29 December 2008

hang in there...

hang in there with me, dear friends. i promise to go on a blog rampage shortly after the new years, at which time one will want to check back a couple of times a week.

but for right now, i'm still on holiday vacation, and although i spend time gathering materials, i don't do any mental lifting during the holidays.

hence, no work. at least not lately.

but fear not, nose goes back to grindstone on january 3rd.

i promise.

07 December 2008

the only thing i want for christmas...

is for this fucking guy to make a full album...

02 December 2008

tis the season

since films like revolutionary road and doubt are often cited as oscar bait, does that make the process of making such a film oscarbation.

are sam mendes and phillip seymour hoffman mere oscarbators?

cause i heard that just causes movies like blindness.

01 December 2008

everyone's a winner...

well it looks like zach wins the mix tape by default. i will assume that this is due to an unbelievable plague of writer's block that hit the blogosphere while i was gone and not to the lack of want for the prize in question. anyway zach will recieve his awesome prize sometime soon.

as for the rest of you, since i am feeling generous i will give you the info on a dope new website and on the recent upgrades to an old favorite. because here, everyone's a winner.

over at the criterion collection website they have undergone a rather interesting facelift in their attempt to spread the message of cinematic history to the masses. through the application of streaming video and a partnership with another site that i will rhapsodize about later in this post, criterion is now allowing their catalog to be "rented" for online viewing. titles can be viewed as many times as one desires over the span of one week for the nominal fee of five u.s. dollars. then, if one decides to buy the dvd hard copy of the film(with all the delicious extras criterion is famous for) the five dollars will be credited to the purchase on the site. it's a try before you buy preview that rolls over into a sort of gift certificate. how sweet is that?

almost as sweet as the site of its partners in this venture, the auteurs. the auteurs is a site dedicated to the cinephile. in addition to the numerous forums available to sound off on all things cinematic, it also hosts quite a large collection of films in high def for your viewing pleasue. some of the films cost a fiver but the majority of them are free to view simply by clicking on the play button. in addition to great films from all over the planet like the dardenne's l'enfant and jia's the world, the auteurs also includes in their selections every month a programmed festival of films from the criterion catalog for free viewing. this month the festival is titled "cruel stories of youth" and includes films like victor erice's spirit of the beehive(the best film ever made) as well as louis malle's au revoir les enfants, catherine breillat's fat girl, and peter brook's lord of the flies, which i watched last night and which looks great(much better than the similar netflix apparatus)

so if you find yourself sickened by the slew of hollywood shit like four christmases this season, and you just can't wait for the new despelchin or aronofsky's the wrestler, do yourself a favor and click on the links above. it's the gift that keeps on giving from your friends here at beer cannes.

vive la cine.

22 November 2008

holler at your boy

some of you may have heard the rumor, and let me assure you it is true. the old beer cannes is taking this highwire act on the road to the bahamas for a week of swim up bars and on site sports book. but fear not, dear readers as i am leaving you with a fair bit of intrigue.

for a while now, i have been wanting to find a way to make the good old b.c. a little bit more fan friendly, a little bit more lively. also for a while i have been wanting to distribute prizes as a way into this new, interactive frenzy of my dreams. but up until lately i couldn't figure out what to distribute. then a few posts ago i wrote an old fashioned ode to the glory of a mixtape, and it hit me. why don't i give one of those away?

so that is what we are doing. in the first of hopefully many beer cannes contests to come the prize shall be a mix tape personally made by hand from the staff here at beer cannes. and it will be awesome.

right now i imagine all my readers jumping up in amazement and asking in a fairly boisterous fashion, "how do i win this...i want it so bad."

well i will tell you how you can win it.

as great fans of the diverse voices of the myriad peoples out in cyberspace, we here at the beer cannes are first and foremost about a good read. we check blogs daily, usually in the morning as if they were the gosphel that the good old star definitely is not. we know there are many talented writers out there that we know of, and probably a million more that we as of yet do not know.

so with this in mind, we are sponsoring the first ever beer cannes short essay contest.

in the comment section of this post, beer cannes asks that you write your best essay that consists of no more than three paragraphs. these pieces can be about anything that is running through your mind and are bound by no rules beyond those mandated by common decency, not that i figure that will be a problem. the winner will be judged on content, artistic merit, and basic je ne sais quoi by the staff here at beer cannes and beer cannnes alone. the contest ends on the friday after thanksgiving at noon and the winner will be chosen shortly thereafter, most likely opening to rave reviews of their verbal virtuosity on this here site. their awesome, hand made, kick ass mix tape will be made by the czar of beer cannes and delivered before christmas. one entry per person please.

good luck. i look forward to some genius, as it will be required in the quest for this tape

i will appreciate the struggles while i am giving thanks and eating turkey on the beach.
don't freeze...peace.

18 November 2008

is 2112 a fraternity?

i remember walking on campus at iupui in front of the old library on my way to a class in cavanaugh hall. it was early in the semester and scribbled in chalk along the pavement were advertisements for fraternities and sororities. join alpha epsilon! rush delta nu! and as i caught myself thinking, does iupui even have frats? and if so...why? but then that thought was cast assunder in a most meaningful way when toward the end of the line read a quite elaborate(for a chalk drawing) sign asking me to rush 2112.

i thought about it for a minute. and in that minute, i decided that if i were going to ever join a drinking institution...urm...fraternity, that i would probably be inclined to join this one over all the other, more greecian formula choices at my disposal.

but then i thought, nah..fuck that. i like to drink alone.

see i guess the thing is, i don't really "get" rush. and i am writing this blog because i feel that a good portion of the people who occasionally get down on here are indeed rush fans(fanatics) and i am honestly just looking for some input. i mean, i get that they are extremely talented musicians and that they employ quite intricate song structures and all, but i just really am having a hard time finding anything catchy in their songs.

given, all i ever hear are the songs the old q95 and jack recycle on two for tuesdays and shit.(freewill, tom sawyer and what not) and all those songgs play like bland pseudo- anthems. which sucks becausea i am the type of guy that judges songs based on a first listen's instant impression and second time's singability, so i needs my songs catchy ans sig-a-longable. i don't find either of those qualities in rush, but feel that it could be that i am just not hearing the undiscovered pop gems of their oeuvre. i mean, so many people seem to love them, so i figure it has to be in their somewhere, but still i ask: do rush write poppy songs? ever?

because i might like to hear them as they will give me a reason to sing along to rush other than for the joy of knowing that i, and everyone else...ever, have a better voice.

oh yeah, and fuck the red sox!

14 November 2008

an infinite playlist

lately, i have been feeling really nostalgic for the pop culture artifacts from my past that i believed i had moved on from. i've been playing vice city(my favorite game from my college years) i've been talking incessantly with my cousin jon about the britpop that provided the soundtrack for my high school years. i've even been allowing my co-worker buzz to listen to hank fm at work on the chance that i may hear an old randy travis or george strait song that my mom used to listen to when i was a child.

but the thing i have been jonesing for the most is mix tapes.

in our ipod, cd rewriter universe the mix tape seems to have rapidly gone the way of the buffalo. and that is just sad as mix tapes often provided the best, most effective way to produce a cohesive playlist. i never really got into the mix cd thing because to make one, one didn't even need to listen to the songs that were being put on them. most mix cd's ended up as just a jumble of random songs that generally didn't have the flow or continuity that marked the best mix tapes. i don't have an ipod, but i imagine the same problems exist.

there was a very distinct artform to the mix tape. i used to make like one a week in my teens as i was on this journey , this stoned quest to find the optimal track listing. i took it as a personal challenge to my musical knowledge to find the perfect follow up to songs like big star's thirteen or suede's trash or ride's vapour trail. and while they weren't often perfect, they at least had alot of thought and alot of time put into them. and for that they ruled. i knew mix cd's basically sucked from the beginning when i realized i was putting more time and effort into the designing of the covers than i was into the designing of the playlist. hell, on most of the mix tapes i made, i never even made a cover or a track listing because the individual songs didn't matter as much as the overall feel of the tape.

i miss cassettes and mourn their near extinction. occasionally, i will still attempt to make one, but i usually give up about halfway through as i know i am doing it only for myself. you can't really give one to anybody anymore because you never know who even has the aparatus with which to play it. and that is just sad because it has led me to a time in which i may never know what song or songs could create a bridge between lil wayne and led zeppelin. taylor swift may never sit next to alex chilton. and i may never again get to use them all in an attempt to extend the olive branch of friendship to a fellow music lover.

if i were gonna make a mix tape right now these songs would be on it:

04 November 2008

my list in lists

i did my patriotic duty today, and i hope everyone else did as well.

therefore i figure, this,of all days, is the day to be positive. right?

i figure, this is the day to get out from under the funk of the negative attitude towards everything that's been exposed lately. let's just get up and brush that dirt off our shoulders. let's put good vibe out in the world.

i figure, what's the worst that could happen?
so here goes, the things i feel positive about.

has everyone read the latest post over on ryan's blog, my year in lists. that is a pretty darn good, short read. and i highly recommend checking it out. that is a very welcome edition of his often essay deprived column, and i hope he keeps them coming. as for the guy maddin vs. kevin smith argument...

i have not yet made it to the zach and miri porno film as i know, like ryan, pretty much exactly what i am going to get. unlike ryan however, this perturbs me greatly as i still long for the glory days of the original trilogy, especially mallrats which i love more as time goes by. snoochie boochies. the argument about kevin smith's lack of visual prowess, actually makes me more pissed at kevin smith because i realize that his comedy is derived mostly from the writing and the general tomfoolery amongst the film's component parts. the fact that his act has grown stale is far more disheartening than what i find from maddin, as it tends to represent a more constrained, less willing to take some serious chances style for smith. i mean, clerks 2. i almost cried after i saw that piece of shit. that donkey scene alone seemed so contrived for the post tom green generation that it about made me want to puke.

but then i remember that it doesn't matter and this is an exercise in positivity and that even if you wanted to, you couldn't cross out all the fuck you's in the world. and i don't want to try. and i definitely don't want to be just another fuck you so... on with positivity, and on to guy maddin.

a friend and i recently got drunk and watched brand upon the brain! the lush criterion packaging had this really awesome feature that allowed us to pick our narrator for the film from a list of people who had done live readings at various screenings of the film worldwide. being that we was like, under the influence and such, we absolutely had to listen to crispin glover narration. and it was well worth it. freaking awesome.

and while my man ryan raises some valid criticisms of the relative staleness guy maddin's work, i tend to see it more as this continuing exploration of his own unique style. unlike gonzales-inaritu and merelies, he doesn't just work from the exact same template of both style and emotions every time out. brand upon the brain! is not my favorite(probably dracula or the saddest music) but it is at least an interesting take on what he does. it is dreamy, it is caught up in the genre-specific workings of the late silent/early talkie film, but it is also a fascinating exploration of memory and its relation to time and place that delves deeper than any of his film's have delved before. his clever staccatto editing patterns really drove home the utter nonexistence of the differentiation between memory and hallucination, as they both become thoughts on an equal plane through their interrelation to temporal and physical properties. and keep in mind that it was made to be an experienced work of art employing orchestral accompanyment and on the spot story telling principles to help his film transcend the usual boundries of merely sitting in front of a screen and viewing cookie cutter shit.

in guy maddin, i still see an artist growing and redefining his craft. he is immensely talented and works in a style that really allows that idiosyncratic talent to shine through. even though i will end up seeing zach and miri, i believe kevin smith, at this point is just shoveling out police academy IV, a shit sequel to his two already bad sequels to a good film.

in the old days, they just got some hack off the street to put his name as the director of that shit and you took producer credit. whatever. oh well, kev...up with jersey girl 9, and go run your little college tours for all i give a fuck

huckabee/palin 2012!!!

four more beers!

31 October 2008

president of what...

man, this election season has been a letdown. all these jackasses in powersuits talking about this and that and the economy and taxes and schools and such. but nobody really seems to be talking about the real reasons behind these problems. nobody wants to do a little introspection.

honestly, do you wanna know why america is fucked up? america is fucked up because americans are fucked up. i mean look around. our populace in its current incarnation is probably the least likely in history to take up the role of the good semaritan. hell, we can't even find time in our busy schedule of accumulating things to be polite to one another anymore. everybody is so concerned with getting their one dollar double cheeseburger that they don't care who they cut in the mcdonald's line. just so long as they get to stuff their obese, uncouth faces.

face it jack, americans are lazy, fat, ignorant and above all, perfectly content to be as such. they want to work their forty hours, go out and buy big screen tv's and houses out of their budget, and then cry when the repo man comes to collect. all because they were too stupid to realize that just because you see it on mtv cribs doesn't really mean that it is necessary for survival(or that it is affordable)

and all this rampant consumerism has just made us more greedy, less fulfilled, and ultimately unhappy because our life isn't filled with the type of everything promised by our fucked up idea of what the american dream is. it is the pursuit of happiness. but in our fast food culture, if happiness isn't served up in bio-degradable paper wrapping, we want no part of it. i mean seriously, do they expect us to work for the products that should rightfully be ours as americans?

and then we have the nerve to try to tell other cultures that this is the way to live. fuck us.

america sucks right now because the average american sucks right now. learn how to say please and thanks. learn how to be thankful for the oppurtunities you have. do this and maybe we will begin to climb out of the murderous, poverty stricken, verge of financial ruin hellhole that our nation has become.

fuck obama, fuck mccain. change starts from within. change yourself first, and stop looking at others as some sort of messsiah that will make all your troubles go away. because even if they did, your greedy ass will just make new ones.

either that or learn to be a fat american living in the hellhole which we deserve.

because make no mistake, our behavior dictates that we do indeed deserve exactly what we get.

trick or treat.

28 October 2008

have a take, don't suck...

on the jim rome radio show, there is but one rule of the jungle...have a take, don't suck. i often think this mandate should be applied to basically all forms of communication. if one is talking to another on the phone, they ought be something. come correct, be original. have a take, don't suck. if one decides to waste time and watch television, don't watch some cheese ball fake shit like the big bang theory, watch something that has an idea, watch entourage, something that has a take and doesn't suck. and for god's sake and mine as well, if one is going to attempt to make some kind of piece of cinema(and i use that term loosely) then by all means, please follow the ultimate rule of the jungle. have a take, don't suck.

with his latest effort, w., oliver stone has failed miserably on both accounts. often hailed as some sort of provacateur, stone really bitched out on this one. there is no sense of detail, no underlying nuance that gave any sort of credibility to the freshman year psych/dr. phil daddy issues that stone uses to explain away the philosophical/mental defects that played into possibly the worst eight year presidency in the history of our nation. instead stone goes for a sugar ray greatest hits album type of feel, going over the "gems" of the slim bush timeline as if they aren't already played again and again on the radio "every morning" (hell yeah...a sugar ray joke!) mark mcgrath for president!

but really, oliver stone sucks now. whatever flare he had in the past is gone now. when he took all the bareknuckle journalistic investigation of barbara walters onto the set, he broke the law of the jungle. he made a movie about george w. bush, somebody everybody has a take on, and didn't even have a take. he made a shitty reenactment for the not so substantial a&e biography of bush II. and for that...

he sucks.

next caller.

18 October 2008

a moment of zen

for my boy justin, who has been in the mood to watch westerns lately...

a scene from the best, howard hawks lovely little film rio bravo.

16 October 2008

creatures of habitat

in last week's issue of indy.com or intake or whatever it is being called this month, the cover begged a rather interesting question. is indianapolis cool proof? naturally, as is normal for the same publishers of the star, a lack of journalistic integrity led not to an unearthing of answers, or an honest look at this question, but to merely a hipster friendly list of goods and services provided by towns that the rag deems as "cooler" than ours(what can we expect from a shit mag that employs joe shearer as a film reviwer) but, while the story inside proved to be bunk, the question on the cover was indeed a valid one and one that we here at the beer cannes have been mulling over for the last week, unable to find an angle from which to approach even the smallest beginnings of an answer.

and then this week's edition of the rival paper nuvo dropped into my lap the origins of a thesis on this particular quandry.

on its cover and within its pages, the issue presented the latest local "it" band of the moment margot and the nuclear so and so's on the verge of the release of its major label debut. to my suprise the story related seemed to offer a fairly interesting take on the question posed a week earlier.

the story relates the struggle between the band and their new benefactors at sony in coming to terms with a set list that is acceptable to both sides. margot wanted to put out one version, sony their own version. incredibly a compromise was reached and both sides got to release their own versions on specific formats(vinyl/cd/itunes)

and while this is a lovely little story of corporate compromise and all, it also seems to me a symptom of the greater problem of indianapolis' alledged "cool proof" ness in that when some entity,in this case margot,around these parts attains a certain level of cool, they automatically get thrust into this strange vortex where they begin to believe that they are much much cooler than they actually are.

i mean, who the fuck do margot and the nuclear so and so's think they are?

while they are so busy whining about how their songs need to go in this very particular order, there are literally a thousand bands around here that would kill to be in their position. good bands like red light driver and small arms fire would love to be reaping the promotional and touring benefits that come with releasing a major label album. yet all margot can do is whine and bitch about their "artistic integrity."

it makes me think about one of my favorite bands, van halen. i mean, can you picture eddie and david lee roth sitting around all mopey, wanting to release a different version of their first album because they wanted jamie's crying to come before running with the devil chronologically. no, they were just some future rock gods from pennsylvania that were ecstatic to be in a position to have their music heard beyond the region in which they lived. they got big heads much later, you know, after they had actually done something relevant.

margot pulls diva shit now, with marginal talent and an even smaller fan base because their songs are not memorable(unlike jamie's crying) so they try to pedestal themselves as true "artistes"

and that in a nutshell is something that is fundamentally flawed in this city. it's not that we are cool proof...it's that we are cool allergic. we get a little cool in our system and we can't handle it and we puff up like the mumps and blow things completely out of proportion.

when something becomes a big fish in our rather small pond, it goes straight to their head and they almost instantly become pretentious as all hell. like margot.

seriously, artists: just keep your nose to the grind and let your work speak for itself. if your shit is any good it won't matter what order it is placed in. it won't matter if some are b-sides and some are a's. if margot's songs are any good they will get out there. if the work on the album is any good, it will show through, no matter which version it is. just shut the hell up, and i might be able to take you seriously.

but as we here at the beer cannes are big big fans of humility, we can not in good faith recommend this trite bullshit. if you absolutely must drop coin on an album in the near future, buy the album by a tight little scottish outfit known as glasvegas. besides the fact that the singer croons like the new billy bragg, they strike me as the type of dudes who wouldn't bitch at their record label over whether geraldine comes before daddy's gone on the track listing because they are thankful for the oppurtunity just to get out of the hell hole that is glasgow, scotland. (or buy the red light driver album on itunes)shameless plug!

glasvegas-daddy's gone

glasvegas-geraldine(not the official video...but better)

red light driver

13 October 2008

nothing that you didn't think about sex in the second grade...a question i have to ask

can somebody, anybody explain woody allen to me?

because personally, i don't see the appeal.

i've cycled through the majority of his exercises in genre, be it his neurotic rom-com's(annie hall) his murder capers(match point, manhattan murder mystery), his old man fetish films(the jazz cycle-sweet and lowdown,deconstructing harry) his phony fake gene kelly, jaques demy ode(everyone says i love you) and even half of interiors(his "bergman" series) and all i see is a mere stylist, i.e. not an auteur on the sarris scale, working his neurotic way through the popular genres of his probably disheveled youth. he adds these overly-idiosyncratic touches and a grab bag of borrowed and already tired tricks from sixties european art films and mangles them into the pre-existing codes of traditional genre in a way that isn't really interesting at all.

last night i troubled myself to watch possibly his most uninspired and abominable take on the bawdy comedy when i watched the sickening everything you always wanted to know about sex but were afraid to ask. seriously, did he write that piece of sophmoric trash when he was eight after his first glimpse of a playboy magazine. no, probably not as that would be far too freudian and therefore interesting on some level, as opposed to this film which is not interesting on any level.

if one were able to get over his appaling godard rip-off when allen himself breaks the fourth wall with his most unsophisticated impersonation of groucho marx musings(a privledge only granted to characters played by the egomaniac himself) then i imagine one would surely be offput by the locker room humor of a giant, blob-like breast and the terrible one liners that accompany its arrival. but, however, if one is to mercifully look past this and press on, then surely they cannot condone the vast uninclusiveness as almost every fetish is welcome just so long as it is heterosexual. the most unappealing scene being that when woody allen playing a neurotic sperm makes the most detestable face at the thought that he could be discharged in a homosexual encounter. apperantly the 70's were a time of thoughtless bigotry, either that or in woody's world it's okay to date your stepchildren, so long as it isn't a same sex courtship.

hmm...inbreeders or homosexuals? not so tough a question...i will take homosexuals every day.
they are more fun...and generally have better/all of their teeth.

and besides all that liberal-agenda bullshit that i mention above...it's just not funny. not funny at all.

so seriously, why is this ass hat revered as a cinematic god of sorts?

on a happier note: it's my jam(s) of the week(both new school and old)

new(ish) school...with all apologies to vanessa hudgens whose song i'm amazed would be here if it had an official video(damn disney!)

old school

11 October 2008

we're caught in a trap, i can't walk out

this horribly embarassing gap in publishing owes itself to the fact that the publisher in question has momentarily lost his mind. i am not sure where or when or how exactly this occurred, but i know that it has, indeed, occurred and i feel that before a solution can be engineered, we must first identify and diagnose the problem.

and what exactly is the problem, one might ask. and with the way my mind is working right at the moment, i would have to answer that the answer to that question is quite tricky. but, as i am trying now to focus this free range mind of mine right now, i will put it as simply as i can.

lately, i haven't been able to clearly, coherently judge films.

which is actually a problem when my small little sliver of cyberspace is devoted primarily to the art in question. it seems to me that, as of late, i am unable to even come up with a positive or negative opinion on the films that aren't blatently one way or the other. what i mean by this is that, unless a film has been either spectacular(rare) or spectacularly bad(sometimes), i can't seem to pull any sort of focused analasys from them that would color my opinion one way or the other. everything seems so caught in the middle, whether the work in question can be deemed to be mediocre or not.

a case study of my recent viewing activities will hopefully shed some light upon this problem, so that we may press forward and attempt to remedy this overarching case of the "blah's."

at this point, i wish everything were as easy to evaluate as the film 27 dresses. this is a film so mired in cliche, so caught up in the unexamined tropes of the most banal aspects of the genre of romantic comedy, that even actors the quality of the otherwise lovely judy greer seem to realize that they are floating in the middle of a shit andwich that only serves to attempt to enhance the box office appeal of the utterly awful and unlikable bitch princess katherine heigl. she sniffs my nuts. fucking terrible, but sadly enough the only slam dunk review that the week handed me.

beyond that garbage, everything else handed me a big bag of mixed emotions, or perhaps just thoughts that conflicted with knee jerk emotions, which in the end is what this is really all about anyway.

which brings me to the centerpieces of our quandry: the emotionally sublime, yet intelectually upsetting nick and norah's infinite playlist and the feeling deprived, thought provoking joe swanberg "mumblecore nadir" hannah takes the stairs.

nick and norah pasted a goofy, high school crush grim on my face from moment one and pretty much kept it there during its entire duration. i thoroughly enjoyed sitting through this film, but unfortunately when it was over, the details were almost completely forgotten like a hazy recollection of a great time spent drinking one's mind away. and then the old intellect kicked in, and i started chipping away at its lovely veneer with the type of philosophical gripes that often take over post viewing.

i complain, because it is another in a long line of films that portray the urban experience of youth in new york city as if it were the only urban atmosphere where youth can have a formative experience. just once i would like to see a film about young urban nightlife in a city more like the one i inhabit. not the "infinite" possibility of a vast metropolis. i bitch because of the relative objectification of michael cera's previous romance with tris and how it makes me feel that he is somehow more vapid than his sensitive demeanor would indicate. and oddly that makes me happy as i believe that that somehow vindicates my stereotypical belief that most indie rock dudes are like that and not like the sensitive, artistic types that they act like.

and all this leaves me questioning whether i should truly be recommending this film to people or not. i mean, i did have a good time...but it left me with a bad taste in my mouth. what to make of this film?

and then there was hannah and her stairs. this movie elicited approximately the same response as 27 dresses as while i was watching it, i was convinced that i was watching a complete turd, with a heroine as unappealing as bitch katerine herself. i found myself counting down the seconds during the awkward interactions between greta gurwig and andrew bujalski, who was terrible in reprising his sad sack role from his own deft, touching film funny ha ha,(he should stick to directing) waiting for either the end, or the infinitely cool mark duplass to come back, or fore more gratuitous nudity. i just wanted this 85 minutes to end. and it did, thankfully.

but then i started thinking. and i really dug the fact that the entire film, outside of a few exterior shots of hannah waiting for public transportation, was shot in what seemed to be rented apartment spaces. and when i thought about it i realized that this film probably cost about two bucks to make and i really started to respect that they got all that mileage out of two bucks. then i started to be impressed with the spontinaeity of the ramdom acts of nothingness that occur in this film and how they never tried to put a humorous spin on them a la seinfeld, but merely chose to let them represent themselves of acts inspired by the often times monotonous and boring existence of the every man. and a funny thing happened. i actually started to enjoy this film in hindsight.

and that got me all fucked up.

i mean, seriously, how am i supposed to rate these films on netflix?

that is what it all boils down to. it comes down to questions. what is a film's purpose? is it meant to intellectualy stimulate, or is it merely meant as a momentary diversion? is it brain candy, or food for the soul? personally, right now i don't know and i don't really care as either way, i am no closer to sipping mai-tais on the beach with my girl ashley tisdale.

but right now i am okay admitting that i have no idea, so i think i will rate them both as a three star rating on the old netflix. because i guess i liked them both, only at different times during the process and in different ways.

i wish i could find the inverse of 27 dresses...a slam dunk masterpiece.

that would make this all so much easier.


03 October 2008

the top five things i'm looking forward to

i know, i know. i haven't been keeping up lately. and while my audience might be compelled to call me lazy, i would first like to plead my case before judgement is passed.

i was originally going to do this week's version of the tuesday tops about my vast collection of film literature, and i even wrote a draft to that effect. but sometime before i hit the publish button, i changed my mind and decided because of it's length to leave it for a slower week down the road. i came across information that let me know that this was gonna be a big week for new releases(thanks john peddie) and i decided that i may want to save this weeks list for the purpose of running down the newest cinematic offerings to this city. this week offers numerous choices for one's viewing enjoyment. this weekend is pretty huge.

so with that in mind here is this week's top 5 things to do with your weekend...

1. nick and norah's infinite playlist looks awesome. i mean, i like cool music. i like cute girls. and i freaking love michael cera. (especially when he gets the girl) but i think what i am most looking forward to is the (hopefully) triumphant return of director peter sollett whose wonderfully charming film raising victor vargas was among my favorite films released to castleton arts during my tenure there. i expect something touchingly, sweetly humanistic, and i doubt i will be disappointed.

2. blindness, the new film from fernando merelies, is well worth a watch. thanks to heather for allowing me to take an early sneak peek. mark ruffalo is great as always in a film that goes a long way to destroy nick and norah's good feeling towards humanity. this film doesn't have a ton of faith in people, which is easy to understand yet still a turn off, but it's wonderfully gritty style carries it into that rarefied air of something that becomes both ugly and beautiful simultaneously. an infinitely interesting work that probably didn't deserve the shelling it recieved as the opening night selection at this year's cannes film festival. plus gael garcia bernal sings the most hillariously placed song for a rare moment of levity.

3. after sollett makes you think people are wonderful, and after merelies makes you think they are awful, bill maher and larry charles film religulous will do its best to make you think that people are just plain stupid. borat with bill maher on the subject of god, i'm there.

after seeing all three one will probably have a pretty good overview of all that humanity has to offer. it's glorious and heartbreaking and occasionally leads one to believe that we are spiraling toward a large scale disaster.

4. and that disaster is taking place via the chicago cubs this weekend. it's sad, but i really am looking forward to another offseason of dissapointment for cub's fans, especially the one's who have insisted all summer that this is "their year." it isn't. and it won't be next year, or the year after that, or the year after that or any year in the entire future history of years to come.

they are the cubs. they lose. get used to it and become a happier person.

i have.

29 September 2008

monday's piece of advice

this week, we here at the b.c. strongly endorse getting together with some old friends. it's a good time of year to do that sort of thing. tonight i will be engaging in a battle of the gambling arts with this old married guy and this shady character, both of whom i haven't seen in a while. and that will be awesome.

it reminds me that sometime in the near future i need to sit down and have a meal with this dude.

make this week like a high school reunion for your life.

28 September 2008

this is good

oh yeah, and don't roll the new spike joint miracle at st. anna until he adds a white soldier to his quartet of heroes.

25 September 2008

looking forward to seeing the (w)hole of asia

i mean, c'mon, it's a catherine breillat film after all. which means you will see more lips and assholes and wieners than at a hot dog factory. and instead of all this amounting to eroticism, the last mistress will most likely engage your brain quite a bit more than it will your libido. which is good for the facet of my personality that zach proctor refers to as "femnazi."

with that said, i will most definitely be checking out the last mistress when it plays landmark this week because frankly, breillat has never failed to entertain me despite the often flawed philosophical/politcal reasonings behind her exploration of sexuality on film.

we're rolling this way this week.

23 September 2008

rick dees circa 1989... you know... before montell jordan saved the world

this weeks edition of the tuesday tops starts like this...

depending upon your amount of social life, you may have recently come across the story about one of the homely white guys from the much underappreciated, early nineties pop sensation color me badd being arrested for creating what can best be called a public disturbance.(he hit his lady in public...not cool)

now if you are anything like me, you probably immediately asked yourself the questions you normally go through internaly when faced with a wonderous tidbit such as this, "do i care?" or my new personal favorite, "is this news?" and your immediate response was probably much as mine was, a resounding "no, not really." and you forgot about it and went about your day.

and that is actually kinda sad because i used to love the song i wanna sex you up as well as the follow up jam i adore(mi amore) but that sadness nowhere near compares to the amount of sadness that comes with the fact that when i wrote the above sentence i felt compelled to use the phrase "used to."

"well..." you ask, "why didn't you just say that you loved it?"

believe me... it's not because i don't love those songs. and it's not because i feel ashamed to admit it, because clearly i don't. i got over the fear of the cool music police along time ago and just started going with my gut. and my gut tells me that color me badd are good.

so why did i state that i used to love their songs?

color me badd came into existence in this odd nether world that has been nearly completely abandoned by today's retro radio. they came to the fore in a time that is almost looked upon as a musical wasteland, nestled somewhere between the eighties stardom troiga of madonna, prince, and michael and the grunge kids that killed the dance in rainy, crap music town seattle before montell jordan sprang up to save the world again for dancers by showing how we do it. this entire era of pop hits has been systematically swept under the rug by a crap system of radio formatting that over romaticizes crap new wave vomit like the human league while eshewing totally the pre grunge era.(and sadly the era that shaped my pre teen mind) seriously the only things you hear from that era are easy rock songs like bruce hornsby and walking in memphis, already established(fading)artists rare offbeat hits (river of dreams, call me al) and the awesome country songs like randy travis, alabama, and i got friends in low places.

every form of non danceable music has done a great job of never lettting the era completely slip into obscurity. other than the occasional bone thrown our way in the form of bobby brown's exquisite every little step, dance music fans from this era can't find any trace of it on the radio. and sadly i played my glen medieros tape until it popped so i can't roll with that either. i mean what zpl, you can rock rhythm is a dancer, but you can't hit me with salt and pepa's none of your business?

that's sad...
or at least it was until i decided to use the tuesday tops as a forum to try and bring that era back.

without further ado...the top 5 hits from when i was ten that need to be brought back

1. this is the coolest song ever

2. a novelty if ever there was one...with prophetic words form my girl downtown julie brown

3. as in, timbuk 3. a jam that in a fair world i would hear everyday. also featured prominently in one of my favorie episodes of head of the class in a video generated on computer by dennis blunden and arvid engin.

4. the aforementioned mr. medeiros

5. another all time fave

where for art thou rick dees...we need some friday night videos. stat.

22 September 2008

beer cannes selects...

this week we here at the beer cannes advocate:

choosing life
choosing a job
being nice to your neighbor and the person on the other end of the drive thru speaker
taking a little time for yourself
blasting lil wayne and summer breeze
not speeding because people in hurry are annoying
only being condescending to your friends and even then not really meaning it
did i say get a job...well then ask for a raise
you never know...it might work
always taking the oppurtunity to hold a baby(squishy)
never drafting a running back in the first round of fantasy football
voting for anyone or anything
leaving, if pacers enter the club where you are
watching trainspotting one more time...for the good old days gone by
watching a woman is a woman for the same reason
watching your mouth in front of kids
choosing a favorite huxtable offspring
taking the time to ask a legitimate "get to know you" question
listening for the answer
kissing somebody that's pretty
watching the umbrellas of cherbourg because it's pretty
not shopping at wal mart
smoking in a non-smoking bar
holding the door open for an old person in a brown sweater
always wearing tennis shoes...you never know when you may have to run
watching cartoons in imax
eating at locally owned resturaunts
going to bed early
and waking up earlier
being funnier
being better

18 September 2008

looking forward to ghosts and kisses at midnight

i am a sucker for black and white. and i don't care if something appears derivitave of jarmusch and before sunrise, as i can think of far worse things to emmulate. so with this in mind i will be checking out the film in search of a midnight kiss this weekend. what can i say, when they put out a preview like this i am almost sure to watch.

i will also try to check out the new ricky gervais film as i think that guy is pure gold and hearing his laugh alone is worth the price of admission. plus i saw him on regis and he described the film as "capraesque" and i am in the mood for something good natured, and tactful at the tail end of this cynical summer.

and the lack of tact will probably be what keeps me from watching lakeview terrace despite the fact that it is directed by one of my more beloved misanthropic and local favorite director neil labute. well, a lack of niceties, and an utter desire to avoid another overblown show from samuel l., of course.

whatever you watch, just go watch. it's important.

17 September 2008

putting down the haterade

it seems as if lately all i have been doing in the blogosphere is spitting awful bile into the face of some of the more vastly overrated portions of popular culture. batman, the coen brothers, coldplay and the colts have all felt recent dossages of my wrath, and even though i'm in a much softer, cuddlier mood today, i still must say that they all still deserve the verbal beatdowns that they have each recieved.

but today, with the onset of cooler weather and the first inklings of autumnal winds, i want to kind of turn over a new leaf, so to speak. for a short time i will attempt to unveil a kinder, gentler troy. one whose celebratory mood will hopefully permeate the atmosphere and hopefully cause my readers to turn a nicer glance on those things that they may normally overlook. after reading ryan's most recent blog in which he espouses the virtues of the hugely under rated and often completely under the radar nicky katt, i decided that i should be doing something differently. instead of spewing hate toward the overhyped, i want to shine the spotlight of my love down on some people and things that normally do not seem to get the credit which they so richly deserve.

with this in mind, i am again going to jump headlong into another(belated) version of the tuesday tops...

and present the top 5 most underrated examples of genius.

1. kevin nealon doesn't get half of the credit he deserves for being not only a great comedian, but also a really skilled actor. often labeled a poor man's chevy chase, i find it inconcievable that this guy gets no love after doing what i consider to be the best stint of anyone who has ever read the news on weekend update. his glib timing is far superior than chase's and his occasional forrays into sarcasm never smack one in the face as so many "drippers" of the craft often do. he is steady, and easy going, often times not even trying to appear funny, but letting the audience figure it out for themselves. check out his pseudo straight man turn in happy gilmore or his acceptance in being the constant butt of jokes in the show weeds and just bask in the soft glow of his hysterical, yet good natured comedy. in a chris rock comedy world where performers feel the need to hit the audience over the head with punch lines, nealon is a true master of subtlety. and he deserves more respect.

2. billy ocean is the only black singer in history to convince all the eighties, wall street coke monkeys that he was white, therefore allowing them to buy his albums in good consience. i used to get him and rick astley confused all the time when i was a kid, which is not a bad thing as rick rules too. but nobody beats billy. the songs loverboy and get out of my dreams are undeniable classics that seem to be forgotten by nostalgia buffs who fawn all over huey fucking lewis. billy ocean is badass, and he can get into my car anytime he wants.

3. paul thomas anderson gets credit, but it is not nearly as much as he deserves. sometimes it seems as if he is perpetually treated as the wunderkind that made boogie nights and that people just think the brilliance of his films arise out of "just another day at the office." as if it were that easy. this is because he often makes it look that easy. but it isn't, otherwise i wouldn't eagerly anticipate and await the next p.t. anderson offering. seriously...just the fact alone that there will be blood did not carry away the oscar proves how underappreciated this guy truly is. the coen brothers should make the first good move in their careers and give it back to him, where it rightfully belongs. he freaking deserves it.

4. dennis bingham is a great, great film professor who has the innate ability to discuss old hollywood films in a way that makes them pop with more relevance today than they had when they were released originally. his absolute love and adoration seeps into each of his lectures, but in a way that still allows him to cast a sharp critical eye towards them. i occasionally go back to the mecca of nu103 so that i can sit in on his lectures and feel refreshed and renewed in my dealings with the cinema. as a matter of fact, i probably need to get back soon as i feel it slipping away again. i highly recommend that everyone do the same. seriously just slip in the back and listen to him for awhile, he won't mind as long as a genuine interest is displayed. and if he asks, tell him that troy sent you to see what all the buzz is about. a true icon, and a completely undervalued educational resource in our city.

5. boz scaggs used to get no love from me in my teenage years because his name reminded me of the vile purveyor of ass-jazz named dave koz. but then i actually listened to what boz was offering me. and it was awesome.

6. evelyn "champagne" king has the most perfect nickname ever as her songs make me feel bubbly drunk like the carbonated concoction for which she is cited. she is by far the greatest of all the disco divas, turning at least 45 revolutions per minute worth of circles around bitches like the vile donna summer. enjoy.

and lastly i want to give a shout out to cover bands. cover acts get no freaking respect as they are relegated to the wedding/dinner party circuit even though if we are honest with ourselves we would admit that we would rather hear a cover of something like the stones or son of a preacher man than some shitty local band's crappy songs that contain no hook whatsoever. i was in columbus ohio last week basking in the warm glow of another ohio state beatdown when i heard this awesome band called the conspiracy band whose arsenal included songs as diverse as the aforementioned preacher man and a truly rocking cover of beyonce's otherwise putrid crazy in love. if you are ever in c-bus, perhaps visiting the wexner center, i highly recommend seeing if these guys are playing near you. check them out and imagine our city being overrun by good cover bands like this as opposed to all the "original" shitty local acts that we have. because singing along to a good earth wind and fire cover makes for a better time anyways, if not a better world.

a better world indeed.

16 September 2008

monday suggestions(belated)

this week beer cannes reccomends weeds.

and my readers say...no shit?..not you, bro...

and then i say that i mean the show, the show weeds.

get your mind out of the gutter.
even though the colts defense(not to mention special teams) enjoys company.

seriously colts...stop the run...and i will stop saying "you suck"

until then...watch weeds...it will cheer you up.

11 September 2008

looking forward to some haagen dazs

i don't want any of that bullshit ice cream...i want haagen dazs.

baghead was really fucking good.

this week not so much. i am probably in the minority here, but i hate the coen brothers. they are just kinda boring to me and frankly i have never been able to understand why they engender so much love from people. this new one looks like "no country for intolerable cruelty"... unfortunately the intolerable cruelty is probably directed toward the audience(most likely in the form of brad pitt's hammy as all hell performance) with malkovitch along for the ride and the always overwrought dialouge of the coen brothers, you can rest assured that this one will be a horriffic pork festival. i don't understand how these dudes continually get away with doing this terrible mix of thirties slapstick mixed with fifties gaeity with a crap dash of horse poo surrealism(generally when they work themselves into a corner) and critics still kiss their ass and can't manage to see through this bullshit for what it really is...sampling. seriously the critics that love this shit probably hate the newest kid rock song all summer long even though it does the same exact thing in its invention of a redneck rap over the piano of werewolves of london and the guitar of sweet home alabama. but then again that's the supreme hypocracy inherent in today's criticism. it's okay to steal so long as the theft occurs from approved areas. either way it's derivitave. and since i really only have time for one set of filmmaking brothers at a time (duplass) i will have to say that i like the kid rock song way better than any coen brothers movie i have ever watched. and that is sad as i already understand its novelty status.

fuck the coens. hacks.

seriously...burn before watching

and then watch this(something really awesome)

and if you thought that was as awesome as i do...
check this out

good times.
now go have a nice weekend. cheers.

10 September 2008

quality, it's all about the logo...logo

i know i'm slipping. this is supposed to be the tuesday top five(or as i am now calling it the tuesday tops), not the wednesday or thursday versions that i have been rolling out lately. but in my defense, i haven't really been partaking in the cinematic arts(or any arts for that matter) so i haven't necessarily felt that i have anything relevant to say concerning them.

frankly, my brain has been turned off since i got back from vacation. and then football came along and stole my attention. but i didn't want to drop another blog about sports so soon as i dont want to turn into a sports blog.

i was really strugling to find an interesting list hidden in the recesses of my largely empty brain so i just kind of let yesterday roll by me and failed to post the tuesday tops. i was pretty sure that i was gonna skip it all together until i was eating an early lunch today and it hit me when i opened up a bag of delectable potato chips.

now i'm not a foodie and even if i was i would leave that sort of thing to a good food reviewer like john peddie. no actually this isn't really about food at all. what hit me when i opened the chips was the idea that i really liked the pre eating joy that i experienced because i knew that i was in for a tasty treat. i knew this because the product came from a company that i truly trust to always deliver the goods. and it hit me...

the top 5 brands that beer cannes trust...(quality)

1. cape cod potato chips make my mouth water just thinking about their crunchy, kettle cooked goodness. i used to be all about the jalapeno and aged cheddar, but lately i have been feeling the robust russet. they are the only company whose non-flavored chips i will even deign to eat and they do wonderful things with flavors like not letting them completely overwhelm the natural potato flavor of the crispy nugget of taste gold.

2. jack links beef jerky makes my mouth water just thinking about its chewy, beefy goodness. i used to be all about the sweet and spicy, but lately i have been feeling the black pepper. they are the only company whose beef jerky will enter my mouth and they do wonderful things with flavors like not letting them overpower the natural taste dried of lean beef. as a former, decade long vegetarian, i am sometimes amazed at how much i love this stuff.

i know at this point readers are asking themselves if i really said this wasn't about food, but i had to mention both of those products as they generally make up my lunch at work and i love them.

3. the schick quatro like all razors is a little pricey, but completely worth it. i shave like once a week tops, but i find that every time i do it with this razor it is smoother than it was when i was twelve. i used to rock the mach 3, but once i went quatro, i chose a path that will never take me down the rough patchy trail of gillette again.

4. nascar and the nfl always bring the goods and give me something to idle away time with on a sunday afternoon. i find it funny that i can barely sit through a film over two hours in length, but that i will routinely be perfectly content to give upwards of four hours of valuable weekend time to the above brands. but unlike films, these two always always always deliver the goods. even a bad game or a bad race is still a heck of a lot of fun to me. plus its sunday, what the hell else are you gonna do.

5. k swiss tennis shoes are the bomb. when l.a. gear lit their last heel light, i became a k swiss guy. i love the all white look cause even when they are a little dirty they still feel so fresh and so clean. and the crest is dope. now if they could just get those lights into the heel.

6. the national baseball hall of fame and the town of cooperstown new york is the most awesome place that i have ever been to period. and i don't even like baseball that much. but since baseball has done a better job than almost anything else in human history of archiving its history, the place becomes magical. it transported me back to being ten years old, when i really liked baseball, and i even almost got a little emotional at the plaques of ryne sandberg and kirby puckett as i was smiling so big. i truly encourage everyone in the world to make the pilgrimage and get in touch with a little bit of the american mythology that is baseball.

quality abounds at the tuesday tops.

08 September 2008

recommendations revise into recaps(so and so sucks!)

it's monday and supposedly time for another film recommendation from the good folks here at beer cannes. but since nobody seems to actually go out and try to digest get these inspired nuggets i put forth, and since i am a lifelong obsessive over the national football league, i am going to switch gears for a minute and use my normal monday column to recap what it is that we have seen over the weekend on the gridiron.

week one always gets me a little fired up, and yesterday was no exception. there were very few players and coaches who managed to escape the label of "sucks," as i was in a particularly fired up mood over the half assed effort that i saw displayed by a few of the "players" that i saw play.

my very, very, very long list includes but is not exclusive to:

rams coach scott linehan sucks! and for that matter mark bulger sucks! as i cannot imagine a situation in which a team finds itself down by a ton of points and still only manages to target one of the best, most consistently productive recievers in league history(tory holt) only once for nine yards. but then again you were too busy being down by thirty and still handing the ball off to steven jackson so he could get tackled behind the line of scrimmage again and again. but then again we all knew that the rams suck!

randy moss sucks! more as a person than as a player. how would you know if bernard pollard's hit was "dirty" or not, as i recall you were too busy putting the ball on the carpet to have a good view of matt light pushing pollard into your beloved quarterback. do us all a favor and just start phoning it in like you did when you were in oakland. unless of course you need to roll up a parking patrol officer's knee with your car(a la tom brady)like you did when you were a viking. just shut the fuck up you ignorant piece of trailer trash and play football.

peyton manning sucks! there i said it. since when did this dude become jeff garcia dinking and dunking with a complete inability to throw the ball accurately over ten yards. that mutherfucker was shit yesterday and he was constantly leaving my man reggie wayne out to dry over the middle. he was lucky that reggie didn't get hurt...because that would have derailed this season in a real quick hurry. step your game up or sit on the bench, cause last night he hurt the colts more than he helped.

and since we are on the colts...marvin harrison and anthony gonzalez suck! drops and fumbles...or is that fumbles and drops...hell i don't know, both names probably fit both guys. remember the good old days when marvin used to just fall down when he caught a ball over the middle instead of getting stripped while trying to make a play. marvin, you are not t.o. or andre johnson, or any other 6'5" 225 lb behoemeth. you are a little dude who needs to play as soft as all the rest of the colts not named wayne or sanders so that we can keep the chains moving in our new 3 yards at a time offense. i mean it's not like you were playing the colts defense or anything.

and speaking of the colts defense(not that there is much defense to speak of) keyunta dawson and ed johnson ssssuuuuuccccckkkkk!!!!!!!! matt forte ren it straight through those non existent defensive tackles only to find huge holes because freddy keiaho sucks! too. mind your gap and stop giving up the big play you dipshit.

saints wide reciever marques colston sucks! he plays so soft(coming out because of a thumb booboo) that i am suprised he doesn't wear the blue and white.

there are a ton more that i just don't have the energy to mention now(derek anderson)

on the college side of things i was really pulling for san diego state to beat notre dame because, you guessed it, notre dame and especially charlie weis suck! fat bitch. i was also pulling for emily's alma matter ohio university to knock off the sweater vest...but i will leave this one to my alpha dog lendale white...

hell yeah...they suck! more than the two of my readers who voted that they would rather hang out with screech than urkel. screech sucks!

urkel rules...a lot like these dudes:

former indiana university and current new orleans saints cornerback tracy porter who had a huge first game in the nfl completely locking down joey galloway and providing nice physical run support. like marlin jackson(who also doesn't suck)

drew brees was huge too. unlike peyton, when he dumped it down to his running back, he found reggie bush with enough space to pop some big ones and reggie bush did exactly that. i haven't been so impressed with that guy since he was on the usc payroll.(or at least since he tagged the bears for that one in the nfc championship a few years back) i wish he would have flipped into the endzone.

i want to see brandon jacobs and marion barber start at opposite ends of the field and run full steam until they collide at the fifty yard line. thos guys are like the running of the bulls and the force of that big bang might start a whole new universe.

and did i mention how much i love reggie wayne...badass.

and finally in my recap, i feel i have to make an open plea to colts fans on this one.

please...show at least a modicum of class about the tom brady injury. i realise that class is hard concept for the obese, ignorant population of this city to grasp sometimes, especially considering that in the wake of the injury most colts fans were running around like we had been annointed super bowl champs before the bears came in and rolled us up in our new house. just imagine if the shoe was on the other foot...actually last night that might not have been half bad.

06 September 2008

top five things shane white doesn't care about

you asked for it...

1. personal hygeine...smell for yourself

2. books...can shane even read?

3. beers 4,5, and 6 of a six pack...because the first three get him ripped. lightweight.

4. anything cool...i mean you've seen his dvd collection right?

5. baghead...i don't know if he cares about this at all, but i wanted to mention it because it would have been the subject of my typical thursday "what i'm looking forward to post," but those jackasses who book films at landmark hate young people and only chose to schedule it twice a day because fifty five year old carmel bitches don't want to drag their bloated, browbeaten husbands to go see it.

and it depressed me so much that i just couldn't blog all week, until i listened to the wu-tang.

after laughter, comes tearz...

cinema is for the children

and as for monday's berr cannes selects...watch the duplass brothers awesome and hillarious puffy chair...especially after you go out and enjoy baghead as much as you will.

there that takes care of my weekly business in one nice concise package. i will be back at full force next week to hit you off with the raw.

beer cannes is for the children.

28 August 2008

looking forward to getting out of this place

cue that really awesome animals song right now.... as occasionally we gotta get out of this place. and this weekend we are doing that in upstate new york.

we encourage you to do the same. take a nice long weekend for yourself. after the olympics and right in the middle of our nation's dualing propaganda festivals, you deserve it. so relax.

if you happen to be sucked into all this "obama as savior" nonsense go watch hamlet 2 so you can learn the words to rock me sexy jesus...or is that big eared jesus?

and if you're waiting for next week's john mccain festival, well, frankly that's even more depressing, but since you're already in that mood...go watch isabelle coixet's new film elegy as it is practically guaranteed to make you even sadder.

if you're like me and see nothing but two politicians(and i use that word as an insult) duking it out for the ultimate prize in the padded resume contest, you probably already feel like this world is completely screwed and might as well just plop down the sawbuck and go to the megaplex and see disaster movie.

talk about depressing...where for art thou michael phelps?
america needs you back.

26 August 2008

the top five films to make out to...

as promised...the innaugural tuesday top five

a long, long time ago, before this formerly fair city of indianapolis became the crumbling empire that exists before one's eyes today, there stood a beacon of hope and a pillar for all things cinematic known as castleton arts. one day, while immersed in a conversation about hal hartley, because this was the special time and place where one could do as such, a "naturally charming," yet infinitely tactless projectionist extrordinaire named ian yee bounded over the top turnbuckle like a third party wwf participant and joined the fray with this soon to be timeless nugget of wisdom:

the amateur, which isn't even its actual title(its just amateur) the amateur is my makeout film...well that and 2001 because you make out during the boring parts.

and thus this list was born...a good place to start the newly implemented tuesday top 5, and hopefully hopefully an essay of such quality that it becomes a fitting tribute to the enigmatic, yet generous spirit that is ian yee. these are the top 5 makeout films of all time.

1. amateur-hal hartley
when you're right, you're right...and ian pretty much hit it over the fence with this pick. hal hartley is mad cool, kinda like assayas, but in this one he eschews his normal over the top level of detachedness for a more cool, attainable level and thus allows for a massively erotic amount of sexual radiation to come through. this film has got amnesiacs who used to direct porn, a starlet of such product, and an ex nun who wants to break into the field all being chased by organized crime. sexy and tense, it is a film that warrants a little french kiss release.

2. blow up-michaelangelo antonioni
i don't like the idea of trying to make out to 2001(or any kubrick for that matter) because i don't feel like science, specifically the cold, precise nature of it employed by kubrick, belongs anywhere near the bedroom. so i go a tad more humanistic and put on blow up. there are still a fair amount of "boring parts" to make out during, but with a more natural, green hued freshness that works itself up into an desire, almost a need, for passionate outburst.

plus i always talk about how i think this is like a zombie movie in reverse, as david hemmings spends the whole film completely removed from participation in the emotional side of human existence. he slides down a bustling, sixties carnaby street, occasionally stopping to fuck hot models in between adventures into the public sphere like when he enters the hedonistic, animalistic ritual of the yardbirds concert. and he moves through completely unscathed, until he becomes interested and engaged and allows himself to transcend to the emotional level beyond merely fucking and in to lovemaking. and then he becomes one of us, his humanity doing him in after all. tell this to a smart girl...it's like the key to the city of smooch-ville.

and then tell them you copped my idea...you plaigaristic fuck :)

3. sense and sensibility-ang lee
anything with those sort of merchant-ivory, dignified repressed passions, is good. and since this isn't merchant-ivory and it's actually made by a good director, this one is even better. a film where the highest moment of romantic lust's release is when emma thompson tells hugh grant, "i very much esteem you." to which hugh stutters and stumbles his way back with,"i...very...much...........es..teem...you." practically makes you want to fuck right then and there because you're practically itching for something to happen and someone to just explode. plus the lush english countryside estates and kate winslet constantly pressed up in a corset give this film an air of freshness that belies the begining of any truly great romance.

4. beauty and the beast-jean cocteau
actually any version of this tale will do as it points out that you have looked in the mirror and seen your hairy disgusting ass and know that your rather lovely significant other will have to look past that to find a prince within. it sends subliminal messages that make her think you "get it." i chose this version because once in college i showed it to a cute girl who didn't even really like me very much and she ended up making out with me just as a sort of thanks for sharing with her this lovely celluloid experience.

5. any film that you yourself have made...
or anything that i have made for you...on second thought just go with the one i made, especially if you have a copy of le genou de b(the knee of the bee). its brilliant pastche of gorgeous romantic images and awesome, adoration inspiring music have all the qualities of a freshman year mixtape in that their sole purpose is the attempt to smatch a kiss...or was that to kiss a...nevermind.

6. any film by that fuck nut ken burns
not that i advocate watching them, but if one has to watch one of these windbaggy piles of poo, it better end with making out with a hot chick. and it follows the ian yee rule, in that there are usaually copious amounts of boring, terrible parts during which to make out. witness his latest, greatest travesty to the art of documentary...the democratic national convention film that he did for ted kennedy and all its un-objective glory whoring. i mean, leni riefenshtal was completely ostracized from society for making propaganda bullshit like this. i mean honestly, i hope ken burns remembers that when barack obama rides the ted kennedy, democratic sympathy train all the way to the white house and becomes just another stuffed suit in a long line of proved false prophets that he was a key cog in our nations machine like march towards the book of revelations. that, and that by doing so you commit an even greater sin and prove richard kelly right. you're a douche ken burns.

i gotta calm down...i'm gonna go try and make out.

25 August 2008

beer cannes selects #1: the adventures of sebastian cole

a short while ago, emily and i watched the film definitely maybe because she likes movies like that and because i am a sucker for ryan reynolds even though he makes movies that tend to suck. we both enjoyed it, as it is another fairly well done, amicable piece by the people at working title productions. a few days later we saw phil in the lobby of landmark and when he asked us about it, emily replied that she liked it, but that she liked it even more because one of the characters was named emily.

i started thinking about it and i started to agree with her on the notion that people tend to like films better based on characters sharing their name. perhaps it helps us relate better, who knows? it got me thinking about the various other troys i have encountered along my journey into cinema's vastness and how it doesn't seem that there are too many that i have seen or that are that memorable.

the only two i could come up with off the top of my head pretty much make up for opposite ends of the gamut from awesome to vile. when i say vile, i mean that ass troll elfin mutherfucker zac efron, who of course plays troy in the similarly ass troll high school musical films. that choice actually made me like that film less...why couldn't corbin blue be named troy? as sad as that would also be, at least that would have made it a little better.

but it still wouldn't come anywhere close to topping the greatest troy in the history of cinema. he lives in a supporting role, in a film that is not even named after him, but that still seemed to deserve some sort of love from the bc. and since i wanted to start this column with something out of left field, and since it is coming up on its ten year anniversary, and since everybody just loves vinnie chase these days, i feel like the time is right to present to you...

the adventures of sebastian cole-tod browning jr.

a minor coming of age story that is thankfully light on plot and very big on rich, well drawn, likeable characters. taking the time to occasionally linger in beautiful moments, this film isn't in a hurry to get anywhere or do anything as it manages to show the rarest of creatures in today's american cinema, nice people.
netflix it, or rent it, or find another way to get it...just get it.
and be wowed by the power of troy.

to serve you better

in my probably futile attempt to become appointment reading for those out in this here blogosphere, i have been tinkering with a few new ideas that will hopefully get me onto more of a schedule that will keep the beer cannes full of fresh material. in addition to my weekly thursday column that details what it is that we here advocate seeing during the weekend, i have ideas for two other columns that will hopefully become staples of both my writing and your reading diet.

the first new segment, which will appear later today, will be my monday pick of the week. each monday, we will profile an older, available to rent film that occasionally might be a little obscure, but that has nonetheless come to help shape the cinematic landscape of the beer cannes world.

the second new feature, which will publish tomorrow, will be the tuesday top 5, in which we here at the bc will riff on any old sort of pop culture list that we happen to be thinking of at the time. occasionally we will take suggestions from our readers that want to come to a better understanding of the beer cannes take on a certain aspect of pop culture, but for this week we will be publishing the top 5 films to make out to...so look for that tomorrow.

hopefully, these ideas will come to fruition and become great successes in the bc universe.
hopefully they will get me back on track writing wise and eliminate some of the annoying gaps in publishing.

21 August 2008

looking forward to reflection

honestly, this weeks releases look like poop. and sadly, that is okay with me as i'm still trying to catch up with last weeks haul of new releases and i am a little bit too preoccupied/infatuated with the new, breezy sounding pop gem from jesse mccartney to worry about it. i may check out the zombie festival at key cinemas...i may not. it really depends on how convincing mike scott is.

so without anything to sink my teeth into this week, i feel it might be a good time to go through some things i have been meaning to go through for a while.

we here at the bc, because of our proximity to film purgatory, feel that the film calendar really tends to begin about march as it takes the indy theaters about two months after new years to cycle through all of the "important" films that tend to drop late in the year to remain fresh in the mind of oscar voters. with these parameters set for a filmic cycle, august is roughly the halfway point of what i would call a year in cinema. with this in mind, and with nothing whetting my appetite for a theatrical visit, i thought it might be good to take a moment to reflect on the first half of the year and maybe kind of come to some sort of consensus as to the greatest shit we have seen thus far. after all we promise "the greatest shit in the world"(it's in the header) and by god we are gonna deliver.

plus we want to get it out before the good people over at my life in lists because we have a feeling that theirs may be similar and we don't ever want to be labeled as unoriginal.(not that ryan would be if our lists do end up to be remarkably similar...he's a pimp)

so without further ado. beer cannes selects 2008

1. in the city of sylvia-jose luis guerrin
in the recent edition of film comment this film was in the distributor wanted column which unfortunately means that it is currently without u.s. distribution. that is a tragedy as this film is beyond gorgeous and infinitely engaging. it's so good that i can't bear to cast a critical eye upon it and become reduced to hyperbolic blabberings whenever i am confronted with the mere idea of it. i was lucky enough to have caught it at the indianapolis international film festival, which, despite my slaggings, i am forever in debt to for this providing me with this little gem.

2. paranoid park-gus van sant
another year, another gus van sant film on my top ten. there is nobody in the world who does it more consistently great as this guy. and this one is among his best. another film that reduces me to flights of fancy such as this: netflix it right now and become caught up in its glowing flourescent rapture.

3. forgetting sarah marshall-nicholas stoller
i can't decide if this is the funniest great movie i have ever seen or if it is the greatest funny movie. but either way it is well worth multiple viewings as it holds up in a way that alot of apatow product does not. my only question for how i met your mother fans is, "does that make segal marshal marshal?" plus it has kunu and aldous snow! winner winner, chicken dinner.

4. still life-jia zhang-ke
i caught this one at the indianapolis arts center and found it to be jia's most mainstream and most comedic yet. a tad slow, but that is because it wants the viewer to feel the supreme beauty of urban decay and experience the slow death of a particular way of life. at times, it is as funny as sarah marshall, prompting similarly inane questions like "can any dude in china afford a shirt?" and "what the fuck is that spaceship doing here?" a think piece about awesomeness. netflix this one too.

5. snow angels-david gordon green
a shot of whiskey into the beer cannes system. this film is sad in a hard way. only the beauty of olivia thirlby keeps one at ease with the somber lives being led on the outskirts of rust belt decay. michael arangano freaking rules and this is by far the best david gordon green picture released into theatres around here this year.

6. dr. horrible's sing-a-long blog-joss whedon
i'm generally not a whedonite, but we here at the bc sincerely support anyone who says fuck the man and releases their work on the web.(during a strike no less) that is boss pimp. and nph and fillion blow it up like trained circus seals. it truly does rock your sorry ass.

7. boarding gate-olivier assayas
olivier assayas is just cooler than us, to the point where he can make corporate espionage the most appealing thing in the universe. his stylistic choices are unbelievably solid from the music to the clothes and beyond. his camera is ever moving like one's heartbeat, and although it's occasionally choppy, it never seems to lack coolness. plus asia argento's abs are off the hinges(better than kerri walsh even) this film would undoubtedly be sitting higher if i hadn't seen it on dvd which obscures for me its release date and i don't truly know that it was released theatrically within this calendar year.

8. step brothers-adam mckay
another year, another will ferrell film. he is almost as consistently good as gus van sant. shit, even semi pro wasn't as bad as you think it was. this movie rules because i can't believe the shit these two say to one another. and that comes from me, who recently called one of his best bros tyson gay.(sorry shane-o...but you know the bc loves you)

9. ????
this is probably getting into honorable mention territory, but for number nine i just cant decide between jon favreau's iron man and hou hsiao hsien's filght of the red balloon. after all they are so similar, i often wonder how one could even tell them apart.

i also liked the pineapple express, kung fu panda, what happens in vegas, and harold and kumar escape from guantanamo bay...which sadly kinda made me like president bush.

oh well i'm leavin'...another day another dollar...sleep tight bitches and have a good weekend.

20 August 2008

i hope i didn't just give away the ending

(ed. note that is the title of the best new radicals song...check it out)

many of the readers of this blog work at or exist on the periphery of movie theatres and therefore often recieve free admittance to features. such as occurs with a privledge like this, occasionally the delight of seeing films inside the confines of a theatre designed solely for the experience escapes said workforce and they begin to take for granted their access to theatrically screened movies. at times like this, we here at beer cannes like to find a way to bring them back to the realm of the uninitiated and perhaps allow them to remember momentarily what it is like for the unprivledged masses.(not that we really think they forgot)

going to the movies without the aid of the occasional free admittance that i am often afforded is freaking expensive. and by this i don't necessarily mean just in dollars.

we live in a time where the proliferation of a myriad medias has allowed for an almost infinite amount of options for entertaining use of our free time. it used to be that going to the movies was pretty much the bomb as there was a time when all they had to compete with was the fledgling programming of no more than three television networks and the outdated and outmoded offerings of narrative driven radio programming. in the face of this competition people would just about go see anything, often without knowing what it was beforehand.

but today there are many more options. films have to compete with the internet, video games, a million television stations, etc. people don't seem to deem it worth their time to get into something that could possibly have an unforseen outcome. in short people don't want to waste their time going to films that might suck because they know there are other options that could provide a similarly fulfilled sense of entertainment. they want the safety net of knowing approximately what they are getting into before they get into it.

and that jason maier is part of the reason that, in today's business model for film distribution, trailers that give away pretty much everything are a necessary evil. people simply want to use their preciously valuable free time in a way that is sure to satisfy them.

and unfortunately, the great masses don't consider the sometimes splendidly entertaining viewing of a truly horrible film as satisfying, much less as entertainment at all. cinema has become another commodity that is sold on its familiarity. the new batman is essentially nothing but a name brand like coke or mcdonald's in that it serves its purpose of filling us up in a way that is familliar to our senses because we have built a stockpile of past experience with the product. in this sense trailers are nothing more than the advertising for said products and therefore take on as their goal the building of a brand name or image. we then in turn go to see the new batman film and know what it is that we are getting into much in a similar way to that in which we order a coca cola and know with fairly accurate certainty beforehand how it will taste.

think about the average filmgoer(not one who like theater workers has a veritable buffet of oppurtunity) the average american will probably go to the theater no more than once a week. they will plop down ten bones during peak hours(twenty if on a date, more for kids) just to see the film. now when you factor in concessions or cocktails(thanks landmark) that price becomes somewhat astronomical to a non six figure salary, taking a large percentage of monies set aside for leisure activity. if such a large portion is being paid, one would imagine that the financier of said output would want to have an idea of what his investment will be like. and as you can tell by looking at the grosses lately, nobody is going to the films with trailers that don't promise a specific sort of experience. nobody goes to the european film with the trailer that begs the question, "what the fuck is going on?" because frankly, it is often too expensive, both in terms of time and money, to gamble on something that is vague and undefined.

now i love films and i suppose that because most of my readership works around them that they do as well. part of the allure is often the excitement that comes with not knowing exactly what one will get, and we often get angry when we see trailers that destroy that sense of wonderment. but we are a rare, special breed and most patrons of theaters are not like us. unfortunately, these people are the ones that ratchet up the profits putting films like batman over the trillion dollar mark while the european art film with the tricky plot languishes in obscurity. the studios, which are pretty smart, understand that they already have us, the cine-geeks, and therefore utilize their resources in cultivating another segment of audience, the audience it needs to thrive, the kind that needs to be told what they are about to see before they see it. and that is why trailers usually give away the ending.

nice question maier...i appreciate it.

i am billy walsh...

or wally balls or whatever alias one could attribute to the man. but that doesn't mean that i know a vince...or drama...or even a turtle. i see right through the loaded nature of this question, shane. and i understand how badly your desire to see yourself compared to eric from entourage, or sawyer from lost, or marshall form how i met your mother or macgyver or some shit would lead you to ask it of the beer cannes. but as you well know we here at the bc aren't really in the business of giving one shane m. white what is expected and especially not what is desired.

so with this in mind, i will almost send you the ultimate hipsteresque "fuck you" and say that i haven't really watched tv in the last couple years, at least not enough to have some idea of what show my friends are most like the cast of. no sadly, the most in-depth i have gotten into television programming lately is the beijing summer olympics, which is actually an interesting place to start.

i am michael phelps or kobe bryant...because i am the mutherfucking best...ever.

phil goul is shawn johnson because he is short, totally solid, and always tends to make me smile. phil is totally adoptable the same way in which an orphan shawn would be.

ryan micheel is bob costas...maybe he doesn't participate in the traditional sense, but his sharp, witty commentary always makes the proceedings better.

jason maier is nastia liukin because of the solid all around nature of their beings. he is maybe not as high flying as others but he does what he does with percision and grace and never looks like he breaks a sweat. a character of great tact.

michael maier is dara torres because frankly he is just a little too old to be hanging out with us, but he is alright(at best) so we let him hang.

jenny proctor is mary carillo in that while the olympics are going on, she seems to be travelling around doing her own thing. iconoclastic in a way. and an eater of scorpions.

zach proctor is bela karolyi. a big teddy bear that is a little bit of a blow hard and always feels someone, somewhere is being cheated and it makes him red in the face. plus he is humorous.

emily stage is usain bolt because she is always going a mile a minute.

and finally shane white is alicia sacramone because he had a golden oppurtunity to ask a genuinely interesting question(like jason maier) and he blew it. and that just makes him (tyson) gay.

but to answer your question about you, shane...you are like mona from who's the boss?
and i am the boss.