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In Review: Fantastic Fest 2017

September 29, 2017

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Hey friends, here’s what I saw at Fantastic Fest.  I caught 20 films!  I actually wanted to see 30, but I got hit with a sinus infection and it totally derailed me for most of the fest.  Still, I’m calling this year a win.  Read on.

PS – You can check out which films won awards at Fantastic Fest right HERE.

Anna And The Apocalypse

Plot:  A high schooler named Anna is all set to jet out of her hometown on a solo adventure, but then zombies show up.

Review:  This holiday horror musical really came out of the gate strong with catchy songs and a great sense of humor, and for a bit I was ready to peg it as the freshest and most fun zombie flick since Shaun of the Dead.  Then the song quality started to slip, the plot got predictable, the jokes went soft, and the movie shifted to being a fairly bland affair.  I actually still think it’s worth seeing, but be sure to keep those expectations in check.

Bad Genius

Plot:  Lynn is a genius.  Her friends are not.  Lynn is not rich.  Her friends are.  So, she takes their money, she gives them correct test answers, and all is well.  For a while, anyways.

Review:  I totally had sweaty palms for a large chunk of this movie.  It’s exhilarating, which is pretty crazy since the film is essentially about standardized tests.  Chutimon Chuengcharoensukying is great as the ever-ambitious, yet ever-helpful Lynn, and I really hope to see her in more stuff soon.  By the way, there’s a twist at the end this movie that I did not see coming at all.  Also, cheating has always been cheating to me, but I can’t say I necessarily feel that way after seeing Bad Genius.  Guess I’m a criminal now.

Blade Of The Immortal

Plot:  Manji is a samurai who can’t die, and Rin is a young girl trying to avenge her parents.  They team up.

Review:  Director Takashi Miike’s 100th film is long, brutal, surprisingly funny, and really awesome.  Manji (Takuya Kimura) and Rin (Hana Sugisaki) are great in a “big brother, little sister” sort of way, and I never once stopped rooting for them to win out against seemingly everyone in Japan.  So many people get hacked up in this movie, but Miike does a great job of keeping the enemies and fight scenes varied so that nothing feels repetitive.  Well, except for the sound of limbs getting cut off.  I hope you get to see this one soon.

Brawl In Cell Block 99

Plot:  A drug runner gets busted, tossed in prison, and then given a very difficult task by a bad person.

Review:  Just when I thought that director S. Craig Zahler couldn’t get any more violent than Bone Tomahawk, along comes his Brawl In Cell Block 99.  If you’ve ever wanted to see Vince Vaughn as quick-witted, no nonsense former boxer with a penchant for curb stomping the fuck out of people, then this movie is for you.

Darkland

Plot:  Zaid is a man on the hunt to find the person who murdered his brother, Yasin.

Review:  The Fantastic Fest site refers to this film as a “realistic, culturally relevant take on Batman.”  I wouldn’t go that far.  Yes, it’s a gritty look at a normal dude dealing out justice on his own terms, but it always goes where you expect it to and I found the main bad guy to be less than memorable.  Still, it’s far from a bad movie.

Downsizing

Plot:  Cellular miniaturization has become a thing and lots of people are going “small” in order to help the environment and/or change their lives.  Paul Safranek and wife Audrey are the latest to get in on the mini-action.

Review:  Alexander Payne’s latest film is a big slice of social satire that doesn’t quite all the way work.  I really loved the first hour and some change, but once it moves to try and actually make a point, things get messy and the film stumbles to the finish line.  Matt Damon is great in it the whole time, though.

Gemini

Plot:  Lola works for superstar actress Heather Anderson as her personal assistant.  She likes her job.  Or at least she does until Heather gets murdered, and the cops suspect that she did it.

Review:  I’ve yet to decide if the ending of Gemini is clever or a cop out, but either way, I did enjoy the movie.  I dug its overall neo-noir vibe, and I felt like it was paced really well.  On another note, I’ve really grown fond of Zoe Kravitz.  She’s got a way about her that’s hard to ignore.

Gerald’s Game

Plot:  Gerald and Jessie are a married couple in desperate need of a getaway, so they take one.  Whilst engaging in the first naughty moment of the weekend, Gerald dies and Jessie is left alone with her arms spread and handcuffed to separate bed posts.

Review:  I’ve never read the Stephen King book that this movie is based off of, so I have no idea if it’s similar or not.  What I can tell you is that I thought it was a great film.  Carla Gugino is stellar as Jessie, and the movie just wouldn’t quite work the same without her.  Mostly because a lot of it takes place in her head or via the viewpoint of her cuffed to a bed, so her reactions to things and her body in general is how you follow what’s going on.  Side note, there’s some legit gore on display here, so keep that in mind before you sit down to casually watch it some night on Netflix.

Gilbert

Plot:  This one is a documentary about Gilbert Gottfried.

Review:  If you’re a fan of Gilbert Gottfried, then I don’t know why you wouldn’t want to watch this.  It’s got some nice insight into how he got started, and you get to see him when he’s not on a stage saying crazy things.

Good Manners

Plot:  Ana hires Clara to help her around the house while she is pregnant.  Things start out great but eventually spiral down a weird hole.

Review:  There’s technically two movies to consider here, as there’s a jump forward in time that takes place around the midway mark.  Both halves are pretty solid.  I was pleased to find that the film actually turned out to be like the Fantastic Fest site described – “a Gothic fairy tale for adults.”

Jailbreak

Plot:  A gang needs to get to their recently-jailed member.  Some cops would prefer that not happen.

Review:  Jailbreak is pretty much a low rent take on The Raid.  I know that doesn’t sound all that nice, but I actually don’t mean it in any sort of bad way.  There are indeed some amateurish parts, but most of the fight scenes are well done and its swift run time doesn’t ever let it drag.

The Killing Of A Sacred Deer

Plot:  A man and his family get inundated with scary problems when an oddball teenager enters their lives.

Review:  Director Yorgos Lanthimos has quickly become a big favorite of mine.  Dogtooth, The Lobster, and The Killing Of A Sacred Deer – they’re all great films.  I don’t want to say much too much, as the movie definitely has a lot of moments that can be easily spoiled, so I’ll just stick to this – it’s fucked up story that left me with all sorts of weird thoughts floating around in my head.  By the way, Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman and Barry Keoghan deliver big time performances here.

Love And Saucers

Plot:  David Huggins swears that he lost his virginity to an actual alien.  This documentary explores his claim.

Review:  This one is only about an hour long, so there’s not much to it other than David Huggins talking about his various experiences with extraterrestrials beings.  I’m guessing that some think his stories and paintings are interesting (or maybe funny), but I mostly found them to be tedious.  Not really my thing here.

Mary And The Witch’s Flower

Plot:  A young girl finds a special flower that magically charges a broom and takes her to a school that trains witches.  From there, things don’t go quite as planned.

Review:  I’ll be honest, I’ve always found the Studio Ghibli-type stuff of the world to be pretty hit or miss.  Sometimes the movies just go on for far too long, or I don’t like the characters.  Thankfully, I didn’t run into that here.  I found this one to be a charming, creative affair that’s beautifully animated.  I’d watch it again.

Pin Cushion

Plot:  A teenage girl and her mom move to a new town.  Things don’t go well.

Review:  I didn’t like this movie.  It’s barely 80 minutes long, and yet I felt like it dragged on for an eternity.  I’m not even sure what it was trying to say.

Ron Goossens: Low Budget Stuntman

Plot:  Drunk stuntman Ron Goossens’ sleazy lesser half has tossed down an ultimatum.  If he doesn’t figure out a way to sleep with Bo Maerten, the Netherlands biggest movie star, then she will take their unborn child and leave forever.

Review:  I don’t know if you any of you have seen New Kids Nitro or New Kids Turbo, but they are some of the loudest, dumbest comedies ever.  Ron Goossens, I figured, would be more the same since it’s from that team, but it surprised me with its black comedy-lean.  I wanted to laugh at but also hold Ron (Tim Haars).

The Square

Plot:  Since this film is thick, I’m just going to borrow a line from IMDB here – “a poignant satirical drama reflecting our times.”

Review:  Big fans of director Ruben Ostlund’s Force Majeure should be excited about The Square, as it’s just as funny, well made and interesting.  Although, I can’t say it’s anywhere near as accessible.  This film lunges in a lot of directions and occasionally gets so dense that it can be difficult to pick up exactly what it’s putting down.  If you want a great think-piece though, then seek it out.

Super Dark Times

Plot:  Some kids accidentally do something awful.  What follows is them trying to hold themselves together.

Review:  I know the title here is Super Dark Times, but oh my is this movie is for real dark.  I was actually caught off guard by where it one went.  Owen Campbell as Zach and Charlie Tahan as Josh make for two of my favorite performances of the entire festival.  By the way, I think I’m scared of teenagers now.

Tiger Girl

Plot:  A girl named Maggie wants to be a cop, but she fails the tryout and instead is set to train to be a security guard.  While doing this she meets a rebellious young lady called Tiger, and then things go off the rails.

Review:  I was excited to see this because it has Ella Rumpf (from Raw) in it, but the film mostly fell flat for me.  I think it’s because you’re supposed to find its characters to be edgy and meaningful, but I couldn’t bring myself to like any of them.

Vidar The Vampire

Plot:  Vidar is really tired of being a farmer.  He wants loose women and stuff!  A chance encounter with a vampire Jesus may just give him what he desires.

Review:  This is one of those bonkers Fantastic Fest movies that you either love or hate because of how bonkers it is.  I wasn’t a fan.  I do think it has some really funny moments, but overall it’s definitely one of those films where me not being from its country of origin (Norway) proved to be too much of a culture hurdle.

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Hip Hop Hooray (Leah)

September 29, 2017

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How nice of you to stop by in between debating how the NFL got linked with the military, donating to Puerto Rico, Houston, Florida, and Mexico, and wondering how our government is going to be embroiled in scandal next week!  Sometimes it feels like the apocalypse is speedily on its way to our door, which is a great time to sit back, bump some tunes, crack open a cold one, contemplate the impending end of human life as we know it, and look forward to the weekend.  I made this mix for you – maybe the only one on the internet that stretches from Open Mike Eagle (who released a stellar album this week) all the way to Cardi B – and it roughly goes from more mellow to more turnt, so I hope you enjoy the build up to the end of your week. Happy Friday!

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Protomartyr

September 28, 2017

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The new Protomartyr album, Relatives In Descent, will be out tomorrow, and to get you further jazzed for its release the band has just put out a new single.  It’s a straight up rocker, which I think is a nice change of pace for them.  Enjoy.

PS – Don’t miss the band at Barracuda on October 20.

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Show Of The Week

September 27, 2017

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There’s a couple of big shows that I’m really excited about later this week.  One is The War On Drugs on Saturday (that’s night 1 of 2 at Stubb’s), and then SZA on Sunday at Emo’s.  Both acts have put out really great albums this year, and I can’t wait to hear those songs live.  Since you can’t go to either though because they’re SOLD OUT, here’s two other shows I’m really pumped for.  This week is packed!

Tonight is Jay Som at Sidewinder.  Her 2017 release, Everybody Works, is a damn good pop album that I listen to all the time.  Tix will be $15 at the door.  Stef Chura and Madeline Kenny will open.

On Friday it’s Otis The Destroyer’s album release show at Hotel Vegas.  The dudes are one of my favorite local bands, and I’m ready to get my hands on their debut LP, Keep Bashing.  This one is presented by my radio show, 101X Homegrown.  Openers are Slomo Drags, Honeyrude and Dr. Joe.

BONUS Show Recommendations:

Tonight:
- The Bad Lovers, Magic Factory, Nick Allison & The Players Lounge, Loteria at Hotel Vegas
- Magna Carda, Tomar & The FCs at 3ten ACL Live
- Arcade Fire, Wolf Parade at the Erwin Center

Thursday:
- Vampyre, Exhalants at Beerland
- Naomi Punk, The Zoltars, 2069 at the Mohawk
- Unwed Sailor, Deep State, PR Newman, Buhu at The Electric Church

Friday:
- Pinegrove, Florist, Lomelda at Barracuda
- Monk Parker, Adam Torres, Thor & Friends at the Mohawk
- Big Thief, My Golden Calf at the Mohawk
- The Banisters, A. Sinclair, Lola Tried, New Fame, Alex Riegelman at Cheer Up Charlies
- Father John Misty, Weyes Blood at Bass Concert Hall
- Black Pistol Fire at Emo’s
- Matchbox Twenty, Matt Nathanson at H-E-B Center at Cedar Park

Saturday:
- Croy and the Boys, John Wesley Coleman III, Wild Bill & the Lost Knobs, Welply at The Electric Church
- King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, Sailor Poon at the Mohawk
- The Cribs, Paws at Antone’s
- The Dig, Kolars at Barracuda
- The War on Drugs, Land of Talk at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater
- Belcurve at Stubb’s
- Ms. Lauren Hill, Nas, Chronixx, Nick Grant, Lakim at Austin360 Amphitheater at Circuit of The Americas

Sunday:
- SZA, Smino, Ravyn Lenae at Emo’s
- The Flaming Lips, Mac DeMarco, The Garden at ACL Live at the Moody Theater
- The War on Drugs, Land of Talk at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater
- Wilco at Bass Concert Hall

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LIV

September 26, 2017

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Every time a new LIV song gets released I think there’s also going be word on when to expect an actual album, but it never happens.  Will we just get singles forever?  Perhaps.  Things could be worse, I suppose.  Below is their latest song, a tribute to Lykke Li’s mother and Andrew Wyatt’s father, who both recently passed away.  Enjoy.

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101X Homegrown Podcast

September 25, 2017

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Check out the latest 101X Homegrown!  Enjoy.

Zoltars – Sincere
Otis The Destroyer – Van Rosita
Slomo Drags – Going Out Of Business
Max Frost – Withdrawal
Lomelda – Interstate Vision
Monk Parker – Prom
Balmorhea – Sky Could Undress
A. Sinclair – Just Remind Me
Black Pistol Fire – Lost Cause
Midnight Stroll – Good People
Palo Duro – Embers
(NEW) Doom Side Of The Moon – Money

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Screaming Females

September 25, 2017

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I cheered last week when I saw that Screaming Females had a new single.  However, I then followed that up with a frown when I realized it was limited-run 7″ (like way limited – 24 copies!) that was only going to be available in a record store in New Jersey.  Thankfully the band has now digitally released the track, and I can get back to smiling.  It’s do damn good.  Why aren’t they absolutely huge?  I think they’re one of the best rock acts out there.  Enjoy.

PS – You better go see Screaming Females when they play Barracuda on October 24.

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Angel Olsen

September 21, 2017

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You know what sucks?  Waking up with a fever.  You know what doesn’t suck?  Waking up to an email with details on an Angel Olsen collection of B-sides, rarities, and demos from the past several years.  It’s called Phases, and it’ll be out on November 10.  Enjoy.

PS – Fly On Your Wall is from the Our First 100 Days comp.  Special is a never before released tune from the My Woman recording sessions.

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Movie Breakdown: Kingsman – The Golden Circle (Noah)

September 21, 2017

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Pre-Screening Stance:

I’m still smarting from the distasteful end of the mostly enjoyable original flick. I know, I know, it’s just one line about anal sex, but I’m a sensitive old man.

Post-Screening Ramble:

Matthew Vaughn’s Kingsman – The Golden Circle follows the rules of the sequel just about to a tee. Where in the first Eggsy (Taron Edgerton) learned the ropes of being a well-dressed super spy in the service of Kingsman, in part two he’s robbed of everything he loves and forced to join up with his American counterparts – the Statesman – to solve the mystery of who done the dirty deeds (not a spoiler: it’s psychopathically nostalgic drug runner played by Julianne Moore). This is just the tip of the narrative iceberg though – Colin Firth’s Galahad reappears afflicted with amnesia, Eggsy’s girlfriend (Hanna Alstrom, the Princess of Sweden as seen in the final scene of the last flick) gets into trouble, the President of the United States is up to bad things, there’s stadiums full of cages and a secret plague slowly seeping into the drug users of the world and, I kid you not, more. It’s a stuffed film, bloated even. It feels like the penultimate issue in a crossover between two comics, the one where there’s the X-Men AND The Avengers and the bad guys and every page is a splash page and there’s twenty battles and thirty romantic entanglements and it’s so heavy you can barely stuff it under your bed so your stupid little brother doesn’t get his snotty hands on it. It’s fun – as is any movie where there’s a character named Whiskey (Pedro Pascal) with a laser lasso, and Elton John, I shit you not, jump kicks a guy in the face, but the excessive, well, everything spreads the film extremely thin. Characters from the trailers are turned into extended cameos (Jeff Bridges, I’m talking about you) and whatever subtle point about the American War on drugs that Vaughn was trying to make is muddled and underdeveloped. What really drags the film down though is that Vaughn is trying to make this more than a stylish drawn, beautifully executed super-hero spy flick. He is, because he’s a good director, trying to imbue it with actual characters with actual emotions, but with so much going on, there’s no chance that any of the emotional beats ever really land. The action though, whoa doggie, it’s amazing. There’s a fluid, whip-effect to Vaughn’s action sequences – the camera dances around and through the fights like a participant – and the director uses it to turn every battle (and they are battles) into a breath-taking rush. It’s a fun flick, don’t get me wrong, and in the hands of an artist like Matthew Vaughn, it never gets boring, never loses steam, is never less than exciting. It’s just too much.

One Last Thought:

Matthew Vaughn can’t get through a film without some sort of raunchy over-the-top bit of humor involving a female orifice. So, prepare yourself.

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Movie Breakdown: Kingsman – The Golden Circle

September 21, 2017

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Pre-Screening Stance:

If you ask me, Matthew Vaughn has never directed a bad film.  With that being said, there’s something about Kingsman – The Golden Circle that seems off.  Here’s hoping that its flat trailers have been hiding all of the best parts.

Post-Screening Ramble:

I went into Kingsman – The Golden Circle not expecting much and feeling a little miffed about it being two hours and twenty minutes long.  I walked out anxious for the third entry and wondering why the movie didn’t run another 15 minutes or so.  Eggsy/Galahad (Taron Egerton) is back, but he’s not the immature, lost kid from the first film.  He’s a Kingsman vet, he has a steady girlfriend in Princess Tilde (Hanna Alstrom, the … backdoor girl from the end of the last movie), he’s got good friends, and all is well.  Naturally, no one in a movie can be this happy, so his life hits a real speed bump when a drug lord named Poppy (Julianne Moore) poisons people all over the world (via her products – weed, cocaine, etc.) and also wipes out the Kingsman.  This sends Eggsy/Galahad and Merlin (Mark Strong) on the run and into the hands of the Statesman, the American equivalent of the Kingsman, which features Champagne (Jeff Bridges), Ginger Ale (Halle Berry), Whiskey (Pedro Pascal) and Tequila (Channing Tatum).  Also, somehow someway, the original Galahad (Colin Firth) pops up, and then there’s a real damn party at play with far too many characters.  The movie works though, as the majority of the folks on the screen take a back seat in favor of a wildly entertaining amount of pure comic book-inspired action.  Kingsman – The Golden Circle is a blast.  Yes, there’s too much going on and not enough time for you to get to know most of the movie’s inhabitants, but you won’t care because you’ll be delighted by just how outright bonkers this sequel is on all fronts.  I mean, there’s a laser lasso!  And robo-dogs!  And so much more!

You’re not going to find anything at the theater this weekend that’s more fun than Kingsman – The Golden Circle.  By the way, I’d re-watch the first one before you see part two.  There are a lot of references from it that get quickly thrown around.

One Last Thought:

I think it’s time that Jeff Bridges create a new favorite character.  He’s now played the same cowboy in Kingsman – The Golden Circle, True Grit, R.I.P.D, Hell Or High Water and whatever else.  And yes, I know that the majority of those aren’t even bad movies, I just want to see him do something else.

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Show Of The Week

September 20, 2017

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I’m out of play on the show-front this week, as Fantastic Fest will be eating up all of my time.  If I were available though, I’d definitely hone in on seeing Balmorhea.  The nice thing here is that there’s actually three chances to see them.  The first shot is Thursday night (with Will Johnson) at Stateside at the Paramount, the second is Friday night (with Caroline Says) at Stateside, and the third is at Waterloo Records on Sunday.  I’ve heard their new album, Clear Language, and I can confirm that it’s good.  Get out there and show some support!

The Stateside shows are $20 each.  The Waterloo gig is FREE!

PS – The final show in the 93.7 KLBJ’s Sunset Series is happening this Sunday out at Ernie’s On The Lake.  Go see Nakia & The Blues Grifters, Grupo Massa and Nic Armstrong & The Thieves!  It’s FREE!  Music starts at 5pm.

BONUS Show Recommendations:

Tonight:
- Frankie Rose, Tres Oui at Barracuda
- Loteria, Lola Tried, Major Grizz, Dinner with Matt Gilchrest, Ooni at Hotel Vegas
- Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires, Xetas, The Sour Notes, The Midgetmen at Cheer Up Charlies
- Tenacious D at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater
- Depeche Mode, Warpaint at Austin360 Amphitheater at Circuit of The Americas

Thursday:
- The Warlocks, Psychic Ills, The Well, Troller, Tamarron, Lake of Fire, DJ Al Lover at Barracuda
- Suspirians, Jeweled Snakes, Evil Triplet, How I Quit Crack at The Electric Church
- Alex Camreron, Jack Ladder at The Sidewinder
- Sphynx, Hank & Cupcakes, The Nymphs, Plastic Picnic, Deep Cuts at Cheer Up Charlies
- Royal Forest, Common Velvet, Kara Mosher at the Sahara Lounge
- Banks at Emo’s

Friday:
- Walker Lukens at Waterloo Records
- Lee Fields & The Expressions, Mama K & the Shades at the Mohawk
- Grape St. at Stubb’s
- Harvey Can’t Mess with Texas: A Benefit Concert for Hurricane Harvey Relief with Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, Leon Bridges, Lyle Lovett, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, Ryan Bingham, Ha*Ash, house band Asleep at the Wheel at the Erwin Center
- Daryl Hall & John Oates, St. Paul & The Broken Bones at Cedar Park Center

Saturday:
- Descendents, Riverboat Gamblers, Scott Reynolds at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater
- Megafauna, Pearl Earl, The Sun Machine at Hotel Vegas
- Say Girl Say, -Us., Kay Weathers at the Mohawk
- Moon Taxi, Los Coast at Emo’s
- Buenos Diaz, Mandy Rowden, Wil Cope, Seela at Music Lab
- Pecan Street Festival

  • Tres Oui (9pm), Queue Queue (7:40pm), Satalights (6:20pm), Mean Jolene (5pm), Ladyfang (3:40pm), Pearl Earl (2:25pm), Obscured by Echoes (1:10pm), Tiarra Girls (noon) [Red River stage]
  • Jackie Venson (8:45pm), Migrant Kids (7:25pm), Amy Edwards & the Hi-Fis (6:05pm), Moving Panoramas (4:45pm), Emily Bell & the Talkbacks (3:25pm), Wiretree (2:15pm), Sefo (1:05pm), Bourgois Mystics (noon) [Neches stage]
  • Booher (9pm), The Human Circuit (7:40pm), Levees (6:20pm), Boca Abajo (5pm), Kiko Villamizar (3:40pm), SaulPaul (2:20pm), Pat G (1:10pm), DJ Czech One (noon) [Trinity stage]
  • 11am-10pm, free, all ages on 6th Street

Sunday:
- Pecan Street Festival

  • Kay Odyssey (6:10pm), The Golden Boys (4:55pm), Baby Robots (3:45pm), ST 37 (2:20pm), Abigail und Hansel (1:10pm), Cinders (noon) [Red River stage]
  • Peligrosa (5:40pm), Royal Teeth (4pm), Knifight (2:40pm), Fragile Rock (1:20pm), Monoceja (noon) [Neches stage]
  • Beat Imprint (5:40pm), Ashley Borerro (4:30pm), Sheilava (3:20pm), Color Candy (2:10pm), The Rated Exes (1pm), Peter Stopchinski (noon) [Trinity stage]
  • 11am-10pm, free, all ages on 6th Street

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My Must-See Films At Fantastic Fest 2017

September 19, 2017

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Oh my.  Fantastic Fest is here!  I usually like to somewhat blindly jump into the fest and let the films surprise me, but this year I decided to take a different approach and actually make myself a short list of movies that I have to see.  Below you’ll find those selections.

PS – I used Noahphex’s Youtube compilation of FF trailers.  You should check it out!  He’s got just about all of the fest’s films there.

Blade Of The Immortal

I can’t believe this is Takashi Miike’s 100th film.  That’s crazy.  On a related note, this adaptation of the Blade Of The Immortal manga looks like a lot of fun.

Brawl In Cell Block 99

Vince Vaughn beats up a car in the teaser for this movie from S. Craig Zahler (he did the excellent Bone Tomahawk).  That’s some Street Fighter 2 kind of stuff.  I’m in.

Wheelman

I haven’t seen anything else by Jeremy Rush, the writer/director of Wheelman, but I really like Frank Grillo (Captain America: Civil War), producer Joe Carnahan (The Grey, The A-Team) and car chases.

Gerald’s Game

The teaser for his Stephen King adaptation by Mike Flanagan (Hush) makes me feel uneasy.  I’ll rally up though just so that I can watch Bruce Greenwood handcuff Carla Gugino to a bed.

Super Dark Times

Super Dark Times registers to me as a fairly silly name, but the movie actually looks like it’s a rather twisted affair.  I like it when coming of age movies go dark.

Good Manners

I love the mysterious tone that’s all over the trailer for this film.  I’m also really into the way the Fantastic Fest site describes it as a a “gothic fairytale for adults.”

Applecart

I can’t quite figure out why this is called Applecart, but it looks like a a pretty interesting horror film.  I can’t wait to watch everything go wrong for all the characters in it.

The Killing Of A Sacred Deer

I really love writer/director Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster, so of course I’m excited to see his follow-up.  He has a super weird sense of humor that I just really enjoy.  Also, I’m intrigued by Alicia Silverstone’s supposedly awesome appearance in this movie.

The Square

Because Force Majeure is so damn great, I’m down to watch anything from writer/director Ruben Ostlund.  With that being said, I do hope that The Square is a worthy follow-up.

Downsizing

This one from Alexander Payne is the Fantastic Fest closing film this year.  It looks as charming as can be.

Bad Genius

i wanted to see this film before I even made it halfway through its trailer.  Down with standardized tests!

Ron Goossens Low Budget Stuntman

This is the latest from the team behind the really dumb but really funny New Kids films.  I won’t be missing it.

Blue My Mind

Here’s another Fantastic Fest entry that looks like a messed up coming of age tale.  I’m in!

The Cured

A movie that takes place after a world-conquering zombie virus been cured?  That sounds neat.

Les Affames

Here’s another interesting-looking zombie film.

The Merciless

Few things at Fantastic Fest go over as well as Korean gangster films.  This will be a lot of fun to watch with that crowd.

Gemini

I love the look and feel of this film’s trailer, and the Fantastic Fest site compares it to Drive, Nightcrawler, Heat and The Driver.  That sounds like a winner to me.

Darkland

Everything about this movie looks intense.  Guess I’ll have to drink during it.

There are a handful of films that don’t have trailers out, but I think they sound neat.  Here are those picks with links to their Fantastic Fest pages.

Thoroughbreds (black comedy!)
Revenge (survival horror!)
Anna And The Apocalypse (horror musical!)
1922 (Stephen King adaptation!)

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Julien Baker

September 19, 2017

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Julien Baker’s new video for Appointments just made me realize that I never actually shared the single.  Grab your headphones and tissues before you hit play.  Her new album, Turn Out The Lights, is due out October 27.  Also, you’ll be able to catch her at Emo’s on December 18.  Enjoy.

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101X Homegrown Podcast

September 18, 2017

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Here’s the latest 101X Homegrown!  Enjoy.

Walker Lukens – Don’t Wanna Be Lonely (Don’t Wanna Leave You Alone)
(NEW) The Midnight Stroll – Good People
(NEW) Palo Duro – Embers
Sphynx – Just Tonight
Tamarron – Let’s Get Out
Tres Oui – Prince Of Pop
Balmorhea – Clear Language
Otis The Destroyer – Fat Attraction
Kay Odyssey – Coming On
Royal Forest – Goldwallpaper
Wiretree – JF Sebastian
The Sour Notes – Ride It Out
Transit Method – Parasight

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Alex Lahey

September 18, 2017

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I had a weekend full of drinking and whatnot, so the title of Alex Lahey’s new single feels rather appropriate today.  By the way, are you guys pumped for her upcoming album, I Love You Like A Brother (due October 6)?  Every single off of it so far has been really damn great.  Enjoy.

PS – See Alex at Barracuda on November 30.

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