Category Archives: Fun

Have you seen Les Revenants?

What would happen if the dead came back to life and tried to rejoin their loved ones in their daily routines?  This is the question posed by the French supernatural drama Les Revenants (The Returned).  In a small mountain town dominated by a huge dam, people long dead begin to return to their families.  Both the undead and their loved ones are bewildered.  And strange things begin to happen:  there are random power outages, and the level of water in the reservoir mysteriously lowers to reveal buildings and animals long dead.

The first season was broadcast in French with subtitles on Sundance TV in the fall of 2013; the second season, which begins six months after the events of the first season, began on Sundance on October 31, 2015.  Although not available on the UR cable system, full episodes are available on the Sundance TV site and app (iOS and Android).  Beautifully made, this is television well worth watching.


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The 10 Most Difficult Languages

Are you an adventurous language learner?  Although the languages listed here are difficult, they are certainly not impossible to learn–and you can take classes here in Japanese, Arabic, and Mandarin.  (Some other languages are available through the Global Studio’s Self-Directed Program.)

Arabic Manuscript

Go to article!

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Joanna Rants–Nine Types of Spanish Accents

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Deutschland 83 Premieres on SundanceTV in June

Alex-Edel-Martin-Rauch-Moritz-Stamm-Deutschland-83The first German-language TV series  to be shown on US TV, Deutschland 83 will air on SundanceTV beginning June 17, 2015.  Described as a “coming-of-age spy thriller”, the eight-part series is a coproduction of Germany’s RTL and Sundance.  The creators and authors are the American journalist Anna Winger and her husband Jörg Winger, a showrunner for German TV and the executive producer of this new series.

The series is set with the “real culture wars and political events of Germany in the 1980s.”  Martin Rauch is a young East German sent to the West as an undercover spy.  Hiding within the West German army, he is tasked with the gathering of NATO military secrets.

The series had its world premiere at the 65th Berlinale International Film Festival.

For more information, read the SundanceTV page and like Deutschland 83 on Facebook.

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Get Acquainted with the Eurovision Song Contest!

eurovisioinbetter_forblogWhat event attracts over 180 million viewers every spring?  The Eurovision Song Contest.  This event, which began in May 1956, is a European television tradition and a definite pop culture phenomenon.  In 2015 the last rounds of the Contest will take place in Vienna, Austria, because Austria is the home of the 2014 winner.  The competition has already begun as countries have started selecting their songs.  (Each country participating selects one song for the competition.)  The ‘Euro’ refers to the European Broadcasting Union, but countries well outside Europe are often allowed to compete.  In 2015, Australia is participating!  Winners are determined by the votes of the participating countries, and the voting is often as much political as musical.

Interested?  You’ll find links to the selected songs and information about the Contest on the official Eurovision website.  ESCUnited is a fan website that includes opinions from panels of reviewers.  It has a presence on Facebook as well.  Explore!  Perhaps you’ll get to know the next European pop star.  Past contestants include Céline Dion and ABBA.

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Le Petit Prince — La bande-annonce

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It’s the African Film Weekend!


All are invited to the Tenth African Film Weekend starting today, Friday, October 3 in the Ukrop Auditorium in the Robins School of Business. The theme of this year’s program is The City and the State in Contemporary Africa. Professor Carina Yervasi from Swarthmore College will present and discuss the films, which are from Sénégal, Zambia, South Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Madagascar.

The 2014 10th annual African Film Weekend
The City and the State in Contemporary Africa.

Friday October 3: 3:00 & 7:30 p.m.

• Tey (Aujourd’hui), directed by Alain Gomis (Senegal/France, 2012)  (86 minutes)

Saturday, October 4

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. (Shorts)

•Mwansa the Great directed by Rungano Nyoni (Zambia/ UK, 2011).  (23 min) Appropriate for ages 7 and up.
•Varavarankely directed by Sitraka Randriamahaly (Madagascar, 2008-2010) (silent animation, 3 min.) Appropriate for all ages
•Y en a marre /Fed Up directed by Adams Sie (Senegal, 2013). (19 minutes)

9:45 – 11: 15 a.m.

•A Letter to Nelson Mandela, directed by Khalo Matabane (South Africa/Germany, 2013). (85 mins)

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

•Atalaku (Crieur), directed by Dieudo Hamadi (République Démocratique du Congo/ France, 2013). (60 minutes)


2:00 p.m.

•Aya de Yopougon / Aya of Yop City, directed by Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie (Ivory Coast/France, 2013) (84 mins)


***All screenings will take place in the Ukrop Auditorium in the Robins School of Business and this event is free and open to the public.
Parking is available outside of the Robins School of Business and there are no restrictions on where you may park.


Support for African Film Weekend comes from the Office of International Education, the Media Resource Center, the International Studies program and the Department of Modern Literatures and Cultures.

Photo Credit: CharlesFred via Compfight cc

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