Sacré Bleu!

by Kieran Healy on November 10, 2005

Via “Jamie Zawinski”: comes “C’était un Rendezvous”: A short and very fast film:

On an August morning in 1978, French filmmaker Claude Lelouch mounted a gyro-stabilized camera to the bumper of a Ferrari 275 GTB and had a friend, a professional Formula 1 racer, drive at breakneck speed through the heart of Paris. The film was limited for technical reasons to 10 minutes; the course was from Porte Dauphine, through the Louvre, to the Basilica of Sacre Coeur. No streets were closed, for Lelouch was unable to obtain a permit. The driver completed the course in about 9 minutes, reaching nearly 140 MPH in some stretches. The footage reveals him running real red lights, nearly hitting real pedestrians, and driving the wrong way up real one-way streets.

The film has been “remastered and released on DVD”: You can watch the whole thing “here”: (Big download: about 34MB.) Bump it up to full screen mode or twice the normal size to get the full effect. The middle third of the film, when he’s right in the middle of Paris, is just unbelievable, as he runs six or seven red lights, screams around garbage trucks and narrowly misses several pedestrians as he flies down narrow, cobbled streets. Apparently there are all kinds of stories about the film, including whether the director did the driving himself in his own car. Having just watched it, I’d happily insinuate I could drive like that, too.

SSRN on Law and Politics

by Henry Farrell on November 10, 2005

I’ve “complained in the past”: about the lack of an SSRN equivalent for political scientists (while APSA has put together a portal site for papers, it still leaves something to be desired; e.g. no stable permalinks). Now SSRN has created a new “working paper series”: which aims to bring together “international studies in comparative law and political economy.” This looks to be a great resource – the idea is to bring scholars in relevant fields of comparative politics, comparative law, international political economy and economic sociology into a single debate. There’s a lot of fascinating work on new modes of international and domestic governance – but it’s difficult to keep track of, because it’s split across several disciplines.Worth “signing up for”: