Posts in: March 28th, 2011

Mind-Blowing Joy

It’s hard to deny that, since I’ve relaunched the site, I’ve done little more than complain. Most of you should be used to that by now, but I told myself that I wanted to do more with this new site than merely vent my frustration about things that, in large part, make me quite angry at the time I’m ranting but evaporate quickly. For instance, I forgot I even wrote anything about Glee, because I stopped caring almost immediately after I hit the “Publish” button. (To that end, though, I do still think Murphy’s comments point in the direction of him being a terrible human being, and I’d have started boycotting his show even if I didn’t already find it unwatchable.)

So I’ve decided to devote today’s post to things that I love. Because, you see, even as I was bitching about Glee, I was in the process of binge-watching movies I hadn’t seen in awhile: Galaxy Quest, Moon (an unintentional Sam Rockwell sci-fi double feature!), The China Syndrome, Giant, and Rabbit Hole. Watching all these films in the span of a single weekend reminded me of something quite wonderful: I fucking love movies. It’s quite easy to lose sight of that when mired in draining pursuits designed to rob people of their love of the artistic power of a film. It’s really nice to just let a movie wash over you like a warm ocean wave, without having to analyze its artistic merits or commercial prospects, or thinking about how it fits into the current spate of releases, or thinking about anything other than what the film is offering.

I loved Rabbit Hole the first time I saw it. I couldn’t be sure whether or not I overvalued it, because I’d been mired in a sea of shit at the time I saw it. My viewing of it was surrounded by a handful of other theatrical releases—Casino Jack, Somewhere, Black Swan, and All Good Things—that were fucking awful, and I generally can’t stand Nicole Kidman. I had zero interest in seeing it, but I was the only one who could review it (being that it was released around Christmas), so I took the plunge, and I fucking loved it.

I watched it again, and I still fucking love it. It comes out on DVD/Blu-Ray on April 15th, and it requires your immediate attention. It got largely (and undeservedly) ignored at the Oscars, barely got a theatrical release, and was mostly dismissed, even by critics who liked it, as a dour, 21 Grams-esque film about grief. But that’s not what it is. Read the review I linked above if you want more information. My second viewing reaffirmed everything I felt the first time I saw it.

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Soul One

Everyone within the sound of my cyber-voice: if you live in Chicago or want a reason to visit, why not check out Soul One, a new play written by and costarring my friend, Travis Hughes. It runs Fridays and Saturdays throughout April, at the National Pastime Theatre. Tickets are only $15. There’s a special premiere this Thursday, March 31st, at 7:30. Read below for more information, then click the link to buy tickets.

Clock Productions will present the World Premiere of the musical “Soul One” by Travis Hughes opening Thursday, March 31, 2011 at 7:30pm at The National Pastime Theater, 4139 N. Broadway, Chicago.

A thought provoking comedy about a rock star who regresses to his past lives and discovers ancient memories and the source of his soul’s suffering. Along for the ride are his group of companions who return over and over again as different incarnations of past encounters.

Appearing in the cast are Travis Hughes, his real life brother Ryan Hughes, along with Josh Baker, Robbie Bersano, Gemma Crowley, Donaldson, Linsey Falls, Amy France, Katy Nielson, Ilana Plen, Chad Ramsey, Nikos Brisco and Sasha Walloch.

The show is directed by Jesse Stratton with Don Alsifi as Stage Manager and David Denman as Producer and Set Designer. Costumes are designed by Sienna Macedon with Sound Design by Laurence Bryan and Props by Keely Haddad-Null. Lighting Designer is Steven Besic and musical composition by Nikos Brisco

“Soul One” opens with a special Thursday performance on March 31 at 7:30pm. Thereafter the regular run is Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm to April 30. There are no performances on Easter Weekend (April 22-23).

While you’re at it, why not check out Travis’s first novel, The Book of Perry? I read it last year and found it alternately funny, tragic, and thought-provoking. It’s worth a read. He put out his second book, The Primrose Path, in August. I haven’t read it (I only just now discovered it on Amazon—thanks for the heads up, T-Ride), but I did just download it to my Kindle. It appears to have won an Breakthrough Novel Award in the category of science fiction, and guess what? The Kindle edition is free. Free, I tells ya!

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