SMOKE BREAK #1123 | Starbucks Baristas Misspell Your Name Just To Fuck With You

September 9, 2014 

If the baristas at Starbucks have been spelling names wrong on take-out coffee cups by accident to date, this satirical video by comedian Paul Gale gives them an out: they’re just ”fucking with you”.


SMOKE BREAK #1122 | Wes Anderson From Bikes, Sleds, Planes, Trains, & Automobiles

September 5, 2014 

This new supercut by Jaume R. Lloret splices together iconic POV vehicle shots from the following Wes Anderson movies: The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004), The Darjeeling Limited (2007), Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009), Moonrise Kingdom (2012), and The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014).


SMOKE BREAK #1121 | Time Lapse Shows Rise & Fall Of Beer’s Fermentation Process

This time-lapse video shows the hoppy, yeasty, worty ups and downs of the fermentation process at California’s Sierra Nevada brewery, specifically of their Bigfoot Ale. Freaky good!


SMOKE BREAK #1120 | Skateboarders Set Upon A Concrete Metropolis Bereft Of Cars

REDirect – a celebration of skateboard filmmaking between and – imagines the concrete terrain of a Los Angeles that is empty save for a handful of professional skateboarders who quickly adapt to their winfall. Everything is fair game, from off-ramps and drainage ditches to highway dividers and shoulder embankments. The makers are donating all proceeds from the dreamy video to LA County animal shelters. Dig the poignant return of reality (traffic) at the end.


SMOKE BREAK #1119 | Short Film About Bill, Who Delivers Pizza On By Fixie In Brooklyn

(via) “Bill’s fifty-two years old, has a mountain man beard, and delivers pizza on a fixie in Brooklyn. Over the course of several shifts, DELIVERY unveils an intriguing man rushing food to your door while it’s still hot and fresh.”


SMOKE BREAK #1118 | What It’s Like When Your Wifi Connection Is Lost For 2 Minutes

Julian Smith taps into your anxiety whenever the wifi cuts out. The Awesomer nails it: “We’d call it a lazy sketch, but that wordless retreat when the Internet comes back on is depressingly accurate…”


SMOKE BREAK #1117 | “Munchies” Digs In For Chef’s Night Out At Chinatown’s Bao Bei

It’s been about four and a half years since Bao Bei opened on Keefer Street. Despite its many awards, accolades, and nightly queues, sometimes it takes the jolt of an outsider’s perspective to be reminded of its unique awesomeness. This Munchies video from Vice certainly does the trick…

Tannis Ling is an ex-bartender and chef Joël Watanabe is a French Japanese ex-Montrealer. Together, they run Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie in Vancouver’s historic Chinatown district. They let us follow them around for a night to their favorite Vancouver haunts—Keefer Bar, Damso Modern Korean Cuisine, and Cascade. But to finish off the night right, the crew headed back to Bao Bei, where Joel cooked up copious amounts of fried chicken and pork belly.

Beyond the food porn (mmm, truffled dumplings!), dig the natural symbiosis between Bao Bei and The Keefer Bar down the block.


SMOKE BREAK #1116 | How To Put On A Pair Of Trousers Without The Aid Of Your Hands

(via) If pants weren’t even involved in the production of this incredible short video, we’d probably still be mesmerised by it. The guy’s poise is just that impressive. It’s like he was born to Mikhail Baryshnikov and Molly Shannon and raised in a spotless Taipei loft with nothing to do but experiment with clothes, a video camera, and a CD of the “Greatest Hits of 1986″…


SMOKE BREAK #1115 | A Fascinating Short Video Essay On How The World Went Digital

(via) It’s a very odd thing to stop and consider how we’ve lived through a transition in civilisation that was as big (if not bigger) than that which followed the invention of the printing press. We’re too immersed in how we’re personally doing making the switch to digital to really consider or appreciate the root mechanics that made the advancement possible. This superb six minute film from Delve is required watching for anyone wanting to take such a contemplative breather…

It was the change that no-one saw coming: the idea that we could take a book, a painting or a song and send it through cables and wires and even thin air to the other end of the world – and it would be identical on the other side. But this idea underpins everything about the Information Age we live in. How did we make such a mind bending transition into the digital world? And how does it work? It turns out it’s all based on a concept that is surprisingly beautiful in its simplicity. This short video essay explores what that idea is and tells you about the man who figured it all out.


SMOKE BREAK #1114 | “Gunfighter” Short Puts Tired Wild West Clichés In Crosshairs

(NSFW Language) Nick Offerman plays a disembodied, omnipotent, and (presumably) much-mustachioed Voice in a short comedy film that sees a typical Wild West gunfighter face off against a saloon brimming with seemingly predictable characters. Hilarity ensues, et cetera.


SMOKE BREAK #1113 | On The Hard-Fought Technological War Between Betamax & VHS

(via) Engineering wonk Bill Hammack is fascinated by the old fight to the death between Betamax and VHS, the two main commercial formats for video recording/playback in the 1970s and 1980s.

“In 1976 Sony introduced the Betamax video cassette recorder. It catalyzed the “ondemand” of today by allowing users to record television shows, and the machine ignited the first “new media”; intellectual property battles. In only a decade this revolutionary machine disappeared, beaten by JVC’s version of the cassette recorder. This video tells the story of why Betamax failed.”


SMOKE BREAK #1112 | Ace Flair Bartender Dresses Up Like Bruce Lee, Does His Thing


(via) Taiwanese barman Po Sheng Hsu channels his inner Bruce Lee (complete with yellow jumpsuit) to flaunt his flair bartending skills. “But I just wanted a beer…”


SMOKE BREAK #1111 | A Supercut Of Every Slow Motion Shot By Director Wes Anderson

(via) Haitian cinephile Alejandro Prullansky gives us WES, a delightful compilation of every slow motion shot by film director Wes Anderson, all set to New Slang by The Shins.


SMOKE BREAK #1110 | New Doc Film On The Phenomenon Of ‘Westernized’ Chinese Food


(via) Brooklyn-based filmmaker Ian Cheney premiered his latest work, The Search For General Tso, last month at the Tribeca Film Festival. Through the prisms of old and modern menus found in myriad malls, delivery joints and Chinatowns, the new documentary examines the history and cultural/culinary phenomenon of Westernized Chinese food, specifically the origins of the ubiquitous American favourite: General Tso’s Chicken. Watch the trailer above…

Anchoring the film is an upbeat quest, through small towns and big cities across America and beyond, to understand the origins and popularity of Chinese American food and its top-selling dish. Who was General Tso? And why do nearly fifty thousand restaurants serve deep-fried chicken bearing his name? Using this Americanized dish and its mysterious mastermind as a lens onto a larger story of immigration, adaptation, and innovation, the film follows a lighthearted journey, grounded in cultural and culinary history, through restaurants, Chinatowns, and the American imagination. Visits to present-day Chinese restaurants spark forays into the past, guided by chefs, scholars, and the occasional opinionated customer. The film’s lively soundtrack and shadow-puppet animations contribute both whimsy and momentum, as viewers find they’re on a search to answer a deeper question: how did America’s Chinese food become so… American?


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