June 2005 Archives

If you ever engage Carl Finch in a discussion about the health or politics of polka, watch out. And do not make any polka jokes. The singer/guitarist/accordionist/keyboardist for the Texas-based band Brave Combo is passionate about his polka, and he can work himself up into such a froth that you might mistake his tone for anger.

The Phantom Nuance

The troubles with Revenge of the Sith are large: conception, narrative arc, tone, and pacing, all related to a failure by George Lucas to acknowledge what, exactly, the prequels represent, and to shape the material accordingly. And the raw materials of the movies suggest a startlingly detailed, mature, and nuanced vision, not just a popcorn space opera.

Ah, movies about child molesters. Why oh why aren’t there more of them? Probably for the same reason that there aren’t more films about obviously guilty people on death row: because under the cover of trying to illuminate serious social issues they’re naked attempts to humanize rightfully demonized people. The Woodsman doesn’t escape that trap entirely, but it’s surprisingly suspenseful with a strong set of characters.