Shame is the second feature film by British director Steven McQueen. The lead character, Brandon Sullivan, is portrayed by German actor, Michael Fassbender (also in A Dangerous Method this year), his sister Sissy Sullivan by Drive's Carey Mulligan and his boss David Fisher by Rubicon's James Badge Dale. The film received a NC-17 rating because of the explicit sexual content.
Brandon lives a double life, as a business man in modern-day NYC and as a sexual addict who can't control the time or space for his perverted behavior. Masturbation, cyber sex, downloading pornography at work or one night stands with total strangers are some of his daily activities. This becomes a problem when his sister Sissy, a free spirited lounge singer, crashes indefinitely in his apartment.
Fassbender's performance is groundbreaking and over the top. Mulligan's support acting is marvelous and compelling. The director creates an atmosphere of loneliness, desperation and hopelessness that captivates even the most difficult audience member. Aside of all full frontal nudity in some of the characters, the movie is much more than a softcore Cinemax-type. It explores human relationships between siblings of difficult upbringings, the two sides of the candy-coated corporate world, perverted lewd conduct and how humans react to sudden change of their routines.
McQueen has done a great job with his second effort. Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan, with back-to-back great performances in 2011-2012, are becoming Europe's new promises for the indie film making movement. 8 stars out of 10.
TSOL, Bad Religion, Youth Brigade and three opening acts played at Day II of the Golden Voice 30th Anniversary show. A full capacity crowd at the legendary venue, Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, for a night reminiscent of an old school SoCal punk rock bill. Several generations of punk enthusiasts gathered for this larger-than-life event presented by legendary rocknroll show producer, Gary Tovar.
The first act was a lousy band called A Pretty Mess. Female-led generic punk that left everyone wanting the headliners as soon as possible. The second worse thing, aside of this, was hearing a Ramones-only soundtrack between bands. A lack of variety that reminded us that definitely, the best was yet to come.
Mystic Records 80s outfit, The Grim, hit the stage for their blend of hardcore surf punk that set the tone for the rest of the night. Fast songs with potent guitar riffs that initiated circle pitters to wreck shit up. Things to highlight were the tallest bass player ever and the lead singer throwing out their entire merch to the crowd.
Sin 34, the female-fronted 80s hc band, came next. Led by singer Julie Lanfeld and drummer Dave Markey (from We Got Power Films fame), they blasted songs from their classic "Do You Feel Safe". It was so good to hear live, a sort of underrated band from that era. After this, arrived one of the main dishes of the feast, Youth Brigade. 2/3 of The Stern Bros, Shawn and Mark, accompanied by two young guns to play all their classics. "Blown Away", "Modest Proposal", "Men in Blue", "Fight to Unite", "Violence" and they ended their set with singalong classic "Sink with Kalifornja"(in the latter, the remaining Stern brother Adam as well as producer Gary Tovar, join them on stage for the encore).
The main reason for our attendance, TSOL, brought mayhem to the stage with their presence. Lead singer Jack Grisham with a full-face of make up and a suit joined by the other original members: guitar extraordinaire Ron Emory and pounding bass player Mike Roche. Keyboard-player (Greg Kuehn) included, they passed through their classic discography with great taste. Fast punky stuff like "Superficial Love", "World War 3" and "Abolish Government" and horror punk anthems as "Sounds of Laughter", "Silent Scream" and "Wash Away" kick some major ass. Grisham's witty and irreverent talk between songs stand them out as great punkrock performers, a thing musicians in general lack. Their classic necrophiliac tune "Code Blue" ended their round set like a bomb. Bad Religion closed the fest with an hour-long wall of sound full of their 3 decades repertoire. "Fuck Armageddon, This is Hell", "Do What You Want", "You Are the Government" heated up thousands of kids, old timers and walk ins. Their 3 guitar attack of Hetson (Circle Jerks), Baker (Minor Threat) and Gurewitz (Epitaph Records) was outstanding. Graffin (UCLA professor) and Bentley (original bassist) completed the full five-man front row performance. Songs like "I want to conquer the World", "Modern Man" and "Supersonic" continued the singalong extravaganza. Finally, to time travel to the eighties decade, they played never-before stuff from their first album. This was a great way to end this show because it completely fulfilled the purpose of showing the attendees how was punk rock back in the day. As Gary Tovar said: "Don't ever underestimate the power of Bad Religion". Post Scriptum: This fest started on Friday with X, Adolescents and Social D. and ends on Sunday with Descendents, Dickies and Vandals.
Legendary canadian auteur filmmaker, David Cronenberg, delivers his latest cinematic effort A Dangerous Method after four years apart from motion pictures. A film that goes back to the birth of psychoanalysis and its pioneers Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung. Starring are Viggo Mortensen as Freud, Michael Fassbender as Jung, Keira Knightley as Sabina Spielrein and Vincent Cassel as Otto Gross.
Jung, a Swiss Christian, and Freud, an Austrian Jew, were psychologists who disagreed over the way patients should be treated and this gave birth to Psychoanalysis. Everything Freud did was from a sexual perspective. Jung was more ortodox by helping patients recover to be functional beings. Jung began treating Sabina, a hysteric russian woman who was molested by her father, that her intelligence allowed her to become a doctor. After several months of treatment, Jung and Sabina began a sadomasochistic affair which eventually "cured" her. Jung ended up using extramarital sex as an escape to his boring married life. Freud hardly convinced the status-quo that his theories would play an important part in the study of human behavior.
At the end, this two important social scientists were nullify by the World Wars that later arrived. Freud ended up committing an assisted suicide, while being in exile in England, in the verge of World War II. Jung died tormented and hopeless in the 1960s.
The performances in this film were brilliant. Keira Knightley made a great performance as the hysteric Sabina Spielrein and Viggo Mortensen made a very credible Freud personification, smoking tobacco and a jewish-nose included. The scenery was beautiful and served as background to the early 20th century setting. Cronenberg added another good film to his prolific and versatile repertoire. If "A history of Violence" and "Eastern Promises" (in both films Mortensen was the lead) were violent and gory as his earlier work, this witty flick puts him in the list of the greatest North American auteur filmmakers without a doubt. 8/10 stars.
Melancholia is the newest film by danish auteur filmmaker Lars von Trier. Starring are Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Keifer Sutherland, Alexander Skarsgard (Eric from True Blood), Charlotte Rampling and John Hurt.
The story evolves around Justine (Dunst) who is getting married to Michael (Skarsgard), in a larger-than-life wedding paid by her wealthy brother-in-law John (Sutherland), who is married to Justine's sister Claire (Gainsbourg). Justine's relationship with Claire is not the best. Also their parents, Gaby (Rampling) and Dexter (Hurt), hate each other. After several events during wedding day, Justine ends up living at her sister's mansion. They wait there for Melancholia, a strange planet about to collide with Earth, and everything will change forever.
Lars von Trier tells the story in two different parts. 1st part is Justine's wedding day and 2nd part is Claire's family life at the mansion. Both of them are part of the end of the world story of Melancholia hitting planet Earth.
The camera shots are very reminiscent of his Dogme 95 days. They follow the characters with no apparent purpose as the actors wander through the gorgeous and iconic settings. As the story comes to an end, all the shots made perfect sense. The photography and editing are very interesting as well as strange, but serve the purpose of telling the unconventional story, just as prior's von Trier films.
Dunst performance is her best seen so far. She won the Best Actress Award at the 64th Cannes Film Festival. She also sounds for at least, an Oscar nomination. This isn't for baring all her clothes but for the dramatic scenes that compose her interpretation of a depressed and confused Justine.
Mexican indie pop icon, Julieta Venegas, played at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, CA. We made a 2 hour road trip from Los Angeles with our good friends Carlos and Zoey to watch some catchy pop tunes sung in Spanish.
This convention center had several events at the same time (like Disney on Ice) but our venue was a medium-sized theater with seats. It was kind of empty but Julieta's performance was well worth it. She was accompanied by 6 all-around musicians (two kick ass chicks included) who changed guitars, keyboards, trumpets and other instruments between themselves.
They delivered a very warm and intimate set which reminded me of Belle and Sebastian's DC gig back in Oct 2010. The comparison came to my mind because it was a lot of musicians and instruments on-stage delivering beautiful music. The difference was that it was done with a very mexican flavor to it. In addition, the drummer played with only one stick during the entire set, which was very cool. The interaction between the band and the public was very good.
Julieta sang hits such as Canciones de Amor, Eres para mí (in which she rapped Anita Tijoux's verses), Lento, Amores Perros Me Van A Matar (from the classic Iñarritu film soundtrack), Debajo de mi lengua, Me Voy, Ya Conocerán (which she announced will have a music video soon), Algo Está Cambiando and a cover of La Jaula de Oro by Los Tigres del Norte.
After an hour and a half, the band left the stage but returned to sang their last three songs Revolución, Sin Documentos and Andar Conmigo. Overall it was a great show, full of her hits. Even though it was a very small audience, Julieta and his backing band played with tons of energy. Definitely would see Julieta Venegas again but never going back to Korn's hometown.
FYFZ #4: 36 pages with interviews to Groovie Ghoulies (SF) and The Panty Sniffers (Puerto Rico). Comic Book Villains: R.Crumb, Spanish Rock Pioneers: Hombres G, Serial Killers: Ted Bundy, Spot Check: Teahupoo, No Friends, Como Nena (sk8) and Puerto Rican Hip Hop articles. Show Reviews, Music Reviews and much more.
FYFZ #3: 40 pages with interviews to JFA (Phoenix), Toys That Kill (San Pedro) and Necro-Nazis (Puerto Rico). Comic Book Villains: Jhonen Vasquez, Punk Pioneers: Rhino 39, Serial Killers: Jeffrey Dahmer, Essay on The Iluminatis, The Dogtown and Z Boys, Punk Rock in Cuba, Show Reviews, Music Reviews and much more.
FYFZ #2: 40 pages with interviews to D.I. (Orange County), Lunachicks (New York), Anti Sociales (Puerto Rico), Essays about Nazism in punk history, Punk in the Dominican Republic, Punk Rock College Board, Punk Pioneers:The Lewd, Serial Killers: John Wayne Gacy, Show Reviews, Music Reviews, Movie Reviews and much more.
FYFZ #1: 32 pages with interviews to Blind Pigs (Brazil), The Queers (New Hampshire), P.A. Scouts (Puerto Rico), Essays about Religion and Punk in California, Games, Music Reviews, Show Reviews, Movie Reviews, Scenester's Faves and much more.
Forgotten Youth Video Distro
Hundreds of Old School Punk/HC Videos from 1960s-1990s from around the world. Tade and Sell. 1999-2007. Artwork by MOD.
The Panty Sniffers: Bass and Vocals from 2001-2004; Lead Vocals from 2004-2007. First and Only Full Length CD called "SSR". RokiRol Records.
Los Pepiniyoz: Bass Player from January 2002 to April 2003.
El Fantastico Zine Vol.1 (Oct. 1998): 32 pages about sk8, punk music, bodyboarding and teenage jokes. Included interview with infamous Deep River pop-punk legends, Toy Gun. Out of Print.
El Fantastico Zine Vol.2 (December 1998): 36 pages about the same things as the first edition. Included interviews with two legendary west side punk rock bands, Kabezudos de Villa Bajo and Alfalfa y los Kretinos. Out of Print.
El Fantastico Zine Vol. 3 (Feb. 1999): 36 pages and an interview to Arecibo's skacore legends, Viuda Negra. Unreleased.