Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Star Wars / Dallas opening

Few things bring more joy to me than when You Tube and Star Wars get together. Enjoy.

-Billy Gay

Sunday, March 29, 2009

5 Most Anticipated Films of 2009

"The Fantastic Mr. Fox" – 20th Century Fox - Dir. Wes Anderson
Synopsis: A family of foxes try to outsmart a group of farmers who are trying to wipe them out for eating their livestock.
What You Need To Know: Wes Anderson takes a creative left turn into the world of stop-motion animation with an adaptation of the delightful Roald Dahl kids novel, and brings along old friends to do the voices (Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman, Anjelica Huston), plus adds a few new ones to the fold, too (George Clooney). Co-written with filmmaker Noah Baumbach ('Life Aquatic') and with songs being written by Jarvis cocker (Pulp), this kid-friendly flick could turn out to be the highest grossing one of Anderson's career.
Release Date: November 6, 2009

"The Tree of Life" – Summit Entertainment - Dir. Terrence Malick
Synopsis: The story of a family who must come to terms with a devastating loss. In doing so, they discover life's most important lessons of unselfish love and forgiveness.
What You Need To Know: Malick is back again as writer and director with this long-gestating project of over 30 years. He has reunited with Cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki and legendary Production Designer Jack Fisk, the same team who brought us "The New World" in 2006. The epic traces the evolution of an eleven-year-old boy named Jack growing up in the midwest during the 1950's. Sean Penn plays the adult Jack while Brad Pitt, in a role originally intended for Heath Ledger, plays the boy's father. Jessica Chastain (pictured) plays the mother, with Fiona Shaw and Jennifer Sipes also starring. Given Malick's track record of making meditative, naturalistic, and down right stunning films, one can assume that we'll have plenty to admire with this one. The composer of 'Benjamin Button’ is also writing the music.
Release Date: Fall 2009.

"Inglourious Basterds" – Weinsteins/Universal - Dir. Quentin Tarantino
Synopsis: An elite team of Jewish American soldiers in WWII take on a covert mission to kill Adolf Hitler, but unbeknownst to them, the daughter of a slain French farmer is planning her own revenge.
What You Need To Know: Tarantino's war film is epic and could be one of the most outrageous WWII films ever made, not to mention his possible masterpiece, if he doesn't fuck up his brilliant and audacious script. Pitt leads an eclectic, motley crue cast that features many foreign newcomers (Melanie Laurent, Jacky Ido, Christoph Waltz), old school actors (Cloris Leachmen, Rod Taylor), American comedians (BJ Novak, Samm Levine) and bold faced names (Diane Kruger, Mike Meyers) many, many others.
Release Date: August 21, 2009. It could show up at Cannes if completed in time.

"Where The Wild Things Are" - Warner Bros. - Dir. Spike Jonze
The long-awaited adaptation of Maurice Sendak's beloved children's novel might be the most highly anticipated film of all of 2009 and perhaps the most discussed and poured over. Starring 9-year-old newcomer Max Records and voiced by James Gandolfini, Lauren Ambrose, Catherine O'Hara and Forest Whitaker among others, the 'Wild Things' film, co-written by author Dave Eggers, had an extremely difficult and tempestuous birth, the battles of which spilled out into the public. Taking three years to make (not counting pre-production), an early 2008 test screening was so controversial, rumors swirled the film was going to be recut and or taken away from Jonze. The gossip turned out to be semi-true, but WB and the filmmaker got over their quarrel and the melancholy children's film could potentially be destined to become a classic. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah's singer Karen O is on music.

Release Date: October 16th, 2009

"The Limits of Control" – Focus Features - Dir. Jim Jarmusch
Synopsis: The story of a mysterious loner who operates outside the law in Spain.
What You Need To Know: In typical Jim Jarmusch fashion, his next project is flying pretty under the radar. However, the film stars Jarmusch favorites Isaach De Bankolé, Bill Murray, and Tilda Swinton. John Hurt and Gael García Bernal are also involved. Shooting in Spain - Seville, Madrid, and Almeria, specifically celebrated cinematographer Christopher Doyle lenses, and the the title may or may not have a connection to a William Burroughs' essay. An indie rockstar, Jarmusch's work is thoroughly uncompromising, understated and postmodern cool. Expect more plot information to surface as the film gets a release date. Nothing yet, but Jarmusch has a history at Cannes and this sounds like a festival release all the way.
Release Date: May 22, 2009 (limited)

Honorable Mentions:

"Bad Lieutenant: Port of New Orleans" – N/A - Dir.
Werner Herzog
Werner Herzog and Nicolas Cage finally team up.
"A Serious Man" – Focus Features - Dir. Coen Brothers
: A Midwestern professor in 1967 watches his life unravel when his wife prepares to leave him because his inept brother won't move out of the house.
"The Hurt Locker" – Summit Entertainment- Dir. Kathryn Bigelow
Synopsis: An intense Iraq war drama that borders on action film, it focuses on an elite Army bomb squad unit defusing explosives in the middle of the chaos.
"Public Enemies" – Universal - Dir. Michael Mann
Synopsis: Notorious American gangsters John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson and Pretty Boy Floyd, take on the Feds in the 1930s.
"The Road" – Weinstein Company - Dir. John Hillcoat
Synopsis: A father and son try to survive a post apocalyptic world full of desperate scavengers and day-of-reckoning cannibals.
"Adventureland" – Miramax - Dir. Greg Mottola

Synopsis: On the verge of college, an erudite middle class teenager has to trade in his European summer dreams for a soul-crushing job at an Adventureland in Long Island.
"Broken Embraces" - Sony Pictures Classics - Pedro Almodovar
Synopsis: A four-person love story that "touches on many genres," including thriller.

There are plenty of high profile and independent films this year that look spectacular. Please let us know what your top five are!!!

-Billy Gay Cyrus

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Now following....

Added Kotaku and Consumerist to the side bar. Check 'em out.----DJ Bullfrog

Have you seen image dump?


Cool site full of some amazing images, all of it selected by a 19 year old Dutch teen named Marco Kuiper. Found this via Metafilter. Enjoy.

What's Your Favorite Comedy?

I thought the best way to remedy the crappy weather outside was to watch The Jerk. I like hearing people laugh, and I love it when I realize there's kids in the store right when he's talking about his special purpose. But it seems like whenever I watch this film, I'm always asked to recommend a good comedy, and I've recommended Flirting with Disaster to everyone, so I want to know what your favorite comedies are. Mine usually go unrented (I recommended Duck Soup and Horse Feathers-both of them met that fate). So tell me what you like and why, be it old or new, dry or slapstick.
Little Edie

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Thursday Poem

My favorite blog of all time (Photographer Alec Soth's Blog) stopped being updated years ago, but I often return to its archives to bask in the awesomeness it once was. One of the best recurring posts was his Friday Poem. I'm terribly unfamiliar with poetry and am quite positive I can't tell the difference between good and bad poetry, but I do respect the art and hope to become slightly more familiar with it. So, since Alec is off raising a family and taking spectacular photographs (click here), I am going to attempt to reintroduce myself into the world of poetry with a weekly "Thursday Poem". We'll start off with a native son of Kansas city, James Tate. Tate was first introduced to me by my friend Chris Nelson (he has a great weekly newsletter aptly entitled This Week In Nelson), and I actually own a few of his collections of poetry. His poems are kind of surreal.

Yeah Buddy!

-Billy Gay Cyrus

The Motorcyclists
by James Tate

My cuticles are a mess. Oh honey, by the way,
did you like my new negligee? It’s a replica
of one Kim Novak wore in some movie or other.
I wish I had a foot-long chili dog right now.
Do you like fireworks, I mean not just on the 4th of July,
but fireworks any time? There are people
like that, you know. They’re like people who like
orchestra music, listen to it any time of day.
Lopsided people, that’s what my father calls them.
Me, I’m easy to please. I like ping-pong and bobcats,
shatterproof drinking glasses, the smell of kerosene,
the crunch of carrots. I like caterpillars and
whirlpools, too. What I hate most is being the first
one at the scene of a bad accident.

Do I smell like garlic? Are we still in Kansas?
I once had a chiropractor make a pass at me,
did I ever tell you that? He said that your spine
is happiest when you’re snuggling. Sounds kind
of sweet now when I tell you, but he was a creep.
Do you know that I have never understood what they meant
by “grassy knoll.” It sounds so idyllic, a place to go
to dream your life away, not kill somebody. They
should have called it something like “the grudging notch.”
But I guess that’s life. What is it they always say?
“It’s always the sweetest ones that break your heart.”
You getting hungry yet, hon? I am. When I was seven
I sat in our field and ate an entire eggplant
right off the vine. Dad loves to tell that story,

but I still can’t eat eggplant. He says I’ll be the first
woman President, it’d be a waste since I talk so much.
Which do you think the fixtures are in the bathroom
at the White House, gold or brass? It’d be okay with me
if they were just brass. Honey, can we stop soon?
I really hate to say it but I need a lady’s room.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

the dempsey's glow!

for anyone who has not had a burger/falalfel burger at dempsey's (7th and vermont st), after eating there you will have what is known as the dempsey's glow. An aura of vitality and spirit which can be visibly seen by others. Shine on, you crazy burger!!

A Minor Work

I'm adding Trees And Things to our list of monitors, running down the side. You should check it out if you want well-written stories on current events, and decent commentary. It's probably the best web site on the internet, when it comes to news and polite discourse. -permazorch

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Liberty Hall: Sanctioning Paranoia Since 1986

Your friends are Cylons and will never return your movies on time because they're going to nuke the planet and in the event that you do survive, you'll be busier listening for the hum of centurions, rather than worrying about a $45 late fee, which you have to pay, because now you really want to watch Let the Right One In, but you'll have to settle for getting Twilight at Hy-Vee, because you trusted your skin job friend to turn in Blade Runner and Son of Rambow. But now there's Cylon civil war and they're too busy killing each other off to worry about us, so you're stuck watching sparkly vampires. All because you trusted too much!!
Turn in your own frakking movies. Trust no one.
So say we all.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Just stupid stuff

Tomorrow's Friday, and Liberty Hall has a new movie opening. I remember when A Scanner Darkly played, and the comment one woman made when she was told that it was animated, "Oh, that's stupid stuff."
Waltz with Bashir is an award-winning documentary. Some would say it is not stupid stuff.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pity me, for I am a fool.

Last night for Let the Right One In! It plays at 9:30PM. See it or be a fool who will only regret the missed opportunity once you witness the movie on some home format. I will forever regret missing Grindhouse on the big screen. Don't be like me.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Two Days Left

Only two more showtimes for Let the Right One In. It plays at 9:30PM, tonight and tomorrow night.
Go see it. No matter how awesome your home theater is (and we do carry it on Blu-ray), nothing compares to reflected light amongst strangers, friends and acquaintances.
I did an informal twitter poll, and the (overwhelming) majority of respondents voted to keep it past tomorrow night, but alas! The movie/live event manager decided to re-install The Reader. It will open on Saturday.
This next week is jammed with live stuff, starting with The Get Up Kids this Friday, Andrew Bird on Monday and Joan Baez on St. Patrick's Day! It is, as the kids used to say, finger-licking good, y'all.

Monday, March 9, 2009

A Limited Time Power Application

What do you think we should have playing next Friday (the 13th)?
a) The Reader
b) Let the Right One In
c) Milk

Rob is gonna choose, "The Reader", unless you say something!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Lightning Bolt: The Power of Salad & Milkshakes

I told you I would eat you!
I could use a good salad and a milkshake.

"For God's Sake! Will you turn off that racket?!"


Well, it wasn't as bad as I feared. Here's my favorite film essayist (critic?) on Watchmen.
It was not as good as Let the Right One In. Come down and watch the latter. It opens tonight, Friday, at 9:30PM, and plays Saturday (tomorrow), March 7th at 11:40PM. For the rest of its limited run (ending Thursday, March 12th) it will only play at 9:30PM.
That's for all the vampires.
I recommend combining a (relatively) cheap can of PBR with tomato juice. You can call it a red, white & blue-blood. That one's for free. Yeah.

No kids allowed in the video-store! We're testing The Edge of Heaven, and it's sexy. Some would say, too sexy for the lunch hour.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Liberty Hall Cinema: The Rumor Mill

So these dates are all subject to change, but here's what we've heard from our movie booker:

-Let the Right One In opens Friday, March 6th. It comes out on DVD this month, so we most likely will just hold onto it for a week. It will be splitting screens with MILK. Dubbed the "Anti-Twilight" we couldn't be more excited to pick-up this Swedish vampire film, even if only for seven days. CATCH IT WHILE IT'S HERE!!!!

-Waltz With Bashir opens March 20th. This is an animated documentary that was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar this year. We are all very excited for this innovative documentary.

-The Class opens April 4th. Teacher and novelist François Bégaudeau plays a version of himself as he negotiates a year with his racially mixed students from a tough Parisian neighborhood. Another Foreign Language Film Oscar nominee and winner of the Cannes Film Fest's Golden Palm award, this one is sure to kick your ass.

-Two Lovers opens March 27th. Joaquin Phoenix's swan song.

-Che (Part 1 and Part 2) is on our radar, but it's pretty unlikely that we'll pick up a 4hr 30min movie. It's at the Tivoli for a limited run, I highly suggest you catch it there.

That's all I can tell you for now. We are holding onto Slumdog for several more weeks, and MILK will stick around through March 12th. Call the Box Office at 749-1972 with questions, or the movie line at 749-1912 for showtimes.

Friends Forever,
Bill Gay Cyrus