CULT FILM Erstwhile cofounder of San Francisco's late, lamented Werepad a "beatnik space lounge" (among other things) Jacques Boyreau, also a filmmaker (Candy Von Dewd), lives in Portland, Ore., these days. But he's dropping into town again with a characteristic surprise package in the form of the Supertrash Peepshow at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Read more »
70MM MANIA With everyone vulnerable to psychic Taser attacks through e-mail and cell phones, you don't have to peek over shoulders to be a space vampire today. Is there any doubt that space vampirism is running rampant?
The answer, my friends and fellow Criswell worshippers, is no. This makes the sheer lack of space vampire movies downright shocking. Leave it to Midnites for Maniacs programmer Jesse Hawthorne Ficks to confront the problem by reviving one of the greatest space vampire movies ever, Tobe Hooper's 1985 Lifeforce. Read more »
CULT FILM "WAAAR-ee-erzzz come out to PLAAY-ee-ay!" This catchphrase, first spoken in an annoyingly unforgettable singsong (and supposedly improvised) by actor David Patrick Kelly, has infiltrated pop culture to the extent that it's been sampled or mimicked by musicians from Twisted Sister to the Wu-Tang Clan to the Offspring. If you don't know how could you not? it's from The Warriors, Walter Hill's 1979 urban action joyride. Read more »
FESTIVAL REPORT Leave it to me to pack as much violence as possible into my first days at the Toronto International Film Festival. (And that's with only having seen one entry in the horror-heavy Midnight Madness series.) In Spanish spookfest The Orphanage featuring a Poltergeist shout-out for Zelda Rubenstein fans fingers are slammed in doors, limbs are snapped, and a few unfortunate, uh, accidents occur. Jodie Foster goes aggro with a cause in The Brave One, poppin' pricks with a pistol (and other handy tools). Read more »
FILM On any given day, on any given Muni, you're likely to hear John Carpenter's Halloween theme trilling out of some kid's cell. Sprung from one gloriously terrifying, terrifyingly simple idea (in a word: babysitters!), the seminal horror series welcomes its ninth installment with Rob Zombie's remake of the 1978 original. I can hear you, horror snob: "Ninth installment? Remake? Read more »
DVD Chrome Dreams' Under Review DVD series is one of the better things to happen for music geekdom since 180-gram vinyl or the twofer CD reissue. Where else are you going to find sober analysis of Captain Beefheart's mid-'70s tragic band period or an in-depth discussion of the four Mott the Hoople albums that came out before All the Young Dudes (Columbia, 1972)?
My first brush with the series came a couple of years ago, with one of the earliest installments, Queen under Review: 19731980. Read more »
ZEITGEIST This year just may go down as the one when nerds finally ruled the school, scattering HP calculators, parentally purchased button-downs, and World of Warcraft guild master credentials as they tripped on their own shoelaces on their way into WonderCon or the Lick Observatory. The infestation of all screens big and small hasn't been quite so intense since the Ronald Reaganera '80s, when nerds were regularly toasted on TV's Happy Days, then found fame in the cineplex's Revenge of the Nerds (1984). Read more »
On the Discovery Channel show Man vs. Wild, Bear Grylls parachutes into remote wildernesses, from the swampy Everglades to the freezing Scottish Highlands, and finds his way out, seemingly on his own. However, in an article posted on the BBC News Web site July 24, survival consultant Mark Weinert alleged that Grylls spent some nights in a hotel during the Hawaii episode, among other solo-survival no-no's. Whatever the case, Man vs. Wild is, in my opinion, the greatest nature-survival show since Marty Stouffer's Wild America. Read more »
1. Tress MacNeille Julie Kavner and Hank Azaria always get props, but how about throwing down for my hero, the voice behind characters such as scathing Agnes Skinner, the brilliant-when-coherent Cat Lady, single working woman Cookie Kwan ("Stay outta the West Side!"; "Sign here, initial here, kiss me here!"), and Cookie's sex-predator pal Lindsey Naegle, who appears as everything from a network executive ("We're losing male tweens! Read more »