Gimme Danger

I didn’t mean to make this a month of music docs, it’s just working out that way. Jarmusch’s Stooges doc is pretty good. Apparently its an absolute rule at this point that you can not make a music doc without animation in the modern age, but I’m getting used to it, and it’s well done here. I heard one review on the radio imply they sort of skipped the bad dope part, but I wouldn’t say that. They didn’t linger or glamorize it, which I’d say is wise and responsible in light of the currently epidemic. It’s not like you can really translate the narcotic experience anyway, but you can see evidence of it, as Ig’s “pretty face goes to hell”. I heard in an interview the other day he’s been clean, short of caffeine and some wine, since ’83. I’d like to see more of the Hero’s/Berlin era, when Bowie essentially saved his life by getting him out of the US and to East Germany, but that’s for the Iggy doc, surely yet to come.
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Rush – Time Stand Still

I went and saw this new Rush doc last week. I was pleasantly surprised: I thought there would be a lot of footage of newer stuff that only the diehard fan friends I went with would appreciate, but it was pretty great overall. I’d consider myself a “pre-GUP fan”, appreciate a few tunes here and there after that. The doc had a bit too much apology from Neil about wanting to stop touring, and don’t know if I’ll ever do a Rushcon, but… Bungled and left my phone at the first friends house before the movie so we couldn’t be in touch with the second, but he came on in to the theater eventually and it all worked out.

RIP Thom Jones (1/26/45-10/14/16)

I saw him speak at Powell’s in PDX in 9?… let’s just say late 90’s. Looking back over the info, I guess I’ve ready all of his published collections, though I certainly hope there is more stuff coming posthumously.

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One aspect of his life you might glean from some of his stories, but not mentioned in Wikipedia he shared with us at Powell’s that night. At one point he was living in Africa, possibly through the Peace Corp or similar, and possibly acting as a medic. Anyway, he had access to this like…oil barrel of morphine, and as one can imagine, some of the down time of village life… Anyway, not a good combo, but he came through to tell about it.

If you can imagine enjoying short stories revolving around themes like boxing, philosophy, medical school, naughty partying, the Vietnam war I highly recommend him. Crazy to see also he might have adapted Larry Brown’s The Rabbit Factory for film, as I happen to be reading it right now. One of those synchronous things. I also add, and this is so selfish I’d be appalled to admit it, if I didn’t know this was just my lil’ blog and of no more consequence: it’s strangely refreshing that this gem of a writer didn’t get “huge” and blown out, have his work turned into mediocre films, have quotations and impression bantered around by coffeehouse philistines etc. I’m sure the $ would have been sweet, but have started it’s own unknown path. And who knows what cult status maybe be yet to come, because he deserves it. Wait am I contradicting myself here? Anyway read and find out for yourself…

Debt

Will it make me feel better to write about this? Most likely not. Uber is running my car down into a pit. The car which isn’t completely paid for at this point. And I’m taking an expensive family vacation in a few weeks, paying most of my part. My credit is great and I’m pretty much in the most debt I’ve ever been. Came back in March with a slight surplus and jumped right into the toxic red, white and blue pool. Not exactly the deep end, but well into the middle where the first ladder might be… Treading water. Shit

Monsterama 2016

So while at Dragoncon last month I sort of came to a realization: in addition to being more a scifi than fantasy guy, I’m also a very classic and older b horror movie guy. I also heard about Monsterama, a small con in ATL in it’s 3rd year, and right at the Perimeter Marriot, very close to where I grew up.

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This year’s special guest was Caroline Munro. I had her sign a 7 Golden Voyages of Sinbad poster I got at Dcon for the occasion and had a pic with her. She was very swell and relatable, but unfortunately, when I asked about a biography admitted my wild imaginings of behind the scenes debauchery with co-stars like Christopher Lee, Tom Baker, Hasslehoff, or monster master Ray Harryhousen did not exist – at least not including her. Though she did meet David Bowie when he was little known and she yet to hit Bond girl status.

C SM and Caroline Munro

In addition to her panel, I attended one from a GA Tech lit teacher researching “real” vampires, i.e. those who drink blood for a feeling of power and fulfillment from willing doners; one on pulp writer Manly Wade Welman; and another on a subgenre some folks are trying to get going called Dreadpunk. My nieces came by briefly, since kids got in free, and we took pics with some of the monster statues. Also got some things from the merch room.

SpaceCat in light

Then waiting in line for the Spook Show before the screening of Star Crash (Spook show being a shlocky thing involving Jim Stacy and others, that at various times has gone on at the Plaza Theater and Drive In on Moreland), I took a pic of a kid in a space suit with a cat head. Her mom came over later to see the shot and I found out she was actually an 8 year old Special FX wiz, also speaking at a panel I had missed. Marvel the modern age! As mom was part of some Shining Twins cosplay, I got a pic of them too.

Shining Twins

In all, Monsterama was less organized than Dcon, thankfully smaller, and I’m not sure I missed anything by only attending one day instead of the three, but I’m not sorry I went and will look for it next year if I’m in town.

Train to Busan

It’s been a while since I’ve checked out any Asian film in the theater, much less horror. I heard a radio review about S Korea’s break out hit of the Summer, and first major zombie flick, plus a woman at Dragoncon told me where it was playing in deep Gwinnett.

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It’s good zombie fun! They kept things nicely make up vs. CG, except for a few pile up scenes, but then I am heavily critical of CG. There is sort of a sappy father/daughter story through it all, but it’s classic Korean cinema to mix genres. And after all, they need some story to hang the monsters on. We need to care somewhat about these characters if we are vested in them staying “survivors”. I also sort of question if since Oldboy these films feel they need to have a “horizontal fight sequence”, but then on a train, such a fight would be logical.

There’s also a bunch of societal critique going on, trust of corporations and govt. reflecting current events in Korea, but it’s not so heavy handed and you can remain gleefully oblivious should you choose.

Dragoncon 2016

Several years I’ve gone down just to take pictures, but as the event has grown, security and the fire marshal have become more of a drag for free roaming. So I told myself the next time I was in the country over Labor Day, I’d get the pass and do it right. And even cosplay!

Steampunk Jedi

Uncle Iroh finds the missing piece

Staying at my friend's in nearby People'sTown, I biked down each day. I only dressed on Saturday, and in addition to people thinking I was Uncle/General Iroh, which I was, people also guessed Kung Fu Panda and Raiden. Saturday was the main party night and I was well rocked. Over the course of the con I saw Battlebots fight (smaller/lighter versions than on the show: #Season 3) and went to panel about that show, one on space colonization, the history of Sci fi, effective writing of SF, a collection of animated shorts, two panels on Hammer Horror films (one just the 70's), one on metal and horror, a short Korean film, and a live reading of a lesser known Tolkien work.

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DSA girls take aim

Shining Twins

The entire event has grown, the merch area now taking two full floors of the Merchandise Mart. I got a few goodies at the end, D+D artifacts and small movie posters. It was a blast and I'll do it again right if I'm in town next year. And also start my costume a bit earlier, so I'm not running to CVS hours in to try and save it with safety pins. Shout out to the Cosplay repair squad who hooked me up.

2016 Rio Summer Olympics

I enjoyed watching this year and was glad, despite all the gloom and doom talk before hand, there were no major glitches for hosts Brazil. I watched mostly volleyball and football (I often avoid the S word: there is football, the world sport, and then the theatrical, over-hyped war simulation called American football). Also nice to see Brazil saved face against Germany after their 2014 Wold Cup dismantling, though I missed that actual match.

So while things went reasonably well for troubled Brazil, some US athletes obviously have a lot to learn about sportsmanship and grace. I’m glad to see both Solo and Lochte “slapped” for their big headed nonsense.

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Hope, you lovely redneck, Sweden actually won before the shootout, there was a bad offside call. They proved their laid back style by winning their next round as well. Not “cowardly”, just own it.

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And Lochte, you hot mess, it’s called pre-planning. You couldn’t have pulled off a totally debaucherous private party in Brazil? Drop a little coin, a hotel room across town, hookers and blow, a false name… Even if it had gone wrong and ended in scandal it would have been a few levels above “common amateur fratboy”. Congrats on getting your mommy involved too.

Looking at the megastars, I’d give U Bolt more props than M Phelps. While Bolt does do his poses for the camera, there is something more playful about it, a sense of modesty and fun with the glory. A smile beats an “autistic death stare” every time…

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