September 19, 2005

Pretty Fly For A White Guy

Many thanks to our Toronto Correspondent William for filling us in last week on the buzz films at the Canadian film festival that's often the first stop to Oscar. To catch up on his coverage, read one, two and three installments. Festivals can be a wonderful way to pack a lot in to a few days but they can also be exhausting. The Cinecultist should know as New York hosted both the CMJ music festival and the RES fest for digital video this past weekend. We may need all week to be totally recouped.

On Saturday night, Matty and CC attended an intriguing retrospective o' Beck videos as a part of RES's excellent four days of programming at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center. This group of videos reminded CC what we've known since we saw him perform in '96 in our college gym, Beck is the full package. His music is always intriguing and thought-provoking but it's also catchy as hell. Plus, his quest for innovation extends into the visual as well. He's worked with a number of well known video directors like Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry, Mark Romanek and Stéphane Sednaoui as well up in coming ones and has even directed himself a few times. In his work, Beck plays with his own image (he's in an Indian headdress, he's a '60s popster, he's a disembodied cartoon head) and yet he's also funny and a showman. An entertainer with a brain, how delightful.

We caught another real showboat later on Saturday, though not on stage. Anton Newcombe, the singer from the Brian Jonestown Massacre and one of the stars of the docu Dig! was standing right in front of the door when we got to Pianos later for the Spinto Band show. And when we say right in front, we mean smack dab. Blocking the entrance. A fire hazard, if you will. It was also flustering because despite the music venue, it was so out of context. And of course, being Anton and quickly noting our confusion at his location in front of the door, he started miming like he was the doorman, directing us to go in one at a time. Anton's like that weird guy in high school whose attention seeking antics make you roll your eyes but inwardly, secretly you sort of admire him.

Oh and speaking of seeing famous people out of context, we should also mention that last Thursday after work, our artsy co-workers Melinda and Jonathan took us along to the opening for Amanda de Cadenet's photography show at Stanley Wise gallery in SoHo. Weaving our way around the space, we didn't expect to spot Keanu Reeves standing over in a back corner looking morose, scruffy and dressed all in black. Smile Keanu! You have major Matrix money! You're in Manhattan, it's the end of the humidity season, life is good.

Dude, some people have no sense of perspective.

Posted by karen at September 19, 2005 8:54 AM