Music: Brazilian melodies from Sambeleza Fri., May 6, at 8 PM

Sambeleza_BV_012815_02_WebSambeleza plays Best Video Performance Space on Friday, May 6. The music starts at 8 PM and the cover is $5.

Sambeleza—featuring Isabella Mendes, Jeff Fuller, Joe Carter and Joe Murfin—performs a wide variety of Brazilian songs, both old and new, with a jazz twist. Featured composers include Tom Jobim and Ary Barroso, as well as younger composers like Djavan, Debora Gurgel and Arlindo Cruz. A few originals by group members are added to the mix.

Their first CD, “Sambeleza Live,” was released in the spring of 2015. It was recorded live at Summer Solstice Samba in June, 2014 at Voices Cafe of the Unitarian Church in Westport in association with WPKN-FM. Along with Sambeleza members Isabella Mendes, Jeff Fuller and Joe Carter on that date were special guests Ali Ryerson (flute), Adriano Santos (drums) and Ze Mauricio (percussion).

Brasil (spelled with an “s” in Portuguese) is well known for its rich heritage—a blend of indigenous, African and European cultures—from which the music has risen with fascinating rhythms, soaring melodies and colorful harmonies. The musicians of Sambeleza are outstanding U. S. and Brazilian interpreters of the great songs of the bossa nova and samba traditions, as well as outstanding jazz artists in their own right. Sambeleza derives its name from two words: samba, the national dance of Brasil, and beleza, Portuguese for “beauty.”

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Sunday, May 1. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Tuesday, May 10. ECLECTIC: DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS, PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, THE HUMAN LIGHT BOX

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, RICHARD NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Saturday, May 14. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, CRETELLA|PAOLUCCI DUO, FLANDREW FLEISENBERG

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, June 24. SOLO GUITAR: GLENN ROTH, ALT-COUNTRY: LINES WEST

• Thursday, June 30. SINGER-SONGWRITER: EUGENE GALLAGHER

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

Music: Walkingwood Mandolin Quartet on Thurs., May 5

Walkingwood_Mandolin_Quartet_BV_081915_WebThe Walkingwood Mandolin Quartet play Best Video Performance Space debut on Thursday, May 5. The show starts at 8 PM and the cover is $5.

The Walkingwood Mandolin Quartet (WMQ) was founded at the turn of the century to apply the quartetto classico version of the mandolin quartet to a completely new repertoire. Whatever your preconceptions are about what a mandolin quartet is like, forget them.

The current and founding, members of WMQ are: Ellen Cohn, mandolin; Colin Healy, mandola; Betsy Rome, mandolin; and Gary Wikfors, mandocello. “Walkingwood” is the name given the home of mandocello player Gary Wikfors.

Gary had acquired a chronic itch to arrange music for mandolin quartet, and eventually a mandocello and mandola to do so. After experimenting with multitrack recordings, Gary felt the need to impose this affliction on some musical friends. Betsy likes to joke that this is the first band she was invited to join by email.

All WMQ members are playing out of their normal elements in this group: Betsy is a well-known flatpick guitarist anchoring the bluegrass-swing quartet “Too Blue,” Colin is a fiddler and multi-instrumentalist at the center of the “Ash Creek String Band,” Ellen is a sought-after accompaniest of traditional Irish and Quebecois tunes on piano and guitar, and Gary usually plays the wee-little mandolin with “The Fiddleheads” and others.

WMQ made its public debut in 1999 at the NOMAD festival in Newtown, CT. Since then, we have played other folk and traditional-music festivals, coffeehouses, concerts, apple orchards and private events.

Their influences? Not classical. Motown, TV themes, surf, O’Carolan, hard rock, traditional Swedish… A common response is “I can’t believe you can play that on mandolins!”

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Sunday, May 1. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Tuesday, May 10. ECLECTIC: DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS, PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, THE HUMAN LIGHT BOX

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Saturday, May 14. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, CRETELLA|PAOLUCCI DUO, FLANDREW FLEISENBERG

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, June 24. SOLO GUITAR: GLENN ROTH, ALT-COUNTRY: LINES WEST

• Thursday, June 30. SINGER-SONGWRITER: EUGENE GALLAGHER

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

Film Screening: Political film series continues with “The Candidate” Mon., May 2, at 7 PM

the_candidate_poster_WebProgrammed in consultation with the League of Women Voters (Hamden-North Haven) and Temple Beth Sholom, the current film series—dubbed “Candidates, Campaigns, and Controversies: Great Political Films”—features clasic films dealing with politics and political issues. “The Candidate” screens this Monday, May 2, at 7 PM. Admission is $7 (free for TBS members).

What happens when an idealistic political candidate enters the sausage-making machine of American politics? Bill McKay, an idealistic legal services attorney played by Robert Redford, finds out in this 1972 comedy-drama. Directed by Michael Ritchie, “The Candidate” was written by Jeremy Larner, a former speechwriter for Sen. Eugene McCarthy’s 1968 insurgent antiwar challenge to Lyndon Johnson.

Writing in the New York Times in 1972, critic Vincent Canby noted, “We all know that men who run for public office hoping only to improve the tone of the campaign, to raise the real issues, usually fail — and look terrible on television, which may be even worse. We suspect that only winning counts, yet we also fondly believe—since we’ve seen it demonstrated often enough—that the system is so corrupt that no good man can win without either being hopelessly corrupted or turned into a bewildered cipher. That pretty well describes what happens to Bill McKay (Robert Redford), the liberal young California Democrat who campaigns for the United States Senate in ‘The Candidate,’ one of the few good, truly funny American political comedies ever made.”

The schedule:

MAY 2: THE CANDIDATE • Idealism: What have you got to lose when you know you can’t win? Or can you? Robert Redford as an earnest young nominee.

MAY 9: FRUITVALE STATION  • One of the most powerfully affecting independent films, starring Michael B. Jordan (Creed) as Oscar Grant, a young Black man shot by the police. Based on true events, up to the minute and unforgettable.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Thursday, Apr. 28. TIN PAN ALLEY: ZAHTIE’S BATHTUB GIN

• Friday, Apr. 29. EXPERIMENTAL: FUCHSPRELLEN

• Sunday, May 1. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Tuesday, May 10. ECLECTIC: DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS, PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, THE HUMAN LIGHT BOX

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Saturday, May 14. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, CRETELLA|PAOLUCCI DUO, FLANDREW FLEISENBERG

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, June 24. SOLO GUITAR: GLENN ROTH, ALT-COUNTRY: LINES WEST

• Thursday, June 30. SINGER-SONGWRITER: EUGENE GALLAGHER

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

Music: Monthly free afternoon bluegrass jam this Sun., May 1, 2—5 PM

The “First Sunday” Hamden Bluegrass Jam—hosted by GuitarTown CT Productions—takes place this Sunday afternoon, May 1, from 2—5 PM in Best Video Performance Space. There is no cover so come on down—have a coffee, beer or glass of wine and enjoy the music. It’s all acoustic and mostly traditional. Any and all bluegrass players are welcome.

Bluegrass_jam_Web

Bring your instrument or just bring your ears. Come to pick or just to listen.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Thursday, Apr. 28. TIN PAN ALLEY: ZAHTIE’S BATHTUB GIN

• Friday, Apr. 29. EXPERIMENTAL: FUCHSPRELLEN

• Sunday, May 1. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Tuesday, May 10. ECLECTIC: DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS, PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, THE HUMAN LIGHT BOX

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Saturday, May 14. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, CRETELLA|PAOLUCCI DUO, FLANDREW FLEISENBERG

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, June 24. SOLO GUITAR: GLENN ROTH, ALT-COUNTRY: LINES WEST

• Thursday, June 30. SINGER-SONGWRITER: EUGENE GALLAGHER

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

New releases 4/26/16

Top Hits
Jane_Got_GunJane Got a Gun (western, Natalie Portman. Rotten Tomatoes: 43%. Metacritic: 49. From Glenn Kenny’s New York Times review: “Under such circumstances one hopes for, if not a lost masterpiece, then something quirky and entertaining. The tale of a frontier wife, Jane [Natalie Portman)], in the New Mexico Territory, enlisting a former lover [Joel Edgerton] to defend home and hearth after her husband has been laid low did not seem to be an unreasonable scenario. I was hoping for something along the lines of a gender-reversed ‘Shane,’ with Noah Emmerich [he plays the husband] in the Jean Arthur role. No such luck.” Read more…)

Ride Along 2 (comedy, Ice Cube. Rotten Tomatoes: 15%. Metacritic: 32. From A.O. Scott’s New York Times review: “‘Ride Along 2,’ it may not surprise you to learn, is a lot like ‘Ride Along,’ only less so. The buddy-cop action-comedy is a foolproof genre, though it’s also one that requires a fool. This franchise is lucky to have Kevin Hart in that role, and his manic comic energy is enough to make the sequel something other than a complete waste of time. But the genre is also stubbornly innovation-proof, and there’s not much new to see here.)

Krampus (horror/holiday/comedy, Toni Collette. Rotten Tomatoes: 66%. Metacritic: 49. From A.O. Scott’s New York Times review: “Occasionally funny, intermittently scary, but mostly hectic and sloppy, ‘Krampus’ tries very hard to be a different kind of Christmas movie. It wants to have its store-bought fruitcake and eat it too, to satirize the meanness and materialism of holiday-observing Americans and also connect with the vaguely defined real meaning of the season.” Read more…)

New Blu-Ray
Ride Along 2
Krampus

New Foreign
Son_of_SaulSon of Saul (Hungary, Oscar-winning Holocaust drama, Geza Rohrig. Rotten Tomatoes: 96%. Metacritic: 89. From A.O. Scott’s New York Times review: “The shape of the screen is unusually narrow in ‘Son of Saul,’ the 38-year-old Hungarian filmmaker Laszlo Nemes’s debut feature. Nearly square, it evokes an earlier era, when all movies looked this way, and also emphasizes the claustrophobia of the story and the setting. We are in a Nazi death camp, and really in it, to a degree that few fictional films have had the nerve to attempt. The camera doesn’t just survey the barracks and the guard towers, the haggard prisoners and brutal guards. It takes us to the very door of the gas chambers, in the close company of Saul Auslander [Geza Rohrig], a Jewish inmate who is a member of the camp’s Sonderkommando [special commando] unit.” Read more…)

Phoenix (Germany, postwar drama, Nina Hoss. Rotten Tomatoes: 98%. Metacritic: 89. From A.O. Scott’s New York Times review: “[Director Christian] Petzold is not the kind of director to indulge in showy homages, but his films are nonetheless steeped in the cinematic styles and genres of the past. ‘Jerichow’ was a reimagining of ‘The Postman Always Rings Twice.’ ‘Barbara,’ set in East Germany in the 1980s, was a suspenseful romantic melodrama, and in both cases Ms. Hoss evoked the blond hauteur and old-Hollywood heat of Lana Turner. With its themes of suppressed desire and mistaken identity, ‘Phoenix’ has more than a touch of ‘Vertigo,’ but instead of Hitchcockian psychological puzzles, it explores unsolvable and perhaps unspeakable moral conundrums.” Read more…)

New American Back Catalog (post-1960)
What? (1972, Roman Polanski-directed sex farce, Marcello Mastroianni)

New British
Detectorists: Season 1 (British comedy series, Mackenzie Crook)

New Documentaries
Kennedy_FilmsThe Kennedy Films of Robert Drew & Associates (historic cinema verite docs, JFK. From J. Hoberman’s New York Times DVD review: “Ronald Reagan was a movie star who became a politician; John F. Kennedy was a politician who took on the glamour of a movie star. The process began before Senator Kennedy’s election to the presidency in 1960, when he gave Robert Drew, a producer of news films for Time Inc., permission to document his campaign during the Wisconsin primary. Kennedy’s opponent, Senator Hubert H. Humphrey of Minnesota, had no choice but to follow that lead. The result was the 53-minute film ‘Primary’ [1960], which Mr. Drew [1924-2014] followed with two TV documentaries about the Kennedy presidency, ‘Adventures on the New Frontier’ [1961] and ‘Crisis’ [1963]. All three, along with Mr. Drew’s short ‘Faces of November’ [1964], a reflection on public grief in response to Kennedy’s assassination, have been reissued on disc as ‘The Kennedy Films of Robert Drew & Associates.'” Read more…)

Cartel Land (drug traffickers, crime, violence, Mexico. Rotten Tomatoes: 89%. Metacritic: 76. From Manohla Dargis’ New York Times review: “The director Matthew Heineman has a terrific eye. And, to judge from ‘Cartel Land,’ his immersive documentary about American and Mexican vigilante groups, he also has guts and nerves of steel. Serving as the primary cinematographer, he employs a run-and-gun style for much of the movie, using a lightweight digital camera that at times lurches so dramatically that you can visualize the body attached to it. Considering that Mr. Heineman landed in a few shootouts while making this documentary, both his camera moves and its pictorial quality are striking.” Read more…)

Life_in_Dirty_MoviesA Life In Dirty Movies (Joe Sarno, bio, film history, sex history. Rotten Tomatoes: 100%. Metacritic: 69. From Nicolas Rapold’s New York Times review: “In Joe Sarno’s sexploitation movies, with titles like ‘Sin in the Suburbs,’ sex is only one part of the picture. Mr. Sarno, a classic example of an auteur laboring in the shadows, used his genre to delve into thornier truths and anxieties about desire. Wiktor Ericsson’s ‘A Life in Dirty Movies’ outlines this filmmaker’s work reasonably well, but, somewhat surprisingly, truly hits home with a heartwarming look at Mr. Sarno’s relationship with his wife, Peggy.” Read more…)

Mile… Mile & a Half (sports, hiking, nature)

Music: Fuchsprellen makes it up on the fly Fri., Apr. 29

Fuchsprellen_BV_040315_01_WebThe free improvising group Fuchsprellen will perform in the Best Video Performance Space on Friday, Apr. 29. The music starts at 8 PM and the cover is $5.

Fuchsprellen—the name comes from “fox tossing,” a popular blood sport of the 17th and 18th centuries—play free-form, improvised music.  The group this evening will be comprised of Peter Riccio (guitarist and singer of The Sawtelles) on drums, Pete Brunelli on electronics and bass, Best Video manager Richard Brown on alto saxophone and John Venter on saxophone. No foxes will be harmed in the making of this music.

This is music composed in real time with the various players listening to and responding to the sounds created by their compatriots. Anything can happen and it often does. This music evokes the free jazz of the 1960’s and 1970’s—although it isn’t really “jazz,” per se—and the New York City loft scene of the 1980’s.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Friday, Apr. 22. JAZZ: REBECCA ABBOTT, GARY GRIPPO & FRIENDS

• Monday, Apr. 25. FILM SCREENING: “A FACE IN THE CROWD”

• Thursday, Apr. 28. TIN PAN ALLEY: ZAHTIE’S BATHTUB GIN

• Friday, Apr. 29. EXPERIMENTAL: FUCHSPRELLEN

• Saturday, Apr. 30. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, BLACK FLUFF

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

Music: Zahtie’s Bathtub Gin offers Tin Pan Alley tunes Wed., Apr. 28

roaring-twentiesZahtie’s Bathtub Gin will distill an evening of Tin Pan Alley tunes on Thursday, Apr. 28. The show starts at 8 PM and the cover is $5. Feel free—encouraged, even—to dress up Roaring Twenties style for this speakeasy spectacular.

Zahtie’s Bathtub Gin is a quartet featuring Adam Matlock (clatinet) and Brian Slattery (bass) from Dr. Caterwaul’s Cadre of Clairvoyant Claptraps along with Christina Crowder (accordion, piano) and Zohra Rawling (voice).

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Thursday, Apr. 21. INDIE FOLK: THE MID SEASON, XAVIER SERRANO

• Friday, Apr. 22. JAZZ: REBECCA ABBOTT, GARY GRIPPO & FRIENDS

• Monday, Apr. 25. FILM SCREENING: “A FACE IN THE CROWD”

• Thursday, Apr. 28. TIN PAN ALLEY: ZAHTIE’S BATHTUB GIN

• Friday, Apr. 29. EXPERIMENTAL: FUCHSPRELLEN

• Saturday, Apr. 30. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, BLACK FLUFF

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

Film Screening: “A Face in the Crowd,” starring Andy Griffith, Mon., Apr. 25, at 7 AM

Face_in_the_Crowd_WebProgrammed in consultation with the League of Women Voters (Hamden-North Haven) and Temple Beth Sholom, the current film series—dubbed “Candidates, Campaigns, and Controversies: Great Political Films”—features clasic films dealing with politics and political issues. The next movie in the series in Elia Kazan’s 1957 film “A Face in the Crowd,” starring Andy Griffith. All the remaining screenings will be on Mondays at 7 PM. Admission to each screening is $7 (TBS members get in free).

Andy Griffith plays Lonesome Rhodes, an Arkansas drifter who gets plunked from a drunk tank and put on the radio, where he parlays his natural folksy charisma into national fame and a proximity to power. Written by Budd Schulberg and directed by Elia Kazan, “A Face in the Crowd” is an astute early satire of the nexus between media and politics in the television age.

New York Times critic Bosley Crowther, writing in 1957, observed, “In a way, it is not surprising that this flamboyant Lonesome Rhodes dominates the other characters in the story and consequently the show. For Mr. Schulberg has penned a powerful person of the raw, vulgar, roughneck, cornball breed, and Mr. Griffith plays him with thunderous vigor, under the guidance of Mr. Kazan. You know you are in the vicinity of someone who has white-lightning for blood when Mr. Griffith first hits old ‘Mama Git-tar’ and howls his ‘Free Man in the Morning’ song. And you know you are up against a trickster when he starts spouting amiable lies. Mr. Schulberg and Mr. Kazan spawn a monster not unlike the one of Dr. Frankenstein.”

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Thursday, Apr. 21. INDIE FOLK: THE MID SEASON, XAVIER SERRANO

• Friday, Apr. 22. JAZZ: REBECCA ABBOTT, GARY GRIPPO & FRIENDS

• Monday, Apr. 25. FILM SCREENING: “A FACE IN THE CROWD”

• Thursday, Apr. 28. TIN PAN ALLEY: ZAHTIE’S BATHTUB GIN

• Friday, Apr. 29. EXPERIMENTAL: FUCHSPRELLEN

• Saturday, Apr. 30. FILM SCREENING/WINE & CHEESE TASTING: VINO/NOIR

• Monday, May 2. FILM SCREENING: “THE CANDIDATE”

• Thursday, May 5. BLUEGRASS: THE WALKINGWOOD MANDOLIN QUARTET

• Friday, May 6. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Saturday, May 7. SOFT ACOUSTIC/ROCK: THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS

• Monday, May 9. FILM SCREENING: “FRUITVALE STATION”

• Wednesday, May 11. ROCK: THE NEW CHASTITY

• Friday, May 13. THREE SONGWRITERS IN THE ROUND: ANNE MARIE MENTA, DICK NEAL, GLEN ROETHEL

• Monday, May 16. FILM SCREENING: “SARAH’S KEY” (in partnership with the Jewish Community Center of New Haven)

• Thursday, May 19. EXPERIMENTAL: RIVENER, BLACK FLUFF

• Friday, May 20. JAZZ VOCALS & GUITAR: LINDA SATIN & JOE CARTER

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

New releases 4/19/16

Top Hits
The_RevenantThe Revenant (historical action, Leonardo DiCaprio. Rotten Tomatoes: 82%. Metacritic: 76. From Manohla Dargis’ New York Times review: “‘The Revenant’ is an American foundation story, by turns soaring and overblown. Directed by Alejandro G. Iñárritu [‘Birdman,’ ‘Babel’], it features a battalion of very fine, hardworking actors, none more diligently committed than Mr. DiCaprio, and some of the most beautiful natural tableaus you’re likely to see in a movie this year. Partly shot in outwardly unspoiled tracts in Canada and Argentina, it has the brilliant, crystalline look that high-definition digital can provide, with natural vistas that seem to go on forever and suggest the seeming limitless bounty that once was. Here, green lichen carpets trees that look tall enough to pierce the heavens. It’s that kind of movie, with that kind of visual splendor — it spurs you to match its industrious poeticism.” Read more…)

Lamb (drama, Ross Partridge. Rotten Tomatoes: 80%. Metacritic: 62. From Manohla Dargis’ New York Times review: “‘Lamb,’ a slow-burning creep-out about a kidnapping, would like you to see it as a requiem for the lost and the loveless. Set in a present that looks like real life but doesn’t feel like it, the story pivots on its title sad sack, David Lamb, a habitual dissembler and possible sociopath mired in personal and professional crisis. Death, marital and work woes, a young mistress — Lamb has it all when one day he sweeps away an 11-year-old girl, taking her for, well, what exactly is the question that reverberates queasily through this movie, its hotel rooms and weepy moments.” Read more…)

Lady_in_the_VanThe Lady in the Van (drama, Maggie Smith. Rotten Tomatoes: 93%. Metacritic: 70. From Stephen Holden’s New York Times review: “A real person from the British playwright Alan Bennett’s past, Mary was a homeless woman of advanced age who, beginning in the 1970s, lived in a yellow van that she parked, with his grudging permission, for 15 years in his driveway. Her story, which Mr. Bennett has described as “mostly true,” was adapted from his memoir into a play starring Ms. Smith in 1999. Now it’s a reasonably entertaining film directed by Nicholas Hytner and carried almost entirely by the force of Ms. Smith’s performance.” Read more…)

Fifty Shades of Black (comedy, Marlon Wayans. Rotten Tomatoes: 7%. Metacritic: 28. From Andy Webster’s New York Times review: “‘Fifty shades of terrible!’ says Christian Black [Marlon Wayans], as he reads E. L. James’s erotic best seller ‘Fifty Shades of Grey.’ ‘Who wrote this, a third grader?’ Other trenchant observations pepper ‘Fifty Shades of Black,’ a scattershot satire of the book’s 2015 screen adaptation, but a lot of wading is required to find them. Mr. Wayans, who skewered horror flicks with the ‘Haunted House’ and ‘Scary Movie”’series, has found another ripe subject for pillorying. [At least two stage parodies got to ‘Fifty Shades,’ the novel, first.] But as with other staples of the screen-parody genre, the comic bull’s-eyes arrive only intermittently.” Read more…)

New Blu-Ray
The Lady in the Van
The Revenant

New Foreign
SembeneSembène! (Senegal, documentary about legendary African director, Ousmane Sembene. Rotten Tomatoes: 94%. Metacritic: 68. From Nicolas Rapold’s New York Times review: “Though its title, ‘Sembène!,’ might suggest a musical, this film is closer to a college seminar, Ousmane Sembène 101. A documentary about Mr. Sembène, the trailblazing Senegalese filmmaker, this movie covers the essentials about a cultural warrior whose nine varied features and assorted shorts could still use better recognition. But the film, by Samba Gadjigo, a professor and Sembène biographer, and Jason Silverman, is more dutiful than deep, and is bogged down by Mr. Gadjigo’s drab asides about himself.” Read more…)

Ip Man 3 (martial arts, Jin Zhang. Rotten Tomatoes: 81%. Metacritic: 57. From Andy Webster’s New York Times review: “In Bruce Lee’s unfinished film ‘Game of Death,’ there is a classic bout between Le and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. ‘Ip Man 3,’ the latest installment in a series starring Donnie Yen as Lee’s fabled instructor, offers similar stunt casting, in a fight between Mr. Yen and the former pro boxer Mike Tyson, who plays a gang boss. As rewarding as the matchup is — pile-driver force meeting the graceful kung fu style wing chun — it is not the movie’s climax, and ends in a stalemate.” Read more…)

New American Back Catalog (post-1960)
Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street (1972, Samuel Fuller-directed detective story, Glenn Corbett)

New Documentaries
Drunk_StonedDrunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Story of the National Lampoon (National Lampoon doc, Chevy Chase. Rotten Tomatoes: 86%. Metacritic: 74. A New York Times Critic’s Pick. From Stephen Holden’s Times review: “‘Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Story of The National Lampoon’ looks longingly back at the 1970s when a smart, tasteless joke could make you laugh out loud without worrying about hurting someone’s feelings or being attacked on social media. Hedonism was in full sway and political correctness in its infancy. A satirical magazine started by three Harvard graduates — Doug Kenney, Henry Beard and Robert Hoffman — The National Lampoon took the ball passed by forerunners like the comedy troupe Firesign Theater and ran with it to the bank. For dope-smoking, left-leaning baby boomers, The Lampoon enshrined the concept of hip.” Read more…)

A Dog Named Gucci (activism, preventing animal abuse, Gorman Bechard)
Theory of Obscurity: A Film About the Residents (music, performance art, The Residents)

New Music
Theory of Obscurity: A Film About the Residents (music, performance art, The Residents)

Contest! Win 2 tickets! Win a DVD of “Theory of Obscurity!” The Residents play New Haven Sat., Apr. 23

Residents_DVD_WebCONTEST: Legendary avant-garde and performance art rock band The Residents are playing College Street Music Hall in New Haven this Saturday, Apr. 23!

For a chance to win TWO TICKETS & the documentary about The Residents, “Theory of Obscurity,” on DVD—which will be screened before their Saturday performance—come into Best Video Film & Cultural Center by Friday, Apr. 22, at noon and answer this question: What obscure Bavarian avant-garde philosopher developed the “theory of obscurity?”

You must write your answer and your contact info on a piece of paper provided at the store. A winner will be drawn at random Friday afternoon!

The show is presented by Manic Productions, Premier Concerts, CTNOW, BAR – New Haven, Best Video Film & Cultural Center and Geronimo Tequila Bar and Southwestern Grill.

To purchase tickets—if you don’t win the contest!—click here.