My longer post got eaten and I didn't save, so...

*I guess I just have to be really quick in recommending Rick Prelinger's new book, The Field Guide to Sponsored Films, from the National Film Preservation Foundation, which can be downloaded for free or ordered in printed form for $8.50. It's a nice, compact guide to 452 'sponsored' films, short and (occasionally) feature-length movies produced for the purposes of corporate or institutional communications, often to promote a product or ideology. Perfect for sitting on your lap as you browse the internet looking for things, particularly things nestled away in the Prelinger Archives. Examples (stream 'em all from the panel on the left):

heavy equipment is here to kill you (Shake Hands With Danger, 1975)

the director and cast of Blood Feast are here to teach you about cutting meat (Carving Magic, 1959

this is the future I ought to live in (Design for Dreaming, 1956)

old cars, olds cartoons, old songs, and sexual innuendo - together at last (In My Merry Oldsmobile, 1931)

if you need to learn how to use a jazz era telephone toot sweet, this is the link for you (Now You're Talking, 1927)

also: telephones are the key to love and beauty (Once Upon a Honeymoon, 1956)

Jimmy Stewart presents the greatest school of them all (Tomorrow's Drivers, 1954)

And there's so much more - nothing quite like reading about anti-union films and the 'response' films that unions would release to counter them. Lots of stuff well worth eroding America's productivity over.

Plus, be on notice that the NFPF is busily prepping the third and fourth entries in their line of dvd box sets, following Treasures from American Film Archives and More Treasures from American Film Archives, both of which are awesome. Treasures III: Social Issues in American Film, 1900 - 1934 will cover exactly what it says it does over four discs in the fall of this year, and Treasures IV: The American Avant-Garde Film, 1945-1985 will appear in the fall of 2008 with two discs chock full of water studies and moving dots and things. And I can't wait!

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