Gore ... and bores: more Another Hole in the Head reviews

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More bloodthirsty coverage of the San Francisco IndieFest's horror-fest offshoot, Another Hole in the Head, in this week's Guardian.

Grotesque (Koji Shiraishi, Japan, 2009) When did gorno stop being sick and start becoming sad? In Koji Shiraishi’s Gurotesuku, or Grotesque – banned in the UK – a chainsaw is brought to chests, arms, legs, and fingers when really it should be brought down on this celluloid garbage. Shiraishi presents a film that is sloppy, badly written, badly acted, and is above all things, deeply unentertaining. The plot is as thin and drawn-out as one of the protagonist’s intestines: While on a date, two dumbfucks get picked up by a craaaaaazy doctor (at least I think he’s a doctor – and I think he’s lost his board certification) who proceeds to do sick but unoriginal things to them (sawing off a girl’s fingers and stringing them on a necklace for her BF? C’MON!). There are some brief moments of respite, albeit painfully acted and ridiculous respite, but the torture tries not to let up its chokehold on the audience. Unfortunately, it just ends up being a chokehold on our time. Fri/16, 5 p.m. and Sun/18, 7 p.m., Roxie.

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Boxer's better off than Brown

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I know this is political heresy, but I was encouraged by the results of the Field poll on Boxer and Fiorina. I remember back in 1982, when Milton Marks, then a liberal Republican state senator, challenged incumbent Congressmember Phil Burton -- the legendary Democratic leader -- with an anti-incumbent message fairly similar to what Fiorina is throwing at Boxer. Read more »

I, in the sky

Ariel Pink: the myth, the former solitary man, and the current group leader

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There's a moment during You Think You Really Know Me, the 2005 documentary on 1970s Midwest cult artist Gary Wilson, when the filmmakers acknowledge that their subject is not necessarily as weird as his music. "I thought he would be a little bit more," says Christina Bates, coowner of the defunct Motel Records, which reissued Wilson's 1977 jazz-rock curio You Think You Really Know Me to much acclaim. Bates' voice trails off. "He's really in complete control of his image."Read more »

RENE CAZENAVE, 1941-2010

A special genius in raising funds for the creation of a community controlled infrastructure, empowering residents of low-income neighborhoods

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Rene M. Cazenave died at home June 27 in the company of his wife, Sylvie, and sister, Denise. He is also survived by his son, Lucien, and two-week-old granddaughter, Drew. He was 69.Read more »

Street Threads: Look of the Day

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Today's look: JM, Union and Grant

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Levi Strauss imprints on Valencia

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It would appear they got in under the radar. After all, the Mission Mission blog post on the Levi's pop-up store on Valencia didn't hit until today, stirring up an American Apparel-sized storm of anti-capitalist harrumphs and hurrahs. There was even a press embargo on mentioning details about the space until yesterday.

But here it was, and here I was getting a tour of the store with various superlatively attractive employees, who were quick to remind me that the space is “not just a multi-national corporation opening up a store in a community.”

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The good news for Jerry Brown

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The press is all over the latest Field Poll, which shows Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman in a dead heat.  And it's no surprise that, thanks to a campaign that thus far has been almost entirely negative, voters aren't particularly thrilled with either candidate.Read more »

SFBG Radio: The guv's minimum wage scam

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In today's installment, Johnny and Tim talk about the governor's attempts to cut state employee pay to the federal minimum wage level -- and how that will affect the fall election. You can listen after the jump. Read more »

Hot sexy events July 7-13

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Shalt thou wander to the wicked queen's lair? Shalt thou venture amongst the bacchanal of the satyrs? The options for this sexy venture into wonderland are vast and storied. Kinky Salon is hosting a midsummer night's dream of a sex party, where petticoats are welcome, even if they're gonna be a bitch to take off when you find the nymph(o) of your wet dreams. Boylesque and Ophelia Couer de Noir provide the additional visuals for the Fairytale Masquerade costume ball (Sat/10) -- like you're even gonna need it with all the corsetry and top hats flying around the room.

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Sorting out the Adachi initiative

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Lots of press on the Adachi pension-reform measure, a proposal that would amount to cutting the pay of city workers during a recession. It turns out even Gavin Newsom doesn't like the plan:Read more »

Powell Street dancers find a TURF of their own in the heart of the city

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If you’ve ever stepped outside the BART/MUNI Powell Street Station, or passed by the three-story Forever 21, you’ve probably seen the group of street dancers between Market Street and the cable car turnaround. They make spinning on their sneakers look deceptively easy. They form right angles with their arms behind their backs. And most impressively, they flaunt fast-paced hand gestures and optically illusory movements with a crisp, clean swagger. Read more »

Appetite: Rogue wines and hearty burgers

B3 and the Winemaker's Speakeasy put a punk spin on rare corks

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B3 -- or B-cubed, as in "Bottles, Burgers and Bites" -- should finally see the light of day on July 20 (call to confirm as this is the hoped-for grand opening). I had the privilege a couple months ago of being part of a test dinner for B3, which set up shop in the former Senses space on Valencia, redone in warm, neutral tones. I’m delighted to give you the preview scoop (see original details in The Perfect Spot), as I have been following this concept since inception. Read more »

Snap Sounds: Kisses

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KISSES
"People Can Do the Most Amazing Things"
(This Is Music)

Kisses has become a Snap Sounds stalwart before even releasing a debut album, because the upcoming album's songcraft is terrific. Read more »

Lisa Cholodenko on "The Kids Are All Right"

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Writer-director Lisa Cholodenko earned attention with critically acclaimed features like High Art (1998) and Laurel Canyon (2002). Her latest movie, The Kids Are All Right, is a “personal film” about a lesbian couple raising teenagers. I spoke to Cholodenko about queer politics, explicit content, and keeping things lighthearted.

San Francisco Bay Guardian: Recently, there was a lot of controversy surrounding a Newsweek article, in which the author wrote about the difficulty of queer actors playing straight roles. I was wondering about your take on that, and on the opposite — straight actors playing queer roles. Is that something you even considered when casting?
 
Lisa Cholodenko: I’ll be honest, I was just told about this article and I didn’t read it. You know, I think it’s kind of weird thing to even discuss in a way, to me. Chiefly because I think actors’ personal lives — I just think people should have a private life, not that they should be in the closet, but that there should be a separation between professional life and personal life. And if a director feels like so-and-so, whether they’re gay or straight, would be good for a role, give them the role. What does it matter? As it turns out, I think gay people have more of an affect, whether they’re lesbians or gay men, that’s harder to camouflage in straight roles. Why that is, I mean, you could talk about that. I think it’s easier to go the other way. That’s just what it is. I say that without a value judgment. It is what it is.

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alt.sex.column: Search that drug

Where's the female viagra, already?

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Dear Readers:

Ah, flibanserin, we hardly knew ye.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee voted 10 to 1 on June 18 that flibanserin, 100 mg (Girosa; Boehringer Ingelheim), was not significantly better than placebo for hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD). They also voted unanimously that the benefits did not compensate for its adverse effects. (Medscape, June 21)

Bah.Read more »