I caught Speed Racer at IMAX a couple weeks ago and I really enjoyed it! It's much better then all the blah reviews out there-plus, after all-this is a movie based on a cartoon-what are people expecting? The storyline was perfectly fine and it was a decent mix of silly goofy stuff and bits of family drama. But the real reason to see this movie is the fantastic visuals. Not just the racing scenes, but all sorts of quirky, bright, intense scenes and bits and pieces that just were dazzling. Film making is not only about telling a great story, it is often about creating a great image and this movie is light on story but wonderful on image. The best popcorn film i've seen in a long time. 4 molos
Everyone loves Ironman! I enjoyed it. Pretty good. You know what would have really made this film great-well two things-one is to not give so much of the action away in the previews, but that is the way things are these days....the other would be if it were rated R. Robert Downey Jr's excellent performance would have been so much the better with that inserting of actual realism. This guy is supposed to be a womanizing, drunk, egocentric smart-ass. Well, let's see some debauchery and swearing and all that stuff....
A las, Hollywood studios aren't stupid enough to release a film like this in a truly adult format. They'd probably make 200 or more million less. So it goes. Any who, the movie was fine, and had some funny stuff thrown in which was cool. 3.5 Molos
Tokyo Police Club released a highly anticipated full length to their very energetic EP of a year or so ago called Elephant Shell. It's a pretty sharp, clean rock album from this young canadians. A bit in the vein of Cold War Kids except less bluesy and more post-punk. If that makes any sense. I like it okay but it does not have the same energy as their debut EP so that was a bit of a disappointment. 3 Molos
Now for something completely different but also very familiar sounding-check out the new album by Neon Neon. I was a bit perplexed by this album which is some kind of experimental collaboration between Boom Bip and thC again. Except also throw in some crazy hip hop and some crazy beats. And somehow the eclectic album works. It's the most delightful surprise I've encountered lately. 4 Molos
In the Arts:
Well I haven't seen that many shows of late I have to admit. Although the rest of the Dario Robleto show did open at the Frye, and I'd say it's very hit-and-miss but worth a look. Some of the work starts to feel overly-clever and thin too. The craftsman ship, the way he combines and reconfigures materials is very strong, but the rational, the thinking behind the work leaves something to be desired. Without the very nice staging of the Heaven show it loses just a bit more meaning and implied context. Perhaps if the works were simply presented as sculptures he made, with out the back story and the ambiguous explanations I could just take them for that....but as with most museum shows, there is plenty of museum-speak floating around.
Oh well. I've seen worse work that's for sure.
There's a lot going on at the 108 Occidental Gallery that's worth checking out, including a group show opening June 5th entitled Papercuts (all works on paper, get it?) that will include some works by yours truly. Some of the kind of light animal/nature sketches I have done. www.occidentalgalleryseattle.com
The same evening we're showing a hot young street artist at the Fat Tiger who is going by the moniker Jet Pack McLeod. He may be only 10, but his show will blow you away. In addition to his work, there's a big monstrous mural in creation that I can't really explain, but hopefully will be worth a look. But come by June 5th from say 6 - 10 to 619 Western 3floor North and check out what's going on at the tiger.
Best film I have seen, released in 2008:
1. Speed Racer
4. The Bank Job
5. Indiana Jones
(I really haven't been going out to the movies at all...)
Best records of 2008 (that I have heard):
1 Grand Archives Grand Archives
2 Neon Neon
3 Vampire Weekend Vampire Weekend
4. Devotchka A Mad and Faithful Telling
5 Sun Kil Moon April
6 Nada Surf Lucky
7 Stephen Malkimus and the Jicks Real Emotional Trash
9 MGMT Electric Feel
10 Tapes N' Tapes Walk It Off