Soft-rock legends, soft-rock enthusiasts and no less than two Lou Reed cover bands. All this and more in a week of music in the Bay Area

 

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Film Review: Foxcatcher

by Carrie Kahn on November 21, 2014

Carell’s performance is main event in otherwise slow wrestling movie

John du Pont (Steve Carell) gives wrestler Mark Schultz (Channing Tatum) an earful.

Director Bennett Miller returns to the big screen this month with Foxcatcher, his first feature since 2011’s Moneyball. Like that film, Foxcatcher also draws its inspiration from a true-life sports story, but, ultimately, Foxcatcher is really more of a psychological character study. While it’s a compelling look at descending madness, the film proves itself a rather static, chilly narrative, albeit one with some exceptionally strong performances.

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Appearing Sunday at Slim's

Appearing Sunday at Slim’s.

This week ’round the bay we have: The English! Death! Art on stage! And literary references! Exclamation maaarks! Get out there and see a show!

Here’s what’s coming up this week.

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Better late than never?  Maybe not this time.

Harry and Lloyd ride again!

Harry and Lloyd ride again!

Why is Dumb and Dumber To disappointing?… Is it because the new movie has six writers instead of three like the original?  Is it because the 90’s style of humor just isn’t funny anymore?  Or is it that Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels just don’t carry the same onscreen charm they did twenty years ago?  None of the above (well, maybe the first one).  The best aspect of Dumb and Dumber To, the highly anticipated (and worry-inducing) sequel to the Farrelly brothers’ classic side-splitting 1994 comedy, is seeing the Carrey-Daniels duo back on screen together.  The worst aspect is that Peter and Bob Farrelly lost sight of their own character creations, making them more mean-spirited now rather than the lovable dimwits they were before.  Dumb and Dumber To isn’t without its funny moments, and there are a few nuggets, but twenty years should have yielded a more loyal and clever return to the world of Harry and Lloyd.

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garth2Yes. You read that right. At approximately 4:30 PM on the 11th of November, Garth Brooks tweets this: “SURPRISE! Meet me @IndySF at 5:30 pm for a free #ManAgainstMachine listening party (Yes, really!) -love, g”.  It’s one of his very first tweets. I also had no idea what this really means. I mean, he’s one of the biggest stars in the history of popular music. When he tours, he does residencies at arenas. Even if it’s really just him sitting on a stool playing a CD of new songs, this is huge.

So I abruptly left work.

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Film Review: Big Hero 6

by Gordon Elgart on November 7, 2014

I dare you not to buy an action figure or stuffed toy within the next 48 hours after seeing this film.

Before saying what Big Hero 6 is, let’s start with what it’s not. It’s not the 6th movie in a series; it’s the beginning of a new one. It’s not a Pixar movie, but John Lasseter’s involvement in it is evident from both the quality of animation and the thought put into the characters. It’s not a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, even though it’s based — loosely — on a Marvel comic book. It’s not necessarily a kids’ movie, although the ready-for-the-toy-store robot BayMax is going to appeal to kids … of all ages. Finally, it doesn’t take place in San Francisco; rather, in San Fransokyo. What’s that, you say?

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Film Review: Interstellar

November 7, 2014
www.youtube.com/watch?v=0vxOhd4qlnA

A space opera.  A sci-fi blockbuster.  A heavy hitter.  Just enjoy the ride. *NOTICE:  Many people have tried tirelessly to avoid exposure to any spoilers or plot details (or anything, really) regarding Interstellar.  I found it hard to write about Interstellar without mentioning ‘anything, really’, so be forewarned*

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Spinning Platters Weekly Guide to Bay Area Concerts: 11/6/14-11/12/14

November 6, 2014

Post-Election Day we have a panoply of excellent concerts coming to The Bay Area this week. Shows of all kinds. We have shows that are avenging! And dance-y! Secretive! And lemony! Metal! And even including the magic of public transportation. It’s wonderful that there are so many kinds of shows ’round here and so many […]

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Show Review: Erasure at Fox Theater Oakland

November 4, 2014

Reading up on Erasure, before they performed to a sold out crowd at Oakland’s Fox Theater this past Saturday night, I discovered that they didn’t really break through into the mainstream’s consciousness until their third album was released in 1988. Could you imagine such a scenario in today’s modern-day music industry? Luckily, Mute and Sire […]

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Treasure Island Festival Diary 2014, Day 2

October 24, 2014

I love a good music festival. Especially one where you can bask in the sun in October. It was another gorgeous day on the island. With even better music than the day before, if you could possibly believe that.

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