in initially. Set a large pan filled with about 2 tablespoons of oil for every 1 cup of fries you want to cook over medium-high heat. When you see the oil start to shimmer, add the fries in a single layer. After about a minute, flip them over and allow them to cook for half a minute to a minute longer.

By heating up fries with oil in a skillet, you produce something called the Maillard Reaction: This happens when high heat transforms proteins and sugars in food, creating the browning effect that gives fried foods their sought-after color, texture, and taste.

After your fries are nice and crisp, pull them out of the pan with tongs or a spatula, set them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil, and sprinkle them with salt. Now all you need is a perfect burger to feel like you’re eating a restaurant-quality meal at home.

[h/t The Kitchn]

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