Lakers Game Four.

June 9, 2010

On Sunday, I decided to really get into the Lakers. I was bored. I needed a hobby. Like I said, it was a Sunday.

Now, today, it seems that what was missing in my life was just this:

Another excuse to get together with friends and drink.

Apparently, Los Angeles Lakers fans have been doing this for years.

Who knew?

Tomorrow night at 6pm we will be showing the game on the big screen. There is no entrance fee. We have beer and wine and, as far as I know, none of us are from Boston.

Although, how about a little less of  this and more of this:

Drew Barrymore, Lakers darling.

Also, stick around after the game for our Art Walk festivities. Buttermilk truck will be here. And so will I – hopefully – celebrating our big win.

It’s the next best thing to actually being at the game! Hope to see all of you!

My first year at Bennington, I thought I was going to be a philosophy major.

My first philosophy class was Existentialism. I know that. The other philosophy classes I took I can’t remember, or, perhaps, I didn’t take any more. And who can say why! It’s impressive in certain circles when I say I read Being and Nothingness, despite the fact I can’t remember a single thing about it (of course, I leave that part out.) I remember a lot of Thus Spoke Zarathustra and I read the character of Garcin in Sartre’s No Exit out loud in class. I know how to pronounce Sartre correctly, so at least I left with something.

Somewhere along the way I must have tired of philosophy. I think it was around the time all of my classmates were taking “The Philosophy of Love and Friendship” and became all chummy that I strayed. Looking back, I realize my exclusion of this class during my academic career was a mistake. This mistake has completely colored my  social and dating life. Love and friendship confuse me. It reminds me of a line from Elaine Dundy: “Someone will say or do something that strikes me as odd and my whole world falls apart.” I was turned onto Dundy by my lovely friend Risa. Her blog is named after a line from a Lorrie Moore novel.
Anyway, I’m getting away from myself.

Tonight is the premiere of THE PHILOSOPHER KINGS.

This movie is great. But, you don’t have to take my word for it. Read some of these reviews:

“Instead he’s crafted a hypnotic, moving paean to the complex lives of his subjects, a half-dozen custodians at institutions of higher learning all across the country.” – LA WEEKLY

“Powerful and inspirational.” – LAist

Check out more on their website.
Tonight and tomorrow after both 7:30 and 10:00pm screenings there will be a Q&A with the director and members of the cast. There will also be a rooftop reception/after party. So, come say hello to Valentine, Gus, Danny and Jarred. They’ll be working tonight, or say hi to me and Emily and the rest of us who will be working tomorrow.

We want you to see this film. We want you to love this film.

Also, the first five people who mention “Twitter” to us tomorrow night will get two free tickets to the 7:30 screening and access to our rooftop for the after party.

We hope to see you all!

-N

I'll be here, having some beers.

SO SIMPLE PRESENTS: PARTY AT THE MOVIES II

A night of extreme electronics!

Audio performances by:
DR. STRANGELOOP (Brainfeeder)
CYRUSREX
MIKE DOBLER
WET MANGO (Darkmatter, Sonic Death Rabbit)
WMX (So Simple)
TED NAVA (So Simple)

Visual performances by:
NABOA (Naboa)
ALEX PELLY (Dublab)
DR. STRANGELOOP (Brainfeeder)

10pm-2am / $10 / 21+
We hope to see you all!

What is Marmaduke?

May 19, 2010

Over the weekend Jay and I were driving and we were at a stop light in Downtown and next to us was the 92 bus, with an advertisement plastered to the side for the upcoming film Marmaduke, allegedly based on the newspaper comic of the same name. I turned to Jay and I asked, “What is – Marmaduke?”

“What’s Marmaduke?!” He screamed, “What do you mean ‘What’s Marmaduke?!’”

“What do you mean what do I mean? It sounds familiar, but I don’t know what it is.  What is it?”

“Didn’t you ever read the funny pages in the newspaper?” He asked.

“What are the ‘funny pages?’ I said. “The Op Eds?

After much research I’ve discovered that Marmaduke is a dog who is lazy, sexually promiscuous, selfish, often cruel, usually unable to do basic everyday tasks, and who likes to eat and sleep a lot. In short, he is me, but a dog.

These characteristics of a person, let alone a dog, do not a movie make.

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Speaking of newspapers, here are a few local items I found of interest, with some brief commentary:

At least they got to keep the beehive.

  • “About 40 dead fish have been found floating on the surface of Echo Park Lake over the weekend” - What is killing the fish in Echo Park Lake, The Eastsider LA

It sounds like Dante’s Peak, but this is Los Angeles – so, maybe more Volcano?

Hugh? Help?

After two years, I had to move from downtown to nearby Highland Park, I am still downtown every day (really, every day) and frequent most if not all of the businesses offering downtowner discounts. I want an honorary resident card!

Yes, please.

AND, look below for a glimpse of some of the exciting things coming soon at DTI:

View all of our upcoming events on our website.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more, or, maybe, a little less.

-NEDJELKO

Okay – I’m back from an extended absence. By “extended absence” I don’t mean that I was out of town or not at work since my last blog post. I just mean – I wasn’t blogging.

I promised last time I would write something A Little More Personal (Raw) and so here it goes:

At Groundwork, which is just down the street from us, every day at 11AM, I get the New Guinea blend, simply because once I saw a documentary about Papua New Guinea.

New Guinea blend? Or Bitches Brew? New Guinea, please.

This is what I did over the weekend: I went to the house-warming party of one of my dearest friends Jess. I met her while we were both interning at WIP (RIP). Interesting side note – at the time we were there the company was upset that Michael Haneke had remade his own film FUNNY GAMES into a shot-for-shot remake. Funny Games, as I’ve heard been said now, is the film that sunk the independent studio, which cannot be completely true, and, regardless, in the short time WIP was in business they developed an impressive roster of films including some of my recent favorites: We Don’t Live Here Anymore, A Very Long Engagement, Before Sunset, Goodnight and Good Luck, Infamous (Which I actually think is much better, in every way, than Capote), A Scanner Darkly and several others.

I loved their advertising campaign, to say the least.

Anyway, back to my weekend – there was that house-warming party. Then, the next day, I took, by force, two of my friends (one being Jess and the other being Jay) to see Letters to Juliet. Firstly, because I will see Vanessa Redgrave in everything and anything and, secondly, because I wanted to check out the new Pasadena Arclight. Or Arclight Pasadena, or whatever it is. Good news: Unlike Arclight Hollywood, Pasadena has weekend matinee prices before 6PM. Still, I felt a little foolish paying $12.50 to see Letters to Juliet, but that was no fault of Arclight’s, it was my own.

Why? Why did I see this?

That night my housemates and I had a “Wet Hot American Summer” barbecue where we celebrated my oldest friend Wendy’s birthday. Wendy turned twenty-four, but I mean I’ve known her my whole life. Or, at least, since high school. Happy Birthday! Here’s to another ten years of getting to us!

We projected the movie onto our back wall and we ate, drank and tried to be merry. That is, we became merry after we drank for a few hours.

Anyway, enough about me.

More on what’s coming up here at the DTI tomorrow. Or Thursday.

Yours,

N

** I feel the need to put a disclaimer on this post. Something like: the views expressed here reflect, in no way, the views of the Downtown Independent, but, only one of its several employees, who no longer owns a car, lives in Highland Park, who spends all of his money on books and booze, who hasn’t seen any Godard film post-1968, who has once (once!) been called pretentious, and so what does he know anyways?

Okay. It’s lunchtime. I promised a new blog every day  “’round lunch time.” I skipped Monday and Tuesday because I was recovering from my Las Vegas weekend. I had the best time, except for one thing:

Nobody would see Rita Ruder’s show at Harrah’s with me.

Luckily, I can catch her show “Rita Rudner: Live From Las Vegas!” on KCET PBS on June 2nd.

Harrah’s is  paying me to blog about Rita Rudner, in case you were wondering.

Actually, that’s a lie. I just really like Rita Rudner.

It’s good to be back at work at the DTI and even better to be back in Los Angeles. Vegas is a blast but isn’t it also exhausting? All that drinking and walking can really take a lot out of a person.

Speaking of DTI, this Saturday we have Mochilla’s Timeless party. It’s going to be big. It’s going to be fun. It’s going to be loud.

We also have several films making their Los Angeles premieres at the LA Asian Pacific Film Festival next week. There are a lot of films I’d like to see, including The Actresses, which is allegedly a documentary-style, improvisational, Altman-esque film starring some of Korea’s most famous actresses. I just hope I won’t be scheduled to man the concession booth so I can check it out on May 8th. There’s also a lot of other interesting should-see & must-see films at the Festival. Go to their website to check them all out.

I’ve also been watching a lot of interesting films for free on Hulu. Polanski’s first feature Knife in the Water is up. I had never seen it before, and, yes, it was annoying with the 30 second commercial spots breaking up the tension every ten minutes or so, but I still loved it. Also: I have a confession to make: I never finished Chinatown. Don’t hate me. I do have a fond memory of seeing The Ninth Gate when I was fourteen years old in a theater all by myself. If the movie were frightening at all (besides the beautiful & bizarre opening credits) I would have been frightened. There’s also this charming documentary Billy the Kid on the site, which made me cry. Billy is like a young, even more odd, and male version of Little Edie with his tiny gems of quotable dialogue.

I’m going to wrap this up but I wanted to give two downtown shout outs. One to Old Bank DVD, which is the best dvd store in Los Angeles, hands down. And one to The Last Bookstore. The Last Bookstore opened recently and they have developed a large collection of used and vintage books. I go in there every day and walk out with something. I love it.

That’s all from me for now.

Jeeze, today’s blog post is like a big advertisement. Tomorrow’s I’ll just tell you a little story about my personal life, which is a redundancy I’ve never understood.

-N

We’re back.

My co-workers have become too busy to blog while they’re at the theater because they are, you know, working. It’s difficult to blog when you’re serving beer to hundreds of people.

Anyway, I have some news! I am now the theater’s assistant! This means I’m in the office with Vivian during the day and then I pick up occasional bar shifts at night. So, don’t worry, friends. I’ll still be handing out your popcorn. This also means that I’m going to take twenty minutes a day to update our blog. So, bookmark us. Expect a blog from me every day ’round lunchtime.

Here is a picture Viv took of me working:

I know. My mustache grew in crooked.

These are some of the events I’m excited about that are happening here in the coming weeks:

May 11th – Enter the Tuesday: Man Bites Dog – Have any of you seen this movie? It’s so good! If you like serial killers and free PBR this is a can’t-miss night. I first saw this movie in college with my ex-best friend. He could not watch it. He said it was “too violent.” It was then I realized that our friendship was not going well.

Also, for the documentary set we have Westbound and The Philosopher Kings (and Girls on the Wall & Handmade Nation & Beautiful Losers). I know. It’s difficult to choose just one. I’ve loved them all. But I’m a documentary person. I grew up watching Nanook of the North and Rivers of Sand. I even wrote my senior thesis on Dziga Vertov and Jean Rouch. Of course, that was years ago at Bennington and if you asked me what I wrote about them I wouldn’t be able to tell you (I don’t remember a lot from that last term of college, but, I’m told I had a really good time.).  Oh, by the way, did any of you see 45365 at the theater last month? Ebert gave it four stars, and so do I. It reminded me a lot of Altman’s Nashville, which, if you know me, you know is my favorite movie (next to Another Woman & The Last Days of Disco). If you didn’t see it here, definitely see it when you can.

I’ll tell you more about what’s coming up at the Downtown Independent tomorrow.

Until then,

NEDJELKO

Waiting for Armageddon

February 10, 2010

Tonight is the preem of Waiting for Armageddon.

Doesn’t it look good?


Read the LA Times review:

LA TIMES
MOVIE REVIEW
‘Waiting for Armageddon’
Evangelical Christians are focus of ‘Waiting for Armageddon.’

[PHOTO]
An evangelical Christian looks out onto the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem in
the documentary “Waiting for Armageddon.” (First Run Features / February 9,
2010)

By Gary Goldstein
February 10, 2010

By turns frightening, fascinating and eye-opening, the documentary “Waiting
for Armageddon” offers much to rouse followers of various religious and
political stripes. Though the film’s structure may hang on the biblically
foretold, world-destroying-then-renewing phases of Rapture, Tribulation,
Armageddon and Millennium, the piece also serves as an absorbing snapshot of
America’s highly influential, reportedly 50-million-strong evangelical
Christian movement.

Surprisingly (or not surprisingly, based upon one’s theological
proficiency), much of the movie takes place, both physically and
spiritually, in Israel, where it is believed Jesus will return for a
1,000-year reign. That this heavenly period would supposedly include the
conversion of 144,000 Jews to Christianity may not set well with, for
starters, Jewish viewers is not the point here. Neither are some of the
film’s subjects’ decidedly negative views of Islam.

What seemingly — and effectively — most concerns co-directors Kate Davis,
Franco Sacchi and David Heilbroner is the power of evangelical commitment to
certain long-held, some might deem extreme, principles, along with how these
face-value beliefs factor into ostensibly average folks’ daily lives and, at
times, affect the American sociopolitical system. It’s an ambitious yet
compactly presented approach.

Though the filmmakers are not out to condone or rebut evangelical Christian
doctrine, such pundits as theologian Barbara Rossing, the Rev. Dr. Mel White
and Jerusalem’s Rabbi Felix Rogin offer stirring counterpoint to the
proceedings.

Anyway, I’ll be seeing it tonight. I hope some of you will join me!

-Nedjelko

If you haven’t been to the theater yet to check out Bronson then you’ve got two more days left to do it. Bronson has had a very successful run here at the Independent. I saw it and liked it very much. Visually it’s stunning, emotionally it’s crippling, and musically it’s a lot of fun. I suggest you see it.

Oh, and apologies to the group of people who thought the movie was about this Charles Bronson:

And instead saw a movie about this other Bronson:

As portrayed by this actor, who was incredible by the way:

Logan Crow of Mondo Celluloid wrote that it was “A volcanic blitzkrieg of sight and sound”, which is a great way to describe it. Read the entire review of it here.

Next up we have Ichi the Killer on Tuesday at 10pm which has an entrance fee of $10 but has all-you-can-drink Pabst Blue Ribbon. Thursday is our monthly Art Walk party. Valentine’s Day we have a romantic screening of David Lynch’s Wild at Heart.

We hope to see you at the theater soon!

- Nedjelko, part of your friendly, local Downtown Indie team.

We have had so many exciting events and films at the Independent this holiday season (hence the lag in blog posts recently – sorry! we’ve been way busy, but we’ll make it up to you! – New Years Resolution #1: More blog posts) – and we have even more coming up in the new year. So, I thought I’d take a moment and share them with you…

Currently we have The Horse Boy, which is showing daily until, well, tomorrow. So, see it while it’s still here!

Kicking off 2010 with a bang we will be presenting a Herzog double-feature containing his 2009 releases My Son My Son, What Have Ye Done and Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans. I had the pleasure of seeing My Son My Son with some friends and some other employees of the Independent. I loved it. It’s very odd, very beautiful, very bleak, and actually very funny. See it if you missed it before (On a sidenote, thank you very much to Herzog, his cast and crew, and all of you who attended our premiere My Son event and  after party).

We, of course, also have our Holy F*ck! comedy event on the 12th, as well as our Enter the Tuesday! event directly following at 10pm.

We have a very special week-long run of The Messenger, starring Woody Harrelson, Ben Foster and Samantha Morton, from January 15th through January 21st. See it before it gets nominated for some Oscars.

Also, join us for our first Art Walk bash of the decade. For more info on that, click here.

There’s much more coming up, so check out our website or subscribe to our email list.

Hope to see you all soon!

-Nedjelko, Downtown Indie Dream Team

PS. I just finished Lorrie Moore’s and Philip Roth’s latest novels  A Gate at the Stairs and The Humbling. I need another book to read now. Any suggestions?

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