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Declare independence! Don't let them do that to you!!

Friday, June 24, 2005

2 Days Til Tuesday 

21244315 66984F1F50Chandra rolled into Pittsburgh one Tuesday night, and drove off again the next day. Not after we walked out of a small chunk of the bill at Pamela's. (Don't worry we made it right the next week). Then almost exactly one week later, Chandra returned! We walked in the dark woods and saw the sun rise over distant tree lined mountain tops.

We heard the crickets chirp and snore, until we realized that people live in the forest too. We saw a wall of mist slowly grow before our eyes until it looked like the very real and palpable barrier to heaven itself. We ran around, caught a race of the National Senior Olympics. 21244304 9D4Fe7Dad6 MPrinted thousands of pages of Fat Tuesday scripts on 5 papers in 20 minutes, got our neighbors to call the cops on us because of my poor parking advice and attended a Fat Tuesday Kickoff party.

That my friends, went VERY well. Four to five dozen people crammed into Zooty's to pledge their support to our creative cause, and I think I felt something happen there I'm not fully sure about just yet. More on this as I mature. Let's just say, making movies is two types of jobs, maybe three, and I can see how it can be easy to be good at one part of that job but bad in the other. Which would explain the oodles of highly budgeted crap that gets released every year.

21244334 3F59671872 MAnyway, Eric and Incredibly Thin and the rest of the Dark of Noon bunch really came through, the evening was a great success for all involved, and really helped to generate a great deal of energy and excitement for the whole thing. I missed Mickey, and on more than one occasion my thoughts returned to last summers revelries. Don't fear Chemers, theres plenty of fun just round the corner. And by fun I mean 20 hour shooting days.
Oh man, check out this cool picture Chandra took of me,
21244326 764Cd2F4Eano photoshop no effects, weird huh? That's one of the few pics we actually have of the party. Too busy having fun and pressing palms I guess.
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Later on that life, I saw a free Aimee Mann show. I'd snagged a really good spot ahead of the first row and managed to get some decent photos. I'm not tooting my own horn here, (YES I AM), but Aimee's tour photographer liked my spot so much that I let him use it and we traded info in the hopes of swapping photos later on. NEAT! More on that as developments arise.
Aimee was good. She really has a tremendous strength, that fascinates me. It comes through live, but with her it was all about the music, and I appreciated that. No great theatrics, or stage performing, which might have been boring for people who were just there for free music, but I found that once she had announced that it was her last song I had lost track of time entirely. I had become lost her tales of love and loneliness. 21244758 9474E0A160 OAt one point, a guy with a bouquet of flowers walked up to the stage and offered Aimee one between songs. She responded; "Sorry, buddy, but I'm kind of in the middle of a show here." hah! Her guitarist however, obliged the old man, who wore a great big smile, and as he walked away, Aimee said: "I don't know why i invite my dad to these shows anymore." HAH!
Later on that night I watched News Radio with Jim and Quinn. And was reminded of how I once spent a summer with Izzy watching this and Star Trek with complete satisfaction. Man, that Phil Hartman was something special wasnt he?

Saturday, June 18, 2005

8 Days til Tuesday 

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A thought:
Listening to too much Joy Division might be bad for you.

A link:
New miracle drug, makes EVERYTHING better.

When I Burn This Place Down from the album "Get Off The Cross... We Need The Wood For The Fire" by Firewater

Sunday, June 12, 2005

I've Come to a Very Important Decision 

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The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou was definitely the Best Film of 2004 (that I saw).
Once again, Anderson crafts a tale so rich and deeply impassioned that it was impossible for me to pull my eyes away. His characters feel as if theyve sprung from the pages of a novel, their maturity and intelligence challenges each other as well as the audience. This is not your typical Hollywood dreck. Anderson doesn't ask that we simply love or hate a character, he fills his film with dozens of reasons for either argument, and leaves the decision to you. The prime example for this is the woebegone character of Steve Zissou played by Bill Murray, who gives a performance that is so dispirited and self-concious that you think he had just stepped off the set of Lost in Translation and started shooting this in the same afternoon. Not to say, that this performance too closely mirrors that in Copola's indie darling, but it seems that these two directors are able to illicit moving and honest performances from an actor who has made his bread and butter playing unbelievably zany caricatures. While Steve Zissou is publicly known an adventurer/filmmaker he's also a fading star coping with the approach of his twilight years, while resolving the disconnect that exists between the heroic character that is pinned on dozens of cub scouts bedroom walls and his true-self. In fact, even more than the plot of the reunited father and son (superbly and subtly played by Owen Wilson), The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou is about accepting some roles when you must, and discarding others when their time has come. It's a marvelous tale of majestic triumph, and staggering loss. Easily, Andersons most mature to date. Do i even need to get into the visuals? It's a Wes Anderson film, that means frames that are JAM-PACKED with information, long shots that are VERY complex, and hilarious montages with a perfect music accompaniment. Of particular note are the underwater scenes which were shot in saturated color with clay animation sea-life. The combination, makes the ocean feel as magical for me as it did in Finding Nemo. The colors dear friends, the colors!!! Also, not to be missed are Seu Jorge's Portuguese adaptations of David Bowie classics. All in all, since it's too late to catch this one in a theater, scurry to your local DVD purveyor and rent this masterpiece today!
4.5/5 STARS
(Half a star taken for slight pacing issues that are ultimately more than forgivable).

While I'm playing the critic here, I listened to Coldplays latest album. You know, except for a few really good songs, as a whole I'm really unimpressed by this band. I just dont see it. They feel a bit boring and uninspired.

Life On Mars? from the album "The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou Soundtrack" by Seu Jorge

Friday, June 03, 2005

Aremnian In The City or The Short Road to a Long Drink 

Holy Shit Ani Came to town! And while she was only around for what was essentially three days turned into a couple of nights fun was had!
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Over at Zooty's Cyco-Mike (of Angry Moon Tattoo fame) bought rounds for the house and made some new friends in the process. Funny how buying a round of $6/shot Anejo Tequila will do that. Meanwhile Jim singlehandedly obliterated sobriety from the premises by goading every man woman and drunkard into some sort of mini-drinking contest with him. And let me tell you, no hill was too small, Jim was damned determined that night to win every battle. Listen: every bartender needs its own Jim. Somebody to lure his fellow patrons into letting loose with the libations. It's buddy system bar-tending... and it's the way of the future. I'm onto something. Hah, Professional Drinker, yeah there's a certain ring to that I like.Anyway, Jimbo pretty much suckered every able body into some form of drunkard state, even Josh fell prey to Jims shrewd shenanigans. Everyone that is, except Ani, who had been previously warned of Jims cunning bastardy and paid him no never mind. Clever one, that Ani.
Hot damn if ole Miguel Scotto wasn't bubbled to the bricks with Spirits. It might have had something to do with the top-shelf Agave shots, or the Guinness chugging contest, or perhaps the Grey Goose shots, or maybe it was the Yeungling chugging impromptu contest. It had to be seen to believe, these guys were drinking em down faster than the tap could pour em! Jim would down a Guinness, in response Jasmine would down two, in retaliation Mike would flick the glasses off his face and giggle, and Danny (bar owner) and Tom (bar bouncer) stared in slack-jawed disbelief, it was a drinking battle of epic proportions where Larry was the winner and temperance was the loser. Yes, Indeed, I'm sure we'll all have some special memories of that night for a while to come. Well, everyone but Mike.

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