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by Bill Gibron

16 Jun 2008

‘Death Race’ Remake Gets a Trailer
Ever since it was announced, fans have been anxiously awaiting any word on what noted genre journeyman (read ‘hack’) Paul W. S. Anderson would do to the beloved ‘70s road rage classic. Well, here’s your chance to see the brand new trailer - and oddly enough, it doesn’t look too bad. Much better than Alien vs. Predator or Soldier, anyway. [Yahoo]

New ‘Punisher’ is Teased as Well
While we aren’t sure who mandated a sequel, Lionsgate is unleashing another take on the mob-fighting vigilante this December. This time around, Thomas Jane is out, and Ray Stevenson (HBO’s Rome) steps in as the title character. Green Street Hooligan‘s Lexi Alexander is behind the lens. [IGN]

Bill Maher’s ‘Religulous’ Also Gets the Preview Treatment
Anyone who has watched the recent season of Real Time knows that host Maher has been carefully touting his anti-God documentary. Lionsgate finally gives us a taste of what we can look forward to come October. With Borat‘s Larry Charles in charge, we could be in for a brilliantly blasphemous romp. Check out Apple and the official website for more.

‘StepBrothers’ Gets Red Banded After the drubbing they took this past year - Will Ferrell with the underappreciated Semi-Pro, John C. Reilly with the overlooked biopic spoof Dewey Cox - both actors could sure use a quasi comeback. This sibling rivalry comedy from Andy McKay may help, especially after viewing the more “adult” oriented preview. [Trailer Addict]

Herzog’s ‘Lieutenant’ Still Going Strong - from Variety
Even with Abel Ferrara wishing him a speedy journey into the mouth of Hell (literally) Werner Herzog still seems intent on remaking (or in his own words, ‘reimagining”) the controversial 1992 drama. Nicholas Cage is already slated to stand in for Harvey Keitel, and now it seems Eva Mendez may be cozying up to her Ghost Rider costar as well. [Variety]

Krofft’s Bringing More Saturday Morning Classics to the Big Screen - from
With Land of the Lost already set for the big screen treatment, it seems those purveyors of classic ‘60s/‘70s psychedelic kid vid, Sid and Marty Krofft are bringing more of their oddball offerings to a Cineplex near you. Apparently, H.R. Pufnstuf and Sigmund (of ‘the Sea Monsters’ fame) are next up. []

‘Robotech’ Relaunch Gets Unusual Scripter - from the Hollywood Reporter
Last seen dealing (badly) with Stephen King’s Dreamcatcher, famed filmmaker/writer Lawrence Kasdan is rumored to be scribbling the celluloid version of the popular ‘80s anime staple. With his work on the new Clash of the Titan‘s remake, it marks the icon’s return to his roots (he did pen Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Empire Strikes Back, after all). [Hollywood Reporter]

DVD releases of Note for 17 June

Be Kind Rewind
The Carmen Miranda Collection
Classe Tous Risques - Criterion Collection
Fool’s Gold
Joy Division - Read the SE&L Review HERE
The Nude Bomb
Super High Me
Under the Same Moon
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins - Read the SE&L Review HERE

Box Office Figures for Weekend of 13 June

#1 - The Incredible Hulk: $54.9 million
#2 - Kung Fun Panda: $33.8 million
#3-  The Happening: $30.8 million
#4 - You Don’t Mess with the Zohan: $16.8 million
#5 - Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: $13.2 million
#6 - Sex and the City: $10.3 million
#7 - Iron Man: $5.1 million
#8 - The Strangers: $4.1 million
#9 - The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian: $3.1 million
#10 - What Happens in Vegas: $1.7 million

Films Opening This Week:

General Release:
Get Smart - the classic Mel Brooks/Buck Henry sitcom from the ‘60s get the big screen treatment, this time featuring Steve Carell as Maxwell Smart and Anne Hathaway as 99. Rated PG-13
The Love Guru - Mike Myers returns to live action comedy with this story of an American born shaman raised by Hindus. He is called in to save a hockey star’s failing marriage/career. Rated PG-13

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl - it’s the Depression, and our title heroine struggles mightily to save her family, and her friends, from financial ruin. Based on the popular doll line, with Oscar nominee Abigail Breslin in the lead. Rated G
Brick Lane - while it may seem like the standard story of an arranged marriage in free fall, Monica Ali’s novel provides a provocative backdrop for this take on the material. Rated PG-13

by L.B. Jeffries

16 Jun 2008

Every ex-core gamer has a particular couple of games that they were really good at. Those games, back when free time was abundant, that they utterly conquered. For me, it was always Starcraft. It wasn’t that I was unbeatable and this was all before the Korean domination, but I had a weird knack for efficiency in that game. I once won a bet with a superior player because I said I could get a higher score than him. When he blew apart my last Protoss drone, I happily collected twenty bucks as my ratings for resource collection, efficiency, and kill to unit all soared past his. To this day, I have no idea how the score system worked or what I did that made me score so highly. But I still like to think that I was one of the most efficient Starcraft players back in my prime.


But that was another time and place. A year out of college and way out of my video game prime, I was sitting in a restaurant kitchen in Lake Tahoe wondering how I’d gotten myself into such a mess. A little too much Steinbeck and way too much fear of growing up had made me pack everything I owned in a car and drive across the continent. I moved to the first internet job I could find, patiently waited for the ski season to fire up, and on the first day of skiing I turned my left knee’s inner meniscus into jelly. The ski accident left me a limping mess with an extremely unsympathetic landlord. I couldn’t wait tables anymore and most of the other ski jobs didn’t pay enough. So I did the only thing I could: I grossly exaggerated my resume and got a job in a restaurant. I’d been a prep cook for a couple of months before the ski season hit in a cafeteria, so I figured they couldn’t be all that different. Come in early, slice & dice, drink a beer, and fight over the music on the stereo for about 6 hours.

Unfortunately, a short-order restaurant and a cafeteria are about as different as night time and a kick to the groin.

by John Bohannon

16 Jun 2008

While the weekend was winding down, most people spent time lying under the shade or wandering outside of the shows into some of what else Bonnaroo has to offer. The organizers over the years have caught on to what shows to book for Sunday, and this year’s Sunday lineup was the perfect detox from an upbeat, fatiguing weekend.

Orchestra Baobab

Orchestra Baobab

As I made my way in, it looked like a lot of people had already cleared out of the festival—because the second largest stage at Bonnaroo was nearly empty. This could also be due to the fact that their fan base wasn’t exactly in attendance, but this was by far the sleeper show of the weekend. Senegal’s Orchestra Baobab (named after the famous club) took their brand of African tinged Latin music and put Sunday on the map. Being one of the most seminal world music bands since their resurgence in the United States due in part to their reissue of Pirate’s Choice in 2002, the low attendance of this show was near astonishing. Regardless, the boys brought passed their liveliness and spirit on to those that were lucky enough to stumble across the gem of the festival.

Solomon Burke

Solomon Burke

The same story followed for Solomon Burke, the King of Rock ‘n’ Soul. Everyone in attendance was either just getting out of the sun or over the age of 40, and until Burke’s enormous figure took the stage 45 minutes after his scheduled time—people swarmed towards the tent. Sporting a medley of “(Sittin’ On) Dock of the Bay” and “Mustang Sally” and cuts off his records from Proud Mary to Nashville—old and young alike were all smiles and sing-a-longs. He called for a group of dancers, and a small crowd flooded the stage to dance with the most soulful band of the weekend. As famous festival emcee Beatle Bob said, “This is real soul music, not Kanye West with a computer.”

Solomon Burke - Interview (Bonnaroo)

Broken Social Scene

Broken Social Scene

To close out the weekend, there was a time conflict of Broken Social Scene and Robert Plant & Alison Krauss—so I had to split up the two and catch a taste of both before heading on my way. BSS was a perfect closer for the hipster crowd—the colored Ray Bans were out in full force during their performance dancing along to the groups at time cluttered, yet epic compositions. “7/4 (Shoreline)” was the highlight of the show with the pulsating, constant drum beat awash in Amy Millan and Kevin Drew’s vocals. “KC Accidental” was also on point with its moments of Quadrophenia style guitar duets. [Download Broken Social Scene set]

Broken Social Scene - 7/4 (Shoreline) (Bonnaroo)

Broken Social Scene - KC Accidental (Bonnaroo)

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss were across the way giving the crowd a taste of what could’ve been with their psychedelic folk rendition of “Black Dog” that will leave your mouth watering. Krauss and Plant would trade off and then duet (with moments of T. Bone Burnett at the mic) throughout the performance composed of mostly tracks from their record Raising Sand, sharing the spotlight with complete admiration for one another. Neither have any kind of ego on stage and it shows—the way their voices match is so pure and enduring that one can only hope they share a career together for years to come.

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

As I cut the day short before Widespread Panic, I was ready to get on my way back to civilization. This year’s Bonnaroo was absolutely different from the five I have experienced before, and that’s why I keep going back. Some are better than others, and this one ranks at the top. All those out there that were worried about what this year’s lineup would do to the reputation of the festival need not worry. This festival is not “commercial” and never will be, so stop telling yourself that MTV and Clear Channel own the thing and making excuses not to go—because where in the hell else can you see this diverse of a lineup? No, it doesn’t have all your jambands, or all your indie rock delights—but that’s the glory of it—there is always something to see, and always something to expose yourself to. Do yourself a favor, make it out next year, and don’t be so judgmental of something different happening. It’s what makes Bonnaroo stand out at the top of the summer festival run.

by Jason Gross

16 Jun 2008

Laugh all you want to Universal and Rolling Stone for making weird moves in the world of marketing but they might have the last laugh in the end.  Starting with RS, this Women’s Wear Daily article tells that the ol’ magazine is rolling out a line of T-shirts and soon will have handbags and other fashion accessories.  Note that the WWD article makes fun of RS and its fogey status but the fact of the matter is that RS happens to still have a huge circulation, maybe one of the (if not THE) best for a music magazine.  With mag sales constantly dropping, the news biz (much like the record biz) is looking for ways to shore up their bottom line.  Branding, especially when you have a well-known name that’s still respected in some quarters (they have a seven figure circulation after all), is a smart idea for a mag to keep money flowing in.  Even if you don’t happen to be a fan of RS, it happens to be a good idea and one that you’ll see other smart pubs follow.  You also have to wonder if ideas like this might have helped to shore up mags like No Depression which recently went under.  I don’t think selling T-shirts by itself would have saved them but it could have been part of an overall plan/solution.

As for Universal, their plan is to start a series on the Bebo social network where an imaginary employee starts his own label and signs bands.  They’re letting users go in to rate them and to suggest groups to them too.  I don’t see a rosy scenario for this but the idea’s kinda intriguing.  The problem is that Universal doesn’t have a brand name like smaller labels do (say Sub Pop or Thrill Jockey or Def Jux)- I mean, who the hell is going to follow releases just because Universal puts them out?  But partnering with Bebo was a smart move on the part of Universal and the idea of an ongoing story (like a TV series) isn’t a bad idea if you happen to have some interesting scripts and worthwhile music.  Again, like the RS plan, even if you’re not a fan of anyone involved in the project, the idea has potential and shouldn’t be blown off- it might evolve into a better model elsewhere and turn some heads.

by PopMatters Staff

16 Jun 2008

Tilly and The Wall
Cacophony [MP3] (from O releasing 17 June on Team Love)

Pot Kettle Black [MP3] (from O releasing 17 June on Team Love)

Pot Kettle Black

Ron Sexsmith
Brandy Alexander [MP3]

Ed Harcourt
Revolution in the Heart [Video]

Lulu Rouge
Bless You [MP3]

Preteen Weaponry [MP3]

Praise Ye Jah [MP3]

Julie Doiron
So Fast [MP3]

//Mixed media

Con Brio: The Best New Live Band in America?

// Notes from the Road

"There’s a preciousness to McCarter and the rest of the mostly young band. You want to freeze the moment, to make sure they are taking it all in too. Because it’s going to change.

READ the article