After WWI, a young German woman, Anna, finds a Frenchman laying flowers on the grave of her late fiancé. The fiancé, Frantz, was a German soldier who was killed in combat. As we learn shortly into the film, the Frenchman, Adrien, had been a soldier in the French army during the war.
Adrien presents himself as a dear friend of Frantz, but the underlying nature of their relationship is unclear. Were Adrien and Frantz just pre-war friends? Were they lovers? Or was Adrien somehow involved in the death of Frantz? Adding complexity to this emotionally-driven story, a fraught romantic tension develops between Adrien and Anna.
Underneath the uncertainties, grief, guilt and layered lies, both self-protective and superficially noble, are explored from the perspectives of all involved in the war's aftermath.
Directed by Francois Ozon, Frantz moves between reality, recollection and fantasy, with scenes shot in black and white, color and variations in between, though I didn't notice any correspondence between realism and the use of color. I can't even say that variations in the rendering of color were directly tied to changes in mood, but somehow the variations worked. Or they worked for me.
Paula Beer (Anna) and Pierre Niney (Adrien) anchor this film with beautiful performances backed by solid acting in the film's supporting roles.
Frantz is definitely a go-see film, excellent on first viewing and probably even better the second time around. This film is worthy of Academy Award nominations for best picture, director and performances in the foreign language film category.
I received a fraud alert from Chase yesterday. I replaced a lost credit card about three weeks ago, so Chase sent me a new card with a new card number. Yesterday, someone charged 26 mobile game apps to my new card. Most of the charges were for $9.99. A few were for $19.99. The games were purchased from a game developer called GLU Mobile, through the Google Play store, so the downloads went to a phone.
Anyway, Chase is sending me a replacement card.
This is frustrating because I update MalwareBytes and AVG daily and scan daily with both. No malware has at been detected on my computer at any time. I transact no business outside our home connection or my private office internet connection where my account is unshared. I always have a vpn turned on, except sometimes to watch a movie on Netflix because Netflix tends to reject VPNs, even if they use a US ip.
I use two-factor authentication for every on line account that offers it, including Google accounts. The purchase did not go through my google play account. I checked. So the user somehow got the card number, the security code and perhaps the associated info to pay and download the games to their phone.
It's possible that a store terminal where I used the card was hacked. Our dry cleaners still has us slide cards because they're not chip ready. That makes me wonder if they aren't scrupulous about security in general. Sometimes merchants have weak passcodes for their terminals and hackers can steal their customers' info. I wouldn't know where to start to figure out if that's how my info was grabbed, but we're going to start paying cash only at the cleaners, and I'll suggest that they upgrade now.
Ruling out other possibilities, I don't recall that the new credit card came in an envelope that appeared to have been tampered with in any way.
I wonder if Chase itself has been hacked, or if Amazon, Netflix or some other site that had my payment info was back-door hacked. Even if a hacker could log in to my accounts, the front doors to the acounts don't actually display the card number or security code, so they'd have to gain access to card info in some other way. If Chase or some other entity that has my info was hacked, they'll never say. Generally, we only learn about if it's in the news. Yahoo hid knowledge of a 1/2 billion hacked accounts for months after they knew about it.
Anyway, I'd really like to know what to do avoid a repeat with the replacement card.
Prince Harry lost his mother in a very public way when he was age 12. In this interview, he discusses his own road to psychotherapy in his late 20s after years of struggling with emotional difficulties.
This is The Toccata in D minor, Op. 11 by Sergei Prokofiev. It's an extremely difficult piece, and this recording by Martha Argerich is my favorite. If you don't know Argerich, she's one of the greatest pianists of the 20th century--and the 21st century.
The Toccata can be an acquired taste. I probably listened to it a dozen times before I loved it. For a glimpse of what performing it might looks like, here's Yuja Wang playing it at the Steinway factory. While technically amazing, I think her rendition lacks the subtlety of Argerich's performance. Still, it's a sight to behold.
The issue is complicated and can't be reduced to to simple pronouncements, which is why the currency manipulation charge worked for Trump during the campaign. Naming a foreign enemy and blaming them for your troubles is more viscerally 'persuasive' than articles like this.
The Transpacific Partnership is another example of a controversy that is largely beyond the understanding of most people, while lending itself to an Americans-versus-foreigners mentality so well that both Republicans and Democrats turned against it in the run up to the 2017 election.
None of this is intended to minimize the fact that many people feel ecomically screwed, but blaming foreign countries as a deflection is as old as the hills, and a favorite tactic of oppressive governments everywhere. It works for dictators and it works in liberal democracies under pressure. And not that a foreign entity can't be at fault, but it's psychologically easy to wrongly blame "them," especially if the subject is complex.