A couple of weeks ago, I was scheduled to take a trip from New York (JFK) to Los Angeles on JetBlue. Every year, my family goes on a one-week pilgrimage, where we put our work on hold and spend time visiting temples, praying, and spending time with family and friends…
“If that’s making you happy that’s brilliant. You know? People shouldn’t be so snobby. To say that “Beethoven is great but 2 Unlimited is crap” I think is rubbish because it’s just not that simple. It’s like saying “filet mignon is brilliant food but bananas are stupid to eat!” It’s not! You need all the different things.”—Björk (via christinefriar)
“While having money doesn’t necessarily make anybody anything,” Piff later told New York magazine, “the rich are way more likely to prioritize their own self-interests above the interests of other people.” They are, he continued, “more likely to exhibit characteristics that we would stereotypically associate with, say, assholes.”
“Calling the overall human experience “poignant,” “thought-provoking,” and a “complete tour de force,” film critic Roger Ebert praised existence Thursday as “an audacious and thrilling triumph.” “While not without its flaws, life, from birth to death, is a masterwork, and an uplifting journey that both touches the heart and challenges the mind,” said Ebert, adding that while the totality of all humankind is sometimes “a mess in places,” it strives to be a magnum opus and, according to Ebert, largely succeeds at this goal. “At times brutally sad, yet surprisingly funny, and always completely honest, I wholeheartedly recommend existence. If you haven’t experienced it yet, then what are you waiting for? It is not to be missed.” Ebert later said that while human existence’s running time was “a little on the long side,” it could have gone on much, much longer and he would have been perfectly happy.”—The Onion really knocked this one out of the park.
For a few years, I kept an email from Mark in my inbox: a positive review of an essay I had written, drawing a link between Bergman’s Trilogy of Faith and Camus’s Myth of Sisyphus, WHICH — anyone who took a class with Mark knows — is his absolute bread and butter. I wrote it with the intention of getting a good grade from Dr. Harris, who would recite lines of Balzac before we switched on 400 Blows. Still, it was a nice email from someone whose opinion I respected immensely. So I didn’t have the heart to file it.
What a pity that future UBC students won’t have Dr. Harris as a prof. He was exactly what you wanted, going into film studies at university: an eccentric, deeply passionate and knowledgeable man who shared his love of film (and literature! music! etc.). He would stand in front of the class, gesturing and pacing, illuminating constellations across art forms, continents, centuries. Mark’s encyclopedic knowledge wove intricate stories, and you really did have to go to every lecture — were there ever two the same?
And then — what a pity film-lovers in Vancouver have lost this generous, enthusiastic cohort. Mark wanted to review EVERYTHING when I was at the Cinematheque. And I perfectly remember him sprinting to the door of a screening at VIFF — doubtless having made the journey from Granville 7 in less than 60 seconds.
There was something so great about Mark, that he had figured out a great happiness in life through enjoying film and sharing that.
I’m sure he will be missed by many, and my heart goes out to his wife and all his colleagues and students.