Black Dog Newsletter for Week Ending July 23rd

You know, as much as I like to bitch about Vancouver and all the dolts and wankers that make life trying here, it really is a special town. I spent a portion of the afternoon down at Third Beach today. It’s my favorite beach in the city – we have beaches in the city! – and it was a lovely way to spend the afternoon. I had a couple of beers and what not, went for a swim (water is pretty freakin’ cold) and just chilled. It was relatively quiet and beautiful and relaxing, besides the odd seaplane and inane conversation going on around me. It was a nice change from the incessant traffic, car alarms, crazy people in the park, and general din of city life. I’m now sitting in my backyard having yet another beer. This is good. If you can swing it, get to a beach or a park or whatever makes you happy in this busy, noisy city. It will save your life. That and watching good movies. Don’t forget the beer.

New Releases for Tuesday July 17th

Black Butterflies – Bio-pic of famed South African poet Ingrid Jonker who plied her craft during Apartheid’s nasty rein. Supposed to be pretty good for those of you who are into such stuff. Even has the Hobo with a Shotgun, Rutger Hauer, so it has that going for it.

Casa De Mi Padre – Pretty odd Will Farrell comedy, spoken entirely in Spanish, about a “filthy rancher” who wants to save his family from the encroaching drug trade spreading across Mexico. Sometimes funny, a lot of times not, this weird little ditty plays like a cheap Mexican soap kinda thing – lots of fake backgrounds, terrible props, suspect editing and music and acting. Made me laugh about a half dozen times which is Ok I guess. Runs about 80 minutes or so which is just long enough. It’s almost like they were afraid to go balls out on this. Too much restraint, not enough guts. Also on the Blu Ray. (We didn’t receive most of the copies we ordered for Cambie – hopefully they’ll be there soon)

Clean Bin Project – In our increasingly wasteful society comes this documentary that finds partners Jen and Grant going head to head in a comedic battle to see who can swear off consumerism and produce the least amount of garbage in an entire year. Be an interesting study. I’m always so annoyed and amazed at how much shit we produce and consume. The overuse of plastics, packaging and all kinds crap that we don’t need is so depressing. Makes me so angry being in line at the grocery store and seeing people putting stuff like bananas or a couple of oranges or whatever in a bag to take it to the check-out only to have them put in another bag. What is the point of this? Are these people not even thinking about what they are doing. Or do they even care? Always bring a bag to the store with you. And avoid small bottles of water. Huge landfill problem. And disposable diapers. And pop cans. I could go on. (Sorry for the lecture – had to get that off my chest).

Friends with Kids – Fine cast – Adam Scott, Kristen Wiig, John Hamm (Mmm Hamm), Maya Rudolph etc. star in this romantic comedy about two best friends who decide to have a sprog together but try to keep their relationship platonic because, for some reason, they think having a kid will destroy the romantic portion of the relationship. Geez, I wonder if everything doesn’t go as planned and they end up all happy like in the end? Kids don’t rule you, you rule the fucking kids. What? Who said that?

Johnny Carson: King of Late Night – Sis-boom-bah! If you remember that joke from Carson’s Swami routine, good on ya. I was a big fan of Johnny Carson growing up and I hear that this doc about the man is pretty outstanding. It’s the sound of a sheep exploding by the way.

Get the Gringo – Mad Mel returns to his smarmy actiony tough guy roles in this very fun and entertaining Mexican prison dealy. Mel finds himself behind bars in the strangest, most interesting prison I’ve seen on screen in ages (apparently it’s based on real Mexican prisons). There he befriends a mom and her son (yes you read that right) as they try to survive in the crazy world behind those walls. I was surprised how good this was, the first 40 mintues or so are fantastic, considering it’s basically a straight to DVD flick. I guess Mel’s “problems” precede him – for good reason – which makes it tough these days to find an audience. If he’d just keep his foul mouth shut and make films like this maybe people might like the doofus. Also on the Blu Ray.

Lockout – Kind of an Escape from New York in space minus the awesomeness of John Carpenter and Kurt Russell. Guy Pearce is offered a chance of freedom if he can rescue the President’s daughter from a maximum security prison on the moon or somewhere in space. I wonder if that is what Newt Gingrich had in mind with his living-on-a-moon-base idiocy? Also on the Blu Ray.

Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt – Another foodie doc about some young whipper-snapper chef in New York who makes crazy shit like “eel, violets and chocolate” and “espuma of calf brains and foie gras” and “perfumed snails served in a lady’s hat” and “scorched duck knees with creamed neck of platypus” (I made the last two up).

Midnight Son – Horrorish dealy about a guy with a rare skin condition who can’t be exposed to the daylight and who also finds that,as his condition worsens, he finds the need to drink human blood. Why can’t they just tell us that he’s a fucking vampire? Supposed to be a real good little number though.

Mutantes: Punk Porn Feminism- Documentary exploring the pro-sex movement over the past three decades through interviews with activists, sex workers and performers alongside archive footage of actions and excerpts from feminist pornography. Yay, pro-sex! From the director of Baise-Moi.

Silent House – “Real Time” horror thriller – seems like it’s all done in one take – about a woman, Elizabeth Olsen, (she the Olsen sister with the talent) who finds herself and her dad under attack by some ghosts or goblins or Sasquatch or deranged spirits of some sort. Supposed to be a pretty good little horror thriller. Also on the Blu Ray.

The Three Stooges – Because the world needed more stooges. Thanks Farrelly Brothers. This was supposed to star Russell Crowe and Jim Carrey and someone else, (Sir Ian McKellan? Robert DeNiro?) That I would have watched. Also on the Blu Ray.

Coming Next Week

Meeting Evil
Salmon Fishing in Yemen
Angele et Tony
Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Treasure Island

Old stuff Just in

Sea of Love – Blu Ray

Recently viewed and Recommended

Get the Gringo
Pina 3-D
God Bless America
Jeff, Who Lives at Home
The Woman

That’s it for this week kids, hope that ya’ll can get outside, enjoy what Vancouver has to offer in the beautiful summer and then get back inside to watch something good.

Black Dog Video


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