Interviews: Director Martin Scorsese On Filmmaking & Death (NYT)

From a New York Times online article (01/02/20):

Martin Scorsese Photo by Philip Montgomery for The New York Times
Scorsese would like to take a year to read and spend time with loved ones. “Because we’re all going. Friends are dying. Family’s going.”Credit…Philip Montgomery for The New York Times

In ways both subtle and substantial, Scorsese sees the world changing and becoming less familiar to him. He gratefully accepted a deal with Netflix, which covered the reported $160 million budget for “The Irishman.” But the bargain meant that, after the movie received a limited theatrical release, it would be shown on the company’s streaming platform.

Scorsese has other aspirations but they have nothing to do with moviemaking. “I would love to just take a year and read,” he said. “Listen to music when it’s needed. Be with some friends. Because we’re all going. Friends are dying. Family’s going.”

Martin Scorsese is the most alive he’s been in his work in a long time, brimming with renewed passion for filmmaking and invigorated by the reception that has greeted his latest gangland magnum opus, “The Irishman.”

And what he wants to talk about is death.

Just to be clear, he’s not talking about the deaths in his movies or anyone else’s. “You just have to let go, especially at this vantage point of age,” he said one Saturday afternoon last month.

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Health And Aging: U.S. Will Need 33,000 Geriatricians By 2025, Only Has 7,000 Now

From a New York Times online article:

Journal of the American Geriatrics SocietyIf one geriatrician can care for 700 patients with complicated medical needs, as a federal model estimates, then the nation will need 33,200 such doctors in 2025. It has about 7,000, only half of them practicing full time. (They’re sometimes confused with gerontologists, who study aging, and may work with older adults, but are not health care providers.)

Geriatrics became a board-certified medical specialty only in 1988. An analysis published in 2018 showed that over 16 years, through academic year 2017-18, the number of graduate fellowship programs that train geriatricians, underwritten by Medicare, increased to 210 from 182. That represents virtually no growth when adjusted for the rising United States population.

“It’s basically stagnation,” said Aldis Petriceks, the study’s lead author, now a medical student at Harvard.

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Film History: Federico Fellini’s “La Dolce Vita” (1960) At 60 Years (Video)

La Dolce Vita (“the sweet life” or “the good life”) is a 1960 comedy-drama film directed and co-written by Federico Fellini. The film follows Marcello Rubini (Marcello Mastroianni), a journalist writing for gossip magazines, over seven days and nights on his journey through the “sweet life” of Rome in a fruitless search for love and happiness. La Dolce Vita won the Palme d’Or (Golden Palm) at the 1960 Cannes Film Festival[ nd the Oscar for Best Costumes. The film was a worldwide box-office success.

From Wikipedia

Food & Drink: Prosecco – A Very “Sophisticated” Sparkling Wine These Days

From a UK The Week online article:

Visit Prosecco Italy Tasting Facebook PageWhile all their Proseccos are exceptional, it’s their Brut that blows everyone away. It recaptures a tantalising hint of the yeast I so loved from the Rifermentato in Bottiglia, all sharp apples and sourdough.

Tucked between the formidable fingers of the Dolomites and the enduring opulence of Venice is an overlooked area of Italian countryside. Its steep verdant hills and serene cobble-stone towns won’t be found on any tourist maps – but you will find their handiwork on just about every menu in the UK.

This is Prosecco country: the land that gave us all-you-can-sip sparkle. It’s easy to forget between the 6th and 7th bottomless brunch glass that someone, somewhere actually crafted this world-conquering wine. But craft it they do – carefully, consistently and often quickly – and what the UK sees is a mere price-prioritised glimpse of Prosecco’s true scope.

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Air Travel: Electric Planes From “Eviation” Could Be Flying In UK In 2 Years

Electric planes could soon fly commuters from city to city, a transport minister has disclosed. George Freeman, minister for transport and innovation, told The Telegraph’s “Chopper’s Brexit Podcast” that there was “a whole opportunity for short-haul transport at low altitude” that the country was yet to grasp.

Eviation Electric Aircraft Alice

In an episode of 2020 predictions, Mr Freeman said: “This will be the year where we begin to see a whole new world of low level aviation, Velocopters, electric planes. We already run the world’s first commercial electric plane service and Boris and I have been looking at how we can develop UK leadership in electric plane technology.” Mr Freeman said the planes could take eight passengers and fly at 2,500ft and could be used for “short hops between cities that take you an hour or two in the car, pumping out carbon monoxide.”

“At the moment the electric plane seats eight. But you know what the aerospace industry is like – eight soon becomes 18, and that soon becomes 28. We are determined to lead in the revolution of clean transport.”

To listen to the podcast in full, head here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/…

Medicine: “Is It An Art Or Science?” (The Lancet)

From a The Lancet online article:

Effective physicians interrogate their patients’ choice of words as well as their body language; they attend to what they leave out of their stories as well as what they put in. More than 2000 years after Hippocrates, there remains as much poetry in medicine as there is science.

The Lancet LogoWHO’s definition of health is famously “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. One of the oldest medical texts we know of, The Science of Medicine attributed to Hippocrates, sets out the goal of medicine in comparable terms: “the complete removal of the distress of the sick”.

In my working life as a physician, I’ve never found the distinction between arts and sciences a particularly useful one. In the earliest ancient Greek texts, medicine is described as a techne—a word better translated as “know-how”. It conveys elements of science, art, and skill, but also of artisanal craft. The precise functions of medicine may have subtly shifted over the ages, but our need as human beings for doctors remains the same; we go to them because we wish to invoke some change in our lives, either to cure or prevent an illness or influence some unwelcome mental or bodily process. The goal of medicine is, and always has been, the relief of human suffering—the word patient, from the Latin patientem, means sufferer. And the word physician is from the Greek phusis, or nature: to be engaged in clinical work is to engage oneself with the nature of illness, the nature of recovery, the nature of humanity.

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Top New Science Podcasts: Latest Trends In Research, Carnivorous Plant Traps

Science Magazine PodcastsWe start our first episode of the new year looking at future trends in policy and research with host Joel Goldberg and several Science News writers. Jeffrey Mervis discusses upcoming policy changes, Kelly Servick gives a rundown of areas to watch in the life sciences, and Ann Gibbons talks about potential advances in ancient proteins and DNA.

In research news, host Meagan Cantwell talks with Beatriz Pinto-Goncalves, a postdoctoral researcher at the John Innes Centre, about carnivorous plant traps. Through understanding the mechanisms that create these traps, Pinto-Goncalves and colleagues elucidate what this could mean for how they emerged in the evolutionary history of plants.

Video Profiles: 73-Year Old Legendary River Runner & Activist Herman Hoops

“A river trip in a boat is a magic carpet. It’s a ballet and you can feel in the oars what the river is saying. That’s the part that’s really hard for me to give up, that feeling of using all my knowledge and skills to dance on a river. If you’re a river runner, this is it, man…”

In the final chapter of his life, legendary river runner and activist Herm Hoops has the opportunity to take one last river trip through his treasured Desolation Canyon on the Green River. “Salad Days” gives us a rare glimpse of what it means when a person has the chance to reflect on a lifetime of passion and river running as they knowingly go through the stages of dying.

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Article on Herman Hoops

Video Interview: 89-Year Old Psycholinguist Jean Berko Gleason Discusses Culture & Language (PBS)

The Development of Language Jean Berko Gleason BookPsycholinguist Jean Berko Gleason is a professor emerita at Boston University and a pioneer in the field of children’s language. Even as a child, Berko Gleason loved and connected with language. It also made a big impression on her how much her older brother, who suffered from cerebral palsy, struggled to be understood. Berko Gleason shares her Brief But Spectacular take on language.