Friday, November 17, 2017

Casa Video Top 10

Posted By on Fri, Nov 17, 2017 at 3:48 PM

The next week should be a busy one. Between trying to avoid the El Tour de Tucson route, hanging out with (or protesting against) Steve Bannon—and maybe his local, exclamation point-loving brother—and everything else this sunny city has to offer right now, I can't image anyone is going to have much time to hang out at home and watch movies with their cats.

... but just in case you do manage to squeeze in a few low key hours at home, here are the top 10 rentals at Casa Video right now:

The Dark Tower

Wonder Woman

War for the Planet of the Apes

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Laughing Stock: The People's Pervert Does Christmas

Posted By on Fri, Nov 17, 2017 at 10:16 AM

John Waters brings his new Christmas show to the Rialto Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 2. - PHOTO BY GREG GORMAN
  • Photo by Greg Gorman
  • John Waters brings his new Christmas show to the Rialto Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 2.

“I'm busier in my career than I have ever been in my entire life,” says Baltimore septuagenarian John Waters, the author, stand-up comedian, satirist, paradigm smasher, movie auteur and, not least, his hometown’s Statue of Liberty. He styles himself as “The People’s Pervert.”

Waters brings his annual, one-man Christmas show to the Rialto Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 2. Tickets are $30 to $110 at rialtotheatre.com. The show’s parental advisory portends laughs guaranteed to up-end taste, decorum and firmly held beliefs of all kinds.

“I just want people to fear Christmas. It's extreme! It's coming and you can't escape it, no matter what religion you are or what your politics are or anything. You have to have an opinion about it. You have to spend money!”

Just in time, Make Trouble, Waters’ 2015 commencement speech to the Rhode Island School of Design has been released in limited edition, 7” red vinyl by Jack White’s label, Third Man. The speech earlier went viral online, then became an illustrated gift book published by Algonquin.

“I've lived my life to be a stocking stuffer!”

The joke is that he devotes his Christmas show to subverting the season’s excesses. He works up to the minute on timely content for each performance, writing with hilarious and pan-themic irreverence for the season’s tropes. Regarding dangerous toy lists, e.g.: “My friend used to give her daughter plastic bags to play with from the cleaner, and the child loved it. ‘You just watch them,’ she said. You have to watch your children.”

When he’s not touring, Waters’ days are filled with other creative pursuits and live appearances. He has made a dozen movies and published nearly as many books but, like the commencement speech, he says, “I love to get all my work re-invented all the time.” He notes that his 1970 film Multiple Maniacs came out again this year, restored by the Criterion Collection—another stocking-stuffer alert.

Waters’ career would have made history had it ended with his 1972 film, Pink Flamingos. That movie, his second, at once defined and subverted the exploitation genre. His Hairspray has been a megahit in every medium, from the Broadway stage to children’s books and multiple internet sites. While the HBO sequel hasn’t yet been financed, it’s written, and production may be inevitable.

“I'm still participating in that business,” Waters says. “Hollywood's been fair to me. My movies satirized all the things that used to be in movies. But I don't really satirize special effects.”


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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Facebook-Free Friday

Posted By on Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 3:18 PM

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I enjoy Facebook. I really do. I find myself there every day I'm near a computer, usually many times a day. I very much enjoy watching the children of young families (and I'm of an age when most families are young) growing up. I also enjoy mixing it up with smart people who keep me and everyone else honest, until ad hominem attacks start flying, that is, at which time I leave the scene. I like putting my Range posts up so people who don't visit the Weekly site regularly can link to what I'm writing if they're interested. I can do without the "This is what I'm eating" and "This is what I look like an hour after the last time I showed you what I looked like" posts. I scroll past those quickly. No harm, no foul.

But Facebook is also a stinking cesspool of misinformation and propaganda. No matter your political or social viewpoint, you'll find posts designed to make you hate others who are on the other side of an issue, and even hate people who don't care about it quite as passionately as you do. Evil forces did everything they could to use Facebook to undermine our last elections, with the Russian government leading the way. Today we learned Britain's Brexit vote was most likely tainted by the same hands in the same way, which lots of us suspected already. And Zuckerberg & Co. aren't doing a whole lot to fix things.

There's not much I can do to change Facebook. I can protest by taking my page down and exiting the virtual gathering place entirely, but that wouldn't accomplish much of anything except rob me of a little bit of pleasure. So I've decided to make a token protest. I have declared every Friday will be Facebook-Free Friday. Nobody cares that I won't be hanging around Friday, least of all Mark Zuckerberg. But I have a feeling, if Zuckerberg saw his numbers drop dramatically Friday as part of a one-day-a-week boycott, he'd make an effort to fix the problems driving people away. He's no fool. He understands his empire is built on people showing up. If they decide to leave en masse, he's got nothing.

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Lil Peep Passes Away Before Show at The Rock

Posted By on Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 1:22 PM

New York native Gustav Ahr, better known by his alias "Little Peep" passed away in Tucson on Wednesday night at the age of 21. - PINTEREST
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  • New York native Gustav Ahr, better known by his alias "Little Peep" passed away in Tucson on Wednesday night at the age of 21.


The rap genre lost one of its up-and-coming artists on Wednesday.

Fast-rising rap artist Gustav Ahr, or "Lil Peep" passed away before his show on Wednesday night at The Rock, with the exact cause of his death still under investigation.

The 21-year-old New York artist was pronounced dead at 9 p.m., according to the county's medical examiner, with The New York Times reporting that the rapper died from overdosing on the anti-anxiety medication, Xanax.

Lil Peep was best known for his songs "White Wine," "Benz Truck," and "The Way I see Things," which have gone viral on YouTube, with upwards of 12 million views per track.

Ahr was born on Nov. 1, 1996, and took to recording tracks after dropping out of high school, making music through online sites like SoundCloud and YouTube.

He released his first mixtape, Lil Peep Part One, in 2015—with his debut album,. Come Over When You're Sober released on June 2.

Ahr was known for the multi-instrumental aspect of his work, playing trombone and tuba on many of his tracks, and frequently described the close relationship he had with his mother, Liza, in many of his songs.

In all, Ahr released four mixtapes, one album and six EPs in his brief career, having been described as "The future of emo," by music magazine Pitchfork.

The Weekly List: 25 Things To Do In Tucson This Week

Posted By and on Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 10:00 AM

Your Weekly guide to keeping busy in the Old Pueblo.

Music

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2017 International Tucson Guitar Festival. The guitar is one of those things that allows space for infinite improvement: You can practice for years and still only beginning to unlock your potential, because there are just that many possibilities. But the world-class guitarists coming to this event will blow you away with what looks and sounds a whole lot like mastery. Three-time Grammy Award nominee Berta Rojas performs at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 18 and Grammy Award winning composer/guitarist Sérgio Assad and Grammy Award nominated pianist/vocalist Clarics Assad perform at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19. Cuban guitarrista Iliana Matos opens the festival at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 11 and the Beeston competition is at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 12. Holsclaw Hall, Fred Fox School of Music, 1017 N. Olive Road. Ticket prices vary.

A Celebration of Joni Mitchell with Kimberly Ford. It goes without saying that every day is a celebration of Joni Mitchell in its own way, or at least it should be. But treat yourself to an evening jam-packed with Joni by seeing this six-piece SoCal based band headed by Kimberly Ford on vocals. Let Kimberly and Joni remind you that we’re all stardust, and that sometimes sadness, when sung about in just the right way, can be overwhelmingly beautiful. 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 17. Gaslight Music Hall of Oro Valley, 13005 N. Oracle Road, No. 165. $25.

April Verch Band: Canada’s Finest Fiddle & Stepdancer. Not many adults are doing the same things today that they were doing when they were 3, or 6 and a half. But those are the ages at which April Verch learned to stepdance and fiddle, respectively, and she’s been steppin’ and fiddlin’ away ever since. Also, she sings. And sometimes she does all three at once. She fiddled at the 2010 Olympic games, she’s fiddled in Vienna Austria, and she’s fiddled her way onto the pages of Rolling Stone magazine. Now, it’s time to let her fiddle, stepdance and fiddle her way into your heart. With Matt & Bekah Rolland of Run Boy Run. 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 19. Monterey Court, 505 W. Miracle Mile, Tucson. $15.

The Spirit of Argentina. They move quickly, dramatically and sensually, to the music composed by some of the most legendary figures in the world of tango. They are Tango Buenos Aires, known internationally as one of the most talented and authentic Tango dancers in the world. Contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t take two to tango. It takes a whole expert company of musicians, vocalists and dancers to bring you the cultural experience of a lifetime. (And don’t worry. You don’t have to tango.) 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 21. Fox Theatre, 17 W. Congress. $24 to $39.

Shopping

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Made in Tucson Market. They say home is where the art is, and at this festival, you can find art and goods from dozens of vendors who make their goods locally. And while you’re picking up art prints, candles, jewelry, ceramics, kitchen supplies and other Tucson-made treats, you can chat with the artists (all of whom are Tucson residents) and learn about their processes. How sweet it is to stock up on holiday gifts, treat yourself and support local artists all at once. 10 a.m. to dusk. Saturday, Nov. 18. On Seventh Street between Fourth and Fifth Avenues. Free.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Quick Bites: Bacon, Chili and Pie

Posted By and on Wed, Nov 15, 2017 at 1:00 PM

What to Eat with What You Drink. Don’t understand wine pairings, or wine in general? Hey, same here. Well, here’s your opportunity to get a little more cultured. Dive in with Tana at Sand-Reckoner Vineyards, and find out what food tastes best with what wine. Unlock the mysteries of wine and maybe, for once, drink it because you enjoy it, not just to get drunk.
5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Nov. 16. 510 N Seventh Ave, Unit 170. $27

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Fifth Annual Arizona Bacon Fest. Did you know eating bacon actually makes you lose weight? Well, that’s not true, but you might feel like flying after having an awesome time at the fifth annual Arizona Bacon Fest. Tucson’s best chefs converge for one day to make some of the tastiest plates, and they all include bacon! And if you thought there wasn’t going to be beer, congratulations: you just proved you’ve never been to this festival before, so now you have no excuse not to come. In addition to craft beers, there will be live music and NFL games. Honestly, what more could you ask for? 2 p.m on Sunday, Nov. 19. At 260 S. Church Ave. $38. Purchase tickets beforehand.

Chili Cook Off and Car Show. Yes, you read that title right. The only thing hotter than the homemade chili will be the cars, trucks and motorcycles. Once the car show and chili tasting are finished, it’s time for the awards. So whether you want to eat, hang out, or battle it out for the chili bragging rights, this is your place. And if none of that has convinced you, there’s also a swap meet! What won’t be taking place there? 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Nov. 19. Fred’s Arena Bar and Steakhouse. 9650 S Avra Road. Free entry.

Pints & Poses. If you have trouble maintaining your balance and poise while doing yoga, try adding beer to the mix. How would that help? Good question, it actually comes after the yoga as a reward. Pueblo Vida Brewing seems to have it all worked out for you. Do yoga and then once you’re tired and zen, get even more centered with their find craft beers. Say namaste and drink away. 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19. 115 E Broadway Blvd. $5 /21+

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Pie Exchange. One pie enters, one pie leaves! (Or three, if you’re feeling ambitious.) Desert Dove Chapel is hosting a magical event to really bring the community together in harmony. Show up with a pie of your own and trade it for a totally new one. If your tastebuds are feeling adventurous, be sure to check this out. (Please, no store-bought pies.)
Tuesday, Nov. 21 at 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Desert Dove Chapel, 5385 E. Ironwood St.

Deer Tick Blows the Roof Off at 191 Toole

Posted By on Wed, Nov 15, 2017 at 11:00 AM

Deer Tick lead guitarist Ian O'Neil, left, and singer John McCauley perform the first of two sets at 191 Toole on Monday night. - CHRISTOPHER BOAN | TUCSON WEEKLY
  • Christopher Boan | Tucson Weekly
  • Deer Tick lead guitarist Ian O'Neil, left, and singer John McCauley perform the first of two sets at 191 Toole on Monday night.

It was a night to remember inside a half-packed 191 Toole on Monday night, as college rock favorites Deer Tick shredded through a two-set masterpiece.

The Providence, Rhode Island-based quintet—touring in support of their new double EP (Deer Tick Vol. 1 and Vol. 2)—brought their typical punch-drunk energy to the Old Pueblo, blasting through two sets of music, as part of their Twice is Nice Tour, to the small but thoroughly energized contingent.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the night though came not from the band itself, however, but in the dry whit and charm put forth by standup comic Solomon Georgio.

Georgio's opening set revolved was a self-effacing monologue about the struggles of growing up as a gay man in a immigrant family, hailing from Ethiopia, mixed in with stories about his personal life.

His routine drew wild applause and laughs from the crowd, before yielding the stage to the main act—who started the evening with an all-acoustic set.

The band tore through their first set, playing a mixture of new songs from Vol. 1 and peyote and whiskey-soaked classics, from albums of yole.

Singer John McCauley bounced between his stool and the keyboard nestled into the far-righthand corner of the stage in the opening set, providing the dulcet tones that we've come to love over the years.

The band was tight all night, wasting no time between songs, and making the most of their time on stage, hitting all the high notes and low-tempo valleys in-between.

A new perspective

It was my first time seeing the band in five years—since seeing them shortly after the release of Divine Providence—a college radio favorite full of songs about drunken debauchery and youthful dumbassery.

That show, in which Deer Tick was the opening act for Athens, Georgia heavyweights The Drive-By Truckers, had a completely different vibe—with McCauley and company toeing the line between drunken discord and beautiful harmony, with several screw-ups in between.

There were no such mishaps Monday, showing the strides the band has taken in its maturation since that night a half-decade ago in Washington D.C.

Leaving on a high-note

It's clear that this iteration of the band is much more focused on music, and less on the self-destruction they were known for during the War Elephant and Black Dirt Sessions albums of a decade or so ago.

It's all the better, to be honest, as they performed at a meteoric level on Monday, leaving the crowd in a sober stupor, after an electrified second set that hit on a lot of the band's greatest hits.
Perhaps the highlight of the night for me was hearing them play an old-time classic, "Baltimore Blues No. 2," from War Elephant, that I used to play the cover off of when I was a college radio DJ in Fort Collins.

That song, about my de facto hometown (I was born in Annapolis, Maryland), was wonderfully performed on Monday, with McCauley hitting his notes perfectly, as a chorus of imitators lovingly belted out the lyrics in the peanut gallery.

The final song of the night, fittingly enough, was a tongue-in-cheek rendition of Joe Cocker's "You are So Beautiful," a fitting end for an awesome night of rock music.

It was a beautiful night for jangly guitars and raw energy—it was a perfect rock and roll night in the Old Pueblo.

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Cinema Clips: Thor: Ragnarok

Posted By on Wed, Nov 15, 2017 at 9:48 AM


Somebody was smoking some laced wild shit and licking frogs when they put together Thor: Ragnarok, a film so nutty it easily surpasses the Guardians of the Galaxy films as the screwiest offering in the Marvel universe.

When you hand the keys to the Thor franchise over to a director like Taika Waititi, you know you are going to get something bizarre, and Waititi doesn’t disappoint. Waititi is the New Zealand comic actor/director responsible for the hilarious vampire faux documentary What We Do in the Shadows and the funny family drama Hunt for the Wilderpeople. There’s really nothing on his resume that screams, “Hey, let’s have this guy direct an action-packed, highly expensive Thor film!” But he got the gig, so there you go. Sometimes the wild card pays off.

Borrowing from a host of Marvel comics, including the famed “Planet Hulk” storyline, the hallucinogenic plot drops Thor (Chris Hemsworth) on a crazy garbage planet bent on round-the-clock, violent entertainment and led by Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum, finally getting a high-profile role worthy of him outside of a Wes Anderson film). The Grandmaster cuts Thor’s hair, dresses him in gladiator gear, and throws him into the ring for a weaponized bout with his prized competitor. That prized competitor is the Hulk, held captive on the planet for the past couple of years. He’s been nothing but the Hulk the whole time, with Dr. Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) trapped inside him.

Thor and Hulk have a battle royale for the ages, followed by some great scenes where the Hulk actually speaks. Ruffalo provides the voice, and this is the first time in the recent Marvel films where Lou Ferrigno isn’t providing Hulk’s growls. There’s a whole other apocalyptic subplot going on, where Thor’s long-lost sister Hela (a striking and devilish Cate Blanchett decked out in black) is causing major havoc on his home planet of Asgard. Blanchett immediately sets herself high in the ranking of Marvel movie villains. She’s played a baddie before, but never this entertainingly.

Staff Pick

PCC Theatre Arts - Popol Vuh: The Story of Seven Macaw

. November 9-19 in the Center for the Arts Black Box Theatre (Thu.-Sat. at 7:30 p.m., Sun.… More

@ Pima Community College Center for the Arts Thursdays, Sundays, 2-4 p.m. and Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30-9:30 p.m. Continues through Nov. 19 2202 W. Anklam Road.

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