Frameline34: Local drama "The Stranger in Us"

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Local filmmaker Scott Boswell may not have set out to make the film he ended up with, but he stands behind the finished product. The Stranger In Us stars ShortbusRaphael Barker as Anthony, a young man who moves from Virginia to San Francisco in order to live with his boyfriend Stephen (Scott Cox). When the relationship turns violent, Anthony finds solace in his friendship with Gavin (Adam Perez), an underage street huster. I spoke to Boswell and Barker about the film’s origins, its unique content, and what this year’s San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival says about the future of queer cinema.

San Francisco Bay Guardian: What was your inspiration for The Stranger In Us? Where did the story come from?

Scott Boswell: Ultimately the story ended up being fairly autobiographical. But it started in a different place. Originally — and Raphael knows this because we talked about it — originally, I had intended to do a much more experimental film, kind of a hybrid documentary-narrative, because of my fascination with the Polk Street, Tenderloin area, which I’ve always had since I moved here in the mid ‘90s. I had considered doing a bit of a portrait of the neighborhood, and kind of infusing actors into it, just shooting a lot of footage and seeing what we came up with. There’s a part of me that wishes I had still done that, but in all honesty, I can say that after Raphael expressed some interest in the project, I suddenly felt like it needed to be more narrative in its scope. He didn’t suggest that. It was just my intuition around the project. So I had been talking to him about doing it for months, without even having a complete script, and continued writing it and auditioning actors. Eventually it became much more traditional in terms of its narrative. It became what it is now.

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Endangered Species Act protection sought for Franklin’s bumble bee

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I’ve been obsessed with bees in general, and bumble bees in particular for some time now. I'm fascinated by the bumble bee's thick tundra- adapted pelt that allows it to forage for nectar in way colder temperatures than your average sun-loving Italian honey bee.
And then there’s the bumble bee's relatively hardcore social structure, in which only the young bumble bee queens over winter, emerging alone in the spring to start colonies afresh.Read more »

Why McChrystal had to go

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Respect for civilian control over the military chain of command. That's what Obama talked about in his comments on "accepting the resignation of" (that is, firing) Gen. Stanley McChrystal. And it was the right point to make. The president noted that McChrystal's conduct "doesn't meet the standard of a commanding general," and I think what he was really saying was this:Read more »

Boom boom boom! SF's got a horse in the World Cup song race

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What's your favorite World Cup song? We've covered some smoothies in Gavin Hardkiss' "Mundo Via Afrika," and chatted with Eux Autres about their contribution to the games. Salon.com just poured a cooler of haterade all over Shakira's head for her "Waka Waka," (probably because they don't like Fozzie Bear). But there's tons of delightfully earnest attempts to encapsulate-cash in on the futbol crazy sweeping the globe for the next month. Angelique Kidjo has hit us up with a Curtis Mayfield cover for Africa, and K'Naan... well I love K'naan. His video has a lot of backflips on beaches, which I support. But did you know that SF has a hat-tricking local troubador of our own?

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Appetite: Elizabeth Falkner's fantastic new dessert menu at Bubble Lounge

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Elizabeth Falkner is easily one of the widely acknowledged pastry greats in the US and chef of two SF restaurants, including Citizen Cake, which is moving to Fillmore Street, hopefully open by the beginning of July. Bubbly lover Falkner has created something sweet at Bubble Lounge, eager to take on creating desserts meant to pair with champagne/sparkling wine. Read more »

Bike Plan hearing yields lots of detail but no decision

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The fate of San Francisco's Bicycle Plan and the four-year-old court injunction against implementing its projects remains unclear following a nearly three-hour hearing today that delved deeply into the minutiae of traffic studies, mitigation requirements, and the dictates of the California Environmental Quality Act.Read more »

alt.sex.column: Clip show

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Dear Readers:

Nah, I'm not really going to saddle you with a "clips" column — that would be cheesy. But I do happen to have a bunch of interestingish non-question stuff from my inbox, so bear with me.

First up, an article from The New York Times called "The Perils Of Sexual Roundelays," which is kind of refreshing because, despite the title, it actually pokes some holes in the "ZOMG hooking up and friends with benefits will be the death of love and marriage as we know it" cultural panic usually expressed in articles called "the perils of sexual" whatever. Sort of. The article (www.nytimes.com/2010/05/09/fashion/09Studied.html) describes what may be the first major study of non-monogamous behavior among adults). The study sets out to examine whether what the researchers call "non-serious relationships," (a.k.a. "hooking up") lead to "concurrent partnerships" (hooking up with lots of people, a.k.a. being a big old' slut").

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Snap Sounds: H.U.N.X.

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H.U.N.X.
"The Locomotion"/"Can a Man Hear Me"/"I Vant to Suck Your Cock"
(www.myspace.com/gayestmusicever)

Kylie Minogue's take on "The Locomotion" has been a highlight of Hunx's DJ sets. It set the dancefloor afire at a Goldies party a few years back. His version is buoyed by Nick Weiss' Hi-NRG-meets-happy-house production.

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The Daily Blurgh: Grifter raccoons, literary subway stations, the Streep!!!

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Curiosities, quirks, oddites, and items from around the Bay and beyond

Beware of teary raccoon eyes when in Davis.

*****

It's no battleship Potemkin but the cruiser Varyag, which recently docked in our waters, is no slouch. Neither is its "relaxation cabin."

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What the "Defund ACORN Act" is really about

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Last September, the US Congress approved the Defund ACORN Act without investigating the charges leveled against ACORN.Read more »

Old reliable true confessions -- John Waters on secret idols, polar opposites, and role models

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By Ryan Lattanzio

John Waters. Forefather of filth, pundit of provocation. Not to be mistaken, of course, for 1934 Academy Award recipient John Waters, who kept coming up in my research of the other John Waters.

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The real issue in Afghanistan

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The Rolling Stone article on Gen. Stanley McChrystal has the blog and pundit world all atwitter, with calls for the general's resignation, deep sighs of remorse, lofty comments about the sanctity of the commander in chief and the chain of command and lots more. The dude screwed up; you don't let your aides dis the president like that. But that's really off the point.Read more »

Street Threads: Look of the Day

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Today's Look: Katie, 18th Street and Guerrero

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Hands Across the Sand says “No to offshore drilling, yes to clean energy"

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I got an email today from Moveon.org advising me, “There's a huge event happening this weekend at a beach near you.”
“In the wake of the giant BP oil spill in the Gulf, tens of thousands of people are getting together on beaches around the world for a massive event called "Hands Across The Sand,” the moveon.org folks said. Read more »

Celebration at Big Sur -- 2010 edition

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Watching Celebration at Big Sur, the film that documents the 1969 Big Sur Folk Festival, I witness the crystalline Pacific Ocean, members of the audience freaking out in face paint, and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell and more singing merry tunes about coming together and putting a lil' love in your heart. Read more »